Apple Fights Proposed Right to Repair Legislation With Warnings of Consumer Harm

Apple is fighting Right to Repair initiatives in California by telling lawmakers that consumers could hurt themselves attempting to repair their own devices, reports Motherboard.

Over the course of the last few weeks, an Apple representative and a lobbyist for ComTIA, a trade organization representing major tech companies, have been meeting with legislators in California with the aim of killing right to repair legislation that would make it easier for customers to repair their own electronics.

Image via iFixit

The pair have met with members of the Privacy and Consumer Protection Committee, which held a meeting on a right to repair bill this afternoon. Apple told lawmakers that customers could potentially injure themselves by accidentally puncturing the batteries in Apple devices during attempted repairs.
The lobbyists brought an iPhone to the meetings and showed lawmakers and their legislative aides the internal components of the phone. The lobbyists said that if improperly disassembled, consumers who are trying to fix their own iPhone could hurt themselves by puncturing the lithium-ion battery, the sources, who Motherboard is not naming because they were not authorized to speak to the media, said.
Apple has continually lobbied against right to repair legislation across multiple states. Such legislation would require companies like Apple to provide repair parts, tools, and make repair information available to the public.

Apple devices are notoriously hard to repair given the small, proprietary components and large amounts of adhesive, with repair site iFixit giving Apple products almost universally low repair scores.

Still, the difficult repairability has not stopped thousands of small independent repair shops from making iPhone repairs. Nathan Proctor, director of consumer rights group US PIRG's right to repair campaign, told Motherboard that suggesting there are safety concerns related to spare parts and manuals is "patently absurd."

"We know that all across the country, millions of people are doing this for themselves. Millions more are taking devices to independent repair technicians," he said.


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Facebook Getting Refreshed Look on Desktop and Mobile

Facebook's developer conference, F8, took place today, and Facebook announced a number of changes coming to the social network in the future.

Facebook is set to gain a refreshed design, that's meant to be "simpler, faster, and more immersive," situating Facebook Groups more prominently. The new design will "make it easy" for people to transition from public spaces to more private ones.


There's a redesigned Groups tab to make it easier to find content from your groups, along with a new discovery tool for recommendations for new groups. Content from groups may show up more prominently in the News Feed, and content from the News Feed will be able to be shared directly with groups.

New features for specific types of groups are coming, such as an option to post without a name in a health support group and an option for employers to post job openings in job groups. Gaming groups will get a chat feature, and Buy and Sell groups are getting an option that will let people ask questions and place orders during live broadcasts.

A "Meet New Friends" feature is coming to help people start friendships with new people from shared communities like a school, workplace, or city, and this summer, a new Events tab is coming to allow users to see what's happening around them.

Facebook's redesign is rolling out on mobile devices starting today and will be available on the desktop site "in the next few months."

As was announced earlier today, Facebook also plans to introduce a Messenger app for macOS, a re-engineered mobile Messenger app, a feature for watching videos with friends, and a dedicated space for messaging close friends and family.

During today's event, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg also said that privacy will be more of a focus going forward. Facebook will focus on six principles as it makes site and app changes in the future: private interactions, encryption, reduced permanence for content, safety, interoperability, and secure data storage.

"Over the next few years we are going to build more of our services around these ideas," Zuckerberg said. "This isn't just about building features. We need to change a lot of the different ways that we run this company today."


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Top Wallpaper Apps for iPhone, iPad and Mac

When we share videos and images here at MacRumors, we often get a lot of questions about where our wallpapers are from, so we thought we'd offer a look at some of our favorite wallpaper app options so you can find new backgrounds for your iPhone, iPad, and even your Mac.

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  • Walli (Free) - Walli is a free wallpaper app that lets artists share photographs and artwork that can be used as your iPhone or iPad background. Walli has content organized into categories, plus there's a search tool and options for viewing recent, popular, and featured content. Walli offers all free content and displays ads in the app.


  • Unsplash (Free) - Unsplash is a community-based image sharing app that provides royalty-free photographs for you to use as wallpaper or for other purposes. It's not focused solely on wallpapers, but there's an interesting range of content and a huge number different options. There are featured categories along with a robust search tool for finding just what you're looking for. Along with an iOS app, Unsplash also has a website so you can get Mac wallpapers too.


  • Vellum Wallpapers (Free) - Vellum is an app that aggregates wallpapers from a variety of sources, so it offers a good range of different wallpaper options. Some of the content overlaps with the other wallpaper apps we've mentioned, but it also has unique wallpapers you won't find elsewhere. It has a nifty blurring tool for cutting out details on a wallpaper you might want to use as a background for the Home screen, so app names and icons won't be hard to see. It's free, but you can remove ads for $1.99.


