Apple Archive

So Long Apple – Thanks For Nothing

After nearly three years, this will be the last post on AlliOSNews.  This weekend I experienced customer service so shockingly poor – so utterly unacceptable that I can no longer support Apple.  It is disappointing but having spent the last two days in a red mist of anger, it is time to kiss them off pretty much the same way they have kissed me off.

It started with me waking up and checking my email.  at 4:44 AM someone changed my password on my iCloud account.  Now I have enabled two-factor authentication on the account and, logic dictates, that even if someone managed to get the password, they would have to have my other information (recovery key, the physical devices in hand) to get into my account.  Clearly that was not the case.

With a bit of a panic I went to AppleID.Apple.Com to find out what was going on.  I tried to log in and failed and then was prompted for my recovery key.  I entered that assuming all was well.  No.  The Recovery Key was wrong.  Now I’m in a formal panic.  I call Apple and I’m informed that my account has been compromised.  How was this even possible with two-factor authentication?

I spend the next few hours trying to sort out what’s going on and speaking to Apple all the time.  The nutshell of it was that my account had been compromised, the Recovery Key had been changed, and the account was fully locked and encrypted.  There was no way to get any of my data back.

Now I know this is the case with data.  I get it.  I signed up for two-factor Authentication for a reason.  To prevent this very scenario.  But clearly there is something not right with how Apple has implemented it.  Somehow, some way, my account was compromised despite it being enabled.  I was okay with losing the data.  To be honest, aside from some contacts, most of what I have was in other services.  Something in the back of my head told me not to fully trust iCloud.

Here is the really bad part of the story.  Actually, it’s the shitty part of the story.

Because my Apple ID was tied to my iPhone, iPad Air and iPad Mini, they are, in Apple’s words, bricked.  Without being able to get into the account, these devices are tied to my Apple ID (which is now completely locked down and unavailable to anyone including, apparently, Apple) and cannot be tied to any other Apple ID.  The Apple support persons exact – and completely careless comment to me:  “Yeah, you are pretty much cooked”.

So let me get this straight Apple.  I’ve spent thousands of dollars with you.  I’ve done what you have suggested (or forced me to do) by tying my devices to my Apple ID.  I’ve then enabled two-factor authentication – which you say can’t be broken – and because of your issue, I am no longer able to use any of my devices?  Thanks for that.

The only way I’m told by Apple to get all of my devices back and register them with another Apple ID is to show proof of purchase.  Despite the fact that the Apple support people could see the devices I had and I repeatedly told them I had them in my possession, they said because of security they would have to have proof of purchase and engineering may decide to let me back into them in 6-8 weeks.

Awesome.  Pure Awesome.

The data is one thing but to render my devices useless is unacceptable.  This was not my fault Apple.  Even if it was, your poor security is pretty draconian when it comes to paying for a mistake.  Seriously – I forget my password and you lock me out of everything?  Including my iPad and Mac?  Wow.  Just. Wow.

The moral of the story is two fold peeps.  First, if you are going to use Apple products I would not enable two-factor authentication.  It’s clearly broken and clearly able to be compromised.  Run the risk of single-factor and come up with a really, really, really good password and hope for the best.

Second, if you can avoid Apple products, do it.  Clearly no matter how much you spend with them they do not care.  Their lack of a back door to prevent this kind of thing from happening is simply unacceptable.  Their poor security implementation has rendered my devices constantly nagging me for a password I can never hope to know or unable to activate.

As for me, I’m composing this on my re-formatted MacBook Pro running Windows 8.  Next to me is my Lumia 1320 Windows Phone.  My data is safe and secure in services other than iCloud.  And on the book case in front of me sits an effectively dead iPad Air, iPhone 5S and iPad Mini.

I’ll let you know if engineering decides to be nice and let me have my devices again.  Regardless of the outcome, I’m done with Apple.

So long.

Apple Event Set for October 16

The invitations are out and the next big Apple event is only a few days away.  On October 16 Apple will be holding their second major event in as many months with the expected release of a new lineup of iPad offerings as well as a refreshed Mac lineup.  What exactly we will see will be a mystery until the event but these will be the headlines of what is expected.

The event, which will be held at the Cupertino company’s campus, will also be live streamed for those who have Macs and Apple TV.   Here is to hoping it goes better than the iPhone 6 live stream! :-D

iOS 8 Adoption Rate Nears 50%

On the Apple Developer site, the company has published statistics showing that the iOS 8 adoption rate is at 46%, nearly matching the pace of the iOS 7 adoption rate last year.  The statistics come to Apple via the App Store where the device’s iOS version is identified upon connection.  The iOS 8 adoption rate is critical for Apple as it assures them that the majority of iOS users are running the latest version but also helps developers know that support for iOS 8 is critically important.

Just prior to the iOS 8 launch, iOS 7 enjoyed an adoption rate of 90% and since the release has dropped down to 49%.  Only 5% of all iOS users are using a version older than iOS 7.

