MacRumors.com needs your permission to enable desktop notifications when new articles are published. X

New in OS X: Get MacRumors Push Notifications on your Mac

Resubscribe Now Close

Apple TV+ Drama Series 'Truth Be Told' Premieres in Los Angeles Ahead of December 6 Debut

Apple premiered its limited drama series "Truth Be Told" at The Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Los Angeles, California, on Monday night.

Octavia Spencer

Set to debut on Apple TV+ next month, the show stars Octavia Spencer in the role of Poppy Parnell, a podcaster who aims to reopen a murder case that she was involved in solving 18 years earlier that put Warren Cave (played by Aaron Paul) behind bars.

Spencer's character is unsure if she made a mistake when she helped put Paul's character (Warren Cave) in prison, and with her podcast, she tries to discover the truth and determine whether Cave was wrongfully convicted.

Based on the novel by Kathleen Barber, "Truth Be Told" is said to offer a unique glimpse into America's obsession with true crime podcasts and challenges its viewers to consider the consequences when the pursuit of justice is placed on a public stage.

Beginning December 6, the first three episodes of “Truth Be Told” will be available to watch on ‌Apple TV‌+ in over 100 countries and regions around the world. New episodes will continue to roll out weekly, every Friday. You can watch the trailer here.


Left to right: Haneefah Wood, Mekhi Phifer, Ron Cephas Jones, Annabella Sciorra, Elizabeth Perkins, Reese Witherspoon, Nichelle Tramble Spellman, Octavia Spencer, Aaron Paul, Michael Beach.


‌Apple TV‌+ costs $4.99 per month with a family of six able to watch for that price point. Apple is also providing customers who purchase an ‌Apple TV‌, Mac, iPad, or iPhone with a free one-year subscription.

Show Full Article

Disney+ Streaming Service is Now Available to Watch on iOS, tvOS, and More

Disney's new streaming service, Disney+, is now available in the United States and can be accessed across a range of supported devices, including iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, Android smartphones, Roku streaming boxes, Amazon Fire TV, and more. You can download the Disney+ app on iOS and tvOS, sign up for the service at $6.99/month or $69.99/year, and then begin watching your favorite Disney shows and movies.


At launch, Disney+ already has one of the biggest back catalogs of content among the major streaming services, stretching back over a half century to include classic Disney films like Snow White and the Seven Dwarves, Bambi, and Miracle on 34th Street. Disney+ content ranges from 1937 to 2019, essentially including every film produced under The Walt Disney company umbrella, as well as its subsidiaries including Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, and National Geographic.

In addition to classic content, Disney is producing new shows, movies, and documentaries for Disney+. Today you can watch new TV shows like The Mandalorian, Encore!, The World According to Jeff Goldblum, and High School Musical: The Musical: The Series. Original movies include Noelle starring Anna Kendrick and the Lady and the Tramp reboot starring Justin Theroux and Tessa Thompson. There are also behind-the-scenes looks at aspects of the Disney company, including One Day at Disney, which highlights daily routines of cast members at Disney Parks.

Disney+ is launching just a few days after Apple debuted its own streaming TV service, which also uses the "plus" naming style, called ‌Apple TV‌+. On Apple's service you can pay $4.99/month to watch a handful of original TV shows like The Morning Show, For All Mankind, Dickinson, See, Ghostwriter, Helpsters, and Snoopy in Space. Apple plans to add new shows and movies monthly, next up including Servant from producer M. Night Shyamalan and The Banker with Samuel L. Jackson and Anthony Mackie.

Disney+ is compatible with the ‌Apple TV‌ app, so all of the TV shows and movies you stream in the Disney+ app will be updated and added to Up Next in the TV app, which also syncs to iOS. For more information on Disney+ and all of the content that you can watch inside of the new service, check out Disney's website and head to the App Store to download the app on iOS today.

Show Full Article

New AR Sensor Coming to 2020 iPad Pro and iPhone Models, AR/VR Headset as Soon as 2021

Following a report from The Information this morning summarizing a recent internal Apple meeting that pegged the release of Apple's augmented reality headsets for the 2022–23 timeframe rather than the more aggressive 2020 window that has previously been rumored, Bloomberg's Mark Gurman has shared additional information on the company's AR roadmap that will initially focus on the iPad and iPhone before the glasses come to fruition.

