By: Michael Carey
Welcome to Apple Apex. This weekly column will feature the biggest need-to-know stories for fans and users of all things Apple. Check back weekly for the latest news, rumors, and leaks on everything Apple.
(PRODUCT)RED iPhone 8, 8+ Revealed
As first leaked from a Virgin Mobile UK Employee Memo, Apple has revealed a new color to join the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8+ family – (PRODUCT)Red. Following similar vocabulary to last year, Apple is releasing the new color as the succeeding year’s iPhone is being ready to be revealed in a few months.
The new colors are solely for cosmetic purposes only, meaning that buying a (PRODUCT)Red iPhone is solely for the choice of color. But what makes these iPhones different, is the cause that is behind it. For every (PRODUCT)Red accessory or device Apple sells, a portion of the sales is donated for HIV/AIDS relief in eight African countries.
Last year, Apple revealed the (PRODUCT)Red iPhone 7 and iPhone 7+ in March. MacRumors is reporting that Apple may have waited until April so all sales of the new (PRODUCT)Red iPhone’s can be fully reflected in the sales for the third quarter, which typically is a slow period for Apple.
In addition, Apple also revealed an iPhone X (PRODUCT)Red Leather Folio case that will retail for $99.
Pre-orders for the new (PRODUCT)Red iPhone’s are open now, and the Folio case is available for pre-order as well. Deliveries of these products, as well as in-store pickup, will begin Friday.
Apple also put together a TV AD for the new iPhone (PRODUCT)Red editions, which can be seen below
Screen Replacements bricking iPhones
iPhone users that are running iOS 11.3 and have had their screens replaced by a third-party are facing new problems with their devices.
First reported by Vice, iPhone 8 users are claiming that those who are using their phone with a third-party screen are no longer working.
Apple has always kept a strong grip on iPhones in terms of repairs. If Apple opens your phone and finds any third-party parts, they have the right to charge you to replace those parts according to an anonymous Apple Employee in New Jersey.
When Apple (or a third-party company) has to replace your screen, they must also upgrade the microchip inside your phone. If the chip is not upgraded to meet the new screen, the touch inputs on the device will not respond to any touch, rendering the device useless according to 9to5Mac. TouchID will unlock your phone still, but your touch screen will not be able to be used.
Repair shops all together are beginning to stop repairing not only iPhone 8’s but also Apple’s flagship iPhone – the iPhone X. Allegedly, replacing the ambient light sensor and or the camera, will disable FaceID all together, a major selling point for the iPhone X.
Apple has yet to comment on the situation and has not confirmed if they plan to release a fix.
Modular Mac Pro is coming
Video editors, animators, and graphic designers rejoice! Apple has reassured its customers that the Mac Pro is not being discontinued and that an all-new Mac Pro is currently being developed.
An interview with TechCrunch with Apple SVP Phil Schiller revealed that developers were “hungry” for evidence that Apple hasn’t forgotten about them. The current Mac Pro is currently reaching its 5th year of in production and the sales figures have not been where Apple was projecting. In response, Apple has formed the “Pro Workflow Team” to head the development of the new Mac Pro.
No technical specifications have been revealed yet, but we could see a sneak peek of the new Mac Pro at WWDC in June. Apple gave developers a sneak peek on stage in 2013 in June at WWDC which was met with great fanfare. The Mac Pro lost half its size, and this brand new beautiful designed housing. Its main draw was an emphasis on cooling – with a Thermal Core. The heat from each of its 3 sides of the boards would be sucked into the center of the unit, and then blown out the top, getting rid of heat faster, and keeping the noise of the new Mac Pro at half the level of the previous generation Mac Pro.
There are a few reasons why the Mac Pro has not been the raging success Apple was hoping for. The main reason is its lack of upgradability. Users can only upgrade certain things, such as the RAM in the unit. This is a big reason why Schiller revealed that the current plans do show a modular design. While it is a minority group who would utilize this (i.e. Developers), Schiller reaffirmed that developing new hardware for the “Pro” level customers is still a priority.
The current base price of a Mac Pro sits at $2999.
One More Thing… Where is AirPower?
Back in September, Apple threw their hat in the ring of Wireless Chargers.
AirPower, Apple’s wireless charging mat, is big enough to charge an iPhone, your Series 3 Apple Watch, and the yet to be released AirPods wireless charging case.
This is Apple’s solution to a headache that can be charging up to 3 devices at the same time, with three separate cables. It’s a great idea… the question is now – Where is it?
Apple promised a 2018 launch window and there were rumors circulating that the end of March could have been the timeframe. Apple has not released any details about the mat and its availability.
This is not the first time that Apple has teased a product, and waited a long time to release them. AirPods, the Mac Pro, and the iMac Pro all have had similar release windows. It comes down to the simple fact that Apple does not follow any timeframe, but their own.
In terms of how much this will be, again, Apple has been silent on those details. A Polish retailer, as reported by 9to5Mac, suggested a price of $199 for the mat, which is priced out of range of the most common wireless chargers that typically fall below $100. There is also no confirmation is Airpower will be an “Apple Only” device, such as the HomePod, meaning that only Apple devices are capatable.
Samsung patented their own wireless charging pad, that can charge either 2 Samsung Galaxy devices, or one Galaxy and a Samsung Galaxy Gear watch.
Thank you for checking out Apple Apex. Check back weekly for the latest news, rumors, and leaks on everything Apple.
Disclaimer – Michael Carey and WHIP Radio are in no way affiliated with Apple.
Michael is an award-winning radio host at WHIP Radio. He has been a staple host on WHIP’s Wake Up Call, and has recently occupied the role of Program Director for the station.