Odds and Ends 

Apple is rebuilding Maps from the ground up

I’m not sure if you’re aware, but the launch of Apple Maps went poorly. After a rough first impression, an apology from the CEO, several years of patching holes with data partnerships and some glimmers of light with long-awaited transit directions and improvements in business, parking and place data, Apple Maps is still not where it needs to be to be considered a world-class service. Maps needs fixing. Apple, it turns out, is aware of this, so it’s re-building the maps part of Maps. It’s doing this by using first-party data…

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Headlines 

Putins Soccer Ball for Trump Had Transmitter Chip, Logo Indicates

Russian President Vladimir Putin’s gift of a soccer ball to U.S. President tweeted, “I’d check the soccer ball for listening devices and never allow it in the White House.” It turns out they weren’t entirely wrong. Markings on the ball indicate that it contained a chip with a tiny antenna that transmits to nearby phones. But rather than a spy device, the chip is an advertised feature of the Adidas AG ball. Photographs from the news conference in Helsinki, where Putin handed the ball to Trump, show it bore a…

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Headlines 

Apple, Samsung Declare Peace in Biggest Modern Tech Patent Fight

The biggest patent battle of the modern technology world has finally come to an end after seven years. Samsung Electronics Co. told a judge Wednesday they’d resolved the first filed but last remaining of the legal disputes that once spanned four continents. The string of lawsuits jihadist.” The ensuing litigation cost each company hundreds of millions of dollars in legal fees, and tested their reputations as innovators. ‘Sumo Wrestlers’ “The sumo wrestlers have tired of the wrestling match,” said Paul Berghoff, a patent lawyer with McDonnell Boehnen Hulbert & Berghoff…

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Headlines 

Why Apples AirPower Wireless Charger Is Taking So Long to Make

When Energous Corp., which is developing a wireless-charging system called WattUp, fell 4.3 percent on Thursday. The company has said it’s working with tier 1 device makers, sparking speculation that Apple is a partner. However, the iPhone maker is using a mix of its own chip and wireless technology from the Qi standard. Apple plans to produce the charger with

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Headlines 

Apple’s Tim Cook Calls for More Regulations on Data Privacy

Cook speaks at Beijing forum following Facebook controversy Situation is so dire well-crafted regulation is needed: Cook Forum in Beijing on Saturday. His comments will ramp up pressure on Facebook Inc. and other technology companies that rely on the huge reams of data gathered from billions of people to power their products, services and sales. Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg belatedly apologized for failing to better control its customers’ data following reports that it let Cambridge Analytica amass information on 50 million users. The social network’s shares have tumbled 14 percent following the…

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Headlines 

Apple, Google CEOs Bring Star Power as China Promotes Censorship

Apple Inc.’s Tim Cook and Google’s Sundar Pichai made their first appearances at China’s World Internet Conference, bringing star power to a gathering the Chinese government uses to promote strict online censorship. Apple’s chief executive officer gave a surprise keynote at the opening ceremony on Sunday, calling for future internet and AI technologies to be infused with privacy, security and humanity. The same day, Politburo member Wang Huning called for more aggressive government involvement online to combat terrorism and criminals online, even calling for a global response team to go…

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Headlines 

Apple Is Ramping Up Work on AR Headset to Succeed iPhone

With the headset at least two years away, Apple wants to make it easier for developers to bring new AR features to the iPhone. To that end, the company plans to release a new version of ARKit software tools as soon as 2018. They could help developers create software that remembers accurately where a digital object was placed in a virtual space, using a technology called persistent tracking; you look away, and the object is still there. The tools will also make it easier to create AR games for multiple…

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Odds and Ends 

Apple diversity head Denise Young Smith apologizes for controversial choice of words at summit

Apple’s Denise Young Smith sent an apology to team members at Apple today over comments she made at the One Young World Summit in Bogotá, Colombia. “Last week, while attending a summit in Bogota, I made some comments as part of a conversation on the many factors that contribute to diversity and inclusion….I regret the choice of words I used to make this point,” said Smith in the memo. As the company’s Vice President of Inclusion and Diversity, Smith has been the tip of Apple’s D&I spear during an era of…

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Headlines 

Friday’s iPhone X Pre-Orders Will Be Crucial for Apple

The most important date for shorter lines of expectant fans waiting outside stores on release days. So even though analysts widely expect iPhone X supplies to be limited early on, the device will still be available in 55 countries and territories. Apple also expects to have the iPhone X in many stores on Nov. 3 and said Tuesday that walk-in buyers should “arrive early.” Investors and analysts will be able to monitor how the wait times for delivery develop in the course of Friday, giving insights into demand. As more…

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Odds and Ends 

Apple would like to remind the FCC that it cant activate imaginary FM radios that iPhones dont have

Apple responded today to FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai, who issued a statement that “urged” Apple to activate the FM chips that he claimed are in iPhones in the name of public safety. The recent hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria were the hook for the reasoning. The only problem? Apple hasn’t even included FM radio chips in iPhones since the iPhone 6s. That’s right, Pai called on Apple to activate radios that don’t even exist. As John Gruber astutely points out, the statement has the stink of trying to shift blame…

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Odds and Ends 

Apple removes VPN apps from the App Store in China

The Chinese governments crackdown on the internet continues with the news that Apple has removed all major VPN apps, which help internet users overcome the countrys censorship system, from the App Store in China. The move was first noted by ExpressVPN, a provider based outside of China,which said in a blog post all major VPN apps including its own had been purged from Apples China-based store. The company shared a note from Apple (below) explaining that its app was removed because it includes content that is illegal in China. The…

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Odds and Ends 

At this months WWDC, Apple unveiled refined accessibility tools

Steven Aquino is a freelance tech writer and iOS accessibility expert. More posts by this contributor: The pleasure and the pain of the accessible smart home How auto unlock makes the Mac more accessible Cover Apple for a while and you start to notice a general cadence to the companys behavior and strategy. To name one example, consider the last several macOS releases. In 2009, , Apple announced Snow Leopard,which famously eschewed new features for what the company described as hundreds of refinements [and] new core technologies. Snow Leopard subsequently set off…

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