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Apple KnowledgeBase: ‘iPhone Battery and Performance’

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Alongside their letter to customers on the iPhone battery/performance controversy, Apple has released a detailed KnowledgeBase article with a technical overview of what’s going on and why:

When power is pulled from a battery with a higher level of impedance, the battery’s voltage will drop to a greater degree. Electronic components require a minimum voltage to operate. This includes the device’s internal storage, power circuits, and the battery itself. The power management system determines the capability of the battery to supply this power, and manages the loads in order to maintain operations. When the operations can no longer be supported with the full capabilities of the power management system, the system will perform a shutdown to preserve these electronic components. While this shutdown is intentional from the device perspective, it may be unexpected by the user.

I love that “may be”.

With a low battery state of charge, a higher chemical age, or colder temperatures, users are more likely to experience unexpected shutdowns. In extreme cases, shutdowns can occur more frequently, thereby rendering the device unreliable or unusable. iOS 10.2.1 (Released January 2017) includes updates for previous models of iPhone to prevent them from unexpectedly shutting down. This includes a feature for iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus, and iPhone SE to dynamically manage the instantaneous performance peaks, only when needed, to prevent the device from unexpectedly shutting down. This capability was also extended to iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus with iOS 11.2, and we will continue improving our power management feature in the future. This feature’s only intent is to prevent unexpected shutdowns so that the iPhone can still be used.

If you have an eligible iPhone (iPhone 6 or later), Apple’s upcoming $29 replacement program might be some of the best money you can spend. But again, if you have an iPhone that is really slow all the time, there’s a good chance there’s something wrong with it other than (or in addition to) the battery. A wipe and restore won’t cost you anything but some time, and seems to solve many “slow iPhone” problems.

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jheiss
23 days ago
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I did a wipe and restore last weekend and it fixed most of the slowness I had experienced with my 6S since upgrading to iOS 11. I'm disappointed that Apple hasn't figured out a better way to identify and solve whatever problem is behind that, but glad that my 6S is back to being a usable device. Now hopefully I can wait for the second generation of the iPhone X and Face ID. An iPhone XS sounds like a good next phone for me.
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Trump Administration Gives CDC a List of Forbidden Words

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Lena H. Sun and Juliet Eilperin, reporting for The Washington Post:

The Trump administration is prohibiting officials at the nation’s top public health agency from using a list of seven words or phrases — including “fetus” and “transgender” — in any official documents being prepared for next year’s budget.

Policy analysts at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta were told of the list of forbidden words at a meeting Thursday with senior CDC officials who oversee the budget, according to an analyst who took part in the 90-minute briefing. The forbidden words are “vulnerable,” “entitlement,” “diversity,” “transgender,” “fetus,” “evidence-based” and “science-based.”

In some instances, the analysts were given alternative phrases. Instead of “science-based” or “evidence-based,” the suggested phrase is “CDC bases its recommendations on science in consideration with community standards and wishes,” the person said. In other cases, no replacement words were immediately offered.

That evidence and science are dirty words to these shitheads tells you everything you need to know about them. This is pre-Enlightenment bullshit. 300 years later and it’s still a fight to argue that reason, science, and tolerance should guide us. I said it a year ago and it stands today: Trump voters are ignoramuses, bigots, and/or fools.

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jheiss
35 days ago
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The accounts I've read suggest that this was actually a well intentioned attempt to eliminate words from the CDC budget that would attract negative attention from shitheads in Congress. Stupid that this is necessary? Yes. But that the CDC and or HHS were attempting to keep these things in the budget even if they had to hide things a bit strikes me as actually a good sign. (Trump is still a shithead.)
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davelevy
36 days ago
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Seriously? The removal of science and evidence from the lexicon of the CDC does not bode well. I don't think that Gruber calling Trump voter ignoramuses, bigots and/or fools is fair, but it is fair to say that whoever wrote these guidelines is an ignoramus, bigot and a fool.
ÜT: 41.995898,-72.5841

More Face ID FUD, This Time From Reuters

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Stephen Nellis, reporting for Reuters under the headline “App Developer Access to iPhone X Face Data Spooks Some Privacy Experts”:

Apple Inc won accolades from privacy experts in September for assuring that facial data used to unlock its new iPhone X would be securely stored on the phone itself.

But Apple’s privacy promises do not extend to the thousands of app developers who will gain access to facial data in order to build entertainment features for iPhone X customers, such as pinning a three-dimensional mask to their face for a selfie or letting a video game character mirror the player’s real-world facial expressions.

Apple allows developers to take certain facial data off the phone as long as they agree to seek customer permission and not sell the data to third parties, among other terms in a contract seen by Reuters.

This is dangerously misleading FUD. I say “dangerous” because this is the sort of story that could lead people to not set up Face ID, leaving their iPhones less secure and less useful.

There is no way, opt-in or otherwise, for third-party apps to access Face ID data. Face ID data is stored on the iPhone X’s secure enclave — even the OS itself can’t read it.

What third-party apps do have access to, if granted permission, is the front-facing camera with the TrueDepth sensor. That’s it. Apps have access to a front-facing camera that is better than previous front-facing cameras because it has 3D depth mapping. An app (like Snapchat or Instagram) can use this to implement augmented reality features like putting a mask or fake mustache on your face, but that has nothing to do with Face ID. I don’t think this is any more privacy invasive than what these apps are already doing with your iPhone camera — it’s just more accurate spatially for AR effects.