"Apple Glasses" concept

Gurman says Apple is working on "a range of augmented and virtual-reality devices" based around a new 3D sensor system, which will arrive first on a new iPad Pro slated for release in the first half of next year, and followed by the 2020 iPhones later in the year.
A new ‌iPad Pro‌ for release as early as the first half of 2020 will feature a new module with two camera sensors, up from one on the current model, and a small hole for the 3-D system, letting people create three-dimensional reconstructions of rooms, objects and people. The Cupertino, California-based technology giant also plans to add the sensor to new high-end iPhones later in 2020, along with 5G networking capabilities, said the people, who asked not to be identified discussing unannounced products.
Moving beyond existing devices, Apple is said to be targeting 2021 or 2022 for the release of a combination VR and AR headset focused on "gaming, watching video and virtual meetings." A lighter weight set of AR glasses could follow as soon as 2023.

The 3D sensor system to be used in the upcoming is said to be a more advanced version of the current Face ID sensor, and Apple's engineering teams are working on creating linkages to the new "rOS" operating system for these headsets that will let them work with existing iOS devices.

For more on Apple's AR/VR project, check out the full report over at bloomberg.com.

Related Roundup: Apple Glasses
Show Full Article

16-Inch MacBook Pro Production Reportedly Underway as Launch Timing Remains Uncertain

Apple's widely rumored 16-inch MacBook Pro is likely still coming based on recent supply chain checks by IDC analyst Jitesh Ubrani and Forbes contributor Brooke Crothers, but release timing remains unclear. Crothers is a former contributor to CNET, The New York Times, and The Wall Street Journal in Asia.

16-inch MacBook Pro concept

"We were expecting an announcement in October," Ubrani said in an email, according to Crothers. October came and went without an announcement, but Ubrani added that his research firm is "starting to see early signs" of the notebook within Apple's supply chain. "However, the timing of this is still uncertain," he said.

Crothers said he has heard similar, writing that "a source in Asia who talks to the Apple supply chain told me over the weekend that the 16-inch [MacBook Pro] is in production but the release date is unclear."

This information lines up with a recent DigiTimes report that claimed Apple will begin receiving volume shipments of the 16-inch MacBook Pro this quarter, possibly to sidestep a 15 percent import tariff on notebooks slated to take effect December 15. If accurate, mass production is likely underway.

Rumors suggest the 16-inch MacBook Pro will feature slimmer bezels around the display, a more reliable scissor switch keyboard, a standalone Touch ID sensor, and possibly a much-requested physical Esc key. Pricing is unknown, but would likely be higher than the $2,799 high-end 15-inch MacBook Pro.

Related Roundup: MacBook Pro
Buyer's Guide: MacBook Pro (Caution)
Show Full Article

Kuo: Apple Watch Series 6 Models to Feature Faster Performance and Improved Water Resistance

While the Apple Watch Series 5 lineup was released less than two months ago, rumors are already looking ahead to next year.


In a research note with investor firm TF International Securities, seen by MacRumors, noted Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has predicted that 2020 Apple Watch models will feature faster performance, improved water resistance, and improved wireless transmission for potentially faster Wi-Fi and cellular speeds.

Kuo believes all of these advancements will be made possible by Apple's switch to liquid crystal polymer or LCP material for the flexible circuit boards in next year's Apple Watch models, expected to launch in the second half of the year as usual. Series 5 models and earlier use a material known as polyimide or PI.

Dongshan Precision, Avary Holding, and Flexium Interconnect will be the primary LCP suppliers, according to Kuo.

It would not be surprising if so-called Apple Watch Series 6 models feature a faster Apple-designed S chip, as the only known differences with the S5 chip in Series 5 models compared to the S4 chip in Series 4 models is a built-in compass and a new always-on display driver, so a performance bump will be due next year.

As for water resistance, Apple Watch Series 2 models are already suitable for swimming or showering and can be submerged to a depth of up to 50 meters. With further improvements, perhaps Series 6 models could be certified for some high-velocity water activities such as scuba diving or water skiing.

