Apple has agreed to provide its chief compliance officer, Kyle Andeer, to the Senate Judiciary Committee's antitrust panel for a hearing on anti-competitive practices for mobile app stores on April 21, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman.
Earlier this week, Apple refused to provide an executive for the hearing around anti-competitive practices on online stores. In a letter obtained by Bloomberg News, Apple says that it has deep respect for the role and job of the subcommittee and that it was simply seeking alternative dates for the hearing due to its coming trial with Epic Games, also about the App Store.
“We have deep respect for your role and process on these matters and, as we told your staff, we are willing to participate in a hearing in the subcommittee,” Apple said. “We simply sought alternative dates in light of upcoming matters that have been scheduled for some time and that touch on similar issues.”
The U.S Senate subcommittee is focused on investigating claims that Apple and Google participate in anti-competitive practices for their respective online app marketplaces and distribution platforms. In a letter addressed to Apple CEO Tim Cook, Senator Amy Klobuchar and Senator Mike Lee say that Apple's control and power over apps on its device warrant a "full and fair examination."
More than half of internet traffic comes through mobile phones, whose users rely on mobile applications to access online content and services—and the vast majority of mobile apps are downloaded from either Apple’s App Store or Google’s Play Store. Apple’s power over the cost, distribution, and availability of mobile applications on the Apple devices used by millions of consumers raises serious competition issues that are of interest to the Subcommittee, consumers, and app developers. A full and fair examination of these issues before the Subcommittee requires Apple’s participation.
Google had previously already agreed to provide a witness but declined to specify who would represent the company at the hearing.
Note: Due to the political or social nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Political News forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.
For those unfamiliar with Flappy Bird, the game consists of guiding a bird through as many pipes as possible without hitting them. The bird, named Farby, moves up with every tap, and users must ensure that Farby doesn't hit any obstacles along the way, or else the game ends.
The app grew immensely popular in 2014, even at one point generating $50,000/day thanks to in-app ads. Despite its removal from the App Store, a number of games to this day continue to be made and played with inspiration from Flappy Bird. You can learn more about Sardesai's interactive notification version of Flappy Bird on Twitter.
Apple's AirTags may still be nowhere to be seen nearly two years after signs of them were first discovered, but Apple this week launched its Find My network accessory program that will let third-party devices integrate with the Find My app on Apple's platforms to make it easy to keep track of your items.
This week also saw fresh rumors about the upcoming "iPhone 13" and new iMacs, while Microsoft and Samsung continue to take aim at Apple with their marketing. Read on for details on these stories and more!
Apple Announces Find My Network With Support for Third-Party Devices
The updated Find My app with a new Items tab is available now on devices running iOS 14.3 and later, iPadOS 14.3 and later, and macOS Big Sur 11.1 or later, following a server-side change.
Apple also announced that third-party device makers will be able to take advantage of Ultra Wideband technology in U1-equipped Apple devices, like iPhone 11 and iPhone 12 models. According to Apple, third-party accessories that offer Ultra Wideband support will be able to offer a "more precise, directionally aware experience when nearby," which should make it easier to pinpoint the specific location of these items when lost.
It has long been rumored that Apple is planning its own item trackers called AirTags, but at this point, it's unclear if and when they will be released. It is possible that Apple is giving competitors like Chipolo a head start over AirTags to avoid potential antitrust complaints.
iPhone 13 Pro Mockup Shows Smaller Notch, Repositioned Earpiece and Front Camera
While we are still several months away from the launch of iPhone 13 models, accessory makers are already preparing for the upcoming devices by creating dummy versions based on rumors and leaked specifications from Apple's supply chain.
This week saw Japanese blog Mac Otakara share an alleged dummy model of the 6.1-inch iPhone 13 Pro, providing a closer look at the device's rumored smaller notch with a relocated earpiece and front camera. While the dummy model is quite rudimentary, it supposedly has accurate dimensions, allowing accessory makers to get a head start on iPhone 13 cases and accessories.
iPhone 13 models are expected to be announced in September, with mass production of A15 chips for the devices reportedly set to begin in late May, which is apparently slightly ahead of schedule.
