Thursday Morning News
Rumour has it Apple has acquired privacy-focused AI startup Silk Labs. The company developed on-device machine learning services and software, processing data without sending it over the internet, something that Apple themselves currently does. While Apple hasn’t confirmed the acquisition in their normal way, the company only had a dozen employees and was relatively unknown.
CNN has shared more of its interview with Apple CEO Tim Cook, which initially aired in October. In the additional footage, Cook discusses why he publicly came out as gay as a desire to help everyone, specifically minorities, saying that everyone needs to be treated with respect. And while Apple Park was the focus of much praise, Apple is working on autonomy in the vehicle space, specifically on the software side.
It wouldn’t be the morning news without a story about how Apple has been sued for allegedly infringing on some company’s patented technology, and this time around, FaceTime and iMessage are under fire from known patent troll Uniloc, according to AppleInsider. The FaceTime-related suit discusses determining client-side features based on identifiers, and iMessage’s voice messages that expire after a set period of time allegedly infringe on a patent gating access to messages.
Writing at Six Colors, Michael Gartenberg offers advice on recent talks that discuss breaking up Apple, splitting it off into its various businesses. I’m not sure who started this conversation or why, but Gartenberg says that at the end of the day, splitting up Apple may lead to more expensive services and products, not less.
9to5Mac says Apple’s pro customers have been the focus of the company of late, with both software and hardware updates worthy of pro users. While recent years have seen the Mac Pro neglected, Final Cut Pro X was released to widespread disappointment, and Apple’s laptops, well, depending on who you ask, they’re still bad. But there’s hope — FCP X is good now, iMac Pros offer more power than ever before, and now we have external GPU support, a much more powerful Mac mini, and iPad Pros that outpace most laptops and desktops at the same price.
In case you haven’t heard, Kayo Sports is a new venture from Foxtel that’s a streaming service exclusively for sports. Being from Foxtel, it has all the sports you would expect, and is all available online. The iOS and Apple TV apps launched recently following the initial launch earlier this month, and surprisingly, they’re good, with plenty of options for viewing multiple sports/channels at a time on the Apple TV side. Not bad for a beta.
MacStories has come up with the home screen icon creator, which leverages the power of Apple’s Shortcuts app to create custom icons for apps, contacts, solid colours with no labels, and more. There’s a comprehensive how-to to use it to customise your home screen to your preferences, with a link to the 24 action shortcut included so you can try it out for yourself.
Macworld tells us about the Universal Clipboard feature of iOS, which was introduced with macOS Sierra and iOS 10. It’s a feature they claim very few people know about unless you watched the keynote where it was introduced, but like other continuity features, there’s almost no settings for it besides the big on-off toggle in iOS.
It’s not completely Apple-related, but if you have purchased 1Password 7 or have an active subscription into 2019, you can give the gift of a free year of 1Password to someone you know. Because what’s better than the gift of better online security? (Nothing, the answer is nothing.)
Speaking of gifts, Apple’s annual holiday ad this year is Share Your Gifts. The animated short is a nice message about showing the world what you’re capable of, and there’s also a behind-the-scenes look if you’re interested in what went into the Pixar-inspired short film.