In these days of big iPhones, smaller-handed individuals have trouble typing up a storm on their iOS devices. However, since iOS 8 (at least), Apple has toyed with an edge-swipe activated one-hand keyboard. To keep characters closer to your thumb, it squishes character keys and expands copy and paste buttons, keeping the word prediction rail above the keys. Alas, it still remains unfinished and inaccessible, hidden away in the iPhone’s Xcode.
Developer Steve Troughton-Smith spotted the code inside Apple’s iOS simulator, noting that the code for it has likely existed for several years, even if it hasn’t surfaced in iPhones yet. Big Android phone makers like Samsung and LG have offered truncated and even floating keyboard windows after the companies moved into smartphones larger than four inches. Android’s native keyboard also has a one-handed option if you need it.
Troughton-Smith even released the code chunk for jail-breakers to make a reality… if you jailbreak your iPhone. And here it is in action, albeit steered with a mouse:
Video or it didn’t happen: (very hard to engage in the Simulator with a mouse cursor) pic.twitter.com/vw2wpCgiLJ
— Steve T-S (@stroughtonsmith) October 19, 2016
Via: Apple Insider
Source: Twitter (@stroughtonsmith)
If you have insurance on your phone and smash the ever-loving tar out of the screen, you normally have to file a claim, pay a deductible and wait for a replacement device. Bleh. AT&T and its insurance provider Asurion, however, are trying something a little different. As of November 15, people paying to insure their phones can shell out $89 to — schedule permitting — have a technician repair that display that very day.
Same-day repairs definitely aren’t guaranteed, but the plan could work well for people who can’t go without their phones or don’t have the time for the traditional trade-in process. You stand to save a little money, too: the usual deductible for a high-end smartphone fluctuates between $150 and $225 depending on what it is, so just under $90 doesn’t sound like a bad deal for potentially speedy service.
There are a couple caveats you should know about, though — for one, the new plan only applies to certain smartphones. If you have an iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 6s, 6s Plus or SE, you’re in luck. Ditto if you own Samsung’s Galaxy Note 4, Galaxy S5 or Galaxy S6. You might notice some very popular omissions from that list, namely the most recent iPhone and Galaxy S devices, but that’s probably because the requisite parts are more pricey or tougher to come by. Beyond that, the screen replacement plan is only set to launch in 14 markets come November 15; you can check out the full list (plus markets launching down the road) below.
The iPhone 7’s non-moving home button may feel odd at first, but it has its perks… especially if it ever stops working. MacRumors forum goer iwayne has shown that the new iPhone will give you an on-screen home button (along with a warning that you may need repairs) if it thinks the physical key is broken. While that’s not much consolation if your phone needs to be fixed, it does mean that you can keep using your device in a relatively normal way while you’re waiting for your Genius Bar appointment.
The technology may be short-lived when there are reports of Apple possibly ditching physical home buttons entirely with the next iPhone. However, it’s not hard to see why Apple would push for a motionless button in the short term. It’s not just the customizable haptic feedback — the new design is theoretically less likely to break (since it doesn’t click down) and reduces the pressure to get an immediate fix. That helps Apple’s bottom line, of course, but it may also make you a happier owner in the long term.
Image credit: iwayne, MacRumors Forums
Source: MacRumors Forums
Now that there are new iPhones with revised cameras, many smartphone photographers are going to want new Olloclip lenses. Thankfully, they’ve arrived… and Olloclip didn’t just tweak the connectors and call it a day. Its new Core, Active and Macro Pro lens sets not only have improved optics (“premium multi-element coated glass,” Olloclip says), but an improved interchangeable lens system. Called Connect, it separates the frame on your phone from the lens housings. This lets them quickly attach to and align with your iPhone’s camera, even if you have a screen protector. You should spend less time swapping lenses and more time shooting, in other words.
The lenses themselves aren’t a revolution, but they’ll cover most of your photographic needs. The $100 Core Lens kit includes fisheye, 120-degree wide-angle and 15X macro lenses that prioritize flexibility above all else. You can get it with a protective case for $120. The $80 Macro Pro set includes 7X, 15X and 21X lenses for extreme close-ups, while the $120 Active Lens bundle includes both a 2X telephoto lens and a 155-degree ultra-wide lens to capture those outdoor adventures.
You can pre-order all of the lens kits today ahead of the planned early November launch. You may want to choose your lenses carefully if you have an iPhone 7 Plus, however. There’s no mention of taking advantage of the Plus’ longer-range secondary camera — you’re not going to combine that extra zoom with Olloclip’s other optical tricks.
