The Net-Neutrality Edition Friday, February 21, 2020

Welcome To The Fresh Internet Hell Of The Streaming Wars, by Katharine Trendacosta, Slate

So while you’re promised Peacock for free as a Comcast subscriber, you may also be getting your Disney+ content, which you pay for, at a degraded quality. Or maybe Disney+ won’t get degraded—if it pays Comcast’s price. That particular deal is just hypothetical, but without net neutrality protections, ISPs can charge their competitors a lot for access to their customers and for the promise that they won’t throttle traffic to competitors’ services. Which will then force the prices that viewers pay up.

The same dynamic between ISPs and streaming services plays out with cellular providers, many of which are part of the same giant conglomerates as the big ISPs. Just as ISPs can include streaming services with your internet bill, cell providers will offer a streaming service with your mobile plan. And in the absence of net neutrality protections, cell providers engage in practice called “zero rating,” which means that either their own services or services that have made a deal with them will not count against your data cap. For low-income populations, for those who rely on their phones for internet access, this can lock people into certain services and certain information sources.

What Secrets? Apple Embroiled In Row Over Book By German Former Executive, by Douglas Busvine, Reuters

Murmann said a first print run of 4,000 copies was selling well and, rather than pulling the book, it was rushing out a second print run. “It’s No. 2 on the Amazon best-seller list in Germany - everyone is talking about it,” said Peter Felixberger, an executive at Murmann.

Apple, meanwhile, has not yet sought a court injunction on sales of the book. “It looks like Apple has gone a bit far tactically, building up pressure and issuing threats but then lacking the courage actually to go to court,” Graef said.


Why Your Apple Watch Credits You With Fewer Calories Than You Expect, by Graham Bower, Cult of Mac

Active Calories are additional calories you burn by doing exercise that you would not have burned if you were just resting. Or in other words, Apple deducts your BMR from your Total Calories to calculate your Active Calories.

Apple Has Pushed Updates To XProtect And MRT, by Howard Oakley, The Eclectic Light Company

Apple doesn’t release information about what these updates add or change, and now obfuscates the identities of malware detected by XProtect using internal code names.

Noto Review: Beautifully Modern And Versatile Note-Taking, by Ryan Christoffel, MacStories

It offers a clean, elegant design and a diverse array of tools so you can mix and match different content types inside each note. But it also integrates with key system technologies like drag and drop, multiwindow, iCloud sync, and more.

Podcast App Castro Now Rips YouTube Audio To Your Queue, by Charlie Sorrel, Cult of Mac

Castro, one of the top two or three podcast apps for iOS, now lets you side load YouTube videos into the app. It’s audio-only, so this isn’t a way to download videos for offline viewing. But it’s a sweet feature for anyone who just wants to listen to a presentation/lecture/etc. instead of having to watch it.


Apple Drops A Bomb On Long-life HTTPS Certificates: Safari To Snub New Security Certs Valid For More Than 13 Months, by Shaun Nichols, The Register

Safari will, later this year, no longer accept new HTTPS certificates that expire more than 13 months from their creation date.


Upgraded Apple Maps Backpack Rig Uses iPhone 11 Pro For Image Capture, by Buster Hein, Cult of Mac

The wearable rig, presumably used to collect images and data for Apple Maps, looks similar to one seen in 2018. But it features a new hardshell cover — and at least three of Apple’s latest iPhones, apparently used to capture images from the backpack’s sides.

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