Apple today announced plans to introduce an Apple Immersive Video that features the best of the 2023 MLS Cup Playoffs. Apple says that this will be the first-ever sports film captured in Apple Immersive Video, and it will be viewable on the Vision Pro headset.

apple tv mls season pass
According to Apple, the MLS Playoffs were recorded in 8K 3D with a 180-degree field of view and Spatial Audio.

Coming soon, all Apple Vision Pro users can experience the best of the 2023 MLS Cup Playoffs with the first-ever sports film captured in Apple Immersive Video. Viewers will feel every heart-pounding moment in 8K 3D with a 180-degree field of view and Spatial Audio that transports them to each match.

The MLS Apple Immersive Video will be coming in the near future, and its upcoming launch was included in an announcement about the kickoff of the 2024 MLS season.

MLS Season Pass subscribers can watch Inter Miami CF and Real Salt Lake tonight at 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, with a special 90-minute version of MLS Countdown premiering at 6:30 p.m. Eastern Time.

MLS Season Pass is priced at $14.99 per month during the season or $99. Apple TV+ subscribers can get a discounted price of $12.99 per month or $79 for the season.

PlayStation account owners will soon be able to start using a passkey as an alternative to a password when logging into a PlayStation account on the web, in an app, or on a PlayStation device.

playstation passkey
Passkey integration is set to be introduced at some point today, and users will be able to log in and authenticate their accounts with Face ID, Touch ID, or a device passcode on an iPhone.

Passkeys are considered more convenient and secure than a traditional password, with sign-ins streamlined through biometric authentication. Passkeys are resistant to online attacks such as phishing because there's no password to steal and no one-time SMS code that can be intercepted.

Apple has supported passkeys since 2022, and passkeys are available on iOS 16 and later, iPadOS 16 and later, and macOS Ventura and later.

Many companies have been implementing support for passkeys, including Twitter, Google, PayPal, Best Buy, Microsoft, and eBay.

Apple today released a new update for Safari Technology Preview, the experimental browser Apple first introduced in March 2016. Apple designed the ‌Safari Technology Preview‌ to test features that may be introduced into future release versions of Safari.

Safari Technology Preview Feature
‌Safari Technology Preview‌ 189 includes fixes and updates for CSS, HTML, SVG, Web API, Web Inspector, WebAuthn, WebGL, and WebRTC.

The current ‌Safari Technology Preview‌ release is compatible with machines running macOS Ventura and macOS Sonoma, the latest version of macOS that Apple released in September 2023.

The ‌Safari Technology Preview‌ update is available through the Software Update mechanism in System Preferences or System Settings to anyone who has downloaded the browser. Full release notes for the update are available on the Safari Technology Preview website.

Apple's aim with ‌Safari Technology Preview‌ is to gather feedback from developers and users on its browser development process. ‌Safari Technology Preview‌ can run side-by-side with the existing Safari browser and while designed for developers, it does not require a developer account to download.

Apple has frustrated another app developer with arbitrary enforcement of its App Store rules, with Insight Timer CEO Christopher Plowman this week taking to LinkedIn and speaking with TechCrunch to complain about a frustrating experience with the ‌App Store‌ review team.

iOS App Store General Feature JoeBlue
Insight Timer is a meditation app that is subscription based. Customers pay $60 per year to access guided meditations, yoga classes, and other teacher-led courses. In addition to the subscription fee, Insight Timer accepts tips for teachers, which is what is at the heart of the dispute.

In 2022, Insight Timer started allowing app users to provide their teachers with digital donations or tips, and these donations were not initially subject to Apple's 30 percent fee on digital goods per Apple's ‌App Store‌ rules. Apple approved 47 Insight Timer updates that had the tipping functionality, but late last year, Apple's review team decided that these payments weren't considered tips, but digital goods purchases, which subjected them to the ‌App Store‌ in-app purchase fee.

App Store rule 3.2.1 vii says that apps can allow users to give a gift to another individual without using in-app purchase, so long as the gift is an optional choice and 100 percent of the funds go to the receiver of the gift. This was the case with Insight Timer, as it was not taking a cut of tips, but the individual to individual wording is what became murky, as well as an addendum to that rule that says a gift "connected to or associated at any point in time with receiving digital content" requires in-app purchases.