Previous reports have suggested that 2020 Apple Watch models may also feature sleep tracking and MicroLED displays.

Related Roundups: Apple Watch, watchOS 6
Buyer's Guide: Apple Watch (Buy Now)
Show Full Article

Apple Honors Veterans Day With Website Banner, Activity Challenge on Apple Watch, and More

Today is Veterans Day in the United States and, as usual, Apple CEO Tim Cook has thanked veterans around the world for their service.


Apple is also showing its support for Veterans Day with a short message on its website: "Here's to the brave ones. We're proud to honor America's veterans and service members this Veterans Day and every day."


As noted by Kyle Seth Gray, Apple Watch users can earn a special Veterans Day badge in the Activity app today by completing any workout for 11 minutes or longer. The annual Activity Challenge, limited to the United States, also awards users with a Veterans Day sticker for use in the Messages app.


Last, Apple has highlighted how iPhone app Healium AR is helping veterans manage anxiety. The augmented reality app was created by former TV journalist Sarah Hill, who is profiled in the Apple Newsroom story.

November 11 also marks similar Remembrance Day or Armistice Day commemorations in many other countries.

Show Full Article

Apple Said to Release AR Headset With 3D Scanning in 2022, Followed by Sleeker Glasses in 2023

While noted Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, Bloomberg, and others have claimed that Apple plans to release an augmented reality headset as early as 2020, a new report suggests that the head-mounted device may be a few years away.

Apple currently aims to release an augmented reality headset in 2022, followed by a "sleeker" pair of augmented reality glasses by 2023, according to The Information. The report claims the timeline was shared by Apple executives in an internal presentation to employees at Apple Park in October.

Interestingly, the meeting is said to have been large enough to fill the 1,000-plus seats at Steve Jobs Theater, suggesting that Apple may have a large team working on the project. The report claims the discussions were led by Apple's recently appointed AR/VR head Mike Rockwell, a former Dolby executive.

Google Glasses

The meeting is said to have reflected on some of the headset's planned features, including "3D scanning" and "advanced human detection."

The report claims Apple's headset will resemble Facebook's Oculus Quest virtual reality headset released earlier this year, but with a sleeker design, adding that Apple wants to "make heavy use of fabrics and lightweight materials" to ensure its headset is comfortable to wear for extended periods of time.

The headset is said to feature a high-resolution display and cameras that will allow users to "read small type" and "see other people standing in front of and behind virtual objects." During the meeting, Apple executives allegedly said the technology will be able to map the surfaces, edges, and dimensions of rooms with greater accuracy than existing devices on the market.

"To illustrate these capabilities, attendees at the October meeting were shown a recording of a demonstration in which a virtual coffee machine was placed on a real kitchen table surrounded by people in a room," the report notes. "The virtual coffee machine obscured people standing behind it in the room."

Apple executives said the company plans to reach out to third-party software developers as early as 2021 to encourage them to build apps for the device, so the headset could end up being previewed earlier than 2022.

The headset, allegedly codenamed N301, appears to be only one of Apple's ongoing AR/VR projects. The other is said to be a pair of AR glasses codenamed N421, with current prototypes said to resemble high-priced sunglasses with "thick frames that house the battery and chips." The final design could change.

Related Roundup: Apple Glasses
Show Full Article

Regulators Looking Into Claims of Gender Discrimination in Apple Card Credit Decisions, Goldman Sachs Responds

Goldman Sachs and Apple have become involved in a controversy over credit decisions for Apple Card, amid complaints that those decisions appear in some cases to have been made in a discriminatory manner on the basis of gender, reports The New York Times.


The firestorm kicked off late last week when Ruby on Rails creator David Heinemeier Hansson indicated on Twitter that his ‌Apple Card‌ credit limit was twenty times that offered to his wife, even though the couple has been married for many years, file joint tax returns, and live in a community property state where all income and assets acquired while married are considered jointly owned.

Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak also weighed in, reporting that his ‌Apple Card‌ credit limit was ten times that offered to his wife, with the Wozniaks in a similar financial situation where all assets are jointly owned.

