Best Buy this weekend has a big sale on Apple MacBooks and iPads, including new all-time low prices on the M3 MacBook Air, alongside the best prices we've ever seen on MacBook Pro, iPad, and more. Some of these deals require a My Best Buy Plus or My Best Buy Total membership, which start at $49.99/year. In addition to exclusive access to select discounts, you'll get free 2-day shipping, an extended 60-day return window, and more.

new best buy blueNote: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Best Buy. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running.

9th Gen iPad

ipad best buy blue
Starting with the cheapest iPad in this sale, you can get the 64GB Wi-Fi 9th generation iPad at $249.99, down from $329.00. My Best Buy Plus/Total members can also get a low price on the 256GB Wi-Fi model this weekend at $379.99.


10th Gen iPad

new ipad blue
For a more recent model, Best Buy has the 64GB Wi-Fi 10th generation iPad at $349.00, which is an all-time low price at $100 off. You'll find every model of the 10th generation iPad on sale at a record low price during this sale. This includes all Wi-Fi and cellular tablets, in all colors.




13-inch M2 MacBook Air

macbook air bb blue
Every model of the 2022 13-inch MacBook Air is available for $150 off this weekend at Best Buy. The 256GB model is on sale for $849.00 and the 512GB model is available for $1,049.00. These deals beat the previous prices by about $50, and you don't need to be a My Best Buy Plus or Total member to get them.


15-inch M2 MacBook Air

new macbook air blue
The 256GB M2 15-inch MacBook Air is priced at $999.00, down from $1,299.00. You can also get the 512GB M2 model on sale at $1,199.00, down from $1,499.00. Across the board these are the best prices we've ever seen on the M2 MacBook Air.


15-inch M3 MacBook Air

new macbook air blue 3
For the latest M3 model of the 15-inch MacBook Air, you can get the 8GB RAM/256GB SSD 15-inch M3 MacBook Air for $1,149.00, down from $1,299.00. The 8GB RAM/512GB SSD model is available for $1,349.00, down from $1,499.00, and the 16GB RAM/512GB SSD model is available for $1,549.00, down from $1,699.00. These deals require a My Best Buy Plus/Total membership.

Note: You will need a My Best Buy Plus/Total membership to see this low price.



M3 MacBook Pro

m3 macbook pro new blue
These deals are focused on the 14-inch models of the MacBook Pro, and only a select few are being discounted for My Best Buy Plus/Total members. If you don't have a membership, you can still get these computers for solid second-best prices this weekend.

Note: My Best Buy Plus/Total membership required to see final deal price.



Our full Deals Roundup has more information on the latest Apple-related sales and bargains.

Related Roundup: Apple Deals

Apple's hardware roadmap was in the news this week, with things hopefully firming up for a launch of updated iPad Pro and iPad Air models next month while we look ahead to the other iPad models and a full lineup of M4-based Macs arriving starting later this year.

top stories 13apr2024
We also heard some fresh rumors about iOS 18, due to be unveiled at WWDC in a couple of months, while we took a look at how things are going with the iPhone 15 Pro now that it's halfway through its flagship lifecycle, so read on below for all the details on these stories and more!

Macs to Get AI-Focused M4 Chips Starting in Late 2024

Apple plans to release its first Macs with the M4 series of chips in late 2024, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman.

M4 AI Optimized Feature Teal
The report says that the MacBook Pro and iMac lines will be the first to be updated with the M4 series of chips later this year, while other models like the MacBook Air, Mac mini, Mac Studio, and Mac Pro are expected to be updated with M4 series chips throughout 2025.

Gurman said the chips are "designed to highlight artificial intelligence" capabilities on the Mac.

New iPads Likely to Launch During Second Week of May

In the latest edition of his newsletter, Bloomberg's Mark Gurman said new iPad Pro and iPad Air models will likely launch during the second week of May, following reported manufacturing delays.

M3 iPad Feature 3
He also said Apple is working on new iPad mini and entry-level iPad models, but he does not expect those devices to launch until later this year.

It has been nearly 18 months since Apple last released new iPads.