Apple took issue with Insight Timer accepting tips for live events and meditations, deciding that this money was for digital content. Plowman did not agree with Apple's assessment, and spent months negotiating. Apple did agree to allow tip links on teacher profile pages that are not subject to a 30 percent fee, but donations from live events and meditations are not considered tips. Apple's reasoning is that a one-to-one donation is a monetary gift, but a workshop or class with at least two people is digital content that's subject to a commission.

Plowman suggested that the meditation and yoga experiences are no more digital than renting an Airbnb or taking an Uber, and Apple does not collect fees from these kinds of purchases.

Just as homeowners don't pay 30% of their Airbnb income to Apple - imagine the outrage - teachers shouldn't have to pay Apple 30% of their donation income either. Many Insight Timer teachers are doctors, nurses and educators who return home from their day jobs to work in the evenings on Insight Timer for critical supplemental income. They give up their personal time recording audio replies to classroom questions, responding to user reviews, hosting live events, writing music, creating guided meditations and leading discussion groups. There's nothing 'digital' about these experiences no matter how much the definition is contorted. The more teachers work, the more they earn. The correlation is obvious and the term 'digital content' simply does not apply.

Of the $60 subscription fee that customers pay, Apple collects 15 to 30 percent. The remainder is split between Insight Timer and the teachers that participate on the platform, with each getting a 50 percent cut. Insight Timer earned $20 million in subscription revenue in 2023.

Apple required Insight Timer to comply with the ‌App Store‌ rules to submit further app updates, with a February deadline. Insight Timer complied this week, submitting an update that eliminates the tipping feature except on teacher profiles.

Plowman says that while he is frustrated, he believes Apple is willing to listen and that the company can be convinced to change. He asks that people share his story, but in a constructive manner.

The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not want consumers to purchase or use smart watches or smart rings that claim to measure blood glucose levels using non-invasive methods. In a safety warning shared today, the FDA says that smart devices that claim to check blood sugar without piercing the skin can lead to errors in diabetes management, including taking too much or too little medication.

Apple Watch Blood Glucose Monitoring Feature 2
No smart watch or smart ring that is intended to measure or estimate blood glucose values non-invasively has been authorized, cleared, or approved by the FDA. These non-invasive devices are different from continuous glucose monitoring devices (CGMs) that relay data through a smart watch app.

Apple is rumored to be working on a version of the Apple Watch that will be able to measure blood glucose non-invasively, but launch of such a device is still several years away. Apple has been exploring optical absorption spectroscopy using a laser to shine light under the skin to determine a person's blood glucose level, but as of 2023, Apple's work remained at a proof-of-concept stage.

As of right now, there are several low-cost smart watches and smart rings that claim to be able to monitor glucose levels without a skin prick or without integrating with a CGM device. The FDA says patients should avoid such devices, and doctors should warn patients about the risks of using unauthorized blood glucose measuring products.

Sellers of these smartwatches and smart rings claim their devices measure blood glucose levels without requiring people to prick their finger or pierce the skin. They claim to use non-invasive techniques. These smartwatches and smart rings do not directly test blood glucose levels.

These smartwatches and smart rings are manufactured by dozens of companies and sold under multiple brand names. This safety communication applies to any smartwatch or smart ring that claims to measure blood glucose without piercing the skin, regardless of manufacturer or brand.

The FDA says that it is working to ensure that manufacturers, distributors, and sellers do not illegally market unauthorized smart watches or smart rings that claim to measure blood glucose levels.

If Apple does end up releasing an Apple Watch that includes a sensor for non-invasive blood glucose monitoring, Apple will need to get FDA approval before it is allowed to sell it in the U.S. Other companies like Samsung are working on similar technology, but there is no proven and approved non-invasive blood sugar monitoring method on the market as of right now.

