Monday Morning News
It was a pretty crazy week for Apple security this week, leading up to the somewhat unexpected, eyebrow-raising weekend release of iOS 11.2. The release was supposed to include support for Apple Pay Cash, a US-only personal payments system, but despite previous betas including the feature, it seems to have been turned off for the public release, perhaps to be re-enabled sometime this week when iOS 11.2 was originally supposed to be released. Either way, there’s a bunch of other minor changes in the release, besides bug fixes.
One of the issues fixed by iOS 11.2 is the notification bug which caused respring loops. There was no clear consensus on what caused the issue, but repeating local notifications appeared to be the culprit, according to the thread on Reddit about the issue. It’s unknown whether Apple knew if the issue was present before the clocks started hitting 12:15am on December 2, but either way, it was a very strange bug that was fixed with iOS 11.2.
The Elcomsoft blog points out changes to iOS security in iOS 11 which mean that the only real barrier to device security is the device passcode. It seems to be a classic case of Apple removing security in the name of convenience, with encrypted iTunes backups able to be defeated by resetting all the settings on the device, along with many other things that shouldn’t really be possible with just a device passcode — including changing an Apple ID password.
Even if you’ve manually installed the macOS update to fix an issue where root accounts could be enabled with a blank password, Wired discovered that if you upgrade to macOS 10.13.1, you re-open the security vulnerability. It seems like a bit of an oversight, but it’s not all bad — Macs running macOS 10.13.1 will install the update automatically, with no user intervention required.
An email from Apple SVP of Software Engineering Craig Federighi says Face ID was designed to be used with a single face. It’s a big change from the multi-digit compatibility offered by Touch ID, although in that case Federighi clarifies that multi-user Touch ID was a fringe benefit of supporting multiple fingers. The chances of multi-face Face ID just got smaller.
A short profile of Apple Music chief Jimmy Iovine from Billboard says he’s still thinking about problems affecting the music industry. One would think that’s part of his role and the position he holds within the music industry, but his warning against the profitability of streaming should serve as a warning to everyone lauding the benefits of streaming.
AppleInsider has a bunch of photos of the recently revamped Brooklyn Apple Store. The store features a custom floor which isolates the building from the rest of the environment, including sound-absorbing wooden panels to further dampen any interruptions from the nearby subway intersection.
The Halide blog tells us about the power of the iPhone X and the benefits of shooting RAW. While the photos that come out of the camera are pretty impressive when compared to their RAW counterparts, the power of RAW is that you can make your own adjustments to the photo after the fact with minimal quality loss.
FiftyThree released a new app, and a major update to one of their existing ones. Their well-known Paper app has also been updated, with version 4.0 being “entirely rebuilt” with a new look and feel, personal notebooks, and support for the iOS 11 Split View. FiftyThree’s new app Paste, on the other hand, is a collaborative presentation deck building app, capable of working with images, videos, documents, and links.
New ads from Apple tell us about the amazing capabilities of the Apple Watch Series 3, especially when it comes to fitness features and mobile data support. There’s a strong suggestion that you can give or receive an Apple Watch as a gift, too.