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  1. American Heart Association says iPhone 12 MagSafe will interfere with pacemakers and defibrillators Journal of the American Heart Association yesterday published a new research report which confirmed that Apple iPhone 12-series MagSafe technology will interfere with pacemakers and defibrillators. Apple iPhone 12 series comes with an array of magnets that has the capacity to generate magnet fieldstrength >50 gauss (G). AHA concluded that Apple iPhone 12 can cause magnet interference on CIEDs and has the potential to inhibit lifesaving therapy. You can read about American Heart Association’s methods and results below. This study has an in vivo and an ex vivo component. The in vivo component consists of consecutive patients who presented to the electrophysiology laboratory with previously implanted CIEDs. The iPhone 12 Pro Max was directly placed on the skin over the pocket of these patients and the effect was studied by device interrogation. For the ex vivo component of the study, CIEDs from major device companies were tested for magnetic interference caused by iPhone 12 Pro Max through unopened packages. We found that iPhone 12 Pro Max resulted in clinically identifiable magnet interference in 3/3 (100%) participants in vivo and in 8/11 (72.7%) devices ex vivo. Source: AHA American Heart Association says iPhone 12 MagSafe will interfere with pacemakers and defibrillators
  2. Apple may switch to its own 5G iPhone modems by 2023 Qualcomm will remain its 5G chip supplier until then, said analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. Engadget Apple's purchase of Intel's 5G smartphone modem business in 2019 may start to pay dividends by 2023, according to analyst Ming-Chi Kuo in a report from MacRumors. Apple's first iPhones using its own custom-designed 5G chips will appear in 2023 "at the earliest," he wrote. If that proves accurate, Apple will rely on Qualcomm to supply its modems for at least a couple more generations of iPhones. "We predict that the iPhone will adopt Apple's own design 5G baseband chips in 2023 at the earliest," the report states. "As Android sales in the high-end 5G phone market are sluggish, Qualcomm will be forced to compete for more orders in the low-end market to compensate for Apple's order loss." The new rumor lines up with a recent Barclays report that claimed Apple's custom 5G modems would appear in 2023 iPhones, as MacRumors notes. Given the challenges that Apple and Intel had implementing a 5G modem, it's not surprising that it's taking Apple some time to develop its own chips. Apple currently uses Qualcomm's Snapdragon X55 modem in current iPhone 12 models and is expected to use the X60 and X65 modems in the 2021 and 2022 models. Once the company switches to its own modems, it may reduce supply constraints (and thus prices) on 5G modems, making the technology more feasible for low-end smartphones, according to Kuo. Source: Apple may switch to its own 5G iPhone modems by 2023
  3. Apple patents tech for under-screen Touch ID on iPhone Apple has just filed a patent relating to under-screen Touch ID - indicating that this is something it is looking in to. If you want your next iPhone to have a fingerprint scanner you may be pleased to learn that Apple has filed a patent for tech described as "Under-display fingerprint sensing based on off-axis angular light". Essentially under screen Touch ID. While this won't be the news that fans of the Home button were hoping for (they'll still have to make do with the iPhone SE or an old iPhone 8 - read Which iPhones have Touch ID) it does mean that if you prefer not to have to rely on Face ID an alternative may be available to you. Apple describes how the technology works in the patent application, filed on 18 March 2021. Apple describes a method that will recognise fingerprints both quickly and securely. There is no indication that the fingerprint reader will replace the current face recognition - it seems more likely that it would be a complement to Face ID. This way, users can freely choose between Touch ID and Face ID for login - something many would wish for when our faces are obscured by a mask. (Read: How to unlock an iPhone when wearing a mask). The patent does suggest that Apple is looking into a way to bring back the fingerprint reader. While it may not appear on the 2021 iPhone, it may still appear on the iPhone 13, or a subsequent iPhone. This isn't the first such patent - Apple was granted a patent for under-screen Touch ID in November 2020. According to a Bloomberg report back in January 2021, Apple is testing a prototype of the 2021 iPhone with a fingerprint reader under the screen. More on that here: 2021 iPhone: Touch ID below screen and no lightning port. The Wall Street Journal also claimed in February 2021 that Apple is working with optical sensors for reading fingerprints directly through the screen. Read: iPhone 13 'will get under-screen Touch ID'. Read more about the iPhone 13 (or whatever the 2021 iPhone will be called) here: iPhone 13 news hub. Source: Apple patents tech for under-screen Touch ID on iPhone
  4. Apple's iPhone might get a periscope camera, but don't expect it very soon The iPhone will get a periscope lens for its telephoto camera, a new report says, but don't expect it before 2023. This is according to Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo (via MacRumors), who previously said the iPhone might get such a camera as early as 2022, but has now pushed his prediction into 2023. Smartphones with periscope lens cameras have been around for a few years. China's Oppo was the first company to show a working prototype phone with such a camera, giving it 5x lossless zoom. The phone's periscope lens consisted of two lenses, one of which was positioned vertically, and the other horizontally, similar to the way a submarine periscope works. IMAGE: OPPO Later on, other smartphone makers, including Huawei, launched phones with similar camera technology. For the user, the benefits boil down to better optical zoom. Apple's iPhones currently have a maximal 2.5x optical zoom, but a periscope lens could push that further to 5x or more. While this new iPhone is probably more than two years away, Kuo also shared some details about the iPhones coming in 2021 and 2022. The 2021 iPhones will have an upgraded telephoto lens, and a new Face ID transmitter, he said, and the telephoto lens will be further upgraded on the iPhones coming in 2022. Next year's iPhones will also have a new "unibody" lens design, which should reduce the size of the selfie camera. This, in turn, could pave the way for an iPhone with a punch-hole camera cutout on the display, which would replace the current notch. Finally, Kuo shared some news on Apple's rumored mixed reality headset. It will have 15 optical camera modules, he said, with eight cameras used for the augmented reality experience, six for "innovative biometrics," and one for environmental detection. The headset will be light (perhaps 100-200 grams) and portable, though not fully mobile, Kuo said. It would have high-end, micro-OLED displays, and overall offer a better experience than current VR products. It should launch in 2022, and be priced at around $1,000, which is significantly lower than some previous estimates we've heard. Source: Apple's iPhone might get a periscope camera, but don't expect it very soon
  5. iOS 14 – iOS 14.3 Unc0ver 6.0 Jailbreak Released with iPhone 6s – iPhone 12 Support Less than a week after teasing an iOS 14 – iOS 14.3 jailbreak for iPhone 12 and lower devices, @Pwn20wnd has released Unc0ver 6.0 to the public. This marks the first public release of an iOS 14 – iOS 14.3 jailbreak that supports newer iPhones like the iPhone 12, iPhone 11, etc. This is a full-fledged jailbreak release as it features tweak injection via Substitute and has Cydia for package management. Unc0ver uses an implementation similar to the cicuta_verosa exploit that was detailed by @ModernPwner recently. CoolStar from the Odyssey jailbreak team is working on an iOS 14 – iOS 14.3 jailbreak based on the cicuta_verosa exploit. If you have an iPhone or iPad running iOS 14 – iOS 14.3, you can jailbreak it using the latest version of Unc0ver. Checkra1n jailbreak was already capable of jailbreaking iOS 14 – iOS 14.3, but it only worked on iPhone X, iPhone 8, iPhone 7, and iPhone 6s, leaving the newer iPhones out in the lurch. Unc0ver, however, has no such restrictions. Do remember that since this is the first version of the jailbreak, it can be a bit buggy, and there might be some instability issues. Sadly, if your iPhone is already running iOS 14.4, there’s no way for you to downgrade it back to iOS 14.3 or another older version of iOS 14. This is because Apple is no longer signing any of the older releases of iOS 14. To jailbreak your iPhone using Unc0ver, you’ll first have to install the app on your iPhone using AltStore. Once installed, you can proceed to jailbreak your iPhone running iOS 14 – iOS 14.3. After you are done jailbreaking your iPhone, make sure to check out the best iOS 14 – iOS 14.3 Cydia tweaks to try out some amazing jailbreak tweaks. You can also check out some of the top Cydia sources and repos to find some useful jailbreak tweaks yourself. Source: iOS 14 – iOS 14.3 Unc0ver 6.0 Jailbreak Released with iPhone 6s – iPhone 12 Support
