Logitech Debuts New MX Vertical Ergonomic Mouse

Logitech today announced the launch of the MX Vertical, the company’s most advanced ergonomic mouse to date.

The MX Vertical, which was designed in collaboration with ergonomic experts, combines ergonomic design elements with MX mouse performance for a mouse that cuts down on forearm strain and wrist pressure without impacting productivity.



Up to 12 percent of computer users feel discomfort or pain on a daily basis according to a recent survey, and that’s the consumer base Logitech is targeting with this product. Logitech tested dozens of prototypes and designs to come up with the ideal shape, weight, and glide that eases pain but doesn’t impede mouse usage.

Logitech’s MX Vertical Mouse features a 57 degree vertical angle, reducing muscular activity by up to 10 percent compared to a standard mouse. It puts the mouse into the same position you might use when shaking someone’s hand, offering a thumb rest and a comfortable grip.



Logitech designed the mouse to fit a range of hand shapes and sizes, and there’s a texturized rubber surface that provides an ideal amount of grip. A built-in 240mAh rechargeable battery provides up to four months of usage, and an included quick charge feature provides three hours of power with one minute of charging.

The mouse is highly customizable with an adjustable 4,000 DPI high-precision sensor, which allows for four times less hand movement compared to a standard mouse to reduce usage fatigue. A switch at the top of the mouse allows the cursor speed and accuracy to be easily adjusted from 400 DPI to 4,000 DPI, while Logitech software allows for further customization.

Easy-Switch functionality lets the mouse switch between two computers with no need to re-pair, and Logitech Flow software lets text, images, and files be copied and pasted between multiple machines with the MX Vertical.

Logitech’s new MX Vertical Mouse is priced at $99.99 and will be available in retail stores starting in September. The mouse can be pre-ordered from the Logitech website starting today.
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Facebook Fights US Government Demand to Break Messenger Encryption in Criminal Case

Facebook is contesting a demand from the U.S. government that it break the encryption of its popular Messenger app so that law enforcement can listen in to a suspect’s conversations as part of an ongoing investigation into the MS-13 gang.

The U.S. Department of Justice’s demand is in relation to a case proceeding in a federal court in California that is currently under seal, so public files are unavailable. However, Reuters‘ sources said the judge in the case heard arguments on Tuesday on a government motion to hold Facebook in contempt of court for refusing to carry out the surveillance request.

Facebook says it can only comply with the government’s request if it rewrites the code relied upon by all its users to remove encryption or else hacks the government’s current target, according to Reuters.

Legal experts differed over whether the government would likely be able to force Facebook to comply. However, if the government gets its way in the case, experts say the precedent could allow it to make similar arguments to force other tech companies to compromise their encrypted communications services.

Messaging platforms like Signal, Telegram, Facebook’s WhatsApp and Apple’s iMessage all use end-to-end encryption that prevents communications between sender and recipient from being accessed by anyone else, including the service providers.

Tech companies have pushed back against previous attempts by authorities to break encryption methods, such as the FBI’s request that Apple help it hack into the iPhone owned by Syed Farook, one of the shooters in the December 2015 attacks in San Bernardino.

In February 2016, a U.S. federal judge ordered Apple to help the FBI, but Apple opposed the order in an open letter penned by Tim Cook, who said the FBI’s request would set a “dangerous precedent” with serious implications for the future of smartphone encryption.

Apple’s dispute with the FBI ended on March 28, 2016 after the government found an alternate way to access the data on the iPhone with the help of a private contractor and withdrew the lawsuit.

Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.

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Motorola’s New P30 Smartphone Blatantly Copies iPhone X

Motorola’s latest P30 smartphone is making headlines this week, but not for an impressive feature set or a unique design. As it turns out, Motorola has opted to copy the design of the iPhone X, resulting in an Android smartphone that’s nearly identical to Apple’s flagship device.

The P30, which features a 6.2-inch display, is by far the most iPhone X-like Android smartphone that we’ve seen yet, with a frontal design that includes rounded corners, a notch that’s similar to the iPhone X notch in size and shape, and an edge-to-edge design. There’s a small bezel at the bottom, which is the only feature that distinguishes the P30 from the iPhone X.



At the back, the P30 features a dual-lens camera setup in a vertical orientation much like the iPhone X, and it replaces the Apple logo with a Motorola logo that doubles as a fingerprint sensor. The colorful metallic body of the device is reminiscent of the Huawei P20, making the rear of the smartphone look like a P20/iPhone X hybrid.



Black and white versions look a little more like the iPhone X, and Motorola has even been marketing the device with iPhone-style wallpapers.



Motorola’s P30 is available in China and isn’t being distributed in the United States just yet, and while it has an iPhone X-style design, it is positioned as a mid-range device that’s more affordable, perhaps attempting to lure customers who want the iPhone X look but aren’t able to shell out $1,000.



