Tech News

Apple Rejects Mac iPad Hybrid , Snapchat Sells Paid Lenses… [Digest]

Dave Parrack 16-11-2015

Apple isn’t planning a Surface clone, Snapchat wants you to buy Lenses, Microsoft kills Zune, Turkey blocks Reddit, and Mission Impossible finally gets a dose of reality.


Cook Says No to Mac/iPad Hybrid

Apple has already copied Microsoft to a certain degree with the iPad Pro Why The iPad Pro Isn't Just A Bigger iPad If you think the new iPad Pro is "just a bigger iPad", you're wrong. It's a new way of iPad-ing. Read More , a larger iPad clearly inspired by the Surface Pro The Laptop And Tablet Killer: Microsoft Surface Pro 3 Announced Available for pre-order on May 21 and hitting store shelves on June 20 is Microsoft's brand new Surface Pro 3. The device features a 12-inch 2160x1440 display, significantly larger than the previous Surface Pro 2's. Read More . However, the company is not planning to go the whole hog and develop a Mac/iPad hybrid that incorporates the best of both in one device. Because it would suck, apparently.

Speaking to the Irish Independent, Apple CEO Tim Cook said:

“We feel strongly that customers are not really looking for a converged Mac and iPad. Because what that would wind up doing, or what we’re worried would happen, is that neither experience would be as good as the customer wants.”

“So we want to make the best tablet in the world and the best Mac in the world. And putting those two together would not achieve either. You’d begin to compromise in different ways.”

“It’s true that the difference between the X86 [Mac] and the A-series [iPad] is much less than it’s ever been. That said, what we’ve tried to do is to recognize that people use both iOS and Mac devices. So we’ve taken certain features and made them more seamless across the devices.”

This is a clear statement that Apple intends to stick with its core product line, producing both Macs and iPads. Which isn’t all that surprising. Then again, no one can predict the future, so things could change in the years ahead. After all, Steve Jobs hated the stylus, but the Apple Pencil is now a thing Is Tim Cook Contradicting Steve Jobs With the iPad Pro and Pencil? It seems that Apple's latest CEO can't stop contradicting his predecessor. Read More .

So, while a Mac/iPad hybrid that combines the best features of both in one glorious whole doesn’t make sense at this point, it could very well do so in the future. Especially with iPad sales on the decline, and Apple’s share of the tablet market dropping below 25 percent as a result.

Snapchat Launches Paid Lenses

After tempting users in with its range of free Lenses, Snapchat is starting to offer paid Lenses. The free Lenses, which are overlays designed to make your boring selfies more exciting, aren’t going away, with seven available every day. The paid ones are there as optional extras.


Each premium Lens costs 99 cents, and once you have bought one it’s yours to keep for ever. To access the Lens Store, just press and hold your face in Selfie mode. Paid Lenses are available now in the U.S., Canada, the UK, Australia, Brazil, Saudi Arabia, and “a handful of other European countries”.

This may seem a bizarre little story, but it demonstrates how Snapchat is getting serious about in-app purchases Facebook Is Working on a Dislike Button, Pay to Replay Snapchat Snaps... [Tech News Digest] Facebook likes Dislike buttons, Snapchat adds new features, Project Morpheus morphs into PlayStation VR, Square and Twitter help you donate to politicians, and Rockstar Games hates the BBC. Read More as a way of making money. Over and above the money it makes from advertising, obviously. Love them or loathe them, completely optional in-app purchases What Are In-App Purchases & How Can I Disable Them? [MakeUseOf Explains] "I can’t believe it!" my cousin said to me the other day, "someone’s just bought a $10 in-app purchase on my mother’s phone, and she doesn’t even know what I’m talking about!". Sounds familiar? How... Read More such as these are undoubtedly the future of online commerce.

