News | iLounge

News

Browse News by Category:

Belkin unveils 3.5mm audio cable with Lightning connector

Belkin has released a new option for users of modern iPhones who need to connect to traditional audio jacks. The 3.5 mm Audio Cable With Lightning Connector builds on last year’s 3.5mm Audio + Charge RockStar by providing a single-wire solution that terminates in a male 3.5mm audio connector suitable for plugging into a home or car stereo system. The MFi-certified cable is available in both three-foot and six-foot versions, priced at $29.99 and $34.99, respectively.

Apple sends out media invites for June 4 Keynote at WWDC 2018

Apple has sent out press invites for the keynote at its annual Worldwide Developers Conference, being held from June 4 – 9, 2018 in San Jose, CA. As usual, the keynote is scheduled to open the conference on June 5, and will likely see Apple unveil major new versions of iOS, tvOS, watchOS, and macOS, with developer preview editions to follow shortly thereafter. Although it’s never a certainty whether Apple will choose to announce hardware during the developer-focused event, Apple choose to unveil two new iPad Pro models last year, and recent reports have suggested that Apple may choose to debut this year’s iPad Pro model — likely including Face ID — at this year’s Keynote. [via MacRumors]

Apple drops price on USB-C to Lightning Cable

In a somewhat unusual move, Apple has quietly lowered the price on its standard one-meter USB-C to Lightning Cable, lowering it from its original $25 asking price down to $19, putting it at the same price as its standard Lightning to USB Cable, further fuelling recent rumors that this year’s iPhone models will be shipping with USB-C chargers.

TeenSafe parental monitoring service leaks thousands of childrens’ passwords

A service designed to help parents monitor their childrens’ internet activity on iPhone and Andorid devices has leaked thousands of users’ passwords, ZDNet reports. The service, TeenSafe, purports to be a “secure” monitoring app for both iOS and Android designed to allow parents to view their child’s text message conversations, monitor who they’re calling, accessing their location and web browsing history, and more. It appears, however, that for iOS devices the service relies on parents supplying their childrens’ Apple ID passwords, which are stored on the company’s servers, possibly in order to access iCloud data. However, a U.K. based security researcher, Robert Wiggins, discovered last week that TeenSafe had actually left one or more of its servers unprotected and accessible by anyone without even a password requirement.

Coach releases new summer lineup of Apple Watch bands

Coach has released a new summer lineup of Apple Watch bands, along with refreshing the colors of some of its existing bands, Haute Écriture reports. New band options include the Strap with Heart Appliqué in Dusty Rose (light pink), the Strap in Signature Canvas in Kahki (light brown), and the Apple Watch Strap in Saddle (brown), while Coach has also updated its Strap with Tea Rose in a new Chambray (light blue) design, its Strap with Prints in a new Black Floral design (black with blue flowers), and added a Denim blue option to its original crocodile-print Apple Watch Strap, while Saddle version is a new band design with a triangular pattern and a lower price. [via 9to5Mac]

App creators unite, form ‘Developers Union’ to call for App Store changes

A group of developers have joined forces, penning an open letter asking Apple to commit to making certain key changes to the App Store. Calling themselves The Developers Union, the group is specifically pushing for Apple to allow free trials for all apps in both the iOS and Mac App Stores by July 2019.

We believe that people who create great software should be able to make a living doing it. So we created The Developers Union to advocate for sustainability in the App Store.

Today, we are asking Apple to publicly commit — by the tenth anniversary of the App Store this July — to allowing free trials for all apps in the App Stores before July 2019. After that, we’ll start advocating for a more reasonable revenue cut and other community-driven, developer-friendly changes.

 

Reporter reveals how little data Apple collects on users

A new report by ZDNet’s Zack Whittaker reveals just how little information Apple actually collects on customers in comparison to companies such as Facebook and Google. In the wake of the recent Cambridge Analytica scandal, Whittaker decided to ask Apple for a full disclosure on all of the data that the company had collected on him since 2010 when he first became an Apple customer. While it took Apple a little over a week to respond with the data, Whittaker was surprised at how little was actually there — the resulting data set consisted of two dozen Excel spreadsheets totalling about 5 MB in size.

