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It can be assumed that the Californian company would have to correct its production target for the new iPhone 13 by ten million downwards, reported the Bloomberg news agency on Tuesday, citing insiders. Apple has informed its manufacturers that supplier companies such as Broadcom and Texas Instruments have problems delivering chips.
Apple, Broadcom and Texas Instruments were initially unavailable for comment.
Apple is following up on warnings about other app stores on iPhone
In view of the plans for new EU rules, Apple is tightening the warnings of risks by opening the iPhone to app stores from other providers. Users would be exposed to more dangerous apps, and Apple could protect them less, argued the group in a 30-page paper published on Wednesday.
Apps can only be installed on the iPhone from the Group’s in-house platform. Apple points out that all apps and updates on its platform are examined by software and human checkers in order to filter out malicious applications. In addition, developers would have to adhere to Apple guidelines on data protection. With so-called sideloading, in which apps are loaded onto the iPhone from sources other than the official store, these safety precautions are no longer applicable, warns Apple.
The Digital Markets Act (DMA), which is currently being developed in the EU, plans to prescribe the opening of platforms for competing providers in order to increase competition. For digital articles and services that are sold via Apple’s platform, a fee of 15 or 30 percent is due to the group. On devices with the Google (alphabet C (ex Google)) system Android, there is a similar commission to Google for sales via the Group’s Play Store – but other app stores are also allowed on the platform. Apple opposed the EU plans as early as June.
“Sideloading via direct downloads or other app stores would undermine Apple’s protection mechanisms for security and privacy,” warned the iPhone company in its new paper. That is not in the interests of the user. Apple speaks, among other things, of fake apps that camouflaged themselves as popular applications and manipulated updates of the operating system. The group specifically refers to dangerous Android apps that are in circulation and try, for example, to obtain login information and other data. Online criminals would have more incentives to attack the iPhone if they were opened, it said.
Apple critics point out that programs from all possible sources can be loaded onto the Group’s Mac computers. Apple counters that the situation is different with smartphones because they contain much more private information. US bills for more competition in the tech industry are also targeting the business model. In the USA, however, Apple recently achieved success in defending its app system on the iPhone. A judge rejected the request by the game company Epic Games to open the platform to other app stores.
Apple is testing the potential of AirPods as a health device
Apple is looking for ways to turn the popular AirPods into a health device. These include applications to improve hearing, measure body temperature or monitor posture. This is evident from documents available to the Wall Street Journal and people familiar with the plans.
The plans are further evidence that the iPhone company has ambitions to build health and wellness functions into devices beyond the Apple Watch, where most of the company’s health applications are already available. As reported in September, Apple is also working on a technology that will help an iPhone to help diagnose depression and cognitive decline.
It is currently unclear whether Apple will develop special new hearing aid functions for the AirPods or whether the existing functions of the earphones will be marketed as hearing aid. The higher-quality AirPods Pro already offer functions to improve hearing, including the “conversation amplification” function, which was introduced last week, with the aid of which the volume and clarity of the people speaking who are in front of the person wearing the earbuds is amplified.
The envisaged additional AirPods functions are not expected for next year. They may also be discarded completely and not come onto the market, as people who are familiar with the company’s plans have said.
An Apple spokeswoman declines to comment.
Apple is already developing prototypes for the AirPods, with which the body temperature of the wearer can be measured in the ear, according to the documents viewed by the journal. The thermometer could become the second in an Apple device, provided that the temperature sensor envisaged for the 2022 version of the Apple Watch actually comes into play.
As far as the planned ergonomics function is concerned, the AirPods would lean on the motion sensors in the earbuds and warn the wearer if they should sag their shoulders. Then he could improve his posture in a targeted manner, according to the documents and a person familiar with the idea.
If the AirPods also work as a hearing aid, this could significantly increase the range of this product. Millions of people suffer from hearing loss, including many whose impairment is less severe and who cannot be treated, experts say.
New regulations from the US Food and Drug Administration, expected to be finalized next year, would allow direct sales of a new class of cheaper hearing aids to customers with mild to moderate hearing loss.
According to estimates by the Cochlear Center for Hearing and Public Health at Johns Hopkins University, around 28 million US citizens have mild hearing loss, but only 5 percent of them use a hearing aid. Another 12 million suffer from moderate hearing loss, but only 37 percent of this group have a hearing aid.
AirPods are cheaper than traditional hearing aids
Johns Hopkins audiologist Nicholas Reed thinks AirPods as an over the counter hearing aid is a potentially big change. Apple’s ubiquitous earplugs could help break the stigma of old age associated with traditional hearing aids. They would also cost far less than traditional hearing aids.
Because AirPods have insufficient battery life for a full day, they may not be suitable for everyone with hearing loss.
The AirPods dominate the global market for Bluetooth headphones and, according to estimates by market researchers at Strategy Analytics, should have generated sales of 12.8 billion dollars in 2020 – five times as much as the number 2 device, Bose.
With the built-in sensors, microphones, the amplifier and the sophisticated processor, the AirPods Pro already contain a large part of the technology that experts say is necessary to help people with mild or moderate hearing loss.
Apple shares fell 0.42 percent to $ 140.91 in trading on NASDAQ on Wednesday.
Bangalore / CUPERTINO / NEW YORK (Reuters / dpa-AFX / Dow Jones Newswires)
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