Top Stories: Tap to Pay on iPhone, AirTag Privacy Updates, and More
As we continue to roll toward a rumored Apple event in early March, we're starting to hear more about what we might see on the software side, with the iOS 15.4 betas revealing some new features and changes and Apple announcing a new "Tap to Pay on iPhone" feature that could come as part of the update.
Apple has also announced some upcoming changes to the way AirTags work in order to address privacy concerns, while it looks like Apple's long-rumored AR/VR headset is coming closer to fruition, so read on for details on these stories and more!
Apple Announces 'Tap to Pay' Feature Allowing iPhones to Easily Accept Contactless Payments
Apple this week announced a new "Tap to Pay on iPhone" feature that will allow the iPhone XS and newer to accept contactless payments from other iPhones or credit cards without any additional hardware required.
Apple said the feature will launch in the U.S. later this year within supported iOS apps. Tap to Pay on iPhone will likely roll out with iOS 15.4 based on code-level references to the feature uncovered by MacRumors in the latest beta release.
Everything New in iOS 15.4 Beta 2: Face ID Updates, Tap to Pay Code and More
Apple this week seeded the second betas of iOS 15.4, iPadOS 15.4, macOS 12.3, watchOS 8.5, and tvOS 15.4 to developers and public beta testers.
The second beta of iOS 15.4 includes some new features and changes, including references to Apple's upcoming Tap to Pay on iPhone feature, preparations for state IDs and driver's licenses in the Wallet app, tweaked wording for the Face ID With a Mask feature, and more.
Apple also released iOS 15.3.1, macOS 12.2.1, and watchOS 8.4.2 with bug fixes.
Apple Announces AirTag Updates to Address Unwanted Tracking
Apple this week announced that it is making some updates to AirTags with the aim of cutting down on unwanted tracking. There are several changes that will be implemented in a multi-phase rollout.
For instance, in an upcoming iOS software update, Apple plans to implement new privacy warnings that will show up during AirTag setup in an attempt to thwart malicious use of the item tracking accessory.
Apple's 'realityOS' for Rumored AR/VR Headset Referenced in Source Code
New references to "realityOS," the AR/VR operating system that will run on Apple's rumored mixed reality headset, have been found in App Store upload logs and Apple open-source code this week.
Apple is widely rumored to be working on an AR/VR headset that could launch in late 2022, but due to reported development challenges, a launch could be pushed back to some point in 2023.
Check out our video overview of the latest rumors on the headset, and let us know whether you'd be willing to spend $2,000+ on it!
Tesla Design Chief on Apple Products: 'There's Nothing to Look Forward To'
Tesla design chief Franz von Holzhausen recently commented on Apple's design principles and product launches, lamenting that Apple doesn't deliver something "to look forward to" anymore.
While admitting that he wears an Apple Watch for fitness tracking purposes, von Holzhausen opined that Apple's devices have become "just a continuation" and a "slight refinement on the same thing."
Apple Hit With Class Action Lawsuit Over 'Jelly Scrolling' on iPad Mini
A Colorado man this week filed a class action lawsuit against Apple that accuses the company of fraudulently marketing and selling the sixth-generation iPad mini despite being aware of a so-called "jelly scrolling" defect with the device.
Apple last year told Ars Technica that the effect is normal behavior for LCD screens, but the lawsuit alleges that "jelly scrolling" is actually a defect that Apple is aware of and should either fix or acknowledge in marketing materials for the device.
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.