Taking a look back at another week of news and headlines from Cupertino, this week's Apple Loop includes September launch event, Apple confirming iPhone line-up, new iPhone 13 features leak, MacBook Pro release dates, scary lightning cable hack, AirPods 3 details, impact of App Store changes, and how the Nintendo Switch might look a bit like an iPhone.
Apple Loop is here to remind you of a few of the very many discussions that have happened around Apple over the last seven days ( and you can read my weekly digest of Android news here on Forbes ).
The 'Surprise' September Event Is Announced
Apple has announced the expected event for mid-September . Titled ' California Streaming', it is set to take place on Tuesday 14th September. The usual Kremlinology is taking place on the short promotional clip, with the font on the date,, the floating Apple icon, the push through to a presumably virtual world, and the simple fact that it is a regular Apple event all getting discussed:
"Some people love to carefully examine Apple event invites as though each one serves as a crystal ball that can show the future. The one that went out Tuesday might have been crafted to suggest that the iPhone 13 will be better at taking pictures of stars. Or maybe it hints that Apple's virtual-reality headset will be unveiled. On the other hand, it could be nothing more than a pretty picture.”
( Cult of Mac ).
Apple Docs Confirm iPhone Line-Up
Pretty much everyone is ready for Apple to announce four iPhones; in fact a bigger surprise would be if Tim Cook left the stage without revealing the new iOS smartphones. In any case, the latest confirmation comes in the regulatory filings for the MagSafe charger with the FCC:
“Apple gave the game away in a new FCC filing for its MagSafe charger. The filing lists four new iPhone models and even goes so far as to describe all iPhone 12 models as "legacy" devices… These are the iPhone 13, iPhone 13 Pro, iPhone 13 Pro Max and iPhone 13 Mini (despite relatively low sales of its predecessor) and they are expected to carry the model numbers A2628, A2634, A2640 and A2645 respectively. ”
( Forbes ).
iPhone 13's Missing Option
With less than a week to go, the final details of the iPhone 13 family are clicking into place, including the SKU details of the four handset flavors thanks to a leak from an online retailer. Curiously though, the longed for 1TB iPhone 13 Pro Max is not present; the assumption being that the worldwide chip shortage may have made this too much of a stretch on Apple's inventory.
“According to the listings on a Ukrainian website, the iPhone 13 mini will come in six colour options – Black, Blue, Purple, Pink, White, and PRODUCT (Red). The mini will be available in 64GB and 128GB storage versions.
“The iPhone 13 will come in the same six colour options like the mini, while storage options are 128GB and 256GB. The iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max will be available in Black, Silver, Gold, and Bronze colour options, according to the website. While the Pro model will be offered in 128GB and 256GB storage versions, the Pro Max will come in 256GB and 512GB storage variants.”
( 91mobiles ).
MacBook Pro On Course
The other major launch many are waiting for is the MacBookPro. This is expected to be a separate event, leaving the iPhone room to shine, with late October/early November looking likely for the retail release according to the latest details from the supply chain, specifically around the deliveries of the new miniLED screen:
"…citing "industry sources," that the suppliers of mini-LED chips and other related parts have expressed confidence their shipments are on track with the MacBook Pro production and launch later this year. Tech fans might have to wait for a few more weeks for the 2021 MacBook Pro announcement. DigiTimes' sources claimed the new laptops would be announced in October or November.”
( Econotimes ).
Lightning Cable Security Warning
A new warning this week to be very careful of any lightning cables you are loaned. From the research by 'MG' comes an updated lightning to USB-C cable that will act as a keylogger, sending your Mac's keypresses over Wifi to a nearby hacker:
“The OMG Cables, as they’re called, work by creating a Wi-Fi hotspot itself that a hacker can connect to from their own device. From here, an interface in an ordinary web browser lets the hacker start recording keystrokes. The malicious implant itself takes up around half the length of the plastic shell, MG said… He said that the Type C cables allow the same sort of attacks to be carried out against smartphones and tablets.”
( Vice ).
A New Case For The New AirPods
Noted Apple tipster Max Weinbach has brough us details of the AirPods 3 – which should be launched next week alongside the iPhone 13 family. We can expect to see a number of changes to the case, including wireless charging as standard, and a larger battery for extended listening.
“How much extra battery life that actually translates to isn’t clear, but any improvements in this area would be very welcome. Saying that, we’ll be disappointed if the earbuds themselves aren’t given a longer battery life. Right now, you’ll get five hours of playtime on a single charge, which is pretty low compared to rivals like the Sony WF-1000XM4 and the Cambridge Audio Melomania 1 Plus.”
( TechRadar ).
App Store Impact
Apple has been making a number of changes to its App Store policies, with the most recent addressing concerns raised in an anti-trust case in Japan. Morgan Stanley has been looking at the impact of the changes and they are not expected to have any serious impact.
“Assuming a worst case scenario in which Apple stopped collecting economics from all of the top 20 reader apps translates to downside risk of 4% of Services revenue, 1% of total company revenue, and about 2% of FY22 EPS forecast (3). In other words, we believe the recent App Store headlines are more attention grabbing than the ultimate financial impact to Apple's revenue or profitability.”
( via PED30 ).
Eagle eyed Ninetndo watchers have been looking at the new UI for Nintendo's Switch gaming console, and wondering how it could be improved… there are a lot of opinions but one that is picking up acclaim in the community is Porcorousseauu's UI concept, which looks rather familiar:
"…appears to draw at least some inspiration from the UI on Apple’s mobile and tablet operating system, iOS. As you can see there are transparent menus, curved edges, colourful backgrounds and folders, too. There’s even a makeover of the Switch eShop. While this obviously isn’t the first time we’ve seen Switch redesign, it’s certainly a unique take compared to a lot of previous mock-ups.”
( Nintendo Life ).
Apple Loop brings you seven days worth of highlights every weekend here on Forbes. Don't forget to follow me so you don't miss any coverage in the future. Last week's Apple Loop can be read here , or this week's edition of Loop's sister column, Android Circuit, is also available on Forbes .
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