An analyst with historically off-target guesses about Apple's hardware intentions and supply chain machinations is claiming that the "iPhone 8" will not only ship later than expected because of Touch ID supply problems, but also claims that full manufacturing won't fully ramp up until the first calendar quarter of 2018.
One of the designers behind the Apple Watch, Marc Newson, has crafted a special-edition hourglass priced at a whopping $12,000. Swiss luxury watchmaker H. Moser & Cie., meanwhile, has launched a new mechanical piece designed to resemble the Apple Watch itself.
If you want a thorough, everyday clean, maybe you should consider using robots. The Roomba 650 Vacuuming Robot provides a thorough clean at the push of a button. The patented, 3-Stage Cleaning System easily picks up dust, pet hair and large debris like cereal and works on all floor types, adjusting itself and re-charging itself as needed to make sure the job is done correctly every time you need it -- preset Roomba to clean when it’s convenient for you. Roomba is just 3.6 inch tall, and is specifically designed to fit under most furniture, beds and kickboards. The 650 model is a #1 best seller on Amazon, where its typical list price of $374 is reduced right now to $286.99. See this deal on Amazon.
This week's cover of The New Yorker has been sketched using an iPad and Apple Pencil, created by illustrator Jorge Colombo. The image depicts Brooklyn Bridge Park in Brooklyn Heights that Colombo frequents, with the artwork capturing a couple of basketball games and spectators at the park.
Apple CEO Tim Cook shared The New Yorker cover on Twitter this morning, with a quote from Colombo who mentioned his fear that one of the basketballs would fly near him and hit his iPad.
It’s one of my favorite places to hang out,” Jorge Colombo says, about the park he sketched, on an iPad, for the cover of this week’s issue. “I live down the street, in Brooklyn Heights, so I go there all the time, either to take the East River Ferry or just to relax by the water.
It is a magnet—people come from all of Brooklyn’s many neighborhoods just to take a selfie by the waterfront or picnic by the water. This was a risky drawing to make, though: I kept worrying that the ball would hit me or the iPad.”
The New Yorker also shared a video of Colombo's illustration process on its website this week. Apple's iPad and Apple Pencil have been celebrated as tools for artists in the past, with Apple recently highlighting Rob Zilla's NBA illustrations. Apple's tablet was even used to create the poster for Stranger Things on Netflix.
I’ve reviewed several home security cameras over the years, and always grapple with where to mount them close to a required electrical outlet. After all, wires can be severed or simply unplugged, disabling a camera before it ever has a chance to catch a glimpse of potential intruders.
Although Wi-Fi allows cameras to have one less tether, manufacturers mostly disregard the real elephant in the room—until now. The folks at Reolink have introduced the world’s first battery-powered security camera, offering the freedom to move it anywhere around the home.
Cut the cord
Reolink Keen ($130 on Amazon) is a security camera powered entirely by four included CR123A batteries, powerful 3.0-volt cells typically reserved for photo accessories. There’s no AC power option, so you’ll want to keep a backup supply of these less common batteries on hand. Under normal conditions, a set of these batteries can power Keen for up to six months in standby mode.
Potentially confirming rumored details about the "iPhone 8," a report claims that a TSMC representative spoke out about specific details about the new device at the NA Technology Symposium on Thursday.
Sandie Baron has a iPad and a Windows 10 system, and wondered how to use Apple’s two-factor authentication (2FA) with that setup. Apple doesn’t offer 2FA tools under Windows, but you don’t need a Mac or a second iOS device to get the advantages.
Setting up 2FA on a single device is relatively easy, because the assumption is that you don’t have a second device ready yet, and you can validate yourself through a code sent via text message or read aloud to you by a computer-generated voice on a call placed to a phone number you provide.
After that, any attempt to log into an account on an iOS or macOS device that isn’t yet trusted (or hasn’t been recently validated) results in a location dialog on all of your iOS and macOS devices that are linked to the same Apple ID asking you to allow or reject the authentication request.
Apple has successfully finalized a solution to integrate Touch ID fingerprint recognition directly into the display of its upcoming "iPhone 8", according to a new report on Friday.
Chinese-language Economic Daily News (EDN) said it spoke to sources from Apple supplier Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), who apparently confirmed Apple's achievement during a technology convention held in Taipei on Thursday.
Among several design changes TSMC reportedly discussed at the TSMC 2017 NA Technology Symposium was the lack of a home button on the redesigned OLED iPhone, owing to Apple's use of "an optical fingerprint sensor to enable authentication directly on the screen" in the absence of a physical Home button.
In addition to the fingerprint recognition, the sources claimed the new iPhones will also come with "invisible infrared image sensors to enhance the functionality of the high-pixel camera" and to enable augmented reality functions.
If true, news of Apple's on-screen fingerprint recognition solution will come as a relief to watchers tracking the development of Apple's "tenth anniversary" edition iPhone. Reports that the company has been researching ways to integrate fingerprint sensors directly into screens go as far back as June 2015, but more recent sources have claimed Apple has struggled to find a solution that overcomes the production challenges involved.
The security of existing face and iris recognition technology has already come into question, while the idea of a rear-mounted Touch ID fingerprint sensor has received a largely negative response from current iPhone users. Suggestions that Apple could announce the OLED iPhone in September alongside typical "S" cycle iPhones but delay its availability have also been met with skepticism.
Additionally, today's news also lines up with previous rumors claiming Apple has been aiming to finalize its fingerprint sensor specification in May all along, in time for mass production in late July, which would fall in line with the company's usual annual iPhone production timeframe.
The other design changes mentioned by sources at TSMC suggest additional biometric authentication such as iris/facial recognition could be used to augment Touch ID via a high pixel-density front-facing camera, which is expected to feature next-generation 3D-sensing capabilities powered by PrimeSense technology. The report also claims the screen ratio of the displays on the new iPhones will be adjusted to 18.5:9 instead of the previous 16:9.
The "iPhone 8" is thought to have a redesigned steel and glass chassis, an edge-to-edge OLED display, and could carry a "premium" price, compared to previous models. Apple is expected to debut the new iPhone in the fall alongside updated versions of its current 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch device lineup.
When you set up a new iPhone or iPad, a few screens walk you through some of the most important settings for the device. You’re asked to enter your Apple ID and password; you’re asked if you want to use location services; and you get queried about Siri. But beyond that, iOS starts working with a slew of default settings. It’s up to you to find them, figure them out, and tweak them.
Unfortunately, the iOS Settings app can be confusing. It’s hard to find what you need to change, and some settings are buried in sub-sub-sub-menus.
I count 44 different top-level settings categories on my iPhone, and then 84 more because third-party apps also have entries, many of which contain options that are also found in the Location, Notifications, Background App Refresh, Cellular Data, and Privacy settings. Few of them contain any actual app settings, and those that do also provide access to those settings from the individual apps. If I add up the iOS settings and the app settings, I have a total of 128 top-level entries in the Settings app. And many users will have more than that, because they have more apps on their devices.
