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Apple rumored to be releasing second-generation iPhone SE next year

After rumors about an updated iPhone SE went nowhere this year, China’s Economic Daily News is again claiming that there will be a second-generation version of the device coming, this time in the first half of 2018. The new assembly plant in Bangalore, India that helped Apple get its foot in the door in India is now rumored to be the likely site to produce the new model as well. While Apple skipped updating the iPhone SE in 2017, markets like India and China still have high demand for a smartphone at a lower price point than the iPhone 8, 8 Plus and X. Last month a questionable report from Tekz24 speculated about the hardware inside a new SE, including an upgrade to the A10 Fusion chip and slightly larger battery than the current device.

Freedom Mobile to begin offering iPhones on Dec. 8

Freedom Mobile is set to begin offering new iPhones for the first time, MobileSyrup reports. Freedom will provide the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X at all of its retail locations across Canada, alongside other older models in its western stores. Network upgrades have hindered the roll out of the older devices in eastern Canada, with Freedom promising to support those by “early 2018.” All of the iPhones are available for no money down and Freedom’s monthly payments amount to hundreds of dollars in savings over the outright price of the devices.

Apple looking to Intel for 5G modems as fight with Qualcomm continues

As Apple slugs it out in court with longtime modem supplier Qualcomm, the company is cooperating with Intel to prepare its devices for the switch to 5G technology, Fast Company reports. Qualcomm’s current 5G chips offer more specialized features, but a source said since many of those features won’t be widely adopted by carriers it’s likely Intel’s 5G modem will be more than sufficient for future iPhones. The source claims Intel has “multiple thousands” of employees working on the technology, calling the iPhone contract a “must-win” for the company. Apple first started splitting orders between Qualcomm and Intel with the iPhone 7 in 2016 and Intel has proved more than willing to customize its products for Apple. With Verizon abandoning the older CDMA networks that required Apple to keep some of its modem business with Qualcomm, Apple has one less reason to split orders for future devices.

Apple reportedly integrating streaming sports into TV app next month

Apple’s TV app is set to gain live streaming sports from ESPN next month, 9to5Mac reports. A source from a “major sports network” confirmed the launch date, claiming the update will arrive as part of iOS 11.2 on or around December 4, as well as being enabled on tvOS 11.2 at the same time. The app will gain live games from ESPN along with live scores and game clocks in a single interface. The app also includes the ability to receive live alerts for close games so users can switch back and forth. The feature is not yet live in any of the iOS 11.2 apps we’ve seen so far.

iOS 11.1.2 update released, fixing cold temperature problem with iPhone X screen

Apple has released the iOS 11.1.2 update, which contains a fix for the iPhone X’s screen becoming unbresponsive in cold weather. The update also fixes distortion problems in Live Photos and videos recorded by the iPhone X along with other minor bug fixes.

10-year-old boy unlocks mom’s iPhone X with Face ID

In the latest case of mistaken Face ID verification, a video showing a 10-year-old boy unlocking his mom’s iPhone X underscores previous reports that even non-identical family members may be able to access the devices, WIRED reports. While hackers using sophisticated 3D mapping to create elaborate masks might not be of much concern to the average iPhone X owner, knowing that a child could fool the device and scroll through their texts or order food off GrubHub may give some pause. In an interview with WIRED, Attaullah Malik puzzled over his son’s ability to unlock his wife’s iPhone X reliably but not his, since “People generally say he looks more like me.”

Report: Apple working on 3D sensors for 2019 iPhone’s rear-facing camera

Apple is working on bringing a 3D sensor system to the iPhone’s rear camera as early as 2019, Bloomberg reports. People familiar with the plan said the sensors would likely be different than those that power the iPhone X’s TrueDepth sensor system in the front-facing camera, which powers Face ID and other features. Instead of using the structured light technique that projects thousands of laser dots onto the user’s face, the rear-facing sensor would use time-of-flight measurements that calculate the return time for laser light projected off objects and use that to create a 3D image of the environment. Sources said Apple has already reached out to prospective suppliers for the new sensors.

Report: iPhone 8 production may decrease as a result of iPhone X and iPhone 8 Plus popularity

KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has suggested that Apple’s production of the iPhone 8 may decrease by over 50 percent this quarter due to strong consumer preference for the iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X models. According to a research note obtained by MacRumors, demand for the iPhone 8 has been lower than expected and could result in fewer orders for Apple’s supplier Pegatron. While Apple doesn’t disclose iPhone sales on a per-model basis, CEO Tim Cook noted recently that the company was surprised by how fast iPhone 8 Plus sales took off after the new model was released, citing it as “the fastest start of any Plus model.” Research firm Canalys also noted that the iPhone 8 Plus outpaced the iPhone 8 last quarter, making it the first 5.5-inch iPhone to beat out it’s smaller sibling in shipments.

