Archive for August 2022

The Fine-For-Casual Edition Sunday, August 14, 2022

Apple And Samsung Smartwatches Need More Buttons If They Want More Athletes, by Victoria Song, The Verge

For better or worse, Apple and Samsung have relied on touchscreen navigation on their smartwatches. That’s fine for casual exercise, or for the average person who isn’t traversing all sorts of terrain with extreme temperatures. It’s not going to cut it for the outdoor enthusiast both companies are aiming at with these “Pro” watches.

Apps Turning Restaurant Leftovers Into Cheap Meals Take Off In Asia, by Business Times

With a tantalising array of satay chicken, wok-fried mud crab and chilled tiger prawns, the dinner buffet at Singapore’s Grand Hyatt hotel typically sets diners back about US$70. Those on a tighter budget and with an eye on sustainability can fill a box for a 10th of that price.

Across Asia, tech startups are taking food otherwise destined for landfill and providing discounted meals through mobile phone apps.

Apple Remains Silent About Plans To Detect Known CSAM Stored In iCloud Photos, by Joe Rossignol, MacRumors

It has now been over a year since Apple announced plans for three new child safety features, including a system to detect known Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM) images stored in iCloud Photos, an option to blur sexually explicit photos in the Messages app, and child exploitation resources for Siri. The latter two features are now available, but Apple remains silent about its plans for the CSAM detection feature.

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Speaking of buttons, I have mentioned this before, but I still do wish the iPhone has a hardware button to play/pause. Especially since iPhone is a widescreen iPod, after all.

All the non-iPod-touch iPods have this button, with the exception of one particular generation of the iPod nano and iPod shuffle, both of which was quickly corrected in the next version.

The final iteration of the iPod nano has the play/pause button right between the two volume buttons, which to my amateur design eyes, is perfect for the iPhone.

Of course, I am not expecting this button to appear in any future iPhones. We are lucky that Apple hasn't decided to remove any more buttons.


Thanks for reading.

The Saved-State Edition Saturday, August 13, 2022

A Single Flaw Broke Every Layer Of Security In MacOS, by Matt Burgess, Wired

Every time you shut down your Mac, a pop-up appears: “Are you sure you want to shut down your computer now?” Nestled under the prompt is another option most of us likely overlook: the choice to reopen the apps and windows you have open now when your machine is turned back on. Researchers have now found a way to exploit a vulnerability in this “saved state” feature—and it can be used to break the key layers of Apple’s security protections.


The researcher says that while Apple fixed the issue for Macs running the Monterey operating system, which was released in October 2021, the previous versions of macOS are still vulnerable to the attack.

The Zoom Installer Let A Researcher Hack His Way To Root Access On macOS, by Corin Faife, The Verge

A security researcher has found a way that an attacker could leverage the macOS version of Zoom to gain access over the entire operating system.

Details of the exploit were released in a presentation given by Mac security specialist Patrick Wardle at the Def Con hacking conference in Las Vegas on Friday. Some of the bugs involved have already been fixed by Zoom, but the researcher also presented one unpatched vulnerability that still affects systems now.

On App Stores

Apple Held Up Telegram’s Latest Update Over Emoji, by Jay Peters, The Verge

“After extensive media coverage of my previous post, Apple got back to us with a demand to water down our pending Telegram update by removing Telemoji — higher quality vector-animated versions of the standard emoji,” Durov wrote on his Telegram channel on Friday.

Pushing In-App Subscriptions

Apple And Facebook Reportedly Discussed 'Revenue-Sharing' Ideas In Past, by Joe Rossignol, MacRumors

According to The Wall Street Journal, which claims that most of the discussions occurred between 2016 and 2018, one idea that Apple discussed was Facebook creating a subscription-based version of its app without ads. Apple would have collected its standard 15% to 30% commission on Facebook’s in-app subscriptions through the App Store, but Facebook ultimately decided against the idea, the report claims.

A Short History Of Apple And Facebook Digging In Their Heels, by Nick Heer, Pixel Envy

If Apple was, indeed, planning a relentless and self-preferencing campaign against Facebook beginning in 2016, as Rodriguez reports, for a feature previewed in 2020, that would be pretty terrible. But 2016 is the time when Apple enabled subscriptions for all types of apps and launched its Search Ads initiative. Apple executives, including Phil Schiller, explained these changes in press briefings, and the company privately discussed them with developers, too.


New Apple Ad Says That Apple One Bundle Offers 'The Best Of Apple' In One Place, by Mike Peterson, AppleInsider

The quick thirty-second video dubs the Apple One subscription as a way to get "the best of Apple" all in one package. It gives an overview of the included services, ranging from Apple Arcade to Apple News.

This Timer App Is The Answer To Your Focus Woes, by Mary-Elisabeth Combs, CNET

Forest is a "gamified timer," meaning you're rewarded for using the timer. Start the timer by planting a digital tree and then, while the timer runs, the tree grows.

What makes this so powerful for focus is that while the tree is growing, your phone is essentially locked. You can still access all of your apps, but doing so will be at the expense of your tree. That's right, if you play on your phone while the timer is running, your tree will die. Each tree that you grow, or don't, is saved into a forest where you can see all of the time you've spent focusing quantified as a cute digital forest.

How Remote Workers Can Use The Serene App To Focus, by Blathnaid O’Dea, Silicon Republic

Serene is not just for those of us who are easily distracted. It’s for anyone who needs to carve out time for deep focus periods at work.

The app has several features that enable a user to harness their “productivity superpowers” using three different techniques.


Apple For Teachers A Recipe For Corporate Creep, Expert Warns, by Adam Carey, Brisbane Times

Tech giant Apple is embedding itself in Australian schools, accrediting “Apple teachers” and awarding its most devoted schools “distinguished” status, in a move one expert says risks distorting established recognition of teaching expertise.

Apple has awarded almost 50 schools in Australia “Apple distinguished school” status for demonstrating the company’s “vision for learning with technology”. Teachers out to gain Apple teacher accreditation must complete online modules that prove their proficiency with Apple products.

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Okay, I am done with Swift Playground. Switching back to Xcode for this weekend.


Thanks for reading.

The Incredible-Snaps Edition Friday, August 12, 2022

These Award-winning iPhone Photos Show What You Can Do With Your Older Model, by Mark Wilson, TechRadar

You might understandably be pining for an iPhone 14, but the iPhone Photography Awards 2022 has just landed to proved you don't really need that rumored 48MP camera to take incredible snaps.

