Samsung announces 256GB flash chips, could point the way towards increased storage for next-gen iPhones

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Date: Thursday, February 25th, 2016, 13:40
Category: Hardware, iPhone, News


This could turn into something really cool.

Samsung announced on Thursday that it’s now mass producing 256GB embedded flash memory chips for smartphones and other devices. The new memory chips are smaller than a microSD card and can pack up to 256GB thanks to Samsung’s V-Nand technology.

Based on the Universal Flash Storage (UFS) 2.0 specification, the new memory is almost twice as fast as SATA-based solid state storage drives on PCS, Samsung says. The new memory uses two lanes of data transfer to reach speeds of up to 850 megabytes per second (MB/s).


Leaked schematics shows similarities, differences between iPhone 5s and iPhone 5se models

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Date: Thursday, February 25th, 2016, 08:51
Category: Hardware, iPhone, News


Sometimes it’s the accessory and case makers that can tell you the most about an upcoming product.

The iPhone 5se, according to an unnamed case maker who offered schematics, seems to line up almost exactly with the dimensions used in the iPhone 5s.

The case maker stated that the product’s dimensions are indistinguishable from the iPhone 5s, meaning that the new device will fit inside of existing iPhone 5s cases. There are a couple of changes, however. First, these schematics indicate that the sleep/wake/power button has been relocated to the side.


Apple releases updated iOS 9.2.1 variant to make amends for handsets affected by Error 53

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Date: Thursday, February 18th, 2016, 13:00
Category: Hardware, iOS, iPhone, News, security


A bit of an apology from Apple following the “Error 53” controversy.

Apple on Thursday released an updated version of iOS 9.2.1, bypassing what the company has admitted to be a factory test of the Home button during start up.

Apple released an updated version of iOS 9.2.1 to restore newer iPhones that were disabled by Error 53. This iOS update will prevent future iPhones from experiencing Error 53 if they have their Home buttons repaired by a third-party repair shop. This update can only be installed by connecting the iPhone to iTunes on a Mac or PC, not over the air.


Federal judge orders Apple to help FBI unlock San Bernadino shooter’s iPhone 5c

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Date: Wednesday, February 17th, 2016, 08:19
Category: iOS, Legal, News, security, Software


A few months after the San Bernadino shootings, Apple was ordered by a U.S. federal judge on Tuesday to help the FBI unlock the iPhone 5c used by shooter Syed Farook. According to court papers, Apple “declined to provide [assistance] voluntarily.”

The judge ruled Tuesday that Apple had to provide “reasonable technical assistance” to the government in recovering data from the iPhone 5c, including bypassing the auto-erase function and allowing investigators to submit an unlimited number of passwords in their attempts to unlock the phone. Apple has five days to respond to the court if it believes that compliance would be “unreasonably burdensome.”

Prosecutors have argued that the “government was unable to complete the search because it cannot access the iPhone’s encrypted content.” The FBI argued that Apple has the “technical means” to assist the government and, in a statement, U.S. attorney Eileen M. Decker said that the order was a “potentially important step” in finding out “everything we possibly can” about the San Bernardino attack.


Rumor: iPad Air 3, iPhone 5se to go on sale on Friday, March 18th

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Date: Monday, February 15th, 2016, 07:29
Category: Hardware, iPad, iPhone, Rumor


It’s a rumor, but there’s a target that Apple’s apparently hit and it’s thought that the 4-inch iPhone (also known as the “iPhone 5se”) and a new iPad Air could surface at an event on Tuesday, March 15th, with the products up for sale online and in retail stores as early as Friday, March 18th, according to sources. Apple is unlikely to offer pre-orders for the new devices, according to sources who stated that the plans could still change.

This pattern of an introduction and a launch so soon afterwards while not offering pre-orders could be a new strategy for Apple. In the past, Apple has released new iPhone models one or two weeks following the introduction events and an online pre-order period. A similar strategy has been followed for many new iPad releases, but the iPad Pro hardware actually went on sale over two months following the device’s initial introduction. Manufacturing of the new 4-inch iPhone began ramping up in January, sources say.