Tag: FDA

Astropad is launching a new version of the Rock Paper Pencil kit that it came out with last summer, bringing some notable improvements that will allow for a better paper-like writing experience on the iPad.

rock paper pencil
Rock Paper Pencil combines a screen protector and a unique Apple Pencil tip so that writing on the ‌iPad‌ feels like writing on a piece of paper. The new version of Rock Paper Pencil has a NanoCling Screen Protector that attaches to an ‌iPad‌ using static cling rather than a magnetic edge like the prior version.

Astropad says that NanoCling is stronger than magnets, and it provides a thinner bezel and a flatter surface on the ‌iPad‌. The NanoCling Screen Protector is 40 percent thinner than the magnetic version, so there are no gaps or ridges to contend with. The screen protector continues to be easily removable and reusable so you can take it off when you're not writing, and it is not adhesive so it leaves no residue.

The Pencil tip has also been redesigned to withstand heavy daily use. It has a wear-resistant copper alloy core and palladium coating, and it is able to hold up to more pressure. The Pencil tip has been slimmed down too, so it's equivalent to a standard 0.7mm ballpoint pen. The Rock Paper Pencil ships with two of the pencil tips and a protective storage sleeve for the screen protector.

Rock Paper Pencil can be purchased from the Astropad website for $40. It is compatible with the 11-inch iPad Pro and iPad Air, the third-generation 12.9-inch ‌iPad Pro‌ and later, the seventh-generation 10.2-inch ‌iPad‌ and later, the 10.9-inch ‌iPad‌, and the sixth-generation iPad mini.

Apple today released a new sports app for the iPhone that shows scores, stats, standings, upcoming games, betting odds, and more for a variety of leagues, such as the MLB, MLS, NBA, NHL, Premier League, and the NFL when its next season begins. For ongoing games, the app also displays real-time play-by-play information.

Apple Sports App Preview Feature
The app has a very basic interface with scoreboards, which you can personalize by following your favorite teams and leagues. Apple's services chief and noted sports enthusiast Eddy Cue said this simple design is intentional.

"We created Apple Sports to give sports fans what they want — an app that delivers incredibly fast access to scores and stats," said Cue, in Apple's press release announcing the app. "Apple Sports is available for free in the App Store, and makes it easy for users to stay up to date with their favorite teams and leagues."

Cue elaborated in an interview with Fast Company's Harry McCracken.

"We're not trying to have you spend 30 minutes on the app," said Cue. "You can spend five seconds to go look at the score, or you might spend 30 seconds, or you might spend three minutes going play-by-play because it's the end of the game. It's all about that. It's getting you in, giving you what you need, and doing it really quickly."

The Apple Sports app does not yet support Live Activities for viewing scores at a glance on the Lock Screen, or in the Dynamic Island on newer iPhones, but the Apple TV app offers this functionality for select leagues.

It remains to be seen how much the app will evolve in the future. Apple has pushed into live sports streaming over the past few years, including MLS Season Pass and MLB's Friday Night Baseball, and it is easy to envision the app becoming the ultimate hub for sports-related content. But for now, at least, Apple wants to keep things simple.

Apple Sports is available for free on the App Store in the U.S., the U.K., and Canada.

Apple today released Apple Sports, a brand new app that's designed to be a dedicated hub for sports fans to find real-time statistics, scores, lineup details, live betting odds, and more. This is Apple's first new app in some time, so we thought we'd give it a quick evaluation.

The Apple Sports app has a straightforward design that puts each person's favorite leagues and teams front and center. It's updated for all the leagues that are in season right now, including MLS, NBA, NCAA basketball, NHL, Premier League, and more.

As of right now, NFL and college football aren't available, but Apple is planning to add support for those and MLB, WNBA, and NWSL when those seasons begin.

You can see all pertinent stats for your favorite teams, along with play-by-plays and schedules so you don't miss anything. You can only get this app on the iPhone, and right now, Live Activities don't seem to be working, though support might be coming in the future.

Apple Sports is available in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Canada. It can be downloaded from the App Store. [Direct Link]

Apple's M2 Mac mini has a few notable discounts today on Amazon, with up to $109 off select versions of the computer. You can get the 256GB M2 Mac mini for $499.00, down from $599.00, and no coupon is required to see this deal.

mac mini greenNote: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of these vendors. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running.

