Juli Clover

Juli is a Senior Editor at MacRumors, photographer, voracious reader, cinephile, gamer, plant eater, and cat parent. She can be reached at juli@macrumors.com or on Twitter.



Apple's Phil Schiller Explains Why Valve's Steam Link App Was Rejected

Apple recently made the decision to reject Valve's Steam Link app after initially approving it, leading to many unhappy Steam customers who had been looking forward to the feature. Apple has been silent on the issue despite several requests for comment, but today, Apple marketing chief Phil Schiller explained the reason behind the rejection to a MacStories reader and other Apple customers on Reddit who emailed to ask Apple to reconsider. In the email, Schiller says the Valve app violates a number of guidelines and that Apple is working with the Valve team to rectify the issue.We care deeply about bringing great games to all of our users on the App Store. We would love for Valve's games and services to be on iOS and AppleTV. Unfortunately, the review team found that Valve's Steam iOS app, as currently submitted, violates a number of guidelines around user generated content, in-app purchases, content codes, etc. We've discussed these issues with Valve and will continue to work with them to help bring the Steam experience to iOS and AppleTV in a way that complies with the store's guidelines. We put great effort into creating an App Store that provides the very best experience for everyone. We have clear guidelines that all developers must follow in order to ensure the App Store is a safe place for all users and a fair opportunity for all developers.The Steam Link app is designed to allow Steam users to play their Steam games on an iPhone, iPad, or Apple TV using either a 5GHz WiFi network or a wired Ethernet connection to a host PC or Mac. As our sister site TouchAr

watchOS 5 Wishlist: Features MacRumors Readers Want to See Introduced in the Next Apple Watch Software Update

The Worldwide Developers Conference is just about a week and a half away, and while we've heard some rumors on what we might see in iOS 12 and macOS 10.14, watchOS 5, the next-generation software update for the Apple Watch, remains a total mystery. With no idea what to expect, we asked MacRumors readers what new features and tweaks they would most like to see in the watchOS 5 update. Live step count complication - MacRumors reader Breezygirl would like to see Apple add a live step complication that lets you see how many steps you've completed at a glance, rather than just a complication that lets you know how close you've come to hitting your activity ring goal. Third-party watch faces - Third-party watch faces are highly desired by most Apple Watch owners on the forums, but so far, Apple has kept the Apple Watch locked down to control the design and interface of the device. As MacRumors reader Relentless Power suggests, a watch face store that includes a variety of watch faces from third-party developers and companies would be great. Activity app improvements - Right now, the Activity app requires you to hit your goals each and every day to keep a streak going, which can be difficult at times and allows for no rest. MacRumors reader SoYoung would like to be able to set rest days. Workout app improvements - In the same vein, MacRumors reader Rbart is hoping for a better workout app for running that's closer in design to Strava with additional statistics, a complete history, best performances, and more. Honglong1976, meanwhile, would like to see

Apple Shares Latest Transparency Report Outlining Government Data Requests From July 1 to December 31, 2017

Apple today released its latest transparency report outlining government data requests for the second half of 2017, covering the dates between July 1 and December 31 [PDF]. Apple's transparency reports are designed to provide customers with information on how many data-related requests it has received from law enforcement officials both in the United States and globally. In the United States, Apple received 4,450 requests for 15,168 devices and provided data 80 percent of the time (in 3,548 cases). Worldwide, Apple received a total of 29,718 requests covering 309,362 devices and provided data 79 percent of the time (in 23,445 cases). Apple received a similar number of requests in the United States and worldwide from July to December 2016, but the number of devices included in the total number of requests has doubled. Last year, Apple received 30,184 total requests covering 151,105 devices and complied with 72 percent of those requests. Data requests cover a wide range of circumstances, from instances where law enforcement agencies are working on behalf of customers who have asked for help locating lost or stolen devices to issues with credit card fraud to criminal investigations. In the United States, requests Apple receives can include subpoenas, court orders, search warrants, pen register/trap and trace orders, or wiretap orders. While Apple attempts to be as transparent as possible in these reports, the government does not allow the company to release specific details on the number of National Security requests received, instead requiring a number

