Joe Rossignol

Joe joined MacRumors as an Editor in January 2015, based out of Toronto, Canada. He has been writing about Apple since 2008, with bylines at 9to5Mac, 9to5Google, and many other tech-focused publications.

Joe has been cited by major media outlets, including Bloomberg News, CBS, CNBC, CNN, NBC, Reuters, TechCrunch, and The Washington Post. Many of his headlines have been featured by tech news aggregator Techmeme.



Dell Introduces World's First 49-Inch Curved Ultra-Wide Monitor With 5120x1440 Resolution

Dell today introduced what it claims is the world's first 49-inch curved monitor with an ultra-wide 32:9 aspect ratio and a resolution of 5,120×1,440 pixels. The UltraSharp 49 is equivalent to two Thunderbolt Displays or other 27-inch Quad HD displays side by side. The expansive screen space can be used to display one desktop, or two with a picture-by-picture mode that displays two different Mac or PC sources side by side using the same keyboard and mouse. The monitor is compatible with the latest 13-inch and 15-inch MacBook Pro models, with connectivity via a single USB-C cable that delivers up to 90W of power. Other connectivity options include two HDMI 2.0 ports, one DisplayPort 1.4 port, five USB 3.0 downstream ports, and two USB 3.0 upstream ports. The 3800R curvature of the screen enables a panoramic, immersive experience with a consistent focal length across the screen for eye comfort, according to Dell. The monitor has a viewing angle of 178° both vertically and horizontally. The monitor has an IPS panel and LED backlight, with a 1000:1 contrast ratio and a peak brightness of 350 nits. DCI P3 isn't supported, but it does show 99 percent of the sRGB color gamut. The monitor comes with a height-adjustable stand that tilts, swivels, and is compatible with VESA mounts. The UltraSharp 49 has a 60Hz refresh rate when driven by a Mac or PC with powerful enough graphics, but it lacks Nvidia G-SYNC or AMD FreeSync technology, so it isn't the best option for gamers. Instead, Dell is primarily marketing the monitor to those who work in fields related to

Kuo: 2019 iPhones to Have Same Water Resistance as iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max

While the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max became available to order less than a month ago, the rumor mill is already looking ahead to next year. In a research note to investors, shared by the Taiwanese publication Economic Daily News, Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said 2019 iPhones will have the same IP68-rated water resistance as the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max. Both devices are water resistant up to a depth of two meters for up to 30 minutes. Kuo said that "the new iPhone waterproof specifications will remain unchanged next year," according to a translated version of the report. IP codes refer to the degree of protection an iPhone has against dust and liquid. The "6" means the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max are dustproof, while the "8" represents the highest level of liquid resistance. IP68 is effectively the highest rating iPhones can achieve under the IP code standard, but there is no limit on conditions like water depth and pressure. 2019 iPhones could have had IP68-rated water resistance up to three meters, for example, but that will not be the case according to Kuo. This isn't really bad news, as YouTubers have subjected the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max to a variety of extreme underwater tests, and the devices have generally remained functional. That doesn't mean you should go swimming with your bare iPhone, however, as liquid damage is only covered with AppleCare+. All in all, this is a relatively minor data point about 2019 iPhones, but one to add to the list as we continue to learn about next year's

Axios: Apple Has Acquired Asaii, a Music Analytics Platform 'Able to Find the Next Justin Bieber' [Update: No]

Apple has acquired San Francisco-based music analytics startup Asaii, according to unnamed sources cited by Axios. The deal, which has not been confirmed by Apple, was reportedly worth less than $100 million. Asaii built tools that allowed music labels to discover, track, and manage artists using machine learning. The platform pulled data from social networks and streaming music services, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Apple Music, Spotify, YouTube, and SoundCloud, to find hidden talent. Asaii offered two products specifically: a music management dashboard for A&R representatives to quickly scout and manage talent, and an API for music services to integrate a recommendation engine into their platforms. "Our machine learning powered algorithms finds artists 10 weeks before they chart," the startup's website states. "Our algorithms are able to find the next Justin Bieber, before anyone else," another page claimed. The acquisition will enable Apple to bolster its content recommendations to users, and help it compete with Spotify's efforts to work directly with smaller artists and music labels, according to the report. Apple Music and iTunes are likely to benefit from Asaii's machine learning algorithms. Asaii was founded in August 2016 by Sony Theakanath, Austin Chen, and Chris Zhang, who have collectively worked at Apple, Facebook, Uber, Salesforce, and Yelp previously. All three individuals now work on the Apple Music team at Apple, as of October 2018, according to their LinkedIn profiles. In an email to customers shared by Music Ally last