New iMac Expected to Feature 'Really Big' Display Larger Than Current 27-inch Model
In June 2020, Apple said that its transition away from Intel processors in Macs would take around two years to be completed. In addition to the iMac, Apple is rumored to be working on redesigned 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models with Apple silicon for release in the second half of this year.
Microsoft Says Surface Pro 7 is 'Better Choice' Than iPad Pro
The ad highlights how the Surface Pro 7 has a kickstand, unlike the iPad Pro, and it calls the iPad Pro's keyboard folio "a lot heavier" than the Surface option.
Microsoft also points out that the iPad Pro only has a single USB-C port while the Surface Pro 7 has several available ports. "You wanna be this guy?" says the actor in the ad, while holding up an iPad with a dongle attached.
"iPad Pro's just a tablet," adds the actor. "Surface is a whole computer and a tablet."
Samsung's 'iTest' Lets You Try a Galaxy Device on Your iPhone
Visiting the iTest website on an iPhone prompts users to install a web app to the Home screen. From there, tapping the app launches into a simulated Galaxy smartphone home screen complete with a range of apps and settings options. You can open the Galaxy Store, apply themes, and even access the messages and phone apps, complete with a simulated phone call and messages.
Samsung's interactive experience is neat, and if you are looking to kill some time, it is worth playing around with it for a few minutes.
Hands-On With the New Sonos Roam Speaker
Sonos in March introduced a new portable smart speaker called the Sonos Roam, which is priced at $169, making it the most affordable Sonos speaker to date. We were able to check out the Sonos Roam to see if it's worth the asking price and how it compares to other portable speakers on the market.
We were impressed with the sound quality that the Sonos Roam delivers relative to its size, and with AirPlay 2 support, it is an ideal choice for wirelessly streaming audio from an iPhone, iPad, or Mac.
Sonos said the Roam will be released on April 20, and it is available for pre-order for $169 ahead of that date.
Each week, we publish an email newsletter like this highlighting the top Apple stories, making it a great way to get a bite-sized recap of the week hitting all of the major topics we've covered and tying together related stories for a big-picture view.
Apple has decided not to testify in a U.S. Senate subcommittee hearing on antitrust issues related to mobile App Stores, and U.S. senators have called Apple's refusal "unacceptable," reports Reuters.
In a letter addressed to Apple CEO Tim Cook, senators Amy Klobuchar and Mike Lee urged Apple to reconsider the decision because a "full and fair examination" of competition issues requires Apple's participation.
The senators say that Apple has been aware of the upcoming April hearing for weeks and even held discussions with Senate staff members on who would testify on Apple's behalf, but then Apple "abruptly declared" that it would provide no witness to testify at all.
Apple is citing its upcoming trial against Epic Games as the reason for not providing a witness for the App Store hearing, but the Senate Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on Competition Policy, Antitrust, and Consumer Rights is not happy with that excuse.
There is no specific date set for the hearing as of yet, but Google plans to participate. It will look at the power that Apple and Google have over the cost, distribution, and availability of mobile apps on iPhone and Android devices.
Note: Due to the political or social nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Political News forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.
Epic Games and Apple are involved in a highly public lawsuit in the United States, but Epic has also sued Apple in other countries, including Australia, in an attempt to boost its chances of getting a favorable ruling.
Things aren't quite going Epic's way, however, as the justice overseeing the case today decided that he's going to let the two companies battle it out in the United States.
According to Gizmodo Australia, the Australian case has been stayed for three months, and for anything to move forward, Epic Games has to file a lawsuit in California alleging violations of Australian Consumer Law.
Basically, the Australian judge wants Epic to file its Australian case in the United States, which would see Judge Gonzalez Rogers, who is overseeing the U.S. dispute, managing both cases. In this situation, Gonzalez Rogers would need to try the case under U.S. law, and then Australian law.
Epic Games has three months to file the Australian lawsuit in California, and if that doesn't happen, the Australian case will be permanently stayed.
The only way that the proceedings can be brought back to the Australian court is if Judge Gonzalez Rogers declines to determine whether Apple has violated Australian law. Epic can also appeal, but an appeal won't be heard until November at the earliest.