Review: Six Months With the iPhone 15 Pro

It's been a bit over six months since the iPhone 15 lineup came out in September, and MacRumors videographer Dan Barbera has been using an iPhone 15 Pro Max sans case since launch. Over on our YouTube channel, Dan did a long-term review to demo how his phone has held up and his thoughts on the Action button, battery life, and camera features.

iPhone 15 6 Months Later Thumb 3
If you're an ‌iPhone 15 Pro‌ owner, let us know how your battery life is holding up, whether you're regularly using the Action button, and anything else you've found interesting about your experience with Apple's latest high-end flagship phone!

Here Are All the Rumored iPhone 16 Colors

We recently recapped all rumored color options for the iPhone 16, iPhone 16 Plus, iPhone 16 Pro, and iPhone 16 Pro Max, so be sure to check out the list to learn about the new options expected.

iPhone 16 Camera Lozenge 2 Colors
At least two new color options are rumored for the lower-end iPhone 16 and iPhone 16 Plus models, including Purple and White, while the Pro models could gain new Space Black and Rose Gold titanium finishes.

iOS 18 May Feature All-New 'Safari Browsing Assistant'

One of the new generative AI features rumored to be coming to the iPhone with iOS 18 could be a browsing assistant in Safari, according to backend code discovered on Apple's servers.

iOS 18 WWDC 24 Feature 2
While no specific details about the browsing assistant are known, the feature could allow Safari to better compete with other AI-infused web browsers available on the iPhone, such as Microsoft Edge and Arc Search.

The MacRumors Show: Apple Shortcuts and iOS 18 ft. Matthew Cassinelli

Matthew Cassinelli, one of the minds behind Workflow, joined Dan and Hartley on this week's episode of The MacRumors Show to talk Apple Shortcuts and potential improvements and AI features coming to the app in iOS 18.

The MacRumors Show Apple Shortchuts and iOS 18
Last week's episode included discussion of Apple's potential foray into robots, along with discoveries made in the iOS 17.5 beta, rumors about a new Apple Pencil, and more.

Subscribe to The MacRumors Show channel on YouTube, and listen to the podcast in Apple Podcasts or your preferred podcast app.

MacRumors Newsletter

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.

So if you want to have top stories like the above recap delivered to your email inbox each week, subscribe to our newsletter!

A recent video uploaded to the Apple Support channel on YouTube offers five helpful tips and tricks for AirPods that you may not have known about.


AirPods features highlighted in the video include Audio Sharing, Live Listen, Background Sounds, Announce Notifications with Siri, and the ability to rename AirPods in the Settings app on the iPhone. Most of these functions are available on all AirPods models, but Announce Notifications with Siri does not work with first-generation AirPods.

If you own AirPods Pro, also check out our guide covering the latest features added with iOS 17, such as Conversation Awareness and Personalized Volume.

Waiting for new AirPods? Find out when to expect the AirPods 4 and new AirPods Max.

Related Roundups: AirPods 3, AirPods Max, AirPods Pro
Related Forum: AirPods

Matthew Cassinelli, one of the minds behind Workflow, joins us on this week's episode of The MacRumors Show to talk Apple Shortcuts and potential improvements and AI features coming to the app in iOS 18.


Workflow was a unique iOS app that allowed users to create macros for executing specific sequential tasks on their device. In 2017, Apple acquired Workflow and, the following year, it was rebranded as "Shortcuts." Shortcuts have since become a key part of Apple's ecosystem and can be used for a huge range of powerful, automated actions. Matthew was present at Workflow throughout its transition to Apple and now offers his own library of complex Shortcuts, which you can access over on his website.

Last year, a report from The Information claimed that ‌iOS 18‌ will introduce some major AI features to Siri and the Shortcuts app. Apple apparently wants ‌‌Siri‌‌ to be able to help users automate complex, multi-step tasks with voice-based commands and have much deeper integration with Shortcuts, such as by potentially helping users build them.

We break down Apple Shortcuts for beginners and look at some of the many use-cases for the app, as well as consider where it could go next with AI. The MacRumors Show is now on its own YouTube channel, so make sure you're subscribed to keep up with new episodes and clips going forward:

You can also listen to ‌The MacRumors Show‌ on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Overcast, or your preferred podcasts app. You can also copy our RSS feed directly into your podcast player.


If you haven't already listened to the previous episode of The MacRumors Show, catch up for our discussion about Apple's recently rumored "personal robotics" projects, iOS 17.5, Apple Pencil rumors, and more.

