Meitu selfie app apparently collecting, transmitting user data back to Chinese source

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Date: Monday, January 23rd, 2017, 05:11
Category: Android, iOS, iPhone, News, privacy, security, Software

The good news is that the Meitu app adds some cool selfie editing tools, allowing you to pretty much transform your selfie pictures into nifty anime characters.

The bad news is that the app is apparently sending back as much private information as it can to a Chinese source.

The MeituPic app, launched in 2013, soared to the top of the Chinese app charts. It was rebranded as “Meitu” in 2016 and works by taking a selfie, smoothing a person’s skin, adding virtual makeup and a number of other effects.

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Exclusive Apple, Amazon deal comes to close, brings non-Audible audiobooks to iTunes

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Date: Friday, January 20th, 2017, 05:32
Category: Apple, iTunes, iTunes Store, News, Software

You’ll soon be able to snag non-Audible audiobooks within iTunes.

A long-standing exclusive arrangement between Apple and Amazon, which has been in place since 2003, came to an end earlier this month following complaints from German publishers and investigations by European antitrust regulators, who were concerned that the agreement was stifling competition and raising prices.

Regulators began investigating in late 2015. It appears all investigations are being suspended in light of the companies’ decisions to end the exclusivity agreement.

“With the deletion of the exclusivity agreement, Apple will now have the opportunity to purchase digital audiobooks from other suppliers,” Andreas Mundt, president of Germany’s antitrust agency, said in a statement. “This will enable a wider range of offer and lower prices for consumers.”

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Rumor: Apple could delay next-gen iPads until second half of 2017

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Date: Friday, January 20th, 2017, 05:08
Category: Hardware, iPad, Processors, Rumor

The next-gen iPads might not launch “until the second half of 2017,” according to sources in the upstream supply chain. The new 9.7-inch iPad is predicted to enter mass production sometime in Q1 2017, while the 10.5-inch and 12.9-inch iPad models will begin production in Q2 of this year. All of the new iPads are described as still being in the “planning” phase.

While it’s generally expected for Apple to announce and launch new iPads in spring, the rumor has it that it could be longer. In December, “lower-than-expected” yield rates for the 10-nanometer manufacturing process was rumored to be a potential factor in a delayed launch for the new iPads.

The supply chain sources have identified the 10.5-inch iPad Pro as a contender to replace the price tier of the existing 9.7-inch iPad Pro, while the new 9.7-inch version will be introduced at an even lower cost to become an entry-level device, “mainly targeting the education sector.”

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Monitor your home’s electricity usage on your iPhone

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Date: Thursday, January 19th, 2017, 11:18
Category: Gadget, Hardware, Hardware, Home, Home Automation, Review

The RFA-Z109 Eagle from Rainforest AutomationIn our world of the quantified self, Internet of Thing (IoT) and home automation I figured it would be trivial to find a way to monitor my home’s electricity usage remotely and in real-time (without having to unscrew the panel on my electricity panel.) Boy, was I wrong.

I’m a diehard fan of Nest, Dropcam, Hue, Ring and their ilk and I’ve used TED5000 for electricity monitoring at a previous house, but TED requires a fair amount of knowledge (and bravery!) to get set up correctly. After moving to a new house I was determined to find an easy-to-install solution to monitor my home’s insatiable appetite for electricity, and I found it!

Unfortunately, home electricity monitoring products aren’t as popular as I thought, and there’s a pretty high set of requirements that you need to hurdle to achieve such a feat.

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Apple patches “Fruitfly” malware, which relied on pre-OS X system calls

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Date: Thursday, January 19th, 2017, 05:30
Category: Developer, News, security, Software

Apple appears to have nixed the “Fruitfly” malware strain.

The malware, which has been patched over, relied on antiquated code predating OS X. Although older, the Fruitfly malware had been used in real-world attacks on biomedical research groups according to security software maker Malwarebytes.

Fruitfly operated by communicating with two command-and-control servers, and can perform actions like typing, webcam and screen captures, and moving and clicking a mouse cursor, Malwarebytes said in a blog post on Wednesday. It also maps other devices on a network and tries to connect to them.

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Rumor: Apple to incorporate facial and gesture recognition for next-gen iPhone

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Date: Thursday, January 19th, 2017, 05:44
Category: Hardware, iPhone, Rumor

It’s a rumor, but there could be some truth to it.

Cowen’s Timothy Arcuri has released a note stating that the next-gen iPhone will gain a front-facing sensor that will be used for both facial and gesture recognition.

Arcuri informed the firm’s clients that the expected iPhone 8 will include a new 5.8-inch model with an OLED wraparound display, wireless charging, “some form of facial/gesture recognition supported by a new laser sensor and an infrared sensor mounted near the front-facing camera”, and Touch ID embedded in the display.

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AT&T discontinues 2G network, ends cellular connectivity for first-gen iPhone

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Date: Wednesday, January 18th, 2017, 05:50
Category: Hardware, iPhone, News, wireless

It’s time to move on where AT&T, the first-gen iPhone and cellular service are concerned.

On Monday, AT&T announced that its 2G wireless network was officially shut down on January 1, 2017, following four years of planning for its discontinuation.

This means that the 2G network available to the original first-gen iPhone will no longer receive cellular service from the AT&T network.

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Rumor: Apple planning iPhone 6 battery replacement program

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Date: Wednesday, January 18th, 2017, 05:42
Category: battery, Hardware, iPhone, Rumor

If you’ve been having troubles with your iPhone 6 battery, Apple may have a warranty program en route to help out.

An unconfirmed rumor has stated that Apple may be preparing a battery replacement program for the iPhone 6 handset, much the same as the popular iPhone 6s battery replacement program.

When Apple announced the 6s program, it said that only a ‘very small number’ of 6s units were affected, all of which were manufactured during a two-month period, making it seem unlikely on the face of it that the same issue could affect an earlier model.

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Samsung completes internal investigation, finds battery issues caused Galaxy Note 7 overheating/fires

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Date: Tuesday, January 17th, 2017, 05:39
Category: battery, Hardware, News, Samsung

Samsung has completed its internal investigation and has noted that the battery- and not any faults in software or other hardware – was to blame for the fires that led to the recall and ultimate cancellation of the Galaxy Note 7.

The company was able to successfully reproduce the fires during the course of its investigation and ruled out other causes. It’s unknown as to whether Samsung is blaming defective parts, or as is sometimes suspected, that there was simply too little space allocated for the battery.

An anonymous source has statutes that Samsung is likely to announce the results of its investigation on January 23rd, exactly one day before it releases its fourth quarter results.

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Rumor: Apple to update MacBook Pro lineup with Kaby Lake processors, 32 GB of RAM option for 15-inch model

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Date: Tuesday, January 17th, 2017, 05:56
Category: Hardware, MacBook Pro, Processors, Rumor

As far as rumors go, this is pretty cool.

Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI Securities released a new investors note today, stating that the current MacBook Pro lineup for 2017 will offer Intel’s latest Kaby Lake chipset along a new 32GB RAM option for the 15-inch model.

Intel just announced its 7th generation Kaby Lake processors at CES and Kuo predicts that the first model that will see the upgraded chip will be the 12-inch MacBook. Mass production of that new machine will begin in Q2 of this year, according to Kuo, while a 16GB memory option will also be added to the device.

It’s also been stated that the 13-inch and 15-inch MacBook Pro notebooks with Kaby Lake processors will enter production in Q3 of 2017.

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