New Qualcomm Court Filing Wants iPhone Suppliers to Pay Royalties Amid Battle With Apple

As the legal dispute between Apple and Qualcomm continues, Qualcomm this week has requested an injunction to force Apple’s iPhone manufacturers to keep paying royalties during the legal battle (via Axios). Last week, Qualcomm sued four of Apple’s suppliers — Foxconn, Pegatron, Wistron, and Compal — for “breaching their license agreements” by failing to pay royalties on the use of Qualcomm’s technology in the assembly of Apple’s devices.

Now, Qualcomm is trying to force the suppliers to continue to make royalty payments amid the legal scuffle with Apple. According to Qualcomm’s general counsel, Don Rosenberg, the company believes that “it is only fair and equitable” that the suppliers pay for Qualcomm’s licensed technology.

“We are confident that our contracts will be found valid and enforceable but in the interim it is only fair and equitable that our licensees pay for the property they are using,” Qualcomm general counsel Don Rosenberg said in a statement to Axios.

In April, Apple decided to stop making royalty payments to its manufacturers in relation to Qualcomm technology, and said it would continue doing so until the conflict was resolved. Now, in an amended section of its earlier lawsuit, Qualcomm claims Apple has promised to compensate its suppliers for any monetary loss potentially faced during the lawsuit.

According to Qualcomm, this is a tactic enacted by Apple “to make litigation unbearable” and to force a settlement, because Qualcomm claims that Apple knows it would not win if the case eventually made it to court.

By withholding billions of dollars in royalties so long as Qualcomm defends itself against Apple’s claims, Apple is hoping to make litigation unbearable for Qualcomm and, thereby, to extract through a forced settlement what it knows it cannot obtain through judicial process—a below-market direct license. Apple’s tactics are egregious.

The lawsuit began with an FTC complaint regarding Qualcomm’s anticompetitive patent licensing practices, for which Apple sued Qualcomm, accusing the company of charging unfair royalties for “technologies they have nothing to do with.” The argument died down for a few months until Apple ceased royalty payments to its suppliers in April, which particularly hurt Qualcomm because the company’s licensing deals are directly with iPhone suppliers and not Apple itself.

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Apple Design Chief Jony Ive Appointed Chancellor of London’s Royal College of Art

Chief Apple designer Jony Ive has been appointed chancellor of London’s Royal College of Art (RCA), it was announced on Thursday. Ive is set to take up the role in July and will replace British engineer Sir James Dyson, who has been provost of RCA since 2011.

“I am thrilled to formalise my relationship with the RCA, given the profound influence the college has had on so many of the artists and designers that I admire,” Ive said in a statement.

“Our design team includes many RCA alumni, who embody the fundamental values of the college. I look forward to advising both the college and students, hoping that my experience proves useful in their work.”

In his unpaid five-year term as head of the college, Ive will preside over meetings and help to govern RCA, which in 2017 was ranked the world’s best institution for art and design for the third year in a row by QS University World Rankings.

“We are delighted to welcome Sir Jony Ive as our new chancellor,” said Paul Thompson, RCA’s rector. “It is a great honor to be joined by the world’s leading designer of his generation, who has produced consistently innovative and commercially successful technology and design.”

The designer of the iMac, iPod, and iPhone received an honorary doctorate from the RCA in 2009. Ive also holds honorary doctorates from Oxford and Cambridge Universities, and has received several other accolades from leading British institutions.

Tag: Jony Ive

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Apple Transitions App Store Pricing to Local Currency in 9 Countries

Apple is in the process of transitioning App Store pricing from the U.S. dollar and euro to local currencies in nine countries. The announcement was made last week on Apple’s iTunes Connect resource page, and the first reports are coming through that the price changes are equating to small savings in some countries, owing to favorable exchange rates.

App Store pricing in Romania is now showing in the country’s Leu currency, which has made books, apps, and songs a little cheaper, according to iTutorial.ro. For example, an individual music track that cost 15,42 lei before the change, now costs 14,99. Small savings also extend to Apple Music and iCloud subscriptions.



Similar subscription savings have been reported by ThinkApple in Poland, where many prices have been converted at a rate of 1 euro to around 4 zloty, which is currently lower than that offered by banks. Savings in the region aren’t as forthcoming in the App Store, however, with some prices actually a little higher.

As well as Poland and Romania, Apple is switching store currencies in Bulgaria (Lev), Czech Republic (Koruna), and Hungary (Forint). In addition, Chile, Colombia, Croatia, and Peru are changing to local currency from the U.S. dollar. Developer proceeds will also be paid out in local currencies as and when the transitions complete.

