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Global Wine Shortage; Syria Fires Deputy Prime Minister; Early College Application Problems; Did Your Phone Die On Purpose?; Cardinals' Plane Grounded

Aired October 30, 2013 - 06:30   ET


MICHAELA PEREIRA, CNN ANCHOR: Global wine production fell more than 5 percent last year, primarily due to bad weather in Argentina and France. Analysts say there's little reason to believe production will pick up anytime soon.

Don't you think the sequester could have been blamed for this or the shutdown?

KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: Someone will probably --

PEREIRA: Because we drink more because we're upset by it.

BOLDUAN: I was wondering.

PEREIRA: Do you think there's a correlation?

BOLDUAN: It might be a chicken and an egg problem. I was wondering if just more people are drinking wine or if it was actually a production problem.

PEREIRA: Supply, yes. I don't know.

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: Notice Italia, no slowdown.

BOLDUAN: Italy to the rescue.


CUOMO: Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

PEREIRA: No, thank you.

BOLDUAN: You actually can say, you're welcome.

CUOMO: That's right.

BOLDUAN: All right. Coming up next on NEW DAY: this is a very stressful time for every family with a child trying to get into college, all watching their grades, filling out applications, adding to the stress now -- a problem with the very system designed to make the process easier. That story, next.

CUOMO: Plus, a surprising allegation against Apple. Is it designing its phones to get slower as they get older? So you have to buy a new one? Is there anything to prove the allegation? It's coming up.

I am getting slower as I get older.


BOLDUAN: Let's go around the world now, starting in Syria where a key government official has been fired for trying to talk to the West about ending the civil war there.

Mohammed Jamjoom is covering it from Beirut.


MOHAMMED JAMJOOM, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Syria's deputy prime minister, Qadri Jamil, was fired from his post on Tuesday after leaving Syria and meeting with U.S. officials in Geneva. Now, Jamil seemed mystified by his firing, telling a Lebanese television station that he was in Geneva to try to kick-start the Geneva 2 peace talks, that there seemed to be some confusion with his role as a government official and his role as part of the internal opposition in Syria, and that he still hadn't been informed officially of his firing.

Back to you, Kate.


BOLDUAN: All right. Mohammed, thank you very much.

To China now and the hunt for the people behind in a deadly car crash in Tiananmen Square. The Chinese are calling it a terrorist attack.

David McKenzie has that.


DAVID MCKENZIE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Police are searching for several suspects that appear to be linked to the deadly crash and ball of fire right at the heart of Beijing in Tiananmen Square.

Now, the names are from the Uyghur Muslim minority in the west. It appears you could be looking at this as an orchestrated attack rather than an accident. And because of the location in the most sensitive part of China, this event is deeply embarrassing for China's leaders.

Kate, back to you.


BOLDUAN: All right. Thanks so much, David.

And in Turkey, a new tunnel is providing a vital link between two continents connecting Europe and Asia by train for the very first time.

John Defterios is in Istanbul.


JOHN DEFTERIOS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Here in the Asian side of Istanbul, history was made. The first underwater designed to link Europe and Asia is now open, happens to be the deepest in the world. It's a colossal project, costing $4.5 billion, covering nearly 40 miles. Istanbul is known for its snarled traffic, 14 million citizens. The hope is now that 1.5 million will leave the roads and go on the rails.

Kate, back to you.


BOLDUAN: That is impressive. John, thank you very much.

CUOMO: So, it's a stressful time of year.


CUOMO: Not just the holidays coming, but it's college application time. And it turns out one of the things that's supposed to make the process easier is doing the opposite. Talking about the so-called Common App used by hundreds of colleges, now online only and rife with technical glitches. And guess what? The deadline to apply is fast approaching.

Let's turn to CNN's Chris Frates, the newest member of CNN Investigations. He's in Washington. He has more.

Welcome, my friend. Tell us what we've learned.

