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Hands-On With 6.1-Inch and 6.5-Inch 2018 iPhone Dummy Models

Before every new iPhone release, we're often inundated with rumors, part leaks, mockups, and dummy models, giving us a clear picture of what to expect when the new devices come out.

This year is no exception, and we've managed to get our hands on dummy models that are said to resemble the rumored 6.1-inch and 6.5-inch iPhones that are coming in 2018, both of which offer up a look at the sizes and designs we can expect from the 2018 iPhone lineup.

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Apple's 2018 iPhone lineup, like the 2017 lineup, will include three phones, but the lineup's composition is unlike anything we've seen before. Apple is planning to introduce a 5.8-inch OLED iPhone that's a follow up to the iPhone X, a 6.5-inch OLED iPhone that can be thought of as an "iPhone X Plus," and a 6.1-inch LCD iPhone that's going to have a much lower price tag than the two OLED iPhones.

We don't have a dummy model of the 5.8-inch OLED iPhone to go along with dummy models of the upcoming 6.1 and 6.5-inch iPhones, because it's going to look identical to the existing iPhone X, so we've used a real iPhone X to compare to the two dummy models.

iPhone X (left), 6.1-inch iPhone dummy (center), 6.5-inch iPhone dummy (right)

All three of the 2018 iPhones feature an edge-to-edge display that adopts Face ID and a TrueDepth camera system, marking the official end of Touch ID for new iPhones. To house the TrueDepth camera, there will be a notch on all three iPhones, just as there was on the iPhone X.

The middle-tier 6.1-inch iPhone uses an LCD display instead of an OLED display to keep costs down, which means that the bezels of that device are slightly thicker than the bezels of the 5.8-inch and 6.5-inch iPhones. The 6.1-inch iPhone dummy also features a single-lens camera, in line with rumors that Apple will stick with a single camera for cost purposes.

6.1-inch iPhone dummy model

A dual-camera setup is expected for both the second-generation 5.8-inch iPhone X model and the 6.5-inch "iPhone X Plus" model, and we can perhaps expect some camera improvements, as Apple typically introduces new camera features with each iPhone upgrade.

Rumors have also suggested the 6.1-inch LCD iPhone will have an aluminum frame rather than the more durable stainless steel frame expected in the two more expensive devices, but other than the frame, the camera, the slightly thicker bezels, and the screen sizes, these devices are expected to be nearly identical.

6.1-inch and 6.5-inch iPhone dummy models

All will include Apple's next-generation A12 processor, according to rumors, along with faster Intel-made LTE chips. RAM could be a differentiating factor, though, with the 6.1-inch LCD iPhone offering 3GB RAM and the OLED iPhones offering 4GB RAM.

We have absolutely no idea what Apple is planning to name its next-generation iPhones given the current iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone X naming scheme. Most of the possibilities sound a little off, such as "iPhone Xs" or "iPhone X Plus" or "iPhone 9" or "iPhone XI." The naming of the 2018 iPhone lineup is perhaps the biggest mystery, given the myriad rumors and part leaks we've seen so far.

iPhone X with 6.5-inch iPhone dummy model

Pricing for the 2018 iPhones could start somewhere right around $600 to $700 for the entry-level 6.1-inch LCD model, based on rumors, while the 5.8-inch OLED iPhone could cost between $800 and $900, and the 6.5-inch OLED iPhone could cost between $1,000 and $1,100.

For a complete rundown on all of the rumors we've heard about the 2018 iPhone lineup, make sure to check out our 2018 iPhone roundup.

What do you think of the iPhones Apple is planning to introduce this year? Which one will you buy? Let us know in the comments.

Related Roundup: 2018 iPhones

Inside the iPhone Repair Ecosystem: Where Do Replacement Parts Come From and Can You Trust Them?

There's a thriving market for unofficial, aftermarket iPhone parts, and in China, there are entire massive factories that are dedicated to producing these components for repair shops unable to get ahold of parts that have been produced by Apple.

The entire Apple device repair ecosystem is fascinating, complex, and oftentimes confusing to consumers given the disconnect between Apple, Apple Authorized Service Providers, third-party factories, and independent repair shops, so we thought we'd delve into the complicated world of Apple repairs.

