Mapping iOS 8, loyal Apples, and a Haunted Empire

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What’s cooking in the pot of Apple news this fine Tuesday morning? I’m glad you asked. Here are some of the stories that caught our interest.

iOS 8: Apple polishes Maps data, adds public transit directions service

Most of the United States has switched over to Daylight Savings Time, which means we’re that much closer to summer and Apple’s annual developers conference. As such, it’s no surprise we’re hearing more rumors and speculation about iOS 8, which is likely to debut at the conference. On tap today: 9to5Mac’s Mark Gurman with a lengthy report on iOS 8’s purported changes to Maps. Gurman’s birdies provided him with such detailed information about potential transit features that 9to5 was able to mock up screenshots—though I wouldn’t be surprised to see differences in the final version, given that WWDC is still a few months away.

Apple Continues Pursuit Of IT And Education With Improvements To Its ‘Secret’ Loyalty Pricing

Did you know that Apple has a “secret” loyalty program? Me neither. Luckily, we have TechCrunch reporter Matthew Panzarino on-hand to spell out the details (and recent changes) to said program. Discounts kick in once your business spends more than $5000 in a calendar year, and they improve if you spend more than $35,000 or $200,000; recent improvements to the program include discount increases across the board for accessories, iPads, and unlocked iPhones.

Haunted Empire review – great title, shame about the contents

Wall Street Journal reporter Yukari Iwatani Kane’s new book about Apple, Haunted Empire: Apple After Steve Jobs, has hit the streets—but The Guardian isn’t impressed. “… a terrific book title,” writes Guardian author Charles Arthur. “Pity the book doesn’t live up to it.” I haven’t yet read Haunted Empire, but Arthur’s piece provides a pretty vivid and thorough overview of what to expect.

Norman Foster on super-size buildings and the Apple campus

In March, architect Norman Foster chatted with Architectural Record about creating super-size buildings; unsurprisingly, Apple’s in-production 12,000-person campus is the focus of much of the interview. Foster reveals the inspiration for the campus as well as some of the plans for dividing up the ring to work efficiently as an office space.

iTunes Radio already 3rd most popular music streamer

According to a new annual report from Edison Research, iTunes Radio has eclipsed Spotify to become the third most popular audio streaming service in the United States. Pandora still has a 31 percent share of the space, with iHeartRadio listed at 9 percent, iTunes Radio at 8 percent, and Spotify at 6 percent. It’s important to note that this survey was limited to the U.S. and doesn’t include Spotify’s large international base; the service has yet to take commanding hold in the States since its launch in mid-2011. Not included in the survey is Beats Music, which launched at the beginning of the year and has received a fair amount of acclaim from the tech media and users alike.

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