The annual competition, which runs independently from Apple but is now in its 15th year, has just announced its impressive winner's list. And it's by no means dominated by the latest iPhones, with the winners stretching all the way back to the iPhone 6S Plus from 2015.

Apple Still Trying To Keep Up With M2 MacBook Air Demand Almost A Month After Launch, by Sami Fathi, MacRumors

Almost a month after launch, demand for the new M2 MacBook Air continues to be high, with supply in relatively short supply. For just the baseline configuration, customers are facing up to a three-week wait, according to Apple’s online store.

What An iPhone Lidar Can Show About The Speed Of Light, by Rhett Allain, Wired

Lidar is useful whenever you need to know something about the shape of an object or surface. It's used in autonomous vehicles to determine the edge of a road, and to detect people and cars. You can put lidar in an aircraft looking down at the surface of the Earth to get mapping data that is useful for both agriculture and archeology, like to find lost structures. It's also great for surveying a region to get a nice 3D map of buildings.


Lidar is an acronym that stands for "light detection and ranging." It's basically like a tape measure—except that it uses the speed of light to measure distance, instead of a physical object.

(Not) Coming This Fall

Hide My Email Ventura Feature For 3rd-party Apps Seemingly Dropped Or Postponed, by Ben Lovejoy, 9to5Mac

A Hide My Email Ventura feature for third-party apps has been removed from Apple’s website. The disposable email address feature now appears to remain limited to the company’s own Mail and Safari apps.

Apple Removes Network Locations From macOS Ventura, by Jason Snell, Six Colors

Network Locations is a feature of macOS that, ever since version 10.0, has allowed users to switch between different sets of network configuration preferences in different environments and situations. It’s not visible in the redesigned System Preferences app of macOS Ventura—and Tyler Loch discovered that the disappearance is not an accident. Loch’s Feedback submission to Apple has been marked as “works as currently designed.”


Weather Strip For iOS Gets Air Quality Forecasts To Keep An Eye On Smoke, Smog, And Ozone, by Michael Potuck, 9to5Mac

Weather Strip, the unique weather app for iPhone and iPad is out with an update today that delivers detailed air quality data and forecasts, more detailed views for temperature, and wind, and more.

Kuri Is An App That Wants To Reduce Your Food’s Carbon Footprint, by Haje Jan Kamps, TechCrunch

In short, Kuri is a personalized, climate-friendly cooking app that helps people cook seasonal, low-carbon meals. As part of the onboarding process, it takes you through your dietary preferences, and from there it filters out everything you can’t eat, so you don’t end up with the “vegetarian at a steak house” syndrome that a lot of apps seem to suffer from.

5 Bookmarking Apps To Keep Your Unread Open Tabs Organized, by David Nield, Popular Science

If you need a better bookmarking system and find yourself drowning in web links, these apps are worth a look, and the good news is you’ve got several top-quality options to pick from.

The 7 Best Educational Apps For Kids, According To Learning Specialists, by Lauren Heller, Encyclopaedia Britannica

The apps our educators chose are ones that do it all, providing screen time that’s educational, entertaining, and helpful for kids who need a leg up.

Batteries App Brings iOS 16's New Battery Percentage Icon To The Mac, by Joe Rossignol, MacRumors

Batteries for Mac is a useful app that lets you view battery percentages for an iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, AirPods, Beats, and other Bluetooth devices in the macOS menu bar.


Apple Users - Stop Using AirPrint To Print Your Photos, by John Aldred, DIY Photography

You see, as photographers, we spend far too much time calibrating all of our devices to ensure that our cameras, monitors and printers all see and produce the same colours. And all of this goes to waste the instant you send a print to an AirPrint printer.

Stephen Colbert Gets Severed In A Comedic 'Severance' Parody, by Wesley Hilliard, AppleInsider

Colbert claims to have been an original cast member of "Severance," but for some reason, all of his scenes were cut from the final production. Luckily, "The Late Show" was able to get ahold of some of the alleged deleted scenes.

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The iPhone camera has reached the point of good-enough-to-make-great-photography many years ago.

I am not a photographer. I can't tell a good photo from a bad photo.

But I will have to remind myself the Intel Mac I am typing on right now is more than good enough for me to have fun with Swift and PHP and Marathon. I don't have to lust for the M2 MacBook Air.



Thanks for reading.

The Inject-Whatever Edition Thursday, August 11, 2022

Let Websites Framebust Out Of Native Apps, by Adrian Holovaty

When a native app embeds a website via a webview, the native app has control over that page. Yes, even if it’s on a domain that the native app doesn’t control (!). This means the native app can inject whatever JavaScript it likes into any website that’s viewed in the webview.

Today I read an astounding exposé by Felix Krause, in which he discovered the Facebook and Instagram iOS apps inject JavaScript into all web pages that are viewed in their webviews. You should read and process this.

iOS Privacy: Instagram And Facebook Can Track Anything You Do On Any Website In Their In-app Browser, by Felix Krause

The iOS Instagram and Facebook app render all third party links and ads within their app using a custom in-app browser. This causes various risks for the user, with the host app being able to track every single interaction with external websites, from all form inputs like passwords and addresses, to every single tap.

Coming Soon

iOS 16 Will Show Live Scores From NBA, MLB, And Premier League Games On iPhone's Lock Screen, by Joe Rossignol, MacRumors

Live Activities will be available for NBA, MLB, and Premier League games in select countries, according to fine print on the iOS 16 features page.

Everyone Is Here

Jon Hamm Joins ‘The Morning Show’, by Lesley Goldberg, Hollywood Reporter

Jon Hamm has joined the season three cast of Apple’s The Morning Show. The news comes after the Mad Men alum recently poked fun at the streamer for its roster of A-list stars that included everyone, seemingly, but him. The “Everyone but Jon Hamm” ad earned an Emmy nomination for outstanding commercial.

Apple Ramps Up Its In-House Podcasting Efforts With Studio Deal, by Ashley Carman and Lucas Shaw, Bloomberg

The iPhone maker is looking to add original content to its Podcasts app that it hopes could eventually turn into shows on its Apple TV+ service. The deal — an agreement with Futuro Studios, the maker of the criminal-justice series “Suave” — will fund development and production of podcasts, according to people familiar with the situation. In exchange, Apple will have the first chance to turn any podcast into a film or TV show.