Microsoft Finally Kills Zune

Believe it or not, Zune was still a thing until yesterday (November 15th), when Microsoft finally killed it off for good. In September, Microsoft notified the remaining Zune users (all six of them) that the service was being shuttered, and that inglorious fate has now come to pass.

As set out on its support pages, Microsoft explains:


“You will no longer be able to stream or download content to your device from the Zune music service. However, Zune devices will still function as music players and any MP3 content that you own on the Zune device will remain there. You’ll also be able to transfer music to and from your Zune player.”

As reported by Network World, the actual Zune hardware was discontinued in 2011 after failing to take off in any big way. Which surprised no one as it arrived five long years after the iPod changed the world of music The 11 Years Of The iPod [INFOGRAPHIC] I can fondly remember my first iPod. I was a late entrant to the whole Apple craze, and after years of owning crappy MP3 players that broke down constantly and had bad sound, I decided... Read More . And now the whole brand is dead as a dodo, and unlikely to ever be revived.

Turkey Blocks Reddit

Turkey has officially blocked its citizens from accessing Reddit, with users reporting that the ban kicked in on Friday (November 13th). According to a thread on Reddit itself, a message on a government website reads, “After technical analysis and legal consideration … administration measure has been taken for this website”.

It appears that Reddit is the latest victim of Internet Law No. 5651. This allows the Turkish government to block websites for a number of reasons Why The Next 10 Years Looks Bad for Internet Censorship Although denizens of the world are learning more about censorship and learning new ways to counteract it, the outlook for the future of Internet freedom isn't looking good. Read More , including pornography, drugs, terrorism, and, more controversially, “crimes against” Mustafa Atatürk, the first president of Turkey.

Previous blocks, on Twitter and YouTube, have been overturned by Turkish courts, but there’s no guarantee Reddit will be rescued in the same way.


Realistic Mission Impossible Hacking

And finally, while the original Mission Impossible movie is almost 20 years old now, having been released in 1996, the iconic scene in which Tom Cruise hacks into a computer while hanging precariously from wires is still worth revisiting. After all, it’s not exactly realistic.

This video addresses that lack of realism, imagining how the scene would have played out if Hollywood had played by the rules Hollywood Hacks: The Best and Worst Hacking in Movies Hollywood and hacking do not get along. While real-life hacking is hard, movie hacking often involves just pounding away on a keyboard like your fingers are going out of style. Read More . The actual scene is a cinematic masterpiece, while this mocked-up scene is comedy genius sure to mildly amuse geeks around the world. [H/T Reddit]

Your Views on Today’s Tech News

Is Apple wrong to rule out the chances of combining the might of the Mac and the iPad? Will you be buying Snapchat Lenses? Are you sad to see Zune finally killed off? How do you feel about Turkey banning Reddit? What’s the worst example of hacking in movies you have seen?

Let us know your thoughts on the Tech News of the day by posting to the comments section below. Because a healthy discussion is always welcome.


Related topics: Apple, Hacking, iPad Pro, Microsoft Zune, Reddit, Snapchat.

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  1. Anonymous
    November 16, 2015 at 10:53 pm

    I'm sorry to see Zune disappear. I bought two of the original Zune 120 GB players almost 10 years ago. Unfortunately, I left one on a plane, so I'm down to one. I love my Zune for many reasons. The price was about $250 USD new, which was cheaper than anything Apple was offering. Also, no digital rights issues. The original Zune, although it wasn't billed as a video player, does play videos. The second generation was touted as a video player and, of course, the price was much higher. Unfortunately, the cult of Apple killed what was, and still is, an excellent media player. Gloat all you want, but I'm happy with my Zune.

  2. Anonymous
    November 16, 2015 at 3:37 pm

    True story: My company's office has a half dozen OSX users with iMacs. Four of them also use Surface Pro 2s because of the high quality digitizer and need for a powerful device with good connectivity options (i.e. not an ipad) in a tablet form factor.

    ... but hey, Apple tells its users what they want because why would anyone want something Apple isn't already making?