new Mini mysteries
Since the release of the updated Mac mini, there has been a lot of chatter in the MacNN forums regarding some of the choices made by Apple to use slower processors and take away the ability to upgrade RAM among other things. Yesterday Professional Poster "badidea" took to the forums reporting serious problems with re-partitioning their startup disk, and they are pleading for help from fellow forum members.
2011 Core i7 iMac vs Retina i5 iMac
After having some display backlight and logic board issues with an older iMac, Mac Enthusiast "Boochie" has decided now would be a good time to start thinking about a new iMac. A post they made in the MacNN forums sparked a debate about what would be a better choice, a 2011 iMac with a Core i7 processor, or a new Retina iMac with an i5 processor. Yesterday, one Forum Regular was trying to determine the best cable to use to connect a Mac mini to a Dell UltraSharp monitor, and asked fellow forum members for their thoughts.
Apple failing to acknowledge video defect, suit says
Following up on earlier talk, lawfirm Whitfield Bryson & Mason has filed a class-action lawsuit against Apple on behalf of owners of the 2011 MacBook Pro. For some time, users of the laptop have been complaining about visual artifacts, blank screens, and/or crashes, which appear to be linked to problems with AMD graphics hardware. Apple, though, hasn't offered to fix affected systems outside of warranty coverage without charging high fees, and using replacement parts that may cause the exact same trouble.
Blames distribution system, not code
Via Re/code's first annual Code/Mobile conference, Apple's VP for iPhone marketing, Greg Joswiak, has apologized for the botched iOS 8.0.1 update in September. "It wasn't the software itself it was the way it was distributed," he explains in an interview. "We're very sorry."
Will replace bank-sponsored system with competing mobile wallet platform next year
Following reader complaints of Rite-Aid stores no longer accepting Apple Pay or Google Wallet payments (following a brief period where both worked properly) and a "cone of silence" from PR representatives, leaked documents have revealed that the reversal by Rite-Aid on accepting NFC-based payments was deliberate, and that it may never accept Apple Pay, since it is planning to go with a rival mobile payments platform -- sometime next year.
Fix for card images in progress, sources say
Although the service appears to be working in general, some banks supporting Apple Pay are encountering some early technical problems. One issue is that in some cases, the correct card designs aren't being displayed in Passbook. Affected cards will show generic logos for their associated institutions, and possibly lack descriptions as well, which can make numbers the only way to distinguish between them when a person has multiple cards from the same firm. Sources claim that a fix for the bug is already underway.
All iOS apps must support 64-bit code??
One headline on MacNN this week has caused a bit of a stir in the forums, when Mac Elite "WizOSX" pointed out that Apple has announced that all iOS apps must support 64-bit code by February. One Fresh-Faced Recruit is having trouble playing video with their Windows notebook computer, and is wondering if the MacBook Air would be able to handle it better.
Includes delayed SMS Relay tech, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth fixes
As planned, Apple has released iOS 8.1 to the public. The main addition is support for Apple Pay, but a number of other important features are present. These include beta support for iCloud Photo Library, and the return of the Camera Roll to the Photos app. SMS Relay enables SMS/MMS messaging via a nearby Mac or iPad, and people can now force a device to use 2G, 3G, or 4G for data, instead of it selecting networks automatically. A minor photo-related improvement generates alerts whenever there's too little storage to start a timelapse video.
Socketed CPU, same components as previous model shown in breakdown
Apple repair purveyors iFixit have given their regular disassembly treatment to Apple's new 27-inch 5K iMac. As the machine has re-used the chassis from the last generation of iMac, and has only minor changes to the internals apart from the display, the repairability score remains the same at a five out of 10. Notably, the company has found a larger display data connector, with the fused LCD and taped-down display hindering repair efforts.
Time for a new iMac?
Since yesterday marked the release of the new 27-inch iMac, the MacNN forums have been abuzz with chatter about this latest addition to the Mac family, and finally there is an answer to the age-old question "is it time for a new iMac?" and it looks like that answer is a resounding "yes." The official OS X 10.10 Yosemite thread was started yesterday by "Eden Aurora," where users can share their experiences and first impressions.
