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Supply shortfalls of upgraded components may delay iPhone 8 production to October/November

Well-connected KGI analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has added his voice to growing speculation that Apple’s OLED iPhone 8 will debut later than the usual September launch time frame. Kuo said Apple’s efforts to pack as much cutting-edge technology as possible into the device will push mass production of the iPhone 8 into October or even November, with ‘significant hardware upgrades’ like the OLED screen, 3D camera sensors, integrated fingerprint scanner and A11 processor causing supply bottlenecks. While the new phone is expected to fly off the shelves once it’s released, Kuo said sales of the iPhone 7s and 7s Plus — thought to be releasing on the usual September schedule — will likely be worse than usual as customers either decide to wait for the flashy iPhone 8 or opt to buy a full-screen phone from Samsung, Huawei and Xiaomi instead. [via 9to5Mac]

Apple releases JavaScript API for playing Live Photos on the web

Apple has unveiled LivePhotosKit JS, a new JavaScript API that will allow web developers to incorporate support for playback of iOS Live Photos into their web pages. The API presents the player as a DOM element in a similar way to an image or video tag, and can be customized with photo and video resources and developers can choose to either control playback programmatically or provide controls to the end user. The new API is also relatively easy for web developers to implement, requiring only that they embed the JavaScript in their webpage and then enable JavaScript strict mode; an NPM installer is also available. Inline players are then added to HTML blocks using declarative markup. The new LivePhotosKit JS player is supported by most modern browsers, including Safari and Chrome on iOS and macOS, Chrome and Firefox on macOS and Windows, Edge and Internet Explorer 11 on Windows, and Chrome beta on Android devices.

Condé Nast Traveler reveals cover photo shot with iPhone 7 Plus

Condé Nast Traveler has joined the growing list of publications that have featured photos shot on the iPhone 7 Plus, using one such image for its May cover. The magazine asked a range of travel photographers to highlight the phone’s Portrait Mode, which applies a depth-of-field effect to replicate the focus on a subject and blurred background that traditional cameras provide. “iPhone photography has reimagined the way we gather memories while we travel, making it easier than ever before to capture, with exceptional precision, snapshots of our trips,” the magazine said in a press release. When the iPhone 7 Plus was first released last year, photographers from Sports Illustrated and ESPN used the device to capture sporting events to illustrate how well it captured fast motion shots.

iPhone 8 prototype’s edge-to-edge display fits iPhone 7 Plus-sized screen into iPhone 7-sized device

For its deluxe iPhone 8 model, Apple is “testing a screen that covers almost the entire front of the device,” Bloomberg reports. People familiar with the development process said the overall size of the prototype is close to that of the iPhone 7, but the removal of the home button and narrowing of the bezels makes for a display that’s a bit larger than that of the iPhone 7 Plus. Multiple prototypes are still being tested, some of which feature “symmetrical, slightly curved glass on the front and the back” that fits into a steel frame, similar to the iPhone 4’s design. Another version featured more dramatic curves, but with suppliers struggling to reliably produce such an extreme curve sources close to the development said Apple is more likely to go with the “more subdued curves,” or even a simpler aluminum-backed design.

Apple releases third betas of iOS 10.3.2, watchOS 3.2.2, and tvOS 10.2.1

Apple has rolled out a third beta of iOS 10.3.2 to its registered developers, along with new betas of watchOS 3.2.2 and tvOS 10.2.1. This latest betas all appear to include only bug fixes and security improvements.

Rumor: iPhone 8 with Touch ID under glass one of two prototypes being tested

The latest iPhone 8 rumor out of iDrop News claims Apple is testing two iPhone 8 prototypes, one with a Touch ID sensor on the back and another with the sensors placed under the glass. The new leak—purportedly from a Foxconn employee—supports last week’s images of a supposed rendering of an iPhone with the Touch ID, placing that model in contention with another that would place the sensor on the front like current models, but embed it under the glass rather than putting it in a dedicated home button. The report claims Apple is down to two models under consideration, a big reduction from the “more than ten prototypes” estimates we heard last fall. This latest prototype is also said to feature an “invisible” front-facing camera under the display itself—allowing for 4mm bezels around all four edges of the phone—and a large power button with two points of contact for some as-yet-unknown reason.