Subscribe to ‌The MacRumors Show‌ for new episodes every week, where we discuss some of the topical news breaking here on MacRumors, often joined by interesting guests such as Brian Tong, Quinn Nelson, Kevin Nether, Jared Nelson, Eli Hodapp, Luke Miani, Mike Bell, Sara Dietschy, iJustine, Jon Rettinger, Andru Edwards, Arnold Kim, Ben Sullins, Marcus Kane, Christopher Lawley, Frank McShan, David Lewis, Tyler Stalman, Jon Prosser, Sam Kohl, John Gruber, Federico Viticci, Thomas Frank, Jonathan Morrison, Ross Young, Ian Zelbo, and Rene Ritchie.

‌The MacRumors Show‌ is on X @MacRumorsShow, so be sure to give us a follow to keep up with the podcast. You can also head over to The MacRumors Show forum thread to engage with us directly. Remember to rate and review the podcast, and let us know what subjects and guests you would like to see in the future.

This week's best deals can all be found on Amazon, which is hosting steep discounts on the AirPods Pro 2, Apple Watch Series 9, and the M3 iMac.

Hero0005Note: 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.

AirPods Pro 2

airpods pro pink

  • What's the deal? Get $60 off AirPods Pro 2 with USB-C
  • Where can I get it? Amazon
  • Where can I find the original deal? Right here

Amazon returned this week with a low price on the AirPods Pro 2 with USB-C, available for $189.00, down from $249.00.

Apple Watch Series 9

red apple watch 9

  • What's the deal? Get $104 off Apple Watch Series 9
  • Where can I get it? Amazon
  • Where can I find the original deal? Right here

Moving on to the Apple Watch, Amazon introduced a new all-time low price on the 41mm GPS Series 9 model this week. You can get the (PRODUCT)RED model for $295.20 in the M/L Sport Band size.

iMac

imac pink

  • What's the deal? Get $149 off M3 iMac
  • Where can I get it? Amazon
  • Where can I find the original deal? Right here

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



Capping off the week, Amazon introduced new record low prices across the M3 iMac lineup, providing $149 off nearly every model. You'll need to clip an on-page coupon in order to see all of these deals at the checkout screen.

Be sure to visit our full Deals Roundup to shop for even more Apple-related products and accessories.

Related Roundup: Apple Deals

Pixelmator Pro 3.5.8 has gone live on the Mac App Store, and the latest update to the popular image editing app brings the ability to edit text in PDFs, along with a handful of other notable additions.

pixelmator pro pdf text editing
Pixelmator recently added support to the app for vector PDFs, which allows users to import image, shape, and text elements in the portable document format as separate layers.

With the newest version, this support has been expanded so that users can edit imported text as regular text layers. In practice, this means existing text in PDFs can be more easily replaced, formatted, and styled using Pixelmator Pro tools. As the developers explain:

Typically, text in PDF documents is not directly editable. Instead, it's stored as vector shapes to keep documents looking consistent across various platforms and apps. To make text editable again, Pixelmator Pro extracts various embedded data from the original PDF, allowing it to recover the original text, fonts, and formatting. Even if some of these elements are missing, for instance, if the original font is not installed on your Mac, you can still import the text, select a different font, and continue with your edits.

In addition, the new text editing abilities mean users can seamlessly export Apple Keynote and Pages projects and continue editing them in Pixelmator Pro. All text remains fully editable in its original fonts, including the SF Pro font that is used throughout the Apple ecosystem.

Elsewhere in this update, the Style tool has been improved to simplify the creation of custom outlines around text layers. Users now have the option to add strokes inside, within, or outside of the text, choose from various stroke ends and corners, and also add dashed strokes.

Pixelmator Pro 3.5.8 also includes 12 new templates for web, social media, and more. All of the templates include a set of alternative color palettes for adjusting the theme to custom requirements.

Pixelmator Pro is available exclusively from the Mac App Store as a free update for existing users and $49.99 for new customers. A free seven-day trial of the software with no restrictions is also available on the Pixelmator website.

Several third-party browser companies have experienced a spike in iPhone installs since Apple made major changes to iOS in order to comply with the Digital Markets Act in the European Union, but many are not happy with Apple's implementation of its default browser choice screen.

alternative browser list eu
In iOS 17.4, released last month, Apple no longer limits EU users to the handful of browser options that iOS currently offers as alternatives in other parts of the world. Instead, users in the EU who open Safari for the first time are presented with a choice screen that allows them to opt for a new default browser from a list of popular alternatives in their country.