The 512GB M2 Mac mini is available for $689.99 when you clip the on-page coupon, down from $799.00. Both of these are solid second-best prices on the Mac mini, and just about $10-$20 higher than the all-time low prices we've tracked in the past.

Note: You won't see the deal price until checkout.

Apple updated this Mac mini back in January 2023, marking the first big update to the lineup since the introduction of the M1 models in 2020. The 2023 models feature Apple's M2 and M2 Pro chips, but no major external design changes. As of writing, we aren't tracking any deals on the M2 Pro Mac mini.

Keep up with all of this week's best discounts on Apple products and related accessories in our dedicated Apple Deals roundup.

Related Roundup: Apple Deals

Apple's seventh-generation iPad mini is rumored to be launching this year, according to multiple sources. Keep reading to learn what the rumors say we can expect from Apple's small form factor tablet.

iPad Mini 6 YouTubed 2
The current iPad mini was released in September 2021, and includes a 8.3-inch display, a USB-C port, a Touch ID power button, an A15 Bionic chip, 5G support on cellular models, a 12-megapixel rear camera, second-generation Apple Pencil support, and more.

Display Changes

According to one rumor, the seventh-generation ‌iPad mini‌'s screen assembly will be rotated to reduce the effect of "jelly scrolling" that some users complain about with the current model when viewed in portrait orientation.

ipad mini 9
The term refers to a noticeable effect when scrolling vertically through text-based content like a webpage or document, where each line of text appears to tilt down towards the left of the screen as it passes by. The effect makes it look as though one side of the display is responding faster than the other when a finger drags to scroll the page.

Apple says the phenomenon is normal behavior for LCD iPads, but based on user feedback, it can appear more obvious and distracting when observed on the ‌‌‌iPad mini‌'s smaller screen‌‌. Apple reportedly plans to rotate the screen assembly to reduce the jelly scrolling effect in portrait orientation, but whether that will merely move the issue to landscape orientation is unknown.

Internal Upgrades

We are expecting the seventh-generation iPad mini to be updated with a faster chip, likely the A16 Bionic, though the A17 or even an M-series chip is a possibility.

iphone 15 a16 bionic
If Apple goes with the A16 Bionic, it will put the ‌iPad mini‌ on par with the iPhone 14 Pro, ‌iPhone 14‌ Pro Max, iPhone 15, and ‌iPhone 15‌ Plus. The chip would deliver around 10% better performance, 50% more GPU memory bandwidth, and a new image processor (ISP) compared to the current model.

The tablet will also likely get support for Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.3, two of the latest standards that Apple has been adding to other recent product updates. Apple already added Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.3 support to the latest iPad Pro, iPhone 15 Pro models, and most new Macs.

Camera Upgrades

Updated front and rear cameras are expected to be added to the iPad mini this year. The current ‌iPad mini‌ shares the same cameras found across all current iPad models: A 12-megapixel rear camera with an ƒ/1.8 aperture, and a 12-megapixel Ultra Wide front-facing camera with an ƒ/2.4 aperture.

ipad mini rear camera
Given that it has been over 850 days since the current iPad mini was released, upgraded cameras are almost certain to be included in the seventh-generation model.

New Colors

New color options are on the way for the new iPad mini, according to one rumor. The current ‌iPad mini‌ is available in Space Gray, Starlight, Pink, and Purple.

ipad mini 6 lineup
There's no information on what colors Apple could adopt, but it could potentially take inspiration from its ‌standard iPhone 15‌ models, which come in Black, Blue, Green, Yellow, and Pink color options.

What Not to Expect (Yet)

120Hz ProMotion

The new seventh-generation iPad mini will not feature a 120Hz ProMotion display, one leaker with alleged supply chain sources has claimed.

ipad mini display
Suggestions that Apple could conceivably adopt ProMotion for a next-generation ‌iPad mini‌ began to receive attention when the "jelly scrolling" phenomenon was identified shortly after the iPad mini 6 was released in September 2021.