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jheiss
79 days ago
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They don't have access to they Face ID data, but they do have access to a high resolution 3D scan of my face. That's supposed to make me feel better? Maybe it's not enough data to produce a replica that can fool Face ID, but it's certainly a big step in that direction.
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Apple Announces iPhone X Availability

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Apple Newsroom:

iPhone X, the future of the smartphone, featuring a revolutionary new design with a stunning all-screen display, wireless charging and an incredible rear camera with dual optical image stabilization, will be available to customers for pre-order on Friday, October 27 at 12:01 a.m. PDT on apple.com and the Apple Store app.

iPhone X will be available in more than 55 countries and territories, and in Apple Stores beginning Friday, November 3 at 8:00 a.m. local time. Stores will have iPhone X available for walk-in customers, who are encouraged to arrive early.

“Encouraged to arrive early” — yeah, like maybe today.

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jheiss
89 days ago
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iOS 11 has made my iPhone 6S unpleasantly slow. I'm waiting to check out an iPhone X in person before deciding whether to replace the 6S with an 8 or an X.
gazuga
89 days ago
You might be waiting until early next year then.
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Cast Iron Pan

6 Comments and 17 Shares
If you want to evenly space them, it's easiest to alternate between the Arctic and Antarctic. Some people just go to the Arctic twice, near the equinoxes so the visits are almost 6 months apart, but it's not the same.
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jheiss
93 days ago
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If soap is destroying your "seasoning" then you don't actually have seasoning.
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5 public comments
daanzu_alt_text_bot
71 days ago
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If you want to evenly space them, it's easiest to alternate between the Arctic and Antarctic. Some people just go to the Arctic twice, near the equinoxes so the visits are almost 6 months apart, but it's not the same.
emdot
73 days ago
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We're not worthy.
San Luis Obispo, CA
sulrich
90 days ago
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guilty.
ManBehindThePlan
93 days ago
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The obsession of cast iron care is laughable, considering that the pioneers rode with them over the Rockies. Of course, they actually used them, so the patina was always kept.
chrisamico
93 days ago
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Sometimes XKCD hits close to home.
Boston, MA

The Case for Apple to Finally Just Make a TV

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Nilay Patel:

One of my biggest issues with the new Apple TV 4K is that it doesn’t automatically switch the mode your TV is in to match the content. It’s one of the biggest and longest-standing issues in the living room: you want to run the TV display at a refresh rate of 24Hz when you watch 24fps movies, but animating a user interface at 24Hz looks like garbage. Apple and others deal with this issue by running everything at 60Hz, but that creates visual issues for 24fps movies — kind of silly because you buy all this stuff to watch movies, not menu animations. There are endless forum threads about adjusting TV settings to handle the motion problems that come with playing 24fps video at 60Hz.

At the same time, Apple recently introduced the ProMotion display on the iPad Pro, which dynamically varies the refresh rate of the LCD panel to match the content being displayed. When you watch a movie, it slows down to 24Hz to match the 24fps frame rate of most movies, and when you’re scrolling around a web page or playing a game, it can ramp up to 120Hz for maximum smoothness.

So, what if Apple made a TV with ProMotion that dynamically adjusted the refresh rate for the content being displayed, just like the iPad Pro? It would run at 120Hz on the homescreen and in games, slow down to 24Hz to display movies and TV perfectly, and ramp up again when you hit the home or Siri button to bring up the interface again. And live sports apps like NFL Sunday Ticket and MLB At Bat could run at 60Hz for smoother motion — the Xbox One Sunday Ticket app already runs at 60Hz.

Like Patel, I really don’t expect Apple to make a TV, but I sure wish they would, and he really makes a great case here. Especially the fact that previously, the cable box was king, but today, there’s a sizable (and growing) market of cord-cutters who just want to use streaming apps.

“Apple should make a cell phone running a stripped-down version of OS X” was a longstanding pipe dream, too.

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jheiss
115 days ago
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Or just add something to the HDMI spec that lets the content device control the refresh rate of the display device?
tingham
115 days ago
Apparently "counting is hard"
duerig
115 days ago
I have yet to find an HDMI switching box that lets me toggle between two different inputs successfully. They are all 'auto-detect' and the detection fails. I suspect that under the covers the HDMI spec is a nightmare and impossible to fully implement properly.
martinbaum
115 days ago
Or just always run at 120Hz, out of which clean 60, 30, 24, etc. refreshes etc. can be drawn.
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satadru
115 days ago
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Uh, Kodi is happy to switch your tv to 24hz or whatever when it sees a video at that frame rate and your tv supports it. This feature has been there for many years.
New York, NY
apfontana
115 days ago
wtf is kodi?
mareino
115 days ago
Copying proven tech is pretty much Apple's competitive advantage post-Jobs, though.
MotherHydra
114 days ago
+1 for Kodi, I believe Plex also supports this.
gdvillarreal
114 days ago
There’s a short flicker/delay situation when you switch modes on TVs where the image goes away briefly (Kodi even lets you configure a delay where it pauses content while your TV and receiver finishes switching), and Apple has said that they don’t feel that’s a good user experience. Thus the proposed solution of “dynamic” frame rate (not a hard switch between modes).
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