Apple Marks 40 Years In Australia With New Commitments To Drive Opportunity And Protect The Planet, by Apple

To mark Apple’s 40 years in Australia, the company today announced new initiatives that will help protect the environment and create opportunity in communities across the country. Projects include developing new sources of renewable energy, expanding coding education programs, and forging partnerships with Indigenous-led nonprofits advancing equity and opportunity.

“We’re proud to celebrate Apple’s long history in Australia, and to deepen our shared commitment to protecting the planet and creating opportunity in people’s lives,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “We’re fortunate to have so many great partners, colleagues, and customers across this country, and we’ll continue working together to make the world a more equitable and just place for all.”

The Story Of Steve Jobs And Issey Miyake's Friendship (And A Nixed Apple Uniform), by Wynne Davis, NPR

While Issey Miyake's black turtlenecks are well known because of their association with former Apple CEO Steve Jobs, the impact that the famous Japanese designer had on Apple could have been even larger, with Jobs initially wanting Miyake to create a uniform for all Apple employees.

Miyake died from liver cancer at age 84 on Aug. 5. As the news of his death has spread, many are revisiting the designer's work, including his connection to Jobs.

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Instead of following what Steve Jobs did by buying one hundred turtlenecks that are exactly the same, you can also save time by not having to choose what clothes to wear everyday by just not caring what other people think about your fashion sense. :-)


Thanks for reading.

The Consumers-Rethink Edition Wednesday, August 10, 2022

The Technology Behind Apple’s Ridiculously Thin New Laptop Could Change Everything, by NICK BILTON, Vanity Fair

Maybe the M2 chip, and the sleeker shapes it makes possible, will usher in a bold new era of design from Apple. But the company is also trying to get consumers to rethink what makes a device “new,” with less of a focus on speed and size and more on other features. “Now, with Apple silicon, you have a product that can handle any task you can throw at it, and consumers are looking before performance to what kind of battery life am I getting, what is my experience with my built-in camera, speakers, and microphones,” said Laura Metz, a senior product manager at Apple. “That’s what we’ve started talking about more so than some of the speeds and feeds of the silicon or chip technology itself.”

Apple Card's Rapid Growth, Outside Vendors Blamed For Mishaps Within Goldman's Credit-card Business, by Hugh Son, CNBC

When an Apple Card user disputes a transaction, Goldman has to seek a resolution within regulatory timelines, and it sometimes failed at that, said the people, who requested anonymity to speak candidly about the situation. Customers were sometimes given conflicting information or had long wait times, the people said.

Goldman got more disputes than it counted on, said one source. "You have these queues that you need to clear out within a certain amount of time. The business was getting so big, suddenly we had to create more automation to deal with it."

Adobe Highlights Women Behind Apple TV+ Film 'Luck' In A Series Of Videos, by Filipe Espósito, 9to5Mac

Apple TV+ last week premiered Luck, its first feature-length animation produced in partnership with Skydance Animation. As the film is now available, well-known software developer Adobe has shared a series of videos about the women behind the Apple Original Film.

Sparking Curiosity

Travel The World In An App, by Shira Ovide, New York Times

Flightradar24 is one of several sites that compile public information about aircraft locations, flight paths, ownership records, altitude and more for display in an interactive map. People can see details about planes and where they’re heading almost anywhere in the world, including Antarctica.

Dibble, a former technology worker for the Environmental Protection Agency, had little knowledge about aviation, but the app satisfied her wanderlust and sparked curiosity about what was happening around her.

Tracking Ships (And Sharks) And Tying Knots: Apps To Enrich Your Seaside Vacation, by Stephanie Rosenbloom, New York Times

But a coastal vacation is also an opportunity for discovery. Maybe you’d like to learn how to tie fishing and boating knots? Or decipher those colorful signal flags you see on ships and in seaside shops? With the right app you can turn a holiday on the water into something deeper: identify the fish you’ve just caught or the ship that’s passing by, find out about the seashell you’ve spotted or the lake you’re diving into, explore nearby shark migrations, and study the rhythms of the moon and tides, all while keeping your toes in the sand.


Apple And Kim Kardashian Collaborate On Unique Beats Fit Pro Line, by Chance Miller, 9to5Mac

Beats is expanding the lineup of its popular Beats Fit Pro earbuds with color options. This time, Apple-owned Beats teamed up with Kim Kardashian to design three “neutral” colors for the Beats Fit Pro, as well as a new marketing campaign.

Apple Podcasts Marketing Tool For Social Media Released, by John Voorhees, MacStories

Apple has released a free web app that lets podcasters create artwork and links to promote their shows on Apple Podcasts. The app offers several customization options that should appeal to a wide variety of creators who want to market their shows on Apple’s service. Still, there are a couple of limitations worth keeping in mind.

1Password 8 Launches For iOS With New Home Screen, Customization Options, More, by Chance Miller, 9to5Mac

With a focus on speed, a new home screen, customization options, and more, 1Password 8 is touted as a “brand-new experience” for iPhone and iPad users.

Hands-on: Gamevice Flex Brings The Comforts Of Gaming To Almost Any Phone In Almost Any Case, by Kyle Bradshaw, 9to5Mac

At the center of the Gamevice Flex’s design is the idea of “muscle memory” — more specifically, the ability to play on your mobile device at the same skill level you would with a traditional console controller.


Small Businesses Count Cost Of Apple’s Privacy Changes, by Patrick McGee, Financial Times

Many small companies that are reliant on online ads to attract new customers told the Financial Times they did not initially notice the full impact of Apple’s restrictions until recent months, when price inflation squeezed consumer demand in major markets worldwide.

That has left companies suddenly shrinking their marketing spend to conserve cash while also finding it prohibitively expensive to target likely consumers as they once did.

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Another way to travel the world virtually: Google's Street View. (And, now, Apple's Look Around.)

And in Google's Maps, one can also look at photos of restaurants and their menus: Eat around the world!


Thanks for reading.

The Mostly-Quiet Edition Tuesday, August 9, 2022

The iPhone’s Focus Mode (Almost) Kept Me Off My Phone On Vacation, by David Pierce, The Verge

The feature is both not powerful enough and too complicated to use, but it’s a step in the right direction toward giving me actual control over my phone. I’m back at work, but I’m still in Vacation Mode, and my phone is still mostly quiet. And I might keep it that way.