OLED Display

After bringing OLED technology to the iPad Pro this year, Apple is rumored to be planning to expand OLED displays to the iPad mini in the future, but not for a couple of years yet. An iPad mini with an OLED display could be introduced in 2026, according to separate reports.

ipad screen colorful
Apple has apparently not yet fully committed to bringing the more advanced display technology to its mid-range tablets, and may be planning to review how the market responds to the first iPad Pro models that feature OLED displays, which are expected to launch as early as March 2024.

Foldable iPad Mini

Apple is rumored to be working on a foldable device that's around 7 to 8 inches in size and that could ultimately replace Apple's 8.3-inch iPad mini.

FoldPad Redux 24 Magenta and Blue
Samsung Display and LG Display have reportedly already been sending samples of 7-inch and 8-inch foldable panels to Apple since last year, but Apple is said to be reviewing a launch timeframe for the device between 2026 and 2027.

Launch Date

Apple plans to update its entire iPad lineup throughout 2024, according to a November report by Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. However, while iPad Pro and iPad Air models are expected as soon as March, the release of a seventh-generation iPad mini could be a little further away. Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo more recently claimed that the iPad mini 7 is last on Apple's 2024 iPad production roadmap, after its Q1 mass production plans were delayed until the second half of the year.

Related Roundup: iPad mini
Buyer's Guide: iPad Mini (Don't Buy)
Related Forum: iPad

Apple today announced "Apple Sports," a new free app that provides real-time statistics, scores, and more.

Apple Sports App Preview Feature
Apple Sports features a personalized experience with a user's favorite leagues, tournaments, teams shown on an easy-to-read scoreboard. Users can navigate between scores and upcoming games, explore play-by-play information, team statistics, lineup details, and live betting odds, with relevant links to Apple News, the Apple TV app, and connected streaming services. The app is "designed for speed and simplicity," according to Apple. Apple's senior vice president of Services Eddy Cue said:

We created Apple Sports to give sports fans what they want — an app that delivers incredibly fast access to scores and stats. Apple Sports is available for free in the App Store, and makes it easy for users to stay up to date with their favorite teams and leagues.

Apple Sports will keep fans up to date on MLS, NBA, NCAA basketball, NHL, Bundesliga, LaLiga, Liga MX, Ligue 1, Premier League, and Serie A. Additional leagues, including MLB, NFL, NCAAF, NWSL, and WNBA, will become available in the app over time.

Apple Sports is now available for free in the United States, United Kingdom, and Canada.

Apple today announced a new post-quantum cryptographic protocol for iMessage called PQ3. Apple says this "groundbreaking" and "state-of-the-art" protocol provides "extensive defenses against even highly sophisticated quantum attacks."

General Apps Messages
Apple believes the PQ3 protocol's protections "surpass those in all other widely deployed messaging apps," according to its blog post:

Today we are announcing the most significant cryptographic security upgrade in iMessage history with the introduction of PQ3, a groundbreaking post-quantum cryptographic protocol that advances the state of the art of end-to-end secure messaging. With compromise-resilient encryption and extensive defenses against even highly sophisticated quantum attacks, PQ3 is the first messaging protocol to reach what we call Level 3 security — providing protocol protections that surpass those in all other widely deployed messaging apps. To our knowledge, PQ3 has the strongest security properties of any at-scale messaging protocol in the world.

PQ3 will be gradually rolling out for supported iMessage conversations starting with iOS 17.4, iPadOS 17.4, macOS 14.4, and watchOS 10.4 in March, and it is already in the latest beta versions of these updates, according to Apple. visionOS will not support the PQ3 protocol during the initial rollout, the company confirmed.

Apple says PQ3 will fully replace iMessage's existing cryptography protocol within all supported conversations later this year. All devices in an iMessage conversation must be updated to the above software versions or later to be eligible.

Post-Quantum Cryptography

iMessage already supports end-to-end encryption, but existing cryptographic protocols that are commonly used by messaging apps rely on mathematical problems that could potentially be solved by future quantum computers.

PQ3 is designed to protect users against "Harvest Now, Decrypt Later" attacks, in which malicious actors collect large amounts of encrypted data now and store it in hopes they will be able to decrypt it with a quantum computer in the future:

Although such quantum computers don't yet exist, extremely well-resourced attackers can already prepare for their possible arrival by taking advantage of the steep decrease in modern data storage costs. The premise is simple: such attackers can collect large amounts of today's encrypted data and file it all away for future reference. Even though they can't decrypt any of this data today, they can retain it until they acquire a quantum computer that can decrypt it in the future, an attack scenario known as Harvest Now, Decrypt Later.