CHRIS FRATES, CNN INVESTIGATIONS CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Chris. If someone said to you this morning, man I had trouble trying to logon to that website, you'd probably think they were talking about the Obamacare mess. But for kids applying for college this fall, they're probably talking about Common App, a website used by hundreds of schools that's been riddled with problems.


FRATES (voice-over): The most stressful part getting to these beautiful campuses is this, the dreaded college application process. It's a ritual so fraught with anxiety that it's become a cultural touchstone.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Gymnastics national champion. My father is Cuban and in a wheelchair.

FRATES: And for this year's grab of high school seniors, there's even more angst than usual. A website designed to make the process easier is plagued by glitches, like login errors, lagging credit card payments and delayed applications.

The Common Application was designed to let students apply to multiple schools by filling out a single application. This year, the Common App retired its paper version and went exclusively online. And that's when the problems began.

DANIEL WOLFE, HIGH SCHOOL SENIOR: It can be stressful knowing they're having technical problems. I'm sure I'll get through it.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Login was unsuccessful.

FRATES: Common App estimates this year about 800,000 students will submit millions of applications to more than 500 schools. From Alaska Pacific University to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and even Harvard. Common App was supposed to make an already stressful college application process easier.

NANCY GRIESEMER, COLLEGE ADMISSIONS CONSULTANT: The kids who are applying want to make sure their applications get in, in a timely manner, and look good.

And so far, they're having problems and it's stressing them out.

FRATES: One part of Common App that is working well, their Facebook page. Here, Students and parents are venting their frustration.

"My daughter still cannot login. Help please!"

Common App did not respond to multiple interview requests but in a statement to CNN they said, "As we approach the busy deadline season, we are fully committed to ensuring complete and timely review of applications for all Common Application members, particularly those with November 1st deadlines."

But at Catholic University, they've gone old school, retreating to the basement to scan hundreds of applications into their system.

CHRISTINE MICA, DEAN OF ADMISSIONS, CATHOLIC UNIVERSITY OF AMEIRCA: Universities around the country rely on the Common Application. So, we're on their side. We need them to fix this. And we do hope that there is a resolution and fix to this very soon.


FRATES: Chris and Kate, the one thing that universities are telling us is kids should not panic. They won't be penalized if their applications are delayed because they've been using Common App.

In fact, more than 50 schools have pushed back this Friday's deadline to give students more time to get their applications filed.

BOLDUAN: The silver lining you can take out of this, because there are a lot of families sweating this morning they can't get on Common App right now.

FRATES: Absolutely.

CUOMO: Good information to have those, especially about them extending the deadline.

Chris, appreciate the reporting. Welcome. FRATES: Thank you.

BOLDUAN: Absolutely.

All right. Let's get back over to Indra. She has her eye on a very big storm that could be causing a lot of trouble through many parts of the country right now.

INDRA PETERSONS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Yes. I mean, this is a big system we're kind of watching for a couple of days. Today is going to feel mild in New England and Northeast. But that will change as this system makes its way across.

Now, today, if you're in Portland, about 51 will be your high. A lot of upper 50s today. Also going to be out in Providence, upper 57 there, and New York City looking for 62.

But, now, let's talk about that change that will make its way across the country. We're looking at this big system, it's the one that dumped heavy snow yesterday, anywhere from Montana, Wyoming, even in through Colorado. And today, all that cold air from that system is going to make its way farther east and combine with warm, moist air. Every time we see that, we get our severe weather risk.

So, we're really talking about anywhere today from Kansas City, down through central Texas. Look for strong thunderstorms especially as we go through the afternoon. Isolated hail could be out there, even the threat of an isolated tornado. So, that's going to be the concern.

We're also talking about heavy rain in short periods of time. So, anywhere from about three to five inches of rain, if you're between pretty much Dallas and Houston. About one to two inches pretty much anywhere else, even extending all the way to the Ohio Valley, the one to two inches into through the Quad Cities as well today. So, those are going to be your heavy spots. We'd be looking for flash flooding as a concern there as well.

