Here are your Apple rumors and AAPL news items for today:
iDomestic: Sources tell 9to5Mac that Apple (AAPL) is doing more in the smart home field than just providing a software platform. At its Worldwide Developers Conference earlier this month, Apple unveiled HomeKit, which is aimed at allowing iPad and iPhone owners to remotely control compliant lighting, heating and entertainment devices in their homes. HomeKit permits external manufacturers to create products that would work with the software. However, sources say that Apple has put together its own internal team of technicians tasked with developing smart home hardware that would fit into Apple’s ecosystem. Sources indicate that Apple considers home automation to be a nascent, but critical market. According to the report, Apple has already moved “beyond the exploratory phase of development” of home automation products, though no details are yet available as to what sort of products are being developed. Given Apple’s recent acquisition of Beats Electronics, the iPhone-maker could be developing smart audio systems or home automation control panels. Arch-rival Google (GOOG) has recently announced its own home automation plans. Earlier this year, Google purchased Nest Labs, maker of a smart thermostat.
Dropped: On Friday, Apple announced that it has halted future development of its popular image-editing application Aperture, ZDNet notes. Going forward, Apple will concentrate on its new Photos app and the iCloud Photo Library. Aperture fans will be relieved to know that the application will at least be compatible with the upcoming OS X Yosemite for Macs. Apple will also continue to develop Logic Pro and Final Cut Pro. The move has left many photo buffs irked. Some say that Photos and iCloud Photo Library are insufficient as a replacement for Aperture. Apple also announced that iPhoto, its image management application for OS X, will also not receive future updates.
Seen: On Sunday, Apple CEO Tim Cook made an appearance at San Francisco’s Gay Pride Parade, the Daily Mail notes. A large contingent of Apple employees took part in the event. While Cook did not march in the parade, he posed for photos with a number of employees — which were quickly posted to social media — and later tweeted: “Congrats to 5000 Apple employees/families who attended today’s Pride parade. Inclusion inspires innovation.” As CEO, Cook has personally championed legislation before Congress that would bar discrimination against the gays and lesbians in the workplace. His appearance at the annual San Francisco event comes just two days after a CNBC anchor caused a stir by naming Cook as an openly gay CEO. Cook is notoriously private and has not publicly discussed his personal life. Speaking of the parade, an Apple spokesperson said: “Apple believes equality and diversity make us stronger, and we’re proud to support our employees and their friends and families in this weekend’s celebration.” Other tech giants, including Google and Facebook (FB) also took part in gay pride events over the weekend.
For more about the company, check out our previous Apple Rumors stories.