Inside the Motorola P30, there’s a Qualcomm Snapdragon 636 chip, 6GB RAM, 128GB of storage, and a 3,000mAh battery. The two rear cameras feature 5 and 16-megapixel sensors while there’s a 12-megapixel front-facing camera. Despite the notch, there’s no front-facing facial recognition system.



As The Verge humorously pointed out, the P30 looks so similar to the iPhone X that when doing a Google image search based on the P30, Google guesses that it’s an iPhone X.



Since the iPhone X launched last November, many Android smartphone makers have adopted the notched design to allow for maximum screen space to compete with the iPhone lineup. Smartphones from manufacturers that include LG, Leagoo, Huawei, OnePlus, Asus, Vivo, Oppo, and others have adopted the notch design. Even Google is set to copy the iPhone X’s notch with the upcoming Google Pixel 3 XL, based on leaked images.

Apple is planning to unveil three additional smartphones that use the notch design introduced with the iPhone X, and we’re just a few weeks away from their debut. Based on rumors, we can count on a second-generation 5.8-inch iPhone X with an OLED display, a larger-screened 6.5-inch OLED iPhone that can be thought of as an “iPhone X Plus,” and a 6.1-inch device with an LCD display and a lower price tag.

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All three will feature an edge-to-edge display with a notch that houses a TrueDepth camera system, doing away with the Home button in the iPhone lineup. Apple is expected to introduce the new 2018 iPhone lineup right around the second week of September, perhaps on September 11 or September 12.

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Apple’s Upcoming Drama Based on Child Journalist Hilde Lysiak Gains Lead Actress

Child actress Brooklynn Prince has been cast in the lead role of Apple’s upcoming drama series that’s based on the life of young journalist Hilde Lysiak, reports Deadline.

Eight-year-old actress Prince is known for playing Moonee in “The Florida Project,” and she is currently working with Angelina Jolie and Sam Rockwell on “The One and Only Ivan.”



The upcoming TV show, which will be Prince’s first, follows a young girl who moves from New York to the small lakeside town her father is from, where she unearths a murder case everyone else in the town had attempted to bury.

The show is based on real-life child journalist Hilde Lysiak’s efforts to report on a murder in Selinsgrove, which led to her being the first on the scene to report it. Lysiak’s paper, the Orange Street News, has since earned her national and international media attention.

Apple has ordered 10 episodes of the series, created and executive produced by Dana Fox and Dara Resnik. Fox is known for her work on “Ben and Kate,” “How to Be Single,” and “Couples Retreat,” while Resnik has worked on “Castle,” “Shooter,” and Mistresses.”

Apple has more than a dozen television shows in the works, with a full list available in the original content section of our Apple TV roundup.

Several other shows are currently in the casting stages, including an unnamed space drama developed by Ronald D. Moore, a futuristic epic world-building drama called “See,” and “Are You Sleeping,” a drama based on a murder case reopened by a podcast.

Related Roundups: Apple TV, tvOS 12
Buyer’s Guide: Apple TV (Neutral)

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Netflix Tests Video Promos Between TV Show Episodes

Netflix is testing a new feature that adds video promos in between episodes of TV shows, Netflix confirmed to TechCrunch this afternoon.

The promos Netflix is showing to some users include full-screen personalized videos with content recommendations similar to Netflix recommendations available elsewhere on Netflix.



According to TechCrunch, the promotional videos displace preview information for the next episode of a TV show, with title, description, and thumbnail no longer visible.

Many Netflix users on Reddit and Twitter who have the new video promos have been complaining about them, with multiple threats to cancel the service if Netflix does indeed introduce promotional videos.

TechCrunch says that this is not a feature that is rolling out to subscribers at this time, but is instead a test that Netflix is running to determine how to better promote content.

Still, a small percentage of Netflix’s global audience is impacted by the test, which is ongoing.

At Netflix, we conduct hundreds of tests every year so we can better understand what helps members more easily find something great to watch. A couple of years ago, we introduced video previews to the TV experience, because we saw that it significantly cut the time members spend browsing and helped them find something they would enjoy watching even faster. Since then, we have been experimenting even more with video based on personalized recommendations for shows and movies on the service or coming shortly, and continue to learn from our members.

In this particular case, we are testing whether surfacing recommendations between episodes helps members discover stories they will enjoy faster. It is important to note that a member is able to skip a video preview at anytime if they are not interested.

While some users have said the ads are not skippable, it does appear that customers are able to continue on with an episode at any time, bypassing the promotional video, a feature that has been confirmed by Netflix.

Tag: Netflix

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Review: Logitech’s $70 ‘POWERED’ 7.5W Wireless Charging Stand Offers a Hassle-Free Upright Design

Logitech often works with Apple to introduce new accessories for Apple devices, and in early August, Logitech announced its latest product designed in collaboration with Apple, the new POWERED wireless charging stand for iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone X.

