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iPhone 15 latest, big Apple headset news, the WWDC schedule & Apple Car news

Apple iPhone 15 & Apple Car latest

Appleviews – 19th May 2023

Lens itself to be bigger

As the weeks pass by we get ever closer to the release of Apple’s iPhone 15. And the stories, leaks and rumours are flowing thick and fast.

The much-touted periscope lens looks as if it will now only be available on the Pro Max – driving a very definite line between the two top-of-the-range handsets. The benefit of the periscope lens is it will deliver far better zoom results of up to 5x or even6x – but it comes at a price.

The lens set-up is so large that Apple may have to re-jig the internals to fit everything in and the lens array on the Pro Max may have to change to accommodate it. The physical dimensions of the periscope lens mean that Apple’s engineers will be forced into swapping the telephoto and Ultrawide lenses around.

If you can wait a year though and want to save some money, Ming-Chi Kuo this week wrote on Medium that he believes that the periscope lens will make its way to the iPhone 16 Pro model next year.

Winding up production

This week, respected display analyst Ross Young tweeted that Apple is expected to start mass production of the iPhone 15’s panel earlier than usual – sometime in June to help avoid supply shortages further down the line.

Having learned from the mistakes of last year with the lack of iPhone 14 screens the decision has been taken to start mass production in early June this year. According to Young both the 15 and 15 Pro are anticipated to have “early lead volume”. Young also believes that Dynamic Island will this year be rolled out across the entire lineup and that this year’s phones will have the thinnest bezels yet – even though the actual screen sizes remain unchanged.

While the rumours of solid-state volume buttons with haptic feedback have been dropped due to supply chain issues, the new Action button that will replace the mute flick-switch is still due to make its debut.

Whats going on at WWDC

With only a few weeks to go now until this summer’s WWDC event, Apple has posted the full schedule.

Developers will be allowed to check in Sunday and then have breakfast at Apple Park before the 10am keynote speech on Monday 5th June. Later that day there will also be the State of the Union keynote, which details the day’s announcements. Monday afternoon there will be a chance to tour the main building called The Ring and then in the evening, there will be the now traditional Apple Design Awards keynote and then a mysterious Special Evening Activity “you won’t want to miss” at Caffè Macs.

The rest of the week is then handed over to developer sessions that will take place in the Apple Developer Centre – a space that opened last year. Special sessions have been noted, but Apple has not said what those sessions will be focused on.

As normal we’ll get a look at the latest OS – iOS 17, iPadOS 17, macOS 14, watchOS 10 and tvOS 17.

iOS 16.5 is out now

I’ve been busy this morning updating my iPhone, iPad TV 4K and HomePods with the latest OS. Although there are some new features, the main reason you need to install them now is for security reasons.

Apple listed thirty-nine security vulnerabilities that this update fixes, but has highlighted three which ”may have been actively exploited”.

These three are made more severe by the fact that security analysts believe that hackers and scammers have already been using them to attack iPhone users. Normally Apple’s engineers are ahead of the scammers, but this time they were caught off guard.

All three flaws are to be found in Apple’s WebKit frameworks meaning that attackers could break into your iPhone and access sensitive, secure data via a nefarious web page or a link sent on a message.

The most serious of the three threats would allow a remote attacker to break out of the Web content Sandbox – meaning they could gain access to the partitioned area of the memory that would normally restrict web apps from accessing system resources.

All told I’d say it’s worth you getting the 16.5 updates done as soon as possible.

Google sharing the podcast love

Google has made it easier to stream podcasts from the Apple Podcast platform direct from a Google search.

Earlier this year Google took down a feature that let users play podcasts directly from search results saying simply that they’d be shifting to a new design.

Now a generic search for tech or movie podcasts made on iPhone or iPad will result in an option to ‘Listen on Apple Podcasts’.

As of writing the feature has only been rolled out to Google Search users in the U.S. but as soon as initial performance tests have been analysed it will be made available to other markets soon.

Tales of woe for the headset

Unless hell freezes over it now looks certain that Apple’s mixed reality headset will be unveiled at June’s WWDC event – but it is far from floating everyone’s boat.

The device which has been in development since 2015 has proven to be both troublesome and divisive. Bloomberg reported this week that the headset still emotes somewhat shaky support from Apple’s top brass. CEO Tim Cook is reported to have taken a very ‘hands-off’ approach in its development which has propagated a widespread lack of confidence in the device & platform in general. And he’s not alone in his criticism either – Johny Srouji, Apple’s senior vice president of hardware technologies has dismissed it as a “science project”.

The lack of a strong direction or even any passion for the project coming from Apple’s management has been noted at Apple Park. Whilst Steve Jobs was known to be a very hands-on kind of manager, Cook has a more aloof persona which hasn’t helped to instil any confidence in the project. Apart from Cook & Srouji, Craig Federighi, senior VP of software engineering has been known to be very wary of it for a while now.

Their dismissive responses over the headset which we have found out today is expected tocost about $1500 to produce are centred around two main concerns;

  1. It’s too far removed from Apple’s initial vision. Early on in its design, Cook had been steadfast in it being a device that would be light enough to be worn all day and one that would replace the iPhone. Through its development, it has morphed from being an ultra-powerful VR headset with an off-board mini-computer hub to power it, through to a standalone lightweight headset before finally settling on the ski-goggle concept – a kind of fish-mash of all concepts.
  2. And they fear it lacks a big single ‘wow’ factor. For example, there had been long-held hopes that it would act as a full-on external display for your Mac or have a noteworthy multi-person video call feature. But at the end of the day, although both will be functions on the headset, they will be far watered-down versions of what had initially been hoped for. Many engineers still feel it is not ready for release, but Cook and co are pushing for release despite its rumoured crudeness and shortcomings.

Remember Apple Car?

Before the headset was drawing all the limelight, Apple Car was the next big thing on the block.

News about the development of Project Titan has been thin on the ground over recent months but a patent application surfaced this week that has rekindled the Titan fires.

It would now seem Apple will look to build their car rather than partner with an existing manufacturer. The patent I spotted this week would put a huge smart table running down the centre of the car.

The EV will be fully autonomous, and according to Patently Apple, it could now feature a large table that would double up as a massive touchscreen – almost like a car-sized iPad. The table retracts to make for easier access for passengers. The patent also hints that the table could be used in a home or office setting as well.

Multiview for Apple TV+

Apple has now officially launched the new Multiview feature for Apple TV 4K.

To take advantage of it, first, make sure you update to tvOS 16.5 Settings > System > Updates. Multiview is currently for the sports enthusiast – allowing users to watch up to four streams of MLS Season Pass or MLB Friday Night Baseball at the same time.

The feature becomes available when at least two live MLS or MLB games are being streamed. Then a ‘4×4 grid’ icon appears in the video player, which you can click on to start a Multiview session.

Users can arrange a grid of up to four matches to play simultaneously allowing them to keep up to date on all games in real time. By hovering over a video feed you’ll be able to hear its audio.

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