  • Atlas Wallpaper (Free) - Atlas is a unique wallpaper app that's designed to let you create a wallpaper based on a map anywhere in the world. You can search for a specific location, see a general overview map, and then customize the color palette to create unique wallpaper maps.

Along with the apps mentioned above, Reddit can be a great resource for new wallpaper content, specifically in the /r/wallpaper subreddit, and just a simple Google search for images can also be helpful if you're looking for something more specific.

Do you have favorite wallpaper app or resource that we didn't mention? Let us know in the comments.


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Apple Shipped an Estimated 36.4 Million iPhones Worldwide in Q1 2019, a 30% Year-Over-Year Decline

Apple shipped an estimated 36.4 million iPhones worldwide during the first calendar quarter of 2019, which corresponds to Apple's second fiscal quarter, according to new estimates shared today by IDC.

Apple's worldwide smartphone shipments were down 30.2 percent from 52.2 million iPhones shipped in the first quarter of 2018. The decline in sales led to Apple losing the number two worldwide smartphone vendor spot to Huawei. In Q1 2019, Huawei shipped an estimated 59.1 million smartphones.

Apple had a challenging first quarter as shipments dropped to 36.4 million units representing a staggering 30.2% decline from last year. The iPhone struggled to win over consumers in most major markets as competitors continue to eat away at Apple's market share. Price cuts in China throughout the quarter along with favorable trade-in deals in many markets were still not enough to encourage consumers to upgrade. Combine this with the fact that most competitors will shortly launch 5G phones and new foldable devices, the iPhone could face a difficult remainder of the year. Despite the lackluster quarter, Apple's strong installed base along with its recent agreement with Qualcomm will be viewed as the light at the end of the tunnel heading into 2020 for the Cupertino-based giant.
While Apple was the number three worldwide smartphone vendor and Huawei took the second place spot, Samsung continues to dominate the market with an estimated 71.9 million smartphones shipped during the quarter for 23.1 percent market share.

Apple, meanwhile, had 11.7 percent market share, down from 15.7 percent in the year-ago quarter, while Huawei held 19 percent market share during the quarter. Xiaomi, Vivo, and Oppo trailed after Samsung, Huawei, and Apple.


Apple was the number two smartphone vendor in Q4 2018 due to stronger holiday quarter sales, but fell behind this quarter. Huawei saw significant growth in China according to earlier numbers from Canalys, a market where Apple is struggling.
"It is becoming increasingly clear that Huawei is laser focused on growing its stature in the world of mobile devices, with smartphones being its lead horse," said Ryan Reith, program vice president with IDC's Worldwide Mobile Device Trackers. "The overall smartphone market continues to be challenged in almost all areas, yet Huawei was able to grow shipments by 50%, not only signifying a clear number two in terms of market share but also closing the gap on the market leader Samsung. This new ranking of Samsung, Huawei, and Apple is very likely what we'll see when 2019 is all said and done."
Overall smartphone shipment estimates totaled 310.8 million units in the first quarter of 2019, marking the sixth consecutive quarter of decline. Apple no longer provides a breakdown of unit sales of the iPhone, iPad, and Mac, leaving estimates as the only way to get a glimpse of how Apple product sales are faring.

Tag: IDC

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Apple Pay Coming to NYC Transit System in Early Summer

Apple CEO Tim Cook today shared some details on upcoming Apple Pay providers during Apple's earnings call covering the second fiscal quarter of 2019.

Ticketmaster is set to begin accepting Apple Pay for ticket purchases on the web in the near future, and more than 50 entertainment and sporting event venues are launching contactless tickets this year, including most NFL stadiums.


New York's MTA transit system is piloting Apple Pay on a couple of lines at the current time, and Cook says Apple Pay will roll out to the rest of the lines in "early summer," which is new information.

Cook believes the introduction of Apple Pay support for transit systems across the U.S. will bring in even more Apple Pay customers who don't currently use the payments service.

Apple Pay transaction more than doubled year over year, and Apple is on track to reach 10 billion transactions in 2019. Apple Pay is available in 30 markets, which Apple expects to expand to 40 markets by the end of the year.

Related Roundup: Apple Pay

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Apple CEO Tim Cook: We Feel Good About Resolution With Qualcomm

During today's earnings call covering the second fiscal quarter of 2019 (first calendar quarter), Apple CEO Tim Cook was asked about Apple's settlement with Qualcomm.

While Cook declined to provide color on how this will affect Apple's development plans in the future, he did say that Apple is satisfied with the resolution.

We're glad to put the litigation behind us and all the litigation around the world has been dismissed and settled. We're very happy to have a multi-year supply agreement and we're happy that we have a direct license arrangement with Qualcomm that was important for both companies. We feel good about the resolution.
Apple and Qualcomm reached a settlement in mid-April and agreed to drop all litigation in multiple countries around the world. Apple made a one-time payment to Qualcomm and inked a six-year licensing agreement to use Qualcomm's patented technologies.

