Items tagged with iPhone

A company that develops digital forensics tools for businesses and law enforcement specialists has found a way to hack into locked Apple iPhone devices running the latest version of iOS. The method is said to work on most iPhone models, from the iPhone 5s through the iPhone X, and is effective on iOS 12 through iOS 13.3. The company is called Elcomsoft, and the newly expanded ability comes by way of an update to its iOS Forensic Toolkit. Specifically, the update allows the software to extract select keychain records in the BFU (Before First Unlock). That means it can pluck sensitive data from affected iPhone devices that have been powered off or rebooted, without having to enter in a passcode.... Read more...
Privacy in the internet era is a myth, folks. We learn this lesson all the time, though sometimes the lesson hits particulary hard. One example is when former NSA contractor Edward Snowden blew the whistle on the US government's extensive spying program. Now several years later, an investigation into the extent that smartphone devices are tracked has led to some startling details that drives this point home yet again. The parallels between these two revelations are hard to ignore, even though they are not exactly the same. When Snowden came forward with information about the government's efforts to spy on the public at large, it was through the media, which published documents and information... Read more...
You've heard the saying, 'All good things come to an end', just in this case the end feels rather abrupt and petty. You see, an app called Rewound was making some heavy traction by allowing iPhone users to turn their handsets into virtual iPod devices by way of downloadable skins, complete with the iconic clickwheel. This did not sit well with Apple, which has decided to remove Rewound from the App Store. I go back and forth on how I feel about this. The knee-jerk reaction is to rage at Apple for popping this balloon, especially after it already had allowed Rewound access to the App Store. As the developers of Rewound point out in a Medium post, the app "grew exponentially across the world from... Read more...
Smartphone photography has grown leaps and bounds over the past several years, with flagship handsets these days wielding multiple camera sensors to take high quality shots. Software processing is important too, though. In that regard, Apple's acquisition of UK-based startup Spectral Edge Ltd. could give its future iPhone models a boost in photography performance. That's important because photography has become the main battle in the smartphone wars. The iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max, for example, wield a triple lens system on the rear, consisting of a 12-megapixel ultra-wide (f/2.4 aperture and 120-degree field of view), wide (f/1.8 aperture), and telephoto (f/2.0) cameras. Spectral Edge... Read more...
Apple created a bit of ill-will for itself after it leveraged the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) to compel Twitter to take down a tweet of an encryption key for its iPhone handsets. Around the same time, several DMCA take down requests were also sent to Reddit for posts on r/jailbreak, though it has not been confirmed if Apple and its legal time were behind the latter. As it applies to the Twitter post, security researcher "Siguza" (@s1guza) posted what looks to be an encryption key that could potentially be used to reverse engineer the iPhone's Secure Enclave Processor, thereby defeating the device's encryption scheme and exposing sensitive data. That did not sit well with Apple. The... Read more...
Apple is no stranger to removing ports from its devices. On the MacBook side, the company killed off MagSafe, HDMI, and SD card readers (among other things) in an effort "simplify" things. Even the iPhone has not escaped the scalpel, as caught a lot of heat when it removed the 3.5mm headphone jack starting with the iPhone 7 in 2016. Now a new report coming from analyst Ming-Chi Kuo indicates that Apple is on the path to removing another well-used (and incredibly important) port from the iPhone. According to Kuo, Apple will remove the Lightning port from the iPhone starting in 2021. Now before you jump to the conclusion that Apple is dropping the Lightning port in favor of USB-C, we must stop... Read more...
Apple may have not been able to deliver the goods with respect to a 5G iPhone in 2019, but it’s not like 5G coverage is widespread right now in major markets. However, Apple is looking to blanket the market with 5G-capable iPhones in 2020 according to respected analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. According to Kuo, Apple will release no less than five new iPhone models during 2020. The first of which is the long-rumored iPhone SE 2, which will more-or-less be a retread of the iPhone 8, but with more modern internals. We’re likely to see an A13 Bionic-class SoC running the show along with the familiar 4.7-inch LCD display, Touch ID, single rear camera, and 4G LTE connectivity. The... Read more...
