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Apple updates iMac, MacBook, MacBook Air and MacBook Pro

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New 2017 iMac Family

Apple also updated its iMac, Macbook and Macbook Pro line-up at WWDC 2017 in San Jose. While there’s no significant design changes in the outside, the under-the-hood parts have received a much-needed boost.

The new iMac line is beefed up with more powerful graphics, faster processors, Thunderbolt 3 and a better display. Sporting Kaby Lake processors up to 4.2GHz with Turbo Boost up to 4.5GHz, the updated iMac line — including 27-inch and 21.5-inch iMac models — has Fusion Drive as a standard, which is now up to 50 percent faster.

New 2017 iMac

The graphics segment has new Radeon Pro 500-series with up to 8GB of vRAM across the line, which is up to three times faster on the 21.5-inch model, and up to 50 percent on the 27-inch. The display is now 43 percent brighter at 500 nits, with support for 1 billion colors.

New 2017 MacBook Family
The new MacBook and MacBook Pro deliver the world’s best portable computing experience. Weighing just two pounds and measuring 13.1mm in thickness, the new MacBook packs faster Kaby Lake processors up to 1.3GHz Core i7 with Turbo Boost up to 3.6GHz, and up to 50 percent faster SSD.
The updated 13-inch MacBook Pro sports Kaby Lake processors up to 3.5GHz Core i7 with Turbo Boost up to 4.0 GHz, and the 15-inch MacBook Pro does it at 3.1GHz Core i7  with Turbo Boost up to 4.1GHz. Apple also refreshed the 13-inch MacBook Air with 1.8GHz processor, though it didn’t mention which generation.

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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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