In response, New York State Department of Financial Services Superintendent Linda Lacewell has announced that her office will be looking into the situation, and she offered additional information in a Medium post today.
I responded, announcing that the New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS) would examine whether the algorithm used to make these credit limit decisions violates state laws that prohibit discrimination on the basis of sex. For the rest of the day, numerous Twitter users responded to David’s initial tweet, including Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak (who indicated his credit limit is ten times higher than that of his wife), describing similar instances where men received higher credit limits than women. Confounding this is the “black box” problem, in which consumers have little visibility into how a decision is made or why they have been rejected.

New York law prohibits discrimination against protected classes of individuals, which means an algorithm, as with any other method of determining creditworthiness, cannot result in disparate treatment for individuals based on age, creed, race, color, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, or other protected characteristics.
Goldman Sachs today responded to the controversy, maintaining that "factors like gender" are never used in credit decisions and explaining how members of a family could receive very different credit decisions. The statement did not, however, directly address Hansson's situation, which is understandable given financial privacy issues.
With ‌Apple Card‌, your account is individual to you; your credit line is yours and you establish your own direct credit history. Customers do not share a credit line under the account of a family member or another person by getting a supplemental card.

As with any other individual credit card, your application is evaluated independently. We look at an individual's income and an individual's creditworthiness, which includes factors like personal credit scores, how much debt you have, and how that debt has been managed. Based on these factors, it is possible for two family members to receive significantly different credit decisions.

In all cases, we have not and will not make decisions based on factors like gender.
Goldman Sachs also noted that it is "looking to enable" the ability for users to share Apple Cards with other members of their families, although the company did not specify when that might occur.

Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues 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.

Show Full Article

Mac Pro Spotted in Studio of DJ Calvin Harris Ahead of Launch

Apple's new Mac Pro, still listed on Apple's website as "coming this fall," has been spotted in the wild this weekend at the studio of DJ and producer Calvin Harris.

New ‌Mac Pro‌ spotted in Calvin Harris Instagram video

On Saturday, Harris posted an Instagram story featuring some of his music and offering his followers a peek into his production studio, in which a ‌Mac Pro‌ with signature cheese grater case and carry handles can be seen sat on the floor next to a desk.

The sighting suggests Apple has shared the new high-throughput machine with creative professionals to give them a feel for its power and potential ahead of its public release, which could be any day now.

The all-new ‌‌Mac Pro‌‌ boasts up to 28-core Intel Xeon processors, up to 1.5TB of ECC RAM, up to 4TB of SSD storage, and up to AMD Radeon Pro Vega II Duo graphics with 64GB of HBM2 memory. The computer also has eight PCIe expansion slots for maximum performance, expansion, and configurability.

A new design includes a stainless steel frame with smooth handles and an aluminum housing that lifts off for 360-degree access to the entire system. The housing also has a unique lattice pattern to maximize airflow and quiet operation.


Apple announced the ‌Mac Pro‌ on June 3, and the company has been teasing a fall release on its website ever since, without specifying a launch date. The machine received FCC approval on October 30, suggesting pre-order availability is not far away.

The ‌Mac Pro‌ starts at $5,999, so this machine is only for the most serious professional users. They could also twin it with the $6,000 Pro Display XDR, which is expected to be released at the same time.

Related Roundup: Mac Pro
Buyer's Guide: Mac Pro (Don't Buy)
Show Full Article

Top 14 AirPods Pro Tips and Tricks

Apple in October 2019 debuted the AirPods Pro, a new higher-end version of its existing AirPods with an updated design, noise cancellation technology, a customizable fit with silicone ear tips, and a more expensive $249 price tag.

In this guide, we've collected 14 of our favorite ‌AirPods Pro‌ tips to help you get the most out of Apple's latest and greatest wireless earbuds. Check out our video, keep reading, and you might well discover a new trick or two.

Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos.

1. Take Out Your ‌AirPods Pro‌ the Right Way


Have you found yourself getting frustrated trying to wrestle each AirPod Pro out of the case? Well, we're here to tell you "you're holding it wrong."