Source: Olloclip (PR Newswire)
Government ministers in the United Kingdom have been banned from wearing the Apple Watch to cabinet meetings over fears the device could be hacked, according to The Telegraph.
Several cabinet ministers reportedly wore the device to meetings while serving under former Prime Minister David Cameron, however new PM Theresa May has apparently banned the smartwatches over fears that they could be used by Russian spies as listening devices. One source told The Telegraph: “The Russians are trying to hack everything.”
The Verge notes that the Apple Watch has been banned from Australian cabinet meetings as well. An advisor for the Australian PM Malcolm Turnbull said that more attention needed to be paid to communications security as an increasing number of devices, from glasses to running shoes, offered internet connectivity.
The bans follow serious concerns over the potential reach of clandestine state-sponsored hacker groups, after U.S. officials pointed the finger at Russian hackers following the release of confidential emails from the Democratic National Congress during the U.S. election.
Russian hackers have also been implicated in the release of private medical files of some of the world’s most famous athletes. Smartphones have also been barred from the Cabinet because of similar worries that the devices could be used to listen in on meetings.
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BioWare is virtually synonymous with Mass Effect and Dragon Age these days, but it has had its share of experiments. Remember Jade Empire, its China-inspired (and critically well-received) action role-playing title? Aspyr does — it just released versions of Jade Empire: Special Edition for the Mac and, crucially, iOS. You can now relive the story of a martial artist restoring balance to the world using your phone or tablet, not just your computer at home. There are simple controls in the iOS version if you’re not comfortable with a touchscreen, but you can also switch to an expert mode when you’re comfortable with using taps and swipes to defeat other warriors.
Both versions are available now for $10, which isn’t too shabby for a game that combines fast-paced fighting with signature BioWare elements like moral dilemmas. You’ll want to make sure you have plenty of free space, though. The iOS release chews up just short of 4GB, so you probably won’t be playing on a 16GB device unless Jade Empire is going to dominate your mobile life for the next while.
Source: App Store, Mac App Store, Aspyr
Three additional law firms have joined a class action lawsuit against Apple over an alleged defect that causes iPhone 6 Plus touchscreens to become unresponsive and fail.
Back in August, reports began appearing from iPhone 6 owners describing an apparently latent manufacturing issue that causes a flickering bar to appear at the top of the screen and the display to become unresponsive or less responsive to touch.
A week later, three iPhone 6 owners filed a complaint with the U.S. District Court of Northern California after their devices presented symptoms of the problem – dubbed “touch disease” by repair website iFixit – which Apple has yet to publicly acknowledge.
Yesterday, Motherboard reported that lawyers who filed the class action complaint earlier this fall have now signed on three additional law firms to support their case, while an additional class action lawsuit related to the issue has been filed against Apple in Utah.
Richard McCune, an attorney in the California case, said he has been contacted by 10,000 people asking to join the suit, which accuses Apple of violating the state’s consumer fraud statutes, negligent misrepresentation, breach of implied warranty, unjust enrichment, and other consumer act violations.
The “touch disease” flaw is thought to be caused by the touchscreen controller chips soldered to the iPhone’s logic board losing contact after a period of normal usage, because of Apple’s failure to incorporate a metal shield. So far, Apple has refused to repair the out-of-warranty iPhones without charge when the defect manifests. Worse, replacement refurbished handsets costing owners $329 have reportedly shown symptoms of the same problem within days or weeks of being issued.
Motherboard claims five separate current and former Apple Geniuses have confirmed that Apple is aware of the problem but will not tell customers about it.
However, Apple’s filed response to the most recent Utah complaint appears at least to signal a legal acknowledgement of the issue and the company’s lawyers have requested an “extension of time to respond to the Complaint” and asked that the Utah and California cases be combined into one.
Given the similarity between the [Utah] and [California] actions, it would unnecessarily tax judicial resources if these actions were to proceed in separate class action lawsuits—especially where the [Utah] and [California] Plaintiffs purport to represent the same putative class of all consumers who purchased an iPhone 6 or 6 Plus.
On Friday, McCune filed an updated lawsuit against Apple that includes several new plaintiffs and formally adds the three separate law firms to the legal battle. “Each of the firms (who had their own clients) brings strength to the case, including Stephen Larson of Larson O’Brien, who is a former Federal Judge,” McCune told Motherboard. “With these firms working with us, we believe it gives us the best chance of obtaining a positive result in the case for the owners of the phones.”