Apple Store in Atlantic City, New Jersey Shutting Down

Apple is closing its Apple Store located in Atlantic City, New Jersey, which will affect 52 employees who currently work at the store and will need to be relocated, reports Bloomberg. Apple has filed a Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification with the state of New Jersey signaling its intention to shutter the store. It's not clear exactly when the store will be closed, as the store's website does not yet list a closing date and Today at Apple sessions continue to be available. It is rare for Apple to shutter stores completely, and in a statement, an Apple spokesperson told Bloomberg that the closure was due to a "sharp decline in tourism." "We have made the difficult decision not to extend our lease," said the spokesperson. Apple says that all of the store's employees will be offered other jobs within Apple. "We look forward to serving our Greater Atlantic City customers through our southern New Jersey, Delaware Valley, and Greater Philadelphia area stores," read Apple's statement. The last store that Apple closed was located in Simi Valley, California, which Apple shut down in September 2017 due to low sales and issues with customer traffic. Update: Apple's store page for the Atlantic City location now notes that June 30 will be the final day of

Recent Trademark Filings Hint at Possible Names for macOS 10.14 - Mojave, Sequoia, Ventura or Sonoma

A series of trademark applications Apple filed in Cambodia and the Philippines may point towards the name we can expect to see used for macOS 10.14, the next-generation version of macOS that Apple will unveil at the Worldwide Developers Conference in June. In the two countries, using a presumed shell company, Apple has filed several new trademarks on a series of California landmark names that originally surfaced in 2014. In the Philippines, Apple has filed trademark applications for Mojave, Sequoia, Sonoma, and Ventura, while in Cambodia, Apple has filed a trademark for Mojave alone. It is not clear why Apple is filing new trademarks for these names in these specific countries, but these new filings suggest one of these four names could be used for macOS 10.14. Given that Mojave is the name that was filed in both locations, it could be Apple's frontrunner. Other California landmark names that were trademarked alongside these back in 2014 have not seen any new trademark filings by Apple, with trademarking activity limited to Mojave, Sequoia, Sonoma, and Ventura. The Ipanah Valley in the Mojave Desert, via the National Park Service With trademark filings, Apple is required to continually file extensions to hold on to a name because trademarks must be used. Apple has kept several of the names from its original 2014 filing active, including Rincon, Grizzly, Farallon, and Monterey. All of these names could also be used for future versions of macOS. Mojave, Sequoia, Sonoma, and Ventura are the only four names where Apple has filed new applications, however.

Hundreds of Apple Screen Engineers and Execs Scoped Out New Tech at Display Week

Hundreds of Apple employees attended Display Week in Los Angeles, California this week to scout out new display technology that could be used in future products, reports Bloomberg. Display Week is an event that's hosted by the Society for Information Display. It's aimed at connecting startups, influencers, innovators, technical experts, and others who are in the display field in some way. All of the major display companies were on hand to show off new technology, such as high-resolution VR headset displays, ultra high-resolution OLEDs, sound-emitting panels, full-color E-ink technology, and more. A total of 369 Apple employees were registered to attend display week, up from 280 in 2017. Apple sent far more employees to the event than other tech companies did. Amazon, for example, sent 25, while Google sent 40 and Oculus sent 23. DisplayMate's Ray Soneira, known for evaluating smartphone displays, told Bloomberg that Apple is "making a statement" by sending so many engineers. "Apple is trying to show the display industry that they're a top-tier screen developer now, in addition to being a buyer," he said. Apple recently made its first foray into OLEDs for iPhones with the iPhone X, and its displays are consistently rated as some of the best by Soneira. According to Bloomberg, some Apple engineers at the event "appeared particularly interested" in virtual-reality headsets developed by Japan Display, while others closely examined new high-resolution panels from Samsung and displays that are designed to work well when wet. Several of the Apple engineers

MacRumors Giveaway: Win an Atlas Executive Athletic Holdall From WaterField Designs

For this week's giveaway, we've teamed up with WaterField Designs to offer MacRumors readers a chance to win the company's Atlas Executive Athletic Holdall, a bag that's ideal for everything from work to travel to the gym. Priced at $429, the 22-liter Atlas Holdall is true to its name and can hold all of your gear and then some. In the main briefcase compartment, it features a padded laptop pocket that's able to hold up to a 15-inch MacBook Pro, plus there's a padded tablet pocket that will fit an iPad as big as the 12.9-inch iPad Pro. There are also two deep pockets that are designed to hold cables, cords, and other small accessories, while a document compartment holds notebooks, files, folders, and more. A zippered pocket at the front is able to hold keys, cards, wallet, your phone, and more for quick access, and there's a leather-wrapped handle for grip plus a removable suspension strap. A separate workout compartment can hold workout clothes, a water bottle, a towel, and other workout gear. It can also hold extra clothes such as a change of clothes for work, and there's a collapsible shoe pocket for your gym shoes. The Atlas Holdall is available in a black ballistic nylon or a brown waxed canvas material. While the black ballistic will hide wear and tear, the waxed canvas embraces it and will take on a unique look over time. Both colors are water resistant and feature leather accents and waterproof zippers. We have one Atlas Executive Athletic Holdall to give away to a MacRumors reader. To enter to win, use the Rafflecopter widget below and