The settlement also included a chipset supply agreement, and Qualcomm is expected to provide the 5G chips that Apple will need to introduce 5G connectivity in its 2020 iPhones.

While rumors have suggested Apple is going to add 5G in 2020, Apple itself has not confirmed those plans and Cook did not provide details on Apple's 5G timeline when asked. He did, however, say that Apple aims to get new technologies into products as soon as it can.
We look at a lot of things on the different technologies and try to look at and select the right time that things come together and get those into products as soon as we can.
After Apple and Qualcomm announced their settlement agreement, Intel said that it was dropping out of the smartphone modem chip market entirely, with no plans to manufacture 5G chips.


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Apple’s Wearables, Home and Accessories Category Sets New Q2 Revenue Record of $5.1 Billion

Apple CFO Luca Maestri today said that Apple's Wearables, Home, and Accessories category, which includes devices like the AirPods and the Apple Watch, set a new March quarter revenue record of $5.1 billion.

According to Maestri, AirPods demands continues to be "off the charts," while earlier in the call, Apple CEO Tim Cook said AirPods are a "cultural phenomenon."


As for Apple Watch, it continues to be the best selling smart watch in the world, with three quarters of Apple Watch sales during the quarter going to first time Apple Watch owners.

The Apple Watch saw its best quarterly results for a non-holiday quarter, and Apple's wearables business was up close to 50 percent in Q2 2019 and is now the size of a Fortune 200 company.


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Apple Sees All-Time Record Response to New iPhone Trade-In Initiatives

During today's earnings call for the second fiscal quarter of 2019 (first calendar quarter), Apple CEO Tim Cook said that Apple's iPhone trade-in efforts have been highly successful.

According to Cook, Apple saw an all-time record response to the company's trade-in promotions, and Apple saw more than four times the number of trade-ins from the year-ago quarter.


When asked which devices people are trading in, Cook said that it's "all over the place." iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 7, 7 Plus, and fewer 8 and 8 Plus models. Some customers, he says, are on a two-year upgrade cycle, some on a one-year upgrade cycle, and some on three or four year cycles.

Cook said that Apple is aiming to offer better than average trade-in values to provide "extra benefits" to iPhone users.
In our stores we offer a trade-in value that is more than the blue book of the device, for lack of a better description. And so we have topped those up to provide extra benefit to the user.
Apple in November began offering a limited-time promotion that provided up to $100 in additional credit when trading in an iPhone. The program allowed customers to buy a new iPhone XR, XS, or XS Max at a more heavily discounted price when trading in an older device.

Apple is no longer running that specific program, but the trade-in page continues to promote new iPhone pricing that's available when trading in an old iPhone and Apple's prices are better than most other trade-in programs for the iPhone.


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Apple Sees Strongest iPad Growth in Six Years in Q2 2019

Amid declining iPhone sales, Apple today said in its Q2 2019 earnings report that the iPad saw its strongest growth in six years.

Apple's iPad sales hit $4.9 billion in Q2 2019, up from $4 billion in the year-ago quarter, marking a 22 percent increase in revenue.


Apple in October 2018 introduced all new iPad Pro models that eschew the Touch ID Home button in favor of a Face ID biometric system, allowing for a larger display area.

In March, Apple added to its iPad lineup with a new $499 iPad Air option, which serves as a middle tier offering between the iPad Pro and the $329 sixth-generation iPad.

Apple also introduced a new version of the iPad mini, marking the 7.9-inch tablet's first update in several years. Both the iPad Air and the iPad mini 5 support the Apple Pencil, enabling Apple Pencil integration across Apple's entire iPad lineup.


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Apple’s Services Revenue Hits New All-Time High of $11.5 Billion in Q2 2019

Apple's services category, which includes iTunes, the App Store, the Mac App Store, Apple Music, Apple Pay, and AppleCare, has become an increasingly important revenue driver for Apple amid stagnating iPhone sales, and Apple has been focusing more than ever on its services category.

During the second fiscal quarter of 2019, Apple's services segment brought in $11.5 billion in revenue, up from the $9.9 billion services earned in the second quarter of 2018. Apple set a new all-time record for services revenue this quarter.


Apple in March announced a slew of new services that will boost services revenue even higher in the future. Apple News+, a $9.99 per month service that provides unlimited access to more than 200 magazines, has already launched, and later this year Apple is introducing Apple Arcade, Apple News+, and a new Apple Card credit card.

Apple has said that it is aiming to reach $14 billion in services revenue per quarter by 2020, and the company is well on its way to reaching that goal.


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