Archive for the ‘apple’ Category

iOS 14.4 and iPadOS 14.4 hit supported devices today

January 26th, 2021
The 2020 iPad Air—one of several devices supported by today's new software releases.

Enlarge / The 2020 iPad Air—one of several devices supported by today's new software releases. (credit: Samuel Axon)

Today, Apple began rolling out iOS 14.4 and iPadOS 14.4 to supported iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch devices. The company also pushed watchOS 7.3 to Apple Watches and tvOS 14.4 to Apple TVs.

iOS 14.4/iPadOS 14.4 is a somewhat small feature update. New additions in the release notes include the ability to read smaller QR codes with the iPhone cameras, notifications to tell users "when the camera of your iPhone is unable to be verified as a new, genuine Apple camera," and a number of bug fixes.

Here are Apple's full iOS 14.4 release notes:

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Posted in apple, apple watch, HomePod, iOS, iOS 14, iOS 14.4, ipad, iPadOS, iPadOS 14, iPadOS 14.4, iphone, iPod touch, Tech, tvos, tvOS 14, tvOS 14.4, watchos, watchOS 7, watchOS 7.3 | Comments (0)

Apple’s long-time hardware lead steps down to work on mysterious “new project”

January 26th, 2021

Apple announced Tuesday that its longtime SVP of hardware engineering, Dan Riccio, will depart his current role and assume a new one focused entirely on a "new project." Riccio had led hardware engineering since 2012. Prior to that role, he led iPad hardware engineering. He will report directly to CEO Tim Cook in his new role.

John Ternus, who has held the title of vice president of hardware engineering since 2001, will step into Riccio's prior role leading the hardware engineering team. Ternus has appeared in recent Apple product announcements, and he was the lead for the iPhone 12, as well as a key team leader on AirPods, every iPad, and the M1 transition.

As is common with announcements like this, there are statements from key figures at Apple about it. Starting with Cook:

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Posted in apple, Dan Riccio, John Ternus, Tech | Comments (0)

Not just MagSafe: Apple reminds users not to hold iPhones near pacemakers

January 25th, 2021

This week, Apple published clarifications to its support documents to address consumer concern that, because of the presence of the MagSafe magnet system in new iPhones, the iPhone 12 and its 2020 peers are particularly unsafe to hold in close proximity to an Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator (ICD) or pacemaker.

The updated warning from Apple to customers repeats previous statements that keeping any iPhone within six inches of an ICD or pacemaker (or within 15 inches, while charging wirelessly) is unsafe. The warning also claims the iPhone 12 is not specifically more dangerous than other models.

Several weeks back, Heart Rhythm Journal published results of a test wherein it repeatedly found that moving an iPhone 12 with MagSafe close to a patient's ICD interfered with the functioning of that lifesaving device. After that report, tech enthusiasts visited forums, Twitter, and Reddit to spread speculation that the iPhone 12 was particularly dangerous to people with pacemakers because of the introduction of MagSafe.

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Posted in apple, Health, iPhone 12, iphone 12 mini, iPhone 12 Pro, iPhone 12 Pro Max, pacemaker, Tech | Comments (0)

Apple doubles down on Fitness+ with new “Time to Walk” Apple Watch content

January 25th, 2021

Today, Apple launched a new component of its Fitness+ personal health subscription service: "Time to Walk." With it, users who own an Apple Watch can take a tracked walk exercise while listening to stories or inspiring talks from "influential and interesting people."

These talks will be automatically downloaded to users' Apple Watch, provided those users subscribe to Fitness+. When users start listening to one of the 25-40 minute episodes, the Watch will begin tracking a Walk workout. For users in weelchairs, Time to Walk is instead called "Time to Push" and offers up an Outdoor Weelchair Walk Pace workout instead.

The announcement states that "each Time to Walk episode is shaped by the guest’s personal, life-shaping moments and includes lessons learned, meaningful memories, thoughts on purpose and gratitude, moments of levity, and other thought-provoking topics, recorded while walking outside or in locations that are meaningful to them."

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Posted in apple, Apple Fitness+, apple watch, Tech | Comments (0)

Report: The MacBook Air is getting a major redesign, too

January 22nd, 2021
Report: The MacBook Air is getting a major redesign, too


There's been on onslaught of Apple leaks out of business publication Bloomberg over the past week, and the latest goes into a little more detail about an upcoming MacBook Air redesign.

Like the others, the report cites anonymous people familiar with Apple's plans. It claims a newly redesigned MacBook Air (presumably with either Apple's M1 chip for Macs or a successor to that chip) will "be released during the second half of this year at the earliest or in 2022."

But buried in this MacBook Air report is perhaps equally big news for a certain set of Mac users: it claims that Apple plans to reintroduce the SD card slot in new MacBook Pros—a detail that was left out of a story on those computers earlier this week.

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Posted in apple, Bloomberg, Mac, MacBook Air, MagSafe, Tech | Comments (0)

Ubuntu Linux is now running on M1 Macs

January 21st, 2021

For the first time, users of Apple Silicon Macs using Apple's M1 chip—such as the entry-level 13-inch MacBook Pro, Mac mini, and MacBook Air—can now boot in to and natively run Linux.

The vintage at play here is Ubuntu, and the port was developed by Corellium, which otherwise virtualizes iOS and other ARM-based OSes to enable easier security testing. It's worth noting as well that Apple has previously sued the company over said iOS security testing tool. The lawsuit didn't go Apple's way.