POWERED is an upright charging stand able to charge a compatible iPhone in either horizontal or landscape orientation. Made from a thick, heavy plastic material with a rubber coating to add grip, the POWERED has a horizontal rectangular back supported by a sturdy, angled base that offers just the right amount of stability.



There are four feet on the base, and the same grippy material coats the bottom, so it stays secure on a desk when in use. The base is similar in size to your standard flat wireless charger, and because it’s more of a square shape, it doesn’t take up as much room on a desk or nightstand as a typical round wireless charger.

A small circular LED at the top of the POWERED lights up to let you know when an iPhone is in the correct position to charge, but a benefit to an upright charger is that it’s almost impossible to put the iPhone in the wrong spot. With flat chargers, you sometimes need to shift the iPhone around to get the wireless coil in the charger lined up with the charging mechanism in the iPhone, but vertical stands like the POWERED eliminate that problem.



While the upright back of the charger looks like it might be adjustable due to the design, it’s not. It holds the iPhone at a single angle that’s tilted back slightly, which seems to be an ideal angle for glancing over at the time or watching a video. Because the sides of the base come up around the iPhone in a “U” shape, it always feels secure in the charger when it’s in a vertical position.



The POWERED can also be used for charging in landscape orientation if you want to watch videos, which is handy, but it does feel less secure and prone to toppling over if bumped.

I used the POWERED with an iPhone X, but it’s sized to work with the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus too. With the iPhone X and iPhone 8, there’s about a fourth of an inch of space at the sides, while the iPhone 8 Plus is a tighter fit.



Rumors suggest all three of Apple’s upcoming 2018 iPhones will feature wireless charging, and this charging stand will work with them. The largest of the three devices (the 6.5-inch OLED) is similar in size to an iPhone 8 Plus, which means it will fit in the POWERED.



Design wise, the POWERED from Logitech is similar to Belkin’s Boost Up Wireless Charging Stand, but it has a somewhat smaller bottom base and a rectangular back rather than a circular back. Both hold the iPhone securely and at an ideal angle for video watching, so choosing one over another is just a matter of picking your favorite design.



There is a built-in 1.5-meter cord installed in the POWERED, and Logitech includes a power adapter similar in size to an iPad power adapter. Designed specifically for Apple devices, POWERED offers the faster 7.5W charging available to Apple iPhones.



Depending on external factors like temperature, 7.5W charging isn’t always much faster than 5W charging, but there’s usually enough of a difference that it’s worth choosing a 7.5W charger over a 5W charger.



To test the POWERED, I drained the battery of my iPhone X to 1 percent and then left it on the charger for an hour in airplane mode. In that time, it charged up to 36 percent, which is the same general charging level that I’ve seen with other 7.5W chargers using the same test. During the winter, I’ve seen charging speeds up to about 46 percent with 7.5W chargers, but in summertime temperatures in my office (74 to 75 degrees), ~35 to 40 percent is the norm.

Logitech calls the POWERED the first wireless charger “truly worthy of iPhone” presumably because of the hassle-free U-shaped vertical design, but as far as charging speed goes, it’s equivalent to other 7.5W charging options.

Bottom Line

I have zero complaints about the POWERED from Logitech, aside from the price tag. It’s a nice charger that has all of the features I could ask for: drop and go functionality that prevents me from having to hunt for the coil, portrait and landscape orientation so my iPhone can sit upright, 7.5W charging speeds, and a sturdy base.

Unfortunately, it’s priced at $70, which is expensive and can be hard to justify when there are so many wireless charging options on Amazon that are in the $20 to $40 range.

The POWERED and the similar Belkin Boost Wireless Charging Stand are the best wireless charging accessories that I’ve used, though, and I do think it can be worth shelling out extra money to get a higher quality stand.

With many of the flat wireless charging pads, I have to shift my iPhone around to get it in just the right spot for charging. I’ve run into instances where I think the iPhone is charging and it’s not, or it starts charging and then gets bumped and knocked out of the proper position, something that’s impossible with the POWERED because the U-shaped cradle guides iPhone placement.

If you have similar issues with flat wireless chargers, the POWERED may be worth checking out because it solves a lot of the pain points that come with wireless charging.

How to Buy

Logitech’s POWERED wireless charging stand can be purchased from the Logitech website or from Apple.com for $69.99.

Note: Logitech provided MacRumors with a POWERED wireless charging stand for the purpose of this review. No other compensation was received. MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Logitech. When you click a Logitech link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running.

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MacRumors Giveaway: Win a 7.5W Wireless Car Charger From Choetech

For this week’s giveaway, we’ve teamed up with Choetech to offer MacRumors readers a chance to win a 7.5W Wireless Car Charging Mount that can be used to charge an iPhone X, iPhone 8, or iPhone 8 Plus in the car or at home.