Since it first introduced HomeKit back in 2014, Apple has been dancing around the idea of the smart home and automation. Since then, it’s expanded its offerings bit-by-bit. It added the Home app in 2016, finally putting a front-end interface on controlling smart home tech and adding the ability to use the Apple TV as a home automation hub.
But despite those improvements, HomeKit has yet to really catch on. It’s still missing more than a few pieces, but with the annual Worldwide Developers Conference just over a week away, it’s possible the company has something up its sleeves to finally turn the smart house into a smart home.
The home hub
I’ve spilled plenty of ink on a theoretical Siri Speaker elsewhere, but the lack of a real home hub is part of why I think HomeKit feels so unanchored. Using the Apple TV (or an iPad) feels like a stopgap measure, chosen simply because they’re devices that are almost always on and connected to your local network.
An iPhone 6s is being credited with saving the life of a woman who was injured in Monday's terrorist attack in Manchester, England, after the device deflected and slowed down shrapnel from the bomb blast.
Offering a better perspective of the physical dimensions consumers can expect from Apple's forthcoming "iPhone 8," a report on Thursday compares an aftermarket case supposedly built for the device against current-generation iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus models.
This Memorial Day weekend, save up to $225 on popular 13" and 15" MacBook Pros when you pair instant discounts with exclusive coupons. Or snap up a 9.7" iPad Pro with LTE capability for $599 ($130 off). Apple's high-end 12" MacBook is also $250 off with no tax outside NY and NJ.
A new study from Stanford University found Apple Watch to carry the most accurate heart rate monitor out of seven popular fitness trackers. The results come amidst rumors of a "Series 3" device that could launch later this year.
This 76-piece repair kit contains everything you need to work on your smartphone, tablet, laptop, stereo, or anything else that requires precision instruments. Everything from screwdrivers, to a suction cup to a plastic spudger, whatever that might be. This kit is highly rated and a #1 best seller on Amazon, where its typical list price of $69.99 has been reduced 63% to $25.99. See this deal now on Amazon.
Though the launch of the "iPhone 8" is months away, case makers have already started creating cases for the device based on leaked design renderings and schematics.
A case designed for the iPhone 8 surfaced on Alibaba, and was purchased by Japanese site Mac Otakara for a series of images and a video. We've already seen some iPhone 8 cases so the design shouldn't come as a surprise, but this particular case includes comparisons to both the iPhone 7 and the iPhone 7 Plus, giving us a clear picture of how the iPhone 8 might fit into the iPhone lineup if the case design is an accurate representation of the finalized device.
As can be seen in the images, the case is a good deal smaller than the iPhone 7 Plus, but slightly larger than the iPhone 7. That's in line with rumors suggesting the iPhone 8 will be similar in size to the iPhone 7, but with a display that's much larger (and edge-to-edge), closer in size to the iPhone 7 Plus display.
An iPhone 7 placed directly inside the case suggests the iPhone 8 will be about the same width as the iPhone 7, but quite a bit taller. Rumors have also suggested the iPhone 8 will be slightly thicker than the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus, and Mac Otakara says the iPhone 7 is noticeably thinner, with the case being "quite loose feeling."
Leaked design renderings and schematics have suggested the iPhone 8 could measure in at 144mm tall, 71mm wide, and 7.7mm thick, compared to the iPhone 7 dimensions of 138.3 x 67.1 x 7.1mm.
The case features a vertical camera cutout to accommodate a rumored vertical dual-lens camera, which may be larger in size than the camera in the iPhone 7 Plus, based on a comparison.
Volume buttons, the power button, and other ports seem to be in generally the same location as the current iPhone 7, with some small variations. The volume buttons and the mute switch are the same size as the buttons on the iPhone 7, but the spacing is slightly different.
Because Apple has tested multiple iPhone 8 prototypes, it's difficult to determine whether this case accurately depicts the final design of the device. Most of the rumors and design leaks have centered on a device that's similar to the iPhone 8 case Mac Otakara purchased, with no visible Touch ID button, but we've also seen leaks featuring an aluminum device with a rear Touch ID button.
Once we start seeing legitimate part leaks, we should have a much better idea of what to expect when Apple introduces the iPhone 8 this fall.
WWDC 2017 will be televised... or, live-streamed to be more exact.
Apple has confirmed that you will be able to live-stream the keynote for the Worldwide Developers Conference. Apple’s first event of the year is scheduled to kick off with a keynote on Monday, June 5 at 10 a.m. PT.
This year’s WWDC is being held June 5-9 at the McEnery Convention Center in downtown San Jose, California. In addition to the keynote, Apple has previously uploaded videos of several conference sessions so you can watch them online.
Here’s how: Bookmark this page on Apple.com and you’ll be all set. There’s even a link that will download a calendar invite so you can be reminded when it’s time to tune in.
Apple will introduce the next-generation version of iOS, iOS 11, on June 5 at its Worldwide Developers Conference. While WWDC is less than two weeks away, we've haven't heard many details on what we can expect.
There's talk about an overhauled design and an updated user interface along with rumors of new functionality for the iPad, but beyond that, we don't know what's coming, and we don't know what that new user interface will look like. In the absence of rumors, we've taken a look at some of the most-desired features MacRumors readers are hoping for in iOS 11, culled from our forums.
Unsurprisingly, many readers are looking forward to a new design and an overhauled interface. Here are some of the things readers want in a design refresh:
- Animated icons - Allowing developers to add small animations to app icons is something that iOS users have been wanting for several years. With access to subtle animations, apps like Fantastical could feature an icon with the current date, or third-party weather apps could display the current temperature.
- iPhone complications - The Apple Watch interface features multiple complications or small icons that let Apple Watch users glean information at a glance. On the iPhone, complications could be added to the lock screen or the Home screen to serve the same function, letting users see information like weather or activity level without needing to open an app.
- Customizable Control Center - iOS 10 made a mess of the Control Center, splitting it into three screens. MacRumors readers are hoping for a more unified design with the ability to choose what icons and functions are displayed. Expanded 3D Touch for more granular control over Control Center options would also improve the Control Center.
- Call interface - When an incoming phone or FaceTime call is received on an iPhone, it takes over the entire display with a call interface, something people would like to see changed in iOS 11. A call interface that pops up over what a user is doing instead of domineering the entire iPhone is a feature several readers mentioned wanting.
- Volume interface - On a similar note, there's a lot of hate towards the current volume display that pops up when the volume is adjusted on the iPhone because it's a giant icon in the middle of the screen. Something subtler and less intrusive is at the top of several wish lists.