Apple Rejects Valve's Steam Link App Due to 'Business Conflicts'

It looks like Valve's planned Steam Link app for iOS devices isn't coming after all, because Apple has rejected the app due to "business conflicts." In a statement, Valve said that Apple initially approved Steam Link for release on May 7, but ultimately decided to reject the app because of conflicts that had not been recognized by the original review team.On Monday, May 7th, Apple approved the Steam Link app for release. On Weds, May 9th, Valve released news of the app. The following morning, Apple revoked its approval citing business conflicts with app guidelines that had allegedly not been realized by the original review team. Valve appealed, explaining the Steam Link app simply functions as a LAN-based remote desktop similar to numerous remote desktop applications already available on the App Store. Ultimately, that appeal was denied leaving the Steam Link app for iOS blocked from release. The team here spent many hours on this project and the approval process, so we're clearly disappointed. But we hope Apple will reconsider in the future. Valve's appeals have not been successful at the current point in time, and the company is now hoping that media attention may spur Apple to change its mind. The Steam Link app for iOS, which was announced on May 9, is designed to allow Steam users to play their Steam games on an iPhone, iPad, or Apple TV using either a 5GHz WiFi network or a wired Ethernet connection to a host PC or Mac. Valve was planning to launch the Steam Link app this week, and Valve had worked to add Steam Link support for the Steam Controller and

Samsung Ordered to Pay Apple $539 Million in iPhone Design Patent Retrial

The latest Samsung v. Apple trial wrapped up this afternoon after the jury decided that Samsung must pay Apple a total of $539 million for violating Apple's design patents with five android devices sold between 2010 and 2011, reports CNET. A total of $533,316,606 was awarded to Apple for Samsung's violation of three design patents, while the remaining $5,325,050 was for Samsung's infringement on two of Apple's utility patents. Samsung and Apple were back in court to redetermined damages after Samsung appealed to the Supreme Court and said that the original damages award, which was set at $399 million after several appeals, was a "disproportionate" sum for the design violation. The Supreme Court ordered the U.S. Court of Appeals to redetermine the damages amount, leading to today's victory for Apple. The core issue of the retrial was whether the damages should be based on the total value of the iPhone or if Samsung's fee should be based on just the elements of the iPhone that it copied. Apple argued that its payment should be based on the full value of the iPhone, while Samsung argued that it should pay a lesser amount. They're seeking profits on the entire phone," argued Samsung lawyer John Quinn. "Apple's design patents do not cover the entire phone. They are entitled to profits only on [infringing] components, not the entire phone." Apple asked the jury to award $1 billion in damages, while Samsung asked jurors to limit the damages to $28 million. Unfortunately for Samsung, the jury sided with Apple, and the new award is more than Samsung would have

tvOS 12 Wishlist: Features MacRumors Readers Want to See Added to the Apple TV in 2018

At the upcoming Worldwide Developers Conference, Apple will introduce new versions of iOS, macOS, tvOS, and watchOS, and for those latter two updates, we have no idea what to expect. Historically, Apple hasn't introduced major changes in its tvOS updates, but the operating system is still new and there could be some larger scale changes in the works for 2018. We've asked MacRumors readers what they'd most like to see in tvOS 12, and this is what they had to say. Atmos support - Apple promised to add Dolby Atmos support to the Apple TV, and has yet to do so. tvOS 12 would be the ideal time to do so, and it's certainly a feature many MacRumors readers want. Audio passthrough - Along those same lines, MacRumors readers would also like to see support for digital audio passthrough. Picture-in-picture - A classic feature on a lot of television sets, picture-in-picture mode is not supported on the Apple TV. MacRumors reader Bbednarz would like to see picture-in-picture added for watching multiple shows, watching a show while using an app, and more. Safari - Apple isn't likely to add Safari to the Apple TV to allow for web browsing, but it's still a feature at least one MacRumors reader would like to see available as an option. Open screensavers - The Apple TV can only display screensavers that are sourced from Apple, but it would be nice to be able to add non-Apple screensaver options if desired. tvOS App Store access via computer - MacRumors reader HobeSoundDarryl has a long wishlist for tvOS 12, including a suggestion for an option to browse through