Priced at $30, Choetech’s Wireless Car Charging Mount features a grippy suction cup base that can attach to a car’s dashboard or window, holding the iPhone at an ideal angle for viewing directions, listening to music, and more.



There are two expandable arms that can be adjusted to fit any iPhone or Android device (including in a case), while a rotating ball joint allows the smartphone to be placed in portrait or landscape orientation. An adjustable foot also holds the iPhone or another smartphone in the proper alignment for charging.

Faster 7.5W charging is supported using a QC 2.0 to 3.0 adapter, which is not included in the purchase price, with 5W charging available using other adapters. Depending on a car’s USB power output, 7.5W charging may not be supported. A USB-C port at the bottom provides power with the included USB-C to USB-A cable.



As with all Choetech wireless chargers, the Wireless Car Charging Mount features overheating, over-current, and over-voltage protection.



We have 20 of the Choetech Wireless Car Charging Mounts to give away. To enter to win, use the Rafflecopter widget below and enter an email address. Email addresses will be used solely for contact purposes to reach the winners and send the prizes. You can earn additional entries by subscribing to our weekly newsletter, subscribing to our YouTube channel, following us on Twitter, or visiting the MacRumors Facebook page.

Due to the complexities of international laws regarding giveaways, only U.S. residents who are 18 years or older and Canadian residents (excluding Quebec) who have reached the age of majority in their province or territory are eligible to enter. To offer feedback or get more information on the giveaway restrictions, please refer to our Site Feedback section, as that is where discussion of the rules will be redirected.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
The contest will run from today (August 17) at 11:00 a.m. Pacific Time through 11:00 a.m. Pacific Time on August 24. The winners will be chosen randomly on August 24 and will be contacted by email. The winners will have 48 hours to respond and provide a shipping address before new winners are chosen.

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Transit App Expands Real-Time Crowdsourced Data to 175 Cities

The developers of the Transit app this week announced the expansion of real-time crowdsourced data for buses, trains, streetcars, ferries, and so forth to 175 cities across the United States, Canada, and Europe.



Normally, the locations of public transportation vehicles are pulled from a transit agency’s data feed, which can take anywhere from 10 seconds to five minutes to update. This can result in the app showing a bus approaching a certain stop, for example, when in reality it has already passed by—without you on it.

To solve this problem, the Transit app has turned to crowdsourced data from opted-in users of GO, its step-by-step navigation feature.

GO itself isn’t new. The feature automatically tracks your transit vehicle, walking speed, and location in real time, notifying you exactly when to leave to catch your ride, and when to disembark. The feature can also reroute you and provide adjusted ETAs when unforeseen changes or delays arise.

Now, when users enable GO, they will also be helping others. Once a rider opts into GO on a bus or train, for example, the Transit app will start broadcasting the vehicle’s real-time location, second-by-second, to riders down the line. In general, this greatly improves the location of a vehicle versus agency data.



This means you can watch your vehicle approach—in actual, second-by-second real-time—on the map, whenever someone on that vehicle is using GO.

The team behind Transit has been testing real-time crowdsourced data for nearly two years. Over that time, they’ve generated data for “millions of trips,” starting in the Canadian cities of Montréal and Victoria. Other test regions have included New York City and Los Angeles. The tests are said to have “went well.”

For those with privacy concerns, the Transit team ensures that your location is completely anonymous. Data is only shared with its servers while GO is active and you are actually on board the vehicle. As soon as you disembark, GO shuts off, and your vehicle’s location stops being sent, according to the app’s FAQ.

It’s unclear if there’s a way to continue using the GO navigation helper without opting in to the real-time crowdsourced data sharing aspect, so if you do not wish to participate, it may be best to keep the feature disabled entirely.

Transit also notes that the location sharing feature relies on extended GPS use, which can use up to five percent of battery life on a 20-minute ride, assuming the rider is actively using the device during the trip. In terms of data, though, Transit says GO uses only about 100 kilobytes on a 20-minute trip.

Despite this, the Transit team is hoping that many riders will opt into the feature. They’ve even added some gamification features to the app as an incentive. GO users will now see a smile face in the top-left corner of the map, for example, indicating how many nearby riders they are helping out.



The app also shows GO users how many nearby riders they’ve helped on a monthly basis, and provides a “helpfulness” rank compared to other GO users. Transit is hoping that a little bit of competition will motivative riders to participate.

Transit bills itself as a real-time urban travel companion. The app is especially popular in Canada, making navigation via public transit easier with real-time data, trip planning and comparisons, step-by-step navigation, service disruption notifications, departure and stop reminders, and much more.

Transit works with not only buses, commuter trains, and subways, but streetcars, ferries, ride-sharing, bike-sharing, scooter-sharing, and more. The app is free to download on the App Store for iPhone and Google Play for Android.

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