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Apple Plans on Combining iPhone, iPad, Mac Apps by 2021

Things are about to get a lot easier for iDevelopers in the coming years: Apple is currently working on a new software development kit allowing coders to create a single app that works on the iPhone, iPad, and Mac (alternate source sans paywall). The initiative, dubbed "Marzipan," will be fully realized by 2021: "developers won’t have to submit their work to different Apple App Stores, allowing iOS apps to be downloaded directly from Mac computers -- effectively combining the stores."

The work coincides with the company’s preparations to merge more of the underpinnings of its hardware. Currently, iPhones and iPads are powered by Apple processors, while Macs use Intel Corp. chips. Apple plans to start transitioning some Macs to its own chips as early as 2020, Bloomberg News reported last year. Despite the app merger plan, Apple has said it won’t combine iOS and macOS into a single operating system.

Posted by Megalith February 24, 2019 10:05 AM (CST)

16,000 Cheaters Have Been Banned from Apex Legends

Respawn Entertainment has announced that over 16,000 cheaters have been identified and banned from Apex Legends. The development team acknowledged that "cheaters suck" and asked the community to gather evidence of them cheating. They are looking into adding a report feature to the game and will investigate flagged accounts. In the same post, they asked the community to report instances of crashing. Dataminers have discovered references to a Survival Mode, Solo Mode, and Duo Mode. The same dataminer leaked two new playable characters otherwise known as "Legends." One is called Octane and the second is named Wattson. Lastly, YouTube personality Battle(non)sense brilliantly analyzed the netcode of Apex Legends and found it lacking. In other Apex Legends news, the VR game Apex Construct on Steam has experienced a 4000% uptick in Steam Store visits since Apex Legends was released. Chinese gamers have purchased more copies of Apex Construct in the last seven days than all of 2018 combined! The devs admit that "Most likely these units will be refunded, but our books look pretty good at the moment;-)." The Steam Community team is looking into the misunderstanding, as Apex Construct was out before Apex Legends, so no intentional scamming was intended.

I took a look at the networking of Apex Legends and I was negatively surprised by what I found in a game released in 2019 by a studio like Respawn Entertainment.

Posted by cageymaru February 18, 2019 5:56 PM (CST)

Chinese Telecommunications Hardware Is About to Be Banned by Executive Order

The United States is gearing up for the widespread installation of 5G networks, but Chinese hardware may have no part in it: there is chatter an executive order will soon be issued banning such for upgrades of cellular networks. "As contracts for the installation of 5G networks are in the works, the White House is looking to send a message that security must not be compromised for the next generation of wireless connectivity."

The order is part of a series of announcements leading up to Mobile World Congress designed to showcase what the United States is doing to prevent cyber attacks from being harmful to the nation. Huawei has been under great scrutiny in recent times, but remember that ZTE was also heavily put under the microscope not long before. Accusations against the Chinese telecom companies have ranged from theft of trade secrets to violations of trade embargoes. As charges mount against Huawei executives, there is compelling reason to believe that the United States will not be awarding any contracts to Chinese businesses.

Posted by Megalith February 10, 2019 1:40 PM (CST)

The Army's Next-Generation Rifle Will Be "The iPhone of Lethality," Officials Say

Researchers with the US Army’s Next Generation Squad Weapon program, who have been brainstorming a replacement for the M4 carbine and M249 light machine gun, are reportedly looking to the iPhone for inspiration. Officials believe Apple found success when it focused on platform rather than bells and whistles, ultimately providing a better path for expandability. The Army’s next-generation weapons are expected to flaunt a plethora of capabilities (e.g., onboard processor hardened against cyberattacks), so they’re adopting the same philosophy.

"Imagine that Steve Jobs and his engineers were trying to convert the iPod Touch to the first 3G iPhone," said Army Col. Elliott Caggins, project manager for soldier weapons. "There were a thousand technologies they could have put in the first iPhone but they were looking to mature the platform before they could actually go onto the system. We have hundreds of capabilities we can put into this weapons system, but we want to do it by holistically creating a system that that takes advantage of everything we've done in the past," he added. "This means its capabilities will only grow, just as the iPhone's did."