Amazon's Alexa Recorded a Woman's Private Conversation and Sent it to a Contact

A woman in Portland recently had an alarming experience with her Alexa-enabled devices after a private conversation was recorded and sent to a random contact, according to a news report from Seattle's Kiro7 news. The woman, Danielle, and her family had Amazon devices situated in each room for home control, and two weeks ago, one of those devices apparently recorded a conversation about hardwood floors and sent it to a person on their contact list. There are no details on how the recording was delivered to the contact. But Danielle said two weeks ago their love for Alexa changed with an alarming phone call. "The person on the other line said, 'unplug your Alexa devices right now,'" she said. "'You're being hacked.'" That person was one of her husband's employees, calling from Seattle. "We unplugged all of them and he proceeded to tell us that he had received audio files of recordings from inside our house," she said. "At first, my husband was, like, 'no you didn't!' And the (recipient of the message) said 'You sat there talking about hardwood floors.' And we said, 'oh gosh, you really did hear us.'"Danielle confirmed that the recordings received by the contact were indeed conversations picked up by her Alexa device, and in no way was she informed that Alexa was sending the recording to a contact. She contacted Amazon and was told that the "device just guessed what we were saying." Amazon apologized and told her it would fix the issue. Alexa has an option to send a message to a contact name using a voice recording, but Alexa is supposed to vocally confirm such

Unprotected T-Mobile API Let Anyone Get Customer Data With Just a Phone Number

A security vulnerability in T-Mobile's website let anyone gain access to the personal details of any T-Mobile customer using just a phone number, reports ZDNet. An internal T-Mobile employee tool, promotool.t-mobile.com, had a hidden API that provided T-Mobile customer data when a customer's cell phone number was added to the end of the web address. Data that was available included full name, address, billing account number, and for some customers, tax identification numbers. Account data, such as service status and billing status was also included, but it does not appear that credit card numbers, passwords, or other sensitive information was compromised. ZDNet says that there were "references to account PINs used by customers as a security question" which could be used to hijack T-Mobile accounts. The API was used by T-Mobile staff to look up customer data, but it was accessible to the public and not protected by a password. T-Mobile rectified the issue in early April after it was disclosed by security researcher Ryan Stevenson, who ultimately earned $1,000. In a statement provided to ZDNet, T-Mobile says that it does not appear customer data was accessed using the API, but research suggests the API had been exposed since at least October 2017.A T-Mobile spokesperson said: "The bug bounty program exists so that researchers can alert us to vulnerabilities, which is what happened here, and we support this type of responsible and coordinated disclosure." "The bug was patched as soon as possible and we have no evidence that any customer information was

Mophie Launches New Wireless Charging Kit Designed for Travel

Mophie today announced the launch of the Charge Stream Travel Kit, which is a wireless charging kit that's designed for use while traveling, as the name suggests. Designed for the iPhone X, iPhone 8, and iPhone 8 Plus, as well as other Qi-enabled devices, the Charge Stream Travel Kit includes a 5W Charge Stream Pad Mini, which is a wireless charger that can also be purchased separately, paired with a 2.4A wall adapter, a 2.4A car adapter, and a 1.5-foot USB-A to micro-USB cable. All of the components for the travel kit come in a handy case that keeps them all together and that can be easily stowed in a backpack or a car. The Charge Stream Pad Mini is a 5W charger, which means it's not going to charge the iPhone X, 8, and 8 Plus at the faster 7.5W charging speed. Design wise, the Charge Stream Pad Mini is compact and slightly elevated with a low profile design that works anywhere. It includes a non-slip rubber grip to keep your iPhone in place. Mophie is charging $49.95 for the Charge Stream Travel Kit on its website and the Charge Stream Mini Pad can also be purchased separately for

Apple Knew About Bendgate and Touch Disease iPhone 6 Issues Months in Advance of Repair Programs