New iPad Pro Models Spotted in Analytics With Same Resolutions as Current 10.5-Inch and 12.9-Inch Models

Apple is widely expected to introduce new iPad Pro models with Face ID at a media event later this month, and we can now confirm that Apple has been testing those models internally over the past few months. iPad Pro with edge-to-edge display render via iDropNews Mobile app analytics platform Appsee has informed MacRumors that model identifiers iPad8,1; iPad 8,2; iPad8,3; iPad 8,4; iPad 8,5; and iPad 8,8 began to appear in its device logs starting August 1. Earlier this week, 9to5Mac's Guilherme Rambo claimed those identifiers represent unreleased 2018 iPad Pro models. "The model codes for the Wi-Fi models of the 2018 iPad Pro will be iPad8,1, iPad8,2, iPad8,5 and iPad8,6," said Rambo. "Meanwhile, the cellular-capable models will be iPad8,3, iPad8,4 and iPad8,7 and iPad8,8." For what it's worth, Appsee has yet to see any iPad8,6 or iPad8,7 sessions appear in its analytics, but those models very likely exist. What's more interesting is that the new iPad Pro models appear to have the same display resolutions as the latest 10.5-inch and 12.9-inch models. Appsee's logs indicate that the iPad8,1 through iPad8,4 models have a resolution of 1,112×834 points, while the iPad8,5 and iPad8,8 measure in at 1,366×1,024 points. Point resolution is not pixel resolution, but we can easily find out the latter. iPad Pro displays use Apple's high-resolution @2x modifier, meaning there are four pixels for every point. As such, simple math reveals that the new iPad Pro models in the logs have resolutions of 2,224×1,668 and 2,732×2,048 pixels, identical to that of the current

Stockholm's New City Council Opposes Planned Apple Store at Kungsträdgården

Stockholm's newly elected city council has promised that plans will not proceed for a flagship Apple Store bordering Kungsträdgården, a public park in the city center, according to Swedish newspaper Dagens Nyheter. A render of Apple Kungsträdgården by Foster + Partners While the previous city council had approved the plans, the proposed store received some pushback from local residents, as the Kungsträdgården is a popular gathering space with concerts, events, and other activities. The new city council assured those residents that the store will not be built at a press conference today. Earlier this year, Stockholm residents were invited to share their opinions about the proposed store during a consultation period, according to The Local. Swedish blog Teknikveckan's Peter Esse told MacRumors the city received nearly 1,800 comments about the plans, many containing negative feedback. According to The Local, critics said the store would block the entrance to the north side of the park and change the environment from an open-air space for public use to a commercialized one. A TGI Fridays restaurant is already located on the spot, but the Apple Store was expected to be larger. Apple had planned to host its own events and performances in the park, as part of its goal of having its stores double as "town squares." Apple retail chief Angela Ahrendts confirmed the company's plans to open a store in Stockholm in February 2016, in a statement provided to Swedish newspaper Expressen. That report said Apple hoped to open the store within two years, but construction

Kaspersky Lab Says Report Claiming China Hacked Apple's Former Server Supplier is Likely 'Untrue'

Russia-based cybersecurity company Kaspersky Lab today said that while "hardware supply chain attacks are a reality," evidence suggests Bloomberg Businessweek's report about Chinese intelligence tampering with server motherboards manufactured by Apple's former supplier Supermicro is "untrue." Apple data center Kaspersky Lab said the report "should be taken with a grain of salt" in its 14-page analysis of the alleged attack, obtained by MacRumors:The stories published by Bloomberg in October 2018 had a significant impact. For Supermicro, it meant a 40% stock valuation loss. For businesses owning Supermicro hardware, this can be translated into a lot of frustration, wasted time, and resources. Considering the strong denials from Apple and Amazon, the history of inaccurate articles published by Bloomberg, including but not limited to the usage of Heartbleed by U.S. intelligence prior to the public disclosure, as well as other facts from these stories, we believe they should be taken with a grain of salt.Kaspersky Lab added that the language in both Apple and Amazon statements denying the Bloomberg Businessweek report are "pretty strong" and "leaves little to no chance of retractions or denials at a later time." The firm added that the statements are regulated by the SEC in the United States. The key part of Apple's statement was as follows:On this we can be very clear: Apple has never found malicious chips, "hardware manipulations" or vulnerabilities purposely planted in any server. Apple never had any contact with the FBI or any other agency about such an incident. We