  6. New app Thy Phone beings some of Your Phone’s features to the iPhone In as much as many Android users are envious of the special treatment Samsung gets from Microsoft, iPhone users have even less support, with Continue on PC the only iPhone/PC integration available to them. Developer Peter Freeman Foot has seen an opportunity and created the Thy Phone app for Windows 10 which brings some of the features of Your Phone to iOS. Specifically, the Thy Phone app will let you make hands-free calls from your PC, transmit audio from your phone to your PC and bring Apple Notifications to your PC. The app makes use of functionality available in Windows 10 2004 and above to setup a phone device to use Windows as a handsfree device. This allows you to conduct calls through your PC microphone and speakers (or headset) and see call progress and incoming call alerts on your desktop. It also allows you to activate the Bluetooth Audio support so that you can play music, podcasts etc from your phone through your PC. Finally, when using an iPhone it supports toast notifications and mirrors those notifications directly in the Windows notification centre. Notifications that uses actions can also be triggered directly from the desktop Toast. Peter aims to add more functionality over time including Messaging support and file transfer, all using open Bluetooth protocols (which also means other phone OSes are also supported. The app is not free, unfortunately, but cheap for the functionality it offers. Find it in the Microsoft Store here. Thy Phone Developer: ‪In The Hand Ltd‬ Price: 4,79 € New app Thy Phone beings some of Your Phone’s features to the iPhone
  7. iPhone 12 Pro Max Named Most Popular 5G Smartphone in United States Apple's iPhone 12 Pro Max held the title of most popular 5G smartphone in 49 of 50 U.S. states as of January 2021, according to PCMag, citing data from Speedtest.net parent company Ookla and research firm M Science. The methodology behind the rankings: M Science directly tracks sales, and gave us cumulative sales figures up until Jan. 23. Ookla looks at the usage of its Speedtest apps on consumers' phones, and gave us data for tests taken in January. They agree that the iPhone 12 Pro Max is the most popular 5G phone in the US. The standard iPhone 12 Pro was the most popular 5G smartphone in Vermont and the Washington, D.C. capital region, the report claims. While the iPhone 12 Pro Max, iPhone 12, and iPhone 12 Pro took the top three spots in the rankings, the smaller iPhone 12 mini was far less popular, in line with reports indicating that the 5.4-inch device has faced lackluster sales. Samsung's Galaxy S20+ and Galaxy S20 Ultra rounded out the top five best-selling 5G smartphones. iPhone 12 models support ultra-fast mmWave 5G in the United States, and rumors suggest that iPhone 13 models will expand mmWave support to additional countries. Source: iPhone 12 Pro Max Named Most Popular 5G Smartphone in United States
  8. Apple is reportedly working on a MagSafe battery pack for the iPhone A magnetic battery pack? Sign us up. What you need to know Code in the second iOS 14.5 beta talks about a new "Mobile Charge Mode." It also points to a new battery pack that uses MagSafe to attach to the iPhone. As reported by WCCFTech, it appears that Apple may finally be working on that MagSafe battery pack that we all have wanted since the iPhone 12 lineup was released last fall. Steve Moser, a contributing writer at MacRumors, noticed code in the second beta of iOS 14.5 that talks about a new "Mobile Charge Mode" for the iPhone. It indicates that the company is working on a battery pack that attaches to the iPhone through MagSafe and keeps the iPhone charged at 90% to maintain "battery efficiency." New 'Mobile Charge Mode' in iOS 14.5 beta 2 for an as-yet-unannounced 'Battery Pack' and not a case presumedly because it uses MagSafe for charging iPhone 12 devices. Also interestingly it keeps your iPhone charged to 90% for 'battery efficiency'. New 'Mobile Charge Mode' in iOS 14.5 beta 2 for an as-yet-unannounced 'Battery Pack' and not a case presumedly because it uses MagSafe for charging iPhone 12 devices. Also interestingly it keeps your iPhone charged to 90% for 'battery efficiency'. https://t.co/CPZXkBXkEc pic.twitter.com/jHHrrz4Qir — Steve Moser (@SteveMoser) February 16, 2021 The report notes that, while a MagSafe battery pack is a great idea, in theory, there are currently efficiency impacts from wireless charging that still make it an inferior charging method in many situations. At the same time, there are tons of questions that need answering. For example, a wired connection is a far more efficient way of charging anything. Bring wireless charging into the play and you suddenly lose energy in the form of heat, ultimately leading to inefficiency. Has this upcoming accessory figured all the inefficiency issues out? If Apple has figured out the power transfer and heat issues, a MagSafe battery pack for the iPhone would be a solid product that many would find useful. Source: Apple is reportedly working on a MagSafe battery pack for the iPhone
  9. Prosser: 2021 iPhone has smaller notch & 1TB memory In his latest video well-known Apple leaker Jon Prosser reveals details about the iPhone 13 (or rather iPhone 12s) In his latest video well-known Apple leaker Jon Prosser reveals the latest leaks about the upcoming iPhone 13. The notch is getting smaller - but probably not in the way you were hoping. Rumours about a smaller notch have been circulating for a while and it is at the top of the wish list for many iPhone fans, but there is new information about this in Prosser's latest video. According to Prosser, the notch of the 2021 iPhone "isn't smaller in the way we want it to be". Rather than being narrower, apparently it will be shorter - but he emphasises that it may well change. He referrs to the leak from Ice Universe as being more in line with what he is hearing: pic.twitter.com/p622bYO2RN — Ice universe (@UniverseIce) October 7, 2020 Two weeks ago, the Japanese blog Macotakara said something similar: The notch on the upper edge of the display will be smaller because Apple has moved the receiver of the True Depth system to the inside of the case. Read: iPhone 13 will look like iPhone 12 with smaller notch. iPhone 2021 with 1TB of storage? It doesn't matter what Apple calls this year's iPhone: The iPhone 13 or 12s will for the first time have a storage capacity of up to 1TB, according to Prosser. However, this is not new news from the Apple leaker: As we reported in November 2020, Prosser suspected this a few months ago. Read: iPhone 13 could get 1TB of storage. In his video, Prosser explains what strategy Apple could pursue with this decision. An iPhone with 1TB of storage would undoubtedly be one of the most expensive models Apple will offer. Most users, Prosser believes, would opt for a cheaper model and make more use of Apple's cloud storage, which ultimately also makes Apple a lot of money. iPhone 12s Prosser also repeats the theory that Apple is not planning an iPhone 13 for this year, but rather an S version as the successor to the iPhone 12. We also recently reported that even Apple's own engineers are only talking about an S version. Prosser himself did not name any sources for his claim. For more information about the iPhone 13 (or iPhone 12s) read our iPhone 2021 news round up. This article originally appeared on Macwelt. Translation by Karen Haslam. Source: Prosser: 2021 iPhone has smaller notch & 1TB memory
  10. Apple researching 'light folding' to make periscope lenses for iPhone A newly-revealed patent application shows that Apple is pressing ahead with its search for a "folding camera" for the iPhone. Apple has been expected to develop a "folding camera" for a future iPhone. Most recently, Apple has reportedly been searching for a supplier to make such a periscope lens, and now a new patent application explains the thinking behind it. It's previously been reported that a folding lens system could reduce the camera bump on the back of iPhones. However, Apple has been researching this for several years, already holding multiple patents on the topic. This latest patent application, "Camera Including Two Light Folding Elements," is specifically concerned with the balance between having an improved camera while keeping the small form factor of an iPhone, or an iPad. "The advent of small, mobile multipurpose devices such as smartphones and tablet or pad devices has resulted in a need for high-resolution, small form factor cameras that are lightweight, compact, and capable of capturing high resolution, high quality images at low F-numbers for integration in the devices," says the application. "However, due to limitations of conventional camera technology, conventional small cameras used in such devices tend to capture images at lower resolutions and/or with lower image quality than can be achieved with larger, higher quality cameras," it continues. Apple says that what is needed is a "photosensor with small pixel size and a good, compact imaging lens system." But as these have been developed, demand for even better ones has increased. "In addition," it continues, "there are increasing expectations for small form factor cameras to be equipped with higher pixel count and/or larger pixel size image sensors (one or both of which may require larger image sensors) while still maintaining a module height that is compact enough to fit into portable electronic devices." Apple's proposal is a lens system may be configured in the camera to move on one or more axes independently" of a prism or mirror in the iPhone body. This patent application describes very many different combinations of types of lens, and the number of lenses, but broadly the proposal follows one core idea. "The camera may include an actuator component configured to move the lens system," it says, along with "two light folding elements (eg two prisms, or one prism and a mirror.") As well as the zoom function that a periscope lens is expected to give, this particular configuration could also "provide optical image stabilization (OIS) functionality for the camera." The patent application is credited to Yuhong Yao, whose previous work includes several granted patents on related topics. Chief among those are a series of patents for folding lens systems with three, four, or five refractive lenses. Source: Apple researching 'light folding' to make periscope lenses for iPhone
