The Serial-Numbers Edition Monday, December 20, 2021

Stalking Concerns Raised As Person Finds AirTag Hidden Under The Wheel Well On Her Car, by Benjamin Mayo, 9to5Mac

One detail that the Twitter thread gets slightly wrong is the idea that the AirTag is fully anonymous. It is true that the live location updates of the AirTag are end-to-end encrypted, and only known to the owner of the tag. However, in case of abuse, Apple does keep records of which AirTag serial numbers are associated with which Apple ID. So if a police investigation was brought forward, with a valid court order, it is possible that Apple could identify the original purchaser of the found AirTag.

Global iPhone 13 Delivery Times Shrink As Supply Improves, by Malcolm Owen. AppleInsider

The supply of current-gen iPhones is improving, with lead times for orders reducing to the best levels since the iPhone 13 launch, analysts say, but Pro models continue to take longer to be delivered than the standard version.

Navigational Apps For The Blind Could Have A Broader Appeal, by Amanda Morris, New York Times

Despite the use of walking canes, guide dogs, help from strangers, and popular navigational apps like Google Maps, Clark Rachfal, director of advocacy and governmental affairs for the American Council of the Blind, said losing your way is still a huge issue for many blind and low vision people. Simply hearing directions from an app like “in 500 feet turn right,” often isn’t enough information to guarantee independence and safety.


That may change, though, with the release of new apps specifically designed with pedestrians and accessibility in mind. Thanks to improvements in mapping technology and smartphone cameras, a number have emerged with features like indoor navigation, detailed descriptions of the surrounding environment and more warnings about obstacles.


How To Limit What A Toddler Can Do When You Hand Over Your iPhone Or iPad, by Tim Hardwick, MacRumors

Fortunately, Apple includes a feature in iOS that allows you to keep your device locked into a single app and control which features are available. It’s called Guided Access, and this article explains how you can use it.

Photo-editing Apps Are Crucial If You Love Taking Phone Pics, by Andrew Hoyle, CNET

A lot of people are staring down days or even weeks of end-of-year time off from work. And if you're tired of binge-watching TV or you're just looking for a creative outlet to fill your wintry days, might I suggest you look into photo-editing apps?


Apple Should Make A Giant iPad As Its Smart Home Portal, by Mark Gurman, Bloomberg

A high price and a lackluster voice assistant won’t turn Apple into the king of smart home devices, but moving in this direction could be the beginning of a real presence. And that would be a good thing for the industry and the Apple faithful.

How To Avoid Gadget Frustration On Christmas Day, by BBC

Congratulations: you've outdone the chip shortage and conquered the crowds, or maybe Santa's due to be very good to you. Either way, you've got some new technology under the Christmas tree.

But these aren't wooden blocks or teddy bears. Tech toys often need a little preparation before Christmas morning.

Here's a quick crash course in what needs to be done before the day.

Bottom of the Page

I need to keep reminding myself that there is no perfect way of arranging icons and widgets on my iPhone, no matter how one defines perfect. Stop spending time rearranging stuff and changing the app icons.

The good news though: I have no desire to rearrange the icons on my Mac's Dock.


Thanks for reading.