Related Roundup: iPhone 6s
Buyer’s Guide: iPhone (Buy Now)
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An increasing number of iPhone users are experiencing an Activation Lock issue in which the device is linked to an Apple ID email address that does not belong to them, according to crowdsourced information from MacRumors and Twitter.
MacRumors reader Balders, who recently purchased an iPhone 7 Plus, explained in our discussion forums:
Just received my brand new 256GB Jet Black iPhone 7 Plus. Looks immaculate, screen is perfect, machining all fine… Only problem is, it appears someone has already used it as the iPhone is asking for the account used to activate it — o…..@icloud.com. Apple say it needs replacing […] Now got to wait for an expedited replacement iPhone once I’ve returned this one.
With the wrong Apple ID being displayed, users cannot sign in and are therefore unable to proceed with setting up the iPhone. The issue has primarily affected new iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus models upon being turned on for the first time, and iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus models upon being restored to default settings, although older models appear to be affected to a lesser extent.
MacRumors user TheKricket said his iPhone 6s suddenly became activation locked:
I purchased an iPhone 6s full-price and outright directly from an Apple Store in September 2015. The phone was unlocked (I switched from T-Mobile to Verizon after I purchased it without issue). I recently purchased an iPhone 7 Plus and after that phone was activated on Verizon’s network, the iPhone 6s now indicates that it has an “Activation Lock.” It is also linked to some unknown iCloud account (not the account I activated it with or have been using it with for close to a full year).
The discussion topics above and others have received multiple replies from other MacRumors readers experiencing the same issue, while several Twitter users have also shared similar complaints. It is unclear when the Apple ID mixups first began, but user reports have gained traction since at least September.
Got my brand new iPhone 7 Plus… with an activation lock on it… WTF? Anybody else with the same problem?
— Manuel Aeberli (@the_street_ch) September 30, 2016
Got new iPhone, did reset of old one. Now old iPhone has activation lock with email I don’t own. Not just me: https://t.co/wKlS3wuIhT
— Mark Svendsen (@marksvend) September 17, 2016
Something weird is going on. Possible @apple security issue with iOS 10 & wiping an old iPhone, reboots to Activation Lock & unknown email
— Rick Daino (@Metagamers) September 22, 2016
A number of affected users said Apple was able to remove the Activation Lock on their iPhones upon providing the company with proof of purchase. This process can seemingly be completed at an Apple retail store by scheduling a Genius Bar appointment, or remotely by calling Apple’s support team at 1-800-MY-APPLE.
On rarer occasions, however, the Activation Lock screen linked to a wrong Apple ID email address reappears more than once. In these cases, some users report that Apple fully replaced their iPhones.
It remains unclear what is causing the Activation Lock issues. Apple has not publicly commented on the matter.
Related Roundups: iPhone 6s, iPhone 7
Tags: Activation Lock, Apple ID
Buyer’s Guide: iPhone (Buy Now)
Discuss this article in our forums
We’ve seen many attempts at helping you switch from one smartphone platform to another, but Google is kicking things up a notch with its Pixel smartphones. The lineup will include software to bring over contacts, media and messages from other phones, including iPhones. It’ll even bring over your iMessages, in case you’re worried that all those blue chat bubbles will disappear while moving to Android. To that end, Google bundles an adapter to help iPhone owners make the leap. These tools aren’t that necessary if you store a lot of your data in the cloud, but it’s evident that Google wants to remove as many pain points as possible — it wants Pixel to appeal to everyone.
Click here to catch all the latest news from Google’s fall event.
When you’re browsing your Facebook feed (or Flipboard, or Reddit), you probably spend at least some time reading, sharing and commenting on the latest news. What if there was an app dedicated just to that? Yahoo is giving it a shot. It’s relaunching its core mobile app as Yahoo Newsroom, which focuses on following news “Vibes” like politics or sports, sharing stories in those threads (from anywhere on the web) and commenting on them. The more Vibes you follow and the more you interact, the more personalized your feed becomes.
Newsroom should be available today for Android and iOS alike. And in case you’re wondering: yes, Yahoo believes its app has an advantage over Facebook and other social networks. You can say what you like “free from social pressure,” Yahoo says. That is an advantage if you’re worried about judgmental (or simply uninterested) friends, although there is a concern that you may end up in an echo chamber where you only discuss a narrow range of subjects with like-minded contributors. Still, this beats rival custom news apps where you’re rarely more than a passive reader.
Source: Yahoo (Tumblr)