  11. Apple registers record iPhone sales in India - It may be the new start it was expecting 5G demand may push it further up (Image credit: TechRadar) A report from analytics firms Counterpoint Research and CyberMedia Research (CMR) suggest that Apple may have doubled its year-on-year iPhone sales in India in the company's fourth quarter of 2020. Apple shipped more than 1.5 million iPhone units in India in the quarter that ended in December, up 100% on its year-on-year performance. Apple best ever quarter in India comes on the back of strong sales of older models like iPhone 11, iPhone XR and iPhone SE coupled with high interest in the new iPhone 12. Overall, the tech giant had 4% of the market in quarter four, while cumulative 2020 sales soared 60% at more than 3.2 million units. The Apple iPad category saw 25% growth (performance-wise) in Q4 and for the full year 2020, it logged 17% growth. For the calendar year 2020, Apple's total India smartphone share was about 2.4%, which is a significant rise. Apple changing its India strategy The news agency IANS has quoted Prabhu Ram, Head-Industry Intelligence Group (IIG), CMR, as saying: "Apple continues its stellar run in the India smartphone market, gaining strength on the back of increased local manufacturing and strong marketing initiatives during the festive season." The relatively lesser market share of Apple in India is understandable as it has pegged itself in the premium segment and also due to the fact that the company kind of treated the Indian market with a disinterest that puzzled analysts, both here and elsewhere. But Apple may be looking to change its ways. Already, last year, Apple launched its online store in the country and offered customers a bouquet of financing and upgrade options, AppleCare+, and freebies like AirPods with the purchase of iPhone 11. As Prabhu Ram said, "Apple is on track to grow further and gain strength in the year ahead, as it unveils its new India initiatives on the back of its new online store, and upcoming flagship retail stores." Apple phone manufacturing in India itself is also moving into a higher gear. Despite the problems in one of its assembling units, Wistron, Apple is looking to increase its production in India through Foxconn and Pegatron, two other contract manufacturers of the tech giant. 5G demand to help Apple in India Further, the expected spike in demand for 5G phones in India is also expected to help Apple. Counterpoint Research predicts that India's 5G smartphone shipments could grow more than nine-fold in 2021 to 38 million units, up from an estimated 4 million last year. Apple can tap into this massive jump by aggressively plugging its iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 mini. The latter's price is not all that too distant from the competing brand products in the segment. Rumours have it that Apple may put 5G connectivity into its entry-level iPhone SE this year. It is also said that iPhone SE could rock the same A14 Bionic processor that powers the iPhone 12, and it could be launched in the second half of the year. This can make Apple even more competitive in India in the years to come. Apple registers record iPhone sales in India - It may be the new start it was expecting
  12. There may be multiple different players in the jailbreak community all looking to offer solutions, but we’ve always admired those who keep trying to produce great work for the benefit of device owners. That admiration is extended to CoolStar, most recently for his creation and publishing of the Electra jailbreak for iOS 11, and the fact that it’s been tirelessly updated. Well, there is now a new update available, and it’s one you’re going to want to take notice of as it features a very special addition. CoolStar and his band of highly-capable merry men have finally released the final 1.0.x version of Electra jailbreak, complete with Cydia Installer support built right in. This version of Electra jailbreak is deemed stable enough and hence is marked as 1.0 rather than any beta or RC. Just about anyone can go ahead and download it right now. For those who don’t know, Electra works with iOS 11.0-11.1.2 firmwares and is compatible with all 64-bit devices, including iPhone X, as long as those devices are running the aforementioned compatible firmwares. This is because Electra is based of Ian Beer’s exploit which was only applicable on iOS 11.0-11.1.2. Original released back as beta in January sans Cydia, this latest final version of the tool is the first jailbreak for iOS 11 which offers support for Cydia out-of-the-box. As for the jailbreak process, it pretty much remains exactly the same. Once the latest version of the Electra jailbreak is downloaded, and the IPA is sideloaded to the device, the jailbreak process will be exactly as it was previously, but this time with the added benefit of actually installing a usable version of Cydia to the device. And yes, that means that compatible tweaks and packages will be able to be installed through the Cydia interface. Here are important notes from changelog of Electra 1.0.x: An APFS snapshot is created of / so you may revert it at a later date if needed Substitute, Tweak Loader and Substrate Compatibility Layer available from Electra repo Many packages need to be updated for both Electra and iOS 11 (make sure they’re updated before installing as they may not work yet) It’s great news for device owners that CoolStar and his highly capable team have once again put the effort to the benefit of the jailbreak community even before Saurik could come up with his own “promised” jailbreak with iOS 11 Cydia update. Final version of Electra jailbreak for iOS 11 can be downloaded from coolstar.org/electra/. Once downloaded, you can follow our guide here on how to jailbreak your device using Electra: How To Jailbreak iOS 11.1.2 Using Electra With Cydia [Tutorial]. Redmondpie.com
  13. iPhone looters find devices disabled, with a warning they’re being tracked Apple has long used digital anti-theft measures in its stores. Enlarge / The iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max. Samuel Axon 50 with 39 posters participating Along with other retailers big and small, Apple Stores have been subject to looting by opportunists amid the ongoing protests around the United States. In response, Apple has again closed all of its stores in the US. Stores had only recently reopened after closures related to the COVID-19 pandemic. But looters who brought stolen iPhones home, or people who end up buying those phones in person-to-person transactions, are in for what may be a surprise: it appears that the stolen iPhones don't work and may even be tracked by Apple or authorities. This could pose a challenge for regular consumers who buy second-hand iPhones—as well as repair shops—in the coming weeks and months. Individuals with iPhones allegedly looted from Apple stores found that the phones were automatically disabled and had messages like the following (via Twitter) displayed on-screen: Please return to Apple Walnut Street. This device has been disabled and is being tracked. Local authorities will be alerted. A few examples of these messages have surfaced on Reddit and Twitter over the past day or two. That said, we don't know how many iPhones have been taken from Apple Stores and put in circulation. Apple has been known in the past to use special images of iOS on demo unit iPhones, and those demo iPhones have a sort of kill switch that disables the phones as soon as they are out of range of the store's Wi-Fi network. So none of this is surprising. Also, Apple already offers a service to users called FindMy that allows tracking of lost or stolen iPhones via the user's iCloud account. There's no apparent reason related tools and services couldn't be used by Apple itself. Anti-theft measures are not Apple's only focus amid civil unrest, though. Bloomberg acquired a memo sent by Apple CEO Tim Cook to employees that constitutes the company's official response to the killing of George Floyd and the protests in response to that killing. Among other things, Cook wrote: That painful past is still present today—not only in the form of violence, but in the everyday experience of deeply rooted discrimination. We see it in our criminal justice system, in the disproportionate toll of disease on Black and Brown communities, in the inequalities in neighborhood services and the educations our children receive. While our laws have changed, the reality is that their protections are still not universally applied. He added: Today, Apple is making donations to a number of groups, including the Equal Justice Initiative, a non-profit committed to challenging racial injustice, ending mass incarceration, and protecting the human rights of the most vulnerable people in American society. For the month of June, and in honor of the Juneteenth holiday, we’ll also be matching two-for-one all employee donations via Benevity. The New York Times reported that the environment around the protests was more peaceful last night than other recent nights, with fewer instances of looting. But it is not known when Apple might again reopen its stores. iPhone looters find devices disabled, with a warning they’re being tracked
