Taking a look back at another week of news from Cupertino, this week’s Apple Loop includes an old design for the rumored iPhone 7S, more details on the iPhone 8′s OLED screen, the ongoing battery issues with the MacBook Pro, faults in the iPhone 7 camera, AirPod charging issues, secrets of the iOS engineer, top tips for new iPhone owners, and video of the new Apple Campus..
Apple Loop is here to remind you of a few of the very many discussions that have happened around Apple over the last seven days (and you can read our weekly digest of Android news here on Forbes).
An Old Design For iPhone 7S?
There was a time when Apple would update the iPhone design every year. Then it was every two years with the introduction of the S models. Now it looks like the presumptively named iPhone 8 may have a new design, but will have some familiar looking competition pushing out a four-year old design… here comes the not very different iPhone 7S. Forbes’ Gordon Kelly reports:
….the 2017 iPhones could be very disappointing indeed. Citing a “Taiwan supplier”, the site [Mac Otakara] says that instead of the so-called ‘iPhone 8’ Apple will instead follow tradition and simply release an iPhone 7S and iPhone 7S Plus which will be virtually identical to the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus.
If correct, this would be the fourth successive generation where Apple has stuck with the same design and the move would likely anger fans as iPhone rivals continue to cut down bezel sizes to fit larger displays into physically smaller phones.
There is a positive side if this is the case… more on that here on Forbes.
Apple iPhone 7 (image: Ewan Spence)
All About The iPhone 8 Screen
The current consensus at the moment is that Apple will update the current portfolio of devices to the 7S family and a new handset design will come in at the top end, which will be the iPhone 8. Chris Smith reports on an order for Samsung OLED screens to be fitted to the new iPhone.
According to unnamed sources quoted by Digitimes, Samsung will be the exclusive provider of OLED displays for a 5.8-inch iPhone next year. That’s likely the iPhone 8, and if the size sounds confusing given that some sources expect the phone to have a 5-inch screen, that’s because we may be looking at the total diagonal size of the display, including the curved edges. Even with a 5.8-inch screen, the iPhone 8 might be more compact than the current iPhone 7 Plus model, given that it’s supposed to have curved edges and a bezel-free, buttonless design.
Digitimes notes that Apple will have three iPhones out in the second-half of 2017, including 4.7-inch, 5.5-inch, and 5.8-inch models. The first two will still employ LCD screens just like every other iPhone before them.
More at BGR.
MacBook Pro Issues Continue
Apple’s issues with the MacBook Pro battery continued this week. Although many have questioned its methodology Consumer Report is standing by its choice to not recommend the laptops, polls of users are showing significant numbers of users experiencing battery life under five hours, and there’s very little guidance from Apple beyond ‘we are working to understand their results. It’s not been a great week at all.
Apple relies heavily on testing and recommendations from third-party organisations to market its hardware. Consumer Report’s MacBook recommendations (along with those from JD Power) have featured heavily in the past. If these organisations start to pull away from Apple, then another approach will need to be found.
Closer to home pushing the subtle idea of ten hours of battery life (sorry, ‘up to’ ten hours of battery life) when the consensus seems to be around five to seven hours) is a touch disingenuous. How the software and hardware work together to maximise battery life is a key part of the experience. At the moment the evidence points to something being ‘not quite right’ inside the MacBook Pro.
More thoughts here.
Macbook, March 2015 (image: Apple PR)
Faulty iPhone 7 Camera Units
Does the new iPhone 7 have a problem with the camera? Reports are coming in of some camera units having to be repaired or replaced by Apple because of blank image previews. Forbes’ Paul Monckton investigates:
‘I opened up the camera app only to be met with a black image preview, sometimes I can get an image however it’s either tinted green or purple and was once accompanied by a screen stating ‘Emergency iPhone needs to cool down’ when the handset wasn’t even slightly warm.’
More details here on the issue.
AirPods Have Some Issues
They arrived months behind schedule, stocks are limited, and some Apple Stores are not showing availability until February, but Apple’s AirPods are still ‘a runaway success’ according to CEO Tim Cook. Back in the real world, users are finding that some AirPod charging cases are not holding charge. Mitchel Broussard reports:
The exact scope of the affected AirPods user base is unclear. Some users are speculating that the problem could be an initial charge cycle hiccup that irons itself out over time, but a few owners that have had the AirPods since day one are still posting about battery drainage issues with the charging case today. On the other hand, there are many other users who have reported normal experiences with the case and its advertised 24 hours of battery life. Apple hasn’t commented on any of the reports.
More at MacRumors, although it’s worth noting that iFixit’s teardown of the unit last week revealed some interesting workmanship details that may or may not be relevant here.
Exploded iPhone 7 (image: IHS Markit)
Engineering The iPhone
Terry Lambert is a former Apple employee who worked on the OSX kernel and had a direct impact on software inside the early iPhones. He’s been answering questions on Quora about his work on Apple’s technology. Mike Wutherless sums up some points on Apple Insider:
In the Quora post asking about the original iPhone, Lambert claims that he wrote 6% of the MacOS Kernel as measured by lines of code, or about 100,000 lines a year, much of which was repurposed for the iOS kernel.
Calling the original effort “Project Purple,” Lambert said that he was brought in “late in the game” and mostly for debugging purposes. The engineer discussed not even seeing the product he was working on initially.
“I got taken into areas where there were black cloths everywhere,” said Lambert. “I only got to see the machine doing the remote debugging, not the target —but it was obviously an ARM based system.”
More on Apple Insider and Quora.
My Top Tips For New Apple Users
Just int time for those of you who picked up a new Apple smartphone over the festive period is my collection of top tips for new iPhone users. From software updates and apps, to cloud services and extended warranties, here’s what you should consider:
For some these phone be ‘same again with a slightly bigger number’ as the familiar wins out. For others the new smartphone will be their introduction into a new ecosystem. The last few years have seen Apple’s iPhone break sales records, and no doubt the iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus and a few older models have been gifted and a legion of new users are being welcomed into the world of iOS with their festive ‘phone.
Read all of the tips here on Forbes.
YouTuber Matthew Roberts sent his 4K drone over Apple’s Campus 2 grounds to see how construction is proceeding of Apple’s new HQ, research labs, theatre and facilities. The video (above) shows the physical ring structure, the extensive solar paneling and the landscaping work across the campus.
Apple Loop brings you seven days worth of highlights every weekend here on Forbes. Don’t forget to follow me so you don’t miss any coverage in the future. Last week’s Apple Loop can be read here, or this week’s edition of Loop’s sister column, Android Circuit, is also available on Forbes.
Follow me on Facebook. Find more of myworkat ewanspence.co.uk, onTwitter, and Linked In.You shouldsubscribe tomyweeklynewsletter of ‘Trivial Posts’.
This article passed through the Full-Text RSS service – if this is your content and you’re reading it on someone else’s site, please read the FAQ at fivefilters.org/content-only/faq.php#publishers.
Recommended article: The Guardian’s Summary of Julian Assange’s Interview Went Viral and Was Completely False.
Share and Enjoy