- Widgets - Android-style Home screen live tiles or widgets are another feature that some iOS users have long desired. Apple added widgets to the Notification Center on the iPhone, but some readers want a more integrated, customizable solution directly on the Home screen.
- Keyboard - Users who prefer a swipe-based keyboard (where typing is done by swiping across the screen) would like to see that added as an option. A top number row across the default keyboard is also highly desired.
- Dark mode - Dark mode was a feature rumored for iOS 10 that never materialized, and MacRumors readers are hoping to see it in iOS 11. A system-wide dark mode that comes on at sunset is something a lot of people want, and with an overhauled interface rumored for iOS 11, it could happen.
- iPhone 7 Plus multitasking features - Some users would like to see the iPad's multitasking features expanded to the iPhone 7 Plus, including Split View, which allows two apps to be used at once, and picture-in-picture, which allows a video to be watched in the corner of the display while other apps are in use. With a larger 5.8-inch display rumored for the OLED iPhone, it doesn't seem out of the question.
Split-View multitasking on iPad
Along with the above listed design changes, there are also wish lists for individual apps, Siri, and other internal features, ranging from notifications to Continuity.
Many MacRumors readers want to see some significant improvements to the Photos app, which got a major overhaul in iOS 10. Facial recognition was added, allowing iOS devices to automatically recognize the people in photos and group them accordingly, but the feature is on-device only and does not sync for privacy reasons.
Some users want the People option to sync across devices for convenience purposes, while others want to be able to choose specific albums to sync to iCloud Photo Library. Other desired features include options to fully hide photos from albums and options for manually adding things like keywords and location.
Several camera settings for adjusting video and other options are tucked away in the Settings app, and several readers would like to see those options added to the Camera app instead, where accessing them would be much easier.
An option for manual controls in the Camera app is also a requested feature, as it would allow users to have more control over photos without needing to download a third-party app.
iOS users would like to see an option for offline Maps and multi-destination routes in iOS 11, two features that are available in Google Maps.
Along with an overhauled interface, a better version of Siri seems to be one of the features people are most hoping for in iOS 11. The good news is that Apple's rumored to be working on some major Siri improvements, and it's likely we'll see something Siri-related in iOS 11.
- Text-based Siri - A Siri assistant would allow people who don't want to talk to their phones to interact with Siri via text, sort of like a chatbot. Google just introduced chatbot abilities for Google Assistant, and introduced a Google Assistant iOS app, which could inspire Apple to release a similar feature.
- Unified Search - A merged Siri and Spotlight Search feature goes hand-in-hand with a text-based Siri assistant. The search function could be updated to support Siri-style commands that could be typed into the current search interface.
- Offline Siri - Some users would like to be able to use Siri when the iPhone is offline for tasks that are able to be accomplished without an Internet connection.
- Extended SiriKit - Opening up SiriKit to more kinds of apps would expand Siri's capabilities.
File management - Several MacRumors readers mentioned a desire for a better file management system that would make it easier to transfer content between apps. MacStories' Federico Vittici made a mockup featuring a drag and drop interface and a file storage shelf on the iPad that would be an ideal way for Apple to implement simpler file sharing options.
- Notification grouping - A lot of people hate the way notifications are handled on iOS. Options for grouping notifications by app would go a long way towards cleaning up the Notification Center.
- Default apps - While it probably won't happen, MacRumors readers would like to see an option to set non-Apple default apps, like choosing Chrome for the default browser or Google Maps for the default mapping app.
- Improved Continuity - For those of us with multiple devices, Apple's Continuity features that let tasks be transferred from one device to another are super useful. Improvements to make existing Continuity features more reliable would be nice, as would support for ongoing media -- the ability to transfer a call in progress, or a movie that's playing.
Another thoughtful Continuity suggestion involves the Mac and native support for using the iPad as a secondary Mac display, functionality that's currently enabled through third-party apps like Duet Display. Apple could also potentially add support for connecting an iPad to a Mac to enable drawing features, allowing it to serve as a substitute for a Wacom tablet. That's another third-party feature that's already available through apps like Astropad.
- Multi-user support - Support for multiple users on the iPad has been a long-desired feature, but Apple has thus far declined to implement it outside of a classroom setting.
- Touch ID for locking apps - Third-party developers can use Touch ID as a second layer of security for locking iOS apps, but some users would like to see this feature expanded to encompass all apps. The option to lock apps like Photos with Touch ID would prevent them from being accessed without a fingerprint or a password even if someone bypassed an iPhone passcode.
Apple will unveil iOS 11 on June 5, the day of its WWDC keynote event. The update will be provided to developers immediately, while Public Beta testers can expect access later this summer. iOS 11 will be officially released this fall alongside new iPhones.
Apple on Thursday took the unusual step of releasing a new video in its animated series for Earth Day 2017 -- over a month after the actual holiday, but alongside an executive's appearance at an environmental connection in Detroit.
Gatwick Airport, the second-busiest airport in the United Kingdom, is making it easier for passengers to navigate its two terminals with the installation of around 2,000 beacons, initially providing iPhone users their location on indoor maps, with the system also allowing for the use of augmented reality wayfinding in the future.
Apple on Thursday issued an update to the official Apple Events app for tvOS, including a new icon based on the WWDC 2017 logo, and a teaser letting users know they will be able to stream the June 5 keynote -- expected to feature the unveiling of iOS 11 -- live from their Apple TV.
If you’re serious about protecting your PC—and any unsaved work or game you might have open on it—you need an uninterruptible power supply (UPS). A UPS is a surge protector and emergency battery in one, meant to keep devices safe and humming along when the power goes out. Right now, Newegg has a particularly good model on sale: The retailer has dropped the CyberPower GX1325U to just $125. That's $65 cheaper than the going price at other retailers.
This UPS is an 1325 VA / 810 watt unit with pure sine wave output. That last bit isn’t a pop quiz from high school—a pure sine wave is supposed to offer a more reliable transition from your local electrical grid to battery power, especially for sensitive PC power supplies. It’s also the most expensive type of output to produce, which is part of the reason it’s nice to catch this UPS on sale.
Apple today added a new events page to its main website, confirming that its June 5 Worldwide Developers Conference will be live streamed and available to watch on the Apple website and through the Apple TV.
Apple previously said it would provide a live stream of the Worldwide Developers Conference through its Apple Developer website and through the WWDC app, but the new event page makes it clear the keynote event will be available for all to watch even without a developer account.
WWDC 2017 is looking like it will be one of the most exciting conferences we've had in years. Along with introducing new versions of iOS, macOS, tvOS, and watchOS, there are rumors suggesting Apple will introduce new hardware.
New MacBooks and MacBook Pro models are expected, and there's a chance Apple will also introduce a refreshed MacBook Air. Rumors suggest the notebooks will feature more powerful processors and perhaps some other internal upgrades, but no design changes will be included.