  14. Should I leave my iPhone VPN app on at all times? Yes and no - let us explain (Image credit: nikkimeel / Shutterstock.com) Having a VPN on your iPhone is a great way to ensure your device is more secure when using public networks, keeping your identity hidden and your private data private. Additionally, VPNs give you more choice over the websites and content you can access online - despite where you happen to be in the world. But one question that comes up a lot is whether, once installed, you should leave your iPhone VPN app on at all times. VPN apps make your iPhone more secure There are many reasons why it’s a good idea to use a VPN app on your iPhone - especially when it comes to security. If you regularly use public Wi-Fi networks, some aren’t encrypted and could allow hackers to access your personal data. By having your VPN active in the background, it will encrypt your data and make sure it’s always protected while you use public networks. While iPhones are generally regarded as secure, that’s not to say they’ll always protect your privacy. In fact, research has shown that many iOS developers ignore Apple’s strict security roles and don’t add end-to-end encryption to their apps, while Apple has been known to give developers access to user data. VPNs add end-to-end encryption, so turning them off would make your iPhone more vulnerable. What else do iPhone VPN apps do? We spend a lot of our time online, from searching the web to chatting on social media. But what you may not realise is that as you travel the web, your internet service provider can track everything - and even sell your data to advertisers. An active mobile VPN will encrypt your internet traffic and IP address around the clock, meaning you don’t have to worry about privacy issues. If you use a VPN service to access content that isn’t available in your region, we’d recommend keeping it turned on. Once you deactivate it, the content provider will be able to see that you’ve changed IP addresses and know you’ve been using a VPN service. As a result, they could ban you from accessing their platform as it's often a direct breach of their terms of service. (Image credit: OpturaDesign / Shutterstock.com) People use their iPhones for making transactions online daily, whether it’s ordering the weekly food shop, buying a new pair of trainers on eBay or doing online banking. If that’s the case, you should definitely use a VPN and keep it turned on. It'll encrypt personal information such as credit card details and clamp down on fraud - those encrypted tunnels they utilise are perfect for keeping your private data out of the hands of hackers. Another reason to leave your VPN on is that it can stop bandwidth throttling. This is when internet service providers intentionally slow down your internet connection to control online traffic. However, by using a VPN and ensuring it’s always active, your ISP won’t be able to see your IP address and throttle it. But leaving it on all the time? However, you’ll need to make a few compromises when constantly using a VPN. First of all, there’s often a problem with speed. Because VPNs reroute your internet traffic to another server, this can result in time delays. So if you intend on gaming, downloading a long film or transferring large files, it’s probably best to turn your VPN off - as long as you're on a secured source of Wi-Fi, of course. Keeping your VPN switched on may also affect battery life, especially if you spend a lot of time surfing the web, streaming and playing games on your iPhone. It’ll constantly be working in the background, which means you’ll likely see your battery percentage drop throughout the day. For any iPhone user who spends a lot of time on their device, leaving a VPN app on at all times makes a lot of sense. It’ll allow you to protect your personal data and ensure hackers can’t compromise your device around the clock while allowing you to do even more with your iPhone VPN. But just be wary that this may affect battery life and overall internet speed. Should I leave my iPhone VPN app on at all times?
  15. Apple delays privacy feature that would let iPhone owners keep ad tracking at bay The changes will go live with iOS 14, but Apple will start enforcing them early next year Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge Apple is delaying a controversial new privacy rule it’s implementing with iOS 14 that will require developers to ask users for permission to gather data and track them across mobile apps and websites on the iPhone and iPad, the company announced in a developer update posted Thursday. Apple originally intended for the rule to go live with iOS 14, slated for released sometime this fall, but it’s now giving developers more time to comply with the changes. Among the companies most concerned about the change is Facebook, which said it would stop using the unique identifiers Apple intends to warn users about but expressed concern for third-party advertisers on its network that cannot afford to do the same. “We are committed to ensuring users can choose whether or not they allow an app to track them. To give developers time to make necessary changes, apps will be required to obtain permission to track users starting early next year,” reads the developer note. Apple says developers can begin complying with the rule when iOS 14 launches if they choose, but it won’t require them do so until 2021. “We believe technology should protect users’ fundamental right to privacy, and that means giving users tools to understand which apps and websites may be sharing their data with other companies for advertising or advertising measurement purposes, as well as the tools to revoke permission for this tracking,” Apple said in a statement given to The Verge. “When enabled, a system prompt will give users the ability to allow or reject that tracking on an app-by-app basis. We want to give developers the time they need to make the necessary changes, and as a result, the requirement to use this tracking permission will go into effect early next year.” Apple isn’t necessarily going to war with the digital and mobile ad industries, but the privacy feature is among the iPhone maker’s most aggressive developer policy changes it has introduced in recent memory. First revealed at this year’s WWDC in June, the new feature will show users a prompt when an app has requested their so-called Identification for Advertisers, or IDFA, code. Many users are expected to decline, and Facebook has said the feature may “severely impact” its ad network, according to a report from Bloomberg last week on the social network’s decision to stop collecting IDFA codes altogether. The code is a unique identifier that helps advertisers track the effectiveness of ads cross mobile apps, websites, email clients, and more. This is traditionally how advertisers know when you’ve, say, downloaded an iOS game from an app install ad within Facebook or when you’ve clicked on a product within Instagram that redirects you to an online web store. There are other complex methods and tools advertisers use to track you on the internet, but the IDFA is a generally industry-standard approach that’s useful across various ad types, devices, and platforms. Apple’s decision to place it behind an opt-in message may have substantial consequences for the advertising industry and how it makes use of mobile tracking. Related to the opt-in feature is another new privacy policy Apple says developers will need to read up on in order to be compliant later this year. It’s a new list of privacy information that will be attached to App Store product listings that detail in depth how a given app collects and stores information across a series of domains, ranging from health and fitness data to location information to web browsing history. “On each app’s product page, users can learn about some of the data types the app may collect, and whether that data is linked to them or used to track them. You’ll need to provide information about your app’s privacy practices, including the practices of third-party partners whose code you integrate into your app, in App Store Connect starting this fall,” reads a new page Apple published on its developer portal on Thursday. The page details the types of data that a developer will have to disclose its collection methods for, as well as guidelines over how a developer communicates the way it uses that data. Developers will also be asked to identify whether “each data type is linked to a user’s account, device, or identity by you and/or your third-party partners.” There are also instructions around disclosures for tracking and privacy policies. Apple delays privacy feature that would let iPhone owners keep ad tracking at bay