Apple updates Clips app with iPhone X exclusive ‘Scenes’ feature

Apple has released a major update to its Clips app for the iPhone X, adding a new Scenes feature that takes advantage of the TrueDepth camera to place you in animated, 360-degree scenes with matching selfie filters to transform your appearance. Some of the scenes include the Millennium Falcon with a Star Wars style holo effect filter, a sketchbook scene with a filter that provides a charcoal drawing effect, and a scene that puts you into an 8-bit video game setting. Since Scenes require the TrueDepth camera, they’re only available to iPhone X users, however Clips 2.0 adds plenty of additional enhancements for users of other iPhone models as well, including a completely redesigned user interface, a collection of new stickers, posters, and titles, featuring Star Wars characters and Mickey and Friends along with retro Apple-designed stickers, four new artistic effects, a selection of new filters from the Camera app, and 21 new royalty-free soundtracks. Clips also now sync via iCloud so you can view and edit your work from any of your iOS devices.

iPhone X teardown reveals most efficient device yet; some drop tests find it to be very breakable

In its full teardown of the iPhone X, iFixit found the device to be drastically reconfigured inside to maximize performance in the smallest space possible. The stacked logic board is of special interest, taking up only around 70 percent of the space of the iPhone 8 Plus’ board but cramming in even more chips and connectors by being folded in half. That design leaves more room for the two battery cells that give the iPhone X a small edge on the iPhone 8 Plus despite coming in a much smaller footprint. Internal brackets, spot welds and foam hold the front-facing cameras firmly in place so they can pull off delicate features like Portrait Mode, and the rear-facing Face ID camera technology comes out of the display when it’s separated, making the OLED display replaceable without fiddling with the cameras embedded within it.

Siblings who aren’t even twins finding ways to break Face ID; other methods are hit or miss

Apple admitted from the start that its one-in-a-million figure for the odds that someone other than you could unlock your iPhone X with Face ID comes down substantially when you start facoring in twins and siblings, and users have wasted no time putting it to the test. One Reddit video shows that even non-identical siblings who just look enough alike can fool the face scanning technology. While the second brother’s face wasn’t able to open the iPhone X on several failed attempts, after repeated tries and passcode entries after failure, the second brother adding a pair of black-rimmed glasses did the trick, allowing him to unlock the device. That leaves the question open as to whether the iPhone X was actually fooled or whether it was trained to recognize the second brother’s face as close enough by all of the repeated failures, and Apple hasn’t shed any light on whether the Face ID technology can be taught to accept a greater degree of variation. Another video shows two half-brothers breaking Face ID, but one of the brothers is 14 and Apple has warned that kids who don’t have “fully developed facial features” will be somewhat problematic for the Face ID scans as well, so that could be a contributing factor.

Animoji Karaoke videos produced on iPhone X take Twitter by storm

With last week’s release of the iPhone X, the much-ridiculed Animoji got a serious boost when Fast Company’s Harry McCracken invented a new use for the feature in the form of Animoji Karaoke. The simple premise — lip-sync a song as one of the Animoji avatars using the iPhone X’s 3D camera — immediately took off, even spawning an @animojikaraoke Twitter page. McCracken even has some tips on how to hack the experience to get the highest quality videos, subverting the usual 10-second limit to Animoji recordings by using iOS 11’s screen-recording feature and bringing two videos into iMovie on a Mac to create a duet. He even took it to a new level by using iMovie to add in a high quality version of his songs, but the iPhone X’s microphone will do just fine for those who want to belt out a tune with the face of a cartoon without too much fuss. Let us know if you’ve tried to make your own Animoji Karaoke or found any epic productions in the comments below.

Apple acknowledges autocorrect bug in iOS 11.1

In a blog post, Apple has acknowledged a problem with the autocorrect feature in iOS 11.1 that is replacing the letter “i” with an “A” accompanied by a symbol. So far it’s the only autocorrect problem that Apple has specifically addressed, but we’ve seen other problems as well — like the word “it” being converted to “I.T.” or “I’d” being changed to “I.D.” — and there’s an entire Reddit thread dedicated to the issue where users have seen everything from strange capitalization suggestions to missing punctuation fixes like changing “im” to “I’m” as it usually does.