Apple Expands Its Elk Grove Campus in California

Apple is expanding its Elk Grove, California campus with an additional office building, according to the Sacramento Business Journal. Apple's new office space via Elk Grove Economic Development Apple paid $4.2 million for a one-story, 24,400-square-foot building at 2216 Kausen Drive, one block from the campus, according to property records reviewed by the publication. A spokesperson for Apple confirmed the building is part of the ongoing expansion and development of its Elk Grove operations. The report, citing a city official, says the building is zoned for office use, suggesting that it could be used as additional space for AppleCare support representatives. Apple also has a large distribution center in Elk Grove, along with a repair and refurbishment facility for iPhones and other products. Apple has been expanding its Elk Grove campus since 2011, and now has over 5,000 employees working there, the report claims. Apple has had a presence in the city, just south of Sacramento, since the early 1990s. Beyond its headquarters in Cupertino, California, Apple also has a campus in Austin, Texas that handles AppleCare

Discover Cashback Debit Cards Now Work With Apple Pay

Discover today announced that its Cashback Debit card can now be used with Apple Pay. Discover Cashback Debit cards are issued to customers with a Discover online checking account. Cardholders will continue to receive 1% cashback on up to $3,000 in qualifying debit card purchases each month when paying with Apple Pay. To use the card with Apple Pay, simply open the Wallet app on a compatible iPhone and tap on the plus symbol in the top-right corner. Then, position the card within the camera viewfinder, or tap on Enter Card Details Manually. Discover credit cards have worked with Apple Pay since September 2015, with support for redeeming cashback bonuses added last year. In related news, pharmacy chain CVS has completed its rollout of Apple Pay in the United States. Wholesale retailer Costco and convenience store chain 7-Eleven also recently began accepting Apple Pay in the United

Kuo: Apple Has Opportunity With iPhone XR in China as Chinese Rivals Face 'Lower Than Expected' Demand

In a research note obtained by MacRumors, Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said cumulative smartphone shipments from four major brands on the Chinese market, including Huawei, Oppo, Vivo, and Xiaomi, declined 10 percent on a year-over-year basis during China's Golden Week, a national holiday and major sales period. iPhone XR in (PRODUCT)RED Kuo, writing on behalf of research firm TF International Securities, said the estimated 6.5-7 million shipments during Golden Week were "lower than expected." He called Huawei the "major winner" as the only brand with a year-over-year increase in shipments during the October 1-7 holiday. The well-known analyst attributed the year-over-year decline to a lack of innovative selling points among Chinese-brand smartphones. Kuo is positive on the trends of triple-lens cameras and fingerprint sensors under the display in smartphones, but said only limited models currently support both functions. Kuo also cautioned that the US-China trade war "may be affecting consumer confidence, which makes the replacement cycle longer." A third reason is that some consumers—particularly existing iPhone owners—will opt for more affordable legacy iPhone models or wait for the iPhone XR, according to Kuo, who expects replacement demands for the iPhone XR in China will be better than last year's demand for the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus. Extrapolating from Golden Week, Kuo said smartphone shipments in China in 2018 as a whole may be "lower than expected." He estimates shipments may decline 10-15 percent to 410 million units on a year-over-year

NSA Senior Advisor Latest to Question Report Claiming China Hacked Apple's Former Server Supplier

Rob Joyce, Senior Advisor for Cybersecurity Strategy at the NSA, is the latest official to question the accuracy of Bloomberg Businessweek's bombshell "The Big Hack" report about Chinese spies compromising the U.S. tech supply chain. "I have pretty good understanding about what we're worried about and what we're working on from my position. I don't see it," said Joyce, speaking at a U.S. Chamber of Commerce cyber summit in Washington, D.C. today, according to a subscriber-only Politico report viewed by MacRumors. "I've got all sorts of commercial industry freaking out and just losing their minds about this concern, and nobody's found anything," Joyce added. Joyce, a former White House cybersecurity coordinator, noted that all of the companies named in the Bloomberg Businessweek report have issued strong denials, including Apple, Amazon, and Supermicro. He said those companies would "suffer a world of hurt" if regulators later determine that they lied. Apple's statement read in part:On this we can be very clear: Apple has never found malicious chips, "hardware manipulations" or vulnerabilities purposely planted in any server. Apple never had any contact with the FBI or any other agency about such an incident. We are not aware of any investigation by the FBI, nor are our contacts in law enforcement.Bloomberg Businessweek, citing 17 unnamed sources, claimed that Chinese spies planted tiny chips the size of a pencil tip on server motherboards manufactured by Supermicro at its Chinese factories. The servers were then sold to companies such as Apple and Amazon for