As part of an ongoing lawsuit over the "Touch Disease" manufacturing issue affecting iPhone 6 and 6 Plus devices, Apple was required to provide the court with internal testing documents that suggest the company knew about iPhone 6 and 6 Plus design problems before the two devices launched. The full scope of the internal documents remain under seal, but the judge presiding over the case, Lucy Koh, made some of the information public when she published an opinion on the case earlier this month, and Motherboard shared the details she offered up about the case. Apple knew that the iPhone 6 was 3.3 times more likely to bend than the iPhone 5s, while the iPhone 6 Plus was 7.2 times more likely to bend ahead of the release of the two devices. Publicly, though, Apple said that the two devices had been "thoroughly tested" and evaluated for "strength and durability." Bending, according to Apple, was "extremely rare" and only happened to a small number of customers. At the heart of the Touch Disease problem is an earlier issue that received widespread attention -- bendgate. Bendgate was the first and most visible issue affecting the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, but the malleability of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus is also what led to Touch Disease, which occurs when the chip that detects touch input becomes unseated from the logic board from bending or as Apple claims, multiple drops. Apple quietly addressed Touch Disease in an engineering change implemented in May 2016, but did not launch a repair program until months later after the problem received significant attention. From

Apple Inks Deal With Volkswagen for Self-Driving Employee Shuttles

Apple has signed a deal with Volkswagen to use Volkswagen vans as self-driving shuttles designed to transport employees around its various campuses and office buildings in the San Francisco Bay Area, reports The New York Times. Apple has been working on developing the shuttle program, called "PAIL" or Palo Alto to Infinite Loop, since last summer. At the time news of Apple's work on the program first surfaced, the company was said to be planning to install its own self-driving software in a commercial vehicle from an automaker, which has turned out to be Volkswagen. One of the Lexus SUVs Apple uses to test its autonomous driving software Under the terms of the deal, T6 Transporter vans from Volkswagen will be turned into self-driving shuttles for employees. Apple's self-driving shuttle program is said to be behind schedule and "consuming nearly all of the Apple car team's attention," hinting at ongoing problems on its car-related project, which has already been scaled back. Apple originally had grander plans for autonomous vehicles and over the course of the past several years, attempted to ink deals with companies like BMW and Mercedes-Benz, which would have led to the development of an all-electric autonomous vehicle. According to today's report, no deal was able to be established because Apple was asking potential partner companies to "hand over control" of data and design, something no car manufacturer was prepared to do. When its grandiose self-driving vehicle plans fell through, Apple shifted focus to autonomous driving software under the leadership

macOS 10.14 Wishlist: Features MacRumors Readers Hope to See in the Next Version of macOS

Apple is expected to preview the next-generation version of macOS, macOS 10.14, at the keynote event for the Worldwide Developers Conference, set to be held on June 4. Though the keynote is less than two weeks away, we've heard little about what we might expect to see in the new version of macOS aside from the possibility of cross-compatible Mac and iOS apps. With so few rumors about macOS 10.14 available, we turned to the MacRumors community to ask our readers what they would like to see the most in the next version of macOS. Unified macOS and iOS design - With rumors of apps compatible with both iOS devices and Macs, MacRumors reader Glmnet1 would also like to see a more unified design between Macs and iOS devices. What that might look like is unclear, and while it could happen at some point, it's not likely for this year as we're not expecting major design changes with iOS 12 or macOS 10.14. Apple iOS apps for Mac - In the same vein, based on cross platform app rumors, several MacRumors readers would like to see iOS-exclusive apps like Apple News, Health, Activity, and Home made available on the Mac. A dedicated Apple Music app that's separate from iTunes is also on at least one reader's wishlist, as is an improved version of iTunes. HomeKit - A way to control HomeKit devices on Mac is a highly requested feature, either through the aforementioned Home app for the Mac or through Siri. At the current time, while Siri is available on macOS, the personal assistant can't control HomeKit devices from the Mac. Complications as Menu Bar items -

These Custom iPhone X Models Made From Marble, Alligator Leather, or Sapphire Glass Cost Up to $10,000

Hadoro, a Parisian company that specializes in high-priced upscale iPhone cases, custom iPhones, and Apple Watch bands, today released a new lineup of custom iPhone X models made from a range of luxury materials including wood, sapphire glass, carbon fiber, marble, and alligator leather set in anodized stainless steel frames. It's not cheap to replace the entire casing of an iPhone with a new shell crafted from expensive, rare materials, so these iPhones, priced at 4,500 to 8,900 euros ($5,250 - $10,400) are not designed for the average Apple customer. The most expensive of the devices replace the glass body of the iPhone X with a gold-plated frame covered in alligator leather complete with a diamond Apple logo, while some of the more affordable options are made from anodized, gold plated stainless steel covered with Karelian birch, sourced from a small forest in Finland. Several other iPhones feature back panels made from durable, scratch proof sapphire glass, which as we know, Apple at one point explored as a material for the iPhone. The Moire Gold iPhone X, for example, features sapphire glass with a silkscreen printed moiré design nestled in a frame made from black anodized stainless steel and carbon fiber. The craziest of Hadoro's iPhone X models is a carbon fiber model that has a 3D image of a skeleton with glowing eye sockets. The eyes of the skeleton light up whenever the iPhone is turned on, and the color can be customized in the device settings. All of these modified iPhones start out as the 256GB iPhone X and then have the housing, buttons,