Spring Collection Apple Watch bands starting to sell out

Back in March Apple announced a new “Spring Collection” of Apple Watch bands in new styles and vibrant colors to allow Apple Watch users to spruce up the look of their wrist for springtime. It appears, however, that the new bands may have been a limited run, as MacRumors now reports that some of the more popular options are dwindling in availability, with some now showing as completely sold out on Apple’s online store, although many may still be available at retail stores. Customers who may still be looking for the special edition colors such as Electric Blue, Soft Pink, Denim Blue, Lemonade, or Red Raspberry may want to place an order soon.

Apple estimated to have sold 600,000 HomePods during Q1 2018

A new report by Strategy Analytics estimates that Apple 600,000 HomePod speakers during the first quarter of 2018, giving it six percent of the global smart speaker market, although Apple’s new smart speaker still has a long way to go to catch up to rivals Amazon and Google, which shipped 4 million and 2.4 million units, respectively, collectively account for a 70 percent share of the market.

Sixth iOS 11.4 beta appears

Only three days after Apple pushed out a fifth beta of iOS 11.4, a sixth iteration has just appeared, with the increasing frequency suggesting a final iOS 11.4 release may be just around the corner. The sixth beta offers no significant changes from the last version, and shows only a small change in build number 15F5079a versus 15F5077a, indicating that it’s probably mostly about polishing and fixing relatively minor bugs at this point.

Apple’s AirPort Base Station stock dwindling

Apple’s stock of AirPort base stations is beginning to sell out, MacRumors reports, following the company’s formal exit from the Wi-FI router business last month. MacRumors notes that the AirPort Extreme is already being listed as “sold out” on Apple’s online store in the U.S., although it remains available in limited quantities in other countries, such as Australia, Canada, Japan, and Singapore. The smaller AirPort Express and storage-equipped AirPort Time Capsule models still remain in stock online in several countries, although the entire AirPort lineup has disappeared entirely from Apple’s online store in several European countries. Apple stated last month that its AirPort products will continue to be sold “while supplies last” although nothing was said about what those supply levels are.

Apple’s reputation falling behind in China

The perception of Apple in China is starting to fall behind that of domestic smartphone makers like Huawei, according to a new survey reported by the South China Morning Post. Conducted by an independent research company, Reputation Institute, the survey reveals a decline in Apple’s reputation among Chinese consumers, placing the company in 12th place, in a ranking of 155 companies, both Chinese and multinational. Huawei placed second overall, while Google ranked in fourth place. According to the survey, many Chinese consumers also believed that Huawei “stands out from the crowd” and is more “genuine” than Apple. Approximately 30,000 Chinese consumers were polled in the survey, which includes 280 companies, of which only the top 155 made the final list. For the most part, the survey indicated a shift toward more home-grown Chinese brands, although the Chinese domestic search engine, Baidu, ranked far behind Google, landing in the 125th spot, while Intel, Rolex, Nokia, and Lufthansa all ranked in the top 10, with Intel taking first place. [via iPhone in Canada]

 

Apple teams up with educators to bring Everyone Can Code to blind and deaf students

Apple has announced that it is now teaming up with leading educators to bring its Everyone Can Code program to schools for blind and deaf communities in the U.S. Starting this fall, the company plans to bring accessible coding to schools supporting students with vision, hearing, or other assistive needs, working with the schools to tailor the lessons to leverage Apple’s accessibility technology to augment the curricula as needed, including providing additional tools and resources like tactile maps for use by non-visual learners.

Twitter extends API shutdown deadline to August, third-party apps may still lose functionality

Twitter has announced that it will delay its controversial API changes until August 16, providing developers of third-party twitter clients with more time to update their apps. A coalition of Twitter developers raised a public protest against the upcoming changes last month, noting that even thought Twitter had announced a new Account Activity API in April 2017, the company had yet to actually make the new API available to developers even a year later, despite a looming shutdown of the legacy APIs on June 19, 2018. Today, Twitter announced the general availability of the new Account Activity API that developers have been waiting for, while also extending the deadline to allow developers to actually take advantage of it, noting that “Site Streams, User Streams, and legacy Direct Message endpoints, originally slated for retirement on June 19th 2018, will be deprecated on Wednesday August 16, 2018 which provides 3 months from today’s release of the Account Activity API for migration.”