Today 5G mobile networks are only offered in a few select locations, but broader rollouts are coming in 2020. That means that more 5G smartphones are coming to take advantage of those networks. With the legions of iPhone fans, many are hopeful that the 5G iPhones will land in late 2020. Qualcomm recently announced its latest SoCs, and while at the event for those new products, Qualcomm president Cristiano Amon talked about its plans with the relationship it has with Apple. Qualcomm and Apple have a multi-year licensing deal in place. According to Amon, the first 5G iPhones that launch will feature Qualcomm modems inside, but they may not implement all of the company's RF front end. That decision... Read more...
This is the time of year when retailers can build good will with customers by offering swank discounts on everything under the sun, and as we have seen in years past, the deals are not limited to just Black Friday and Cyber Monday—the deal season typically runs from mid-November to late December. Walmart, however, can't seem to get out of its own way. The latest complaint from Black Friday shoppers is that Walmart is sending out emails saying they may cancel their iPhone orders. Starting on Black Friday (November 29), Walmart offered store gift cards when activating certain phones. This is actually still being advertised on Walmart's website. The amount varies by phone, with the iPhone... Read more...
Facebook is a company that is no stranger to controversy, privacy lapses, or downright bizarre behavior that has drawn the ire of users and politicians on Capitol Hill. The company's latest misstep is likely to further tarnish the company, which just hasn't been able to catch a break during 2019. There is apparently a "bug" in the current version of the Facebook app for iOS that results in some pretty atypical behavior. According to Joshua Maddux, who first discovered the oddity and posted video evidence to Twitter, the Facebook app is actively querying the iPhone's camera in the background when scrolling through the News Feed.  If you have an iPhone, and have given the app access... Read more...
iOS 13 and its various iterations have been hell for Apple and its users. Surprisingly, iOS 13 hasn't been a radical overhaul for Apple's mobile operating system, but the sheer numbers of bugs in this major release has been astounding.  The latest issue that Apple has addressed is a multitasking bug that became exacerbated by the release of iOS 13.2 on October 26th. While some people had experienced some multitasking oddities with all iOS 13.x releases, iOS 13.2 truly brought the problem to the masses. In a nutshell, multitasking -- as iPhone and iPad users have come to know it over the years -- was practically non-existent. Users could be working on an email, answer a phone call, then go... Read more...
Apple's 2019 family of smartphone consists of the iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max. The new family represented yet another yearly refresh with a heavy emphasis placed on the cameras and battery life. However, the 2020 iPhone lineup is expected to be the most significant step forward for the family since... perhaps, the iPhone X. According to a new report from the Japanese publication Nikkei, the 2020 iPhones will be powered by the [obvious] A14 Bionic SoC. This will allegedly be the first Apple SoC to use TSMC's new 5nm process tech. The shift to 5nm should allow for even greater increases in performance, while reducing power consumption compared to the 7nm A13... Read more...
Security researchers discovered 17 malicious iPhone apps that managed to get through Apple's review process and land on the App Store. The infected apps, which have now been removed, had been infected with clicker trojan malware "designed to carry out ad fraud related tasks in the background," such as clicking on links and continuously opening webpages. "The objective of most clicker trojans is to generate revenue for the attacker on a pay-per-click basis by inflating website traffic. They can also be used to drain the budget of a competitor by artificially inflating the balance owed to the ad network," researchers at security firm Wandera state in a blog post. All of the apps came from the same... Read more...
Some fans of the Pixel 4 smartphone who ordered one weren't happy to hear that Google isn't offering free original quality photo uploads to Google Photos. Free original quality uploads had been an offering in the past as a much-appreciated perk for Pixel device owners. A redditor has furthered inflamed those tensions, pointing out that iPhone users have been enjoying unlimited original quality backups on Google Photos for free. Google says that it is a bug, and that it will be addressed. iPhone users get free original quality backups because the iPhone itself saves its images in HEIC format according to Android Police. The format provides a smaller file size than a compressed JPEG that most... Read more...
Apple has a new patent application that has turned up at the USPTO that outlines a new system of haptic feedback that aims to make on-screen keyboards feel more like the real thing. The haptic tech described in the patent is called "Static Pattern Electrostatic Haptic Electrodes," and the goal is to to provide more tactile feedback like a computer keyboard. The patent relates to haptics that use multiple static pattern electrostatic haptic electrodes that are driven by different voltages, which allows a range of different haptic outputs. The static pattern electrostatic haptic electrode could include conductive material and voids inside the conductive material that allows the material to be the... Read more...