Along with new MacBooks, Apple may also introduce two much-rumored products, the 10.5-inch iPad Pro and the Siri speaker. The 10.5-inch iPad Pro is said to feature a bigger display in a body that's similar in size to the current 9.7-inch iPad Pro, made possible through much smaller bezels.
Apple's Siri speaker is the company's answer to the popular Amazon Echo, and it is expected to feature Siri integration, superior sound quality, and perhaps a touch display.
For the June 5 keynote event, MacRumors will provide a live blog both here on MacRumors.com and on our MacRumorsLive Twitter account, along with detailed coverage of everything Apple announces during the week.
The ad was created by Apple environment lead Lisa Jackson and her team to mark Apple's attendance at Sustainable Brands 2017, a Detroit conference for business leaders committed to brand value creation through sustainability.
Sarah Chandler, Apple's Director of Operations and Environmental Initiatives, was in Detroit to speak at the event, where she talked about Apple's latest pledge to achieve a closed-loop supply chain. Chandler works under Lisa Jackson and is responsible for Apple's effort to use greener materials, conserve finite resources, and reduce the environmental impact of the company's supply chain.
Apple first announced its goal to use 100 percent recycled materials for products ahead of Earth Day, with the publishing of its 2017 Environmental Responsibility Report. Apple's eventual goal is to stop mining the earth for rare minerals and metals by focusing more heavily on recycled products.
"We're actually doing something we rarely do, which is announce a goal before we've figured out how to do it," Lisa Jackson said in April. "So we're a little nervous, but we also think it's really important, because as a sector we believe it's where technology should be going."
Liam, the robot featured in today's extra Earth Day video, will play an important role helping Apple reach its goal. Apple plans to double down on technologies like Liam, as well as put more effort into emphasizing its Apple Renew recycling program.
Addressing a feature lacking native support from iOS, developer Readdle has announced a new drag-and-drop feature for its own apps, including PDF Expert, Spark and Scanner Pro, that works in the iPad's split-screen multitasking view.
Lauren Kern, Executive Editor at New York Magazine, has been named as the first editor-in-chief of Apple News, according to Politico. The hiring has since been confirmed by an Apple spokesperson.
It's unclear what exactly the role will entail, but it suggests Apple has bigger ambitions of some kind for its News app on iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.
Apple News is not a firsthand source of news, so Kern's role could be at least partially related to curation of other news sources. In February, Apple executive Eddy Cuesaid the company wants to "vet and make sure that the news providers" in Apple News are "legitimate," in an effort to cut down on "clickbait."
Apple News gathers stories from several leading news sources and displays them all in one place. The app launched on iOS 9 in the United States, and it has since expanded to Australia and the United Kingdom. The app was redesigned for iOS 10 with a bolder, simpler interface that puts content front and center.
Right now if you buy a Dash Button, Amazon will give you one for free in honor of National Pet Week, this week. But they're still giving you the $4.99 credit after the first time you use it. So that's two Dash buttons for free, really (typically Dash buttons cost $4.99). Amazon Dash is a simple Wi-Fi connected gadget that lets you order your favorite things with just the push of a button. Keep it by your washing machine, your pet food, or in the bathroom closet. When you notice you're running low, just press the button and Amazon ships it right out. Each button gets tied to a specific product from Amazon's library of over 300 brands, in categories such as (click each category to see samples) household supplies, beverage & grocery, health & personal care, beauty products, pets, kids & baby, and more. Access this deal on Amazon.
After a commitment from Belkin to share plans about future Wemo HomeKit compatibility earlier in May, the company has made good on its promise, and has announced the Wemo Bridge allowing currently installed peripherals to function with Apple's home automation solution.
Apple proudly says that the the iPhone is the most popular camera in the world. But is it the best? We put the iPhone 7 Plus to the test against the newest flagship from Samsung, the Galaxy S8. Watch the video above to see the photos side-by-side and to find out how each smartphone did in delivering the best color, clarity, and range.
We tested the cameras on the iPhone 7 Plus and the Galaxy S8 in the way most people use them: in auto mode. That means straight out of the pocket, using the native camera app, and with HDR on auto. The only setting that was changed was the megapixel count, amping up the full resolution of each camera. The photos were taken at Las Vegas during the National Association of Broadcasters convention last month.
David Whitton finds that when he sends email using iCloud from Apple’s Mail app in macOS that the outgoing messages can wind up arbitrarily in the Sent mailbox in either the iCloud account or the On My Mac section.
Seems there is no way of knowing which will happen, nor to force one or the other. They get sent from On My Mac or from iCloud for no apparent reason!
This is a concern for him, because the On My Mac archived messages don’t appear to him on other devices, like his iPhone.
Does it ever seem odd to you that the Macalope can, eh, sorta make a living covering bad coverage of Apple?
Admittedly, alfalfa doesn’t cost much. And the Macalope just has this one suit. But, even so… a little weird, right? But rare is the day that the Macalope doesn’t have at least one piece to write about and many is the day he has his choice. Some days he even has his choice of pieces from the same pundit. Like today.
Writing for the Forbes contributor network and sandwich artist academy, Ewan Spence brings forth a veritable cornucopia of contrived claptrap.
When the Galaxy S8 was unveiled in late March, it wasn’t the only premium product in Samsung’s catalog that received a massive overhaul. The Gear 360 camera also got an impressive redesign, turning it from a somewhat clumsy sphere into a neatly pocketable stick.
But the 360’s case isn’t the only thing that changed. The device’s cameras have actually been downgraded—from dual 15MP fisheye lenses to dual 8.4MP fisheye lenses. Still, despite the lesser lenses, the Gear 360 is now able to record in 4K or broadcast live in 2K. Additionally, an updated Gear 360 app makes the new hardware compatible with a wider range of phones, including the iPhone. Beyond all of that, the new Gear 360 uses USB-C instead of microUSB, and there’s still a slot for an SD card.
Last week at the Google I/O developer conference, Google announced a raft of forthcoming additions to its Google Photos service. Since Google Photos runs on iOS and in any web browser, it’s a serious photo-storage option for Mac, iPhone, and iPad users—and in many ways, it’s way ahead of Apple’s Photos apps and iCloud Photo Library service.
Then again, WWDC—Apple’s own developer conference—is in just two weeks. It’s an opportunity for Apple to declare where it’s taking Photos and iCloud Photo Library next. In the meantime, though, it’s worth pointing out where Google Photos is beating Apple’s offerings, and where Apple’s ahead—and how WWDC could be poised to change both sides of the equation.
In a new study comparing the accuracy of seven different fitness trackers, the Apple Watch was found to have the lowest margin of error when measuring heart rate, beating the Basis Peak, Fitbit Surge, Microsoft Band, Mio Alpha 2, PulseOn, and Samsung Gear S2.
