Here are your Apple rumors and AAPL news items for today:
Availability: Mac sales are up this year as Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) appears to have finally ramped up iMac production high enough to meet demand, AllThingsD notes. Industry research firm NPD says that Mac sales increased 31% in January, compared to last year. Analyst Gene Munster attributes the sales jump to increased supplies of its re-designed iMacs. The new, super-slim iMacs were unveiled last year, but production problems with its Asian manufacturing partners kept supplies of the new machines limited, hurting sales. CEO Tim Cook conceded that the supply problems dampened iMac sales during the holiday quarter. While the higher sales suggest that Apple has improved its inventory of new iMacs, its online store still shows shipping times of between two and four weeks for the iMacs, which implies some level continuing supply constraint.
Another Outlet: Apple products have begun to appear on Staples (NASDAQ:SPLS) online store, CNET notes. Earlier this month executives from the office supply retailer announced, via Twitter, that the chain would begin carrying Apple products. Currently available on Staples’ online store are accessories for iMacs, iPads and iPads, including cables, covers and keyboards. Customers can also purchase Apple TVs and Time Capsules. Apple items are expected to begin appearing at about half of Staples brick-and-mortar retail outlets in the coming weeks. Apple has retailing partnerships with a number of chains, including Best Buy (NYSE:BBY), Target (NYSE:TGT) and Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT), all of which sell iOS devices in addition to accessories. However, it remains unclear if Staples will eventually sell iPads, iPods and iMacs, or iPhones.
Game Issue: Apple will provide a $5 iTunes gift card to parents who claims their children purchased in-game extras through the App Store without their knowledge, CNN notes. The payments are part of a settlement the company has negotiated to a 2011 class action lawsuit. In the action, parents alleged that children ran up large bills while playing free games on iOS devices by purchasing in-game items that came with real world prices. Under the settlement, parents who can document significant bills will get larger credits or refunds. The deal will be submitted to the court for review and approval on Friday. The overall financial cost of the settlement was not disclosed.
For more about the company, check out our previous Apple Rumors stories.