  16. The technology behind the iPhone lidar may be coming soon to cars How Apple made affordable lidar with no moving parts for the iPhone. Enlarge 74 with 41 posters participating, including story author At Tuesday's unveiling of the iPhone 12, Apple touted the capabilities of its new lidar sensor. Apple says lidar will enhance the iPhone's camera by allowing more rapid focus, especially in low-light situations. And it may enable the creation of a new generation of sophisticated augmented reality apps. Tuesday's presentation offered little detail about how the iPhone's lidar actually works, but this isn't Apple's first device with lidar. Apple first introduced the technology with the refreshed iPad in March. And while no one has done a teardown of the iPhone 12 yet, we can learn a lot from recent iPad teardowns. Lidar works by sending out laser light and measuring how long it takes to bounce back. Because light travels at a constant speed, the round-trip time can be translated into a precise distance estimate. Repeat this process across a two-dimensional grid and the result is a three-dimensional "point cloud" showing the location of objects around a room, street, or other location. A June analysis by System Plus Consulting found that the iPad's lidar sends out light using an array of vertical cavity surface-emitting lasers (VCSELs) made by Lumentum. It then detects the return flash using an array of sensors called single-photon avalanche diodes (SPADs) supplied by Sony. I'll explain what these are in the next section. I found Apple's announcement particularly interesting because I've been working on a story about companies that are using the same combination of technologies—VCSEL lasers and SPAD detectors—to build much more powerful lidar for the automotive market. One of the big selling points of VCSELs and SPADs is that they can be created using conventional semiconductor fabrication techniques. As a result, they benefit from the huge economies of scale in the semiconductor industry. As VCSEL-based sensors become more common, they are likely to steadily get cheaper and better. Two of the companies working on high-end VCSEL-based lidar—Ouster and Ibeo—have already gotten more traction than most companies in the crowded lidar business. Apple's decision to adopt the technology—and the possibility that other smartphone vendors could follow Apple's lead—will provide them with a nice tailwind in the coming years. VCSELs helped Apple make radically simpler lidar Enlarge / Velodyne was a lidar pioneer with its early 64-laser lidar. Steve Jurvetson The first three-dimensional lidar sensor was introduced by Velodyne more than a decade ago. The spinning unit cost around $75,000 and was significantly larger than a smartphone. Apple needed to make lidar sensors radically cheaper and smaller in order to put one in each iPhone, and VCSELs helped the company do it. What's a VCSEL? If you're building a laser using conventional semiconductor fabrication techniques, you have two basic options. You can make a laser that transmits light out the side of the wafer (known as an edge-emitting laser) or from the top (a vertical cavity surface emitting laser, or VCSEL). Traditionally, edge-emitting lasers have been more powerful. VCSELs have been used for decades in everything from optical mice to optical networking gear. They were traditionally considered unsuitable for high-end applications where a lot of light was needed, but VCSELs have become more powerful as the technology has matured. Making an edge-emitting laser typically requires cutting the wafer to expose the emitter. This adds to the cost and complexity of the manufacturing process and limits the number of lasers that can be made on one wafer. by contrast, VCSELs emit light perpendicular to the wafer, so they don't need to be individually cut or packaged. This means that a single silicon chip can hold dozens, hundreds, or even thousands of VCSELs. In principle, a chip with thousands of VCSELs shouldn't cost more than a few dollars when produced at large scale. The story is similar with single photon avalanche diodes. As the name implies, these are sensitive enough to detect a single photon. High sensitivity means they suffer from a lot of noise. As a result, it takes sophisticated post-processing to use them for an application like lidar. But one big advantage of SPADs is that—like VCSELs—they can be fabricated using conventional semiconductor techniques, and thousands of them can be packed on a single chip. The combination of VCSELs and SPADs enables a dramatic simplification of conventional lidar designs. Velodyne's original three-dimensional lidar mounted 64 individually packaged lasers in a column on a spinning gimbal. Each laser had a matching detector. The complexity of this design and the need to precisely align each laser with its corresponding detector was one reason Velodyne's early lidar units were so expensive. More recently, a number of companies have experimented with using small mirrors to "steer" a laser beam in a scanning pattern. This design requires only a single laser instead of 64. But it still involves at least one moving part. By contrast, Apple, Ouster, and Ibeo are building lidar sensors with no moving parts at all. With hundreds or thousands of lasers on a chip, VCSEL-based lidars can have a dedicated laser for each point in the lidar's field of view. And because all of these lasers come pre-packaged on one chip, assembly is much simpler than for Velodyne's classic spinning design. Recent iPhones already had another 3-D sensor called the TrueDepth camera that enabled Apple's FaceID feature. It also used an array of VCSELs reportedly provided by Lumentum. TrueDepth works by projecting a grid of more than 30,000 dots onto a subject's face and then estimating the three-dimensional shape of the user's face based on the way the grid pattern was deformed. The iPad's lidar sensor projects many fewer laser dots than the TrueDepth camera. An iFixIt video made with an infrared camera showed the lidar projecting a grid of only a few hundred pixels. But while the TrueDepth pattern tries to guess depths based on the shape of the light that falls on a subject's face, the iPad's lidar sensor measures distances directly by measuring how long it takes for the light to bounce off an object and return to the camera. This process likely yields both better precision in depth measurements and also longer range. More powerful lidar also uses VCSELs and SPADs Enlarge / Ouster's OS-1 (left) and OS-2 lidar sensors. Ouster The performance of Apple's lidar is far behind high-end sensors sold by specialized lidar companies. Velodyne, the company that invented three-dimensional lidar, touts a range of more than 200 meters for its most powerful lidar, while Apple's sensor has a range of around five meters. Other VCSEL-based lidars are significantly more powerful than Apple's, too. Ouster's most powerful VCSEL-based lidar, for example, boasts a range around 100 meters for detecting objects with 10-percent reflectivity. Ouster's current sensors are all Velodyne-style spinning units. They have 16 to 128 VCSELs in a row on a single chip—this chip is then mounted vertically on a spinning gimbal like Velodyne's units. The simplicity of this solid-state design has allowed Ouster to undercut Velodyne on price and emerge as one of Velodyne's biggest rivals. But these spinning lidar sensors from Ouster still cost thousands of dollars—too expensive to use in mainstream cars, to say nothing of smartphones. Last week, Ouster announced plans to ship a new solid-state lidar with no moving parts. Instead of arranging 16 to 128 lasers in a row as in Ouster's current lidar, Ouster's new unit will have more than 20,000 VCSELs arranged in a two-dimensional grid. Ibeo is pursuing a similar strategy and may be ahead of Ouster. Ibeo designed the very first lidar ever shipped in a mass-market car—the Audi A8. That lidar was primitive, with only four lines of vertical resolution. But Ibeo is now developing a new model called ibeoNext that will have a laser grid that's 128 by 80 pixels—a bit smaller than Ouster's planned sensor but significantly larger than Ibeo's past offerings. Ibeo says its sensor will have a 150-meter range for objects with 10-percent reflectivity. A final contender that's worth mentioning here is Sense Photonics, which we covered back in January. Like the other companies we've discussed, Sense is using VCSELs and SPADs for its lidar. However, Sense is using a technique called micro-transfer printing to spread its lasers out. This allows the lasers to use more power without running into heat and eye safety problems. So