Top Stories: Magic Keyboard With Touch ID, New MacBook Pro and Apple Watches Incoming, and More
It was another surprise Apple product launch week, with Apple opening up sales of the new Magic Keyboard with built-in Touch ID on a standalone basis after its debut earlier this year as part of the new 24-inch iMac. Now, users of other M1 Macs can get their hands on the accessory for easy fingerprint authentication.
Apple this week also released some new high-end graphics options for the Mac Pro, while the company brought back a dedicated "Store" section on its website. We also saw evidence of upcoming MacBook Pro and Apple Watch updates and got a preview of several upcoming child safety features that will be coming in updates to iOS, iPadOS, and macOS later this year, so check out our video above and read on below for details on these stories and more!
Apple Makes Magic Keyboard With Touch ID Available for Separate Purchase
In late April, Apple introduced a new Magic Keyboard with a built-in Touch ID sensor for unlocking a Mac with a fingerprint. The keyboard was only available with the redesigned 24-inch iMac, but as of this week, the keyboard can be purchased separately for use with any Mac with an M1 chip, including the MacBook Air, 13-inch MacBook Pro, and Mac mini.
Apple has also started shipping the Magic Mouse and Magic Trackpad with braided USB-C to Lightning cables in the box, and the Magic Keyboard with Touch ID is available in an extended Numeric Keypad layout.
Apple Reveals New Child Safety Features, Including Scanning Photos for Known Sexual Abuse Material
Apple this week previewed new child safety features that will be coming to the iPhone, iPad, and Mac with software updates later this year.
The upcoming features include a Communication Safety tool in the Messages app that warns children and their parents when receiving or sending sexually explicit photos, the ability for Apple to detect known Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM) images stored in iCloud Photos, and improved CSAM guidance from Siri/Spotlight Search.
Apple Adds New High-End Graphics Options for Mac Pro
This week saw Apple release new high-end AMD Radeon Pro W6000 series graphics modules for the 2019 Mac Pro. The new graphics options are available when configuring a new Mac Pro on Apple's online store, and the modules are also being sold on a standalone basis for installation in an existing Mac Pro.
Apple has shared support documents walking through the many different display setups that can be used with the GPUs and how to use AMD's Infinity Fabric Link technology for increased performance and faster data transfer between the modules.
Unreleased Apple Watches and Macs Listed in Regulatory Database
The fall season is just around the corner and, as usual, that means we can expect several new Apple products to launch in the coming months.
In advance, Apple has filed a lengthy list of unreleased Mac and Apple Watch models in the Eurasian Economic Commission's regulatory database. These listings will likely end up being the Apple Watch Series 7 models and new Apple silicon 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models.
Wi-Fi 6E Explained: What It Could Mean for iPhone 13 and Beyond
iPhone 13 models are widely rumored to feature Wi-Fi 6E, and to better understand what this means, MacRumors sat down for an exclusive interview with Kevin Robinson, senior vice president of marketing for the Wi-Fi Alliance.
At a surface level, Wi-Fi 6E offers the features and capabilities of Wi-Fi 6, including higher performance, lower latency, and faster data rates, extended into the 6 GHz band. However, there are a lot more nuances, so the interview is a worthwhile read ahead of the release of iPhone 13 models.
Working AirPower Prototype Shown in Video Clip
A video of a seemingly functional AirPower prototype has been shared on Twitter by Apple device collector Giulio Zompetti, in what appears to be a first-of-its-kind look at the elusive charger in action.
The video shows a unique on-screen iOS animation when the iPhone is placed on the AirPower charging mat, which has only previously been seen in Apple's early marketing materials, making it the first time this animation has been seen in the wild. An iPhone on the AirPower charger would have shown the charge of all of the devices that were placed on the pad.
Apple's Website Reintroduces Dedicated 'Store' Tab
What's old is new again! Apple this week reintroduced a dedicated online "Store" section on its website, allowing customers to browse products in a centralized place. Apple had removed the section in 2015, but a pandemic-driven surge in online shopping likely prompted the company to reverse its decision.
The page looks very similar to the Apple Store app on mobile devices and also contains information about refurbished products, trade-ins, and other helpful shopping resources.
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.