Researchers set out to determine the accuracy of wrist-worn devices at measuring both heart rate and energy expenditure, aka calories burned via physical activity. 60 volunteers participated, including 29 males and 31 females, each of whom wore several fitness trackers and completed activities like cycling, running, and walking.
Data gathered by the fitness devices was compared against a "gold standard" tracking method, which included an electrocardiograph (ECG) for measuring heart rate and clinical grade indirect calorimetry (measuring oxygen and carbon dioxide expelled when breathing) for measuring calories burned. An error rate of 5 percent was determined to be within acceptable limits.
Across all of the modes of activity, the Apple Watch had the lowest median heart rate error at 2 percent (1.2% to 2.8%), while the Samsung Gear S2 had the highest error rate at 6.8 percent (4.6% to 9%). The Apple Watch was also notably more accurate at measuring heart rate during the walking test than competing products.
For the walking task, three of the devices achieved a median error rate below 5%: the Apple Watch, 2.5% (1.1%-3.9%); the PulseOn, 4.9% (1.4%-8.6%); and the Microsoft Band, 5.6% (4.9%-6.3%). The remaining four devices had median error between 6.5% and 8.8%.
When it came to measuring calories, no device, Apple Watch included, managed to accurately determine how many calories were burned through activity. Median error rates across all devices and tasks ranged from 27.4 percent (Fitbit Surge) to 92.6 (PulseOn). Though no device was accurate, the Apple Watch did the best at estimating energy expenditure.
Overall, researchers found that most of the fitness trackers tested were able to measure heart rate with an acceptable error level in a laboratory setting, but calorie estimates are largely inaccurate.
There are three principal findings from the current study. In a diverse group of individuals: (1) most wrist-worn monitoring devices report HR with acceptable error under controlled laboratory conditions of walking, running and cycling; (2) no wrist-worn monitoring devices report EE within an acceptable error range under these conditions; (3) of the devices tested, the Apple Watch had the most favorable error profile while the Samsung Gear S2 had the least favorable error profile.
The M4 speaker from Omaker is IP54 rated, so its rugged splash, shock and dustproof design makes it ideal for shower and outdoor use. The latest Bluetooth 4.0 technology helps it pair quickly with your device (tap-to-pair with NFC capable devices) and maintain a long 33-foot connection range. Crystal clear sound quality and robust bass is realized through a 3W audio driver and passive subwoofer. The M4 is capable of producing 12 hours of music at 80% volume, up to three times longer than similar-sized portable speakers. It fully recharges in just 3 hours using an included Micro USB cable. The unit averages 4.5 out of 5 stars from over 5,000 people on Amazon (read reviews), many of which report sound quality that rivals more expensive speakers. Amazon indicates that its list price has been reduced significantly to just $22.99. See the discounted Omaker M4 speaker now on Amazon.
Poor iPhone 7, only halfway through its first year and already totally overshadowed by whatever is coming next. After all, 2017 marks the iPhone’s 10th birthday, so Apple is reportedly gearing up to make its anniversary edition extra special.
We’ll keep track of the latest rumors and how plausible they are, and we’ll put them in one spot (this one!) so you can pop on over whenever you want to read the latest.
If you passed on the iPhone 7 to wait for the iPhone 8—or the iPhone 7s or whatever name Apple decides to use—it sounds like the next phone could be the design refresh you were waiting for. Just don’t expect the headphone jack to return.
Could a non-invasive wearable blood-glucose monitor that links to an Apple Watch help change people’s lives and lead to better avoidance of diabetes onset? Roman and Glenn discuss this, along with the potential of new laptops at WWDC, Today at Apple, and the odd introduction of an Android switcher campaign when new phones are just a few months away.
You can subscribe to the Macworld Podcast—or leave us a review!—right here in iTunes. Or you can point your favorite podcast-savvy RSS reader at: http://feeds.soundcloud.com/users/58576458-macworld/tracks
Though we're only four months away from the presumed launch of the "iPhone 8," we haven't seen any part leaks for the much-rumored OLED device nor have we seen parts for the two standard LCD iPhones that are said to accompany it.
With a lack of part leaks, we're relying on dummy units, design drawings, and design renders to give us an idea of what to expect from the device, and there's been no shortage of those leaks, many of which are somewhat confusing due to the fact that Apple tested several iPhone 8 prototypes.
This week, the first hands-on video featuring an alleged iPhone 8 dummy model surfaced. We already saw the dummy model in question in photographs back in April, but the video provides a better look at the device, and perhaps a better picture of what the iPhone 8 might look like if accurate.
This particular dummy device, said to be a CNC model, aligns with design drawings and rumors pointing towards an edge-to-edge display with a glass body encased in a shiny stainless steel frame. There is no Home button and no visible Touch ID sensor, suggesting it is built into the display, which would be in line with many rumors.
It features a dual-lens rear camera in a vertical orientation and it lacks an Apple logo, so it's not entirely clear if this is representative of the final design Apple settled on, but it does match up with a lot of the rumors we've heard. Alleged iPhone 8 design drawings and schematics that resemble this dummy suggest the iPhone will be thicker than the current iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus.
The dummy device in the video above represents one set of design drawings we've seen, but there's also a second set of design images that have circulated featuring an iPhone with an aluminum body and a rear Touch ID button underneath the Apple logo. The device with a rear Touch ID button is said to be one of the prototypes Apple tested as a fallback should an under-display Touch ID solution not pan out.
Rumors and leaks seem to be coalescing around the first iPhone 8 design without a rear Touch ID sensor, suggesting the images with the back Touch ID button are based on an outdated design that was perhaps scrapped. That it appears unlikely this design will be used in the iPhone 8 hasn't stopped one China-based company from creating an iPhone 8 clone based on the schematics and design drawings that have been circulating.
Leaker Benjamin Geskin this morning shared images of what he says is an iPhone 8 clone that was designed based on an early iPhone 8 prototype model. It features a front display with slim bezels, a vertical camera, an aluminum body in multiple colors, and a rear Touch ID sensor.
As a clone, this is not representative of what the real iPhone 8 will look like, but it provides an interesting glimpse at prototype design and what an iPhone with a rear Touch ID sensor might resemble.
With multiple prototypes in testing, the actual design of the iPhone 8 will remain unconfirmed and up in the air until we start to see legitimate part leaks. In past years, part leaks have started earlier than May, and their absence may suggest that Apple still has not settled on a finalized design.
For a complete overview of the iPhone 8 rumors and a better picture of what we expect to see included in the overhauled device, make sure to check out our iPhone 8 roundup. It goes into much greater detail on the different design prototypes and it includes information on all of the internal features we expect, like advanced biometrics (facial or iris recognition), an A11 processor, wireless charging, a new front-facing camera system, and more.