AirPods pro
Apple has designed them in such a way that you simply have to push on the back of each earbud and it will swivel right out between your thumb and forefinger.

2. Enable Noise Cancellation for Better Audio


‌AirPods Pro‌ are Apple's first in-ear headphones with Active Noise Cancellation (ANC), which adapts to the shape of your ear and blocks out the outside world so you can focus on what you're listening to.

AirPods Pro
ANC relies on a feature called Ambient EQ, which Apple says adjusts the sound signal 200 times a second to optimize audio for your specific ear shape through the use of an internal-facing microphone.

When you turn off noise cancellation, Ambient EQ is also disabled, meaning sound quality is slightly degraded. So for the best Airpods Pro audio experience, it's better to keep noise cancellation on. By default, pressing and holding either AirPod Pro stem will cycle between Noise Cancellation and Transparency, or you can control the noise functions on your iPhone or iPad.

  1. Open Control Center on your iOS device.
    airpods pro noise control
  2. Press and hold the Control Center volume bar (a pair of earbuds will be visible inside of it to indicate the ‌AirPods Pro‌ are connected.)
  3. Tap Noise Cancellation in the strip at the bottom of the screen.
You can also control Noise Control functions by going to Settings -> Bluetooth and tapping the information icon (the circled "i") next to your ‌AirPods Pro‌. And if you've got your ‌AirPods‌ connected to a Mac running macOS Catalina, you can control it from the volume icon in the menu bar.

3. Tap to Check Wireless Charge Status


‌AirPods Pro‌ come with a wireless charging case, and you can charge it on most Qi-compatible third-party charging mats. The case also includes a neat new function for checking its charging status at any time.

AirPods pro
  1. Place the charging case face up on a charging mat – the light will turn on for a few seconds, then turn off as it starts to charge.
  2. To check the charging status at any time, tap the case with your finger to make the light come on.
  3. Take notice of the light's color: An amber light means it's still charging, and green means it's fully charged.

4. Activate Noise Cancellation on One AirPod


You can use noise cancellation when using only one AirPod Pro, which is useful if you like to take calls using just the one earbud.

settings
  1. Launch the Settings app on your iPhone or ‌iPad‌.
  2. Tap Accessibility -> ‌AirPods‌.
  3. Tap the toggle next to Noise Cancellation on One AirPod.

5. Access Noise Controls via Apple Watch


Most Airpods Pro users will know they can flip between the noise control features or turn them off entirely from iPhone's Control Center. It's less well-known that you can access the same functions on ‌Apple Watch‌, too.

AirPods pro Apple Watch
  1. Make sure your Airpods Pro are connected to your iPhone and audio is playing.
  2. Raise your wrist to wake your ‌Apple Watch‌.
  3. On the Now Playing screen, tap the icon with the triangle and three circles in the lower left corner.
  4. Tap your ‌AirPods Pro‌ in the list.

6. Use ‌AirPods Pro‌ as a Remote Mic


‌AirPods Pro‌ support Apple's Live Listen feature, which uses your iPhone as a microphone and relays what the iPhone picks up to the earbuds, even if the ‌AirPods‌ are in another room.

  1. Open the Settings app on your iPhone.
  2. Select Control Center -> Customize Controls.
  3. Tap the "+" button next to Hearing.
    settings
  4. Launch Control Center by swiping down from the top-right corner of the screen (on iPhone 8 or earlier, swipe up from the bottom of the screen).
  5. Tap the Hearing icon.
  6. Tap Live Listen.
  7. Place your iPhone close to the person(s) you want to hear...
    control center

7. Share Audio Between Two Pairs of ‌AirPods‌


If you're running iOS 13.1 or later, Apple's Audio Sharing feature lets you share your device's Bluetooth audio with a second pair of ‌AirPods‌, so two of you can listen to music together while running, or enjoy a movie on a plane without disturbing those around you.

control center
  1. With your ‌AirPods‌ on, start playing audio on your iPhone or ‌iPad‌.
  2. Launch Control Center by swiping down from the top-right corner of the screen or up from the Home button on devices with a Home button.
  3. In Control Center's audio playback controls, tap the icon with the triangle and three circles.
  4. Bring your friend's ‌AirPods‌ inside their case close to your device and flip the lid open.
  5. You should see a prompt on your device's screen offering to Share Audio with the second pair of ‌AirPods‌.