The Aftermarket Factories


Our exploration of the repair ecosystem was inspired by a video sent to us by a trusted source that MacRumors has worked with in the past, who captured footage inside one of the many facilities in China that are dedicated to creating aftermarket iPhone parts.

This is a small scale operation where workers appear to be creating an aftermarket touch screen digitizer for the iPhone, a thin plastic component that attaches to the LCD through a flex cable and allows physical touch on the screen to be transformed into digital input, allowing the iPhone's processor to translate your touch into system commands.


In addition to producing touch screen digitizers for the iPhone, given the clean room setup, the facility pictured in the video likely also attaches them to LCDs sourced from other factories to produce a full iPhone display assembly that can then be sold to iPhone repair shops around the world.

While this is a small facility, our source tells us that the factory, which employs approximately 10 people, is able to produce up to 10,000 display components per month, with setup and equipment for a factory this size costing approximately $90,000, a minor investment for a major return.

iPhone X display assembly with touch screen digitizer visible, via iFixit

Larger factories, such as those that produce aftermarket LCDs for iPhones and other smartphones, are huge operations that can output millions of components per month. Companies like Tianma, Longteng LCD, Shenchao, and JingDongFang are well-known in the repair world for producing the aftermarket LCDs used by many repair shops. If you search for display components on auction sites like Alibaba, these are the names that pop up over and over again.

These are not small, no name factories producing LCDs - these are major operations creating components by the millions, which should give you an idea of the kind of demand there is for aftermarket components across the globe. It costs hundreds of millions of dollars to purchase the kind of equipment needed to produce aftermarket LCDs.

"It's a crazy industry that involves millions of dollars, probably into billions a year. It's just absolutely nuts," said our source.

The Demand for Aftermarket Parts


Companies that produce aftermarket LCD components are doing so because there's significant demand for these parts in repair shops around the world. Shops that are not Apple Authorized Service Providers are not able to source parts from Apple because Apple limits OEM parts to the repair shops that it partners with.

With no way to purchase components from Apple, sourcing parts from third-party suppliers is the only option for independent repair shops that want to be able to offer iPhone repairs to their customers.

There are more than 15,000 independent repair shops in the United States, all of which are sourcing components from suppliers that receive them mainly from these factories in China. In the South Bay Area alone, where Apple's Cupertino headquarters is located, there are hundreds of non-AASP locations that can fix a broken iPhone. And that's just the United States. There are thousands more independent repair shops around the world.

An independent iPhone repair shop near Cupertino, California

Aftermarket Parts Quality


When thinking of third-party components, you might assume that the parts produced in facilities like the one in the video are far inferior in quality to actual Apple components, which is also the viewpoint of the source that sent us the video.
[The Chinese factories] are basically dishing junk out into the world. Apple's own screen may fail only if you've dropped it. Won't even fail up to 5, 10 years. But the fake screens usually fail between two to three years. Usually.
That's not always entirely true, though, according to many of the repair shops that we spoke with.

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AirPods Wireless Charging Case Said to Work With Any Qi-Certified Charging Mat

At its iPhone X event last September, Apple previewed a new wireless charging case for AirPods, for use with its upcoming AirPower charging mat. The new case looks similar to the current version, which charges via Lightning cable, but it has a built-in induction coil that also enables wireless charging.


Conveniently, it appears that the AirPower won't be the only way to wirelessly charge AirPods placed in the new case.

Chinese publication Chongdiantou, citing unnamed sources within Apple's supply chain, claims that the wireless AirPods case supports the Wireless Power Consortium's universal Qi standard, implying that it will be compatible with any Qi-certified charging mat from companies beyond Apple.

This would differ from the Apple Watch, which uses a modified version of the Qi standard that only works with Apple's official magnetic charging cable and dock, and MFi-certified third-party docks with magnetic chargers. (Apple Watch Series 3 models technically work with select non-MFi chargers too.)

Chongdiantou has made headlines recently after leaking photos of what is claimed to be an engineering prototype of Apple's new 18-watt USB-C power adapter for 2018 iPhones. The website, citing unnamed industry insiders, also claimed that the AirPower should be released this September for around $149 in the United States. Overall, the publication lacks an established track record.

According to Bloomberg, Apple aims to release the AirPower by the end of September, so there's a good chance its pricing and availability will be detailed at Apple's usual iPhone event next month, which hasn't been announced yet. The wireless AirPods charging case should be released simultaneously with the AirPower.