The change has led to a sharp increase in third-party browser usage, based on several reports. On Wednesday, Reuters reported that users of privacy-first browser Aloha had jumped 250% in March. The jump in users largely came in France, Belgium (3x growth), Germany, The Netherlands, Spain and Sweden (2.5x growth), and Denmark, Italy and Poland (2x growth).

Aloha browser markets itself as a privacy focused alternative to browsers that earns its money through paid subscriptions rather than selling ads by tracking users. The Cyprus-based company says it has 10 million monthly average users.

"Before, EU was our number four market, right now it's number two," Aloha CEO Andrew Frost Moroz said in an interview with Reuters.

Norway's Vivaldi browser, Germany's Ecosia and U.S.-based Brave have all seen user numbers rise following the new regulation. U.S.-based DuckDuckGo, which has about 100 million users, and its more popular rival, Norway-based Opera, have also reported substantial increases.

To be eligible for consideration in the alternative browsers list, companies must have the Default Browser Entitlement that is available to developers. Apple also requires that the app has been downloaded by at least 5,000 ‌iPhone‌ users‌ across all 27 EU countries in the prior calendar year. Apple selects up to 11 of these for the browser choice screen in addition to Safari, updating the list once per calendar year.

Google has also updated its Pixel software to show alternative browser choices, and says that new Android devices made by other companies will also display the choice screen in the coming months.

Despite users increasingly choosing alternative options, browser companies have criticized Apple and Google for the slow rollout of the change, and believe it is hampering the migration away from Safari and Chrome. Mozilla, which owns Firefox, estimates that only around a fifth of ‌iPhone‌ users in the EU have received the iOS update, and claims that the rollout is much slower than Apple's previous software updates.

Some alternative browser makers are also concerned that the design of choice screens is sub-optimal at best. For example, Vivaldi CEO Jon Stephenson von Tetzchner notes that Apple's choice screen only appears when ‌iPhone‌ users open Safari, while the list of browsers provides no additional information.

"The process is just so convoluted that it's easiest for (users) to select Safari or potentially some other known name," he told Reuters.

Vivaldi is also unhappy with the design. "The list of browsers does not show additional information and that does not help users to make a meaningful choice," a company spokesperson told TechCrunch. "If the user has already selected a browser of their own choice, the choice screen can actively try to push them away from it, and may not even include it in the list that it presents to the user."

Ecosia has also been critical, and says Apple's implementation involves an "overly complex installation process" and keeps Safari front and center on the user's ‌iPhone‌ Home screen.

The European Commission is currently investigating Apple's choice screen design for suspected noncompliance. The probe is being conducted in consultation with browser companies, who are likely to encourage regulators to push for a stronger implementation to level the competitive playing field.

Google One VPN will be discontinued later this year, according to a customer email seen by Android Authority. The service was rolled out for Android in October 2020, before coming to iOS devices and Macs in 2022.

google one vpn fixed
When it originally launched it was part of Google One's Premium 2TB storage plan, priced at $9.99 per month or $99.99 per year. Last year, availability was expanded to all Google One plans, including the cheapest offering for $1.99 per month, making it significantly more affordable.

The company told 9to5Google that it is killing the service because "people simply weren't using it." Existing users will be directed to third-party VPN alternatives instead.

Google will continue to offer VPN functionality through its Google Fi cellular service. Google says Pixel users will also still be able to access its VPN features via Pixel settings if they have a Pixel 7 or newer model.

Tags: Google, VPN

DuckDuckGo today announced the launch of Privacy Pro, a new subscription service that bundles three privacy-focused features together.

duckduckgo privacy pro
Privacy Pro includes a VPN for anonymous browsing and secure connections regardless of location, personal information removal for removing personal data from data broker sites, and identity theft restoration should any DuckDuckGo subscriber suffer from an identity theft situation.

The VPN works on up to five devices simultaneously, so it can be installed and used on a Mac, iPhone, iPad, and other devices at the same time. It is turned on through the DuckDuckGo browser so a second app is not required, and it does filter traffic through all apps and browsers.

