Recent Articles By Charlotte Henry [RSS]

Speculation on When Apple's Popular 5th Avenue Store Will Reopen

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5th Ave Apple Store glass cube being removed temporarily during construction

Apple’s flagship 5th Avenue store in New York closed nearly two years ago. There is no confirmed date for when it will reopen. 9to5Mac looked through various public statements to try and work out how long it may be until the famous cube reopens its doors.

The glass cube did return this past spring, but as October and November passed without an announcement, it became clear that the project had likely fallen behind schedule. At this point, it’s essentially impossible for Apple to reopen the store before the end of the year. Construction delays are not unprecedented, but for eager Apple fans, the reason for the delay is likely much less interesting than the actual reopening date. As of December 14th, New York City residents passing by the construction site report that much work remains to be done on the plaza surrounding the store. The cube’s Apple logo has not yet been reinstalled and Apple’s temporary store is still in service.

UK Regulator Ofcom to Tackle 'Patchy' Rural Cellular Coverage

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LONDON – UK telecoms regulator Ofcom announced on Tuesday that it will auction two new spectrum bands towards the end of 2019 or in early 2020. It vowed to tackle the “patchy” cellular reception suffered by those living in rural areas of Britain. The Telegraph reported that that the winners of the spectrum auction will have to improve cellular coverage for 140,000 homes and offices.

The communication regulator’s Connected Nations report found that only 66pc of the UK has complete 4G coverage from four operators, up from 49pc last year. While 83pc of urban homes and offices have complete 4G coverage, the figure for rural premises is less than half that (41pc). In some remote parts of the country, there is no coverage at all. To tackle this, Ofcom announced on Tuesday that it will auction two spectrum bands in later 2019 or early 2020.

Cybersecurity for U.S. Ballistic Missile Systems is Worryingly Bad

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Cyber security graphic.

The U.S. Department of Defense Inspector General (DOD IG) released a rather terrifying report on Friday. It outlined some major cybersecurity flaws in U.S. ballistic missile systems. An article from ZDNet explained that the DOD IG found “no data encryption, no antivirus programs, no multifactor authentication mechanisms, and 28-year-old unpatched vulnerabilities,” amongst other issues.

DOD IG inspectors found that IT administrators at three of the five locations they visited had failed to apply security patches, leaving computers and adjacent network systems vulnerable to remote or local attacks. Investigators found that systems were not patched for vulnerabilities discovered and fixed in 2016, 2013, and even going as far as back as 1990. The DOD IG report is heavily redacted in this particular section, suggesting that MDA administrators are still patching these flaws.

Customers Being Charged for Previously Free iPhone 7 Mic Fix

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In May, Apple recognized that some iPhone 7 and 7 Plus devices running iOS 11.3 or later had a problem with their microphones. For a time, Apple Stores and Apple Authorized Service Providers would fix the problem for free. However, since July, MacRumors has been contacted by a number of people complaining that they are now being charged for the repair. The repair costs $300 on out-of-warranty devices.

The exemptions abruptly ended in July of 2018, though, when Apple deleted its internal document related to the microphone issue and prevented free repairs from being processed through its service portal. Since then, many Apple retail and support employees have refused to acknowledge the policy ever existed. MacRumors has received several emails from affected customers since we published our article in July, but there has been little we can do to help. Apple did not respond to our original request for comment, so we’ve followed up today.

 

Apple Considered Having Both Face ID and Touch ID on iPhones

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Apple pondered having both Face ID and Touch ID on the same iPhone, a European patent reported by AppleInsider revealed. Having multiple forms of biometric authentication is not considered particularly efficient for either the user or the device. Ultimately, Apple decided against having both touch and facial recognition on the same iPhone model. Face ID was introduced in 2017 with the iPhone X, and Touch ID was not available on the device.

Text buried in the filing mentions the use of an “alternative form of authentication than that associated with the biometric feature.” In effect, this means if one biometric authentication check fails, such as Face ID, an alternative like Touch ID could still be used to log in, instead of using the passcode. The passage suggests that Apple at least thought about including both Face ID and Touch ID mechanisms on the iPhone or iPad before deciding against the prospect.

Why Apple Computers are no Longer Built in the U.S.

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Steve Jobs was fascinated by the automobile manufacturing process masterminded by Henry Ford in Detroit. He was similarly taken with the Japan-based system implemented by Sony. Jobs tried to build a similarly successful domestic manufacturing system at both Apple and Next, but it turned into one of his rare failures. On Saturday, the New York Times explained what went wrong.

So, the story of Silicon Valley’s success turned out to be the ability of a company like Apple to devise manufacturing supply chains that stretch all the way around the globe, taking advantage of both low-cost labor and lax environmental regulations. “We don’t have a manufacturing culture,” [former Apple executive Jean-Louis] Gassée said of the nation’s high-technology heartland, “meaning the substrate, the schooling, the apprentices, the subcontractors.” It took Mr. Jobs a bit longer to grasp that idea, however.

HQ Triva CEO Colin Kroll Found Dead

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Colin Kroll, the co-founder and CEO of HQ Trivia and Vine was found dead on Sunday, aged 34. He founded the daily quiz app with Rus Yusupov. Kroll also founded the video app Vine, which Twitter bought in 2012. He was found dead in his home in New York by police.

Police discovered Kroll in his apartment in New York City early Sunday morning. Kroll, 34, had recently been named the CEO of HQ Trivia, a company he co-founded alongside Rus Yusupov that runs a daily live trivia show with cash prizes. The duo also created the once-popular video app Vine, which Twitter acquired in 2012.

Mujjo Folio Sleeve for the New 13″ MacBook Air and Pro

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Mujjo released a very smart leather-folio case for the new 13″ MacBook Air and MacBook Pro on Wednesday. It has a single-leather panel on the outside and zips that go around three sides to make accessing the interior easier. The inside is felt-lined and contains a variety of compartments, including some for bank cards. The case is treated to be water-repellant. The Mujjo folio sleeve comes in black and is available online for €119.90 ($134.38) with free worldwide shipping.

Mujjo Folio Sleeve for the New 13″ MacBook Air and Pro

Tony Hawk's Skate Jam for iOS is Here

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My fellow children of the 90s…prepare to get nostalgic – Tony Hawk’s Skate Jams has arrived on iOS! This modern take on the skateboarding game is available to download from the app store now. It can be played on both iPhone and iPad and has all the old Tony Hawks elements you know and love from playing his games on PlayStation or even Game Boy. This includes the classic career mode alongside new Skate Jams Tournaments. You can skate as the man himself, and take on street, vert, and park courses. Players who pull of particularly impressive moves can record them in the game and share them online using #SkateJam. Tony Hawk’s Skate Jam is available as a free download with in-app purchases. It’s available for Android, too.

Russian Robot Exposed as a Fake

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A Russian state-owned TV news channel proudly showed off a “state-of-the-art” robot at a technology forum for children this week.  Boris appeared to walk, talk, and dance. Except, as the Telegraph explained, everything was not quite as it seemed. Boris was, in fact, a man in a very expensive costume…

‘Boris’ the Robot was apparently able to walk, talk and dance – and was passed off as state-of-the-art robotics by the TV channel at a technology forum for school pupils. But its authenticity started being questioned when photos appeared online that clearly showed a human inside a robot suit.