far, Sense's lidars have not had long range, but Sense CEO Shauna McIntyre told Ars the company is aiming for 200-meter range for a forthcoming sensor that it will announced in early 2021. Lidar is about to invade the automotive market Enlarge / IbeoNext lidar. Ibeo Ibeo, Sense, and Ouster are all rolling out new, low-cost designs because they expect an explosion of demand from the automotive industry. Lidar sensors could dramatically improve vehicles' advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS). For example, many people see Tesla as having one of the industry's most advanced ADAS systems. But the company has a persistent problem with its vehicles crashing into stationary objects—occasionally with fatal results. Lidar is better than cameras or radar at detecting stationary objects, so adding lidar to cars could prevent many of these crashes while making ADAS systems more convenient for drivers. Until now, lidar was considered too expensive for the automotive market, but that has started to change, with multiple companies promising lidar sensors that cost less than $1,000 in the next few years. Ouster is aiming to have its ES2 sensor ready for mass automotive production in 2024. The company says it will initially cost $600 in volume, with the price falling to $100 in subsequent years. Ibeo hasn't announced a price for the IbeoNext, but the company says it has already scored a deal with Great Wall Motors, a major automaker in China, to begin volume manufacturing in 2022. Companies with non-VCSEL lidar designs are rushing into this market as well. One of the most prominent is Luminar, which announced a deal with Volvo in May. Volvo is aiming to have cars with Luminar lidar available in 2022. These designs have different strengths and weaknesses. So far, Luminar's lidar has boasted longer range—as much as 250 meters. This is possible because Luminar uses lasers at a wavelength of 1550nm—far outside the visible light range. The fluid in the human eye is opaque to 1550nm light, which means that Luminar's lidar can use a lot more laser power without creating an eye safety hazard. Luminar's lidar also offers a wider field of view than Ouster's. The biggest question for Luminar is whether it can hit its $1,000 price target. When I interviewed Luminar CEO Austin Russel two years ago, he said that Luminar would need to "get down to low single-digit thousands" to reach a mass market. I assumed this meant that Luminar's lidar cost more than "low single-digit thousands" at the time. But Luminar now says it's on track to get below $1,000 in the next few years. By contrast, Ouster and Ibeo shouldn't have too much trouble making its lidar cheap. The big challenge is likely to be achieving the 200 meter range that's generally considered necessary for autonomous operation at highway speeds. "VCSELs are not a very bright laser compared to a traditional lidar," Ouster CEO Angus Pacala told me in 2018. "If you make a physical model and you plug a SPAD array and a VCSEL array, you get really poor performance out." However, Pacala said, Ouster has come up with "some fundamental IP on many different levels" to make the combination work. Pacala said that included "exceptional" suppression of out-of-band light and "putting a huge amount of signal processing directly next to the SPADs" to help distinguish returned laser flashes from ambient noise. So the big challenge that Ouster, Ibeo, and Sense will face in the next couple of years is to push the performance of the VCSEL and SPAD combination enough to achieve the same 200-meter range touted by other lidars. If they can do it, then the low cost and simplicity of semiconductor chips might give them a decisive advantage. If they can't, they might be relegated to a lower tier of the market. The technology behind the iPhone lidar may be coming soon to cars
  17. iPhone 12 release date in October, but new iPads in September? 2020 sure is strange Apple may delay the iPhone 12 release date to October and November, but launch iPads and Apple Watch in September (Image credit: Future) "Where's the iPhone 12?" That's what everyone is going to be asking us on Tuesday, September 8 when new iPads and the Apple Watch 6 arrive without a new iPhone. That's at least our analysis of the world's collective reaction if sometimes-right Apple leaker, Jon Prosser, has nailed the timeline. He tweeted a list of the weeks Apple is expected to announce and release new hardware. It's not good news if you're eager to get your hands on the rumored iPhone 12 Pro 5G. That version will come last in the scheme of things. If true, the Apple Watch 6 and new iPads will come first – the week of September 7 –and arrive with considerably less than normal fanfare due to Covid-19, potentially as stealthy reveals via press release, like we saw with the iPhone SE 2020 in March. Now, assuming Prosser's release window is accurate, we're fully expecting the date to be Tuesday, September 8, because September 7 is a Monday and holiday in the US (Labor Day). It's also the timeframe that Apple usually has with a big launch event. But no new iPhone is mentioned for this first release date. (Image credit: The Apple Post) Usher in the iPhone 12 delay The iPhone 12 launch date is said to be five weeks later, the week of October 12 (it could be Tuesday, October 13). This isn't a big surprise, as Apple, in its earnings call last month, made the rare move of announcing the iPhone 12 delay. The iPhone 12 reveal is said to be coming at an 'event'. Whether that's in-person launch event or another 'Apple live stream' video like we saw with WWDC 2020 remains to be seen. We're expecting four versions of the new iPhone to show up. Some Pre-orders launch the same week – we're predicting October 16. Apple has a history of putting up pre-orders the Friday immediately after a launch event. And the iPhone 12 is said to go on sale the next week – so Friday, September 23. But, according to Prosser, the high-end iPhone 12 Pro won't be available in October whatsoever. Instead, this version will get a November pre-order and release date, with the leaker saying "no exact date yet" is "in the system." November is very late for a new iPhone, especially the versions (we're expecting two sizes) that early adopters want. The Pro is rumored to have the fastest 5G speeds and the biggest screens. But this isn't the first time Apple's latest and greatest iPhone has slipped into November. The iPhone X launched on Friday, November 3, 2017. Prosser nailed the iPhone SE 2020 release date and had the iMac 27-inch (2020) announcement ahead of time, but he did get many Apple WWDC leaks incorrect, and notes that the dates could always change on Apple's end. iPhone 12 release date in October, but new iPads in September? 2020 sure is strange
  18. iPhone users report massive battery drain issues on iOS 13.5.1 caused by Apple Music Users are reporting on Reddit and Apple’s forums (spotted by MacRumors) that Apple Music is significantly affecting their iPhones’ battery life, with some users seeing the app hog 85% of the total battery life. The original thread in the Cupertino giant’s support forum was created in April, but the responses have increased greatly in July. Apple released iOS 13.5.1 back in June that brought with it some security features, but reporting from last week suggests that the release does suffer from a bad battery drain issue. While initial responses suggested that the problem was caused by Apple Music trying to connect to the user’s Apple Watch, more reports, especially in the past few days have cited multiple reasons for the increased consumption. Interestingly, some users added that the background process was resource-intensive enough to prevent the phone from charging to 100%. The issue is also resulting in the phone heating up, as per other owners. Image: Warped (Apple Forums) There are currently no proven workarounds to this problem. Some users have had luck with uninstalling the app, while others have had to perform a hard reset. In some cases, turning off automatic downloads or disabling background app refresh helped solve the issue. It is also not clear if any recent server-side changes are causing this issue, as one of the responses hint at the recent DRM changes for Apple Music files causing this issue. The battery drain problem is affecting users on both old and new iPhone models, ruling out hardware issues. While the widespread problem has not been acknowledged by Apple yet, it is safe to assume that a fix would be rolled out with the iOS 13.6 release that is currently in beta, in case the issue is caused by an OS bug. iPhone users report massive battery drain issues on iOS 13.5.1 caused by Apple Music
