Apple World Today News Update: April 24, 2018

c62c997f2b1ffdc8ff397d1586e324c0.jpg

We have some entertaining short news stories for you on today's podcast:

  • Verizon gains subscribers in the March quarter, most likely from the Apple Watch Series 3
  • Instagram has a new web tool for downloading all of your content; unfortunately, it was down at the time we broadcasted this!
  • Original Mac icon designer Susan Kare is in the news, winning a prestigious medal from the American Institute of Graphics Art and being called upon by Apple to testify on the company's behalf in the Samsung damages retrial
  • Amazon can already get into your house if you let them...now they are expanding that capability to cars

The text version of the podcast can be read below. To listen to the podcast here, click the play button on the player below. Apple News readers need to visit Apple World Today in order to listen to the podcast.

Text Version

This is Steve Sande for Apple World Today, and you’re listening to the AWT News Update podcast for Tuesday, April 24th, 2018.

Bloomberg reported today that Verizon posted numbers showing that it had added 260,000 net subscribers for the quarter ending March 31, 2018. What’s unique about that is that most of the subscribers were coming to the carrier with wearables and other devices — not cell phones or tablets. It’s thought that most of the devices added were the Apple Watch Series 3, since it’s the most popular cellular-ready smartwatch. The total numbers showed 359,000 subscribers coming into Verizon on wearables, but the company lost 24,000 phone customers and 75,000 tablet users at the same time. Verizon’s wireless revenues dropped 2.4 percent on the growth numbers — that’s because wearable plans bring in very little income to cellular carriers.

Instagram today announced a web tool for downloading all of your content if you decide to leave the service, which is owned by Facebook. The tool is available at instagram.com/download/request, and grabs all of your shared photos, videos, Stories, exchanged messages, comments and so on. After you submit your request to download all of that lovely information, it may take up to 48 hours before you get a download link in your inbox. Oh, and by the way — although the tool was up earlier today, it’s currently down. Perhaps too many people are jumping off of Instagram…

Susan Kare is a person familiar to those of us who have been around the Mac world since 1984. She designed the original user interface icons and several of the fonts for the original Mac. Some of those icons are still in use today, although they’ve been changed to match our high resolution displays. Kare is now 64 years old, and she was honored last Friday with the AIGA (American Institute of Graphics Art) Medal. Most of the icons were hand drawn on sixteen by sixteen pixel and thirty-two by thirty-two pixel icon grids, with Kare using her experience in mosaics and needlepoint to create the bitmap graphics. Kare’s graphics have also shown up elsewhere — for example, she’s designed a spinning button for Pinterest, and was the artist for the original Microsoft Windows Solitaire cards. Kare may also take part in testifying for Apple in the Samsung damages retrial that’s coming up on May 14, talking about icon and user interface graphics design and possibly providing input on one of the specific patents that was allegedly infringed upon by Samsung.

OK, this is getting scary. Remember Amazon Key, the service provided by Amazon where deliveries can be made when you’re not home by unlocking the door of your house and just placing them inside? That was bad enough; now the company is expanding Amazon Key to cars, so you can get packages delivered into your vehicle parked at home or work. The new service works only with 2015 or newer vehicles with OnStar or OnCall made by Chevrolet, Buick, GMC, Cadillac, or Volvo.

That’s all the news for today - join me tomorrow afternoon for another edition of the AWT News Update.