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Apple store heist, 1 great way Tim unwinds, and the future is bright for AirPods

Apple AirPods getting a makeover

Appleviews – 07th April 2023

An odd week

It’s not been the smoothest of weeks for Apple.

Their weather app drew much unwanted attention, many services were down, they announced their first layoffs, and the headset may be delayed again. Never a dull week huh…

Mac to go please

In what was almost a throwback to heists from the 70s and 80s, robbers tunnelled their way in to an Apple retail store in Seattle.

The store in the Alderwood Mall was broken in to via a tunnel from a coffee shop – seriously! The thieves originally broke in to Seattle Coffee Gear, which is adjacent to the Apple store.

The theft, which resulted in 436 iPhones worth $500,000 were stolen from the Apple store, but not even a coffee bean was stolen from Seattle Coffee!

Good for the mind

I don’t know about you, but I’ve often wondered what it would be like to spend a day in the shoes of Tim Cook.

Being the CEO of a multi-trillion dollar company, cannot be an easy ask. I’d have thought it stressful, and all-consuming. So, how does the man at the top of Apple manage to stay on-point, and de-stress?

For a man surrounded by cutting-edge tech all day, Cook turns to nature to help unclutter his brain. In an interview with GQ magazine, he says that as the pressure ramps up, he looks to get outside;

“I always think about hiking and the things that really settle my mind when I’m here. Going outside is like a palate cleanser for the mind. It’s better than any other thing you can possibly do.”

If it’s good enough for Cook…

Patently Apple

Apple is renowned for applying for patents, just to make sure they cover all eventualities. Often times, they come to nothing, but it is always an interesting insight as to what the future plans may be.

AirPods, which have essentially been the same design since they were first introduced in 2016, may be about to get a radical re-think if this new patent is anything to go by.

AirPods have always relied on having a driver nearby, such as an iPhone, or iPad, but that may change in the future.

The case could wind up having a touch screen on the front, similar in size to an Apple Watch. The case would allow you to control basic apps such as weather, maps, and messages. It would be Siri compatible, and would also allow you to Handoff music from your AirPods to HomePods. It happens to look great too – as you can see.

Clouds on the horizon

It’s been a bad week for Apple, and in particular, their iCloud services.

Many users, myself included, this week were affected by the Weather app, well, not giving us the weather. Not only that, but continuity services such as Handoff and Universal Control were down too. So, what’s been going on?

Checking in on Apple’s System Status page on Thursday, it said that the app had ongoing issues with slow or unreliable service since 11:27 am ET Thursday, following several issues earlier in the week.

The weather app could be in need of a major overhaul, but, for now, that will have to wait. It’s been a mish-mash of information coming out from Apple this week about the bug. First, they said it was resolved, then it’s not – it’s all been very un-Apple.

On Twitter, Apple simply said, “we are currently working on a solution for the Weather app outage and will post an update online.”

How have your devices been this week?

Time for change

According to an informed member of a MacRumors forum this week, iOS 17 is set for some major changes. This comes from the same person who leaked accurate information about Dynamic Island last year.

It seems that iOS17 will focus first on performance, and stability improvements. Not only that, though, Control Centre is set for a make-over as well. The latest OS will be showcased first at June’s WWDC event, and made available to the public in the fall – to coincide with the release of iPhone 15.

Control Centre has looked just about the same since iOS 11, and actually turns 10 years old this year – first being introduced with iOS 7. The forum member didn’t go into much detail as to what the overhaul may include, but, a re-design, and making it more customisable could be options.

What would you like to see changed in Control Centre, and how often do you use it?

Apple goes to the theatre

I mentioned last week, that in order for Apple Original Movies to be eligible for future Oscar nominations, that their movies would first have to play at cinemas, before streaming to Apple TV.

Well, one, the first of those, is set to be an epic. Apple will team up with Sony to give Ridley Scott’s Napoleon an exclusive worldwide showing at theatre’s first. The movie, starring Joaquin Phoenix, will open over the Thanksgiving weekend, on November 22nd.

Clearly serious about their future as full-blown moviemakers, before Napoleon hits the big screen, you’ll be able to see Martin Scorsese’s Killers of the Flower Moon. That movie, made with Paramount, stars Leonardo DiCaprio and Lily Gladstone, and opens October 6th.

Teen dreams

According to a recent Piper Sandler survey in the US, a whopping 87% of respondents to the survey own an iPhone. The retention stats are high too, with 88% expecting their next phone to still be an iPhone.

“Taking Stock with Teens”, is the 45th semi-annual Piper Sandler survey, and both results are close to record highs.

Apple Watch also continues to be popular too, with 41% now owning one, which is up from 37% last year. As a natural lead on from the popularity of Apple Watch and iPhone, it makes sense that Apple Pay is their favoured payment app as well.

In fact, the only area that Apple took a hit in the teen survey, was with their music streaming service. There, they lost out to Spotify, with 68.1% saying Spotify was stilltheir favoured streaming platform.

And, speaking of Spotify…

Siri play Spotify

Spotify & Apple are not the greatest of friends.

Spotify still runs a public tab, of all the decisions that they consider unfair, or uncompetitive – including the fact Apple dared to release HomePod without support for Spotify.

Since those early days though, Apple has since added support for Spotify, yet it still doesn’t work on the smart speaker. The reason is that Spotify is yet to add support for HomePod, and they seem in no rush to come onside anytime soon, either.

Spotify claims it’s because there is no great demand from their users, saying there has not been “significant volumes” of requests to force them to change their minds. In a statement, they simply say;

“Spotify remains committed to supporting AirPlay 2 at some point in the future. We’re on a path towards making it happen eventually, but we cannot state when that will be at this stage.”

iMight

Apple introduced their colourful, playful iMacs in 2021, and since then, no love has been shown to the range of consumer level iMacs.

Recently, though, rumours have started to surface, suggesting that a new model may be on the horizon. If we are to get a new 24-inch iMac, what can we expect then?

We are told that the display and range of available colours will remain untouched. In fact, the only external change could be to the stand, which may now offer height adjustment, to go along with the existing tilt.

The main changes will be inside, where the next-gen M3 chip will be used. The M3 chip will be built on TSMC’s 3-nanometer process, bringing notable power and efficiency improvements.

Given there are no major design changes, it’s likely the next iMac could be released pretty quickly – as early as before the end of the year, according to Mark Gurman. All we are really waiting on is the new chip, then we should be good to go.

Of course, if they refresh the smaller iMac, and the only iMac currently in the range, would they also see that as a good opportunity to reintroduce the much-loved 27-inch iMac Pro? There has been chat since late last year of an iMac Pro being offered with both M3 Pro, aand M3 Max processors.

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