Apple Has Acquired Danish Startup Spektral, Focused on Real-Time 'Green Screen' Technology

Apple has acquired Danish computer vision startup Spektral, according to a paywalled report from Danish newspaper Børsen. Spektral has developed a technology that can intelligently separate people and objects from their original backgrounds in photos and videos, and overlay a new background, resulting in what is called a "cutout." The solution is driven by deep neural networks and spectral graph theory. The technology can be thought of as real-time "green screen" processing powered by machine learning algorithms:Our pioneering and unique technology is based on state-of-the-art machine learning and computer vision techniques. Combining deep neural networks and spectral graph theory with the computing power of modern GPUs, our engine can process images and video from the camera in real-time (60 FPS) directly on the device.The report says Apple acquired Spektral, formerly known as CloudCutout, in late 2017. Spektral co-founders Henrik Paltoft and Toke Jansen, who now lists himself as a manager of computational imaging at Apple, are said to have received 200 million Danish krone, or roughly $30 million as of today's exchange rate. Spektral's website notes that its solution makes it possible to create unique and immersive mixed reality content. Apple could incorporate the technology into the default Camera app on iPhone, or Messages, or Clips, or use the technology in bigger ways as it continues to push into augmented reality. Spektral was founded in 2014 and raised $3.3 million in venture capital prior to its acquisition by Apple, according to Crunchbase

Apple Said to Have 'Dramatically Reduced' Multi-Billion-Dollar iPhone Repair Fraud in China

Within the past four years, Apple has managed to "dramatically reduce" the rate of iPhone-related repair fraud in its retail stores in China, according to The Information's Wayne Ma. The report is based on interviews with more than a dozen former Apple employees who spoke on condition of anonymity. Image: iFixit In 2013, Apple is said to have discovered a highly sophisticated fraud scheme in which organized thieves would buy or steal iPhones, remove valuable components like the processor or logic board, swap in fake components, and return the "broken" iPhones to receive replacements they could resell.Thieves would stand outside stores with suitcases full of iPhones with some of the original components stripped out and replaced with inferior parts, two of the people said. The fraudsters would hire people to pretend to be customers to return them, each taking a device to stand in line at the Genius Bar, the people said. Once the phones were swapped, the actors would pass the new phones to the fraudsters and get paid for their time, the people said."In the old-school world, this would be a car chop shop, where you would take all the pieces off and sell them," said Kyle Wiens, co-founder and CEO of iFixit. "Now they're doing that with iPhones." The report claims most of the schemes originated in Shenzhen, a southern Chinese city known as a hotbed for criminal organizations because of its proximity to gangs in nearby Hong Kong. Shenzhen is also the largest electronics manufacturing base in the world, home to many Apple suppliers like Foxconn. When the first Apple

Apple Pencil 2 With AirPods-Like Pairing Expected to Launch Alongside iPad Pro With Face ID

A new version of the Apple Pencil with an AirPods-like pairing process will be released for the rumored iPad Pro with Face ID, expected to be announced later this month, according to 9to5Mac's Guilherme Rambo:The new Apple Pencil will be paired with iPad Pro by proximity, much like AirPods or HomePod. Switching between devices will be possible without connecting the Apple Pencil to the charging port. It's unclear whether the current model of Apple Pencil will work with the new iPad.It's unclear if the new Apple Pencil will be compatible with previous iPad Pro models or the sixth-generation iPad. iPad Pro with edge-to-edge display mockup via iDropNews Bloomberg's Mark Gurman said Apple was working on a new Apple Pencil and new software tools for using the stylus back in November 2017, but few details have surfaced until now, beyond a patent filing for a more precise version of the drawing tool that would incorporate ultrasonic technology. The current Apple Pencil launched alongside the original iPad Pro in November 2015, and hasn't been refreshed since. The $99 drawing tool gained support for the sixth-generation 9.7-inch iPad earlier this year. Rambo said the new iPad Pro will have an edge-to-edge display without a home button, as rumored several times. Unlike the iPhone X, he said the new iPad Pro will not have a notch, as the bezels are said to be wide enough to accommodate the TrueDepth camera and sensor array necessary for Face ID. Face ID on the new iPad Pro will work in both portrait and landscape orientations, according to the report. Rambo also