8. Use One AirPod to Extend Listening Time


‌AirPods Pro‌ offer excellent stereo audio output, but Apple has designed the wireless Bluetooth earphones so that you can also use them one at a time.


  1. Insert one AirPod in your preferred ear and leave the other AirPod in the charging case – the H1 chip will automatically detect which one is in use.
  2. When you hear the low battery tone from the AirPod you're wearing, swap it out with the fully charged one in your Charging Case.
  3. Keep switching between them like this to continue listening for as long as your Charging Case has juice.
Note that when you use just a single left or single right AirPod, stereo signals are automatically converted to mono output, so you won't miss a thing.

9. Adjust Force Sensor Duration


If you're having difficulty engaging the ‌AirPods‌' Force sensor by squeezing it between your fingers, try adjusting the duration to see if it makes it any easier.

settings
  1. Launch the Settings app on your connected device.
  2. Select Accessibility -> ‌AirPods‌.
  3. Under "Press and Hold Duration," select Default, Short or Shorter.

10. Change ‌AirPods‌ Press Speed


The controls on ‌AirPods Pro‌ allow you to press once to play, pause or answer a phone call, press twice to skip forwards, and press three times to skip backwards. Like the press-and-hold gesture, if you're having trouble engaging these functions then you can adjust the press speed to make it slower.

settings
  1. Launch the Settings app on your connected device.
  2. Select Accessibility -> ‌AirPods‌.
  3. Under "Press Speed," select Default, Slow, or Slowest.

11. Find Your Misplaced or Lost ‌AirPods Pro‌


If you lose or misplace your ‌AirPods Pro‌, you can find their last known location in the Find My app.

find my
  1. Open ‌Find My‌ app on your iOS device (or access it in any browser via iCloud.com).
  2. Tap the Devices tab at the bottom of the screen.
  3. Tap your Airpods Pro in the list.
  4. Tap Play Sound if you're fairly sure your AirPod(s) are somewhere within earshot. If you don't know where you lost your AirPod(s), the last place they were connected will be shown on the map – tap Directions to get directions to the last known location.

12. Have ‌AirPods Pro‌ Announce Your Calls


If you receive a call on your iPhone (or an ‌Apple Watch‌ with cellular) when your Airpods Pro are connected, the ringing tone will interrupt whatever it is you're listening to.

To find out who's calling, normally you'd have to take out your iPhone or look at your ‌Apple Watch‌, but you can have Siri announce who it is over your ‌AirPods‌, saving you the trouble.

  1. On your iPhone, launch the Settings app.
  2. Tap Phone in the list.
    settings
  3. Tap Announce Calls under the Calls heading.
  4. Tap Headphones Only so that a tick appears alongside the option.

13. Check ‌AirPods‌ Battery Life


You can check the charge status of your ‌AirPods‌ using the Batteries widget in your iPhone's Today View, but when you're wearing your ‌AirPods‌, just ask ‌Siri‌ "How is my ‌AirPods‌' battery?" and you'll get an individual percentage level for each earbud. If you just opened your charging case, you'll get a percentage for that too.


You can also check the battery level of your ‌AirPods‌ from ‌Apple Watch‌, whether they're paired with your iPhone or directly with your watch. To do so, swipe up on a watch face or when in an app to bring up Control Center, then tap the ‌Apple Watch‌ battery icon, indicated by a percentage.

apple watch
Your ‌AirPods‌' battery level will be displayed as a ring below the ‌Apple Watch‌ battery percentage, and if you place an AirPod in its charging case, you'll see individual percentage charges for the lot.

14. Reset Your ‌AirPods Pro‌


If your ‌AirPods‌ aren't working as they should be – if you can't connect to them or if they won't charge, for example – you can reset them by following these steps.