Coming This Fall

iOS 16 Beta 5: Battery Percentage Now Displayed In iPhone Status Bar, by Juli Clover, MacRumors

With the fifth beta of iOS 16, Apple has updated the battery icon on iPhones with Face ID to display the specific battery percentage rather than just a visual representation of battery level.

Battery Percentage Finally Returns To iOS 16 And It’s Hideous, by Victoria Song, The Verge

Because the number appears within the battery icon, it has to appear fully charged at all times for readability. So even if you’ve got a paltry 10 percent battery left on your phone, the icon itself still looks full. In the few hours I’ve had this feature on, it’s admittedly caused my brain to short circuit. A full battery icon that reads 55? That just borks the visual cues we’ve all become accustomed to.

iOS 16 Beta 5 Adds ‘Copy And Delete’ Option For Sharing Screenshots Without Clutter, by Chance Miller, 9to5Mac

This new “Copy and Delete” feature will make it easier to snap a screenshot and quickly save it to your clipboard. You can then paste the image wherever you need to, such as in an email or iMessage. This should also help prevent your Photos library from getting cluttered with random screenshots.


Are You Bad At Bullet Journaling? Try These Digital Alternatives, by Jill Duffy, PC Magazine

Digital journals are superior to paper ones in so many ways. I'm not saying paper is bad or wrong to use, but there are clear advantages to working electronically.

This iPhone App Might Actually Help You Break Your Social Media Addiction, by Joel Cunningham, LifeHacker

This Shortcut Automation app—called “one sec” by its innovator, Frederik Riedel—seeks to inject some mindfulness into that mindless habit. To use it, you set up an automation that will trigger one sec to run when you attempt to open whatever social media, gaming, or other app is eating into your day. A simple, soothing bit of animation will interrupt the process, encouraging you to take a deep breath, before you tap a second time to confirm you truly do want to open that app—or not.


South Korea To Probe App Store Operators Over Suspected In-app Payment Violations, by Heekyong Yang, Reuters

South Korea's telecommunications regulator said on Tuesday it plans to launch an investigation into app store operators such as Apple Inc, Alphabet's Google and One Store over suspected violations of in-app payment law.


The Korea Communications Commissions (KCC) said in a statement it had conducted an inspection since May 17 to determine whether Google, Apple and One Store had violated the rules and had determined that all three might have done so.

With Grocery Prices Up, Families Turn To Food Waste Apps, by David Silverberg, Next City

As the cost of living skyrockets, consumers are looking to apps for discounts on surplus food. How much can these apps really do for their budgets – or our planet?

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While searching for SF Symbols for one of my hobby projects, I discovered there isn't a picture of the good old Floppy Disk.

Well, I guess I don't have to provide a 'Save' function then.



Thanks for reading.

The Ten-Thousand-Gemstones Edition Monday, August 8, 2022

No, Throttling And Overheating Isn't A Problem On M2 MacBook Air, by Roman Loyola, Macworld

A lot of these reports that use screaming headlines about the issue do actually point out that you have to be doing something atypical of a casual user to get the MacBook Air to throttle. But there are also a lot of reports that gloss over the fact that you’re probably not going to render a 60-minute 4K video in Final Cut Pro while you have 20 tabs open in Safari and you’re sorting your FileMaker Pro collection database of 10,000 gemstones. And when they gloss over this, it makes it seem like it’s an issue that affects everyone.


The fanless MacBook Air is by design–Apple isn’t overlooking anything. Its target user is “the rest of us,” everyday users with productivity tasks to get done. The MacBook Pro is for users who are demanding of processing power. Get the right Mac for what you want to do.

The One Thing About Apple’s Retail Stores That Has Always Bugged Me…, by John William Sherrod

Humans are accustomed to going to a dedicated place to line up and make a purchase, and it’s disorienting and frustrating when a customer doesn’t know where to go or who to see to complete their Apple Store experience so they can be on their way.

Atlas 6 Dual-Band Mesh Review: A Beginner-friendly Way To Add Mesh Networking To Your Home, by Amber Neely, AppleInsider

Adding a mesh system to your home can be a great way to ensure that all your favorite devices stay connected at all times.

The Linksys Atlas 6 Dual-Band Wi-Fi 6 Mesh System is user-friendly and promises to cover your home in up to 6,000 square feet of Wi-Fi, eliminating those frustrating random drops.

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I haven't experience phantom vibration syndrome from my iPhone for quite a long while already, but I thought I felt my iPhone vibrating in my pocket earlier today. I went through the usual suspects: Messages, Teams, Whatsapp, and didn't find any notifications.

Or did I configure Focus mode wrongly again?


Thanks for reading.

The Not-Too-Picky Edition Sunday, August 7, 2022

Is Apple’s M2 MacBook Air Any Good For Games?, by Craig Grannell, Wired

So if you just want to play the odd game to relax, enjoy casual fare or streaming, or aren’t too picky regarding AAA games, the Air will serve. And if you’re into classic games, OpenEmu remains the most polished and user-friendly emulation system around on the desktop.

It's Time To Embrace Physical Media Again, by Brendan Hesse, LifeHacker

Digital content comes and goes, servers go offline, and users lose content if they migrate to different apps, but that shelf of movies in your living room isn’t going anywhere. And as long as you have the right equipment, you can enjoy it forever, whenever you want, without having to subscribe to a new service, download an app, or fuss over your wireless connection.

What Is Jony Ive, Former Apple Chief Designer, Doing Now?, by Kaitlyn McInnis, Fast Company

The shift away from Apple has given Ive and Newson more time to focus on other big-name clients, including Airbnb and Terra Carta, on undisclosed projects. Most recently he was recruited by the Agnelli family to work with Ferrari and Ferrari’s holding company Exor. Details on exactly what Ive will be doing with the brand are slim—but certain car and design industry folk believe the collaboration could be to do with Ferrari’s first electric vehicle which is slated for release in 2025.

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Someone in my storage boxes, I still have many CDs (and DVDs? I cann't remember…) from magazines such as MacAddict and Inside Mac Games. It is probably nostalgia talking here, but I seem to remember being more delighted browsing the CDs than browsing Apple Arcade today.


Thanks for reading.