How to Force Restart or Hard Reset the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus

Apple in 2017 changed the method to force restart or hard reset an iPhone 8 or iPhone 8 Plus. While rebooting an iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus requires pressing and holding both the Sleep/Wake and Volume Down buttons for at least 10 seconds until the Apple logo appears, restarting an iPhone 8 or iPhone 8 Plus is a three step process that involves the Volume Up button, the Volume Down button, and the Side button on the device. How to Force Restart or Hard Reset the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus Press and quickly release the Volume Up button. Press and quickly release the Volume Down button. Press and hold the Side button (aka power) until you see the Apple logo.Powering off regularly still requires holding down the Side button for a few seconds until the "slide to power off" prompt appears. In iOS 11 and iOS 12, there's also a "Shut Down" option in the Settings app at the bottom of the General menu. Apple made this change because on iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus, pressing and holding the Side aka Sleep/Wake button and one of the Volume buttons now activates the Emergency SOS feature. Force restarting an iPhone is different than recovery using DFU mode, for which the steps remain the same as the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7

Department of Homeland Security Has 'No Reason to Doubt' Apple's Denial of Supply Chain Compromise

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security today said it has "no reason to doubt" the companies who denied a bombshell Bloomberg Businessweek report this week about Chinese spies using a tiny chip to infiltrate U.S. companies. Homeland Security's full statement:The Department of Homeland Security is aware of the media reports of a technology supply chain compromise. Like our partners in the UK, the National Cyber Security Centre, at this time we have no reason to doubt the statements from the companies named in the story. Information and communications technology supply chain security is core to DHS's cybersecurity mission and we are committed to the security and integrity of the technology on which Americans and others around the world increasingly rely. Just this month – National Cybersecurity Awareness Month – we launched several government-industry initiatives to develop near- and long-term solutions to manage risk posed by the complex challenges of increasingly global supply chains. These initiatives will build on existing partnerships with a wide range of technology companies to strengthen our nation's collective cybersecurity and risk management efforts.Apple, Amazon, and Supermicro have all strongly refuted the report, which alleged that Chinese intelligence planted microchips in Supermicro servers, which Apple and Amazon previously used in their data centers. Apple and Bloomberg Businessweek are in a stalemate, with the former strongly refuting the report, and the latter standing by its reporting. Apple's denial has been backed by not only the Department

iFixit Indicates Third-Party 2018 MacBook Pro, iMac Pro Repairs Still Possible For Now

Earlier this week, MacRumors obtained an internal document from Apple stating that Macs with the Apple T2 chip, including the iMac Pro and 2018 MacBook Pro, must pass Apple diagnostics for certain repairs to be completed. The document states:For Macs with the Apple T2 chip, the repair process is not complete for certain parts replacements until the AST 2 System Configuration suite has been run. Failure to perform this step will result in an inoperative system and an incomplete repair. • For notebooks: Display assembly, logic board, top case, and Touch ID board • For desktops: Logic board and flash storageApple's diagnostic software is limited to internal use by Genius Bars at Apple Stores, Apple Authorized Service Providers, and qualifying institutions, suggesting that independent repair shops without Apple certification would be unable to repair certain parts on the iMac Pro and 2018 MacBook Pro going forward. Moreover, the document reignited a debate about planned obsolescence, as there were concerns that when Apple stops servicing the iMac Pro and 2018 MacBook Pro, repairs through alternative channels might not be possible. The news was quickly opposed by "Right to Repair" activists who believe that Apple and other device manufacturers should be legally required to make replacement parts, repair guides, and tools available to the public. Apple has and continues to actively oppose "Right to Repair" legislation in the United States. Those activists will be delighted to hear that, for whatever reason, what Apple said in its document isn't actually the

