Archive for the ‘iOS’ Category

Qualcomm says a Chinese court has banned sales of older iPhones nationwide

December 10th, 2018
A young woman is impressed by something on her smartphone.

Enlarge / A Chinese woman reacts while setting up the facial recognition feature on her iPhone X inside an Apple showroom in Beijing in 2017. Qualcomm says a Chinese court has banned iPhone X sales in China. (credit: FRED DUFOUR/AFP/Getty Images)

Qualcomm says it has scored an important victory in its long-running global patent battle with Apple over patent rights. According to Qualcomm, a Chinese court ruled that several recent iPhone models infringe multiple Qualcomm software patents and has ordered a ban on iPhone sales. Apple says it has already appealed the ruling.

The ruling occurred on November 30, but Qualcomm announced the ruling today.

Apple has downplayed the ruling's significance, telling media outlets that the ban has not yet taken effect and that it only applies to older versions of iOS software, not to the current version, iOS 12. The ruling also only applies to older iPhone models—including the iPhone 8 and iPhone X—but not to the iPhone XS and XR.

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Posted in apple, iOS, iphone, Policy, Qualcomm, Tech | Comments (0)

Apple releases iOS 12.1.1, macOS Mojave 10.14.2, and tvOS 12.1.1

December 5th, 2018
The 2018, 12.9-inch iPad Pro with the Smart Keyboard Folio.

Enlarge / The 2018, 12.9-inch iPad Pro with the Smart Keyboard Folio. (credit: Samuel Axon)

Apple simultaneously released minor software updates for iPhones, iPads, Macs, and Apple TV boxes today with iOS 12.1.1, macOS Mojave 10.14.2, and tvOS 12.1.1.

The focus is on bug fixes and security, so none of them introduce major new features. But iOS comes closest by expanding the haptic touch feature on iPhone XR to notification previews, making it possible to hide the sidebar in the iPad's news app while in landscape orientation, and by bringing a couple of improvements to FaceTime—namely, the ability to capture Live Photos (those brief animated pictures) from a two-person FaceTime call and a one-tap way to flip between the rear and front cameras during a call.

Just note that to take a Live Photo during a FaceTime call, the person on the other end has to have the feature enabled. The toggle is located in the FaceTime panel in the Settings app.

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Posted in apple, Apple TV, apple tv 4k, iOS, iOS 12.1.1, Mac, MacOS, macOS Mojave, macOS Mojave 10.14.2, operating system, Tech, tvos, tvOS 12.1.1 | Comments (0)

iOS apps used Touch ID feature to trick users into paying hefty fees

December 3rd, 2018
Images displayed by the Fitness Balance app in Apple's App Store.

Enlarge / Images displayed by the Fitness Balance app in Apple's App Store. (credit: Eset)

Apple’s App Store has given the boot to two highly rated apps that abused the iOS Touch ID feature in an attempt to swindle users out of sums of more than $100, users on Reddit reported over the weekend.

The offending “Fitness Balance app” and “Calories Tracker app” promised to calculate body mass index, monitor calorie intake, and provide other health-related services. With no advanced warning, according to Reddit posts here and here, the apps charged users fees of $99.99, $119, or 139 Euros, depending on the country of the user. Users who had a credit or debit card connected to their Apple account were immediately billed.

The scam worked by displaying a message as soon as the app was opened. It told users to scan their fingerprint to view a calorie tracker or receive another personal service. When users complied, the apps displayed a popup window that said they had been charged a fee. Less than two seconds later, the popup disappeared, but by then it was too late for many users. Anyone with a card linked to their Apple account was already charged.

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Posted in App Store, apple, Biz & IT, fingerprint, iOS, touch id | Comments (0)

Apple to replace unresponsive iPhone X touchscreens for free

November 12th, 2018
Apple to replace unresponsive iPhone X touchscreens for free

Enlarge (credit: Samuel Axon)

If you've had problems with the touch responsiveness of your iPhone X's display, you may be in luck. According to a support document, Apple identified a problem with some iPhone X devices that may cause a component of the display module to fail. The company has now launched a program to replace affected screens for free.

Apple claims that failed display components have caused touch response issues on some iPhone X devices. Part, or all, of the affected displays may not respond to touch input, or, in some cases, they may only respond intermittently. In other instances, displays react to touch even when they have not been touched.

Under the repair program, users can go to Apple or to an authorized service provider to get an iPhone X examined. If they verify that the device is eligible for the repair, the display module will be replaced free of charge.

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Posted in apple, iOS, iPhone X, repair program, Smartphone, Tech, touchscreen | Comments (0)

2018 iPad Pro review: “What’s a computer?”

November 7th, 2018

Samuel Axon

Early this year, Apple ran an ad that featured a young girl using an iPad as her primary computing device. An older woman asked the girl a question about her computer, and she responded, "What's a computer?"

The ad was widely mocked. For starters, an iPad is a computer. But also, the hypothetical future when kids don't even know what a desktop or laptop are seems very distant at best. Yes, tablets and smartphones have replaced laptops and desktops among large numbers of young people for personal uses like social media, Web browsing, and games. But despite some high school students who sometimes write their college papers on their smartphones, mobile devices are still not where the real work gets done. Real work is done on a laptop or desktop.

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Posted in 2018 iPad Pro, A12X, apple, apple pencil, Apple Smart Keyboard Folio, Features, Gadgetology, iOS, ipad pro, Tech | Comments (0)

iPhone XR review: Keeping compromises to a minimum

November 5th, 2018

Samuel Axon

Steve Jobs famously believed the devices his company produced would bring technology to the masses, but he was rarely willing to make the compromises necessary to bring that vision to fruition. Apple has only sometimes released products that were priced for everyone.