The Find-Our-Way-Out Edition Saturday, August 6, 2022

We Live In Notification Hell, by Allison Johnson, The Verge

We have a couple of meager tools at our hands, but the onus is on us to find our way out. Until I figure out my notification settings, I know I’m here for the long haul.

Enough With The Notifications – Unless They Are 'Important', by Alistair Dabbs, The Register

Notifications have changed from being a targeted line of app-to-user communication into a free-for-all of trivial one-sided chatter. And there seems to be no way of switching it all off.

On App Stores

Dropbox Branding And App Store SEO Shenanigans, by John Gruber, Daring Fireball

The App Store should discourage SEO nonsense like keyword spamming, not reward it.


Updated Apple Maps Design Expanding To Israel, Palestine And Saudi Arabia, by Juli Clover, MacRumors

It will be the sixteenth expansion of the updated ‌Apple Maps‌ design since the update first rolled out in September 2018. Apple in 2020 completed its U.S. rollout, and has since expanded to Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Singapore, the UK, Ireland, Spain, Portugal, Italy, France, and more.

Rocket Review: Blast Your Way Through The Difficulty Of Inserting Emoji On A Mac, by Glenn Fleishman, Macworld

If emoji delight you and are part of your language, stop exercising the tedium of using macOS’s Character View to find them. Install at least the free flavor of Rocket, and extend the ease of expression.

The Best Budgeting Apps Based On What Kind Of Spender You Are, by, LifeHacker

If you’re looking for a way to track your expenses and stay on top of your budget, you’ll need to choose the right spend tracking app. There are a lot of them to choose from, though, so your choice might vary depending on what’s important to you—things like ease, whether you share expenses, whether you’re self-employed, and how much you travel.

Satechi USB-C Slim Dock For 24-inch iMac Review: A Great Way To Add Additional Storage To Your iMac, by Amber Neely, AppleInsider

The USB-C Slim Dock is designed to add functionality to your iMac without cluttering your desk space. Crafted from aluminum, its slim design looks at home on your desk.

It also features a cutout that allows it to lay flush against the foot of your 24-inch Apple Silicon iMac, which prevents it from being bumped or jostled.

SwitchBot Releases Its First HomeKit Product With The SwitchBot Plug Mini, by Bradley Chambers, 9to5Mac

The SwitchBot Plug Mini is great for converting a “dumb lamp” to one that works with HomeKit. One aspect I appreciate about this device that others often forget – a manual button on the side if you need to turn it off/on without your iPhone or the use of Siri.


Reminder: Passkeys Are Not Just From Apple, by Umar Shakir, The Verge

When Apple introduced passkeys, its implementation of FIDO Alliance’s password-less secure authentication technology, the company did it in the most Apple way possible. It made an icon and printed a very on Apple brand-looking “Passkeys” next to it, complete in the San Francisco font. And if you’ve watched only part of the WWDC presentation on Apple’s passkeys, it’s possible to assume passkeys are an exclusive feature of Apple’s iCloud Keychain. Just a reminder: it’s not.

Unions Are Forming At Starbucks, Apple And Google. Here's Why Workers Are Organizing Now, by Katie Schoolov, CNBC

For decades, union membership has been on the decline. Yet in the last few months, workers have been organizing at a pace this country hasn't seen since the Great Depression.

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What if we have to wear masks indoors forever and ever? What if everyone will get infected with Covid once every one or two years? What if we need to get on wait-lists to buy phones and computers from now on?


Thanks for reading.

The Zeroed-In Edition Friday, August 5, 2022

Macs Look Like The Future Of PC Gaming, Whether PC Gamers Like It Or Not, by John Loeffler, TechRadar

There was a time when Apple was serious about gaming before it quit the arms race with Microsoft, but if Apple wanted to stage a comeback, it has a far more open field than many realize.


And while we might be a ways away from Apple M-series chips reaching their full potential as a rival to more traditional consoles like the PS5, the fact that Apple has zeroed in and is positioning itself for this trend shows it recognizes that the future of gaming is going to continue to move away from high-end gaming rigs and meet the gaming public where it actually is.

Apple Releases Studio Display Firmware Update To Fix Speaker Issue, by Juli Clover, MacRumors

Apple's release notes for the update confirm that it addresses an issue with the Studio Display speakers. Since the launch of the Studio Display, there have been complaints about the speaker quality. Apple last week sent out a memo to authorized service providers, acknowledging that some customers have had issues with the Studio Display speakers cutting out or offering distorted playback.


Apple TV+ Expands 'Friday Night Baseball' To Four New Countries, by Joe Rossignol, MacRumors

Apple today announced that its weekly MLB doubleheader “Friday Night Baseball” is now available to users in Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Germany, and Italy. The games remain free to watch on Apple TV+ without a subscription for a limited time.

A New App Called Banish Blocks Those Annoying ‘Open In App’ Banners, by Sarah Perez, TechCrunch

A new app for iPhone users can help you browse the web without being constantly bothered by pop-up panels that beg you to use the company’s app instead. The app, called Banish, is a Safari extension that helps remove the “open in app” banners from various websites and other popups that block content across a number of sites, like Reddit, TikTok, LinkedIn, Twitter, Quora, Medium, Yelp and some Google sites, to name a few.

Safari Extension Noir Adds Theming And Deeper Keyboard Shortcut Support, by John Voorhees, MacStories

The latest update to Noir takes the app’s original concept a step further with new theming options, theme sharing, and extensive keyboard shortcut support. It’s an excellent update that anyone who likes to tweak the colors used in their apps will appreciate.

These Apps Will Lull You Right To Sleep, by Meredith Dietz, LifeHacker

If you need a little help getting your thoughts into sleep mode, here are some apps that use guided meditation and other soundscapes in order to lull you into a good night’s rest.


Apple Warns Suppliers To Follow China Rules On 'Taiwan' Labeling, by Cheng Ting-Fang and Lauly Li, Nikkei Asia

Apple told suppliers on Friday that China has started strictly enforcing a long-standing rule that Taiwanese-made parts and components must be labeled as being made either in "Taiwan, China" or "Chinese Taipei," sources familiar with the matter told Nikkei Asia, language that indicates the island is part of China.

The OG Social Network: Other People’s Websites, by Jim Nielsen

So much online activity is less public now as companies strive to capture the value we create being online with each other — the value I’m creating right now by writing this and linking to other things, things not on Discord or Slack or Confluence but on other peoples’ websites.

