Friday Morning News
If you can handle a few bugs here and there, a few unfinished bits and pieces, Cnet’s hands-on with the iPadOS public beta spins quite a yarn about the sheer potential of an iPad freed from many of the encumbrances of iOS that, some say, were holding it back. OK, so maybe that’s stretching it a little. But ask anyone who has used an iPad as their daily driver, and they’ll tell you that all the improvements and changes to the iPad as part of iPadOS are more than welcome on a platform that is basically unparalleled, as far as competitors go.
Apple supplier Japan Display’s future was in question earlier this week, following financial issues and one of its major customers withdrawing an order. Apple has now submitted a US $100 million order to Japan Display, which they can somehow do even though they did not meet agreed-upon minimum order amounts with Samsung for OLED displays. The important difference here is that Japan Display is supplying Apple with LCDs for iPhones and OLEDs for the Apple Watch, and for some reason, Apple is interested in keeping one of its suppliers afloat for a little while longer, despite Japan Display posting a $2.3 billion lost last year.
Apple’s Chief Design Officer Jony Ive has announced he will be leaving Apple later this year to start his own independent design company. The Financial Times reports that while Ive will not be an Apple employee, he and his company LoveFrom will still be very much involved with the company’s various projects, with Apple being one of its primary clients. Apple CEO Tim Cook says that Apple’s in-house team of designers is the strongest it has ever been, and they will continue to work with Ive, who now gets to work on projects outside of consumer technology.
In other Apple personnel news, operations executive Sabih Khan has been promoted to Apple’s leadership team as Senior Vice President of Operations, holding a similar role to Tim Cook before he was chosen for the CEO position, and reporting to Apple COO Jeff Williams. Meanwhile, high profile marketing exec Nick Law is Apple’s new Vice President of Marketing Communications integration, while other marketing industry veteran Chris Thorne becomes the new Chief Marketing Officer for Apple subsidiary Beats.
Apple’s hiring of ARM’s lead CPU and system architect, Mark Filippo, last month has lead a number of outlets to report Apple’s ongoing plans to transition the Mac lineup to ARM as early as 2020. The timing seems strange, given that the Mac Pro is based on Intel, and will likely be Intel for at least the next few years, but I suppose it’s entirely possible Apple will run with a dual ARM/Intel architecture while they work out which way they want to go. I could totally see laptops transitioning to ARM next year, while the rest of the lineup remains on Intel for the time being.
An adware company has become the first known organisation to actively exploit a known bypass vulnerability in macOS Gatekeeper. Although security company Intego believes the first known exploit of a Gatekeeper bypass attack was more of a test than anything else, it goes to show that this kind of thing needs to be resolved by companies before more nefarious individuals or organisations start doing serious damage with it out in the wild.
Shopify are helping Apple roll out Apple Business Chat to just under a million new merchants as of earlier this week, allowing for anyone to chat to their favourite stores via iMessage, and in certain cases, purchase goods using Apple Pay, right from their mobile device. While Engadget reports 820,000 merchants using Shopify now have access to Apple Business Chat, it’s unclear whether this is an automatic thing or whether individual merchants have to opt-in to allow real-time communications with their customers.
An Apple patent investigates the possibility of putting a camera on your Apple Watch strap. The patent is short on details, but the idea is that you could optionally purchase an Apple Watch strap with embedded camera, allowing you to take passable-quality photos if you don’t have your iPhone with you, or alternatively use it as a camera for FaceTime activities using just your Apple Watch. It’s an interesting idea, but I’m not sure about the overall usefulness of having a camera on your wrist.
The Verge has a photo tour of the Frog Design offices, the company founded by Hartmut Esslinger in 1969 and probably best known, at least in Apple circles, for the work it did on Project Snow White, which turned out to be the Apple IIc and many other Apple products of the 80s.
If you’re installing the iOS 13 public beta on your primary device just so you can show the world a video of an iPhone connected to an Iomega Zip Drive, was it all worth it? I mean, probably, yeah. That’s pretty cool.