DuckDuckGo's personal information removal tool regularly scans 50 sites that sell information, such as Spokeo. Personal information is stored on device, and removal requests are initiated using the information provided during setup. The process is automated, and there is a dashboard to monitor results.

Identity theft restoration includes the support of a dedicated advisor that will work with users to restore stolen accounts, replace bank cards and other identifying documents, recover financial losses, and correct credit reports.

Privacy Pro from DuckDuckGo is priced at $9.99 per month or $99.99 per year, and it is currently only available in the United States. Users will need to ensure they are using the latest version of the DuckDuckGo browser to take advantage of the features.

Popular home lighting company Nanoleaf today introduced its latest product, Smart Multicolor Outdoor String Lights that bring HomeKit-compatible decorative lighting to decks, porches, backyards, gardens, pool areas, and more.

nanoleaf outdoor lights 1
Nanoleaf is known for unique light designs, and the Outdoor String Lights aren't an exception. The bulbs have an angular five-sided shape that makes them more geometric than soft. They're made from a hard, clear plastic material and they look like they're made from crystal or ice. If you want cozy, romantic-style lighting, Nanoleaf's lights might not be the right vibe because of the shape, but if you want lights that are fun and eye-catching, these are perfect.

There are multicolor LEDs in each bulb, so you can control the lights individually and set them to any color, including shades of white. If you unscrew one of the bulbs, there's actually a second protective plastic dome inside that further diffuses the light. The bulb shape might not have a cozy feel, but the lights can be soft yellows and whites, or any other shade of the rainbow, plus there are dimming controls. The colors are accurate and it does well with blues, purples, and greens, shades that can sometimes be off with LED lighting.

The Outdoor String Lights are meant for ambient lighting, and even at 100 percent brightness, they're on the dimmer side depending on the colors used. Nanoleaf says they're 55 lumens per bulb, so a 15-meter strand is 1100 lumens total. These are available in 15-meter (49ft) and 30-meter lengths (98ft), with the 15-meter version offering 20 bulbs and the 30-meter version offering 40 bulbs.

nanoleaf outdoor lights 2
Strands can be connected together, but the maximum length is 45 meters or 147 feet, equivalent to one 30-meter strand and one 15-meter expansion. For anything longer, you'll need separate sets with multiple power supplies. The lights have thick black cabling for weather protection, so these are probably not string lights you're going to want to use indoors unless you have a room where an industrial look works.

There's 6.5 feet of cord between the power supply and the controller and then another foot or so between the controller and the first light. The bulbs are spaced about two feet apart, and they hang down four inches, so they look best when draped down across beams or using outdoor light poles.

The lights have IP65 water resistance and the controller is IP67 rated, so they can be used outdoors in the rain and elements without protection all year. Nanoleaf offers a two-year warranty on the lights.

nanoleaf outdoor lights 3
In terms of aesthetics, the Nanoleaf Outdoor Lights are great, but connectivity needs improvement. These connect to HomeKit through Matter, and Matter devices continue to face issues on Apple's platform. I think it's more of an Apple issue than a Nanoleaf issue because I see these same Matter problems regardless of device, but it's a problem any potential buyer needs to be aware of.

The Outdoor String Lights have randomly disconnected or become unreachable for no particular reason a handful of times. Sometimes unplugging them fixes it, and sometimes they just start working again after being unreachable. As a caveat, I don't know if the Matter/‌HomeKit‌ interoperability issue I have is exacerbated by my Wi-Fi network or other factors. I have an Orbi mesh Wi-Fi 6E network, and while my standard ‌HomeKit‌ products seem to generally be reliable (especially those with hubs), Matter is not. The Outdoor String Lights are mostly functional and the disconnects aren't constant, but it is worth noting that the lights may not always work seamlessly for ‌HomeKit‌ users.

I would have preferred native ‌HomeKit‌ support to Matter for the lights, but these are Matter only. There is no Thread support, and as with other Nanoleaf products, you can only use a 2.4GHz network.

On a more positive note, Nanoleaf has one of the better smart home apps. There are built-in scenes available in the app for the Outdoor String Lights, but I can also create my own or use scenes created by other Nanoleaf users. Nanoleaf also has an AI feature where you can type in any phrase like "tropical sunset" or "ocean waves" to get a custom scene in colors that match what you're aiming for.

nanoleaf outdoor lights 4
The AI works with a fairly wide range of suggestions, and I get a good range of colors. The only downside is that it appears to have a single color-shifting pattern, but Nanoleaf does support other patterns when you create your own scenes or download them. As these are able to connect to ‌HomeKit‌ via Matter, you can use Siri commands and turn them on and off with the Home app.