Other people’s websites are the OG social network, and the optimist in me is going to riff on MLK’s quote: the social arc of the internet is long, but it bends towards individual websites.

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Gaming on Mac? I'll believe it when I see it.

Speaking of games, Apple should commission someone to get some remakes of old Mac games. Nevermind these games will not work on iPhone and iPad; after all, if Apple Arcade can have iOS-only games, it should also have Mac-only games.

Not sure what games to remake? Go read the Secret History of Mac Gaming.


Thanks for reading.

The Risk-Mitigation-Unit Edition Thursday, August 4, 2022

The Women Calling Out Apple’s Handling Of Misconduct Claims, by Patrick McGee, Financial Times

In interviews with 15 female Apple employees, both current and former, the Financial Times has found that Mohr’s frustrating experience with the People group has echoes across at least seven Apple departments spanning six US states.

The women shared allegations of Apple’s apathy in the face of misconduct claims. Eight of them say they were retaliated against, while seven found HR to be disappointing or counterproductive.


The accounts collected by the FT paint a portrait of a People team that acts less like a safe place for employees to go with complaints and more like a risk mitigation unit that protects bad managers. In six cases, women said speaking up had cast them as bad team members and resulted in their departure. In three instances, Apple offered multiple months of salary in exchange for not disparaging the company or being held liable.

What Happened To The Apple Union Campaign?, by Zoe Schiffer, The Verge

“The temperature for considering a union has gone cold, much to my disappointment,” says a worker in Texas, who asked to be anonymous for fear of retaliation. “From my perspective, Apple has appeased people here, but the underlying issues persist.”

But experts say it’s far too early to write off the union campaign. “That’s actually a lot of organizing activity for six months — most campaigns take several years,” says Kate Bronfenbrenner, director of labor education research at Cornell University’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations. “Don’t measure it against the Starbucks Corporation — the Starbucks campaign is the exception.”

The Only Surprise About Plepler’s New Hit Show, by Julia Alexander, Puck

In one of the aforementioned conversations, I was told there were concerns among producers about Apple’s commitment to marketing its shows—to the point that at least one explored hiring outside marketing gurus on their own personal dime to ensure the show got proper support.

Now, I’m not sure if Black Bird received insufficient marketing—especially since marketing feels more targeted than ever—but concerns from producers line up with previous reports about Apple TV+. One executive told Insider earlier this year that Apple TV+ suffered from “disruptive, last-minute marketing planning for projects that have been in the works for months; sloppy press rollouts; landing pages for series that weren’t ready in time.” As a former studio executive and I spoke more about their frustrations, they noted the obvious irony. Apple, worth a staggering $2.6 trillion, is the world’s most innovative product and marketing company. It seemed strange that this competency had yet to make it to the content group.

On App Stores

Chinese Mac Apps Found Abusing App Store, by Stephen Warwick, iMore

The seven apps were discovered in various sections of the Mac App Store, and found by Kleber to be "abusive" un a number of ways. Kleber says they all use "command-and-control exploits in order to bypass Apple's review team and scrutiny. For example, an app could determine whether it was in Apple's review process, changing its UI so as not to fall foul of any App Store guidelines before unleashing popups asking for money on unsuspecting users.


Apple Stores Get New Diagnostic Tool For iPhones With Unexpected Restart Issues, by Joe Rossignol, MacRumors

When a customer with an iPhone 11 or newer indicates their device is unexpectedly restarting, Apple Stores and Apple Authorized Service Providers can run a new “System Stability” diagnostic tool, which will evaluate the device’s analytics logs to determine if multiple unexpected restarts have taken place over the previous 14 days.

Nomad Launches Limited Edition Gold Base One And Base One Max MagSafe Chargers For iPhone And Apple Watch, by Michael Potuck, 9to5Mac

Earlier this year Nomad launched two beautiful, high-end MagSafe chargers for iPhone and Apple Watch with the Base One and Base One Max in two finishes. Now Nomad has launched a limited edition Gold Base One and Base One Max as the latest variant of the collection.


Cut The Cutesy Errors, by Alex Chan

You need to think about how somebody will be feeling when something goes wrong. What seems fun and light-hearted in your office may read very differently when you’ve just ruined somebody’s day.

The Joy Of Programming, by Donald Raab, Medium

I am very passionate about Eclipse Collections, but it’s not because I was ever particularly interested in collection frameworks. It’s because by using Eclipse Collections I can teach a Java developer how to have real fun while programming in the Java programming language. I have met so many Java developers over the years who either became managers or quit programming altogether because the language seemed to beat the love of programming out of them.


Apple Plans To Delay Launch Of iPadOS 16 Update By About A Month, by Mark Gurman, Bloomberg

Apple Inc. expects to delay its next major iPad software update by about a month, taking the unusual step of not releasing it at the same time as the new iPhone software, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

Can Apple's Ops Team Handle This Fresh Crisis?, by Jonny Evans, Computerworld

In Greek mythology, Zeus punished Sisyphus for cheating death by forcing him to roll a huge boulder uphill for eternity. I suspect Apple’s operations teams feels similarly cursed. Not only have they had to adapt to the pandemic, but they had to mitigate the effect of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and must now do what they can to salvage affairs as the situation in Taiwan decays, which could be an existential threat to the company and its business.

iMessage And The Secret Service, by Jason Snell, Six Colors

"In short, I suspect they were prohibited from using any iCloud service because iCloud isn’t FedRAMP certified for security, and when they wiped the device to set them up with the new MDM service, they could not restore even a local on-disk backup, because those backups would’ve stored the supervision identity and the MDM enrollment from the previous MDM service."

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Apple neet to put in a good amount of manpower effort into maintaining and evolving the Mac App Store: not just reviewers but also evangelist that have real power to make decisions and make meaningful changes to the platform.

Not that the iPhone and iPad App Stores are perfect, but the Mac App Store is really bad.


Thanks for reading.

The Try-to-Integrate Edition Wednesday, August 3, 2022

Apple Next Big Move Will Probably Be Smaller Than You Think, by Jason Snell, Macworld

Apple’s not picky about what it buys because it’s a cheapskate. In part, it’s picky because of what I just described–the fact that it’s got money to buy companies also means it has money to build stuff itself. Sometimes, buying a company is a really good shortcut–the purchase of Beats, for example, allowed Apple to get a subscription music service up and running much faster than they’d probably have managed on their own. And sometimes the shortcut isn’t worth it.