Meridian’s Explorer2 portable digital-to-audio converter can play virtually any type of high-resolution audio file, but its most compelling feature is its ability to decode MQA files.
For me, MQA (Master Quality Authenticated) was the best thing to come out of CES 2015. Developed by Meridian Audio, a company with a long track record developing high-resolution audio technology, MQA makes it possible for consumers to hear music that’s not only better than CD quality, but the same quality that the artist heard when they recorded it in the studio. And the artist can attest to that because MQA files include a digital fingerprint that indicates the artist, recording engineer, or producer has verified that what you’re hearing was sourced from the studio master.
A favorite camera among business people and Twitch streamers alike is on sale today at Amazon for a really great price. The online retailer has the Logitech C920 webcam on sale for $50. That's the lowest price we've seen over the webcam's lifespan and currently about $12 cheaper than other retailers.
The sale is scheduled to last until just before midnight Thursday morning or when supplies run out.
Despite being around for years, the Logitech C920 is still a popular choice--even with the release of Logitech's C922 and 4K-friendly Brio 4K Pro. That staying power owes to the device's quality. It has 1080p video capture, and you can run at 1080p during Skype for Windows calls and through broadcast apps like OBS. (That's despite Logitech only stating official 1080p support within Skype for Windows.)
Intel today announced that it plans to drive large-scale mainstream adoption of Thunderbolt by releasing the protocol's specification to the industry next year under a nonexclusive, royalty-free license.
The move should help expand the Thunderbolt ecosystem by making the protocol more affordable for technology companies and accessory makers alike. Intel expects third-party Thunderbolt-compatible chip development to accelerate a wide range of new devices and user experiences.
Intel also revealed plans to integrate Thunderbolt 3 into its future CPUs, but it didn't provide a timeline as to when. The all-in-one design will take up less space on a Mac or PC's logic board, and reduce power consumption by eliminating the need for a standalone Thunderbolt controller.
“Apple and Intel have collaborated on Thunderbolt from the beginning, and as the industry leader in its adoption, we applaud Intel’s efforts to integrate Thunderbolt technology into its CPUs and open it up to the rest of the industry,” said Dan Riccio, Apple’s senior vice president of Hardware Engineering.
Intel said Thunderbolt 3 built into the processor could pave the way for thinner and lighter devices, although the current Thunderbolt 3 controller used in Apple's latest MacBook Pro has a package size of 10.7mm×10.7mm, so any logic board space saved would likely be negligible.
The greater benefit will likely come from Thunderbolt 3's increased power efficiency, paving the way for longer battery life.
Thunderbolt 3 carries power, USB, DisplayPort, HDMI, and VGA over a single port that shares the USB-C connector design, creating one standard for connecting most accessories and peripherals. Apple's latest MacBook Pro has two or four Thunderbolt 3 ports depending on the model.
Thunderbolt 3 can transfer data at speeds up to 40Gbps, allowing for a full 4K movie to be transferred in less than 30 seconds. The interface is suitable for 4K virtual reality experiences on PCs, high-end gaming, and single-cable peripherals such as external displays, docks, and storage drives.
German hackers have successfully broken the iris recognition authentication in the Samsung Galaxy S8 using equipment that costs less than the price of the smartphone, according to Ars Technica.
Hackers with the Chaos Computer Club used a digital camera, a Samsung laser printer, and a contact lens to achieve the feat. The hack involved taking a picture of the phone owner's face, printing it out on paper, carefully placing the contact lens on the iris in the printout, and holding the image in front of the locked Galaxy S8.
The video shown above was posted by the hackers to demonstrate the process in action. The photo doesn't have to be a close-up shot, although using night-shot mode or removing the infrared filter helps, according to the hackers.
The hack comes despite the fact that both Samsung and Princeton Identity, the manufacturer of the authentication technology, say iris recognition provides "airtight security" that allows consumers to "finally trust that their phones are protected". Princeton Identity have also said the Samsung partnership "brings us one step closer to making iris recognition the standard for user authentication."
The Galaxy S8 is one of the first flagship phones to offer iris recognition as a convenient alternative to using a passcode or fingerprint, but the hackers said they suspect future mobile devices that offer iris recognition may be equally easy to hack. Apple is widely expected to include the feature alongside Touch ID and face recognition in this year's much-rumored OLED iPhone, although the possible origins of the technology remain unclear.
Apple has already trademarked "Iris Engine", presumably in relation to the upcoming feature, with its acquisition of companies such as Faceshift and PrimeSense lending credence to the suggestion that Apple is developing its own solution for the so-called "iPhone 8". One report has claimed that Taiwan-based supplier Xintec, an affiliate of Apple manufacturer TSMC, is mass-producing the iris recognition chips for Apple.
Apple is planning to test next-generation 5G wireless technologies, according to an application document filed with the FCC and discovered by Business Insider.
Apple applied for an experimental license to test wireless technology on millimeter wave spectrum bands. Millimeter wave bands provide higher bandwidth and throughput up to 10Gb/s, but are limited by line of sight issues that cause problems in dense urban areas.
"Apple Inc. seeks to assess cellular link performance in direct path and multipath environments between base station transmitters and receivers using this spectrum," Apple wrote in its application.
"These assessments will provide engineering data relevant to the operation of devices on wireless carriers’ future 5G networks," it continued.
Apple will test the technology in two locations in Milpitas and Cupertino over a period of time that is not expected to exceed 12 months, using equipment sourced from Rohde and Schwarz, A.H. Systems, and Analog Devices. Apple will use the 28 and 39 GHz bands, which were among those opened up by the FCC last year for the purpose of next-generation 5G broadband.
It’s not entirely clear why Apple is planning to test millimeter wave performance or the purpose behind the testing. Cellular carriers like AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, and T-Mobile are currently testing 5G networks in preparation to deploy the next-generation technology in the coming years.
Apple could perhaps be preparing its future iPhones to take advantage of 5G technology, or the company may have some other purpose in mind. As Business Insider points out, the 28GHz band in particular could be of interest as it has been earmarked for earth-to-space transmissions, an area Apple has been exploring based on recent hires with satellite expertise.
Apple last night released its latest transparency report [PDF] outlining government data requests from July 1 to December 31, 2016. According to the data, which features several new request categories, Apple is making an effort to be as clear as possible about the types of information governments around the world have asked for. Apple's report is the most detailed report the company has produced yet.
Worldwide, Apple received 30,184 device requests, covering 151,105 devices. Apple provided data for 21,737 device requests, which equates to a 72 percent response rate. In the U.S. specifically, Apple responded to 3,335 requests out of 4,268 (78 percent). According to Apple, device-based requests cover fraud investigations as well as customers who have asked law enforcement to help locate lost or stolen devices.