The Home app also supports automations for turning the Outdoor Lights on and off at select times or pairing them with other ‌HomeKit‌ devices.

Bottom Line

The Nanoleaf Outdoor String Lights are some of the neatest outdoor lights that I've seen, and the multicolored LEDs pair well with the geometric shape. These are expensive and are not cost efficient if you have a large area to cover in lights, but one or two strands will elevate any outdoor setup.

I have not seen flawless operation from the Outdoor String Lights, and have had to deal with some disconnects, so that's something to be aware of. I am hopeful that Apple and Nanoleaf updates in the future will fix any of the lingering issues that Matter-enabled devices are still experiencing.

How to Buy

Nanoleaf's Outdoor String Lights can be purchased from the Nanoleaf website. A 15-meter strand is priced at $100, and a 30-meter strand is priced at $180. Additional 15-meter expansion packs are available for $70.

Note: Nanoleaf provided MacRumors with a set of Outdoor String Lights for the purpose of this review. No other compensation was received.

Apple will begin updating its Mac lineup with M4 chips in late 2024, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. The M4 chip will be focused on improving performance for artificial intelligence capabilities.

apple silicon feature joeblue
Last year, Apple introduced the M3, M3 Pro, and M3 Max chips all at once in October, so it's possible we could see the M4 lineup come during the same time frame. Gurman says that the entire Mac lineup is slated to get the M4 across late 2024 and early 2025.

The iMac, low-end 14-inch MacBook Pro, high-end 14-inch MacBook Pro, 16-inch MacBook Pro, and Mac mini machines will be updated with M4 chips first, followed by the 13-inch and 15-inch MacBook Air models in spring 2025, the Mac Studio in mid-2025, and the Mac Pro later in 2025.

Apple is said to be nearing production of the M4 processor, and it is expected to come in at least three main varieties. Chips are codenamed Donan for the low-end, Brava for the mid-tier, and Hidra for the top-end. The Donan chip will be used in the entry-level MacBook Pro, the ‌MacBook Air‌ machines, and the low-end ‌Mac mini‌, and the Brava chips will be used in the higher-end MacBook Pro and the higher-end ‌Mac mini‌.

The Hidra chip is designed for the ‌Mac Pro‌, which suggests it is an "Ultra" or "Extreme" tier chip. As for the ‌Mac Studio‌, Apple is testing versions with an unreleased M3-era chip and a variation of the M4 Brava processor that would presumably be higher tier than the M4 Pro and M4 Max "Brava" chips.

M4 versions of the Mac desktops could support as much as 512GB Unified Memory, which would be a marked jump over the current 192GB limit.

The M4 chips will be built on the same 3-nanometer process as the M3 chips, but Apple supplier TSMC will likely use an improved version of the 3nm process for boosts in performance and power efficiency. Apple also plans to add a much improved Neural Engine that has an increased number of cores for AI tasks.

Apple today announced that customers and independent repair shops will be able to repair select iPhones with used genuine Apple parts starting later this year. Alongside the announcement, Apple's hardware engineering chief John Ternus spoke with TechCrunch about the iPhone's controversial "parts pairing" process.

iPhone 15 General Feature Black
Repair website iFixit criticized Apple's parts pairing process last year, and Oregon recently passed a law that would ban Apple from using a "parts pairing" process in the state for devices manufactured after January 1, 2025.

Ternus argued that iPhones still work with most third-party parts:

"'Parts pairing' is used a lot outside and has this negative connotation," Apple senior vice president of hardware engineering, John Ternus, tells TechCrunch. "I think it's led people to believe that we somehow block third-party parts from working, which we don't. The way we look at it is, we need to know what part is in the device, for a few reasons. One, we need to authenticate that it's a real Apple biometric device and that it hasn't been spoofed or something like that. … Calibration is the other one."