In a statement, Epic Games said that it "remains committed" to its fight in Australia and around the world.
We remain committed to our fight for increased competition on digital platforms in Australia and around the world. Australian consumers have the right to install apps from the sources they choose and avoid paying excessive prices for apps. We will continue supporting the Australian government and regulators in their pursuit of fair competition in mobile app marketplaces.
Regardless of Epic's decision on the Australia case, it is currently on hold while the legal battle plays out in the United States. Epic Games and Apple will meet in court on May 3.
Epic's attempt to expand its fight with Apple to the UK also fizzled out after the country's Competition Appeal Tribunal rejected the lawsuit and pushed it back to the United States. As in Australia, if the U.S. courts decline to rule on relief in the United States, the case can later resume in the UK. Epic has also appealed to the European Commission, but there is no ruling from the EU as of yet.
Fuse has a whole line of cord management options for the iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, and Mac that are well-designed and affordably priced. With so many people still working from home, Fuse accessory options are excellent for keeping home offices organized and tidy.
From the Side Winder that keeps the MacBook Pro's USB-C cable neatly wound to the Watch Side Winder for rolling up the Apple Watch cord and charging, Fuse has something for everyone, and we've outlined the options below.
Snap Backs for iPhone, iPad, and MacBook
Available for $8.99 to $9.99, the Snap Backs can be purchased for the 12W iPhone and iPad charger, the 18W iPad Pro/iPhone charger, the 5W iPhone charger, and the 29/30W MacBook charger.
Each Snap Back fits over one of Apple's chargers, and the reel at the bottom is used to wind up the cord, so you can pull out as much cord as you need with no excess. It's ideal for travel because you can roll up the entire cord to keep it organized when its tucked in a backpack or bag, and there's no extra cord to deal with when you need to pull it out to use it.
Side Winders for Cables of All Sizes
Priced starting at $4.99, Fuse makes small Side Winders for iPhone cables, headphone cables, iPad cables, and more. The Side Winder is donut shaped and lets you roll the cord around the middle portion before securing the end of the cable using the included groove.
The Side Winder Mini ($4.99) is perfect for iPhone cables, micro-USB cables, corded headphones, and more. It can be used with cables one foot to five feet in length.
The Side Winder Mini and Max ($7.99) are designed to work with all kinds of cables. The mini version is ideal for iPhone cables, micro-USB cables, and corded headphones, while the Max cable is useful for USB-C cables.
The Side Winder Watch ($4.99) is designed specifically for the Apple Watch. It wraps up the Apple Watch cable and has a cutout in the center for the watch so it can be used as a charging base in addition to a cable management option.
The Side Kick
The Side Kick, priced at $13.99, is designed to work with Apple's MacBook, MacBook Air, and MacBook Pro chargers. It's a little pop out socket that attaches to the side of a MacBook power adapter using adhesive.
When popped out, it can be used to wrap up a MacBook's cord neatly, allowing the power adapter and the cord to be transported with no cable mess. When you're using the cable, the Side Kick pops back in so it adds little bulk to an Apple power adapter.
The Side Winder
Priced at $19.99, the Side Winder is designed for the MacBook Air and MacBook Pro models, and it's meant to wind up both the USB-C (or MagSafe) cable of a MacBook along with the extension cable.
The MacBook's power adapter goes in the center and the two cables wrap up in the reel around it. You can pull out just the right amount of cable so you never have excess cable to deal with. This model is designed specifically for the power adapter with extension, and if you just have a standard USB-C cable for charging and no extension cable (USB-C Macs don't come with them by default) the Side Kick is the better option.
Enter the Giveaway
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The contest will run from today (April 9) at 11:00 a.m. Pacific Time through 11:00 a.m. Pacific Time on April 16. The winners will be chosen randomly on April 16 and will be contacted by email. The winners will have 48 hours to respond and provide a shipping address before new winners are chosen.
Apple is ramping up its efforts to produce feature films, according to a new report from The Information. Apple has a limited number of high profile films already, including "Palmer," "Cherry," and "Greyhound," and sees it as a way to draw more people into Apple TV+.