(Thanks, Alex!)

Tag: App Store

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API Documentation Browser ‘Dash’ Returns to iOS App Store As a Free Download

Last October, popular API documentation browser Dash was removed from the iOS App Store after Apple accused the app’s developer, Kapeli, of fraudulent conduct involving hundreds of fake reviews.

Kapeli’s Apple developer account was terminated in the controversy, and with no way to sell the app on the App Store, the Dash code was subsequently made open source.

However, according to a Wednesday blog post on Kapeli’s website, open sourcing Dash for iOS led to some people submitting it to the App Store in violation of its GNU GPL License:

Quite a few “developers” have even added it to the App Store themselves, violating the GNU GPL license in the process. Apple has been very responsive in removing these apps, but the developers kept adding it back in different shapes and forms and I got tired to fill the same copyright claim forms over and over.

In an effort to stem the tide of copycat apps appearing in the App Store, Dash developer Bogdan Popescu decided to create a personal developer account with Apple and submit Dash for iOS to the App Store.

I’ve made a personal developer account which Apple accepted and the review for Dash for iOS went through without any issues. I hope this will somewhat stave off the pirated copies of Dash from appearing on the App Store. We’ll see.

Dash was approved and is now available as a free download. [Direct Link] The macOS version of Dash continues to be sold exclusively on the developer’s website.

Tag: Dash

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Twitter for Apple TV Gains Support for Live 360 Degree Video and Periscope Global Map

Twitter today updated its app for the Apple TV, introducing support for live 360 degree videos, making it the first Apple TV app to support such a feature.

Following the update, Apple TV users can watch live 360 degree videos directly on their television sets, navigating through the scene with the Siri remote. The new version of the Twitter app for Apple TV also includes support for the Periscope Global Map, letting users find user-created Periscope content from around the world.



Much of Twitter’s television content comes from its content deals, but there is also a wealth of user-generated video sourced from Periscope that can be watched within the Twitter for Apple TV app.

Along with an update to its Apple TV app, Twitter has also updated its iOS app. As noted by TechCrunch, the iOS update offers up new settings to connect a Twitter account stored on an iOS device to the Apple TV, letting users view their Twitter account on the Apple TV.

There’s one other Twitter update, which includes support for Emoji 5.0. Emoji 5.0 was released in March and includes emoji like grinning face with star eyes, vomiting face, face with raised eyebrow, elf, mermaid, zombie, giraffe, pretzel, and more. While Twitter has implemented support for the new emoji, Apple has not, so these characters are only visible when using Twitter for web.

Twitter for iOS can be downloaded from the App Store for free. [Direct Link]

Tag: Twitter

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Apple Watch Proves Most Accurate at Measuring Heart Rate in New Fitness Tracker Study

In a new study comparing the accuracy of seven different fitness trackers, the Apple Watch was found to have the lowest margin of error when measuring heart rate, beating the Basis Peak, Fitbit Surge, Microsoft Band, Mio Alpha 2, PulseOn, and Samsung Gear S2.

Researchers set out to determine the accuracy of wrist-worn devices at measuring both heart rate and energy expenditure, aka calories burned via physical activity. 60 volunteers participated, including 29 males and 31 females, each of whom wore several fitness trackers and completed activities like cycling, running, and walking.



Data gathered by the fitness devices was compared against a “gold standard” tracking method, which included an electrocardiograph (ECG) for measuring heart rate and clinical grade indirect calorimetry (measuring oxygen and carbon dioxide expelled when breathing) for measuring calories burned. An error rate of 5 percent was determined to be within acceptable limits.

Across all of the modes of activity, the Apple Watch had the lowest median heart rate error at 2 percent (1.2% to 2.8%), while the Samsung Gear S2 had the highest error rate at 6.8 percent (4.6% to 9%). The Apple Watch was also notably more accurate at measuring heart rate during the walking test than competing products.

For the walking task, three of the devices achieved a median error rate below 5%: the Apple Watch, 2.5% (1.1%-3.9%); the PulseOn, 4.9% (1.4%-8.6%); and the Microsoft Band, 5.6% (4.9%-6.3%). The remaining four devices had median error between 6.5% and 8.8%.

When it came to measuring calories, no device, Apple Watch included, managed to accurately determine how many calories were burned through activity. Median error rates across all devices and tasks ranged from 27.4 percent (Fitbit Surge) to 92.6 (PulseOn). Though no device was accurate, the Apple Watch did the best at estimating energy expenditure.