Leaked image reveals ‘iPhone 8’ render with vertical cameras, rear Touch ID sensor

A new image posted on /LEAKS earlier today shows what appears to be a manufacturing design render of a next-generation iPhone that features a vertical dual-camera layout and a Touch ID sensor on the rear of the device. The drawing appears to have come from a computer belonging to an Apple manufacturing partner, however there are no other details such as when the photo was taken, or even if it’s authentic. Text in the drawing suggests it’s from the EVT — Engineering Verification Testing — phase, which means it could be related to any one of the “more than ten prototypes” that Apple was reported to be considering last fall, and therefore may not have any connection to the final design of the new iPhone. [via MacRumors]

Analyst says integrated fingerprint scanner could hold up ‘iPhone 8’ release

While other rumors have claimed that adding 3D imaging technology and OLED screens are hindering progress on the iPhone 8, Timothy Arcuri of Cowen and Company believes it’s the integrated fingerprint sensor that’s the main issue, AppleInsider reports. “For the 5.8-inch OLED version, the biggest bottleneck remains integrating an under-glass fingerprint sensor into the display — the current yield rate of Apple’s in-house AuthenTec solution remains low and AAPL seems unwilling to use other vendors’ products,” Arcuri wrote in a note to investors. Arcuri said Apple is faced with three options in the face of the problem: Ditch Touch ID in favor of facial recognition, move the fingerprint scanner to the back of the phone or delay production of the iPhone 8. He sees the first two options as pretty unlikely, expecting to see the iPhone 8 announced alongside new iPhone 7s and 7s Plus models but possibly becoming available for purchase later.

Report: Apple may drop Dialog Semiconductor, build its own power management chips

An analyst at Bankhaus Lampe claims that there is “strong evidence” Apple could cut ties with Dialog Semiconductor and begin producing its own power management integrated circuits, Reuters reports. Another source said Apple is “poaching like crazy” from Dialog, hiring top engineers from the company and ramping up to begin its own in-house efforts. Neither Apple nor Dialog commented on the report, but Dialog’s stock lost as much as 36 percent in one day on the news.

Apple releases second betas of iOS 10.3.2, watchOS 3.2.2, and tvOS 10.2.1

Apple has rolled out a second beta of iOS 10.3.2 to its registered developers, along with new betas of watchOS 3.2.2 and tvOS 10.2.1. This latest iOS beta fixes issues with SiriKit and third-party VPN apps, while the new watchOS and tvOS betas appear to include only bug fixes and security improvements.

Well-connected developer claims future Apple CPUs won’t support 32-bit apps

In a series of tweets, well-connected developer Steve Troughton-Smith claims that Apple’s future A-series chips probably won’t support 32-bit apps. After several notifications from Apple that future versions of iOS won’t support 32-bit apps, developers have been speculating that the change will hit with iOS 11 when this year’s new iPhones are launched, and with the launch of iOS 10.3 the company started alerting users to the coming change whenever they open a 32-bit app. But Troughton-Smith has gone a step further, saying it “sounds like” Apple’s hardware won’t even support 32-bit and speculating that the move could free up “performance/die space.” [via 9to5Mac]

Report: ‘iPhone 8’ pre-orders to begin in Sept. to ship ‘several weeks later’

A new research report from long-time Apple analyst Brian White (via MacRumors) suggests that Apple will likely announce the 5.8-inch “iPhone 8” at a September event, alongside the two lower-end 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch “S” models, but that the premium model will only be available for pre-orders around that time, with delivery not expected until “several weeks later.” White notes that while the higher-end iPhone would still be expected to arrive in time for the Christmas holiday season, “challenges around the 3D sensing technology” would cause the more advanced model to not go into production until later in the year. This confirms a report earlier this week suggesting there would be delays related to not only the 3D sensors but also OLED screen lamination, but White adds that his contact was “emphatic about the delay,” but that it’s still early enough in the year that the situation could improve.

Australian consumer commission suing Apple over ‘Error 53’ iPhone failures

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) is suing Apple over last year’s Error 53 problem that disabled iPhones which had undergone third-party repairs, The Wall Street Journal reports. The ACCC, which is an arm of the Australian government focused on consumer law and competition regulation, is alleging that Apple was in violation of Australian laws by “bricking” iPhone devices and refusing to subsequently repair them at no cost to customers on the basis of the devices having been previously serviced by third-party service providers. The regulator is seeking monetary penalties that could amount in up to $829,000 (A$1.1m) per breach if the courts find Apple liable.

Apple patent hints at improvement to let Siri recognize specific voices

A new Apple patent spotted by Patently Apple would train Siri to recognize specific voices, creating the potential to limit who the digital assistant recognizes and add new controls. Once configured, a customized combination of a specific phrase and a user’s voice—which Apple’s patent refers to as a “lexical trigger”—would be required to get Siri to respond. Current voice-activated digital assistants respond to specific speech, but not to specific speakers, creating circumstances where a user’s request can be picked up and acted upon by other devices in earshot. In addition to limiting that type of confusion, the change could allow users to place restrictions on everything from who can use Siri’s search on an unattended iPhone to who is allowed to rent movies from an Apple TV.