10 Million iPhone 6 Sold in The First Weekend

If there was any doubt in anyone’s mind about the demand for a larger display iPhone, this weekend should have removed all doubt.  Apple announced yesterday that in the first weekend of sales the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus had sold a stunning 10 million units globally.  This obliterated the 4 million iPhone 5s’ sold last year in the first weekend, a number that was impressive at the time but was what the iPhone 6 sold in pre-orders alone.

Apple has sold over 10 million new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus models, a new record, just three days after the launch on September 19. The iPhones are available in the US, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Puerto Rico, Singapore, and the UK and will be available in more than 20 additional countries on September 26. The new phones will be available in 115 countries by the end of the year. “Sales for iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus exceeded our expectations for the launch weekend, and we couldn’t be happier,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “We would like to thank all of our customers for making this our best launch ever, shattering all previous sell-through records by a large margin. While our team managed the manufacturing ramp better than ever before, we could have sold many more iPhones with greater supply and we are working hard to fill orders as quickly as possible.”

The challenge Apple has now, which always seems to be the challenge, is keeping up with demand.  If you consider that Apple single handedly disrupted the supply chain for Samsung by taking up a majority of cargo flights out of China in the weeks leading up to the launch, it is entirely likely that this trend will continue for some time.  For Samsung, who are launching the new Alpha, this is not good news.

Apple Launches Two New iPhone 6 Ads

Apple has released two new iPhone 6 ads on their YouTube site and will be coming to your television screen soon.  The two new adds highlight the larger displays of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus while the second advert takes a look at the new Health app built into iOS 8.  It is the first of what I suspect will be many iPhone 6 ads.

AppleWatch – Apple’s Riskiest Product Since Newton

On Tuesday Apple launched AppleWatch, their first player into an increasingly crowded SmartWatch field.  The AppleWatch features the Digital Crown which, along with taps and swipes of the AppleWatch face, help you navigate the device.  Apple proclaims that the Digital Crown is the most revolutionary navigation tool since the Click Wheel while Tim Cook has stated that the AppleWatch is the Apple’s most personal device to date.

Despite the standing ovation that the AppleWatch received during the keynote on Tuesday, make no mistake.  This is a risky product for Apple.  It’s not a “bet the company” risky but it is risky.  One analyst this week said it was the riskiest product since Apple launched the Newton back in 1987 and I tend to agree.  The AppleWatch, like the Newton, faces a fundamental question from consumers:  Do I really need this?

Just A Random Post on an Apple Centric Blog

It’s Sunday night here in the UK.  It’s a cool 21c (roughly 70F) this evening as I enjoy a very nice French Merlot with windows open and a cool breeze in my office.

As I do every Sunday evening, I’m surveying new apps & new news that came in from the United States over the weekend concerning all things in the world of Apple.  Monday’s are usually slow when it comes to news anyway because most of us who blog about Apple as a hobby (raises hand) or professionally generally take the weekend off – publicly anyway.  Undoutedly most of us have been working hard on putting the finishing touches on our iOS 8 reviews, iPhone 6 preliminary views posts and our thoughts on OS X Yosemite this particularly weekend. I know I have been doing just that.  Then there is the iWatch… or iWear or whatever it is going to be called.  Yeah, that’s one that has been fun to ponder these past few days too.

Which gets to the point of this post.  There is no point.  Seriously.  This is random ramblings of a guy with a blog because there is absolutely nothing to report on in the world of Appleville right now.  It all happens Tuesday. Sure I could update you on the latest app update or maybe post a review or maybe even a How To.  Truth is, I can’t be bothered.  Why?  Because you won’t read it.

Seriously.  If you have made it this far in this post I’m really impressed!

What We Expect From Apple on 9.9.2014

Editors Note:  This post will remain at the top of AlliOSNews through Tuesday, 9 September.  Newer news items will be below.  Clinton’s Comments are in Black while Tricia’s comments are in Red

Tuesday, 9 September 2014 could be one of the most important days in the history of Apple.  I appreciate that, as an opening line for a post, that may sound hyperbolic or drama-ish, but I stand by it.

SHINY TOYS! SHINY TOYS!

Apple is expected to announce a series of products, software and solutions that could set their course for the next several years.  It is also an opportunity to do what Apple does best:  Change a market that nobody expected.  They have done it in the past three times:  iPod (changed how we consume music), iPhone (changed how we use and expect a smartphone to work) and iPad (changed how we casually compute and created a new category).  Will they do it again with wearables?

There is a lot of what we expect from Apple in this event.  Some of it we know (or think we do) while some of it is still speculation.  And while we at AlliOSNews try to stay above the rumour mill fray, we do pay attention and read the tea leaves just like you and everyone else.  To that end, Clinton & Tricia have put together a list of things we expect to see next Tuesday.  As we have done in the past, we give what we think is a percentage of us seeing that particular product or service based.  Sometimes we are right, some times we are not so right.  But it’s fun to speculate!