  19. Apple makes it easier and cheaper to get your iPhone repair done by anyone Independent businesses can register free of charge to perform official iPhone repair jobs (Image credit: Future) Apple is expanding a programme which allows independent businesses to register to perform approved iPhone repair jobs into Europe and Canada. The company has been criticised in the past for making its devices difficult or expensive to repair through official channels or for third parties to gain access to genuine parts. This has increased demand for third party components and repairs which can affect device functionality. Access to repairs has become an increasingly important consideration for customers who are holding now onto their devices for longer. This is partly because of the high cost of new devices but also because of the lack of a compelling reason to upgrade. iPhone repair There is also the question of sustainability. Discarded devices may not be recycled properly, contributing to a growing e-waste problem and increasing demand for rare metals that are required for the manufacturing of new handsets. In a bid to remedy the situation, Apple introduced the Apple Independent Repair Provider Program last Autumn in the US. The programme allows businesses to register as an official repair service and gain access to official parts. There is no sign-up fee although applicants must have an Apple-approved technician. The initiative has been popular, with Apple securing 140 independent repair companies as partners and adding more than 700 locations across the US. Now the programme is being extended to 32 nations in Europe and across the border into Canada. “We are thrilled to expand our independent repair program to more locations across the US and to businesses across Europe and Canada,” said Jeff Williams, Apple’s chief operating officer. “When a customer needs a repair, we want them to have a range of options that not only suits their needs but also guarantees safety and quality so their iPhone can be used for as long as possible.” Apple makes it easier and cheaper to get your iPhone repair done by anyone
  20. Unreal’s new iPhone app does live motion capture with Face ID sensors It's another rare, killer app for the iPhone's TrueDepth sensor array. Unreal Engine developer Epic Games has released Live Link Face, an iPhone app that uses the front-facing 3D sensors in the phone to do live motion capture for facial animations in 3D projects like video games, animations, or films. The app uses tools from Apple's ARKit framework and the iPhone's TrueDepth sensor array to stream live motion capture from an actor looking at the phone to 3D characters in Unreal Engine running on a nearby workstation. It captures facial expressions as well as head and neck rotation. Live Link Face can stream to multiple machines at once, and "robust timecode support and precise frame accuracy enable seamless synchronization with other stage components like cameras and body motion capture," according to Epic's blog post announcing the app. Users get a CSV of raw blendshape data and an MOV from the phone's front-facing video camera, with timecodes. To many, the iPhone's TrueDepth sensor array seemed like a solution in search of a problem—Touch ID worked just fine for most peoples' purposes in earlier iPhones, and there weren't many clear applications of the technology besides Face ID. Sure, there were Animojis, and a lot of people enjoy them—but most wouldn't say they single-handedly justify the technology. But here's a clear selling point, albeit for a narrow audience: indie game developers and filmmakers can use apps like this on the iPhone for motion capture, bringing virtual characters to life with the facial expressions and other motions of real human actors. That's something that traditionally involved expensively equipped studios that are out of reach for all but the big players. The motion capture the iPhone's sensors can manage is not as accurate as what's used by triple-A game development studios or major motion pictures, of course, so those high-end studios won't be dropping their kitted-out mo-cap studios for iPhones right now. But now, individual creators and smaller teams can do something that was cost-prohibitive before. That's not really a consumer use case, per se, though. So far, these sensors have mainly been used by Apple and third-party app developers to make AR apps and photo filters more accurate. Apple recently added a lidar sensor to the iPad Pro, and rumors abound on the Internet that it will make its way to top iPhone models, too. While the iPad Pro's rear sensors use a different technology than the front-facing TrueDepth array, it can generate a similar result. Apple has already demonstrated the iPad Pro's rear sensors recording motion capture from a person—albeit the person's whole body, not their face. For those not familiar, Unreal Engine began life as a graphics engine used by triple-A video game studios for titles like Gears of War and Mass Effect, and it has evolved over time to be used by indies and in other situations like filmmaking, architecture, and design. It competes with another popular engine called Unity, as well as in-house tools developed by various studios. Listing image by Epic Games Unreal’s new iPhone app does live motion capture with Face ID sensors
  21. By Kate O'Flaherty Have you received a “weak Wi-Fi security” warning on your iPhone since upgrading to iOS 14? You are not alone, here’s what it means and how to fix it. Have you received a “weak Wi-Fi security” warning on your iPhone since upgrading to iOS 14? You are not alone, here’s what it means and how to fix it. Since upgrading to iOS 14, many users are reporting seeing a warning on their iPhone that says their Wi-Fi has “weak security.” The message, which appears under the Wi-Fi network name on your iPhone, states that WPA/WPA2 TKIP is “not considered secure” and you need to reconfigure your router. Confusing, huh. So what should you do? Firstly, there is no need to panic. Yes, Apple is telling you that the Wi-Fi network you’re using to connect your iPhone isn’t secure. But specifically it means that your connection is not as robust as the latest up to date standard—it doesn’t mean a hacker is inside your router and has compromised your iPhone and other devices. Wi-Fi security broken down Wi-Fi is governed by security protocols, which are updated to fix weaknesses in the previous iteration. The oldest (from the 1990s) and least secure is WEP. The next step up is WPA, then WPA2—either TKIP or AES. WPA2 AES is a lot stronger than WPA2 TKIP but both are a common standard used on today’s routers. WPA3, meanwhile, is the newest “gold” standard, and ideally what everyone should be on. But this isn’t a game-changer especially if you are just a home user. In addition, some older routers don’t even support the WPA3. However, it’s a good idea to ensure your router is as secure as possible. If you are feeling brave, you can update your router by changing its settings. Sure, this isn’t always as straight-forward as it sounds, but if you have a copy of your manual you need to look up how to download the last firmware and software updates, and make sure you are doing so regularly. If you are fairly tech-savvy, this guide by Sergey Shcherban is pretty useful, if you want to try and update your Wi-Fi settings yourself. And if you haven’t yet, make sure you set your password to something new—never use the default that came with the device. iOS 14 boosts privacy and security Apple’s iOS 14 comes with a host of privacy and security settings, such as an orange dot to tell you when an app is accessing your mic. I’ve outlined some of the key features, and how to use them in my iOS 14 guide. In addition, iOS 14 gives you the ability to mask your iPhone’s Wi-Fi address to help prevent your activity being tracked when using wireless networks. Overall, the key takeaway is, if you receive the “weak security” warning on your iPhone, don’t be alarmed. If you use a very old protocol, such as WEP, it might be time to get a new router—but otherwise it should be fixable. Source
  22. Apple added a secret button to your iPhone, and you may not have even noticed Button of the Month: iOS 14’s Back Tap This story is part of a group of stories called In today’s digital age, it sometimes feels like hardware has taken a back seat to the software that drives our devices. Button of the Month is a monthly column that explores the physical pieces of our phones, tablets, and controllers that we interact with every day. Your iPhone got a new button last month, and you may not have even noticed. No, Apple didn’t sneak into your house and secretly superglue a button onto your smartphone. But it did release iOS 14, the latest version of its iPhone software, which includes a feature called Back Tap. Back Tap adds a fascinating new “button” to your phone that blurs the line between hardware and software. Back Tap turns the entire back of your iPhone into a giant touch-sensitive button that you can double or triple tap to trigger specific functions on your phone. There’s a good chance that you haven’t noticed it yet. Apple slipped the settings for Back Tap into its Accessibility menu. Its intended purpose is to give users more options for interacting with their devices. Most of Back Tap’s options reflect that, with settings to open the app switcher, notification menu, or control center; scroll through an app or webpage; trigger Siri; or take a screenshot. But Back Tap also ties into Apple’s incredibly robust Shortcuts app, which means you can effectively make those new buttons do almost anything you can imagine. It’s a fascinating kind of button: entirely invisible to the naked eye, completely nonfunctional until it’s enabled through software, but can be tasked to open, interact with, or accomplish nearly any task on your smartphone