Andy To’s gorgeous 4K iPhone 13 Pro video shot in Mexico City:

This is some breathtaking footage. Make sure you watch in full screen, at the highest resolution your setup will support.

The Old Last-Minute Hardware Design Switcheroo:

My suspicion is that, given how much Apple has been trying to flush-out leaks, that these were designs with A/B access internally to see which things made it to the press…

Killian Bell, writing at Cult of Mac:

Apple Watch Series 7 is not the upgrade most of us expected to see
from Tuesday’s Apple event. The new model doesn’t sport the big
design refresh multiple sources said was coming. It doesn’t even
pack a new chip.

Is this the upgrade Apple wanted to deliver this year? Or is it
a last-minute substitution that Cupertino had to settle on
because the refresh it really wanted to deliver just wasn’t
ready to roll out?

Based on the evidence, we’re going to say it’s the latter.

The only way this could be funnier is if Bell included the theory that perhaps Apple changed the hardware at the last minute because the flat-edge designs leaked.

This is not how hardware works. These designs are set long in advance. In fact, from what I’ve heard, the flat-edge watch designs might be legitimate leaks, but they’re next year’s designs. That’s how far in advance Apple works on hardware — they were already in the advanced stages of designing the 2022 Apple Watches months ago. (Aesthetically, I am not sold on a flat-edge design for the watch. The round edges are iconic and organic.)

You can argue that Series 7 is a marginal upgrade over Series 6, but with an all-new screen (brighter and bigger), all-new crystal (more durable), and 33 percent faster charging, there are upgrades, and none of them could be slapped together.

CODA – Apple TV+ Press

August 19, 2021

CODA – Apple TV+ Press:

Seventeen-year-old Ruby (Emilia Jones) is the sole hearing member of a deaf family – a CODA, child of deaf adults.

This is on my to-watch shortlist… But everything I hear about it is amazing.

Apple TV+ has been punching way above its weight on delivering great content.

Netflix Rolling Out Spatial Audio Support – MacRumors:

Netflix is rolling out support for Spatial Audio on the iPhone and the iPad, based on reports shared by MacRumors readers and on Reddit. A Netflix spokesperson also confirmed to MacRumors that the rollout is underway.

More of this please…

Have an iPhone? Here’s why you shouldn’t close apps | Boing Boing:

People have told me I should shut down apps on my phone to conserve the battery charge and improve performance. But this video says the phone’s operating system is designed to manage open apps to optimize memory, performance, and battery charge and that I should let it do its thing. The only time to close an app, according to this video, is when the app is frozen or is not running properly.

The embedded Youtube video link

elementary OS 6 Odin Available Now ⋅ elementary Blog:

How do you get a bold, friendly new Linux UI? By shamelessly copying it from macOS apparently. Still, depending how faithfully they copied, it might actually make for a usable Linux distro.

What’s the Point of Apple TV Hardware?:

With Apple TV+ available on everything now, anyone can enjoy the content, yes… But every other streaming box kinda sucks in other ways, and the Apple TV box still is the best experience I’ve had with a set-top device. Others capture your data, throw ads at you, have horrible interfaces… Whereas Apple TV really just gets out of your way.

Speaking of Mark Gurman, his Power On newsletter continues to be an excellent read. His main topic this week argues that Apple TV (hardware) is “mostly pointless”:

Most importantly, buying an Apple TV no longer gives users a
content advantage. We are in the age of streaming services like
Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and Hulu, and business models have
shifted so that every service is available on every device — phones, tablets, TV sets, streaming sticks and game consoles.

Apple, known for its closed ecosystem, is even embracing the shift
by offering many services on smart TVs and boxes made by
competitors. […] That made the Apple TV a mostly pointless
accessory, and consumers seem to agree: 2020 data from Strategy
found that the Apple TV holds 2% of the streaming
device market.

The product isn’t without its benefits, though, for the Apple
ecosystem’s most loyal users. Integration with HomeKit, Fitness+,
AirPods and the iOS remote app is useful. The new remote control
and faster chip in this year’s version are definite improvements,
and the box is getting SharePlay and Spatial Audio support later
this year. Still, I don’t see these enhancements moving the needle
for most people.

I’d argue that Apple TV is a quintessential Apple product: its primary point is to deliver a superior user experience for those who care and are willing to pay a premium for it. If you look only at “content” there’s little reason to buy an iPhone or Mac or iPad, either. The Mac in particular seems an apt comparison. The reason to buy a Mac instead of a PC isn’t that the Mac can do things PCs can’t, but that what you do on a Mac is delivered through a superior experience. That’s Apple TV, too — especially now that Apple is shipping a good remote control. For a lot of us, it clearly delivers a superior and more private user experience that is worth paying a premium for.

2 percent market share is really low, no question about it, but if you look at those market share numbers from Strategy Analytics, no TV platform has a dominant position. It’s a remarkably diverse market, with no platform over 12 percent share. And Apple’s market share isn’t just any random 2 percent of the market, it’s 2 percent at the very high end of the market. It’s a premium product for Apple’s core customer base.

Daring Fireball: Apple’s New ‘Child Safety’ Initiatives, and the Slippery Slope:

All of these features are fairly grouped together under a “child safety” umbrella, but I can’t help but wonder if it was a mistake to announce them together. Many people are clearly conflating them, including those reporting on the initiative for the news media. E.g. The Washington Post’s “never met an Apple story that couldn’t be painted in the worst possible light” Reed Albergotti’s report, the first three paragraphs of which are simply wrong1 and the headline for which is grossing misleading (“Apple Is Prying Into iPhones to Find Sexual Predators, but Privacy Activists Worry Governments Could Weaponize the Feature”).

Not surprisingly, this is the first really good, non-hyperbolic summary of everything Apple announced they’re doing on the topic.

  • On-device, in the Messages app, neural analysis of images for possible sensitive content sent or recieved… If the user is under 12, parents can opt-in to recieve a warning, over 12 the user can be notified but parents won’t be… And none of this is ever reported to any kind of authories, nor is any content sent to Apple or anyone else.
  • Likewise on-device updates to Siri and Search around sensitive content, with the same kind of parental opt-in notifications for under 12 users, or just the users otherwise, similar to above.

  • Most misunderstood… CSAM image fingerprint comparisons. Not sending images, not even scanning content of images, but creating a verifiable hash of images which can be compared with fingerprints in the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) systems… And if enough of those match the MCMEC system triggering a human review of those fingerprints for confirmation, before finally potentially raising further alarms. These cryptographic hashes, depending on the algorythm, should be entirely unique to any given image and so should be worse than lottery odds of ever creating a single false positive that a photo in your library matches a sensitive image in the NCMEC database, much less enough to trigger further action.

These seem to be exteremely well thought out, best compromise answers to really difficult problems and by far the most pprivacy forward answers of anyone in the tech world so far.

IPPAWARDS | iPhone Photography Awards:

Why You Shouldn’t Use Google Maps On Your iPhone After Update:

Clearly, the issue here is that all the data Google Maps says it may collect is linked back to your personal identity. This is how Google works. Everything links together to build your profile, your timeline. And while you can fish around in Google’s account settings to delete some of this data, most don’t bother and why should you need to?