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Apple unveils new 10.5-inch iPad Pro, updates 12.9-inch model

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Greg Joswiak iPad Pro Keynote

Apple has replaced the 9.7-inch iPad Pro with a 10.5-inch model, while the 12.9-inch iPad Pro received a hardware refresh at WWDC 2017. The replacement of the 9.7-inch iPad Pro comes just a year after the company launched it to the public.

The new 10.5-inch iPad Pro has a familiar shape and size, but with 20 percent larger display than its predecessor. The bezels are now reduced by 40 percent, and it weights incredibly at just one pound.

Apple Pencil iPad Pro Notes

The iPad Pro lineup — both the 10.5-inch and 12.9-inch models — now feature Apple’s True Tone display, which dynamically adjusts the white balance of the display depending on lighting conditions. The advanced Retina display in iPad Pro features ProMotion technology, which delivers a refresh rate of up to 120Hz. On the other hand, Apple Pencil goes even more responsive with an “industry-best” 20-millisecond latency.

iPad Pro WWDC 2017

Under the hood, the iPad Pro packs an A10X Fusion chip with a six-core CPU, and 12-core GPU, which should result in up to 30 percent faster CPU performance and 40 percent faster graphics performance than A9X’s, according to Apple, while the battery life, as Apple touts, is an all-day gig, and with fast charging. The main camera on the iPad Pro is of 12-megapixel with optical image stabilization and f/1.8, while the secondary unit is a 7-megapixel FaceTime HD camera.

The 10.5-inch iPad Pro comes in silver, space gray, gold and rose gold color choices, starting at $649 for the 64GB, Wi-Fi model, and $779 for the Cellular model. Likewise, the the 12.9-inch iPad Pro comes in at $799 for the 64GB, Wi-Fi model, and $929 for the Cellular one. Both iPads will be shipping next week.

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Apple Pay Now Supports ANZ Eftpos Access Cards In Australia

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Apple Pay on iPhone

Apple Pay has expanded to support Eftpos cards from ANZ Bank in Australia. Eftpos (Electronic fund transfer at point of sales) is a popular debit payments network in Australia. The partnership will bring in-store Apple Pay support to 1.6 million ANZ Access cardholders, according to Eftpos.

Apple’s partnership with Eftpos should get more people to use Apple Pay as Eftpos is the most used debit card network in Australia, and offers a much lower processing fee to retailers as well as customers.

High fees have been one of the biggest hindrances for Apple Pay in Australia, but with today’s move things are starting to get better. When a debit card is used via Apple Pay in Australia, there’s about 0.55 percent fee to the merchant; however, Eftpos drops it significantly to 0.15 percent. (Thanks, Business Insider!)

“About 1.6 million ANZ eftpos Access cardholders now have the opportunity to make payments on an iPhone or Apple Watch, many of whom may not have had the opportunity to make in store mobile payments before,” said Eftpos acting CEO Paul Jennings.

“As Australia’s most used debit card network, we are thrilled to be providing ANZ eftpos Access customers with more payment choice, with added benefits of enhanced security and comfort.”

Eftpos ANZ users can switch between a Cheque and Savings account with ease. More details can be found on the Eftpos website. And yes, Apple has also updated its Australian version of Apple Pay website to reflect the Eftpos partnership.

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Google shares first unedited Pixel 2 photos and videos

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Google Pixel 2 Camera Sample

Google’s Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL, which the company unveiled during its October event past week, have a highly rated camera. The cameras in both the Google phones have scored 98, the highest-ever on a smartphone camera in DxOMark’s rating.

Last year’s Pixel line-up scored 88X, which was the highest-ever on a smartphone camera back then, therefore it’s not surprising to see Google focusing more on camera lenses in Pixel phones. No matter how greater the rating figure is, it’s much more important to test the device in real world, and camera samples take a perfect stand to all the pixel-and-lens specs the company had touted during the product announcement.

Thanks to Google’s Isaac Reynold, who shared a bunch of unedited photos taken from the Pixel 2 camera, we now know (to some extent) how amazingly Google has improved Pixel’s camera. Reynold also posted two videos comparing the video stabilization that’s on offer with Pixel 2. Some of the sample photographs are attached in this post, while you can watch Reynold’s entire upload here.

For a quick recap, Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL both have a 12.2-megapixel camera with f/1.8, Optical Image Stabilization (OIS), Electronic Image Stabilization (EIS), and laser and dual pixel phase detection autofocus.

/ Pixel User Community 

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Apple TV 4K, iPhone 7, iPhone 8 and iPhone X Support FLAC Audio Playback

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iPhone X and Tim Cook

Apple has quietly added support for FLAC audio playback to the recently-announced iPhone 8, iPhone X and Apple TV 4K. Also included in the audio standard’s support list is the iPhone 7.

In case you’re wondering, FLAC stands for Free Lossless Audio Codec. It’s an audio format similar to MP3, but it’s lossless. What that means is the audio is compressed without any loss in quality, providing a lossless compression.

iPhone FLAC Audio

In order to listen to FLAC audio files on your iPhone, you’ll need to use the native Files app or a third-party app such as VLC, as Apple’s Music app doesn’t support the FLAC standard just yet. Plus, a Lightning-connected headphone is recommended to listen to FLAC audio files, as it offers more bandwidth than a connection over Bluetooth.

The new iPhones and Apple TV 4K ship with FLAC playback support, whereas the iPhone 7 gets it with the release of iOS 11 on September 19.

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