Apple's marketing chief Phil Schiller said the wireless charging case will be optional, so customers with the original AirPods will be able to purchase it separately. Pricing has not been disclosed. Apple is also expected to announce second-generation AirPods with "Hey Siri" support at its September event, but it's unclear if the wireless charging case will be standard, or also be optional for those.

AirPower can charge multiple devices at once, including the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, iPhone X, Apple Watch Series 3 models, and AirPods placed in the new wireless charging case. Apple said it would work to have its proprietary technology become part of the universal Qi standard supported by many companies.

Related Roundup: AirPods
Buyer's Guide: AirPods (Caution)

HomePod Sales May Be Closer to 1-1.5 Million Than 3 Million Since the Speaker Launched

HomePod shipments totaled an estimated 700,000 units in the second quarter of 2018, giving Apple a roughly six percent share of the worldwide smart speaker market, according to research firm Strategy Analytics.


Strategy Analytics previously estimated HomePod shipments totaled 600,000 units in the first quarter of 2018, suggesting that worldwide shipments have reached 1.3 million units since the speaker became available to order in the United States, Australia, and the United Kingdom in late January.

That figure is much lower than one shared by research firm Consumer Intelligence Research Partners, which recently estimated Apple has sold three million HomePods in the United States alone since the speaker launched.

The significant variance in the datasets stems from the fact that Apple doesn't disclose HomePod sales, instead grouping the speaker under its "Other Products" category in its earnings reports, alongside the Apple Watch, Apple TV, AirPods, Beats, iPod touch, and other Apple and third-party accessories.

Apple reported revenue of $3.74 billion from its "Other Products" category last quarter, up 37 percent from $2.73 billion in the year-ago quarter.

Shipments aren't sales, either, so it's impossible to know exactly how many HomePods ended up in the hands of customers.

If we had to guess, we'd say the Strategy Analytics numbers are probably more within the ballpark, as the HomePod is a niche product. The speaker is also available in just six countries, after launching in Canada, France, and Germany in June, with no indication when availability may expand to other regions.

Versus the Competition


HomePod was the world's fourth most popular smart speaker in the second quarter, behind the Amazon Echo, Google Home, and Chinese company Alibaba's Tmall Genie, according to Strategy Analytics.

Amazon remained the leader in the category last quarter, with the Echo commanding an estimated 41 percent market share, while the Google Home finished runner-up with an estimated 27 percent market share, according to Strategy Analytics. Alibaba took third place with an estimated seven percent market share.


While the HomePod has made somewhat of a dent, Apple still has significant ground to make up, which is to be expected given its smart speaker launched around two to three years after its biggest competitors.

It may be tough for Apple to gain further market share unless it releases a more competitively priced model, as the HomePod at $349 is considerably more expensive than the Amazon Echo, priced from $50, and the Google Home, $129.

To that end, rumors suggest Apple may have a lower-priced HomePod or a Siri-enabled Beats speaker in its pipeline.

Related Roundup: HomePod
Buyer's Guide: HomePod (Buy Now)

2018 iPhones Could Start at $699, May Include Apple Pencil Support, 512GB Storage Option for OLED Models

Apple may introduce its upcoming 6.1-inch LCD iPhone with a starting price of around $699 to $749, according to industry analysis by TrendForce. The pricing strategy is said to be partly a response to lower than expected iPhone sales last year, and partly a result of competition from Chinese brands that have expanded their market shares with devices that offer high performance at affordable prices.

Three new iPhone models are expected to form Apple's 2018 lineup: two OLED models measuring in at 5.8 and 6.5 inches, and a 6.1-inch lower-cost LCD model. All three models will feature Face ID in lieu of a Home button, but TrendForce predicts the "budget" LCD device will be Apple's main device in terms of production share.

Image via TrendForce
The specs upgrades would make new iPhones more favorable in the competition with Android phones. On the other hand, the cost of this model has been approaching that of iPhone 8 Plus due to the upgrades. However, the 6.1-inch LCD model would be positioned by Apple's main product this year, with a production share of around 50% in the new iPhone series. Apple is bound to adjust the prices of this model to meet the market expectation and to further expand its market share. Considering the cost reduction of components, TrendForce estimates the starting price of this LCD version at around $699-749.
As for the new OLED models, TrendForce expects the 5.8-inch device will have a lower starting price of $899 to $949, while the current-generation iPhone X, which starts at $999, will enter its "end of life" process due to the similarity in the specs of the two models. Meanwhile, the upcoming 6.5-inch device will target the "premium business segment" with a starting price of $999.