Apple has been telling studio executives that it is aiming to do more than 10 to 12 original movies per year for Apple TV+, which would let it better compete with other streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, and HBO Max.
To facilitate its push into feature films, Apple has hired Jessie Henderson, who was previously the executive vice president of feature films for the HBO Max streaming service. She will join the Apple TV+ team run by Jamie Erlicht and Zack Van Amburg, reporting to Matt Dentler, an Apple TV+ executive who handles original films.
Compared to other streaming services, Apple TV+ is still in its infancy and Apple is working hard on content to bolster the service and make it more attractive to subscribers. Apple is still giving people who buy a new device a free year of service, and those who originally redeemed that free year when Apple TV+ launched in November 19 continue to have access at no cost as Apple continues to extend the trial period.
Apple has continued its free trial periods to give people more time to get hooked on the original content available on Apple TV+ before having to pay for a subscription. At this time, Apple is also reimbursing those who pay for Apple TV+, so the service is making little to no money at this time.
Apple has won the rights to a script for an hour-long drama series that will see Justin Timberlake star as former "The Gong Show" host Chuck Barris, according to Deadline. The untitled series will be based on "Confessions of a Dangerous Mind," a 1984 memoir in which Barris claimed that hosting "The Gong Show" was a cover for his real job as a CIA assassin. Barris later admitted that he made up the story.
"Confessions of a Dangerous Mind" was already adapted into a film directed by George Clooney in 2002. The new Apple TV+ series will be co-produced by Paramount Television and Miramax, the latter of which released the 2002 film.
Timberlake recently starred in the Apple TV+ film "Palmer" alongside child actor Ryder Allen, who was nominated for a Critics Choice Award for Best Young Performer. Following the release of "Palmer" in late January, Apple TV+ reportedly set a new weekend viewership record, with a 33% increase over average viewer numbers at the time.
Today we're tracking a few discounts across various Apple-related accessories, starting with savings on Anker accessories like wireless chargers and other various charging devices. You'll also find ongoing deals on Apple's Magic Keyboard accessories, and a new Woot sale on Netgear's Orbi Whole Home Mesh Wi-Fi System.
Note: 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.
Anker's newest batch of discounts include savings on wireless chargers, USB-C chargers, Bluetooth speakers, and more. These are a mix of discounts that have been automatically applied and some that need coupon codes, all of which you'll find in the list below.
Today at Woot you can save on the Netgear Orbi Whole Home Tri-band Wi-Fi System, priced at $309.99, down from $599.00. This device is brand new and comes with a one year Netgear warranty when purchased through Woot's website.
Compared to other retailers, Woot's sale is one of the best online this week. Amazon has the same Orbi system priced at $399.99 and Walmart is selling the accessory for around $415. This version of Orbi comes with one router and two satellites that are able to cover up to 7,500 square feet.
Solid deals also remain on Apple's Magic Keyboard for the 12.9-inch iPad Pro, which is priced at $249.00, down from $349.00. This discount has been applied automatically and doesn't require a coupon code.
This deal is a match of the best price ever seen on this accessory. The Magic Keyboard provides a full keyboard with a trackpad, backlit keys, and a floating cantilever design that lets you adjust the iPad Pro to find the best viewing angle.
Be sure to visit our full Deals Roundup to shop for even more Apple-related products and accessories.
Apple Music TV offers a constant live stream of currently popular music videos, live shows, and events that run for 24 hours every day. Every Friday, Apple Music TV debuts new videos and there are appearances from Apple Music 1 radio hosts with interviews and more.
The feature was initially only available in the United States, but Apple is now beginning to roll the service out internationally, starting with the UK and Canada.
Apple appears to be celebrating the launch of Apple Music TV in the UK by featuring songs from British artists such as Dua Lipa, Stormzy, Ed Sheeran, Sam Smith, and Little Mix.
Users can watch Apple Music TV in the Apple Music app as well as in the Apple TV app. In the TV app, users scroll down to find Apple Music TV highlighted on its own dedicated row, and it is also at the top of the Browse tab in Apple Music. There is as yet no other way to bookmark or access the channel.
