Taking a look back at another week of news and headlines from Cupertino, this week’s Apple Loop includes the new iPhone SE, Apple’s latest privacy problem, new Macs are coming, the mystery MacBook Pro launch, breakthrough medical apps, how Apple hurt Facebook, and saying goodbye to a legendary iPhone.
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 my weekly digest of Android news here on Forbes).
Your Next New iPhone SE Is Nearly Here
While the iPhone 14 family will offer a full refresh on Apple’s smartphone line-up, these won’t be the only new iPhones this year. The third generation of Apple’s entry-level iPhone SE family is expected to launch during the upcoming March event, and production is reportedly under way:
“The affordable iPhone SE 3rd Gen is likely going to be 5G-enabled. However, it is expected to have the same design and build of the previous-gen model. Along with the iPhone SE, we could be seeing a 5G iPad Air during this event — if the leak ends up being accurate.”
MORE FOR YOU
Apple’s User Privacy Problem
Following last week’s news from ZDNet that Apple has been storing user voice data without permission, Apple has clarified its stance, noting the bug was addressed in iOS 15.2 not 15.4. Nevertheless the situation is still worrying.
“While the company is to be credited for acting more quickly than originally thought (two months after user audio was wrongly shared with Apple, rather than five months) it does nothing to absolve the company’s lack of transparency around this issue. Upon learning that user audio was being recorded without permission and set to Apple servers, the only acceptable action was for Apple to be transparent and communicate to users what had happened.
“Bug or not, the error represented a clear breach of user privacy. As it stands, on multiple occasions Apple has now had access to audio records of its users without their permission (details below) and every time Apple had to be caught out before admitting what had happened. “
New Macs Are Coming, But Which Ones?
Thanks to some timely (and required) submissions for certification, Apple has tacitly confirmed three new macs are on their way. Beyond the model numbers we’re left with speculation and intuition on what to expect, but there are two obvious gaps that need filling before the end of the year:
“Last year saw the iMac launch at the spring event, albeit this was in mid-April, rather than the more traditional March slot. Seeing the iMac Pro one year later certainly fits in with Apple’s love of calendar-based regularity. The Mac Pro is also waiting on the move to the ARM-based chipset. With the last release in December 2019 this machine could be waiting until the end of the year, or both the ‘Pro’ machines could come out now, as the final M1 family members ahead of the introduction of the M2 at WWDC in June for a Q4 launch.”
What About An M2 MacBook Pro?
What if it was a MacBook Pro? There’s certainly some discussion in the air, with the focus on a potential debut of the m2 chip in an entry-level MacBook Pro. This may be a case of Apple making a decision much closer to the time, hence the mixed signals online. No doubt some subtle expectation management will take place over the next few weeks so nobody is disappointed about the final choice on timing:
“Based on the new information seen by MacRumors, the upcoming 13-inch MacBook Pro retains the same design as the current version, including the Touch Bar, but unlike the 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models, it will not have a notch or a ProMotion display, contrary to some rumors.
“If so, that means the headline difference in the new entry-level MacBook Pro model will be the new M2 chip, which features the same number of CPU cores as the M1 processor , up to 10 graphics cores, and improved performance.”
First Diabetic Pump Control App Cleared By FDA
The American FDA regulator has approved Tandem Diabetes Care’s mobile app that will allow diabetics to control their own insulin pumps through their smartphone. This will be the first app given approval to provide this service. Previously, any system required the delivery to be controlled by the pump directly. Now the app can be used:
“With this update, pump users will be able to program or cancel bolus doses of insulin, which are taken at mealtimes and are crucial in keeping blood glucose levels under control. “Giving a meal bolus is now the most common reason a person interacts with their pump, and the ability to do so using a smartphone app offers a convenient and discrete solution,” John Sheridan, president and CEO of Tandem Diabetes Care, said in a statement. The change could be a big improvement for people who prefer not to have pumps out in public settings or attach them to undergarments like bras.”
How Apple Hurt Facebook And Meta
How much has Apple’s moves to restrict user tracking in on-device advertising impacted Facebook and parent company Meta? The headline figures is $10 billion in revenue, but that announcement last week saw $250 billion knocked off the company’s value. What happens next? Peter Kafka dives deep to find out:
“The short version, as COO Sheryl Sandberg told investors last week: Facebook’s ad targeting became less accurate because it now knows less about its users. Which means Facebook advertisers have to spend more money in the hope of reaching people on iPhones — and that Facebook advertisers, who had been used to measuring the effectiveness of their campaigns down to the penny, now have to make much-less-informed guesses about whether their ad dollars are working”
It’s time to say goodbye to the iPhone 6 Plus, as Apple moves its first “big” iPhone to the vintage product list; which effectively means that repairs may still be possible, but only if parts are in stock. It’s a quiet ramp-down to the obsolete list and the death knell of support, but it is a graceful ramp-down.
“The vintage products list features devices that Apple stopped distributing for sale more than five years ago and less than seven years ago. Apple provides service and parts for vintage devices for up to 7 years, or as required by law, but repairs are subject to parts availability. Apple stopped supporting the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus with software updates back in 2019 with the launch of iOS 13.”
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.