Friday Morning News
Apple’s response to shareholders claiming the company needed to do more to address young children getting addicted to iPhones says “it has always looked out for kids”. The company’s statement to Reuters said that it had included software to place restrictions on the type of apps, movies, games, and other content children can access since 2008, with Apple also saying that it thinks deeply about how its products are used and the impact they have on users and the people around them.
Indeed, Apple’s new Families sub-page serves as a more marketable response to the recent outcry of kids getting addicted to technology. The Families page on the Apple website lists all the ways Apple’s software and services allow parents to control the kinds of content their children can access, either by setting up iOS-wide restrictions, requiring your explicit permission for app and in-app purchases, and limiting what they can see on the internet (to a degree). Plus, there’s all the positive ways technology impacts your family that people seem to be overlooking, too.
The French government is taking Apple and Google to court over abusive trade practices, which is mostly concerned with how the two companies treat developers creating apps for their respective platforms. Specifically, France seems to think non-negotiable commissions and contract terms are developer-hostile. While there were flaws in the French Finance Minister’s argument, Apple has said that it shares a working relationship with tens of thousands of developers, who have collectively earned over 1 billion Euros on the App Store.
Apple manufacturing partner Winstron was recently caught using unauthorised components in the manufacture of iPhone 8 Plus devices, with Apple reportedly ordering the company to halt production for two weeks while the issue was investigated. Winstron claims there was no production halt, and the report is detailed enough to specify that fake waterproofing components were used.
Users of iOS devices in Iran are now unable to access the App Store. Bleeping Computer reports Iranian iOS owners being unable to access the App Store, with unconfirmed speculation claiming it appears to be an IP-based ban put in place by Apple themselves. Outlets are quick to note that Apple previously removed all Iranian-developed apps from the App Store back in August 2017, following US-imposed economic sanctions.
A sketchy video shows off what looks like an iPhone SE successor with the distinctive iPhone X notch, edge-to-edge display, and vertically-aligned dual rear cameras. The rest of the phone looks like the iPhone SE — metal back with camfered edges and straight sides — but there’s enough evidence being presented to throw serious doubt on the video, with many possible explanations of the device that looks like an iPhone X, but with some iPhone SE design aspects.
The GrayKey iPhone unlocking box has been shown off in photos, with further details about how it works also being revealed. There doesn’t seem to be any kind of technical information about how the GrayKey can crack iPhone passcodes and allow full unencrypted access to the device, but with a price starting at $15,000 for a tethered, geo-fenced version, I can’t imagine that would be within the reach of the merely curious. Apple, on the other hand, probably purchased a few.
David Smith took a look at app analytics to tell us about Apple Watch adoption rates. The Apple Watch Series 0 continues to fall in popularity, accounting for under 25% of Pedometer++ users, while the Series 3 has just overtaken the Series 2 as the most popular model (again, amongst Pedometer++ users). Also interesting is the 42mm:38mm split, currently sitting at about 60:40, while LTE/non-LTE is a little more even at 50:50.
HeartMonitor is a new app from Zach Simone, which aims to constantly track heart rate during “sessions” of activity. The advantage of this is that you don’t have to start an active workout, contributing even less to your Activity rings, and since Apple Watch battery life is now good enough to constantly track heart rate without draining the battery, HeartMonitor seems like a good, useful app.
Over at Six Colors, Jason Snell says he’s been using an old Mac mini as his home server, as many Apple owners do. But more recently, he’s converted to an Intel NUC, running macOS on non-Apple hardware, and for the most part, it’s been fairly smooth sailing. Once you get over the initial setup and maintenance costs, NUCs make great Mac minis.