But there’s another big reason Apple is wary about acquisitions, and it has to do with the company’s very specific culture. If you didn’t notice, Apple’s a weird beast. It’s not like most other companies out there. It’s one thing to absorb a small team of people who bring expertise in an area Apple lacks–and even then, it’s probably quite a culture shock, and talent probably walks out the door rather than adapting to Apple’s culture! But it’s another to try to integrate a large company with its own brands and culture and get it to follow Apple’s rules. And make no mistake, if you’re owned by Apple you will follow Apple’s rules.

Daybridge Thinks It’s Time We Reimagined Digital Calendars, by David Pierce, The Verge

Building a social network on top of a calendar makes a lot of sense, and apps like IRL have found some success doing it. But Daybridge is trying to do an awful lot in a single app, from helping you schedule your time and make the most of it to helping you stay aware of all the time-sensitive things happening around you. It’s also going to have to convince a lot of people to ultimately pay for another calendar app and — maybe most important — start to rewrite some of our shared norms and unofficial rules about how calendars work and how we use them. Getting you to send your date a calendar invite is a big hurdle to clear.

Apple Watch Edition Begins Selling Out Ahead Of Series 8 Launch, by Joe Rossignol, MacRumors

Several of the high-end Apple Watch Series 7 models with titanium casings are listed as “currently unavailable” on Apple’s online store in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and select other countries. In the United States, availability of 41mm models is most depleted at this time, but a few 45mm models are out of stock too.


AppleCare+ With Theft And Loss Coverage For iPhone Now Available In Three Additional Countries, by Joe Rossignol, MacRumors

AppleCare+ with theft and loss coverage is available in three additional countries starting today, including France, Italy, and Spain.

A New App Transforms Times Square Into An Actual Animal Jungle This Month, by Anna Rahmanan, TimeOut

A new app-based augmented reality experience called Concrete Jungle has just debuted, literally transforming the public plazas into a playground for animals.


Locket, The Popular App That Lets You Post Photos To Your Loved Ones’ Homescreens, Raises $12.5M, by Aisha Malik, TechCrunch

“It’s been exciting to see the product resonate with people, but going forward, we have an even bigger opportunity to become the best way for people to stay in contact with those 10 to 15 people that matter the most,” Moss said. “The main impetus behind the funding is really just to accelerate; it’s just going to let us hire more people and continue to ship new features and become the product that is the best way to stay in contact with your close friends and family.”

You Are The Product, But With An Apple Twist, by Jonny Evans, Computerworld

The difference between Apple’s business plan and so many others in Silicon Valley is that while others offer compromised products for free to turn you into the product, Apple makes you pay for the products that you use. Though, as the data shows, its solutions remain every bit as addictive. You’re still the product, but that blend of privacy and agency is the unique Apple twist.

Are Apple App Store Profits Slowing? Investors Need To Know, by Martin Peers, Bloomberg

Analyzing Apple’s earnings can, on occasion, feel like looking at a jigsaw puzzle with some of the pieces missing.

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It's August. It's getting closer to me having complications on my iPhone lock screen. I'm excited.

But, as for new iPhones, I will not be upgrading my iPhone 12 mini. It's still working fine, and, if rumors are accurate, there will not be a small and light iPhone this year.

(Just for fun, I took out my iPhone X from my cupboard the other day. Boy, was that thing heavy.)


Thanks for reading.

The Unplug-from-Power Edition Tuesday, August 2, 2022

Apple Admits Studio Display Experiencing Speaker Issues, Offers Only Temporary Fix, by Sami Fathi, MacRumors

In a memo to authorized service providers, obtained by MacRumors, Apple acknowledges that customers may find themselves facing speaker issues with the company’s $1599 display. Apple says that customers facing issues should unplug the Studio Display from power, unplug any accessories or devices connected to the display, wait ten seconds, then reconnect the Studio Display to power. Apple explicitly notes this is not a hardware problem and implies that a future iOS update may address the issues.

Coming Soon?

Latest Xcode 14 Beta Corroborates Always-on Display Coming To iPhone 14 Pro, by Filipe Espósito, 9to5Mac

As noted by iOS developer @rhogelleim, the SwiftUI preview (which lets developers interact with their app projects in real time) now has a new behavior that is potentially related to the always-on display. Once the developer simulates the action of turning off the screen, the new lock screen widgets become semi-transparent while the clock remains there too.


Apple Preps Android Switchers For iPhone 14 With New Explainer Video, by José Adorno, 9to5Mac

The company talks about seven important points when switching to the iPhone.

First Batch Of Apple Arcade Games Removed As Developer Contracts End, by Tim Hardwick, MacRumors

Apple today removed 15 games from Apple Arcade, just over two weeks after it listed the first batch of titles set to leave the subscription service due to developer contract expirations.

Apple Adds Eight More Macs To Vintage Products List, by Joe Rossignol, MacRumors

Vintage products are typically ineligible for repairs at Apple Stores and Apple Authorized Service Providers, unless spare parts remain available.

'Focused Work' Productivity App Updated With New Design, Picture-in-picture, More, by Chance Miller, 9to5Mac

The app is designed to help you be more productive with so-called Focus Sessions, timers, and more. Focused Work 3 enhances the app with a new design, gestures, a new picture-in-picture feature, and more.

Lumen Metabolic Analyzer App Gets Macro Widget To Track Nutrition And See Real-time Impact, by Michael Potuck, 9to5Mac

Lumen, the pocket-sized device that measures your metabolism to help you achieve health and fitness goals has launched its latest update. After the iOS app got a built-in food log and macro tracker earlier this year, Lumen has launched a new widget on iPhone to more easily track your nutrition and see the impact it has on your metabolism in real-time.


Apple Drops Mask Requirements For Most Of Its Corporate Workers, by Zoe Schiffer, The Verge

Apple is dropping its mask mandates for corporate employees at “most locations,” according to an internal email from the COVID-19 response team, obtained by The Verge.

“Don’t hesitate to continue wearing a face mask if you feel more comfortable doing so,” the email reads. “Also, please respect every individual’s decision to wear a mask or not.”

