Friday Morning News

The idea that there will be an Apple Store in Federation Square continues to go from bad to worse, with a recent Future Melbourne Committee meeting voicing opinions from councillors and representatives from local organisations, all of which agreed to oppose demolition of the Yarra Building. Additionally, 1,100 opposing submissions to the idea of an Apple Store in Federation Square were received by Melbourne City Council prior to the meeting, with Heritage Victoria now deciding to approve or reject the demolition permit. It seems that while many Melbourne city residents want a flagship Apple Store in the CBD, they just don’t want it in Federation Square.

Apple has released their 2019 Supplier Responsibility Progress Report, this time focusing on how Apple is helping to improve the lives of those working in supplier factories. Apple says 17.3 million supplier employees have been trained in workplace rights, with 3.6 million being provided with advanced education skills including the completion of App Development with Swift courses.

Speaking of Apple’s supply chain, the Indian IT ministry has given their approval for a Wistron factory in India, which will allow the Apple manufacturing partner to produce iPhone 8 devices in-country. There’s a similar project underway from Foxconn to produce iPhone XS and XS Max models locally in India, and while the Indian Cabinet still needs to sign off on the Wistron factory, things might be looking up for Apple in India.

If the rumours are to be believed, then Apple will release updated AirPods hardware on March 29. While that date falls into the launch window previously claimed for new AirPods, it’s unclear whether any of these rumours hold any weight, and without any invites from Apple for an event in March being sent to the press, it seems unlikely thus far.

AppleInsider writes about how Apple may have trouble finding 5G modems for next year’s iPhones, depending on what kind of 5G tech Apple is willing to include in their devices at that time. Intel’s 5G offerings, in particular, may not include millimeter wave, the fastest form of 5G connectivity, and with Apple’s current spat with Qualcomm, it seems unlikely the two will be able to put aside their differences and work together by the time 2020 iPhones roll around.

An internal note distributed to Apple Store Genius Bars and Apple Authorised Service Providers says that iPhones with third-party battery replacements are now eligible for warranty repairs. It’s a big change from the previous no-repair coverage policy once third-party products were discovered in an iPhone, with arguments ensuing over whether the third-party part affected other components. While there’s no confirmation this applies to Apple Stores worldwide, it certainly seems to read that way.

9to5Mac has suggestions for Family Sharing for iCloud Photos, saying that the current implementation doesn’t work like how you think it would. While a shared photo library between all family members shouldn’t be the default, it should at least be an option, and allowing read-only access to your own photo library would allow for picking and choosing of the photos you want to keep from other family members.

Macworld has a guide on how to get all of the Apple Watch activity badges. Not something you can’t see for yourself by going into the Watch app on your phone and checking out the achievements, but it’s nice to have all of the achievements and their requirements spelled out.

The MacStories Shortcuts Archive is a collection of 150 custom shortcuts for Apple’s Shortcuts app, helping you to do all kinds of things using the simple flow-based logic of Shortcuts. All the shortcuts have been organised into categories, and you can add as many shortcuts as you want to your own Shortcuts library. What’s not to like?

Apple has posted new videos up as part of an update to its "iPhone can do what?" mini-site, which goes further than simply listing features that the iPhone has, although that’s also a part of what Apple is showing us.

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