As many as 68 percent of iPhone users are expected to deny advertisers permission to track them thanks to Apple's App Tracking Transparency feature, in what is beginning to look like a significant blow to the advertising industry (via AdWeek).
With the launch of iOS 14.5, apps will have to receive explicit user permission before accessing an iPhone's advertising identifier or IDFA, which is used to track usage across apps and websites for ad targeting purposes.
Chief analytics officer at marketing company Epsilon, Loch Rose, said "nobody really knows for sure" what will happen once Apple's tracking prompts become widespread, but the cost per mille of in-app ads, which is the cost an advertiser pays for one thousand views or impressions, is expected to drop by as much as 50 percent.
The initial outlook for the number of users giving consent to track looks bleak, with a median opt-in rate of just 32 percent, according to an analysis of 300 apps across 2,000 devices from AppsFlyer, a mobile marketing and attribution company.
The analysis found that apps with higher consumer affinity saw higher opt-in rates, hovering around 40 percent, but some companies such as dating app Bumble are expecting as few as 20 percent of users to opt-in at most, with its lowest opt-in forecast being for less than one percent of users.
Major digital ad company Trade Desk said that 10 percent of the 12 million ad opportunities per second on its platform are tied directly to IDFA metrics.
There is concern in the advertising industry that widespread opt-outs would lead to the complete deprecation of IDFAs, making ad targeting and performance information almost impossible on Apple platforms, since a key piece of data for advertising would essentially be removed and a certain number of users will no longer be targetable at all.
If opt-out rates are high and IDFAs become scarce, app developers and publishers are expecting revenues to be hit in the short term. Advertisers are also aware that opt-in rates may not be consistent when the feature is widely adopted, which may exacerbate the level of uncertainty and lead to inconsistent data.
Approximately 58 percent of advertisers are reportedly planning to move their businesses out of Apple's ecosystem and invest in other areas like Android devices or connected TV as a result of the change.
According to the market data, the iPhone 12 mini came in eighth place for the best-selling smartphone worldwide in the first month of the year. However, the iPhone 12, iPhone 12 Pro Max, iPhone 12 Pro, and last year’s iPhone 11 enjoyed dominance at the top of the list.
The 5.4-inch iPhone has widely been reported to to have suffered from disappointing sales, with Apple even reportedly cutting production due to "far lower" than expected demand. The smaller handset includes the same features as the larger 6.1-inch iPhone 12, including the same camera system, chip, and overall design. The mini, however, includes a significantly smaller battery, and obviously, a less immersive display.
Despite its struggles, Apple is still reportedly planning to keep the 5.4-inch form factor alive in the 2021 iPhone 13 lineup. The newer handset, alongside the rest of the lineup, will likely benefit from improved battery life thanks to the power efficiency of the A15, which should address concerns from iPhone 12 mini customers about short battery life.
Apple is expected to launch the third iteration of AirPods in the third quarter of this year. Rumors and reports suggest the new AirPods will feature an updated design more in line with the AirPods Pro, but lacking in "Pro" features such as active noise cancellation.
Apple products are very often faked and sold online on unauthorized Apple marketplaces, so much so that Apple has a team whose sole focus is to crackdown on counterfeit products and prevent them from being sold. Fake Apple products not only present a challenge to the tech giant, but also pose a danger to customers. Buying fake products not only means you're missing out on the latest technology, but they could also present safety hazards and can even be illegal in some countries.
It's no secret that Apple sees iMessage as a big enough selling point to keep the service exclusive to Apple devices, however new court filings submitted by Epic Games in its ongoing lawsuit with the company reveal just how Apple executives have rationalized their decision not to develop a version of iMessage for Android.
Apple clearly recognizes the power that iMessage has to keep users loyal to its platforms, particularly in the U.S., and Epic is using emails as well as extracts from depositions with Apple executives Eddie Cue, Craig Federighi, and Phil Schiller to bolster its narrative that Apple seeks to lock customers into its ecosystem.