Overall, researchers found that most of the fitness trackers tested were able to measure heart rate with an acceptable error level in a laboratory setting, but calorie estimates are largely inaccurate.

There are three principal findings from the current study. In a diverse group of individuals: (1) most wrist-worn monitoring devices report HR with acceptable error under controlled laboratory conditions of walking, running and cycling; (2) no wrist-worn monitoring devices report EE within an acceptable error range under these conditions; (3) of the devices tested, the Apple Watch had the most favorable error profile while the Samsung Gear S2 had the least favorable error profile.

The full study, conducted by Stanford University and the Swedish School of Sport and Health Services, is available in the Journal of Personalized Medicine.

Related Roundups: Apple Watch Series 2, watchOS 3
Buyer’s Guide: Apple Watch (Neutral)

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New iPhone 8 Dummy Video Surfaces as Third-Party Companies Start Developing Clones

Though we’re only four months away from the presumed launch of the “iPhone 8,” we haven’t seen any part leaks for the much-rumored OLED device nor have we seen parts for the two standard LCD iPhones that are said to accompany it.

With a lack of part leaks, we’re relying on dummy units, design drawings, and design renders to give us an idea of what to expect from the device, and there’s been no shortage of those leaks, many of which are somewhat confusing due to the fact that Apple tested several iPhone 8 prototypes.

This week, the first hands-on video featuring an alleged iPhone 8 dummy model surfaced. We already saw the dummy model in question in photographs back in April, but the video provides a better look at the device, and perhaps a better picture of what the iPhone 8 might look like if accurate.



This particular dummy device, said to be a CNC model, aligns with design drawings and rumors pointing towards an edge-to-edge display with a glass body encased in a shiny stainless steel frame. There is no Home button and no visible Touch ID sensor, suggesting it is built into the display, which would be in line with many rumors.

It features a dual-lens rear camera in a vertical orientation and it lacks an Apple logo, so it’s not entirely clear if this is representative of the final design Apple settled on, but it does match up with a lot of the rumors we’ve heard. Alleged iPhone 8 design drawings and schematics that resemble this dummy suggest the iPhone will be thicker than the current iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus.

The dummy device in the video above represents one set of design drawings we’ve seen, but there’s also a second set of design images that have circulated featuring an iPhone with an aluminum body and a rear Touch ID button underneath the Apple logo. The device with a rear Touch ID button is said to be one of the prototypes Apple tested as a fallback should an under-display Touch ID solution not pan out.

Rumors and leaks seem to be coalescing around the first iPhone 8 design without a rear Touch ID sensor, suggesting the images with the back Touch ID button are based on an outdated design that was perhaps scrapped. That it appears unlikely this design will be used in the iPhone 8 hasn’t stopped one China-based company from creating an iPhone 8 clone based on the schematics and design drawings that have been circulating.

Leaker Benjamin Geskin this morning shared images of what he says is an iPhone 8 clone that was designed based on an early iPhone 8 prototype model. It features a front display with slim bezels, a vertical camera, an aluminum body in multiple colors, and a rear Touch ID sensor.



As a clone, this is not representative of what the real iPhone 8 will look like, but it provides an interesting glimpse at prototype design and what an iPhone with a rear Touch ID sensor might resemble.



With multiple prototypes in testing, the actual design of the iPhone 8 will remain unconfirmed and up in the air until we start to see legitimate part leaks. In past years, part leaks have started earlier than May, and their absence may suggest that Apple still has not settled on a finalized design.

For a complete overview of the iPhone 8 rumors and a better picture of what we expect to see included in the overhauled device, make sure to check out our iPhone 8 roundup. It goes into much greater detail on the different design prototypes and it includes information on all of the internal features we expect, like advanced biometrics (facial or iris recognition), an A11 processor, wireless charging, a new front-facing camera system, and more.

Related Roundup: iPhone 8 (2017)

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Apple Releases New Firmware Update for AirPods

Apple today released a new 3.7.2 firmware update for its AirPods, likely introducing bug fixes and performance improvements to the wireless earbuds.

AirPod firmware updates are installed automatically when the AirPods are connected to the iPhone, so AirPods users should begin seeing the new firmware soon as the update rolls out to everyone.



AirPods owners can check the version number in the Settings app by going to General –> About –> AirPods while the AirPods are connected to the iPhone.

Apple did not provide release notes with the firmware update, so it is not known what problems the new software might address.

Though AirPods were first released back in December of 2016, they continue to be in short supply. Shipping times for the AirPods are still at six weeks from the online Apple Store.

Tag: AirPods

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