Now tomorrow, the system for Halloween makes its way farther to the east. So, with that, again, we're talking Ohio Valley, all the way through Houston I should say. We're looking for that threat pretty much for severe weather. So, that's going to be the concern, not just rain, but also some strong winds.

I mean, the system has really developed into strong enough winds that are really gusting to about 40 and even 50 miles per hour. Today, alone, if you're in through Dallas, Oklahoma, look for winds gusting through 30 miles per hour, same thing up to Kansas City, close to 40 miles an hour. Tomorrow, you're going to see those winds strengthen especially through the Ohio Valley and even through upstate New York.

So, pretty big system each day, kind of affecting a different section of the country.

BOLDUAN: Those are some strong gusts they're looking at right there.

PETERSONS: Very strong ones. Yes. BOLDUAN: Thanks, Indra.


CUOMO: All right. We're going to take a break here on NEW DAY.

When we come back, it's pretty sneaky if it's true. The allegation of big tech company intentionally designing its products to slow down as they get older so you have to buy a new one. We'll take a look.

PEREIRA: And the innocence of a child. Looks like he's got a new friend in a very high place. The little fellow who charmed the pope is our must-see moment, coming up next.


PEREIRA: Aggressive music. We're going to sign in like go deep on something here. I kind of love this.

Welcome back to NEW DAY. It's bold. It's a suggestion of conspiracy at Apple. A column in the "New York Times" says that just maybe, maybe Apple might have planned that sluggishness and shortened battery life on your aging elderly iPhone. They could be timing it so you're forced to get a new one. You've wondered this, haven't you?

Catherine Rampell wrote that column. She is an economics reporter for "The New York Times." This is kind of a bold suggestion, and I kind of appreciate you for putting something on paper that I think many of us have wondered about, a suspicion.

CATHERINE RAMPELL, ECONOMICS REPORTER, NEW YORK TIMES: Yes. I mean, certainly, I've gotten a lot of e-mails from readers, both pro and con, but many of which have said, "I've been wondering about this. I thought it was my imagination."

PEREIRA: So what is your theory?

RAMPELL: So my theory is that yes, phones do seem to slow down around the time that a new operating system comes out. And it's ambiguous about whether Apple plans it deliberately. That is the new operating system, new software that comes out is designed with the capabilities of the new hardware in mind which it has a faster processor, which can do a lot more fancy things, and it just -- it could be that it so happens that that happens to slow down the older phones.

So it's ambiguous. It's very hard to infer motive is what I'm saying. You know, you can have a lot of conspiracy theories about whether Apple is doing this deliberately.

PEREIRA: But it could be benign as well.

RAMPELL: It could be benign. That doesn't mean that it's not going to upset a lot of consumers and encourage them to upgrade. The question is, you know, is Apple even incentivized, basically, to make you want to throw away your old phone and buy a new one? And again, you know, you could kind of read that situation both ways. PEREIRA: Could you, because it kind of seems --

RAMPELL: Well, so if -- like I said, I write about economics. And economists would say that if you're a monopoly and if you don't face any sort of competition, yes, this is what you want to do. You want to force people to junk their old phones so that you can harvest more sales out of them when they've already become your customer.

If you face competition it's not so clear because the problem is, what if in the process of, you know, degrading the quality of the older product, you annoy your customer so much that they switch to a competitor? And that's the question. How competitive is the smartphone market and you know, reasonable people can disagree about that.

BOLDUAN: You're raising very good questions, questions that a lot of people have thought about at home, I'm sure, but also provocative questions. Have you gotten any response from Apple about this?

RAMPELL: I called them before the piece ran, and they declined to comment.

BOLDUAN: Which is kind of par for the course with them. They often don't comment --

RAMPELL: I mean, there -- this is the other issue. It's hard with any company when they're doing things that kind of -- planned obsolescence to figure out what's going on. Apple is particularly secretive, you know?

BOLDUAN: Is planned obsolescence a technical term? When I read that in your piece --


RAMPELL: Yes. Actually, so it dates back to the Great Depression. At least, that's the first known use of it. And the idea was that, you know, nobody is sending money during the Great Depression.

