Affordable MacBook Available Soon?

Posted by Kirhat | Friday, September 21, 2018 | | 0 comments »

Apple has refreshed its top of the line MacBook Pro models a few weeks ago, but the company did not release any updated MacBook or MacBook Air models. However, that may change real soon as Apple could be launching 2018 version of its MacBook and/or MacBook Air in the coming months.

The news comes from Asia, where a manufacturer is expected to make plenty of "inexpensive notebooks" for Apple in the third quarter.

In a report that details the financial performance of two laptop makers, including Compal and Quanta, Digitimes explains that both companies shipped nearly as many notebooks in the second quarter, with the difference between them sitting at less than 700,000 units.

Compal is expected to see a dramatic ramp-up in orders this quarter, on strong orders for HP, and in spite of a cut in orders from Dell. Compal is expected to break 10 million units for the period.

Quanta’s shipments will rise to about 10 million during the fourth quarter, thanks to "orders for Apple's new inexpensive notebooks. Apple’s business would allow Quanta to stay in second place, trailing Compal by less than 100,000 in the fourth quarter."

The report doesn't reveal any details about Apple’s notebooks, but earlier rumors said that Apple is going to launch cheaper laptops this year, including a MacBook Air model with a Retina display. Even more logical is the upgrade of the 12-inch MacBook line, which Apple introduced just a few years ago.

Nobody has an idea what "inexpensive" means. But Apple is still selling the MacBook Air online and in stores, starting at US$ 999. The cheapest MacBook costs US$ 300 more than the most affordable Air.

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A Good Time To Buy Apple Watch

Posted by Kirhat | Wednesday, August 15, 2018 | | 0 comments »

Apple Watch
According to Digital Trends, when smartwatches came onto the scene a few years ago, they left many people – devout techies included – scratching their heads. Understandably, it didn’t take long for these interesting smart wearables to become an instant hit, nor did it take much time for Apple to overtake the competition.

The idea of an iPhone on a wrist is something a lot of folks were ready to get behind.

The Apple Watch has surged to prominence in recent years owing to its great design, excellent software, and sleek aesthetics. In fact, the Apple Watch now commands the largest share of the smartwatch market, nudging out the venerable Fitbit as the biggest name in the game.

With the Apple Watch Series 3, Series 2, and Series one all available on the open market, it’s no surprise sellers everywhere are competing for the lowest discount, especially for the Series 1.

Although it doesn't feature all of the enhancements of later models, the Apple Watch Series 1 is still a solid watch with a lot of wireless functionality. Somewhat confusingly, the Series 1 is actually the second-generation refresh of the 2015 Apple Watch, meaning it's technically the Apple Watch 2. It’s mostly identical to the original except that it boasts the newer S1P chip under the hood, making it roughly 50 percent faster than the older Series 1. This cheaper Apple Watch may not be the newest model, but it still pairs very nicely with that Space Grey iPhone or iPhone X and has a pretty decent battery life for a WatchOS device.

Like all Apple Watch models, the Series 1 runs on the intuitive WatchOS firmware (an iOS derivative purpose-built for the smaller Retina touch display), comes with a 38mm or 42mm aluminum case, and is compatible with a myriad of different wrist straps for sale — such as the black sport band, white sport band, and gold aluminum strap.

There are also customizable watch faces, a stainless steel case for protection, apps, and a ton of Apple Watch bands to choose from. It’s Wi-Fi and Bluetooth capable for easy syncing to your other iOS devices, and features 8GB of onboard storage and 512MB of RAM.

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Leaked Repair Docs on Apple’s Keyboard

Posted by Kirhat | Friday, August 03, 2018 | | 0 comments »

Apple Repair
Ever since Apple launched the 2018 MacBook Pro line a few days ago, many wondered whether the third-generation butterfly keyboard inside the new Macs also had a hidden feature, a permanent fix for that problem that affected so many people who purchased previous Pro generations.

Apple would not confirm any fixes in its marketing materials, instead saying that the redesigned keyboard was quieter, and would not admit that the new keyboard will be more resilient than the previous versions. But a first teardown of the new MacBook Pro revealed that Apple put in place a protection system for the butterfly mechanism to prevent debris from getting into it. Now, a new leak offers more confirmations about the fix.

Owners of MacBook (2015 and later) and MacBook Pro (2016 and later) laptops discovered that keys would become unresponsive if a tiny particle of dust ends up inside the keyboard.

To fix the issue, users need to replace the entire top side of the device, and the fix isn’t permanent. There's always a chance they will encounter the same problem in the future. Apple now has a repair program for affected buyers, but it's also the target of several lawsuits. That may be while Apple isn’t willing to publicly acknowledge the keyboard design issue that affected the previous notebooks.

But Apple published a new internal document for Apple Authorized Service Providers that mentions the fix:

"Keyboard and Keycaps
The keyboard has a membrane under the keycaps to prevent debris from entering the butterfly mechanism. The procedure for the space bar replacement has also changed from the previous model. Repair documentation and service videos will be available when keycap parts begin shipping."
The document was seen by at least two distinct sources, including US-based MacRumors and French site MacGeneration, so it definitely looks genuine.

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Apple Fall Products Leaked

Posted by Kirhat | Friday, July 27, 2018 | | 0 comments »

Apple Leaks
Some believed that the Apple Watch is one of the many Apple products in line for an update this fall. That's the word from analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, now with TF International Securities. His forecast, published by 9to5Mac, outlines what he expects from Apple's fall hardware lineup.