To the point of Clinton’s click-bait intro above, there is good reason to expect something big. Apple is known for meticulously planning every aspect of their announcements; this includes location. Tuesday’s event will take place at the Flint Center for the Performing Arts in Apple’s hometown of Cupertino, California as opposed to the Yerba Buena Center in San Francisco. Announcements previously coming out of this more intimate venue include the original Mac (1984), Bondi Blue iMac (1998) and is the location of their annual shareholders meeting. To me this indicates a brand new category will debut.

iPhone 6 – Chance of Announcement:  100%

Make no mistake, this is an iPhone event.  And it is a huge iPhone event literally and figuratively.  Apple is expected, like last year, to announce two different iPhone 6 models.  There is expected to be the 4.7″ variety and the phablet 5.5″ version.  Both will be running iOS 8 of course and all indications are that both will support NFC for a new wallet purchasing system on the devices.  Both will be powered by the Apple A8 processor, have the M8 updated motion processor and the 5.5″ will have a sapphire front while the 4.7″ will have Gorilla Glass 3.  If the mockups we have seen are any indication, look for a thinner, rounded almost iPad Air-like look to the new iPhone.

Frankly Apple is behind a bit when it comes to screen size.  People are wanting larger displays than 4″ and I am most certainly amongst them.  Have been carrying around the Nokia Lumia 1320 for weeks, that 6″ phablet is an absolute joy to use and the screen size is beautiful.  When I go back to my iPhone 5s, the 4″ screen looks super tiny.  Because, realistically, it is in today’s market.

The real question is around delivery dates for these devices.  All indications are that the 4.7″ iPhone 6 is ready to launch and we will probably see that within 10 days of this event.  So I would expect you to be able to pre-order within a week and delivery within two.  The 5.5″ on the other hand could be a November or even December product.  Rumours point to difficulty with the sapphire displays and Apple is behind on production.  This could prove to be problematic for Apple as I personally think the 5.5″ will be in demand immediately.

I completely agree that we will welcome two new iPhones into the shiny toy collection and I’m excited about the potential for a larger screen. There are many times I’ll switch over to my iPad because navigating certain searches on my phone screen are just too much of a pain in the tushy. However, I struggle with the need for the larger phablet – isn’t that the point of the iPad? (I will readily admit to doubting the need for an iPad mini at launch, and now really want one.)

My biggest problem with the ever-increasing screen sizes is the ever-increasing device size that comes alongside those glorious viewable screens. As a woman, I am plagued by tiny pockets (if any at all). Currently my iPhone 5 will only fit in the back pocket of some of my jeans. As someone who needs my iDevice by my side at all times as a sort of technological security blanket, it can get dangerous when I have to juggle it as part of all the other TechMom gear I’m toting. Which brings me to my next point…

Sources say the phablet (tangent – can we all take a moment to agree that phablet is a stupid name?) will have the sapphire screen to decrease the potential for a shattered screen, while the iPhone 6 standard will continue to feature Gorilla Glass. One of Apple’s key differentiators in the market continues to be their beautiful hardware in addition to ease-of-use. I would love to see sapphire screens on all devices as well as water-resistant. This would allow users to shed the case (and resulting added bulk) and proudly tout their chosen iDevice in all its naked glory.

Apple Releases iTunes 11.3.1 Podcasts Fix

Apple has quietly released a minor update to iTunes aimed at helping resolve some lingering problems with Podcasts for some users.  The new iTunes 11.3.1 update is available now for Mac through the Mac App Store (check under Updates) or you can download it from the iTunes site.  If you are a iTunes user on PC, you can use the Apple Software update app to get the latest update.

iPhone 6 Launch Event Anticipated for September 9th

The anticipation around a new iPhone launch every year is always a big news maker and this year is no exception and if anything it is bigger this year.  With anticipation around larger displays, the iPhone 6 launch event is likely going to prove to be one of the biggest news makers for Apple in the last few years.  I know I’m eager to see the new iPhone 6 but I’m not sure if I’m as excited as my partner in arms Tricia.

iMessage with Tricia on iPhone 6

iMessage with Tricia on iPhone 6

All indications, from multiple sources, are pointing out that the iPhone 6 launch date is going to be Tuesday, September 9th.  Those sources include Bloomberg which stated:

The Cupertino, California-based company is set to introduce two new models: one with a 4.7-inch screen, and another with a 5.5-inch screen, people with knowledge of the plans have said.

And not to be outdone, the Wall Street Journal is also saying September 9th is the date:

Apple is expected to hold an event to introduce its new iPhones on Sept. 9, according to a person familiar with the matter.

The timing of Apple’s announcement would fall in line with its recent track record of announcing the new phones in early- to mid-September and then starting sales a few weeks later.

These are two credible sources who, in the past, have been accurate on these types of things.  I would recommend we call circle September 9th in our diaries now.