And there's this guy who I think was a real estate broker at that time who said, you know, the way to get people to spend more money, to buy more stuff is to basically put an expiration date on everything they own. You know that chair you're sitting can't use it tomorrow. You have to buy a new one. So the idea was --

PEREIRA: Disposable stuff.

RAMPELL: Yes. Exactly. If you set expiration dates on things artificially. People have to buy more stuff, and that will, you know, stimulate the economy.

CUOMO: I don't know -- I know about planned obsolescence, but I don't know. I'm sitting here as a lawyer and I'm hearing what you're saying. I've been using the word allegation all morning. Suggestion without proof. And I don't hear the proof. I feel that you are fueling these paranoias we have. If you had cited the change in the shape of the charging port, you would had me (ph). Why do they change the shape? It's only to sell you all those stuff. But I don't know that it makes sense that, you know, as your phone gets older like your blender, like your car, things start to not perform the way they did anymore and the innovations may be more powerful.


Yes. Like my knees. You know, this happens. So, couldn't it just be that that things get better, faster, more powerful? And as we innovate, the older things don't keep up.

RAMPELL: Yes. I mean, that's certainly true. And, I'm sure Apple will say, look, you know, things -- innovations come on the scene and people want new things. But on the other hand, consumers don't necessarily know when they buy the iPhone 4S that two years from now, not only will it, you know, not be as cool as whatever new product comes out, in this case, the 5S, I guess, or the 5C, but it will be like unusable, which is what the problem was for me when my iPhone 4 --

BOLDUAN: So, a quick question before --


BOLDUAN: Are you still buying Apple products or --


RAMPELL: Yes, I am.

PEREIRA: She's hooked on them just like the rest of us.


RAMPELL: Actually, after I wrote this column, I gave in and I upgraded, and I now have a 5S.


RAMPELL: I have a iPhone 4 at home --

CUOMO: Which now will mysteriously stop working because you wrote this piece.



RAMPELL: I think Apple knows better than that.

PEREIRA: We want to hear what the post (ph) at home because I know you have theories at home. So, tweet us #NEWDAY. Also, just -- I don't think this is isolated to just iPhones. I think there's other phone companies, if you look at -- I'm not going to say the maker of my phone, but it could be something that's happening to all gadgets. Catherine Rampell, thanks so much for this. We appreciate it, with "The New York Times."

You want to see our "Must-See Moment," it's kind of sweet. You're going to love it.


PEREIRA (voice-over): Pope Francis taking the biblical quote, "Let the children come to him and do not hinder them to heart." An adorable little boy, look at this, stole the show at the pontiff's annual meeting with families at the Vatican over the weekend.

He was taking questions, the pope was, from followers when the little guy wanders up to him, hugs him, tugs on his robe, inspects his papal adornments, almost sits on his lap and you know what's so wonderful about this pope? He did not seem to mind at all, seemed to encourage it. Apparently, a security guard even tried to lure the little boy away with candy. That didn't work. He stood his ground. That's my new pal.

CUOMO (voice-over): There's nothing the Catholic Church could want more than this image right now. This pope was all about reaching out, remembering the mission of Catholicism.


PEREIRA (on-camera): Absolutely.

CUOMO (on-camera): And especially given all that prevails, you know, and controversies recently.

PEREIRA: We thought you'd like that.

CUOMO: It's good stuff. Good stuff for them. And a lucky little boy. He's going to have some memory, huh?


BOLDUAN: That's a picture I'd want to have.

CUOMO: Coming up on NEW DAY, we're just about two hours away now from a real beat down for Health and Human Services secretary, Kathleen Sebelius. Why? She's heading to Capitol Hill, going to try to explain what's happened with the roll-out, and it's probably not going to go well. We will bring you a take on what's about to happen and the latest information on when the administration may have known.

BOLDUAN: Also ahead, take a look at this barge. Why are we talking about a barge? It's floating in San Francisco Bay but what may be on board has the tech world guessing. Stay with us.


