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Apple Watch launch to give new face to wearable fitness trackers

BY Michael Johnsen

 

CUPERTINO, Calif. — Apple on Tuesday unveiled its much anticipated Apple Watch featuring revolutionary new technologies and a pioneering user interface that could change the face of wearable health devices with a specially designed and engineered Digital Crown that provides an innovative way to scroll, zoom and navigate. 
 
“Apple introduced the world to several category-defining products, the Mac, iPod, iPhone and iPad,” stated Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “And once again Apple is poised to captivate the world with a revolutionary product that can enrich people’s lives. It’s the most personal product we’ve ever made.”
 
Apple Watch introduces comprehensive health and fitness apps that can help people lead healthier lives, the company stated. Apple Watch includes a groundbreaking Activity app designed to help motivate users to be more active throughout the day, and an all-new Workout app designed to provide the metrics needed during dedicated workout sessions. Apple Watch uses the accelerometer, a built-in heart rate sensor, GPS and Wi-Fi from an iPhone to provide a comprehensive picture of a person's daily activity. The Activity app measures three separate aspects of movement: calories burned, brisk activity and how often users stand up during the day. The Workout app provides goal-setting and pacing during popular session-based workouts, such as running and cycling. The companion Fitness app on iPhone collects activity data so users can see their activity history in greater detail. Apple Watch uses this history to suggest personal, realistic goals, reward fitness milestones and keep users motivated.
 
Apple Watch also will enable users to communicate in new ways by sending and receiving messages, answering calls to the iPhone, and with Digital Touch, sending something as personal as their own heartbeat. 
 
Apple Watch will be available in three distinct collections: Apple Watch, Apple Watch Sport and Apple Watch Edition.
 
 
 
 
 

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Walgreens to be one of first retailers to enable Apple Pay

BY Michael Johnsen

CUPERTINO, Calif. — Apple today announced Apple Pay, a new category of service that will transform mobile payments with an easy, secure and private way to pay. Walgreens and Duane Reade are some of the first retail outlets to welcome the new pay technology. 
 
Apple Pay works with iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus through an NFC antenna design, a dedicated chip called the Secure Element and the security and convenience of Touch ID. Apple Pay is easy to set up — users can add their credit or debit card on file from their iTunes Store account. Apple Pay also will work with the newly announced Apple Watch, extending Apple Pay to more than 200 million owners of iPhone 5, iPhone 5c and iPhone 5s worldwide.
 
In addition to Walgreens and Duane Reade, some of the nation’s leading retailers that will support Apple Pay include Bloomingdale’s, Disney Store and Walt Disney World Resort, Macy’s, McDonald’s, Sephora, Staples, Subway and Whole Foods Market. Apple Watch also will work at the more than 220,000 merchant locations across the United States that have contactless payment enabled. Apple Pay also is able to make purchases through apps in the App Store.
 
Apple Pay supports credit and debit cards from the three major payment networks, American Express, MasterCard and Visa, issued by the most popular banks including Bank of America, Capital One Bank, Chase, Citi and Wells Fargo, representing 83% of credit card purchase volume in the United States. 
 
“Security and privacy are at the core of Apple Pay. When you’re using Apple Pay in a store, restaurant or other merchant, cashiers will no longer see your name, credit card number or security code, helping to reduce the potential for fraud,” said Eddy Cue, Apple SVP of Internet Software and Services. “Apple doesn’t collect your purchase history, so we don’t know what you bought, where you bought it or how much you paid for it. And if your iPhone is lost or stolen, you can use Find My iPhone to quickly suspend payments from that device.”
 
Apple Pay will change the way you pay. When you add a credit or debit card with Apple Pay, the actual card numbers are not stored on the device nor on Apple servers. Instead, a unique Device Account Number is assigned, encrypted and securely stored in the Secure Element on your iPhone or Apple Watch. Each transaction is authorized with a one-time unique number using your Device Account Number, and instead of using the security code from the back of your card, Apple Pay creates a dynamic security code to securely validate each transaction.
 
“JPMorgan Chase has been pleased to collaborate on Apple Pay to create a better, faster and safer payments system, which puts the customer first, creating an exceptional customer experience for consumers and merchants. Everyone wins,” said Jamie Dimon, chairman and CEO, JPMorgan Chase.
 
Online shopping in apps with iPhone also is as simple as the touch of a finger. Users can pay for physical goods and services — including apparel, electronics, health and beauty products, tickets and more — with Touch ID. Checkout can happen with a single touch, so there’s no need to manually fill out lengthy account forms or type in shipping and billing information, and card details are kept private and are not shared with the online merchant. For example, quickly order grill accessories for a backyard BBQ from the Target app, easily request a ride with Uber without having to create an account first or avoid the lunch line by using Rapid Pick-Up and paying ahead in the Panera Bread app. Simply make your selection and when ready to buy, use Apple Pay to complete the transaction.
 
Starting in October with iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, Apple Pay will be available in the United States as a free update to iOS 8. Apple Pay will work in stores with iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus and Apple Watch. Apple Pay APIs will be available to developers in iOS 8 so they can enable purchasing physical goods within their apps on iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus.
 
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J.Fisher says:
Sep-12-2014 10:16 am

This is great news! Thanks to Walgreens for getting on board with new technologies!

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Walgreens, UN Foundation launch ‘Get a Shot. Give a Shot’ campaign

BY Michael Johnsen

DEERFIELD, Ill. — Walgreens and the United Nations Foundation on Tuesday announced the launch of the “Get a Shot. Give a Shot” campaign, a second-year collaboration to provide life-saving vaccines to children who need them most in developing countries. 
 
Now through Oct. 13, for every flu shot or other immunization administered at Walgreens pharmacies, Healthcare Clinic at select Walgreens or Duane Reade pharmacy in New York, Walgreens will donate the value of a life-saving vaccine through the Foundation’s Shot@Life campaign.
 
After Oct. 13 and continuing year-round, Walgreens will donate the value of a vaccine for each additional non-flu, CDC-recommended immunization the company administers as part of “Get a Shot. Give a Shot,” with an overall goal of 6 million life-saving vaccines, twice the number provided last year through the program with the help of Walgreens customers.
 
“'Get a Shot. Give a Shot’ truly demonstrates the value of public/private collaboration and creates a unique opportunity for our customers to play an important role in helping to protect millions of children in developing countries from vaccine-preventable diseases,” said Kermit Crawford, Walgreens president, pharmacy, health and wellness. “So many countries are seeing decreases in childhood mortality as a result of higher immunization rates for measles and other diseases. And we’re proud to expand our relationship with the UN Foundation to carry our purpose to help people get, stay and live well beyond the United States and to other parts of the world.”
 
“Vaccines are one of the most cost-effective ways to improve the lives of children in developing countries by protecting them from life-threatening diseases,” said Kathy Calvin, president and CEO of the UN Foundation. “With access to vaccines, families are healthier, economies are stronger and governments are more stable. By expanding our partnership with Walgreens, we can continue to help children reach their full potential, while creating more prosperous, resilient communities.”
 
“As some of the most trusted healthcare professionals in America, our pharmacists — along with Healthcare Clinic nurse practitioners — are providing unprecedented access to immunizations and other important preventive health and wellness services,” added Brad Wasson, Walgreens group VP pharmacy, health and wellness. “We continue to develop innovative programs and initiatives aimed at improving immunization rates, and it’s gratifying to see the impact Walgreens is making in the United States, and increasingly, across the globe.”
 
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