For example, the document cites an 2016 email in which an unnamed former Apple employee complained that iMessage "amounts to serious lock-in," which prompted Schiller to respond: "Moving iMessage to Android will hurt us more than help us, this email illustrates why."
a. As early as 2013, Apple decided not to develop a version of iMessage for the Android OS. (Cue Dep. 92:22-93:1.)
b. Mr. Cue testified that Apple "could have made a version on Android that worked with iOS" such that there would "have been cross-compatibility with the iOS platform so that users of both platforms would have been able to exchange messages with one another seamlessly". (Cue Dep. 92:5-9; 92:11-16.)
c. However, Craig Federighi, Apple's Senior Vice President of Software Engineering and the executive in charge of iOS, feared that "iMessage on Android would simply serve to remove [an] obstacle to iPhone families giving their kids Android phones". (PX407, at '122.)
d. Phil Schiller, an Apple executive in charge of the App Store, agreed that Apple should not offer iMessage on Android devices. (Cue Dep. 92:18-93:1.)
e. In 2016, when a former Apple employee commented that "the #1 most difficult [reason] to leave the Apple universe app is iMessage . . . iMessage amounts to serious lock-in" to the Apple ecosystem, Mr. Schiller commented that "moving iMessage to Android will hurt us more than help us, this email illustrates why". (PX416, at '610; Cue Dep. 114:14-115:2.)
As Cue's comments show, Apple was capable of developing an Android version of iMessage as early as 2013, but chose not to, since it would remove one obstacle that prevents families from giving their children Android phones.
In 2016, rumors began swirling around the possibility Apple might launch a version of iMessage for Android smartphones due to the company's increased focus on services, however senior Apple executives shot down those rumors by admitting that having a superior messaging platform that only worked on Apple devices would help sales of those devices, which has been the company's classic (and successful) rationale for years.
Apple does distribute some apps on the Google Play store for Android, such as Apple Music, Move to iOS (for users who are transitioning from an Android smartphone to an iPhone), and Beats, an app used to pair with Beats products with Android devices.
Apple is expected to substantially increase shipments of mmWave enabled iPhone models in 2021 thanks to the increased demand and improved global support for the newer technology, according to DigiTimes.
Apple currently only offers mmWave-enabled iPhone 12 models in the United States and is likely to hold off on offering the option to more countries until the technology is more widely available. According to DigiTimes, that wider availability will take place this year, and as a result, Apple is set to increase shipments of mmWave iPhones.
Apple is expected to boost its 5G mmWave smartphone shipment goal for 2021 as the global economy is on track for stable recovery, and its demand for AiP modules supporting mmWave iPhones will grow remarkably this year, the sources said.
In 2020, Apple lowered its 5G mmWave iPhone shipment projections as construction of the corresponding infrastructure in the US and Europe was severely dragged down by the pandemic.
The iPhone 12 was the first iPhone to feature 5G connectivity. 5G connection includes two types of networks, mmWave, which is considered to be the next widely adopted standard that offers super-fast speeds, and a 6GHz connection that is currently the conventional option worldwide. mmWave networks work through higher frequency radio bands that can range from 24Ghz to as high as 40Ghz.
Due to their increased frequency, mmWave is extremely limited in range and requires more advanced and expensive infrastructure compared to 6GHz. Cities and countries around the world are still very much in the early stages of adopting mmWave technology. Even in cities where mmWave technology is present, real-world 5G speeds can differ greatly depending on your proximity to the mmWave tower and the device you're using.
When we tested Verizon's mmWave network with a Samsung Galaxy S10 5G smartphone in Chicago in mid-2019, we reached speeds as high as almost 2GBs. Still, we found that speeds vary drastically depending on your location and other factors. You can checkout our full mmWave vs. sub-6GHz guide for more information and insight.
The two premium "Pro" models of the upcoming iPhone 13 lineup will be equipped with a low-power LTPO display, enabling the iPhones to have a 120Hz refresh rate, according to industry sources cited by Taiwanese publication DigiTimes.
According to today's paywalled report, Apple suppliers Samsung and LG Display are in the process of converting parts of their production capacity to produce LTPO OLED panels for Apple's upcoming iPhone. The complete conversion of production from LTPS displays to LTPO will likely be completed in the first half of 2021.
