AWT News Update: May 3, 2016

Image of "iPhone" products from China via Quartz

Image of "iPhone" products from China via Quartz

Tuesday brings an ominous breeze from China, new banks for Apple Pay, CarPlay to the 2016 Hyundai Sonata, and a handful of new betas.

  • Apple must share the iPhone trademark with a Chinese leather good manufacturer, of all things
  • Think things were bad for Apple in Q2? Just wait, as the Chinese smartphone market is taking a hit
  • Apple Pay is joined by Moody National Bank of Texas as well as 19 other firms, and UK gets a prepaid card option
  • Have a 2016 Hyundai Sonata? Get a CarPlay update from your dealer
  • Betas of OS X, iOS and tvOS hit the streets

The text version of the update is below.

Text Version

Hi, I’m Steve Sande from Apple World Today, and this is the AWT News Update for May 3, 2016.

Something’s rotten in China right now. First, Apple’s iTunes stores for books and movies were shut down recently and unexpectedly by the Chinese government, which has on previous occasions blocked the iTunes Music Store when it took exception to something being sold on it. But the latest is ridiculous. Apple, which has been synonymous with the English phrase “iPhone” since before the device was even announced in early 2007, has been told that it has to share the trademark with the well-known — and I use that term sarcastically — leather products maker Xintong Tiandi Technologies. Apparently, part of the deal has to do with the fact that the Apple iPhone wasn’t sold in mainland China until 2009, two years after the Chinese company registered its trademark. When Apple registered the term iPhone in China for computer products in 2012, the leather firm got miffed. The High People’s Court rejected Apple’s complaint in 2013, saying that Apple couldn’t prove that the name “iPhone” was well-known prior to 2009. Of course, it was very popular in the rest of the world, but apparently that didn’t get too far with the Chinese court system.

There’s also bad news about Apple revenues from China, which are expected to drop 15% in 2016 due to a marketwide slowdown in smartphone sales. In 2015, Apple did quite well in the Chinese market, growing sales 84% year-over-year. Sadly, the numbers aren’t going to be there in 2016 according to analysts at Sterne Agee CRT.

Another week, and Apple has added 20 more banks to the list of Apple Pay supporters. One large Texas Bank — Moody National Bank — was added, and most of the others on the list are likewise regionals instead of nationwide banks. UK Apple Pay users also gained access today to Boon, which is a prepaid option from Wirecard.

Have a 2016 Hyundai Sonata? You can now take advantage of Apple CarPlay in the vehicle, letting you connect an iPhone to your car and use a number of features hands-free using Siri. To upgrade your Sonata’s dashboard system with CarPlay, go to your dealer and you can get an SD card loaded with the update.

Finally on this slow news Tuesday, we’ve heard that the fourth betas of tvOS 9.2.1, iOS 9.3.2 and OS X El Capitan 10.11.5 are now available to developers. This is exactly one week after the third betas were released, so work on the updated operating systems is continuing at its usual fast pace.

We’ll be back tomorrow afternoon with another edition of the AWT News Update.