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New Ceramic and Titanium Apple Watch Models Uncovered in watchOS 6 Beta

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New leaked assets from the watchOS 6 beta suggest Apple plans to launch new ceramic and titanium Apple Watch models as early as next month.


Discovered by iHelpBR, the assets belong to the initial Apple Watch setup screen animation, which resembles the rear design of the watch including the model type and the words "Designed by Apple in California."

The firmware assets clearly reference a 44mm titanium case and a 44mm ceramic case. iHelpBR has also found analogous assets for the 40mm size Apple Watch model.

Back in February, respected Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo predicted Apple would introduce a "new ceramic casing design" to its Apple Watch line-up, and these assets do appear to back up that claim.

Apple introduced "Edition" models with the Apple Watch Series 2 that were made from ceramic. Prices started at $1,299, which it continued offering when the Series 3 Apple Watches came out, but Apple discontinued the Edition models when the Series 4 launched last year.

Current Apple Watch models do have a ceramic back, but the assets indicate Apple will revisit a new high end ceramic model in 2019. And it looks like we can also expect an entirely new titanium model – a material perhaps currently in favor at Apple following work on its just-released titanium Apple Card.

Apple Watch Series 2 ceramic model in white

It's not clear if the titanium casing will replace stainless steel or become an additional option. Another unanswered question is whether these materials will be exclusive to a new Apple Watch Series 5, or also be offered as extra case material options for existing models.

According to the latest prediction from Kuo, Japan Display will supply the OLED displays for new Apple Watch Series 5 models slated to launch in the second half of 2019. Beyond that, we know very little about what to expect about the Series 5.

Apple is expected to unveil its new iPhone lineup on September 10, so it's likely these Apple Watch models will be unveiled during the same event.

Related Roundups: Apple Watch, watchOS 5, watchOS 6
Buyer's Guide: Apple Watch (Caution)

This article, "New Ceramic and Titanium Apple Watch Models Uncovered in watchOS 6 Beta" first appeared on MacRumors.com

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App Developers Claim Apple's iOS 13 Location Tracking Changes Are Anti-Competitive

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Apple in iOS 13 made changes to the way location tracking permissions work, and there's no longer an option for apps to ask to "Always Allow" location tracking.

Instead, Apple allows users to select "Allow While Using the App," "Allow Once," or "Don't Allow," which some app creators have taken offense to. The leaders of seven companies that make apps for iOS devices banded together to write an email to Apple CEO Tim Cook to speak out about the changes, with the details shared by The Information.

There's no longer an "Always Allow" option on privacy popups in iOS 13 for enabling permanent location access

The companies that wrote to Cook are upset that there's no longer a readily available "Always Allow" option. Users can still turn on "Always Allow" in the Privacy section of the Settings app, but it's not available by default and requires additional steps.

As an example, Zenly, a location tracking app owned by Snap, needs to have location tracking on permanently to function. Since there's no option to turn on "Always Allow," Zenly has to have a clunky secondary display screen that instructs users to open up the Privacy settings on their iPhones to change the location setting. This makes consumers more aware of apps that are tracking them continually, but it is an extra step that app developers must contend with.

Apps that want continual location data must instruct customers to enable it in the Settings app

According to the companies who wrote to Cook, the changes could potentially lead users to think their apps are broken unless they're "savvy enough" tweak Privacy settings. These are the companies whose leaders wrote to Cook about the privacy changes:

  • Tile - Makes tracking devices for wallets, keys, and other objects.

  • Arity - A company owned by Allstate that developers technology for measuring driver risk.

  • Life360 - An app for sharing location with family and friends.

  • Zenly - A location sharing app owned by Snap.

  • Zendrive - A company that makes driver assessment apps.

  • Twenty - A social networking app for finding friends nearby.

  • Happn - A dating app.


The app creators suggested Apple create a two-step process that would let users grant apps access to locations as a solution, but it's not clear if Apple has plans to implement changes.

The companies were also concerned about changes Apple is making to a VoIP feature designed to let apps run in the background to listen for calls, but that was being abused for other tracking purposes. Apple doesn't plan to let developers use Apple's PushKit API for anything beyond voice calls in iOS 13.

While the companies admit that apps used this feature for tracking user location and for gathering data, they claim the change will hurt important app features. As an example, Life360 reportedly uses the feature to access a user's location to dispatch emergency services when a customer is involved in a car accident.

The email ends by pointing out that Apple's own apps do not need to get user permission to access user location, such as for Find My, which is built into the iPhone as a way to keep track of iOS and macOS devices.
"Like you, we are committed to ensuring that privacy is a top priority, but are concerned that the current implementation will create user confusion that actually undermines this goal," the e-mail to Cook reads. "The changes also have the added effect of removing critical geolocation functionality while simultaneously not applying to Apple's own apps, some of which compete with the products we develop."
In response to questions about the email, an Apple spokesperson told The Information that Apple's goal is to make the App Store a safe, trusted source for apps and to give its users the best products and ecosystem in the world.
We take responsibility for ensuring that apps are held to a high standard for privacy, security and content because nothing is more important than maintaining the trust of our users. Users trust Apple--and that trust is critical to how we operate a fair, competitive store for developer app distribution. Any changes we make to hardware, software or system level apps is in service to the user, their privacy and providing them the best products and ecosystem in the world.
In addition, Apple said that it is working with some of the companies that signed the email to find alternative methods for features that are being obsoleted, such as background tracking for purposes other than voice calls.

Apple also says that while system apps like Find My don't need to make location tracking requests from users, some Apple apps distributed through the App Store will abide by Apple's processes for requesting user permission to access location information. The full report with additional details can be read over at The Information.