Apple says PQ3 achieves what it calls "Level 3" security, meaning it secures "both the initial key establishment and the ongoing message exchange."

iMessage PQ3
For deeply technical details about the protocol, read the Apple Security Research blog post.

Apple's iPhone models dominated the top 10 best-selling smartphones in 2023, with only Samsung's mid-range devices making the list, according to Counterpoint Research's Global Monthly Handset Model Sales Tracker.

Share of Global Top 10 Best selling Smartphones 2023
Apple took all top seven positions – a first for the company. iPhone 14 models made up the top three for the series to become the best-selling smartphone of 2023, with the US and China making up half of its sales. The model contributed 19% of the total ‌iPhone‌ sales for 2023.

The iPhone 13 came fourth largely thanks to popularity in Japan and India, while iPhone 15 models took the fifth, sixth, and seventh slots, with the iPhone 15 Pro Max the best-selling model in Apple's newest lineup, despite its relatively late launch in September last year. From the tracker report:

Apple's total sales remained flat in 2023 even as major competitors declined. This stability was partly due to a significant boost from emerging markets like India and the Middle East and Africa (MEA). In 2023, India became the fifth smartphone market to exceed 10 million iPhone unit sales in a single year, highlighting the market's growing importance for Apple. These factors contributed to the iPhone 15 series sales matching the performance of the iPhone 14 series in 2022.

Samsung's budget A series devices filled eighth, ninth, and tenth positions, thanks to their strong value proposition, but none of the Korean company's flagship premium Galaxy phones even made the list.

Counterpoint's research backs up previous data from market research firm IDC, which showed Apple overtook Samsung as the top global smartphone manufacturer in 2023, shipping more phones annually than Samsung for the first time.

Apple is planning to launch at least nine new devices with OLED displays across the iPad and MacBook product lines, according to an updated forecast from research firm Omdia that sets out the company's plans in detail.

Oled iPads and MackBook Pro Notch
As widely rumored, Apple's push to transition to OLED will apparently be jump-started by the release of new 11- and 13-inch iPad Pro models this year. The displays will feature 2,388 by 1,668 and 2,880 by 1,920 resolutions, respectively, Omdia claims. This would be a slight increase in height and a reduction in width for the larger model, while the smaller ‌iPad Pro‌ would retain the same resolution.

apple oled roadmap by omdia estimation

In 2026, Apple will launch 8.3-inch iPad mini and 10.8-inch iPad Air models with OLED displays, as well as 14.2-inch and 16.2-inch OLED MacBook Pro models designed to replace the current mini-LED units. The company is also reportedly working on 13.6-inch and 15.3-inch OLED MacBook Air models for launch no earlier than 2027. These machines will still lack ProMotion technology with a refresh rate of 60Hz like the current models.

In 2027 or later, Apple may introduce a 20.3-inch foldable OLED iPad Pro with ProMotion. This product is still said to be in the conceptual stage, but broadly lines up with other rumors about such a device. Overall, the report largely corroborates existing rumors about Apple's upcoming plans to transition almost all of its portable devices to OLED technology.

Related Forums: iPad, MacBook Air, MacBook Pro

Two Maryland residents that tried to defraud Apple out of 5,000 iPhones worth millions of dollars were today found guilty of mail fraud. Chinese nationals Haotian Sun and Pengfei Xue masterminded a scheme to get Apple to exchange genuine iPhones for counterfeit iPhones sent in for repair.

iPhone 15 General Feature Blue
Between May 2017 and September 2019, Sun and Xue received shipments of inauthentic iPhones from Hong Kong, using spoofed serial numbers and/or IMEI numbers to return them to Apple retail stores and Apple Authorized Service Providers.

More than 5,000 total iPhones were submitted to Apple during that two year period.

The two have been found guilty of mail fraud and conspiracy to commit mail fraud, and are facing a statutory maximum sentence of 20 years in prison. Sentencing will take place on June 21, 2024.

