Tuesday Morning News
Apple expanded its recycling programs over the Easter long weekend, allowing US residents to drop some iPhones off to Best Buy locations to be recycled by Apple. A similar program also allows those in the Netherlands to drop off their devices at KPN, while everyone else can drop off devices at Apple Stores, or via Apple’s online store as part of the trade-in program. Apple also announced the opening of a new Material Recovery Lab in Texas, designed to investigate new methods of disassembly, sorting, and shredding, in order to further Apple’s recycling efforts.
As part of Earth Day yesterday, Apple announced new efforts to protect mangrove forests in Colombia. Partnering with Conservation International, Apple will protect a 27,000 acre region of mangroves that is part of a larger marine protected area, with their feature sharing some of the work that local government authorities are performing to try and conserve the mangroves, as well as the communities that rely on them for food and income.
New rumours regarding the next major release of macOS suggest Apple could be working on expanding Apple Watch authentication beyond simply unlocking your Mac. Current Macs equipped with Touch ID already have the ability to authenticate via Touch ID in a number of circumstances, all of which could come to the Apple Watch in the future, potentially starting with the version of macOS set to be revealed at this year’s WWDC.
Like previous releases, this year’s macOS is expected to adopt a few iOS features, with this year’s likely candidates being Siri Shortcuts, Screen Time, and new preferences panes to manage your Apple ID and Family Sharing. Shortcuts on the Mac will work just like its iOS counterpart in that you’ll have to download it separately, but it also raises a number of interesting questions regarding the future of Automator and Mac automation in general.
There’s also new rumours regarding what WWDC will have in store for developers, with the likely suspects being improvements across the board to Siri, Marzipan, AR, as well as new APIs to allow developers to use the Taptic Engine, NFC, and new CoreML technologies.
Meanwhile, on the hardware front, new photos have been shared on Chinese social media that show a triple camera layout for this year’s iPhones. While it’s disingenuous to claim that anything with an Apple logo on it is official, there’s enough details to say there’s a good chance that these moulds are the real thing, or at least close to it.
Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo says this year’s iPhones will feature a front-facing camera upgrade, taking the current 7-megapixel cameras to ones with 12-megapixels. Three rear cameras are also on the table for the higher-spec iPhones (while the XR-spec goes to two rear cameras), with black lens coating tech used on the front-facing cameras to make them less conspicuous. Next year’s iPhones, on the other hand, are expected to support 5G with modems supplied by both Qualcomm and Samsung, given Apple has now settled with the former.
The Sweet Setup has a piece on how to use Drafts across the Mac, iOS devices, and the Apple Watch. It’s available on all three platforms to let you get your thoughts down using whatever input method suits you best, so you can always capture what you’re thinking about, and from there, Draft’s inbuilt actions and organisation features can then give you options on what to do with your written words.
OWC are now selling upgraded Aura Pro X2 SSDs for upgrading certain Macs. While some of the Macs that are compatible with the Aura Pro X2 may already ship with Apple SSDs, OWC says its drives have better power consumption and operating temperatures than the Apple models, with a price that’s also a little easier to swallow than Apple’s pricey upgrades — while an Apple SSD upgrade to 1TB will cost you close to $1000, you may be able to get an OWC SSD for a little more than half that.
There’s just one more thing I want to share in this morning’s news, and that’s news of Apple losing a legal battle to use the term "one more thing". Apple wanted Swatch to stop using its trademarked term, arguing that Swatch’s trademarked term was synonymous with its founder Steve Jobs, but an Australian court disagreed, saying that it wasn’t enough that the term was used to introduce a particular product or service, and then never used in conjunction with that product or service ever again.