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Apple Maps one year later: The good, the bad, and the future

Some love it, some tolerate it, some ridicule it, and some have all but abandoned it. When Apple made the decision to cut their Google-ties and go it alone with their own mapping service, it was a gutsy move. Google Maps makes people feel safe; it's been around for so long and offered so freely it's become the de-facto map service for many, many people.

Apple Maps, launched with iOS 6, was also free, had a gorgeous interface, gimmicky features like Fly Over, but for many people it simply failed at getting them from point A to point B, or getting locations or points of interests anywhere nearly right. Since then Apple has edited, apologized, reorganized, and poured considerable energy into making Maps better. So how are they doing?

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Private email service Lavabit chooses to quit rather than submit

Lavabit, a private email service currently best known for being NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden's communication medium of choice, has suddenly and unexpectedly announced it's shutting down, hinting it would rather do that than comply with something it claims it's not even allowed to talk about. Ladar Levison, owner and operator, on the Lavabit home page:

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iMore show LIVE! 1pm PDT, 4pm EDT! Be here!!

The iMore show returns LIVE today with Peter Cohen and yours truly breaking down all the news of the week that you need to know.

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How to turn an old iPod classic into a new emergency boot drive for Mac

"Let no old yet still functional technology go to waste" is the motto of any good McGyver-class geek, which is what makes the idea of using an abandoned but still capable iPod classic as an emergency boot drive for the Mac so appealing. Chris Breen of Macworld:

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Latest metrics say Apple is either doomed by newbies, or poised to kill with pros

Metrics are fun. You can pretty much read into them whatever you like. The latest example if this CIRP study, as reported by Ina Fried of AllThingsD:

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Which "missing" feature do you want the most on the next iPhone [Poll]

Which "missing" feature do you want the most on the next iPhone?

Which "missing" feature do you want the most on the next iPhone? It's written "missing" very deliberately, since specifically we're talking about features that some of the latest competitor devices have brought with them to market recently. Apple doesn't make a habit of 'playing catchup' but there's a bunch of cool stuff out there that a whole lot of us would love to see included in the next iPhone.

Motorola, for example, has recently introduced a handful of devices that all pack some pretty interesting things. The new Droid Maxx, for example, has a great honkin' battery stuffed in the back that promises a full 48-hour battery life. Then, along came their Moto X with an always listening functionality for its voice-controlled, natural language interface. We've previously run polls to gather your thoughts on all of these, but now we want to see how they rank alongside some other cool features.

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Apple, Amazon and how they're more alike than apart

Following up on the thesis that Amazon manages profit the way Apple manages supply chain, here's a look at where both companies are more similar than they are different. From Horace Dediu at Asymco:

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LG G2 brings all the specs to the yard, forgets interface designers again

The LG G2 has just been officially announced, and given how many high end components LG is capable of producing, it's no wonder this thing, spec wise, seems not only top notch, but a real beauty. Here's what Phil Nickinson of Android Central had to say from the event floor:

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Apple, Amazon, and the weaponization of profit

Apple makes more money than any other company save those with oligopoly control of limited fossil fuel resources, yet they're perpetually punished by Wall Street and called doomed by financial-not-really-analysts. Amazon has seldom made a dime on paper and yet they're the darling of Wall Street and can do no wrong with market makers. Yet both are among the most successful companies in recent history. Why the difference? Benedict Evens on Twitter:

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The problem with how AMBER Alerts are handled on iOS and mobile

The emergency alert system in iOS is meant to save lives, either the lives of children with the AMBER Alert system, or lives in general with natural disaster warnings. However, not all alerts are created equally, and unfortunately, not all iOS alerts are as informative or interactive as they need to be. Craig Hockenberry has broken down the problems with the AMBER alert received by many Californian's last night. From Furbo:

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