Monday Morning News
The latest developer and public betas of iOS 11 contain a feature that’s being called by some outlets as a “cop button”. Pressing the sleep/wake switch quickly fives times on a device running the current iOS 11 beta brings up the screen to dial emergency services, but also disables Touch ID until you re-enter your passcode. A passcode is said to be more secure than a fingerprint, but really it’s to stop law enforcement agencies getting into your device.
Speaking of passcodes, a video emerged over the weekend showing off a device capable of guessing numerical passcodes. While it works on the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus (and some models of iPhone 6/6S), cracking passcodes at speed requires the passcode to have been changed very recently, your device not to have been used for more than 10 minutes after the passcode was changed, and obviously, physical access to your device. Apple notes that the particular flaw exploited by this passcode cracking box has been patched in iOS 11.
Meanwhile, someone in the Maccas marketing department is a little too keen for the next iPhone, with an iPhone concept render being used to show off the McDonalds’ mymaccas app. It seems kind of strange that they’d use an image of an unreleased device — if they wanted to appeal to audiences by showing them an image of their app on an iPhone, why not use an iPhone people would recognise?
Photos of an unidentified PCB have been posted to Weibo, and the Apple rumour mill is generally agrees that it’s too large to be an internal part of the next iPhone, but could be some kind of controller for the iPhone’s wireless charging dock. I’m not so sure though, as the near-circular shape of the part makes it look suspiciously HomePod-shaped.
Apple has quietly removed some colour options for iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch accessories. The Japanese Apple Online Store has seen nine iPhone 7 cases, 18 iPad cases, and 13 iPad Smart Covers removed, with 12 Apple Watch Sport bands, seven nylon bands, and some Nike and Hermés accessories also getting the cut, according to AppleInsider. The current reason for their removal is unknown, although it’s said Apple are on the verge of introducing new colour options.
Apple’s latest court appearance has them arguing that they’re not responsible for iPhone-related distracted driving accidents. It’s interesting that the class action lawsuit claims Apple chose profit over customer safety by not implementing a lock out when behind the wheel, seeing as Do Not Disturb while Driving is going to be a feature in iOS 11, but Apple says it’s not their fault if a driver chooses to use an inherently safe iPhone when driving.
BuzzFeed has published Apple CEO Tim Cook’s email to employees about troubling events in Charlottesville. In addition to writing that hate is a cancer and disagreeing with the US President, Cook also says Apple will be donating US $1 million each to the Southern Poverty Law Centre and the Anti-Defamation League.
ITunes U content is moving to Apple Podcasts. When iTunes 12.7 is released in the coming weeks, Apple will automatically be migrating iTunes U collections to the Podcasts section of the iTunes Store, and iTunes U content will only be available on iOS devices with the removal of the iTunes U content type from iTunes.
MacStories has a review of Transmit 5. It’s more than just an app you can use for (S)FTP, as Transmit’s wide range of services it can connect to makes for some interesting possibilities when it comes to syncing local and remote files.
Apple’s latest videos on its YouTube channel show you how to do more with iPad and iOS 11. There’s a couple of how-tos about doing stuff with the brand new dock, using the Files app, and marking up documents with Apple Pencil, but here’s hoping we see the public release of iOS 11 sometime within the next few weeks.