Apple releases iOS 11.2 developer beta for iPhone X

After developers complained that the iOS 11.2 beta wasn’t available for their new iPhone X devices, Apple pushed out a compatible version late Friday afternoon. Developers who had already updated to the iOS 11.2 beta on their older devices initially had no way to restore their iCloud or iTunes backups onto Apple’s newest iPhone, as a backup cannot be restored onto an iPhone running an older iOS version. The quick fix issued by Apple ensures that developers can now load their backups onto the iPhone X and proceed with their work.

iOS developers stuck waiting for iOS 11.2 beta release for iPhone X

Despite releasing iOS 11.2 earlier this week for all current iPhone models, Apple has not actually yet pushed out a build of the latest beta for the iPhone X. Numerous iOS developers who received the new iPhone X today who had already updated to the iOS 11.2 beta are now discovering that they have no way to restore their iCloud or iTunes backups onto Apple’s newest iPhone, as a backup cannot be restored onto an iPhone running an older iOS version. While some have reported success in downgrading their older iPhones to iOS 11.1, others have reported the loss of some data such as health and activity information and iCloud keychain entries. Apple has provided no information on when an iOS 11.2 beta build will be released for the iPhone X.

iPhone X: Unboxing + comparison photos

We’ve just gotten our hands on Apple’s new iPhone X, and have a quick first look with some unboxing and comparison photos. With all of the news around the iPhone X, there aren’t a lot of surprises here, and it looks pretty much like you’d expect it to on the surface, with the edge-to-edge OLED screen looking as impressive first-hand as it does in the photos. As with the iPhone 8 models, Apple is also still bundling only its 5W power adapter alongside the usual wired EarPods and standard Lightning cable. Surprisingly, the iPhone X doesn’t appear to include iOS 11.1 — the version we received came with iOS 11.0.1 installed. Keep your eyes out for our full, independent, comprehensive review of the new iPhone X next week once we’ve had a chance to put it through its paces.

Third-party apps will be able to collect facial data on iPhone X

Third party developers will be able to fully utilize the TrueDepth camera on the iPhone X to collect advanced facial data, according to a new report by Reuters. Although Apple has promised that the facial profiles used for Face ID will be securely stored in the iPhone X Secure Enclave — in the same way that fingerprints are stored for Touch ID authentication on other iPhone models — third-party app developers will be permitted to access the advanced features of the TrueDepth camera to access facial recognition features that would allow them to build entertainment apps for the iPhone X, such as pinning three-dimensional masks for selfies or mirroring real-world facial expressions on an in-game character.

Report: Apple to unlock all Canadian iPhones over-the-air on Dec. 1

Apple is planning to remotely unlock all Canadian iPhones over-the-air on Dec. 1 to comply with new government regulations banning locked iPhones as of that date, according to a leaked document obtained by MobileSyrup. A document obtained from smartphone retailer WOW! Mobile notes that locked iPhones will be “automatically be unlocked over-the-air effective December 1st.”

Apple going after press, YouTube stars ahead of iPhone X launch in uncharacteristic move

Instead of its usual method of sending a few products to tech reviewers and mostly letting the device speak for itself, Apple is taking a decidedly different approach with the iPhone X, sending the new phone out to a wide swath of publications and angering some of the dedicated tech bloggers. John Gruber over at Daring Fireball seemed particularly bent out of shape, ripping reviews from publications and YouTube celebrities that he didn’t find up to the usual standards. Recode remarked on Apple letting YouTubers jump the line as well, saying “For many of us, they won’t replace the utility of more sophisticated reviews, which are supposed to tell us whether the iPhone X is worth our $1,000. They’re not great videos, frankly.”

Apple releases iOS 11.1, watchOS 4.1, tvOS 11.1

Apple has released iOS 11.1, watchOS 4.1, and tvOS 11.1, featuring some notable improvements. The new version of iOS brings back the 3D Touch gesture for multitasking, much more fluid scroll-to-top animations and more than 70 new emoji options. The new watchOS gets an improved Music app with full iCloud Music Library access and support for Apple Music and Apple Radio streaming on the Series 3, taking the next step toward making the Apple Watch less dependent on the iPhone. GymKit support for syncing the Apple Watch with smart gym equipment also landed, but the accompanying equipment hasn’t made its way out into the world yet. The update for Apple TV was the least impressive, offering only bug fixes and no real new features.

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