Apple to hand off Chinese iCloud operations to local firm in February

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Chinese iCloud customers have been notified that Apple will transfer operations of its cloud storage service to the local firm Guizhou on the Cloud Big Data (GCBD) starting next month. Apple announced the partnership with GCBD last year and claims the new iCloud operations will help the company comply with Chinese regulations. As of February 28, Apple will start the transfer of Chinese iCloud data to its new data center in Guizhou, where it will be managed by GCBD.

This means that the physical location of Chinese iCloud customers’ data will change, but customers shouldn’t see any differences on their end of their iCloud accounts. In Apple’s message sent to mainland Chinese customers, the company says the new operations setup will “enable us to continue improving the speed and reliability of iCloud and to comply with Chinese regulations.” Customers are urged to consider the new terms and conditions of iCloud operated by GCBD, and customers who are not comfortable with GCBD partnership can terminate their accounts.

While the new agreement hands off local iCloud operations to GCBD, both the Chinese firm and Apple have access to data stored in Chinese iCloud accounts. In a statement provided to 9to5Mac, Apple reassures customers that their data is still just as safe and private as it was before the partnership. “Apple has strong data privacy and security protections in place and no backdoors will be created into any of our systems,” the statement says.

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apple – Ars Technica

Law firm that extracted $450M settlement in Apple e-books case is going after company for throttling iPhones

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Hagens Berman, the consumer rights law firm that successfully obtained a $ 450 million settlement from Apple over e-book price fixing, once again has the tech giant in its sights, and on Friday filed a class-action lawsuit over the iPhone throttling debacle.
AppleInsider – Frontpage News

Apple Acquires App Development Firm Buddybuild

Apple has made its first acquisition of 2018, purchasing Vancouver-based app development service Buddybuild for an undisclosed amount of cash.

The tech giant confirmed the news to TechCrunch yesterday, signaling its efforts to please app developers. Buddybuild is a so-called  “mobile iteration platform” that offers developers integration and debugging solutions.

Headquartered in Canada, Buddybuild effectively provides app development teams with the tools they need to get software up and running through services such as GitHub, BitBucket or BitLab.

This is clearly a strategic move by the Cupertino-located tech firm. It’s constantly trying to offer software developers simple, quick ways to offer apps across its platforms.

Currently, no financial details have been disclosed regarding the deal. However, Apple told TechCrunch that the Buddybuild will continue to operate from Canada. In fact, the start-up said it’s always been proud to be a Canadian company”.

While the price tag of the deal is unclear, some other details have come to surface. Most notably, Buddybuild’s solutions will be added to Xcode. The latter is Apple’s development suite.

It’s used across iOS, macOS, tvOS and watchOS. At this moment in time, the companies haven’t revealed a timeline of when Buddybuild’s software will be rolled into Xcode.

Even though Apple hasn’t released an official statement, Buddybuild has published a short blog post about the deal. In the piece, the firm shares its thoughts on the acquisition.

“We’re excited to share that the buddybuild team has joined the Xcode engineering group at Apple to build amazing developer tools for the entire iOS community,” said the firm.

“We’ve always been proud to be a Canadian company, so we’re also pleased that we will be staying right here in Vancouver — a hotbed of developer and engineering talent.

The firm confirmed that existing users will still get access to Buddybuild’s app development service. That said, no new customers will be accepted.

Last February, the start-up launched an app development service for Android. It’s been made clear that this will end now that Apple owns the company. As TechCrunch notes, Apple made a similar decision when it purchase Testflight.

“The buddybuild service will remain available to existing customers to build, test, and ship iOS apps to testers through buddybuild.com,” added the company.

“As of today, we are no longer accepting new customers. Existing Free Starter plans and Android app development will be discontinued on March 1, 2018.”

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