This article, "App Developers Claim Apple's iOS 13 Location Tracking Changes Are Anti-Competitive" first appeared on MacRumors.com

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Kuo: Apple Watch Series 5 Lineup to Launch in Fall With OLED Displays Supplied by Japan Display

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Japan Display will supply OLED displays for new Apple Watch Series 5 models slated to launch in the second half of 2019, according to the latest prediction from well-known analyst Ming-Chi Kuo.


In a research note with TF International Securities shared with Chinese media outlets today, Kuo forecasted that Japan Display will gradually increase its proportion of OLED display orders for the Apple Watch, starting with 15-20 percent of orders in 2019 and reaching 70-80 percent in 2021.

Kuo believes that Apple will also gradually increase the proportion of LG's supply of OLED displays for iPhones, and tap Chinese manufacturer BOE as an additional supplier, in a bid to diversify its supply chain.

Apple Watch Series 5 models will likely be unveiled next month alongside a trio of new iPhones. This would hardly be a surprise, as Series 1 through Series 4 models all launched in September, but specific rumors about Series 5 models have actually been relatively quiet, so this is nice reassurance.

For example, Kuo previously said a "new ceramic casing design" would be "added" to the Apple Watch lineup, but he did not explicitly mention Series 5 models. Reuters also reported that Japan Display would begin supplying OLED displays for the Apple Watch, but likewise did not specify Series 5 models.

Looking farther ahead, rumors suggest that Apple Watch Series 6 models will adopt MicroLED displays in 2020.

Related Roundups: Apple Watch, watchOS 5, watchOS 6
Buyer's Guide: Apple Watch (Caution)

This article, "Kuo: Apple Watch Series 5 Lineup to Launch in Fall With OLED Displays Supplied by Japan Display" first appeared on MacRumors.com

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Hands-On With CarPlay in iOS 13: Everything That's New

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Along with many new features for the iPhone and the iPad, iOS 13 brings updates to CarPlay, overhauling the interface for the first time in years and adding useful new functionality.

In our latest YouTube video, we went hands-on with CarPlay in iOS 13 to give MacRumors readers an idea of what's new with Apple's in-car platform.

Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos.

CarPlay in iOS 13 has a redesigned and revamped Home screen with new table views, rounded corners, and an updated Home button that swaps between a dashboard icon and an app row icon depending on what app you're using.

The new tile-like user interface displays the Maps app, Shortcuts, Siri suggestions, Music Now Playing interface, and upcoming Calendar events all at a glance, which is convenient. Tapping on any of the tiles opens up the relevant app. You can, of course, still access the standard icon list from previous versions of CarPlay with a swipe.

In the new Calendar app, you can see all of your upcoming events for the day, which is useful for when you get in the car in the morning. If a calendar event has a location associated with it, you can tap on the event and get directions to where you need to go.


Maps has an updated look and feel, and it takes advantage of all of the features in iOS 13. In supported areas, there's better detail for roads, buildings, parks, and more, and you can use the Favorites and Collections features to route to saved locations. It's also easier to find points of interest along your current route in Maps.

Siri in Maps uses more natural language, which is a great update. As an example, instead of hearing "Turn right in 1,000 feet," Siri might instead say "turn right at the next traffic light."


Updates to the Music app make it easier to navigate through your music library, playlists, radio stations, and more, so you can find just what you want to hear with little effort. The Now Playing UI has also been updated with album art throughout the entire CarPlay interface, which is an improvement over CarPlay in iOS 12.


There's Siri support for third-party navigation apps, so you can ask Siri to do something like route you home using the Waze app instead of Apple Maps. In the future, Siri support could also come to music apps like Spotify in CarPlay thanks to new SiriKit APIs. You're also now able to use "Hey Siri" across all vehicles for easier Siri activation.

For those with HomeKit products like garage door openers, there's a handy Siri suggestions feature that does things like bring up an icon to open up your garage when you approach home. There are multiple Siri suggestions like this that are going to vary based on your CarPlay usage, but it's definitely a neat and useful addition.

CarPlay has a Settings app in iOS 13, so you can adjust Do Not Disturb While Driving, turn Siri on and off, turn off album art, and switch the appearance between the default dark mode and a new lighter user interface.

Also new to CarPlay is support for using CarPlay and your iPhone at the same time. In earlier versions of CarPlay, if you had Maps up but wanted to do something like change the music on your phone, it would kick you out of Maps on CarPlay. That's not the case anymore, so now you can have Maps up while doing other things on your iPhone.

All in all, iOS 13 brings some much needed changes to the CarPlay experience, and it should be a welcome update for CarPlay users. Know of an iOS 13 CarPlay feature that we left out? Let us know in the comments.

Related Roundups: CarPlay, iOS 13, iPadOS

This article, "Hands-On With CarPlay in iOS 13: Everything That's New" first appeared on MacRumors.com

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HomePod Launching in Japan and Taiwan on August 23, Pre-Orders Available Now

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Apple's HomePod is set to launch in Japan and Taiwan next week, on Friday, August 23, Apple announced today. Ahead of the launch, Apple is accepting pre-orders through its online stores in Japan and Taiwan.


The HomePod is available for ¥32,800 in Japan and NT$9,900 in Taiwan, which is $10 to $15 higher than the price in the U.S. When the HomePod first launched in the United States in 2018, it was priced at $349, but the price was lowered to $299 in April of this year.

Apple announced plans to expand the HomePod to Japan and Taiwan earlier this summer, and added support for the new countries in the 12.4 software made available for the HomePod in late July.

Apple now sells the HomePod in the United States, United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Spain, Mexico, China, and Hong Kong, along with Taiwan and Japan.

Related Roundup: HomePod
Buyer's Guide: HomePod (Neutral)

This article, "HomePod Launching in Japan and Taiwan on August 23, Pre-Orders Available Now" first appeared on MacRumors.com

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