That trend continued in late September with the release of the flagship iPhone XS, a compelling, envelope-pushing product that is nonetheless priced out of range for many consumers. Enter the iPhone XR, a close sibling to the XS that trades the latter’s expensive OLED display for an LCD and a dual-camera system for a single camera among other things—all to bring the price down just enough so more people can buy it.

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Posted in apple, Features, Gadgetology, iOS, iOS 12, iphone, iPhone XR, Liquid Retina, Smart HDR, Tech | Comments (0)

While iPhone sales remain stagnant, Apple services hit $10 billion in revenue

November 1st, 2018
One of several styled Apple logos associated with the October 30 event.

Enlarge / One of several styled Apple logos associated with the October 30 event. (credit: Apple)

Apple announced on its earnings call today that it had surpassed its revenue estimates for Q4 2018. The iPhone maker boasted $62.9 billion in revenue, slightly more than the $60-62 billion it previously estimated, as well as $14.1 billion in profit, up from $11.5 billion in the previous quarter.

"We're thrilled to report another record-breaking quarter that caps a tremendous fiscal 2018, the year in which we shipped our two billionth iOS device, celebrated the 10th anniversary of the App Store, and achieved the strongest revenue and earnings in Apple's history,” Apple CEO Tim Cook said in a statement.

Apple sold 46.8 million iPhones, 9.6 million iPads, and 5.2 million Macs in the final quarter of 2018. While that represents a 14 percent increase in iPhone sales when compared to last quarter, it's about the same number of iPhones sold this time last year. However, year-over-year revenue from iPhone sales was up by 29 percent, thanks to the increase in iPhone prices.

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Posted in apple, iOS, ipad, iphone, Mac, MacOS, Q4 2018, quarterly earnings, Tech | Comments (0)

Helium implicated in weird iPhone malfunctions

October 31st, 2018
Helium-filled balloons.

Enlarge / Helium-filled balloons. (credit: Warren Rohner)

Reddit user harritaco discovered something rather unusual about the iOS devices used at their place of work. iPhones and Apple Watches stopped working unexpectedly, completely locking up and recovering only days later, sometimes suffering long-term harm.

The failures appeared to coincide with the installation of a new MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) machine. MRIs use powerful magnetic fields and helium-cooled superconductors, and something about the presence of this new machine was upsetting the Apple hardware. That magnets can be a problem for electronic devices is no big surprise—they can damage magnetic media, confuse compasses, and induce electric currents in harmful ways—but surprisingly, it's not the magnets that seem to be the problem this time—it's the helium.

The iPhone user guide warns that proximity to helium can impair functionality and that to recover, devices should be left to air out for a week or so in an environment far away from the rogue helium. Harritaco discovered that, during installation of the MRI machine, some 120 litres of liquid helium leaked and vented into the environment. This created a relatively high helium concentration, and any Apple hardware exposed to that helium stopped working.

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Posted in apple, Helium, iOS, iphone, science, Tech | Comments (0)

What Apple might announce at its October 30 “special event” in Brooklyn

October 26th, 2018
The 10.5-inch (left) and 9.7-inch iPad Pros.

Enlarge / The 10.5-inch (left) and 9.7-inch iPad Pros. (credit: Andrew Cunningham)

This coming Tuesday, Apple will host its second live product announcement even of the fall. While September's event focused on three new iPhone models and an updated Apple Watch, we expect this event to include updates to the iPad Pro that would add new power user features and bring the device closer in design to the company's latest iPhones. We wouldn't be surprised to see some new Macs, too.

The event will take place at the Howard Gilman Opera House and Brooklyn Academy of Music. The last event was at Apple's headquarters in Cupertino, but it's not unusual for the company to branch out to new locations that fit the theme of the products being introduced. For example, the company introduced its education-targeted iPads at a school in Chicago earlier this year.

To that point, creative work seems to be the implied focus of the products coming this week. There's the venue, yes, but Apple also accompanied members of the press' invitation with the words "there's more in the making" and a series of artists' renditions of its logos in various styles, pictured here.

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Posted in apple, CPU, iOS, ipad, ipad pro, Mac, Mac mini, Macbook, MacBook Air, Marzipan, Tech | Comments (0)

Apple says glossy iPhone XS selfies were a bug, promises a fix in iOS 12.1

October 24th, 2018
The notch on the new iPhone.

Enlarge / The notch and front-facing camera on the new iPhone. (credit: Samuel Axon)

When we reviewed the iPhone XS and XS Max, we found a number of small things to quibble about in our generally positive review. Among them was the fact that Apple's self-styled "computational photography" approach involves the software doctoring the photos you take in ways that are not transparent to you and that may not produce the effect you want. That issue was at the heart of a minor scandal surrounding the phone's launch that some dubbed "Beautygate."

Users who took selfies with the front-facing camera found that the resulting images looked a little bit glossed over. Skin was unrealistically smooth, with blemishes and details missing—similar to what you'd see with a beauty filter. Some users took to forums to speculate that Apple did this deliberately because these kinds of filters are popular in one of its largest markets (China) and in social messaging apps like Snapchat.

However, Apple has told The Verge that the behavior is in fact a bug and that a fix is coming in iOS 12.1.

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Posted in iOS, iOS 12, iOS 12.1, iphone, iPhone Xs, iPhone Xs Max, selfies, Smart HDR, Tech | Comments (0)