In a perfect world, data caps would not exist—we would all have access to a wide open spigot of data at a low price. Here in the real world, however, it is not that simple—unlimited data plans, while widely available, can be more than some willing users are willing to pay. Hence why there is a new (sort of) Low Data Mode for iPhone handsets. The new Low Data Mode is one of the features of iOS 13, which launched alongside Apple's latest iPhone 11 series. If you have not yet been automatically updated, you can force the issue by heading to Settings > General > Software Update. That is also where you can toggle automatic updates on or off. What's neat about the Low Data Mode is... Read more...
Smartphone users have become used to smartphones that only offer marginal performance gains over past models with each new release. Apple's new iPhone 11 family has better cameras, vastly better battery life, and the promise of better performance over their predecessors. In a new video posted to YouTube, the iPhone 11 Pro is being pitted against the iPhone XS and iPhone X to see how the processor inside each of the three generations performs compared to the other generations. EverythingApplePro puts all three of the devices on the screen at the same time with the generation marked in the bottom left corner in the early tests. The iPhone X is notably slower on games like Fortnite, lagging well... Read more...
Apple takes its time bringing entering new product categories, and that appears to be the case with its upcoming AR headset. The clearest evidence ever that Apple has an AR headset in testing has surfaced from code hidden inside iOS 13. IOS developer Steve Troughton-Smith has found a readme file tucked inside iOS 13 that explains to Apple employees how to run augmented reality apps on the iPhone when a headset isn't available. The developer says that the code suggests the rendering might be handled on the iPhone itself and will work with an additional gamepad/motion control device. With the readme file telling workers how to test AR apps without having the AR headset, and no mention of AR tech... Read more...
Apple had its big keynote address for this year, and the highly anticipated iPhone 11 family has been revealed. As expected, there are three new models that have been announced, which are successors for the iPhone XR, iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max respectively. Meet the iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max. Let's start off with the iPhone 11, which is the least inexpensive of the bunch. It features a 6.1-inch LCD (like its predecessor) along with a revised (and faster) version of Face ID. The screen resolution remains the same (1792x868), but Apple has made some slight modifications to the panel to make improve colors and overall performance. Inside, Apple is using a new A13 Bionic SoC,... Read more...
A scathing report by China Labor Watch (CLW) outlines an alleged "string of labor rights violations" at Foxconn (otherwise known as Hon Hai Precision) in relation to the production of Apple iPhone handsets. The disconcerting report arrives just as Apple is getting ready to launch a new line of flagship iPhone devices. CLW's latest report focuses on the Zhengzhou Foxconn factory in China. This location has been dubbed "iPhone City" because it the largest iPhone factory in the world, spanning 1.4 million square meters. Over half of all iPhones sold worldwide come from there. "Our recent findings on working conditions at Zhengzhou Foxconn highlights several issues which are in violation of Apple’s... Read more...
Last week we reported on multiple flaws in iOS that were found by Google's Project Zero team that primarily affected iPhones. There were a total of 14 vulnerabilities uncovered, which included exploits for the Safari web browser and the iOS kernel itself. Amazingly, perpetrators of these exploits were able to perform "drive by" attacks to pilfer photos, user contact details, and app data from users that simply visited malicious websites with their iPhones. While Apple was quick to fix the vulnerabilities when it was alerted about them, we didn't learn last week who had actually carried out the attacks using these previously unknown vectors. Now, thanks to reporting from TechCrunch,... Read more...
A member of Google's Project Zero security team has written a lengthy blog post detailing a series of iOS exploit chains discovered in the wild. According to Project Zero's findings, a hacking group underwent a "sustained effort to hack the users of iPhones" for a period of at least two years. This was accomplished through hacked websites. Project Zero member Ian Beer says Google's Threat Analysis Group (TAG) discovered a small collection of hacked websites that were used in "indiscriminate water hole attacks" against iPhone users, by way of a zero-day attack. "Simply visiting the hacked site was enough for the exploit server to attack your device, and if it was successful, install a monitoring... Read more...
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