The United States Supreme Court today said that it will not hear the VirnetX vs. Apple patent case, putting an end to a 14-year-long legal battle and ultimately saving Apple $502.8 million.

virnetx apple
As noted by CNBC, with the Supreme Court not weighing in, a March 2023 ruling from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit will stand, so Apple will not have to pay the damages that VirnetX won in 2020.

VirnetX won a successful jury trial against Apple in 2020 and Apple was found to have violated VirnetX patents with its iPhone VPN on demand feature. The two patents cited in the case were later invalidated in a separate ruling from the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

After Apple appealed the initial 2020 ruling, it was able to point to the invalidation of the patents and get the initial award vacated by the federal appeals court. VirnetX attempted to escalate the patent invalidation case to the Supreme Court, but has been denied.

VirnetX is viewed as a patent holding company or "patent troll" that does not offer actual products or services. It generates revenue by suing technology companies that infringe on or license its patents.

While Apple will not have to pay the $503 million from this particular trial, Apple did have to shell out $440 million in 2019 for violating VirnetX's communications security patents with FaceTime and iMessage.

Apple TV+ series Masters of the Air had more viewers in its opening weekend than any other ‌Apple TV‌+ show has had in its first season, Apple told Variety.

masters of the air
Apple did not provide details on the exact number of viewers, but the show beat out popular ‌Apple TV‌+ offerings like The Morning Show and Severance. Masters of the Air features the 100th Bomb Group that performed dangerous aviation raids in Nazi Germany.

After the premiere of Masters of the Air, viewership across ‌Apple TV‌+ grew 65 percent worldwide compared to the prior seven-day period, plus Apple maintained double-digit growth across more than 100 territories.

Masters of the Air was a highly anticipated show that was created as a companion series to Band of Brothers and The Pacific, both of which were popular when they debuted, so it had a built-in audience. The show is executive produced by Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks, who also worked on the prior shows.

Masters of the Air debuted on January 26, and episodes are being released weekly. The finale is set to air on Friday, March 15.

Apple is planning to update the iPad Air and iPad Pro lineups as soon as March, and the new ‌iPad Pro‌ models will be significantly thinner according to dimensions shared by 9to5Mac. Citing sources with knowledge of Apple's plans, the site claims that the larger version will be more than 1mm thinner.

iPad Pro OLED Feature 2
The current 12.9-inch ‌iPad Pro‌ measures in at 6.4mm thick, but the new model is said to be 5mm thick. As for the 11-inch ‌iPad Pro‌, it is currently 5.9mm thick, while the updated version is said to be 5.1mm thick. Both tablets may also be slightly bigger in size.

  • Current 11-inch ‌iPad Pro‌ - 247.6mm x 178.5mm x 5.9 mm
  • Upcoming 11-inch ‌iPad Pro‌ - 249.7mm x 177.5mm x 5.1mm
  • Current 12.9-inch ‌iPad Pro‌ - 280.6mm x 214.9mm x 6.4mm
  • Upcoming 13-inch ‌iPad Pro‌ - 281.5mm x 215.5mm x 5.0mm

Such a slimmed down body suggests a notable design change, which is enabled by an even more significant update -- OLED display technology. OLED display panels are thinner than LCD panels, allowing Apple to cut down on the thickness of its tablets.

Alongside the ‌iPad Pro‌, Apple is expected to introduce two new ‌iPad Air‌ models, including a larger 12.9-inch version for the first time. The larger ‌iPad Air‌ will be almost the same size as the current ‌iPad Pro‌, measuring in at 280.6mm by 214.9mm by 6mm.

Apple is limiting OLED display technology to the Pro lineup, so while the 12.9-inch ‌iPad Air‌ will be similar in length and width to the ‌iPad Pro‌, it will be thicker because it will continue to feature an LCD display.

All of the new iPads are expected to have Apple's M3 chip technology, which was first introduced last year in updated MacBook Pro models. We haven't heard specifics about an event, but we are expecting something in late March to early April.

Related Roundups: iPad Air , iPad Pro
Related Forum: iPad