Disabling, re-enabling to happen through software updates
Apple is planning to temporarily disable blood glucose tracking in iOS 8's Health app, the company says in a new support document. It explains that the app is currently set to track glucose levels using mg/dL, a value adopted in the US and some other countries. But some regions, such as the UK and Australia, depend on mmol/L; the discrepancy can cause problems, even though iOS' underlying HealthKit platform supports both measurements.
Plan only pegged for 'the near future'
Authorized Apple service providers -- and presumably Apple itself -- will soon start servicing Beats speakers and headphones, according to a memo to providers obtained by a Greek website. The message states that "in the near future, Apple will be responsible for providing service" for Beats products. The company adds that it is now sending out contract addendums, and will publish articles explaining the exact processes for handling Beats gear.
Yosemite…the time is nigh.
MacNN forum-goers anxiously await the official release of OS X Yosemite, with some spreading rumors about the possible release date, and others still reporting bugs they have found in GM releases of the OS. "Waragainstsleep" is looking for a way to quickly add plist files to a spreadsheet, and wonders if anyone has any suggestions.
List of affected Belkin devices, cause of incident both unknown
Some of accessory manufacturer Belkin's router customers are experiencing connectivity issues, predominantly with older models. For reasons unknown, possibly due to a silent, automatic firmware update, some Belkin networking products are refusing connection to the Internet, but maintaining local area network connectivity. Some models can be restored by pointing Domain Name Services to Google's or other providers' services.
Could enable Apple Pay testing
Apple is seeding a second beta of iOS 8.1 to developers, users note. The contents of the code are unknown, but it likely builds out upcoming Apple Pay support, references to which were found in the first beta. If recent rumors are true the new beta may enable Apple Pay testing, and prefigure a public launch of v8.1 on or around October 20th.
Should halt further infections
Apple has issued a silent update to Xprotect, the anti-malware system in OS X, to detect and block the inaccurately-named "iWorm" trojan uncovered last week. The new definitions actually mention three variants, identified as "OSX.iWorm.A," "OSX.iWorm.B," and "OSX.iWorm.C." It's not clear what the differences between them might be.
Search engine has scrubbed 'tens of thousands' of links to stolen photos
Google has responded to the letter threatening legal action should Google not purge the Internet of stolen, and sometimes intimate, photos of celebrities. The search engine has denied that it is intentionally profiting on the scandal, and instead has acted quickly and appropriately to takedown requests by removing "tens of thousands" of images from Google search results.
Formerly used Reddit as go between to steal user data
[Updated with corrected information and further details] A new Trojan threat, possibly disguised as a fake unauthorized build of OS X 10.10 Yosemite, is making the rounds by taking in users who attempt to pirate software. The new malware, dubbed "iWorm" by Russian research firm "Dr. Web," has supposedly been installed by duped users on over 17,000 unique IP addresses worldwide thus far. Users would have had to have downloaded and installed the software in order to be victimized by the Trojan, which is mostly aimed at gathering user data.
Mac OS X optimization utilities, iPhone 6, iOS 8
This week has been rather slow in the MacNN forums, however debates rage on about the new iPhone 6. Conversations continue about problems with iOS 8, and of course our helpful forum-goers assist with troubleshooting. One Fresh-Faced Recruit has recommended some good Mac utilities to use for optimizing OS X. In the thread titled "iPhone 6 or iPhone 6+," members continue to debate the usefulness of each device, and why they would pick one over the other.
refurbished Mac Pro for $2,549, 4K TVs and more
At Apple's Online Store, save $450 on the refurbished current-generation Mac Pro, which has been reduced to $2,549 from $2,999. That discount makes this around $300 less than buying it in brand new condition anywhere else. This Mac Pro features a 3.7GHz Intel quad-core Xeon E5 processor, 12GB of RAM, 256GB of flash storage and dual AMD FirePro D300 graphics cards. A one-year warranty on parts and labor is provided by Apple.
Issue inconsistent between users, devices
Customers trying to use the App Store are currently experiencing a variety of problems, according to complaints. Some are seeing vague error messages, while others are simply unable to finish downloads; many users are unaffected. For those who are impacted, the trouble can interfere with both the iOS and Mac App Stores, and any version of iOS or OS X.
