Wednesday Morning News

Apple is inviting iPhone owners worldwide to submit their best photos captured using an iPhone. From yesterday through to February 8, anyone can submit their best photos via Twitter, Instagram, or directly via email to Apple, with the best 10 being selected to be used by Apple in marketing worldwide by a panel of judges including former official White House chief photographer Pete Souza, Apple SVP of Worldwide Marketing Phil Schiller, travelling photographer Austin Mann, and plenty of other accomplished photographers besides. The terms say that your photos can either be straight from your iPhone, edited with the built-in Photos app, or with third-party software, but with presumably tens of thousands of people attempting to get one of their photos in Apple stores and billboards at locations all around the world, maybe that’s not such a bad thing.

It’s update Wednesday, which means a slew of software updates across Apple’s software platforms have been released. The releases of macOS 10.14.3, iOS 12.1.3, watchOS 5.1.3, and tvOS 12.1.2 are all minor bug fix releases, in the grand scheme of things, and contain no new features as pointed out by Ars Technica. Still, The Verge says iOS 12.1.3 fixes a particularly annoying bug with scrolling through photos in Messages, as well as random CarPlay disconnects.

If I’m reading this right, Apple seems to be claiming in this Bloomberg piece about the monetisation of climate change by corporate America that people will be more dependent on their iPhones than ever before. It’s an interesting statement to make, even though the premise of needing a portable, always-connected device to both check on loved ones and prepare for increasingly severe weather events thanks to climate change is sound enough. It’s just a strange statement to make.

IFixit speculates the MacBook Pro "stage light" effect of uneven backlight is due to Apple choosing to use thinner cables to connect the backlight controller to the main logic board. Over time, as users open and close their laptops, these fragile flex cables wear out, and seeing as they’re routed over the hinge instead of through it as in previous designs, they’re more susceptible to damage, which generally occurs after the standard warranty period on the laptop. Worse, it’s not possible to replace just the cables, you’ll need to swap out the entire display assembly.

During Apple’s testimony in its current legal case vs Qualcomm, Apple’s director of cellular systems architecture Matthias Sauer has said that Qualcomm was really the only choice for 4G iPhones for years. Apple considered alternatives to Qualcomm, including 4G modems from Broadcom, Ericsson, and Intel as far back as 2012, but none of those companies could meet its specs, leading Apple to use Qualcomm modems until the iPhone 7 in 2016.

The iPhone XS Max ranks among the best smartphones for front-facing camera performance and quality selfies as rated by DxOMark, with the only other Apple device on the list being the iPhone X in 10th place. DxOMark also says the iPhone lost points due to its front-facing camera low-light performance compared to some of the other devices on the field.

You might have already seen comparison shots of the rear-facing camera low-light performance of the iPhone XS and XS Max versus Google’s Night Sight technology, but the difference is pretty incredible even if you know that Night Sight is a post-processing effect. A short conversation between Jeremy Burge and Rene Ritchie on Twitter says that Apple is probably only focused on effects it can render live, which Burge argues is the wrong approach when all people care about is great photos, whether they’re edited or not.

Digitimes says AirPower will launch sometime later this year, but when it comes to AirPower, seeing is believing.

Mac image editor Pixelmator Pro has been updated with new features for layers, including the ability to colour-code layers for easy identification and Adobe PSD colour tags on import and export. MacStories has more layers changes in today’s Pixelmator Pro update.

Fortune’s annual ranking of the world’s most admired companies is out, and for the twelfth consecutive year in a row, Apple has taken out the top spot. What makes this even more incredible is how this is criteria-based ranking, not some wishy-washy subjective opinion.

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