Corellium Chief Technology Office Chris Wade announced the culmination of the team's work on Twitter yesterday. And in a blog post on Corellium's website, the team behind the port writes that it was developed in parallel with the group's efforts at "creating a model of the [M1] for our security research part."

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Posted in apple, Apple M1, Apple silicon, corellium, linux, M1, Mac mini, Tech, Ubuntu, USB | Comments (0)

Report: Apple’s VR headset will be a pricey, high-end niche standalone

January 21st, 2021
HTC/Valve Vive VR headset, on a hairy tech journalist

Any excuse to show former Ars UK reporter Seb Anthony excited about a VR headset is a good one. (credit: Sebastian Anthony)

The last time we heard any details about Apple's long-rumored plans in the Virtual/Augmented Reality space, the company was implementing a two-year internal delay from a previously planned 2020 launch. Today, Bloomberg cites "people with knowledge of the matter" in reporting some new supposed details for the standalone Apple VR headset, which Bloomberg suggests could launch in 2022 as a precursor to a more mass-market AR headset.

From a tech design perspective, the most notable detail in the report is that Apple's latest VR prototypes have "removed the space VR gadgets usually reserve for users who need to wear eyeglasses." That could help avoid some of the "ski goggle" bulk usually associated with the "eyebox" on most current headsets. For users with poor eyesight, the prototype apparently utilizes "custom prescription lenses" in the headset itself, according to Bloomberg's unnamed sources.

Bloomberg also reports that the Apple headset prototype currently sports a fabric exterior to reduce weight (shades of Google's defunct Daydream VR there) and a fan to help cool internal processors that reportedly "beat the performance of Apple’s M1 Mac processors." Some prototypes also reportedly include built-in hand-tracking and the ability to type on a virtual keyboard through a custom-built OS.

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Posted in apple, Gaming & Culture, oculus, virtual reality, VR | Comments (0)

iFixit tears down Apple’s $550 AirPods Max headphones

January 19th, 2021

As is a custom at this point, online repair kit and tool vendor iFixit tore down one of the latest Apple products and assessed its repairability. In this case, the product is the ultra-expensive ($550) AirPods Max over-ear noise-canceling headphones.

Most of the interior components are about what you'd expect in a high-end pair of wireless headphones, but the machinery is highly intricate, and there are many, many screws.

iFixit found that the Lightning port is particularly difficult—though not impossible—to reach, which is unfortunate, given that this is one of the parts most likely to fail. The part is also critical to the device's ability to function, since it's the charging port.

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Posted in airpods, AirPods Max, apple, headphones, iFixit, Tech | Comments (0)

Report: New MacBook Pro models will arrive this year with MagSafe, M1 successor [Updated]

January 15th, 2021
A 16-inch MacBook Pro with the lid closed

Enlarge / This is the 16-inch MacBook Pro as it's being sold now. According to today's report, the new one will generally look quite similar. (credit: Samuel Axon)

According to a report in Bloomberg, Apple plans to launch new versions of its MacBook Pro laptops "around the middle of the year," and these machines will feature speed and display enhancements, as well as a return of the MagSafe charging design seen in MacBook computers several generations ago.

Citing "a person with knowledge of the plans," the Bloomberg story claims that Apple's 13-inch MacBook Pro will get a 14-inch successor, just as the 15-inch MacBook Pro became a 16-inch model when the screen bezel was reduced to allow more screen real estate in a similarly sized chassis.

Both the 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro are slated for the middle of the year and will incorporate Apple's custom silicon. The company first introduced its own silicon with the M1 chip included in November refreshes of the low-end 13-inch MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, and Mac mini. The new machines described today would have a successor to Apple's M1 chip with more CPU cores and "enhanced graphics."

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Posted in 13-inch MacBook Pro, 14-inch MacBook Pro, 16-inch MacBook Pro, apple, Bloomberg, MacBook Pro, MagSafe, Mark Gurman, Tech, Touch Bar | Comments (0)

PC sales finally saw big growth in 2020 after years of steady decline

January 14th, 2021
A promotional shot for Lenovo's ThinkPad X1 Titanium Yoga laptop, one of the new 2021 laptops meant to capitalize on growing traditional PC sales.

Enlarge / A promotional shot for Lenovo's ThinkPad X1 Titanium Yoga laptop, one of the new 2021 laptops meant to capitalize on growing traditional PC sales. (credit: Lenovo)

During the Consumer Electronics Show this week, research firm IDC released a report on worldwide traditional PC sales in 2020, and it tells a rosier story than we've been used to in recent years. In the fourth quarter of 2020, PC shipments grew 26.1% over the same period last year.

That means 13.1% year-over-year growth overall, and the best year and month or PC sales in quite some time. In total, 91.6 million traditional PCs were shipped in the fourth quarter of 2020. "Traditional PCs" in IDC's report include systems like desktops, laptops, and work stations. For years, sales of these kinds of computers were declining at worst or growing negligibly at best even as other, newer computing gadget categories like smartphones, smart speakers, and tablets grew relatively rapidly.

IDC notes that the last time the market saw this kind of growth was way back in 2010, when modern multitouch smartphones were still building momentum and Apple's very first iPad had only just launched.

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Posted in Acer, apple, CES2021, dell, Desktops, HP, IDC, Laptops, Lenovo, notebooks, pc, Tech, workstations | Comments (0)