with just a quick tap. That software customization is key. It’s easy to imagine a world where Apple limited Back Tap to just a few preset options focused on making the iPhone UI more accessible. But by opening it up to Shortcuts, the company turned Back Tap into a tool of limitless creativity, letting users come up with their own ways to take advantage of the new button on the back of their devices. (It’s not just Apple. Google experimented with a similar, albeit more limited, feature for Android 11, although it didn’t end up making the final cut. Some enterprising developers have since replicated the feature for any Android device.) This is also a level of control that’s almost unheard of for iOS devices. Imagine if Apple let you remap the side button (for Siri and Apple Pay) on an iPhone 12 to, say, launch Google Assistant or send a preset text message to your partner. It’s practically unthinkable. It works well, too. The software is responsive, and whatever Apple’s doing to differentiate between an intentional tap and just regularly holding your phone, it works well. I’ve found it particularly useful for triggering Control Center to quickly toggle system settings. Back Tap repurposes the existing sensors and hardware on your iPhone with software to create a new hardware interaction that wasn’t available before. It’s a new physical button users can interact with — but one that’s almost completely free of Apple’s limitations. Physical buttons, of course, are the most direct form of interaction. It’s why Samsung insists on a bespoke Bixby button and why Netflix pays for a spot on your Roku remote. And while Apple may not quite be willing to give up control of the physical buttons on your iPhone, Back Tap — with its almost button — is the next best thing. Apple added a secret button to your iPhone, and you may not have even noticed
  23. Apple’s iPhone has an aggravating text notifications bug An iOS 14 bug doesn’t show notifications when some new messages arrive Photo by Amelia Holowaty Krales / The Verge If you’ve noticed that you’re receiving SMS texts and iMessages from people but aren’t getting any notifications about them, you’re not alone. Far from it. I’m one of many people experiencing an annoying bug where messages come through fine — but without any pop-up notification or even the usual red badge to indicate that there’s a new message waiting to be read. Last month, MacRumors wrote about increasing reports of the problem on the new iPhone 12, 12 mini, 12 Pro, and 12 Pro Max phones. But it seems to also be affecting people with older iPhones as well, so this is looking more and more like an iOS 14 issue. What’s more aggravating about the glitch is that it doesn't always happen. I’ve noticed some messages pop up on my lock screen like normal, but others just quietly roll in with me being none the wiser. People in that very large MacRumors thread have tried to come up with workarounds like turning off Messages on a Mac, or deleting and re-adding contacts. Some are noticing they get notifications if they completely force close the Messages app every time after sending a text. And in other cases, the missing notifications are only happening for pinned conversations, and unpinning contacts seems to do the trick. There are sporadic reports of success with these short-term fixes, but they aren’t working for everyone. There’s also this 42-page thread on the company’s support forums about the ongoing frustrations. Those dealing with the issue are understandably disappointed that Apple hasn’t released a thorough fix yet. This is pretty fundamental stuff, and it’s probably causing some awkward conversations between couples or friends when messages just sit there for hours without the recipient knowing they came. And if you’re hoping that all will be well when iOS 14.3 releases next week, I wouldn’t be so sure. Early reports indicate that the no-text-notifications bug remains present — at least in some cases — in the second release candidate build of iOS 14.3 that Apple pushed out to public beta testers yesterday. The Verge has reached out to Apple for more information on the status of this bug and the company’s plans to resolve it. Apple’s iPhone has an aggravating text notifications bug
  24. How to share location on iPhone Whether it's to say you're home safe, or that you're on your way, you can get your iPhone to tell someone exactly where you are. Here's what you have to do. Usually the complaint is that too much location data is being shared by various apps on your iPhone, but sometimes you actively want to tell people where you are. Maybe you're meeting colleagues, maybe you want your partner to know you've safely arrived somewhere. You decide whether they get your location once, or permanently. And you start by setting up your iPhone to allow location sharing. How to set up your iPhone to share location Go to Settings on your iPhone Scroll to Privacy and tap Tap on Location Services Turn the feature on While you're in this Location Services section of Settings, you can do more. With one certain limitation, you can set your iPhone so that a nominated person can always find where you are. The limitation is that the person has to be a member of your family. That is, you have to have set them up as such using Family Sharing. You can't just add any contact you have to it, at least not in this section. That is a limitation, but it's a decent trade off with security, since anyone you choose here can check your location whenever they want to. First you have to enable the ability to share your location How to permanently share your location with someone In Location Services section of Settings, tap on Share My Location Under the Family heading, tap on a person you want to share with On the contact details page that appears, scroll to the very bottom and tap Share My Location If you later want to change your mind, repeat the same steps but now tap on what has become Stop Sharing My Location. Perhaps much more often than this permanent ability for someone to see where you are, though, is the temporary option. You're all arranging to meet up at a certain place and you want people to be able to find you there. How to send your location on iPhone right now with Messages Open Messages and start a conversation Tap on the person's name at the top of the screen Now tap on the i button that appears under their name Tap on Send My Current Location This is how you do it with sending to an individual, but it's precisely the same when you want to send to a group. Just make sure that you have begun a Message conversation with all of the people concerned. There is a second option here, which is Share My Location. That seems the same as the one you set up in Settings, but it's subtly and significantly different. This version lets you share with anyone in Messages, regardless of whether they are in your family or not. Plus it also lets you decide how long you want them to know where you are. If someone is set up as being in your family, you can have them permanently able to see where you are How to share location for a specific amount of time Open Messages and start a conversation Tap on the person's name at the top of the screen Now tap on the i button that appears under their name Tap on Share My Location Choose from Share Indefinitely, Share Until End of Day, or Share for One Hour So this is how, for instance, you can have it so that your boss always knows where you are. More usefully, and less creepily, it is how the group you're meeting can find you even when one of them is running late. You can do a similar thing outside Messages, by finding someone in your Contacts list and tapping on Share My Location. You get a different form of popup about how long you want to share for, but the options are the same. Open Apple Maps, tap on the blue dot representing you, and you can share your current location immediately Share your location via Apple Maps Open Apple Maps and tap on the small blue dot that represents you A panel appears details of your location, and options including Share My Location Tap on Share My Location Choose how you want to share it (via Messages, for instance) Choose who to send it to When a thumbnail map appears in the message area, tap the blue arrow to send it When you tap Share My Location in Apple Maps, and you get offered options of how to share it, this is really a standard Share sheet. So as well as methods of sending the information to other people over Messages or Mail, you may first get offered options like AirDrop, or even your To Do app. Neither is likely to be terribly useful, as if someone who wants to know where you are is within AirDrop range, they can probably see you. Nonetheless, it can be useful to share to a text file or a To Do app so that later on you can share all of your locations to someone. Say you want to log where you've been for expenses, it's harder to deny map location data than it is your list of receipts. Keep up with AppleInsider by downloading the AppleInsider app for iOS, and follow us on YouTube, Twitter @appleinsider and Facebook for live, late-breaking coverage. You can also check out our official Instagram account for exclusive photos. Source: How to share location on iPhone
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