Even with the handover to LTPO production completed in the first half of the year, capacity will be lower than previously due to added steps in the development process.
Samsung Display and LG Display, now offering LTPS OLED displays for iPhones, are proceeding with capacity conversion to LTPO ones at their Apple-dedicated 6G OLED lines, with the conversion likely to be completed in the first half of 2021, the sources said, adding that production capacity will drop due to the added oxide step when LTPS is converted to LTPO.
Alongside Samsung and LG Displays, Apple is looking to add Chinese display maker BOE to its list of suppliers for LTPO displays for the iPhone 13, despite having repeatedly failed quality control tests. BOE is reportedly testing LTPO panels at a new "Apple-dedicated" section at one of its plants in China. The report notes that BOE "got the go-ahead from Apple to supply OLED panels in December 2020."
Last year, Apple was widely expected to adopt LTPO displays in its 2020 iPhones, giving them the 120Hz ProMotion refresh rate. Despite an avalanche of reports, display analyst Ross Young accurately predicted in July of last year that it would not debut in the iPhone 12 lineup, but instead predicts 120Hz on the 2021 iPhones.
A plausible hurdle Apple may be facing is the increased power consumption that a higher refresh rate presents. On that front, DigiTimes reports that the iPhone 13 Pro models will feature 15-20% reduced power consumption even with the newer displays. While not mentioned in the report, the improved power efficiency is likely thanks to the upcoming A15 chip that will power the new handsets.
Apple first debuted ProMotion in its 2017 iPad Pro, but it has not yet come to the iPhone. The higher 120Hz refresh rate compared to the current 60Hz offers a smoother experience when scrolling and gaming.
Verizon is recalling 2.5 million hotspot devices that it sold because of a faulty lithium ion battery that can overheat, resulting in a fire and burn hazard.
Affected devices include Ellipsis Jetpack Mobile Hotspots with model numbers MHS900L, MHS900LS, and MHS900LPP.
Verizon said on Thursday that it is working with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) on the recall. Verizon also said that it is working to find the cause of the issues and will provide replacement Orbic Speed devices to customers free of charge.
All Ellipsis Jetpacks have received two over-the-air software updates related to the issue. The first displays the device's identifying number on the scrolling screen to make an exchange easier, and the second prevents the device from charging when it is plugged in and powered on to cut down on the risk of overheating.
According to the CPSC, Verizon has received 15 reports of devices overheating, including six cases that led to fire damage to bedding or flooring. There were two reports of minor burn injuries.
Customers who have an affected Ellipsis Jetpack should get in touch with Verizon through the recall website to arrange a replacement.
Each year, the Zero Day Initiative hosts a "Pwn2Own" hacking contest where security researchers can earn money for finding serious vulnerabilities in major platforms like Windows and macOS.
This 2021 Pwn2Own virtual event kicked off earlier this week and featured 23 separate hacking attempts across 10 different products including web browsers, virtualization, servers, and more. A three-day affair that spans multiple hours a day, this year's Pwn2Own event was livestreamed on YouTube.
Apple products were not heavily targeted in Pwn2Own 2021, but on day one, Jack Dates from RET2 Systems executed a Safari to kernel zero-day exploit and earned himself $100,000. He used an integer overflow in Safari and an OOB write to get kernel-level code execution, as demoed in the tweet below.
Other hacking attempts during the Pwn2Own event targeted Microsoft Exchange, Parallels, Windows 10, Microsoft Teams, Ubuntu, Oracle VirtualBox, Zoom, Google Chrome, and Microsoft Edge.
A serious Zoom flaw was demonstrated by Dutch researchers Daan Keuper and Thijs Alkemade, for example. The duo exploited a trio of flaws to get total control of a target PC using the Zoom app with no user interaction.
Pwn2Own participants received more than $1.2 million in rewards for the bugs they discovered. Pwn2Own gives vendors like Apple 90 days to produce a fix for the vulnerabilities that are uncovered, so we can expect the bug to be addressed in an update in the not too distant future.