Apple received 2,392 financial identifier requests worldwide, covering 21,249 devices. Apple provided information for 1,821 of the requests, which are related to cases where law enforcement officials are working on behalf of customers who have asked for help with fraudulent credit card activity.
When it comes to worldwide government account requests, Apple received 2,231, rejecting 175 of those, and providing no data for 471. Non-content data was provided for 1,350 requests, and content was offered up in 410 cases. A total of 8,880 accounts were affected.
In the United States, Apple says it received between 5750 and 5999 National Security Requests under FISA and National Security Letters, which affected 4750 to 4999 accounts. Apple is not allowed to provide specific numbers, but offers up the narrowest range permissible by law.
U.S. National Security requests increased significantly in the second half of 2016 compared to the first half of the year. In its first 2016 transparency report, Apple said it received 2750 to 2999 National Security orders affecting 2000 to 2249 accounts.
According to the data, Apple also received one "declassified" National Security Letter from the FBI. National Security Letters are traditionally kept secret via a gag order that prevents companies from sharing information about them, but following the USA Freedom Act, the rules have been loosened and tech companies are now able to publish National Security Letters when declassified. Apple is able to publish the content of the letter, but has not done so.
Apple's data is broken down into multiple additional categories, covering government requests for emergencies such as missing children, account deletion/restriction requests, and account preservation requests, all of which can be viewed directly in the report. The company also provides more information on government account requests by legal process type, including search warrant, wiretap orders, subpoenas, pen register/trap and trace orders, and other types of court orders.
Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.
Denise Young Smith, who served as Apple's head of Worldwide Human Resources, has taken on a new role, according to her LinkedIn page. Going forward, Smith will tackle diversity issues at the company as Apple's Vice President for Inclusion and Diversity.
Denise Young Smith is Apple's vice president of Inclusion and Diversity at Apple. She reports to CEO Tim Cook.
Since joining Apple in 1997, Denise has served in several key HR roles. Most recently as Vice President of Worldwide Human Resources and Talent. For over 10 years, she sat on the leadership team that built Apple's retail organization, which now welcomes more than one million people every day. Apple stores have redefined the retail experience and their talented employees have become the face of Apple for customers around the world. Before retail, Denise ran HR for Apple's Worldwide Operations and Corporate Employee Relations teams.
According to an internal source that spoke to 9to5Mac, Smith has already taken on the new role at Apple, though her executive page on Apple's leadership site has yet to be updated. With Smith moving to her new role, Apple will have no head of HR, a role that Luca Maestri, Apple CFO, will temporarily fill.
Smith, who has been with Apple for more than 20 years, will report directly to Tim Cook. As HR head, Smith has already been involved in many diversity programs at Apple and her new role suggests Apple is taking diversity and inclusion more seriously.
Apple's previous head of diversity and inclusion, Jeffrey Siminoff, was in a director role that reported to Smith, but Smith's position is executive level, which TechCrunch says represents a "significant upscaling of responsibility" compared to the role Siminoff previously held.
According to Apple's latest worldwide diversity numbers, the company is 68 percent male and 32 percent female, while in the U.S., employees are 56 percent white, 19 percent Asian, 12 percent Hispanic, and nine percent black.
Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts. Discuss this article in our forums
As stories surrounding the 2017 launch of the "iPhone 8" continue to heat up, a report from The Bell this morning has already begun rumors for next year's so-called "iPhone 9." According to the report, which centers on Apple's and Samsung's supply chain deal for the 2018 iPhone, the iPhone 9 will launch in two OLED screen sizes: 5.28-inch and 6.46-inch (via The Investor).
Apple currently sells a 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch display in its iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus smartphone devices, respectively. Later this year, the company is expected to launch new iPhones in three sizes: two "iPhone 7s" models will keep the 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch display sizes, while the major new "iPhone 8" will include a 5.8-inch OLED screen.
A rendering of the iPhone 8
The report said the iPhone 9 is expected to come in two OLED models -- 5.28- and 6.46-inch display sizes. Samsung’s OLED shipment is also likely to be more than double at 180 million units.
“The two companies have recently signed a non-disclosure agreement on general conditions, including the screen size,” an industry sources was quoted as saying in the report.
The new rumor for the 2018 iPhone devices suggests a screen that would be slightly smaller than the current display of the iPhone Plus models, and then a larger option that would represent Apple's biggest smartphone display to date. Although the report doesn’t confirm the full sizes of the iPhone 9 models, the screen dimensions suggest Apple could return to a pair of device sizes similar to current generation iPhones but with full-front displays and greatly reduced bezels.
The Bell's report today doesn't mention any other rumors related to the iPhone 9, except that Samsung will be the supplier for the OLED displays and will manufacture more than 180 million units for Apple. The report did state that details such as "screen design and functions" might be adjusted down the line, considering how far away the iPhone 9 is from a launch date.
Microsoft said the new Surface Pro delivers up to 13.5 hours of battery life on a single charge, a 50 percent increase over the Surface Pro 4 and 35 percent more battery life than the iPad Pro's advertised 10 hours.
The notebook-tablet hybrid features Intel's latest Kaby Lake processors, including Core m3, i5, and i7 chips depending on the model. Microsoft says the high-end Surface Pro with a Core i7 processor is 2.5× faster than the Surface Pro 3 and 1.7× faster than the iPad Pro with Apple's own A9X chip.
Surface Pro m3 and i5 models feature a new fanless cooling system, while the i7 model still has a fan with "improved hybrid cooling."
The new Surface Pro has a refined design with cleaner lines and curved edges, a "visually softer" camera, and an improved hinge with a 165º range of motion allows it to be placed in Studio Mode like its Surface Studio desktop.
It's also the lightest Surface Pro ever, starting at 1.7 lbs. By comparison, the 9.7-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro weigh 0.96 lbs and 1.57 lbs respectively.
The new Surface Pro continues to have a 12.3-inch display with 267 pixels per inch, compared to 264 PPI for both the 9.7-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro. Microsoft says its custom PixelSense technology means that colors on the new Surface Pro will be "more vibrant, precise, and impactful than ever before."
Other tech specs include up to a 1TB SSD, up to 16GB RAM, up to Intel Iris Plus 640 graphics, a USB 3.0 port, a microSD card reader, Mini DisplayPort, and a 3.5mm headphone jack. The device runs Windows 10 Pro.
The new Surface Pro is accompanied by a new Surface Pen with over 4096 pressure points, only 21 milliseconds of latency, and new tilt functionality. Microsoft says the new Surface Pen is over two times more accurate, with four times more pressure sensitivity, than the original Surface Pen.
There's also new Signature Type Covers, now designed with Alcantara fabric for a "soft, velvety" feel. Microsoft pitches typing on the keyboards as "easier, more, comfortable, more accurate, better sounding, and easier to do without looking" than the 12-inch MacBook and iPad Pro.