Much of the report sums up rumors everyone heard in recent weeks, including reports from Kuo. But it's valuable to see all of Apple's reported hardware plans laid out in one place.

It's unclear exactly when this updated hardware will make its debut, and Kuo holds out the possibility that products could be delayed. But here's a roundup of what's expected from Apple heading into the back-half of 2018.
  • iPhones: Kuo sees Apple coming out with two OLED-based iPhones — a 5.8-inch model replacing the current iPhone X and a 6.5-inch plus-sized version. A third iPhone will have a 6.1-inch LCD display. That's pretty consistent with the widely held expectations for this fall's iPhone roll-out — which have largely been shaped by previous Kuo reports.
  • Apple Watch: New Apple Watches will have larger displays — 1.57- and 1.78-inch screens, respectively, Kuo says in this new report. The new watches will also have improved heart rate monitoring. Again, that's in line with other rumors about the Apple Watch Series 4.
  • iPads: In addition to a new 12.9-inch version of the iPad Pro, Kuo thinks Apple has a new 11-inch model planned, likely replacing the 10.5-inch version of the tablet. These new iPads would support the Face ID unlocking feature found in the iPhone X, which likely means the home button is a goner on those tablets.
  • MacBooks: LaptopMag has more of the details on Apple's MacBook plans according to Kuo. But expect processor bumps to the MacBook and MacBook Pro. Kuo also talks up an unnamed "low-price notebook model," which could be a successor to the MacBook Air.
  • Desktop Macs: The iMac is in line for improvements to its processor and display, too, Kuo says. There's also a rumored update to the Mac Mini.
In addition to those long-time Apple products, Kuo expects an updated version of the AirPods wireless headphones to arrive, as earlier rumors have predicted. And the delayed AirPower charging pad should debut this fall, too.

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Will Apple Retire iPhone X?

Posted by Kirhat | Friday, July 20, 2018 | | 0 comments »

iPhone X Retiring
Most iPhone rumors suggest that Apple will release three new iPhones this fall, all featuring the same design as the current iPhone X. The list includes a cheaper 6.1-inch phone with an LCD screen, a handset some call the iPhone 9, as well as two iPhone X successor packing 5.8-inch and 6.5-inch OLED screens.

When these three new phones arrive, Apple is expected to retire the iPhone X and iPhone SE, a new report says. Apparently, Apple is betting big on the 2019 iPhone, which could convince more iPhone users to finally upgrade.

Seen by Barron’s, the BlueFin Research Partners note says that Apple is ramping up production like never before.

"Despite angst surrounding the 2018 September releases, one common thread we continually uncover is the lack of concern for overall demand for 2018-2019," analysts John Donovan and Steve Mullane said.

The analysts refer to the three 2018 iPhones as iPhone 9, iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Plus, which are extremely unrealistic names, especially the "11" part.

"The iPhone 11 Plus should satisfy those unhappy with the iPhone X due to size concerns, while the iPhone 9 device should satisfy more budget-conscious buyers and the aforementioned extension of the iPhone 8 model builds will round out a fairly extensive line-up. We continue to hear that upgrade activity over the past."
They also think that the upcoming iPhone series will fix Apple’s upgrade problem:

"1-2 cycles was below historical patterns for myriad reasons (size, cost, lack of differentiation from previous models) and so expectations are for an extended demand for these new iPhones which reach across multiple platforms."
The two said that Apple is planning to manufacture 91 million new iPhones this fall, and another 92 million in the first two quarters of 2019 — the latter figure would be "far larger than normal cycle."

The analysts expect Apple to make 28 million iPhone 9 and iPhone 11 units in the third quarter, 64 million in the Christmas quarter, and then 46 million iPhones in each of the following two quarters. The research notes that actual shipments will reach 20 million, 60 million, 45 million, and 40 million, respectively.

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iOS Updates Cause Battery Drain?

Posted by Kirhat | Friday, July 13, 2018 | | 0 comments »

iOS 11.4.1 Update
Some iOS users have been reporting problems with excessive battery drain after updating to iOS 11.4.

Last 8 July, 9to5Mac reported on a raft of posts on Apple forums complaining about excessive battery drain since updating. ZDNet also flagged complaints around the issue early last month.

The update to Apple's mobile operating system was released at the end of May, adding support for Messages in iCloud, plus some media and entertainment features, such as AirPlay 2 and support for two HomePod speakers to work as a stereo pair.

Safe to say, radically reduced battery life was not among the listed additions.

TechCrunch writer Natasha Lomas also noticed an alarming depreciation in battery performance after updating to iOS 11.4 at the end of last month - with the battery level dropping precipitously even when the handset was left untouched doing nothing.

TechCrunch reached out to Apple immediately after noticing the problem - but the company has not responded to multiple requests for comment.

Judging by forum complaints, other iOS users have also found that updating to iOS 11.4 impacts the standby battery life of their device.

The 'battery usage' report that's built into iOS also seemed unable to shed any light on what was causing the battery to drain so fast - listing an app that had been used prior to the previous charge as responsible for the largest chunk of usage. So evidently not identifying the real culprit.

In the end, rebooting the affected iPhone seemed to improve the battery drain issue.

Battery and performance issues have been something of a recurring problem for Apple's iOS devices in recent years.

Meanwhile after more user complaints last year Apple was forced to apologize for not being more transparent with customers about how it handles performance on iOS devices with older batteries - clarifying that its software in fact slows down the maximum performance of iPhones with older batteries as a power management technique to avoid unexpected shutdowns.

The company has faced lawsuits and regulatory scrutiny as a result of this throttling of device performance.

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