  1. Put your ‌AirPods‌ in their case and close the lid.
  2. Wait 30 seconds, then open the lid.
  3. On your iOS device, go to Settings -> Bluetooth and tap the circled "i" icon next to your ‌AirPods‌.
    settings
  4. Tap Forget This Device, and tap again to confirm.
  5. With the ‌AirPods‌ case lid open, press and hold the button on the back of the case for about 15 seconds until you see the status light flashing amber.
    AirPods pro
  6. With the case lid open, place your ‌AirPods‌ close to your device and follow the steps on your device's screen to reconnect your ‌AirPods‌.
Got any more ‌AirPods‌ tips or tricks we've not covered here? Let us know in the comments below.

Related Roundup: AirPods Pro
Buyer's Guide: AirPods Pro (Buy Now)
Show Full Article

Apple to Fix macOS Mail Vulnerability That Leaves Text of Some Encrypted Emails Readable

There's a vulnerability in the macOS version of the Apple Mail app that leaves some of the text of encrypted emails unencrypted, according to a report from IT specialist Bob Gendler (via The Verge).

According to Gendler, the snippets.db database file used by a macOS function that offers up contact suggestions stores encrypted emails in an unencrypted format, even when Siri is disabled on the Mac.

In this email, Gendler demonstrates that the private key has been made unavailable in Mail, rendering the message unreadable. It continues to be available in the database, though.

Gendler initially discovered the bug on July 29 and reported it to Apple. Over the course of several months, Apple said that it was looking into the issue, though no fix ever came. The vulnerability continues to exist in macOS Catalina and earlier versions of macOS dating back to macOS Sierra.
Let me say that again... The snippets.db database is storing encrypted Apple Mail messages...completely, totally, fully -- UNENCRYPTED -- readable, even with ‌Siri‌ disabled, without requiring the private key. Most would assume that disabling ‌Siri‌ would stop macOS from collecting information on the user. This is a big deal.

This is a big deal for governments, corporations and regular people who use encrypted email and expect the contents to be protected. Secret or top-secret information, which was sent encrypted, would be exposed via this process and database, as would trade secrets and proprietary data.
Apple told The Verge that it has been made aware of the issue and will address it in a future software update. Apple also said that only portions of some emails are stored, and provided Gendler with instructions on preventing data from being stored by the snippets database.

This issue affects a limited number of people in practice, and is not something that macOS users should generally worry about. It requires customers to be using macOS and the Apple Mail app to send encrypted emails. It does not impact those who have FileVault turned on, and a person who wanted to access the information would also need to know where in Apple's system files to look and have physical access to a machine.

Still, as Gendler points out, this particular vulnerability "brings up the question of what else is tracked and potentially improperly stored without you realizing it."

Those concerned about this issue can prevent data from being collected in the snippets.db database by opening up System Preferences, choosing the ‌Siri‌ section, selecting ‌Siri‌ Suggestions & Privacy, choosing Mail and then turning off "Learn from this App." This will stop new emails from being added to snippets.db but won't remove those that have already been included.

Apple told The Verge that customers who want to avoid unencrypted snippets being read by other apps can avoid giving apps full disk access in ‌macOS Catalina‌. Turning on FileVault will also encrypt everything on the Mac.

Full details on the vulnerability can be read in Gendler's Medium article.

Tag: Mail
Show Full Article

Adam Scott Cast as Lead in Upcoming Apple TV+ Thriller 'Severance'

Actor Adam Scott has been cast as the lead in Apple's latest project for Apple TV+, called "Severance" (via The Hollywood Reporter). The show is described as a workplace thriller set at a company "looking to take work-life balance to a new level."

Image via Wikimedia Commons

"Severance" is being produced by Ben Stiller, and was created by Dan Erickson. The show comes from Endeavor Content, which also produces ‌Apple TV‌+ shows like "See" and the upcoming "Truth Be Told."

Apple has yet to announce a launch date for "Severance," but it has been ordered straight-to-series with a 10-episode first season. Recently, all of the major launch shows for ‌Apple TV‌+ received second season orders from the company.

Head to the MacRumors Apple TV+ forum to join in discussions for all of the new shows that have launched, and will soon launch, on Apple's streaming service.

Show Full Article