Apple Offering $50 Credit to Customers Who Paid for iPhone 6 and Later Battery Replacements From January to December 2017

Apple is providing a $50 credit to all customers who paid for an out-of warranty battery replacement for an iPhone 6 or later between the dates of January 1, 2017 and December 28, 2017, the company announced today. The $50 credit is an extension of Apple's $29 battery replacement program, which went into effect in December of 2017 to provide lower-cost battery replacement options to customers potentially affected by performance throttling due to battery degradation. All customers who had a battery replacement from an Apple Store, Apple Repair Center, or an Apple Authorized Service Provider are eligible for the $50 credit, which will be provided as an electronic funds transfer or a credit on the credit card used to pay for the battery replacement. Apple is only issuing refunds for replacements completed at an Apple authorized service location, so those who may have received repairs from a third-party repair outlet will not be eligible for a refund. The program is available to customers who paid the full $79 price for an out-of-warranty battery replacement on an iPhone 6, 6 Plus, SE, 6s, 6s Plus, 7, or 7 Plus. The $50 credit will bring the price paid for the replacement down to $29, the same price Apple is charging for replacement batteries through the end of 2018. While Apple is offering $50 in the United States, battery replacement credits in other countries will vary based on the original price of the out-of-warranty replacement. Those who paid for an out-of-warranty battery replacement will be contacted by Apple via email between May 23 and July 27 with

Apple Supplier TSMC Begins Production on Processors Destined for 2018 iPhones

Apple supplier TSMC (Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company) has started production on the next-generation 7-nanometer A12 chips that will be used in the 2018 iPhone lineup, reports Bloomberg. TSMC in late April announced that its 7-nanometer process node has entered into high volume manufacturing, but did not specify that it was working on the Apple A12 processors set to be built into the iPhones that are expected in September. The new 7-nanometer chips will offer approximately 40 percent power and area benefit over the 10-nanometer process used for the A11 processors in the 2017 iPhones. As Bloomberg says, the chips will be smaller, faster, and more efficient. TSMC is believed to be the sole partner Apple is working with on the A12 chip. TSMC was also Apple's only supplier for the A11 chips in the iPhone X, 8, and 8 Plus. All three of Apple's 2018 iPhones are expected to adopt the A12 chips that are currently in development. Rumors suggest Apple is working on a second-generation 5.8-inch OLED iPhone that's a successor to the iPhone X, a larger 6.5-inch OLED iPhone that can be thought of as an "iPhone X Plus," and a lower-cost 6.1-inch LCD iPhone. Along with A12 chips, all three are expected to include a TrueDepth camera system for Face ID capabilities and an edge-to-edge design with minimal bezels and no Home

FBI 'Grossly Inflated' Statistics on Investigations Stymied by Encrypted Smartphones

The United States Federal Bureau of Investigation provided Congress with "grossly inflated" statistics on the number of electronic devices it has been been unable to access due to encryption, reports The Washington Post. Last year, the FBI claimed to have been locked out of close to 7,800 devices that were connected to crimes, but the actual number of devices that were inaccessible is smaller, closer in scope to between 1,000 and 2,000. The FBI discovered an error in the method used for counting encrypted smartphones last month, and has not yet completed a full internal audit to determine the correct number. "The FBI's initial assessment is that programming errors resulted in significant over-counting of mobile devices reported," the FBI said in a statement Tuesday. The bureau said the problem stemmed from the use of three distinct databases that led to repeated counting of the same phones. Tests of the methodology conducted in April 2016 failed to detect the flaw, according to people familiar with the work.The FBI's inflated numbers are a problem because FBI director Christopher Wray has, at several points in time, used those statistics to warn of the dangers criminals using encryption to "go dark" and evade law enforcement oversight. Back in October, for example, Wray said the inability to access such a large number of encrypted smartphones was a major problem. "To put it mildly, this is a huge, huge problem," said Wray. "It impacts investigations across the board - narcotics, human trafficking, counterterrorism, counterintelligence, gangs, organized crime,