TrendForce believes Apple could introduce a 512GB storage option for the OLED models. In addition, Apple Pencil support may feature with the new iPhones, although it's unclear whether this also relates to just the OLED models. Respected analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has previously suggested that Apple Pencil support for a future iPhone is a possibility, although he doesn't believe iPhones will support Apple Pencil until 2019 at the earliest.

Apple is said to have been bargaining with its supply chain partners to reduce the cost of components, especially those which have been used in earlier generations of iPhone. That view tallies with earlier reports claiming Apple wants Samsung to reduce the price of its OLED display panels so it can cut the cost of current and future iPhone X models.

Price cuts to the display and other components would help Apple lower its bill of materials for the new models, with the savings potentially passed on to customers. For example, in line with TrendForce's prediction, RBC Capital Markets analyst Amit Daryanani believes the second-generation iPhone X will start at $899, down from $999.

TrendForce expects the production volume of the three new iPhones to be around 83-88 million units, potentially taking a larger share of the company's annual sales volume compared with the three models it released last year. Sales volume of iPhones in 2018 meanwhile is expected to remain flat or grow marginally by 2 to 3 percent, owing to the saturated smartphone market and the longer replacement cycle of phones globally.

TrendForce believes the two OLED models have been assembled by manufacturers since late July, while the assembly of the LCD models is scheduled for mid-September. Apple is expected to launch the trio of new iPhones in September.

Related Roundup: 2018 iPhones

Apple Pulls iOS 12 Beta 7 Update Due to Performance Issues

If you haven't updated to the new iOS 12 beta 7 on your iOS device as of yet, you may notice that the over-the-air update option is no longer available, and that's because Apple has pulled the download.

Apple appears to have removed the beta 7 update because of performance issues.


On the MacRumors forums, there are multiple reports of problems when tapping on an icon, which can result in a very noticeable pause before the app launches. As MacRumors reader OldSchoolMacGuy explains:
I'm seeing apps take 10 seconds or more to launch on my X. Restarted and still seeing the same issue.
Some users have said that the pausing issue disappeared for them after five or 10 minutes of using the iPhone, while others appear to be having continual problems.

Prior to when Apple pulled the update, several MacRumors readers had warned other users against installing the update on their iPhones. There have also been reports of other issues, such as apps freezing, Notification Center freezing, Lock screen freezing, and in-app functions refusing to load.

Apple was planning to release a public beta of iOS 12 today, but that may be delayed until these issues have been addressed in an updated release.

iOS 12 beta 7 is a significant update because it removes the Group FaceTime feature that has been present in iOS 12 since launch. Apple now says Group FaceTime will launch in an update coming later this fall.

Update: Apple has also removed the update from the Apple Developer Center.

Related Roundup: iOS 12

Google's iOS and Android Apps Track and Store Location Data With Location History Disabled

Some Google apps on iOS and Android devices continue to store location history even with the setting disabled, according to a new AP report citing data collected by computer science researchers at Princeton.

Location History, a feature available in Google apps like Google Maps, is an option that allows the app to display the locations that you've visited in a timeline. Princeton researcher Gunnar Acar turned off the Location History option in his Google account, but his devices continued to record the locations he had visited.

Data collected from a Princeton researcher on an Android phone with Location History disabled

It appears that even with Location History paused, some Google apps are ignoring the setting and continue to store time-stamped location data, due to confusing data collection policies that allow other app features to also store location information.
For example, Google stores a snapshot of where you are when you merely open its Maps app. Automatic daily weather updates on Android phones pinpoint roughly where you are. And some searches that have nothing to do with location, like "chocolate chip cookies," or "kids science kits," pinpoint your precise latitude and longitude -- accurate to the square foot -- and save it to your Google account.
While Princeton's research focused on Android devices, independent AP testing confirmed that iPhones are exhibiting the same behavior when used with Google apps.