Posted by Megalith February 10, 2019 1:25 PM (CST)

Apple: You Can't Sue Us for Slowing Down Your iPhones Because We're "Contractors"

Apple is in the process of defending itself from a class-action lawsuit alleging they intentionally slowed down processors with an iOS update, but desperation appears to be growing based on their legal team’s newest defense on why they shouldn’t have to pay up. In what is described as a "bizarre" argument, lawyers say Apple is essentially a building contractor: a typical job (iPhone) may involve excessive destruction (degraded hardware), but initial consent (user agreeing to updates) pardons the contractor from such liabilities.

Apple is like a building contractor you hire to redo your kitchen, the tech giant has argued in an attempt to explain why it shouldn't have to pay customers for slowing down their iPhones. Addressing a bunch of people trying to sue it for damages, the iGiant's lawyers told a California court this month: "Plaintiffs are like homeowners who have let a building contractor into their homes to upgrade their kitchens, thus giving permission for the contractor to demolish and change parts of the houses." They went on: "Any claim that the contractor caused excessive damage in the process sounds in contract, not trespass."

Posted by Megalith February 03, 2019 1:40 PM (CST)

Qualcomm Posts $1.5 billion Bond to Stop Some German iPhone Sales

VentureBeat reports that Qualcomm posted about $1.5 billion in security bonds to enforce a ban on certain iPhones in Germany. Qulacomm won the case late last month, but had to pay this bond to actually enforce the ban. Apple recently ran into similar legal trouble in China, but that order only affected retail iPhones running old, outdated software, and VentureBeat didn't elaborate on how far this German court order goes. However, Qualcomm allegedly sees their case in China as a gateway to legal action against newer devices, and its possible that they have the same idea in this German case.

According to the court order, Apple has to stop the sale, offer for sale and importation for sale of all infringing iPhones in Germany. Apple had said it was appealing the decision, but the order goes into effect as soon as Qualcomm posts the bond. The court also ordered Apple to recall infringing iPhones from third party resellers in Germany, according to a statement by Qualcomm.

Posted by alphaatlas January 03, 2019 11:21 AM (CST)

Apple Lowered Its Q1 Revenue Guidance Due to Slow iPhone Sales in China

Apple has lowered its Q1 revenue guidance in a letter to investors. CEO Tim Cook also conducted an interview with CNBC in which he discusses factors such as rising trade tensions, the strong U.S. dollar and its effect on sales of iPhone products in China. He noted other factors such as users in other countries disregarding the new iPhone during this upgrade cycle. Tim Cook said that he would guide the company to "focus really deeply on the things we can control." This news cast a dark cloud over the tech sector and tech stocks got hammered in after hours trading.

Most importantly, we are confident and excited about our pipeline of future products and services. Apple innovates like no other company on earth, and we are not taking our foot off the gas. Expectations are high for Apple because they should be. We are committed to exceeding those expectations every day. That has always been the Apple way, and it always will be. Tim

Posted by cageymaru January 02, 2019 9:27 PM (CST)

Ohio Man Says iPhone XS Max Caught Fire and Exploded in His Pocket

Following last month’s report of an iPhone X blowing up after being upgraded to iOS 12.1 comes a new allegation against the newer, larger XS Max model: Ohio resident Josh Hillard claims his three-week-old device caught fire and "exploded" in his pants after he noticed a strange smell and burning sensation on his leg. Hillard is now exploring legal options against the company, as the Apple Store he visited wouldn’t give him a replacement on the spot, nor compensate him for his ruined clothing.

"Left no other option, I had to exit the room since there was a female in the break room with me and remove my pants. I ran to the boardroom where I got my shoes and pants off as fast as possible. A VP of our company put the fire out with a fire extinguisher because he heard me yelling. Once the phone was extinguished, I was left with a hole in my pants, fire extinguisher on my pants/shoes, and some pain/irritation in my buttocks region where the pocket of my pants was located."