Editor issues open letter to Apple CEO Tim Cook
Apple has dropped a German publication, Computer Bild, from receiving review units or covering company events, according to the publication's editor-in-chief, Axel Telzerow. Like some other websites, CB recently decided to produce a video testing whether the iPhone 6 Plus can be bent more easily than other phones. The clip (below) has managed to gather over 510,000 views so far on YouTube; its popularity apparently caught the attention of Apple, which contacted CB to revoke press privileges.
Apple developing fix
The current versions of iOS 8 is creating problems for people who pair their iPhones with Bluetooth devices, particularly car audio systems, according to complaints. In the case of cars, devices with the firmware may refuse to pair, fail to play audio, or disconnect when a phonecall comes in. The problem can't be solved with iOS 8.0.2, and is affecting many automotive brands, including BMW, Ford, Hyundai, Toyota, and others.
Apparently tied to iOS 8
A bug involving the iOS App Store is causing it to display inappropriate apps under the various Kids categories, according to complaints. Browsing those categories' Top Charts sections, users can currently spot many apps that would normally fall under the All Categories umbrella. This includes obvious mistakes, such as gambling and dating apps.
Solves unusual bureaucratic obstacle
Apple is now allowing people to participate in its iPhone 5 Battery Replacement Program even if they've had their phone's display fixed using third-party components, according to a notice on the company's private website for service providers. Apple's previous position was that it wouldn't replace batteries in phones that may have seen damage, and as such it required broken displays to be fixed first. If someone fixed a display on their own, though, Apple would deny them a new battery.
Apple may have unjustly denied repairs for older iPhones, iPods
Participants in a class action lawsuit regarding liquid damage indicators for the iPhone and iPod touch are beginning to receive settlement checks, accounts say. In April 2013, Apple agreed to pay $53 million to compensate people who may have been denied warranty coverage because of the indicators. Their maker, 3M, admitted that they could be tripped simply by humidity. Apple later adjusted its policies to require additional checks before blocking repairs, but the lawsuit continued.
Yosemite coming soon, contract confusion and more
With the release of the golden master candidate of Yosemite to developers, there has been renewed interest in the MacNN forums about when this next update will be out of beta and in the App store for everyone. Forum Regular "webraider" was attempting to purchase a contract free factory unlocked iPhone 6, but has run unto some problems and wonders if anyone has an answer.
Gap between plastic, metal components may 'expand slightly' with time
First purchasers of the Galaxy Note 4 are claiming that the devices have a gap between the plastic body of the phone, and the metal frame that surrounds the edge of the phone. According to reports, the gap is large enough to stick in a business card. Samsung has issued a statement about the gap, denying that it is a problem, or will affect functionality of the device in any way.
Upgrade to iCloud Drive not recommended until after Yosemite official release
A newly-discovered bug in the "Reset All Settings" control in iOS 8 can cause documents stored in the new iCloud Drive to be permanently deleted. The feature is not recommended to be upgraded to until OS X Yosemite has been officially released -- which is expected to happen sometime next month -- but some iOS 8 users who have upgraded prematurely will be at risk of losing files, such as iWork documents stored in the cloud, if they use the "Reset All Settings" troubleshooting feature.
Updates bash for OS X Lion, Mountain Lion and Mavericks
Although nearly all Mac users are unaffected by the issue Apple has made good on its word to quickly fix a serious security flaw in bash, a Unix shell that comes as part of OS X. Apple acknowledged the problem on Friday, and today released OS X bash update 1.0 for OS X Lion (10.7), Mountain Lion (10.8) and Mavericks (10.9). The flaw, known as "Shellshock," could potentially allow users who have set up advanced Unix services that interact with the web to be vulnerable to remote intrusion.
Thousands of dollars' worth of hardware damaged
A new video circulating on the Internet shows two kids -- identifying themselves as Kylie and Danny -- going into an Apple Store and trying to bend the iPhone 6 Plus. The pair succeed several times, causing the phones' metal frames to warp and pop out their displays. Thousands of dollars' worth of hardware is believed to have been damaged, but Kylie suggests that "it's Apple fault" for poor design.