In response to a query about the Location History tracking, Google said that it is clear about its location policies. As it turns out though, the way Google collects location data is confusing and misleading.
"There are a number of different ways that Google may use location to improve people's experience, including: Location History, Web and App Activity, and through device-level Location Services," a Google spokesperson said in a statement to the AP. "We provide clear descriptions of these tools, and robust controls so people can turn them on or off, and delete their histories at any time."
According to Google, users need to turn off "Web and App Activity," a setting enabled by default, to prevent all location data on iOS and Android devices from being saved to a Google account. Leaving "Web and App Activity" enabled while turning off "Location History" prevents Google from adding movements to the built-in timeline, but it does not stop Google from collecting other location information.

This location data collected by Google can be found under myactivity.google.com, but as the AP points out, this information is scattered under different headers often unrelated to location.

To be clear, Google is not illicitly collecting location data, but it is obfuscating its location data policies and collecting data through features that do not mention location information. Many people may not know these Google features are enabled at all, as it's a default setting.

Google's only mention that it may continue storing some location data is in a popup that appears when Location History is disabled through the Google account settings. This popup states that "some location data may be saved as part of your activity on other Google services, like Search and Maps."

On iPhone, when Location History is disabled via settings in Google apps, it says "None of your Google apps will be able to store location data in Location History." As the AP points out, this statement is true but misleading, because while location data isn't stored in Location History, it's still stored under "My Activity."

Location information stored in "My Activity" is used for ad targeting purposes.

Both "Web and App Activity" and "Location History" need to be disabled to prevent Google from collecting any location data, which can be done through the user settings of a Google account. On iOS devices, not using Google apps and disabling location services for Google apps is also an effective method for preventing Google from collecting location data.

Tag: Google

Apple Removes Group FaceTime From iOS 12 and macOS Mojave, Says It'll Launch Later This Year

Apple today removed Group FaceTime from the latest iOS 12 and macOS Mojave betas, which were released this morning, and has instead decided to release the feature at a later date.

One of the key features of iOS 12 and macOS Mojave, Group FaceTime is designed to allow up to 32 people to chat together at one time via FaceTime audio or FaceTime video.


The feature has been available in iOS 12 and macOS Mojave since the first betas became available in June, and it's not clear why Apple has decided to push the feature back to a later date. Group FaceTime worked well in our testing, but we also did not push the limits with a large group of people.

In release notes for both macOS Mojave and iOS 12, Apple says the feature has been removed from the initial releases of macOS Mojave and iOS 12 and "will ship in a future software update later this fall."

With the release of iOS 11, Apple also ended up delaying several features that were initially announced as part of the update until later in the year, including Apple Pay Cash, AirPlay 2, and Messages in iCloud, three significant iOS 11 features that did not come out until months after iOS 11 launched.

Apple Pay Cash later launched in December as part of the iOS 11.2 update, while Messages in iCloud and AirPlay 2 were delayed until the launch of iOS 11.4 in May. Apple has said the Group FaceTime feature will come later in the fall, which means it should come in one of the first or second iOS 12 updates.

Related Roundups: macOS Mojave, iOS 12

Apple Seeds Seventh Beta of iOS 12 to Developers

Apple today seeded the seventh beta of an upcoming iOS 12 update to developers for testing purposes, one week after seeding the sixth beta and more than two months after introducing the new software at the Worldwide Developers Conference.

Registered developers can download the new iOS 12 beta from Apple's Developer Center or over-the-air after installing the proper certificate.

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iOS 12 introduces several major new features, with Apple revamping the operating system from top to bottom to make iPhones and iPads, especially the older models, faster and more responsive.

On the iPhone X, there are new Animoji characters along with "Memoji," which are customizable, personalized, humanoid Animoji that can be used both in Messages and in FaceTime. Messages and FaceTime have also gained fun new camera effects, and Group FaceTime support allows for video chats with up to 32 people.

Siri is smarter in iOS 12 with a new Shortcuts feature that lets you create multi-step customized automations using first and third-party apps that can be activated with Siri voice commands. Shortcuts can be created through the Shortcuts app, available as a beta from Apple's Developer Center.

Apple built comprehensive time management and monitoring tools into iOS 12 with Screen Time, allowing you to keep track of how much time you're spending in apps on your iPhone and iPad. App limits can help you cut back on iOS device usage, and robust parental controls are included for families.


Updated Do Not Disturb options make activating Do Not Disturb more intuitive and simple, and a new Do Not Disturb at Bedtime feature cuts down on nighttime distractions and sleep interruptions.


