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Comment Re:Reference devices? (Score 2) 125

They probably mean that they will support hardware specific to that phone. In the past they have always provided APIs that anyone can use for things like the fingerprint sensor and camera features. Maybe they are planning to allow some stuff that is unique to their phones and not supported elsewhere.

My guess would be it is related to VR and 3D mapping.

Comment Re:Money (Score 4, Insightful) 484

They probably threatened to put the factory somewhere else, so Ireland thought it was a choice between getting nothing and getting 6500 jobs and a small amount of tax.

The thing is, the EU doesn't play the "race to the bottom" game. The whole point of having a single market is that rules are harmonized and the playing field is level for everyone. No member state can offer terms like this to get business, which is ultimately bad for everyone except Apple anyway.

Comment Re:Money (Score 2) 484

Thing is, the letter linked in the summary admits that Apple needed an European base of operations, so chances are they would have built one in Ireland (being a source of relatively cheap by skilled labour in the 80s) even without the tax-dodge incentive. At the very least, it would have had to have been somewhere in the EU, and back then Eastern European countries were not members (the wall was still up).

Comment Re:'Refutes' or 'denies'? (Score 5, Insightful) 484

The letter they posted is signed Tim Cook, and does indeed refuse the EU's claims, however it contains obvious lies of omission and seems to demonstrate a complete lack of understanding of how the EU works.

The Commissionâ(TM)s move is unprecedented and it has serious, wide-reaching implications. It is effectively proposing to replace Irish tax laws with a view of what the Commission thinks the law should have been.

No Tim, the EU member states have all agreed on some basic ground rules for taxation so that they can have a free market without any of them gaining a competitive advantage. It's hardly a shock to anyone that the extremely advantageous tax arrangements in Ireland were incompatible and the EU has been warning Ireland of this for many years. In fact Ireland changed its laws in 2010 to block companies from doing what Apple did, and as I'm sure you are aware even Apple will have to find a new corporate structure by 2020 or start paying that tax anyway.

The letter is pathetic. It makes out that Apple did Ireland a massive favour by opening a factory and bringing jobs, ignoring that it only did so in order to dodge billions of Euros worth of tax that rightfully belonged to the Irish people.

Comment Re:I hate Apple, but no (Score 4, Informative) 484

EU which has overall governance over Ireland

That's not correct. In this case the EU can't actually force Ireland to collect the tax, but they will because they want to remain part of the club and not face other sanctions. The EU doesn't actually have powers to govern Ireland directly, although Irish law does recognize EU institutions.

Comment Re:Drones might have weapons. (Score 1) 612

Legal question. Is it okay to blow stuff up on your property in the US? I guess it varies from state to state, and there is probably some limit to allow for accidentally exploding cans of soda etc, but let's for the sake of argument say a suspicious perambulator/stroller and whatever you need to safely destroy the IED that might be hidden in it.

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