CUOMO: Did you watch the NBA first games last night? Boy, everybody looks big and strong and good. Lebron and the Heat got things started last night by raising their second straight championship banner to the -- before playing the Bulls.

BOLDUAN: -- start the season.

CUOMO: All right.


CUOMO: This is a strong message and that followed through the whole game. Let's bring in Andy Scholes for this morning's "Bleacher Report." Boy, the heat looked good. Derrick Rose, what did you think?

ANDY SCHOLES, BLEACHER REPORT: Well, you know what, I thought he looked good for his first game back. He might have had little jitters after missing all of last season. But you know, last night, all about the Heat. They're the favorites to win it all again this year. And before they begin their quest for a three-peat, they celebrated last year's championship won last time.

They got to raise that championship banner again for the second straight year. And they received another fancy ring, 242 diamonds in this year's version. That's bling. Once the game got going, the Heat were in championship form. They jumped out to a big lead in the first half. Bulls fans, as you said, Chris, excited to see Derrick Rose back in action.

He looks good, but he did only scored 12 points. He struggled from the field. The Heat would win the opener 107-95.

So, game six of the World Series is tonight. And getting to Boston for the game turned out to be a travel nightmare for the Cardinals. Mechanical problems kept the red bird's plane on the ground and the players stranded on the tarmac for more than seven hours last night. The team finally boarded a new plane and arrived in Boston shortly after 11:00 p.m.

Now, fans are paying big bucks to see Big Papi and the Red Sox and potentially make history tonight. Tickets for tonight's game sold for more than $12,000 on step up (ph). Standing room only tickets are going for close to 1,000 bucks. And the tickets are so expensive because Red Sox haven't clinched a World Series title at Fenway Park since 1918.

And guys, if the Red Sox Want to be popping champagne bottles off tonight, they're going to have to do something that no other team has been able to do and that beat Cardinals young stud pitcher, Michael Wacha. He's a perfect 4-0 this post-season.

BOLDUAN: I'm sorry. My brain stopped. Did you say the ticket was $12,000?

SCHOLES: $12,000. Could be sports history tonight, you know? World Series at Fenway Park. Hadn't seen it clenched since 1918. Almost 100 years.

CUOMO: Can't put a price on history. Yes, you can. $12,000. (LAUGHTER)

BOLDUAN: Thanks so much, Andy. We'll talk to you later.

All right. We're now close to the top of the hour which means it is time for the top news.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This initial experience has not lived up to our expectations or the expectations of the American people and it is not acceptable.

CUOMO: In the hot seat. Kathleen Sebelius facing her critics this morning. How early were her people warned about the Obamacare roll- out problems? CNN has new information this morning.

BOLDUAN: Super soaker. A Halloween storm threatening the holiday for millions. Tornados across the country's midsection today as rain, wind and floods move east.

PEREIRA: A lifesaving stop. The amazing moment caught on tape. This bus driver who literally talks a woman off a ledge. He speaks out this morning.

CUOMO: Your NEW DAY starts right now.

ANNOUNCER: What you need to know --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Why did we not know? We are the intelligence committee. There will be changes.

ANNOUNCER: What you just have to see --


ANNOUNCER: This is "New Day" with Chris Cuomo, Kate Bolduan, and Michaela Pereira.


CUOMO: Good morning. Welcome back to NEW DAY. It's Wednesday, October 30th, seven o'clock in the east.

New this morning, German officials demanding answers from national security officials at the White House. And you know what, they pretty much got them from the nation's top spy master who testified on Capitol Hill acknowledging the U.S. spies on its allies and strongly defended the practice. We'll have the latest in a live report.

BOLDUAN: And in California, a funeral for the 13-year-old boy that was shot by police while carrying a toy gun. But the protests are just beginning, some demanding the officer involved be charged with murder. But is that fair? We'll examine this.

PEREIRA: And then, a big mystery, and we do love a good mystery on NEW DAY. Not one but two secret barges floating off of San Francisco and off Maine. What could they be? We'll tell you why only Google knows.