Another report suggests 2018 iPhones will ship with faster charging adapters, includes renders

A new report from ChargerLab backs up rumours from earlier this month that Apple plans to include USB-C Fast Charge power adapters with at least some of this year’s iPhone models. Citing sources from “inside production lines,” the report confirms that it will be an 18-watt USB-C to Lightning plug, and includes renders of a European version of the adapter. The new design also appears to be in line with the earlier Weibo report that the charger would see a change from the traditional square shape used since the iPhone 3G, making it more convenient and portable. The iPhone has supported at least 2.1-amp charging since 2014, but despite this, Apple has continued to bundle only the original anemic one-amp adapter in every box, up to and including last year’s fast-charge-capable iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone X models.

Berkshire Hathaway moves into second place among Apple shareholders

Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway has confirmed in a recent regulatory filing that it is now Apple’s second-largest shareholder, Reuters reports. The filing notes that Berkshire invested $14.8 billion more in equities during the last quarter, most of which went to Apple, increasing its stake in the company to 239.6 shares valued at more than $40 billion — or roughly five percent of Apple stock. According to Reuters, this moves Berkshire Hathaway into second place among Apple investors, passing BlackRock and trailing behind Vanguard Group. Buffett recently told shareholders at Berkshire’s annual meeting that he might but more Apple stock for the right price, and two days later declared to CNBC that he’d “love to own 100 percent” of Apple.

The new Google News lands on the App Store

Google’s overhauled News app is now available on the App Store. Originally unveiled at Google’s I/O conference last week, the new Google News features not only a redesigned user interface that promises “an improved reading experience,” but also new AI-powered machine learning to try and create a personalized news feed for each user, using algorithms that try to stay on top of breaking news and organize it into more relevant storylines, allowing users to more easily sift through the news and focus on the topics they’re interested in. The new Google News app — which replaces Google’s former Play Newsstand app — appears to borrow some of its UI concepts from Apple News; for example, a new “Your briefing” section provides an overview of user-tailored content in one place, mixing headlines, local news, and breaking developments on a focused set of topics. “Full coverage” allows users to dig deeper on a given story, highlighting different perspectives and providing a timeline of key events and other relevant info.

Mercedes unveils lineup of branded iPhone accessories

Mercedes has launched a new line of branded iPhone accessories, including a number of cases and even a Lightning cable. CarScoops reports on the new lineup, which features cases for the iPhone 7/8, iPhone 7/8 Plus, and iPhone X made from materials such as liquid silicone, genuine leather, and carbon fibre variations. Silicon cases include a microfiber inner liner and are available in navy blue, black, red, or beige, while the leather versions use a perforated design in walnut brown, Marrakech, black, red, crystal grey or white. Other variations include carbon fiber and aluminum and carbon fiber and smooth leather versions. A dual-headed Lightning/Micro-USB to USB cable is also available sporting the Mercedes-Benz name on the Lightning end and the logo on the USB end. [via 9to5Mac]

Apple now has the second-largest self-driving car test fleet in California

Apple is once again expanding its self-driving car fleet in California, according to new numbers obtained from the California DMV by macReports. According to the information, Apple now has 55 vehicles and 83 drivers listed on its permit for testing autonomous vehicles, adding ten more vehicles since March to a program that began with only three vehicles last spring. This also notably puts Apple in second place for the number of self-driving cars behind tested, behind GM Cruise which currently has 104 vehicles on the road. macReports also notes that the California DMV has advised them that Apple has not yet applied for a driverless testing permit, a new type of permit that the department began issuing last month. [via Macrumors]

Apple releases fifth betas for iOS 11.4, tvOS 11.4, and watchOS 4.3.1

Apple has just posted a fifth set of developer betas for iOS 11.4, tvOS 11.4, and watchOS 4.3.1, again only a week after the fourth round of betas went out. Unsurprisingly, the release notes at this point list only extremely minor changes since the last beta, and it remains unclear whether iOS 11.4 and tvOS 11.4 will in fact incorporate AirPlay 2, which also made a brief appearance in the iOS 11.3 betas earlier this year before being removed before the final release, a fate similar to that of Messages in iCloud, which is still listed in the release notes as being included “for testing and evaluation purposes.”

Sign up for the iLounge Weekly Newsletter

iLounge is an independent resource for all things iPod, iPhone, iPad, and beyond.
iPod, iPhone, iPad, iTunes, Apple TV, Mac, and the Apple logo are trademarks of Apple Inc.
iLounge is © 2001 - 2018 iLounge, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Terms of Use | Privacy Policy

/* * * APPLE AFFILIATE LINK MAKER * * */