The European Commission will rule against Ireland’s tax deals with Apple on Tuesday, Reuters reports. The commission will reportedly make the recommendation for Ireland to recoup more than 1 billion Euros (about $1.19 billion) in back taxes from Apple. Both Apple and Ireland have previously said they would appeal any such ruling, and neither Apple nor the European Commission has commented as of yet. Despite the commission’s recommendation, Irish authorities will be able to determine exactly what must be owed — further details will likely emerge upon the expected official announcement from the European Commission on Tuesday.
A nationwide class action lawsuit has been filed against Apple by some iPhone 6/6 Plus owners, Reuters reports. The suit has been prompted by the issue which iFixit recently dubbed “Touch Disease” — flickering gray lines appear at the top of an iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus, causing the screen to become glitchy or unresponsive. iFixit claims Apple has refused to recognize the problem as a major issue. The problem may be caused by bending either phone, which causes connections between the touchscreen controller chips and logic board to break down.
Apple has sent out media invitations to its upcoming event, slated for Sept. 7. The invite features a series of colored dots and a simple caption: “See you on the 7th.” The event is being held at 10 a.m. Pacific time, in San Francisco’s Bill Graham Civic Auditorium. It’s expected that we’ll see the new iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus debut at the event, along with launch dates for iOS 10, tvOS 10, and watchOS 3. It’s also conceivable that we’ll see new Apple Watch models and new MacBook Pro models. We’ll have live coverage on Twitter during the event, with all the vital information to follow here on iLounge.com.
Phillips is adding a motion sensor to provide more automated control options for its line of Hue bulbs (see our recent review for the White Ambience Starter Kit) and lightstrips. The battery-powered Hue Motion Sensor connects to a Hue Bridge and is wireless, so it can be placed anywhere. When activated, the sensor will turn lights on when a user enters a room, shut them off when they leave, and perform other set actions like turning lights on or off depending on the level of daylight and activating different lighting configurations at different times of day. One bridge can handle up to 12 motion sensors, each of which has a range of about 16 feet. The Hue Motion Sensor will cost $40 and be available on the Philips Hue website alongside the new Ambiance A19 bulbs starting in October.
New photos discovered on Chinese website Weibo and posted by The Malignant show an alleged upgraded battery for an upcoming Apple Watch. The new battery has a 334 mAh capacity, improving on the current Apple Watch’s 246 mAh. KGI analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has predicted that Apple will release an upgraded version of the original with improved internal components and better waterproofing alongside an “Apple Watch 2” that will share a similar outward design, but will boast a higher capacity battery, GPS radio, and a barometer for improved geolocation capabilities.
For Monday’s iLounge Deal, you can get the FresheTech Splash Tunes Bluetooth Shower Speaker for only $19.99 — that’s 59% off the regular price. This powerful waterproof speaker lets you jam out in the shower, with a suction cup to attach it to the wall and waterproof buttons to let you easily pause, skip tracks, adjust the volume, and even answer calls using the built-in speakerphone.
Spotify has been penalizing artists who release exclusive content on Apple Music, Bloomberg reports. According to inside sources, musicians who release new material exclusively on Apple Music have been told that their tracks will not be included on featured playlists, and are finding their songs buried in Spotify search results. The practice of doing this has apparently been ongoing for about a year, but some sources suggest that Spotify’s efforts have escalated over the past few months. Further, the practice doesn’t seem to be restricted to Apple Music; artists who have done exclusive releases on Tidal have also been retaliated against, according to sources.
Update: In regard to Spotify burying search results, a Spotify spokesperson has reached out to us with the statement that “This is unequivocally false.”
Apple has released the seventh public beta of iOS 10 through its Apple Software Beta Program, continuing enhancements to Music, Maps, Messages, and News. Users who have already signed up for the Apple Software Beta Program should be able to log in and download the new versions now; users who haven’t signed up can do so at the same site. The company also released the corresponding developer beta for iOS 10 along with a seventh developer beta of tvOS 10. As usual, the latest round of betas is intended to allow developers to continue working on the new features and APIs first debuted at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference last month, and the beta cycle continues to ramp up as the new operating systems move closer to final release, with the latest iOS 10 developer beta representing the third new beta released in the past two weeks.
Despite the popularity of cloud storage services like iCloud, Dropbox, and Google Drive, increasing security and privacy concerns are fueling a desire by many users to keep their important data completely under their own control, rather than trusting it to another company's cloud. Although storing data on your computer or external hard drive at your home or office can certainly make you feel more secure about where you're keeping your data, in an era of iPhones and iPads, that often creates a tradeoff between having access to your important data while on the go and trusting it to a third-party cloud provider. Western Digital's My Cloud ($150-$380) attempts to bridge this gap, providing the best of both worlds in the form of an external network attached storage (NAS) device that keeps all of your data locally stored under your own control, while providing remote access through the company's web portal and companion iOS app. While My Cloud has been around for a while as a simple NAS device, the company's somewhat recent release of a My Cloud OS 3 update for the hardware and a significantly enhanced iOS app have made the device a much more capable replacement for services like Dropbox.
Lending credence to previous rumors and speculation, sources have told Bloomberg that Apple is working on a “major redesign” of the iPhone for 2017 that will remove the Home button and focus “more heavily on the display.” Back in May, Daring Fireball’s John Gruber revealed “scuttlebutt” that the 2017 iPhone would feature an “all-new form factor” getting rid of the top and bottom edges and incorporating the Touch ID sensor behind the glass. Separate reports also suggested Apple is working on an all-glass casing for the 2017 model.