One exception is third-party parts related to Face ID and Touch ID, which do not work in iPhones for security reasons, according to Ternus:

"You think about Touch ID and Face ID and the criticality of their security because of how much of our information is on our phones," says Ternus. "Our entire life is on our phones. We have no way of validating the performance of any third-party biometrics. That's an area where we don't enable the use of third-party modules for the key security functions. But in all other aspects, we do."

Apple does alert customers if an iPhone part is not genuine. If an iPhone has been repaired, a "Parts and Service History" section appears in the Settings app under General → About, and it shows if non-genuine Apple parts have been installed.

Ternus said this transparency surrounding repairs is important:

"We have hundreds of millions of iPhones in use that are second- or third-hand devices," he explains. "They're a great way for people to get into the iPhone experience at a lower price point. We think it's important for them to have the transparency of: was a repair done on this device? What part was used? That sort of thing."

Apple says it will be expanding the "Parts and Service History" section to show whether a used part is a genuine Apple part later this year. For more details about used parts being allowed for repairs, read our earlier coverage.

Amazon today has a big sale on the newest 24-inch M3 iMac, including both 256GB and 512GB models. All of these deals require you to clip an on-page coupon in order to see the final deal price at the checkout screen, and in every case these are all-time low prices.

iMac Deals TealNote: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Amazon. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running.

Starting with the 8-core GPU/256GB M3 iMac, this model is available for $1,149.99 in two colors with the on-page coupon, down from $1,299.00. Amazon also has the 10-core GPU/256GB M3 iMac on sale for $1,349.99 with a coupon, down from $1,499.00. This one is available in four colors.

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



Lastly, the 10-core GPU/512GB M3 iMac has hit $1,549.99 in three colors, down from $1,699.00. All of Amazon's deals today are record low prices on the M3 iMac, and right now only Amazon is offering these steep discounts.

Apple launched the M3 iMac back in October 2023, bringing significant speed and efficiency improvements with the upgrade from the M1 to the M3 chip. Otherwise, there are no major design changes to the newest iMac model. 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 today announced that customers and independent repair shops will be able to utilize used genuine Apple parts in repairs starting later this year.

Apple Self Service Repair Program iPhone
Apple told The Washington Post that the new policy will initially apply to parts for iPhone 15 models and newer, including screens, batteries, and cameras. Apple's press release said the policy will eventually extend to used biometric sensors for Face ID and Touch ID. Apple's existing parts "pairing" process will confirm whether or not a used part is genuine.

In the fall, Apple says calibration for both new and used genuine Apple parts will happen on device after the part is installed. If an iPhone has been repaired, a "Parts and Service History" section appears in the Settings app under General → About, and Apple says it will be expanding this section to show whether a genuine part is new or used.

Apple also announced that customers and service providers will no longer need to provide a device's serial number when ordering parts from its self-service repair store for repairs not involving replacement of the logic board.

To deter stolen iPhones from being disassembled for parts, Apple said it will be extending its Activation Lock security feature to iPhone parts:

Apple will also extend its popular Activation Lock feature to iPhone parts in order to deter stolen iPhones from being disassembled for parts. Requested by customers and law enforcement officials, the feature was designed to limit iPhone theft by blocking a lost or stolen iPhone from being reactivated. If a device under repair detects that a supported part was obtained from another device with Activation Lock or Lost Mode enabled, calibration capabilities for that part will be restricted.

Apple's hardware engineering chief John Ternus said the new policy will be more environmentally friendly by extending the lifespan of parts:

For the last two years, teams across Apple have been innovating on product design and manufacturing to support repairs with used Apple parts that won't compromise users' safety, security, or privacy. With this latest expansion to our repair program, we're excited to be adding even more choice and convenience for our customers, while helping to extend the life of our products and their parts.

Apple said the policy will apply to future iPhone models.

Google next month will make its latest AI-powered photo editing feature available to all users of Google Photos on iOS, the company has announced.

google photos magic editor
Magic Editor, which featured heavily in last year's Google Pixel 8 series marketing blitz, uses generative AI to perform complicated photo edits, such as filling in gaps in a photo, repositioning subjects, and additional foreground/background adjustments like making a cloudy, grey sky look blue.

The edits mimic the kind of possibilities afforded by more professional editing tools like Photoshop, except Magic Editor achieves its automated results via AI, rather than the user having to do them manually.