Reports: iPhone 8 won’t cost more than $1,000, but launch may be delayed to October or November

Problems with the iPhone 8’s 3D sensors and OLED screen lamination could delay the phone’s launch to October or November, the Economic Daily News reports [via DigiTimes]. While Apple’s new iPhones usually begin shipping in late September/early October, several reports have claimed that Apple’s extensive prototyping and desire to add new features could push production of the device to begin later than usual. This latest claim suggests that the 3D sensors rumored to be bringing depth sensing and facial recognition capabilities to the iPhone 8 have led to “technical issues.”

Apple releases minor iOS 10.3.1 security update

One week after the public release of iOS 10.3, Apple has now pushed out a small iOS 10.3.1 update, noting that it “includes bug fixes and improves the security your iPhone or iPad.” While no details of specific improvements are otherwise listed in any release notes, Apple’s About the security content of iOS 10.3.1 support article suggests that it was pushed out to address a Wi-Fi vulnerability that could allow an “attacker within range ... to execute arbitrary code on the Wi-Fi chip.”

Apple fixed 911 call bug with iOS 10.3 update

Apple’s iOS 10.3 update has solved a vulnerability that allowed iPhones to be tricked into repeatedly dialing 911, The Wall Street Journal reports. Meetkumar Desai was arrested last fall after designing the code, but a link to the code that went viral on Twitter led to pranks causing 911 operators in more than a dozen states to be overwhelmed by accidental 911 calls. The code relied on an iPhone feature that allowed users to place a call simply by pressing a phone number, but the latest update requires users to press a confirmation button before the phone will dial the number. The update will prevent the exploit from being successful even on apps that hadn’t already issued their own fix for the problem.

Barclays predicts True Tone display for all 2017 iPhones, 3D sensors for iPhone 8

The latest investor update from Barclays claims Apple will include True Tone displays in all 2017 iPhone and add new 3D sensors to the iPhone 8 to facial recognition and augmented reality functions, 9to5Mac reports. The researchers said all three of the iPhone models expected to launch later this year will feature the True Tone display first seen in the 9.7” iPad Pro, allowing the devices to use an ambient light sensors to adapt the colors in the display to the light in the room to deliver the best possible color quality. While the OLED screen rumored to be coming in the iPhone 8 will set it apart from the lower-end models, adding True Tone to the full lineup could be a key selling feature in convincing users to upgrade if they’re looking for a reason to justify choosing the iPhone 7s and 7s Plus.

MLB.com At Bat and NHL now allow users to personalize Home Screen icons

One of the lesser-known new features in iOS 10.3 is the ability for third-party apps to offer alternative home screen icons, and today the first major apps have been updated for these new capabilities, reports TechCrunch. Both MLB.com At Bat and NHL now provide the ability for users to change the default home screen icon to reflect their favourite team’s logo. Both apps will prompt the user initially to select an icon to use when first re-entering the app or setting up their favourite teams for the first time, however users can change the icon to another team at any time from the app’s settings. Interestingly, for whatever reason icons don’t yet appear to be available for all teams (sorry, Leafs fans).

Apple pulls over-the-air iOS 10.3 update for iPhone 5, 5c; iOS 10.3.2 seems to end support for them

Apple has pulled back the over-the-air update to iOS 10.3 for iPhone 5 and 5c devices without giving any reason, AppleInsider reports. The update was available for a few hours before mysteriously disappearing, despite there being no noted outcry of users who had tried and failed to install the update on the devices. The update can still be installed through the standard process using iTunes, and seems to function fine on an iPhone 5c.

In a related development, The Apple Post has discovered that the beta version of iOS 10.3.2 appears to end support for devices with 32-bit processors — like the iPhone 5 and 5c. The beta only contains restore images for 64-bit devices, hinting at the possibility that 32-bit devices are about to lose support. Apple announced back in 2014 that new apps or app updates would have to support 64-bit processors, and recent speculation has swirled around iOS 11 ending support for 32-bit devices. A warning dialog discovered by developers working with the iOS 10.3 beta stated that apps that have not been updated to include 64-bit support “will not work with future versions of iOS.” Given the new findings in the iOS 10.3.2 beta, the change could come sooner than expected. If so, the 4th generation iPad would also be unsupported as it features a 32-bit processor.

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