Monday Morning News
Teardowns of the iPhone XS and XS Max from iFixit tell us about the slightly-changed internals of Apple’s latest iPhones. There’s the one-piece battery in the XS, the upside-down SIM card tray, and yet another shade of gold that’s unlike any other gold-coloured device we’ve seen from Apple so far. Apart from that, it’s mostly the same as last year, including double the glass for double the chance to put a crack in your daily carry.
Sometime last week, while we still pre-occupied with the newness of iOS 12, watchOS 5, and tVOS 12, Apple released the first betas of the first point-one release of all three software platforms, bumptin. Group FaceTime makes a return in iOS 12.1, along with code giving us hope of landscape Face ID support on these upcoming iPads, which is curious given Apple didn’t seem to want to release new iPhones with the capability. And although Apple is working with Health Canada to bring the Apple Watch’s ECG feature there, there’s no hint of it yet in the first watchOS 5.1 beta.
The European Commission is closing its legal investigation into Apple’s failure to pay back taxes to Ireland, following Apple paying back €14 billion to the Irish government. I’m wondering how the logistics of a money transfer of that magnitude works — do you just go to the bank and tell them you want to transfer eleven digits to the government? Or did Apple pay by Amex or something, for the points?
CNet tells us the strange, if slightly convoluted story of iTunes licensing, where one guy switching his Apple ID to a different region meant he “lost” some of his purchases. Apple didn’t outright remove his purchases from his account, instead this guy “fell into a licensing crack” edge case, which apparently justified his initial outrage.
An iPhone rumour roundup takes a look at the frequency and accuracy of iPhone rumours leading up to this year’s release. Of the 46 rumours we had this year about new iPhones (less than 2017’s 90 and 2016’s 77), 54% turned out to be true compared to 2017’s 64% and 2016’s 54%. Interestingly, more rumours in any given month didn’t necessarily correlate to better accuracy, although generally rumours closer to the release date were more accurate than those earlier in the year, as you might expect.
Apple released a cool interactive website for looking at iPhones sometime in the past week. You’ll need to be using a mobile device to view it, although then you’ll also be able to tilt and view the iPhone XS and XS Max from various angles. It’s not quite as good as going to an Apple Store and checking them out in person, but it’s not bad. And they have a cool domain, too.
A paywalled article on the Wall Street Journal says Apple doesn’t want mature content on its streaming service. Apple CEO Tim Cook put the brakes on television show Vital Signs after he viewed it, saying it was too violent and that Apple couldn’t show it. Apple’s approach to content will be one to watch, given that many other distributors don’t shy away from showing sex, violence, or other adult content, it remains to be seen whether it will be successful.
Our friends across the pond now have access to transit directions, with Apple Maps now providing transit directions for New Zealanders. In Auckland, transit directions are available for buses, trains, and the city’s shuttle service to the airport, while Apple Maps can also provide transit directions for inter-city journeys on buses, trains, and even ferries.
Over 2,000 ANZ ATMs across Australia now support Apple Pay for cash withdrawals. It’s similar to the cardless cash concept already offered by Westpac and CommBank, except using Apple Pay instead of a one-time code that you’re sent. There must be some other smarts going on behind-the-scenes, given that Apple Pay isn’t supposed to give payment terminals your actual card details — which is probably why you need to select your card and enter your PIN to withdraw when using Apple Pay at ANZ ATMs.
Apple has two new videos out, both of which are to do with just-released products. There’s a 5-minute guided tour of the new iPhones with shots from around Apple Park, and the first Apple Watch Series 4 ad tells you about the better you.