Benny Ling

Monday Morning News

Rumour has it Apple will release an updated iPhone SE in May. The rumour claims that the existing iPhone SE form factor will remain, with perhaps the removal of the headphone jack being the only external indicator that the iPhone SE successor has been updated at all. There are plenty of reasons why the iPhone SE design and size remains popular among purists, but at this point I’m not sure I’d give up the stellar camera or display of the iPhone X.

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Friday Morning News

The latest research note from Ming-Chi Kuo claims this year’s iPhone refresh, which will include a 6.1-inch version of the iPhone. This larger iPhone with LCD display tech would be priced at around US $550 and may even come with dual SIM card slots, which would be a first for iPhones and would presumably require some changes to the UI to allow switching between them.

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Thursday Morning News

As some had suspected and speculated when Apple purchased Texture, the company will be looking to integrate Texture into Apple News as a subscription-based news service. The rumour comes from Bloomberg, who says Apple News will soon have a premium new subscription to add to Apple’s internet software and services offerings, with Bloomberg drawing parallels between the acqusition of Beats which led to Apple Music’s subscription, and the one that will be offered by Apple News in the future, thanks to the acqusition of Texture.

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Tuesday Morning News

A Motherboard report on the iPhone-unlocking capabilities of law enforcement in the US says both police forces and federal agencies now have, or will soon have, the ability to crack locked iPhones. The iPhone-unlocking capability comes thanks to the proliferation of readily-available tools such as the GrayKey iPhone unlocking box, which can bypass normal iPhone passcode restrictions and unlock devices. While local police forces have jumped in and purchased the technology, federal agencies have a little more red tape to deal with when it comes to purchasing equipment for official use.

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Monday Morning News

An internal memo to Apple employees notes that the company caught 29 employees last year leaking information to the press, arresting 12 of those. As re-published by Bloomberg, Apple’s internal memo warns against employees, contractors, or suppliers leaking any kind of information, whether it’s about future Apple products, the Apple software roadmap, or internal meetings, discussions, and memos, saying that leaking affects everyone at Apple.

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Friday Morning News

Bloomberg tells us the uncomfortable truth, or what many had suspected given middling reviews of the HomePod when it was first released. Apple’s smart home speaker just isn’t selling as well as Apple had hoped it would, despite widely-praised audio quality over the competition. It’s hard to say what’s driving the poor sales, whether it’s the high price compared to other products in its category, or lack of Siri smarts, but whatever it is, Apple will need to work on it or end up with warehouses full of the things.

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Thursday Morning News

The Verge has hands-on photos of the Prouduct(RED) iPhone 8 and 8 Plus, and the device looks great. The glossy red from the glass back of the iPhone 8 looks just as good as the matte versions did when iPhones had aluminium backs, although there’s some trick of the light in some of the shots where the Apple logo and iPhone/Product(RED) text looks black when it’s silver. Which is kind of a shame, as a black icon and text would have matched the front of the device. It still looks stunning.

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Tuesday Morning News

Just like that, Apple announced the availability of the special edition Product(RED) iPhone 8 and 8 Plus. It looks great, and the red glass is every bit as vivid as the aluminium versions that we’ve seen before. For the first time, the Product(RED) iPhone also a black-bordered screen on the front, with all previous Product(RED) iPhones having the white-bordered screen. It’s a welcome change, and if the iPhone X wasn’t a thing, then I would strongly consider buying this one. Pre-orders open today, with the device being available in retail stores this Friday.

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Monday Morning News

An internal memo to Virgin Mobile employees claims Apple will release Product(RED) versions of the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus tomorrow. A Product(RED) iPhone X isn’t mentioned at all, so it seems unlikely that Apple will release that in the near future, but I’ll be interested to see how Apple makes the Product(RED) version of the glass-backed iPhone 8 and 8 Plus work — the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus Product(RED) devices looked great, but we’ll see if the glass versions look as good.

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Friday Morning News

Apple’s new iPad how-to page tells you how to do even more with iPad. It’s the new home of a bunch of iPad how-to videos, including such classics as “how to use two apps at once”, “how to work with the powerful new Dock”, as well as new favourites like “how to mark stuff up with Apple Pencil” and “how to edit a photo and erase a stranger”.

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