How to Electronically Sign a PDF Using Preview on Mac

When you receive a PDF document by email that you must sign, the process of printing out the file, signing on the dotted line with a pen, scanning the signed document and sending it back can be a rather tedious task. Fortunately, Apple has added the ability to electronically sign a PDF document using Preview, a program that comes preinstalled on every Mac running OS X Lion or later. The steps involved to electronically sign a PDF using Preview on Mac are quite simple and will save you valuable time, especially if you have multiple documents, contracts, forms or other paperwork to sign. If you are worried that your virtual signature will look bad, rest assured that you can create your signature by using the trackpad or holding up your signature on paper to a Mac's built-in iSight

Apple's Former Legal Chief Bruce Sewell Says FBI 'Never Heard' of Supermicro Allegations Last Year

Apple's efforts to thoroughly deny this week's bombshell Bloomberg Businessweek report now extend to a former top executive. Apple's former general counsel Bruce Sewell Apple's recently retired general counsel Bruce Sewell told Reuters he called the FBI's then-general counsel James Baker last year after being told by Bloomberg of an open investigation into Supermicro, and was told that nobody at the federal law enforcement agency knew what the story was about. "I got on the phone with him personally and said, 'Do you know anything about this?," Sewell said of his conversation with Baker, reports Reuters. "He said, 'I've never heard of this, but give me 24 hours to make sure.' He called me back 24 hours later and said 'Nobody here knows what this story is about.'" Sewell's comments are consistent with a statement Apple shared with Bloomberg Businessweek and on its Newsroom on Thursday:On this we can be very clear: Apple has never found malicious chips, "hardware manipulations" or vulnerabilities purposely planted in any server. Apple never had any contact with the FBI or any other agency about such an incident. We are not aware of any investigation by the FBI, nor are our contacts in law enforcement.Also from Apple's Newsroom:No one from Apple ever reached out to the FBI about anything like this, and we have never heard from the FBI about an investigation of this kind — much less tried to restrict it.Apple later clarified that it is not under any kind of gag order or other confidentiality obligations after speculation mounted. Amazon and Supermicro have also

Apple Pay is 'Coming Soon' in Saudi Arabia

Apple today announced that Apple Pay is "coming soon" in Saudi Arabia, without providing a more specific timeframe. The Saudi Payments Network (MADA), a major payment system in Saudi Arabia, also confirmed that it will soon introduce support for Apple Pay. #Saudi Payment Network (MADA) announces it will soon Introduce #apple pay in #SaudiArabia 🇸🇦 Visit us at https://t.co/eE9VdOyjxb pic.twitter.com/KjpQYmWq7u— People Of Saudi Arabia (@pplofKSA) October 5, 2018 Saudi Arabia would become at least the 30th region where Apple Pay is officially available. Apple Pay is also set to launch in Germany later this year, as Apple CEO Tim Cook confirmed on the company's earnings call in late July. Apple Pay first launched in the United States in October 2014, and has since expanded to many other countries, such as the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, China, Singapore, Switzerland, France, Japan, Spain, Italy, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Russia, New Zealand, Brazil, Poland, Ireland, and Ukraine. (Thanks, Abdullah and Ahmad!)

UK's Cyber Security Agency Supports Apple's Denial That Chinese Spies Infiltrated iCloud Servers

The United Kingdom's National Cyber Security Centre has backed Apple's and Amazon's denials of a Bloomberg Businessweek report that claimed Chinese spies planted tiny chips the size of a pencil tip on motherboards manufactured by Supermicro, which both Apple and Amazon used at one time in data center servers. "We are aware of the media reports but at this stage have no reason to doubt the detailed assessments made by AWS and Apple," the agency, a unit of the GCHQ, said in a statement provided to Reuters today. "The NCSC engages confidentially with security researchers and urges anybody with credible intelligence about these reports to contact us," it added. Apple was a Supermicro customer for several years, using its servers to power the likes of iCloud, Siri, and the App Store, although it severed ties with the company in 2016 due to a previously-reported and allegedly unrelated incident in which Apple discovered an infected driver on a single server in one of its labs. Bloomberg Businessweek yesterday reported that Apple discovered the suspicious microchips around May 2015, after detecting odd network activity and firmware problems. Two senior Apple insiders were cited as saying the company reported the incident to the FBI, but kept details tightly held. The insiders cited in the report said in the summer of 2015, a few weeks after Apple identified the malicious chips, the company started removing all Supermicro servers from its data centers. Every one of the 7,000 or so Supermicro servers was replaced in a matter of weeks, according to one of the