Apple launches USB-C charging cable replacement program, cites “design issue”

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Date: Monday, February 15th, 2016, 04:42
Category: Hardware, MacBook, News, USB-C


When in doubt, offer a replacement program.

Apple on Friday announced that it will now offer free replacements for MacBook charging cables that use the USB Type-C specification because some of them have not been working correctly.

The company offered the following quote on the matter:

“A limited number of Apple USB-C charge cables that were included with MacBook computers through June 2015 may fail due to a design issue. As a result, your MacBook may not charge or only charge intermittently when it’s connected to a power adapter with an affected cable.”


TSMC to be exclusive manufacturer for iPhone 7’s A10 processor, will begin full production in June

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Date: Thursday, February 11th, 2016, 08:19
Category: Hardware, iPhone, News, Processors


It looks like TSMC will be taking on the full manufacturing load for the iPhone 7’s processor.

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company announced that they’ve reached a deal to produce the A10 processor and will most likely use a 10-nanometer manufacturing process. Full production is slated to begin in June.

Along with the 10-nanometer production process, TSMC is said to have beaten out rival Samsung for the contract given its better power performance and efficiency.


Apple launches iPhone screen protector program in assorted Apple Store retail locations

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Date: Tuesday, February 9th, 2016, 08:14
Category: Hardware, iPhone, News, retail


Apple’s new screen protector program is coming to Apple Store locations in the United States and other countries today. The program was first mentioned and rolled out to Japanese Apple Store locations last week and allows customers to get a Belkin screen protector carefully applied to their iPhone in store. At Apple Stores across America, customers can purchase a Belkin screen protector and have it applied in store by an Apple Store employee. The program supports only Apple’s latest iPhone models in both 4.7 and 5.5 inch variants: the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus.

The service looks to apply screen protectors to the iPhone, eliminating common errors like air bubbles. For the official experience, Apple employees will use a cloth to remove any dust from the iPhone before applying the protector with the mechanical system. As a guarantee, after application, unsatisfied customers can ask the Apple employee to repeat the process with a new cover to get the fit just right. The service is free with the purchase of the appropriate Belkin screen protector for your iPhone.


iPhone 6 users cite “Error 53” issue, Apple cracking down on third-party repairs

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Date: Friday, February 5th, 2016, 11:25
Category: Hardware, iOS, iPhone, News


Well, this is a royal mess.

A large number of iPhone 6 users are claiming that Apple’s latest operating system permanently disables the handset if it detects that a repair has been carried out by a non-Apple technician.

The issue, an “Error 53”, appears when the Touch ID button has been replaced by a “non-official” outfit or technician. The error, according to at least one report, “will kill your iPhone”.

The issue only comes to light when the latest version of Apple’s iPhone software, iOS 9, is installed. Indeed, the phone may have been working perfectly for weeks or months since a repair or being damaged.


Apple begins two new Apple Store iPhone incentive programs, goes after broken devices, offers protective screen replacement

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Date: Friday, February 5th, 2016, 08:44
Category: iPhone, News, retail


These could be two interesting moves on Apple’s part.

Apple is gearing up to launch a pair of new retail initiatives centered around the iPhone: an upgraded iPhone trade-in program for iPhones with damaged screens, cameras, or buttons, and a new program that allows Apple Retail Stores to install screen protectors on iPhones.

As of this week, Apple updated its Apple Store Reuse and Recycle iPhone trade-in program currently allows a customer to bring in an older iPhone model and trade it in for credit toward the purchase of a new iPhone model. The revised program will allow Apple Stores to give credit for iPhone 5s and iPhone 6/6 Plus units with damaged displays, cameras, and buttons within reason. Apple believes that this new program will encourage new iPhone upgrades versus a standard iPhone screen repair.