The new Surface Pro and Type Covers are available to pre-order today in the United States and select other markets at the Microsoft Store, Microsoft.com, BestBuy.com, and JD.com. The new Surface Pro will ship on June 15 in 25 countries. Surface Pro pricing starts at $799.99 in the United States.
Surface Pro models with LTE Advanced will be available later this year. The new Surface Pen will be available in the coming weeks.
After posting a few images yesterday that claimed to show cases for the upcoming 10.5-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro, Benjamin Geskin has now shared a few CAD images, dummy models, and renderings of the 10.5-inch iPad model. The first set of computer-aided design drawings are based on the model that case manufacturers have received from the factory, which Geskin said is "already in mass production."
The new iPad images align with all of the port cutouts seen in yesterday's wooden accessory case, including a device that has four speakers, a Lightning port, camera with vertically-aligned flash, side volume rockers, and a Smart Connector.
Yesterday's case images also revealed a new microphone slot located at the top rear of the case, similar to where it's located on the current 9.7-inch iPad. The new images confirm that microphone slot on the 10.5-inch iPad, along with two additional microphones sitting atop the device in between the speaker grilles, pointing towards three microphones total for the 10.5-inch iPad Pro.
Geskin has also shared a case manufacturer's dummy mockup of the 10.5-inch iPad Pro, which continues showing the same ports for volume buttons, 3.5mm headphone jack, speaker grilles, Lightning port, SIM card tray, and Smart Connector. All of the images support the rumors that the new iPad will pack in a 10.5-inch display into the same form factor and nearly identical size of the 9.7-inch iPad.
In a series of images shared with iDropNews, Geskin designed a rendering based on the recent rumors to show how the bezels on the new 10.5-inch iPad Pro might look. Since the device will keep roughly the same footprint of the 9.7-inch iPad, the rendering boasts a device with small 7mm bezels on the left and right sides of the device and around 19mm bezels on the top and bottom.
The upcoming 10.5-inch iPad (left) compared to the current 9.7-inch iPad (right)
This would make the display space big enough for the new 10.5-inch screen, while allocating enough room for the traditional Home Button, which Apple isn't expected to do away with yet on the upcoming iPad Pro. The 10.5-inch device is also expected to be slightly taller than the current 9.7-inch iPad, while potentially being slightly thicker than the 9.7-inch iPad's 6.1mm thickness.
Worldwide iPhone sales were flat in the first quarter of 2017, according to Gartner, causing a year-on-year drop in Apple's share of a growing smartphone industry boosted by the rise of top Chinese mobile manufacturers breaking out into neighboring markets.
Global sales of smartphones to end users totaled 380 million units in the first quarter of 2017, a 9.1 percent increase over the first quarter of 2016, reported Gartner. Of that figure, Apple sold 51.9 million units, up from 51.6 million in Q1 2016, leading to a drop in market share year over year. Samsung retained top spot with 78.6 million units sold to end users, and held on to 20.7 per cent market share, but both figures were declines on a year ago.
"Sales of iPhones were flat, which led to a drop in market share year over year," said Anshul Gupta, research director at Gartner. "Similar to Samsung, Apple is increasingly facing fierce competition from Chinese brands Oppo and Vivo, among others, and its performance in China is under attack."
Huawei, Oppo, and Vivo had a combined market share in the first quarter of 2017 that accounted for 24 percent, up 7 percent year on year. Huawei held third spot behind second-placed Apple, edging closer to the company with 34 million units in Q1 2017, while Oppo continued to catch up with Huawei, with a 94.7 percent increase in global sales, resulting in the best performance of the quarter and maintaining its number one position in China.
The top three Chinese smartphone manufacturers are driving sales with their competitively priced, high quality smartphones equipped with innovative features, according to Gartner, with aggressive marketing and sales promotion having further helped the brands to take share from others in markets such as India, Indonesia and Thailand. In India alone, for example, Vivo grew by 220 per cent.
In the operating system market, iOS saw continued growth, with a 0.9 percent uptick in market share year on year. But it was Android that fared best, growing its share by 2 percent, thanks to increasing acceptance of Chinese brands in global markets, led by high-quality smartphones.
Nokia and Apple announced today that they have settled all litigation related to their intellectual property dispute and agreed a multi-year patent license.
Under the collaborative agreement, Nokia said it will provide "certain network infrastructure products and services" to Apple. In turn, Apple agreed to return all health products owned by the Finnish company to Apple retail and online stores.
"This is a meaningful agreement between Nokia and Apple," said Maria Varsellona, Chief Legal Officer at Nokia, responsible for Nokia's patent licensing business. "It moves our relationship with Apple from being adversaries in court to business partners working for the benefit of our customers."
In December of last year, Nokia filed multiple complaints against Apple in several countries, accusing the Cupertino company of infringing several of its patents. In response, Apple sued Nokia in an antitrust lawsuit against several patent assertion entities which it claimed were trying to collect excessive fees for Nokia patents. Apple had established FRAND (Fair, Reasonable, and Non-Discriminatory) deals with Nokia, but by transferring patents to patent holding companies, additional royalties can be demanded.
Following the latest development, Nokia will receive an up-front cash payment from Apple with additional revenues forthcoming. The figure remains undisclosed, but net sales in Nokia patent licensing will reflect the value of the agreement, while Nokia expects related revenues to be reflected in the second quarter of 2017. No other details of the terms of the agreement have been released.
"We are pleased with this resolution of our dispute and we look forward to expanding our business relationship with Nokia," said Jeff Williams, Apple's chief operating officer.
Apple's four-inch smartphone received a customer satisfaction score of 87 out of 100 to finish just ahead of Samsung's 5.7-inch Galaxy S6 edge+ and the 5.5-inch iPhone 7 Plus.
20 other smartphones, mostly including other iPhone and Galaxy models, received customer satisfaction scores of between 70 and 85, according to the ACSI results published today.
“Over the past few years, the general trend for smartphones has been toward larger screens,” says ACSI Managing Director David VanAmburg. “But apparently, consumers were craving a new iteration of a smaller, less expensive phone as the iPhone SE – Apple’s first update to a 4-inch phone since 2013 – comes in first in ACSI this year.”
ACSI said the results are based on interviews with 36,194 customers in the United States, chosen at random and contacted via email between May 2016 and April 2017. The survey data was inputted into ACSI's so-called "cause-and-effect econometric model," which in turn estimates customer satisfaction.
Apple introduced the iPhone SE in March 2016, acknowledging that some people simply love smaller phones, as evidenced by the 30 million 4-inch iPhones that it sold in 2015. The smartphone is essentially an iPhone 5s with newer tech specs, including a twice as fast A9 chip and a 12-megapixel rear camera.
Given its lower $399 starting price, the iPhone SE is also a popular smartphone in more price-sensitive markets such as India.