Apple joins Google, other tech companies in resisting ‘troubling’ FBI search warrant

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Date: Wednesday, March 15th, 2017, 05:32
Category: Amazon, Apple, Google, iOS, Legal, Microsoft, News, security

Apple has joined Amazon and Microsoft in a court filing which supports Google’s decision to resist an FBI warrant demanding that it hand over emails stored outside the USA. The tech companies argue that this would set a ‘troubling’ precedent.

As reported, the FBI served search warrants ordering Google to surrender emails belonging to suspects in a criminal investigation. The emails themselves were stored on a server outside the USA. Google, in turn, refused, arguing that a domestic search warrant could not apply to data stored in a foreign country.

A Pennsylvania court both disagreed and instructed Google to comply with the warrant. Google has since appealed the ruling, with Apple, Amazon and Microsoft jointly filing an amicus brief in support of Google.

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WikiLeaks releases 8,700+ CIA-related documents, show agency efforts towards hacking Android systems, iPhones, operating systems and smart TVs

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Date: Wednesday, March 8th, 2017, 05:43
Category: Android, Google, Hack, Hardware, iOS, iPhone, macOS, News, privacy, Samsung, security

This is pretty much one for the ages.

WikiLeaks has released more than 8,700 documents that have apparently originated from the CIA’s Center for Cyber Intelligence, with some of the leaks saying the agency had 24 “weaponized” and previously undisclosed exploits for the Android operating system as of 2016.

Some of the Android-specific exploits were developed by the CIA, while others hailed from the U.S. National Security Agency, U.K. intelligence agency GCHQ, and cyber arms dealers.

Among the smartphone-related tools developed by the CIA were assets that allow the agency to bypass encryption found in WhatsApp, Confide and other applications known to use encryption. These tools, according to WikiLeaks analysis, capture audio and message traffic before encryption has a chance to be applied.

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Tim Cook speaks out against fake news, cites tech companies’ responsibility towards the issue

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Date: Tuesday, February 14th, 2017, 05:53
Category: Google, Microsoft, News

It’s not easy operating in a world where “fake news” has become a term.

Apple CEO Tim Cook, in between tours of schools and meetings with developers in a trip to Britain, commented about the scourge of fake news in comments to The Telegraph.

Cook, who pointed to false stories that spread like wildfire across the internet as a “big problem in a lot of the world,” stated that tech companies have a responsibility to intervene,

“It has to be ingrained in the schools, it has to be ingrained in the public,” Cook said. “There has to be a massive campaign. We have to think through every demographic. We need the modern version of a public-service announcement campaign. It can be done quickly if there is a will.”

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Apple joins coalition of 97 companies filing amicus brief against Trump immigration ban

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Date: Tuesday, February 7th, 2017, 05:41
Category: Google, Legal, Microsoft, News

When 97 companies come pounding on your door, it may be time to listen.

Apple, along with 96 other companies, including Silicon Valley powerhouses such as Google and Facebook, filed an amicus brief late on Sunday to oppose the immigration order introduced by US President Donald Trump. An amicus brief is a legal filing that allows parties not directly involved in a lawsuit to offer their opinions to the court.

The brief says an open-ended ban does not aid America’s national security and instead undermines its interests. It notes that 200 of the companies in the Fortune 500 list were founded by immigrants or their children.

Other backers include Alphabet (via Google), Microsoft, Netflix, Twitter and Uber. Amazon is not listed but this is because Jeff Bezos, Amazon CEO, is already backing the original lawsuit. The amicus brief legally supports the cases filed in Washington and Minnesota.

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Apple, other tech firms pen open letter to Trump administration voicing opposition to immigration ban

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Date: Friday, February 3rd, 2017, 05:25
Category: Apple, Google, News

On Wednesday night, a story broke that the heads of several major technology firms, including Apple, were prepping an open letter to United States President Donald Trump as a means to voice opposition to the immigration executive order that he signed last Friday.

On Thursday, a draft of the full letter was shared online. The letter detailed the importance of immigrants in the U.S., shared concerns as to how the Trump administration’s immigration ban will affect employees with visas and explains that the companies are prepared to lend a hand to help the Trump administration make logical and necessary changes if and when it is ready to accept the help.

