Apple generates a lot of news, and it can be hard to keep up. If your mind was on other things this week, our Saturday morning roundup of Apple-related headlines will bring you up to date.
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Apple attacked over ‘government spyware’
Last week Apple announced that it will soon begin
scanning photos uploaded to iCloud for child sexual abuse material. Cybersecurity and privacy experts met the announcement with scepticism, with many warning of potential abuse of this system: specifically, they say it could encourage oppressive governments to ask Apple to police other types of illegal content.
Apple says it will refuse such requests. Still, this change, which will arrive in
At the start of the week the CEO of Epic Games – who has some history with Apple –
attacked the company for installing what he described as “government spyware”, and this set the tone for the coverage that was to follow. Fortunately the Macalope is here to talk you through the
facts, fiction, and fantasy of the situation – be concerned, not histrionic, advises our horned columnist – and Michael Simon offers
Video of the week
In response to the stories above, Macworld executive editor Michael Simon and Computerworld executive editor Ken Mingis join Juliet Beauchamp to discuss Apple’s privacy rules and why security experts are concerned about potential misuse of the firm’s new surveillance tool.
News in brief
celebrated a victory this week that saved the company a cool $308.5m. That was the size of the damages levied
in March this year for patent infringement, but District Judge Rodney Gilstrap disagreed, ruling that plaintiff Personalized Media Communications deliberately delayed its patent applications in order to milk technology companies for more money.
Fans of Apple’s legal department shouldn’t celebrate too much, however, because the firm was
forced to accept a settlement this week after its claims of copyright infringement against Corellium were struck down on grounds of “fair use”. The firms thus avoid a trial, which would have begun next week.
Following recent criticisms of its demand that employees
return to the office, Apple has again come under the spotlight over its HR practices. The firm’s “people department” has repeatedly blocked internal pay surveys intended to determine if claims of equal pay for equal work hold up, an approach that critics say
may violate US worker protections.
David Price argues that
iPhone numbering needs to stop, in Different Think, our regular Tuesday column.
A survey has found that
44% of iPhone owners plan to upgrade to the iPhone 13, which is a small increase on the equivalent figure for the iPhone 12 last year. We have a slight quibble with the methodology, which is explained in the linked article.
Eddy Cue’s got a new job title, and it offers a hint about Apple’s new priorities as a company.
Apple’s TV+ streaming service has reportedly made its first series cancellation. Songwriting drama Little Voice has
not been renewed for a second season.
There’s a crack in the iPhone foundation
and it could get a lot worse, warns Jason Snell.
Software, bugs & problems
Frustrated that you’ve not been able to run Windows 11 on your Mac? Cheer up: the newly announced
version 17.0 of Parallels Desktop is
up to the challenge.
This was a very rough week for the makers of 1Password, the (previously) popular password-management Mac app. Version 7 of the software, which has gone into Early Access testing, sees a switch to Electron, and users are
not happy about this decision.
bug in iOS 14 has been spotted: it prevents the Full Page Screenshot function from working if Safari is launched from a folder.
will fix lens flare automatically, it’s emerged.
The rumour mill
colourful, completely redesigned MacBook Air is on the way, says the respected pundit Ming-Chi Kuo. This machine will be launched in mid-2022, he reckons.
The iPhone 13 will
cost the same as the iPhone 12, and feature a new
Portrait Mode for video.
More developments in the slow-burn drama that is Apple’s Project Titan, also known as the
Apple Car. The company has spoken to several Korean components manufacturers,
says a source, who adds that “without partnerships with Korean vendors, Apple won’t be able to complete its electric vehicle business plan”.
New MacBook Pro models in both 14in and 16in screen sizes
have now entered mass production, according to sources in the supply chain. Apple is reportedly aiming to reach production of 800,000 units a month by the end of November.
preparing OLED screens for a new iPad Air, but don’t get too excited: it won’t launch until next year.
Video of the week (part II)
The semiconductor shortage has wreaked havoc on manufacturers, and Apple will soon feel the pinch. In the company’s
Q3 earnings call, chief executive Tim Cook said supply constraints around “legacy nodes” – including chips for the display, ports and audio, not the A- and M-series processors that Apple designs for its devices – will affect iPhone sales.
In the video embedded below, Macworld executive editor Michael Simon and Computerworld executive editor Ken Mingis discuss how the chip shortage will affect Apple, why Apple is considering using its own chips in monitors and other revelations from the earnings call.