May signify more intense update schedule
[Updated: iOS 8.1, Xcode 6.1 beta 3, Apple TV beta made available to developers] Apple is already testing iOS 8.1, 8.2, and even 8.3, sources say. The information has also reportedly been verified through website analytics, showing visits by devices with the firmware. Hits from v8.1 devices are said to have registered before 8.0 launched on September 17, but 8.2 and 8.3 traffic only began escalating post-launch.
Testing finds that larger iPhone 6 Plus actually less prone than iPhone 6
Adding to new suspicions that some of the "iPhone 6 Plus easily bends" videos appearing on the web may have been staged, Consumer Reports has now weighed in with the results of its own independent testing that largely refutes the claims that the phones can bend easily. After testing both models of new iPhone, as well as some other smartphones and phablets, the lab found that while the new iPhones were indeed less resilient than the iPhone 5 or Samsung's Galaxy Note 3, the HTC One (M8) is actually the most prone to deformation.
'Bendghazi' controversy not phasing sales, swift refutation by Apple credited
After falling four percent on Thursday, Apple's stock closed out the week by bouncing back and regaining more than half the drop as Wall Street reacted positively to the company's refutation of the "bending" controversy. Some new questions are being raised about the original video that started the kerfuffle, as careful observation reveals that the video was edited (and the reported noted in the video that his iPhone 6 was already slightly bent before demonstrating the flaw). Investment firms Stifel Nicolaus and BMO Capital Markets have both raised their target prices for AAPL.
iOS 8.0.2 update fixes some reported issues
Today in the MacNN forums, members are discussing the second update to iOS 8. Some report no problems as of yet, others are stating there are some things missing such as recent pics. One Junior Member was trying to figure out why it was that every time they used "Find My iPhone" on the iPhone 6, it erased all their music.
Cellular, Wi-Fi, Touch ID affected
Although iOS 8.0.2 appears to have solved the bulk of problems with v8.0.1, some people are still encountering issues with disabled cellular service and Touch ID. Many of the complaints appear to stem from Australia, but it's not clear whether the problems are actually regionally-based. Some users are also complaining about Wi-Fi going missing, but that was an issue touched off by v8.0 and tends to manifest occasionally in Apple firmware updates.
Apple testing policies may ultimately be responsible
A quality assurance manager responsible for this week's botched iOS 8.0.1 release was also in charge of QA for iOS 6 Maps, sources tell Bloomberg. The man is identified as Josh Williams, who is said to have been removed from the Maps team after the app gave people bad directions and/or mislabeled important scenery. He has however been with Apple since 2000, and has been handling quality issues for iOS since the early days of the iPhone.
Only those running advanced UNIX services should be concerned, fix is on the way
An Apple spokesperson has reassured Mac users that the "vast majority" of users are not at risk from a serious bug discovered in the UNIX shell Bash that some researchers have called "potentially bigger than the Heartbleed vulnerability." Apple says that only those who have configured "advanced UNIX services" using the Terminal in OS X could be a risk of the flaw -- which would mean that nearly all OS X users would be unaffected. Nevertheless, the company is said to be working on a fix.
Apple copes with two simultaneous crises
[Updated: iOS 8.0.2 is now available, and Apple issues apology] The promised fix for iOS 8.0.1 will come in the form of an v8.0.2 download "as soon as it's ready in the next few days," according to a new Apple support document. In the meantime, the webpage offers instructions on how to downgrade to iOS 8.0 using iTunes and direct download links for iPhone 6 and 6 Plus versions of the firmware. The Health app won't work in iOS 8 after these steps. It will be fixed in our upcoming iOS 8.0.2 software update," the company continues.
Schiller suggests owners with bent iPhones visit Apple Stores
Continuing to fight back against claims that the iPhone 6 Plus is structurally unsound and prone to bending in people's pockets, Apple has given some tech reporters a tour of the iPhone quality testing lab, showing that it does and did test the new iPhone to simulate situations like those seen in videos to aggravate or cause bending. The original instigator of the furor has noted that his iPhone 6 Plus was slightly bent right out of the box -- opening up the possibility that some batches, rather than the phone itself, could have structural issues.