The editing tool debuted as one of the headline AI features on the company's flagship phone when it launched six months ago, and has since been exclusive to Google Pixel 8 owners and Google One subscribers. The tool will become available to all users of Google Photos starting May 15.

Google Photos for iOS and Android will include 10 Magic Editor saves per month. To use more than that, users will need to buy a Premium Google One plan, which starts at 2TB of storage for $10 per month or $100 annually.

In addition to Magic Editor, Google is bringing several more editing tools to Google Photos, including Photo Unblur, Sky suggestions, Color pop, HDR effect for photos and videos, Portrait Blur, Portrait Light (plus its add light/balance light features), Cinematic Photos, Styles in the Collage Editor, and Video Effects.

To use the AI features, Apple devices must be running iOS 15 or later. Google Photos is a free download for iPhone and iPad available on the App Store.

Apple on Wednesday sent threat notifications to users in 92 countries warning that they may have been targeted by mercenary spyware attacks, likely because of who they are or what they do.

apple security banner
According to TechCrunch, Apple sent the alerts to the individuals at 12 p.m. Pacific Time, delivered via email and iMessage using the contact details associated with the user's Apple ID. A notification also appears at the top of the page if the user signs into appleid.apple.com.

"Apple detected that you are being targeted by a mercenary spyware attack that is trying to remotely compromise the iPhone associated with your Apple ID -xxx-," the company wrote in the warning to affected customers. "We are unable to provide more information about what caused us to send you this notification, as that may help mercenary spyware attackers adapt their behavior to evade detection in the future."

"This attack is likely targeting you specifically because of who you are or what you do. Although it's never possible to achieve absolute certainty when detecting such attacks, Apple has high confidence in this warning — please take it seriously," added the warning.

In an updated support document, Apple said it has sent similar threat notifications to users in over 150 countries since 2021. "The extreme cost, sophistication, and worldwide nature of mercenary spyware attacks makes them some of the most advanced digital threats in existence today," said the company. "As a result, Apple does not attribute the attacks or resulting threat notifications to any specific attackers or geographical regions."

Last October, Apple sent similar warnings to some journalists and politicians in India. Soon after, nonprofit advocacy group Amnesty International reported that it had found Israeli cyber-arms company NSO Group's invasive spyware Pegasus on the iPhones of prominent journalists in India. Users in India are among those who received the latest threat notifications, according to people familiar with the matter who spoke to TechCrunch.

The alerts come at a time when many nations are preparing for democratic elections. Apple previously described the attackers as "state-sponsored" in the support document, but has replaced those references with "mercenary spyware attacks." The warning to customers reads: "Mercenary spyware attacks, such as those using Pegasus from the NSO Group, are exceptionally rare and vastly more sophisticated than regular cybercriminal activity or consumer malware."

Apple advises those who have received a threat notification to seek expert help, such as the rapid-response emergency security assistance provided by the Digital Security Helpline at the nonprofit Access Now. Apple threat notification recipients can contact the Digital Security Helpline 24 hours a day, seven days a week through their website.

Users who have not received an Apple threat notification but have good reason to believe they may be individually targeted by mercenary spyware attacks are advised to enable Lockdown Mode on their devices for additional protection.

The touch-related bug that was known to be impacting the Apple Watch Series 9 and the Apple Watch Ultra 2 also affects the Apple Watch Series 7, Series 8, and Ultra 1, Apple said in a memo shared with Apple Authorized Service Providers.

apple watch series 8 green
Service providers have been told not to replace watches for the ghost touch problem, instead instructing customers to fix the issue through a force restart. A force restart can be initiated by simultaneously holding down the side button and the Digital Crown for 10 seconds. AASPs have also been asked to make sure affected Apple Watches are running the latest version of watchOS.

Apple first began looking into the touch-related problem affecting some Apple Watch models in February. At the time, it was a bug that had been seen on the Series 9 and the Ultra 2. Apple Watch owners were experiencing "false" or "ghost" touches on the display, which could cause the screen to "jump erratically" or exhibit unexpected behavior without user interaction.

A fix for the ghost touch issue was added in watchOS 10.4, so presumably that version of the software addresses the issue on all impacted models. If not, the wording of Apple's memo suggests a further fix will be coming in the near future.

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 192 includes fixes and updates for Authentication, CSS, Editing, JavaScript, Media, Rendering, Web API, and Web Extensions.

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.