Outsourcing Our Memory To Digital Devices May Actually Be Beneficial, by Rich Haridy, New Atlas

Does anyone remember phone numbers anymore? Or have all these little bits of information you used to memorize moved onto digital devices such as smartphones? Some have argued this outsourcing of our memory is damaging our ability to remember anything properly, but a new study suggests that is not the case. Using a digital device to remember some things may actually be freeing up our brains to remember more things overall. Unless of course, we lose our smartphones …

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Yes, I know that the Studio Display is not just a monitor. But seriously, a monitor that needs to be rebooted from time to time does not boost confidence in Apple's upcoming Car Play and iCar.


Thanks for reading.

The Plenty-of-Runway Edition Monday, August 1, 2022

Apple Already Sold Everyone An iPhone. Now What?, by The Economist

Apple’s business model “is evolving from maximising unit growth to maximising installed-base monetisation”, believes Erik Woodring of Morgan Stanley. He argues that pushing further into services could add another $1trn to the company’s $2.6trn market capitalisation. The average Apple user spends about $10 a month on Apple services (including app-store purchases), much less than they might spend on subscriptions to services like LinkedIn or Peloton, points out Mr Woodring, suggesting plenty of “runway” for growth.

Apple’s Hot iPhone Quarter Masks A Behind-the-Scenes Slowdown, by Mark Gurman, Bloomberg

I am a little bit more concerned about the iPad and Apple’s several-quarter-long struggle to produce enough supply of its tablets. Anecdotally, it appears many consumers have failed to find the iPad they’re looking for over the past year at retail stores. I also think Apple has made the iPad Air and iPad Pro a bit too similar, which may flummox some shoppers.

Coming This Fall

Third-Party Browsers Starting To Support Apple Pay In iOS 16 Betas, by Hartley Charlton, MacRumors

Moser found that ‌Apple Pay‌ is available in Microsoft Edge and Google Chrome as of iOS 16 developer beta 4, and other users have noticed ‌Apple Pay‌ support in Mozilla Firefox.

Moser noted that ‌Apple Pay‌ support continues to be unavailable on the macOS versions of Edge and Chrome, presumably since they do not use WebKit, Apple’s browser engine that is mandatory for third-party browsers on iOS and iPadOS.


$50 Gift Card With Apple TV Purchase Promotion Available Again At The US Apple Store, Also Launches In Other Countries, by Benjamin Mayo, 9to5Mac

This time, the promotion is also available in other countries. In the UK, customers can get a £40 gift card with Apple TV 4K or Apple TV HD purchase at the Apple Store. The deal is also available in European countries; customers in France, Spain and other markets can get a 50 euro gift card.

The New iPhone SE Might Do The Trick For Amateur Photography, by Ronn Tan, AugustMan

Although definitely not limited to just amateur photographers, the iPhone SE is perfect for simple and light photography because there are adequate and helpful features that automatically adjust your final images for you, if necessary. There’s no Night Mode but the iPhone SE’s camera does work well with most light. Moreover, it doesn’t hurt that you can toggle between photography functions rather smoothly too.

The $1,199 M2 MacBook Air Cuts Too Many Corners, by David Price, Macworld

It’s always tempting to go for the cheapest configuration of a new Apple product in order to enjoy the new design and processor at the lowest possible outlay. As far as the M2 MacBook Air is concerned, however, we would advise against this, since testing suggests you’ll be getting a machine that in certain respects performs no better than a cheaper model from 2020, and in a few is actually worse. Admittedly, you’re getting a bigger and better display, MagSafe, and a new design, but the M2 performance boost just isn’t there.

Pebblebee Card Review: Compact Card-shaped Tracker For The Find My Network, by Glenn Fleishman, Macworld

The Pebblebee Card performs a trick I didn’t think possible: it packs a rechargeable battery into a wallet-sized wireless tracker that works on Apple’s Find My network.

OtterBox 2-in-1 Charging Station With MagSafe Review: Compact Fast Charging For iPhone & Apple Watch, by Andrew O'Hara, AppleInsider

OtterBox is coming to market with a unique design as well as all the requisite certifications to make it an extremely tempting option.


Apple Brompton Road / Foster + Partners, by ArchDaily (Text description provided by the architects)

The store’s curved timber ceiling reflects the existing geometry of the building’s historic façade. The ceiling’s integrated fixtures merge seamlessly with the timber panels, having been designed to match their color and finish. A warm palette of materials has been carefully selected to create a calming and coherent environment for visitors and staff.

Apple Alleges Human Rights Violation By Colombian Court That Ordered 5G iPhone/iPad Sales Ban, Ericsson, And Its Lawyers; Invokes Art. 8 Of Universal Declaration Of Human Rights, by Florian Mueller, FOSS Patents

Apple leaves no stone unturned in its efforts to get Ericsson's Colombian iPhone/iPad injunction over a 5G standard-essential patent (SEP) lifted, and is now accusing Ericsson, its lawyers, and the court that ordered the injunction to violate basic human rights, invoking even Art. 8 of the famous Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Apple Should Scan iPhones For Child Abuse Images, Says Scanning Technology Inventor, by Alex Hern, The Guardian

“The pushback was from a relatively small number of privacy groups,” Farid said, speaking to the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) on the child safety group’s latest podcast. “I contend that the vast majority of people would have said ‘sure, this seems perfectly reasonable’, but yet a relatively small but vocal group put a huge amount of pressure on Apple and I think Apple, somewhat cowardly, succumbed to that pressure.

“I think they should have stuck their ground and said: ‘This is the right thing to do and we are going to do it.’ And I am a strong advocate of not just Apple doing this, but Snap doing this, and Google doing this – all the online services doing this.”

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If I remember correctly, I started paying for Apple's services since the .Mac days, and have continued with MobileMe, iCloud, and now Apple One. Except for iCloud+, Apple services have pivoted to content-based offerings such as music and television. (I still remember iCards fondly.)

There were rumors last year that Apple will introduce another service offering this year. So far, we haven't seen anything out of Cupertino. (And, no, I don't think it's Classical music either.) I'm hoping Apple geting into all-your-can-read e-books business, but I am doubtful Apple will get into another reading business. News+ isn't exactly bringing in anything for Apple, I don't think.

Oh, I know. The timing is just right for a pre-Facebook Instagram-like service. :-)


Thanks for reading.