Grouped Notifications make incoming notifications easier to view and manage, while a new Instant Tuning feature lets you tweak your notification settings right on the Lock screen on a notification-by-notification basis.


Apple News has a new Browse feature, the Stocks app has been redesigned and brought to the iPad, iBooks has been overhauled with a new look and a new name -- Apple Books -- and Voice Memos has been revamped with iCloud support and an iPad app.

ARKit 2.0 introduces new capabilities like shared experiences that let two people see the same AR environment on separate devices, and persistence, which allows AR experiences to be saved across multiple sessions. There's also a new Apple-built Measure app for measuring objects using AR capabilities.

iOS 12 includes a revamped and rebuilt Maps app that uses a new Apple-designed Maps engine that will display foliage, pools, buildings, pedestrian pathways, and other map elements more accurately. The new Maps also includes significant improvements to traffic, real-time road conditions, construction, and more, plus it will enable Apple to push out changes and fixes more quickly.


The updated Maps app is available in the Northern California area during beta testing. After iOS 12 launches, Apple will continue rolling out the new maps to additional U.S. locations across late 2018 and 2019.

Tons of other small tweaks and features have been added to iOS 12, so make sure to check out our dedicated roundup for additional detail on what's new in iOS 12.

Early betas of new operating system updates always introduce tweaked features and new functionality, and we'll be outlining what's new in the seventh beta below. We also rounded up all of the changes that were introduced in the previous betas: beta 2 and beta 3, beta 4, beta 5, and beta 6.

iOS 12 is available for developers and public beta testers, with a public launch planned for September alongside new iPhones.

Update: According to Apple's release notes, today's beta removes the Group FaceTime feature, which is no longer slated for release when iOS 12 launches. Apple says Group FaceTime will be coming in an iOS 12 update "later this fall."

Apple has removed some Screen Time workarounds that children were using to get around app limits, and after updating to the new beta, Apple suggests parents change the Screen Time passcode to prevent children from signing out of iCloud or changing the system time.

There is a bug with Apple Pay in iOS 12 beta 7, which could cause Apple Pay to become unavailable. Apple recommends retrying Apple Pay or restarting the device to fix it.

Related Roundup: iOS 12

Apple Seeds Seventh Beta of macOS Mojave to Developers [Update: Public Beta Available]

Apple today seeded the seventh beta of an upcoming macOS Mojave update to developers for testing purposes, one week after releasing the sixth beta and more than two months after introducing the software at the Worldwide Developers Conference.

macOS Mojave introduces a new method of installing software updates, so after you've installed the initial beta using the appropriate profile from the Developer Center, additional betas can be downloaded through opening up System Preferences and choosing the "Software Update" icon.

Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos.

Apple's macOS Mojave update introduces a systemwide Dark Mode, with Mojave users able to choose between a light theme or the new dark theme, which changes the color of the dock, menu bar, apps, and other elements. Dark Mode is accompanied by Dynamic Desktops, aka wallpapers that subtly change throughout the day. Additional wallpapers were introduced in the fourth and fifth betas.

Stacks, a new desktop organization system, keeps all of your desktop files neat and organized, while Finder has been enhanced with a Gallery View, a Sidebar, a revamped Quick Look option and Quick Actions, so you can do more in the Finder window than ever before.

Screenshots can now be edited using Markup tools and a new management options that also allow for easy screen recording, while Continuity camera, a new feature, allows you to import photos and document scans directly from an iPhone or iPad to the Mac.


The Apple News, Stocks, Home, and Voice Memos apps have been ported from iOS to macOS as part of a multiyear project Apple is working on to make it easier to bring iOS apps to Macs, and Apple has introduced several new privacy protections to keep your data safer than ever.

Apple is also making it harder for websites to track you with a range of new Safari tools, and it's also easier to make and store secure, hard-to-guess passwords for each and every website.

Apple has added an entirely revamped Mac App Store to macOS Mojave that makes it easier to discover apps with a featured section and specific categories for games, creative apps, productivity apps, apps for developers, and more.


macOS Mojave is available to developers and public beta testers to work out bugs and other issues ahead of an upcoming fall public release.

Update: According to Apple's release notes, today's macOS Mojave beta removes the Group FaceTime feature, which is no longer slated for release when macOS Mojave launches. Apple says Group FaceTime will be coming in an update set to be released "later this fall."