Will use machinery previously applied to LG G Flex
Consumer Reports is in the process of testing the bending limits of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, according to an official post. To run the tests the publication is using a machine capable of up to 1,000 pounds of force, something it previously used to test the intentionally pliable LG G Flex. The new iPhones are supposed to remain rigid, but the 6 Plus, at least, is bending in some owners' pockets after having been in there for just a few hours, according to claims.
Suggests media attention overblown
Apple has issued a statement regarding the escalating "bendgate" controversy surrounding the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, according to CNBC reporter Jon Fortt. The company says that it has only received complaints from nine customers so far, and adds that the new iPhones "feature steel/titanium inserts to reinforce stress locations, and use the strongest glass in the industry." So far, it hasn't announced plans to deal with the complaints, even though an AppleCare representative has hinted that it may be possible to get warranty replacements.
Solves glitches with Photo Library, Reachability, more
(Updated with warnings about potential iPhone problems, a fix for those who updated, and news of withdrawal of the delta update) Just a week after having released iOS 8.0, Apple has begun seeding iOS 8.0.1 via iTunes and as an over-the-air update. The most prominent change is a solution to a HealthKit bug that led Apple to pull apps using the platform from the App Store. Those apps are now cleared to return.
Size, thinness of device may simply make it more prone
Having only shipped on Friday, the iPhone 6 Plus is already bending in the pockets of some owners, according to complaints in forums. Hours-long pressure from sitting or physical activity appears to be responsible. Affected phones should still function, but may look noticeably deformed and refuse to lay flat.
Palm Pilots? (un)predictive text? iOS 8 internet problems?
This week in the MacNN Forums, "subego" started a thread that appears to be showcasing some of the bizarre interpretations Apple's new predictive text in iOS 8 creates -- either that, or he is simply trying to live up to his "Clinically Insane" ranking by spewing incoherent gibberish. Today a Fresh-Faced Recruit who goes by the name "Swervage" has started a rather unusual thread, lashing out at Apple for not making Mavericks compatible with Palm Pilots, going as far as saying that this is "monumentally moronic" of Apple.
May also fix Wi-Fi, battery problems
As predicted, iOS 8.0.1 is now in the hands of carrier partners for testing, a source says. The person notes that the update fixes a variety of bugs left in the OS for its debut last week. For example, it copes with glitches in the Phone app, which can affect call forwarding, and cause freezes when accessing Visual Voicemail.
Solves problem preventing message writing
Apple has released an separate update of its Mail client for the public and developer betas of OS X Yosemite. The code "resolves an issue that may prevent composing a message," attached notes explain. Beta participants can download the update via the Mac App Store.
Now set at $299 for iPhone 6, $329 for iPhone 6 Plus
In a new note on its repairs webpage, Apple has raised prices on out-of-warranty repair costs for the new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. Apple has not, however, increased prices on its $99 AppleCare+ warranty, which adds a second year of coverage and allows two "accidental damage" repairs with a set $79 service fee for each incident. The new OOW repair pricing, at up to $299 and $329 for the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus respectively, is between $30 and $60 higher than the iPhone 5 family price.
new iPhone and iOS 8 first impressions
As the long lines outside of Apple stores world-wide finally start to move, and new iPhones start landing in the hands of Mac fans everywhere, MacNN forum-goers with phones in-hand begin to post their first impressions in the thread titled "Incoming iPhone" which was started late last week. Also today, reports are starting to come in that iOS 8 is a bit sluggish and buggy, with some even stating that it's the worst release yet. Of course, people always say that.
Follows a day after 7.0.6
Despite v7.0.6 being released just yesterday alongside OS X 10.9.5, Apple has released another version of Safari for Mavericks, 7.1. The release mainly follows in the steps of its iOS 8 sibling, introducing secure search site DuckDuckGo as an alternative to the likes of Google or Yahoo. Security for Yahoo searches has been improved, as entries into the search field are now encrypted.