Apple deals of the week
I’ve embedded a list of the best current Apple deals below, but other than that, we’re done for this week. See you next Saturday, and stay Appley!
Top 10 Apple Deals
Apple 11in iPad Pro (2021, M1, 2TB) – Wi-Fi + Cellular
We’re not sure if Amazon will bring back the £639 discount we saw in October on this iPad Pro M1 variant, but almost £600 off is still an excellent deal. See our review of the 11in iPad Pro with M1.
Adobe Creative Cloud – All Apps (1 Year)
Was: £49.94 per month
£39.95 per month
Adobe’s slashed 20% off its Creative Cloud subscription prices. The offer ends 14 April.
Apple AirPods 3
The brand-new AirPods 3 offer better battery performance, an updated design, and support for Spatial Audio and Adaptive EQ. Save £10 from Amazon or Boots.
Smarty 12GB data SIM-Only
Was: £8 per month
£4 per month
(50% off for 3 months)
Grab three months of 12GB data for just £4 per month. If you’re after more data, you can see all its plans here. You can cancel anytime.
Apple iPad mini (2021, 6th gen, 64GB, Cellular)
This is the best deal we’ve seen on the iPad mini you can get the 64GB Cellular (RRP £619) for just £464 – which is less than the RRP for the Wi-Fi model!
Apple MacBook Air, M1, 8-core CPU, 7-core GPU, 256GB (2020)
From: John Lewis
For some time a gang of retailers have been offering the entry level MacBook Air for £889, but this month John Lewis has dropped the price to £887, RRP £999. Very has the same deal.
You can also get the £999 MacBook Air with 8-core CPU and 7-core GPU in gold for £889 from Currys or Amazon, and AO.
Apple Watch Series 6 (40mm)
Bag the last gen Watch 6 for under £300 at Amazon’s Spring Sale!
Apple Watch Series 6 (44mm, Cellular)
Amazon’s just slashed £160 off the Watch Series 6 with Cellular connectivity as a part of its Spring Sale.
Apple 10.2in iPad (2021, 256GB, Wi-Fi)
Save over £30 on the latest iPad in Amazon’s Spring Sale. This is the cheapest price around, and the lowest we’ve ever seen this model.
Logitech Combo Touch Keyboard for iPad Pro 11
Save an excellent £74 on this Logitech keyboard for the iPad Pro 11 – this is currently the best discount we can see. The Combo Touch works with the 1st, 2nd and 3rd gen models.
Grab this set of Apple AirTags for just under £80 – that’s a saving of roughly £9 per AirTag, which costs £29 separately.
Apple Watch Series 7 (GPS, 41 mm)
The latest Apple Watch also has a solid £50 discount in Amazon’s Spring Sale. The price did drop as low as £314 early last month but currently, this is the best price around.
Beats Solo 3 Headphones
Get £80 off the Beats Solo3 Wireless on-ear headphones (which we gave four stars in our review). They’re available in a range of colours.
Apple AirPods Pro with MagSafe charging case
From: John Lewis
Amazon’s excellent £64 saving on the AirPods Pro from March is no longer available. Multiple sites are selling for £189 (a £50 saving), including AO and Laptops Direct – but we’d go with John Lewis on account of its two-year guarantee.
Apple Watch SE (44mm, GPS)
Save a solid £20 on last year’s Apple Watch SE from Amazon.
Want a more affordable alternative to the Apple Pencil? Check out the Logitech Crayon, which works with all iPads from 2018 and later.
Apple iPhone 12 mini (256GB)
The 256GB iPhone 12 mini has over £100 off from Amazon.
Apple iPad mini (2021, 6th gen)
From: Currys PC World
A handy saving on Apple’s new iPad mini model for 2021, but note that this price applies to the Starlight colour finish only. eBuyer is matching the deal on certain colours.
Apple iPad Air (2022, 256GB, Wi-Fi + Cellular)
KRCS has knocked money off the 2022 iPad Air. You will find savings across the whole range.
Apple MacBook Air, M1, 8-core CPU, 8-core GPU, 512GB (2020)
An excellent deal, this. Save money on the MacBook Air with 8-core CPU and 8-core GPU from Very. The discount applies to the silver version only.
This deal is only slightly better than Currys who has the silver model for £1,099.97. John Lewis had the same deal, but it is currently out of stock there.