Update 2: Apple has also seeded a new beta of macOS Mojave for public beta testers.

Related Roundup: macOS Mojave

'Industry Insiders' Believe AirPower Will Cost Around $149 and Work With All Three 2018 iPhones

Apple previewed its multi-device AirPower charging mat at its iPhone X event last September, and confirmed that it will be released at some point in 2018, but it has yet to reveal how much it will cost.


According to Chinese website Chongdiantou (via LoveiOS), however, so-called "industry insiders" speculate that the AirPower will be priced around 1,000 Chinese yuan, which is roughly $145 based on the current exchange rate. Rounding, this suggests the AirPower could cost around $149 in the United States.

Chongdiantou is the same source that recently leaked photos of what is claimed to be an engineering prototype of Apple's faster 18-watt USB-C power adapter for 2018 iPhones, but overall, the publication lacks an established track record, so this information should be viewed with some skepticism.

According to the oft-reliable Mark Gurman, Apple aims to release the AirPower by the end of September, so there's a good chance its pricing and availability will be confirmed at Apple's usual September event, alongside a trio of new iPhones, Apple Watch Series 4 models, new AirPods with "Hey Siri" support, and more.

$149 would be pricy for a wireless charging mat, but the AirPower can inductively charge multiple Apple devices at the same time, including the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, iPhone X, and Apple Watch Series 3 models. It will also work with AirPods when placed in an optional wireless charging case, likely available next month.

Chongdiantou also recently claimed that all three iPhones expected to be released in 2018 will feature wireless charging, including an all-new 6.1-inch iPhone, making them all compatible with AirPower.

AirPower's ability to charge multiple devices is achieved with a propriety technology developed by Apple. Apple said it will work to have its technology become part of the universal Qi standard supported by many devices, so there's a good chance we'll see true multi-device mats from other companies eventually.

Of note, the AirPower has yet to be authorized by the FCC, a requirement for sale in the United States, according to Apple's website.

Apple Has Certified Key Suppliers of 2018 iPhones as Volume Production Set to Begin

Apple has successfully completed certification of key component suppliers for its widely rumored trio of 2018 iPhones, expected to be announced in September, according to Taiwanese publication Economic Daily News.

2018 iPhone imitation models via Marques Brownlee/MKBHD

The report claims that these suppliers have begun shipping large quantities of camera lenses, metal chassis, and other components to larger manufacturers, including Foxconn, which is expected to assemble the majority of 2018 iPhones, according to Taiwanese research firm Fubon Securities.

In particular, Fubon Securities said Foxconn will assemble every second-generation iPhone X, 90 percent of units for the so-called iPhone X Plus, and 75 percent of units for an all-new, lower-priced 6.1-inch iPhone. Taiwanese manufacturer Pegatron is said to fulfill all of the remaining orders.

While the supply chain is clearly gearing up for 2018 iPhones, it's unclear when volume production of fully-assembled devices will begin. Foxconn recently began its seasonal hiring spree in preparation.

Foxconn typically ramps up manufacturing of new iPhones over the summer, for release in September, but last year was somewhat of an anomaly. While the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus launched in September, the iPhone X was delayed until November 3, reportedly due to TrueDepth sensor-related manufacturing challenges.

Back in June, oft-reliable Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said all three 2018 iPhones will be both announced and available to order this September, but Morgan Stanley analyst Katy Huberty recently cautioned that the 6.1-inch iPhone with an LCD may not launch until October due to possible issues with backlight leakage.

Of course, the 6.1-inch iPhone could end up being available to order in September with a 4-6 week shipping estimate.

As far as pricing is concerned, Kuo expects the second-generation iPhone X to start at $799 to $899, the so-called iPhone X Plus to start at $899 to $999, and the 6.1-inch iPhone with an LCD to start at $599 to $699.

If those price points prove to be accurate, we suspect the second-generation iPhone X would start at $899, with the iPhone X Plus taking over the $999 price point, and the 6.1-inch model serving as somewhat of a budget iPhone X with a $699 price tag — all, of course, based on base storage capacities.

Apple's usual September event will likely take place in almost exactly a month, so there isn't much longer until we know for certain.

Related Roundup: 2018 iPhones
Tag: Foxconn