Posted by Megalith December 30, 2018 1:35 PM (CST)

Foxconn to Assemble High End iPhones in India

Reuters claims that Foxconn will start assembling "top-end" Apple iPhones in India as early as 2019. This is reportedly the first time Foxconn is making Apple's premium phones in India, and the source claims the Foxconn will invest about $356 million to expand an existing plant in Sriperumbudur, which could create about 25,000 new jobs . Another source, who corroborated the claims, said the move "could help both it and Apple to limit the impact of a trade war between the United States and China." Reuters notes that Apple has already produced lower-cost iPhones like the SE and 6S in India, but the move still represents a big shift out of China.

Foxconn, the world's biggest electronics contract manufacturer, is considering setting up a factory in Vietnam, Vietnamese state media reported this month. If that goes ahead, it will be one of the biggest recent steps by a major company to secure an additional production base outside of China. Foxconn has previously admitted the China-U.S. trade spat was its biggest challenge and that its senior executives were making plans to counter the impact. "Widening iPhone manufacturing in India through Foxconn will allow Apple to hedge the risk of any new U.S. trade policies," said Navkendar Singh, an associate research director at International Data Corporation. Indian taxes on import of devices and components have also heightened Apple's headache in a market where it has only a 1 percent share by smartphone shipments.

Posted by alphaatlas December 27, 2018 8:40 AM (CST)

Woman Sues Apple over iPhone Notch

A woman claims Apple intentionally misled customers with their iPhone X and iPhone X Max marketing shots, which showed the devices without a notch: a planetary-themed wallpaper with a black background was allegedly chosen as a clever and intentional way of hiding the display’s actual design. The complaint also says "Apple shouldn't count pixels on the corners of the device in its advertising, because they are rounded off."

In a complaint filed Friday in the Northern District of California, Courtney Davis' lawyers accused Apple of designing its advertising to obscure the notch, leading Davis to believe that the iPhone XS Max she preordered wouldn't actually come with a notch. When the marketing images were leaked in August, many tech commentators said the black background effectively hid the notch from being readily apparent.

Posted by Megalith December 15, 2018 12:45 PM (CST)

Qualcomm Files New Chinese Suits Against iPhone XS and XR

Citing a paywalled report from the Financial Times, Reuters reports that Qualcomm is asking courts to ban the iPhone XS and XR from sale in China. The company apparently gained confidence from its win on Monday, and claims it intends to use the same patents against Apple's newer phones and operating systems.

The case, brought by Qualcomm, is part of a global patent dispute between the two U.S. companies that includes dozens of lawsuits. Apple said on Monday that all of its phone models remained on sale in mainland China and that it had filed a request for reconsideration with the court, the first step in a long appeal process that could end up at China's Supreme Court. Apple had also said its three models released in September were not part of the case. Qualcomm and Apple did not immediately respond to Reuters' requests for comment.

Posted by alphaatlas December 13, 2018 10:11 AM (CST)

Fortnite, PUBG and Other Games Allegedly Banned in China

Citing a Reddit thread, PCGamesN reports that popular games like PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds, Paladins, Fortnite, and H1Z1 have been been banned in China, while others like World of Warcraft, Overwatch, Diablo and League of Legends require "corrective action." According to the Reddit post, the 20 new games that were reportedly being "reviewed" by the government were actually existing titles. Reddit can be a sketchy source, but an independent report from seems to corroborate the claims. Experts note that this is bad news for publishers inside and outside of China. Ironically, the government crackdown could also encourage Chinese publishers to start pushing their games overseas.

The analysts warns that this does not bode well for anyone wanting to release in China. "Indications are that existing games with commercial licenses are not exempt from review, meaning more disruption for the market running into 2019," the firm wrote. "This will mean additional costs for publishers and developers looking to operate their games in China, even those with existing popular and commercially successful titles many of which appear to need changes to satisfy the regulators that they are suitable for younger players." The firm also notes that if the Ethics Committee is re-reviewing previously released titles, the waiting list for new games hoping to release in China "likely to be longer than expected", predicting the impact could be felt "deep into 2019."

Posted by alphaatlas December 11, 2018 11:41 AM (CST)