The companies involved with the creation of the open letter are said to include Facebook, Google, Uber, Microsoft, Stripe, and more. The technology companies drafting the letter are reportedly working to include non-tech companies as well, but as yet none have joined.

The letter currently reads as follows:

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Apple says it will work with Consumer Reports to isolate potential battery issues found in 2016 MacBook Pro

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Date: Tuesday, December 27th, 2016, 05:08
Category: battery, Google, Hardware, MacBook Pro, News, Software

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Following up on Consumer Reports refusal for the first time to recommend the 2016 MacBook Pro due to inconsistent battery life, it looks like Apple will be working with the publication to try to sort out potential issues with the battery.

“Working with [Consumer Reports] to understand their battery tests,” Apple Vice President of Worldwide Marking Phil Schiller tweeted. “Results do not match our extensive lab tests or field data.” Apple claims its internal testing has seen the new MacBook Pro providing up to 10 hours of battery life when watching iTunes movies or browsing the web.

Consumer Reports’ test has come under scrutiny since publication of the non-recommendation. The tests were conducted by opening a series of 10 web pages sequentially on Safari. This tests’ inconsistency had the 13-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar registering 16 hours, 12.75 hours and 3.75 hours of battery life. A 15-inch MacBook Pro ranged from 18.5 hours to 8 hours of battery life.

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Nintendo looks to release 2-3 titles per year on other platforms following Super Mario Run’s App Store success

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Date: Monday, December 26th, 2016, 05:48
Category: Android, Google, iOS, News, Software

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In just under two weeks, Super Mario Run has rocketed to the top of Apple’s App Store charts and has surpassed 50 million downloads.

That being said, and because Nintendo likes money and fiscal solvency, Nintendo president Tatsumi Kimishima revealed that Super Mario Run is just the start of a new strategy for mobile gaming. The company plans to release two or three new games next year, and continue that pattern beyond 2017, he said. Previously it was reported that popular titles Fire Emblem and Animal Crossing were on tap for a mobile release.

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Apple, Google to add railroad crossing data to map programs following fatal 2015 accident

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Date: Tuesday, December 20th, 2016, 05:27
Category: Google, iOS, News, Software

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Apple Maps will soon begin including railroad crossing data.

Following up on an accident last year in which Google Maps users Jose Alejandro Sanchez-Ramirez turned a Ford truck, hauling a trailer, where he thought the app was telling him to go, but wound up stuck on the railroad tracks at a poorly marked California crossing. After abandoning his vehicle, he and the engineer died after a commuter train barreled into the truck, a commuter train barreled into it, the accident also injuring 32 others.

Following a nearly two-year long investigation, the National Transportation Safety Board is calling on companies such as Apple and Google to add the exact location of 200,000 grade crossings to their mapping data…

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Rumor: Apple to use drones, indoor navigation to help round out Maps data

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Date: Friday, December 2nd, 2016, 05:29
Category: Google, iOS, Rumor

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Everyone’s starting to use drones for mapping these days and Apple is apparently no exception.

The company plans to use drones and new indoor navigation features to improve its Maps service and catch longtime leader Google, according to sources close to the story.

The Cupertino, California-based company is assembling a team of robotics and data-collection experts that will use drones to capture and update map information faster than its existing fleet of camera-and-sensor ladened minivans, one of the sources said.

Apple seems to want to fly things around to map things like street signs, track changes to roads and monitor if areas are under construction, the source said. The data collected would be sent to Apple teams that rapidly update the Maps app to provide fresh information to users, the person added.

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Netflix 9.0.1 for iOS released, adds offline viewing feature, incompatible with Chromecast and AirPlay (Updated)

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Date: Thursday, December 1st, 2016, 05:14
Category: Google, iOS, News, Software

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After months of rumors, Netflix has added an offline viewing feature to its application, as seen in the newly released Netflix 9.0.1 app for iOS.

According to Netflix, “many favorite streaming series and movies are already available for download, with more on the way.” Some of the content that’s ready to download includes Orange Is The New Black, Narcos and The Crown.

Users can snag content from a new “Available for Download” category within the app. When the option is available for an episode or movie, tap the download button like in the image below.

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