Apple generates a lot of news, and it can be hard to keep up. If your mind was on other things this week, our roundup of Apple-related headlines will bring you up to date.
iPhone 12 coming on 13 October!
It feels like we’ve been talking about the iPhone 12 forever, but it appears to be almost here. A plausible-seeming leaker (with an IP address that fits their story) has tipped 13 October for Apple’s big launch event, and the generally reliable Jon Prosser concurs and adds that pre-orders will start on 16 October.
As I discuss in the article above, it’s not just the opinion of two seemingly well-connected leakers that makes this prediction convincing. It also fits with everything we know already: it’s the right day of the week, it matches the recent comment by EE’s boss that the device is “just days away”, it’s not too soon after the September event but it allows space before the holiday buying period. It just feels right.
On that subject, here’s a late inswinger of a delivery on the branding front: after all these months talking about the iPhone 12/12 Max/12 Pro/12 Pro Max, we’re now hearing that the smallest model will be called iPhone 12 mini. And we’ve seen more photos of the new braided cable.
iOS 14 and macOS Big Sur: The reviews are in
Apple has five operating systems, but there’s no doubt which are the big two.
If you’re one of the millions of iPhone owners wondering whether to install iOS 14, or one of the millions of Mac owners wondering whether to install Big Sur (when it finally comes out), you’re in luck, because Macworld this week published its official verdicts on both.
Our iOS 14 review looks at the pros and cons of updating your iPhone now. Yes, we’ve no doubt that some apps still aren’t working perfectly with the new OS, but we’ve seen or heard of very few – and that’s something you can check on a case-by-case basis if any software is absolutely mission-critical. Given the new features and interface improvements offered by iOS 14, in the end we come down on the side of “Yes, updating is a good idea.”
If you’re running an older device, incidentally, take solace from Martyn’s experiments with iOS 14 on an iPhone 6s. It ran fine.
Our macOS Big Sur review, meanwhile, necessarily takes a slightly different approach because the software isn’t officially finished; indeed we don’t even know when it will come out. But Karen has been rummaging in the depths of the beta and has reached the conclusion that, while there aren’t any earth-shattering changes, Big Sur “is really going to improve our Mac experience when the final version arrives”.
News in brief
An important bit of news for UK readers. The NHS COVID Track & Trace app has launched, and it’s really important that you take part. Here’s how to install it on your iPhone (and why you should).
The Apple Watch Series 6 has been disassembled and, as expected, it’s got a larger battery. Apple’s made good use of the space previously taken up by Force Touch.
Bowlcut troublemaker Mark Zuckerberg continues to pop up in my various social media running his mouth about Apple. Facebook’s android chief executive was this week dropping truth bombs about the AR technologies expected to feature in Apple Glass: “I don’t personally find that particularly compelling,” he said. Meow!
Need a power brick for your Apple Watch? It’ll cost you.
Is the long and tedious Apple/Epic dispute finally fizzling out? The only development this week was Epic’s denial of Apple’s claim (stay with me here) that Fortnite on iOS was waning in popularity before the maker started protesting about the App Store rules. Had enough of this now.
The return of Google Maps is an important step for the Apple Watch, argues Samuel Nyberg.
The much-awaited second series of See looks to have been pushed back to autumn 2021.
Bugs and problems
At the start of the week we reported on complaints from yet more 27in iMac owners (the iMacs are 27in, not the owners) that their machines were displaying flashing white horizontal lines on the screen. This is something that’s been documented since the start of September, but at the end of the week Apple finally sorted it, with the release of the macOS 10.15.7 update.
One of the handy new features in iOS 14 that we mentioned just now is the ability to change your default email and web-browser apps. Unfortunately an embarrassing bug means these choices get reverted when you restart the iPhone.
watchOS 7, meanwhile, has been having issues of its own. Some users are finding that their updated Apple Watches are no longer saving workout route data. Others are experiencing excessive battery drain, although Peter has found a fix.
And to finish an unusually packed bugs and problems section, two YouTube issues: Apple TV still doesn’t support 4K despite this feature appearing in tvOS 14 betas, and there are problems with picture-in-picture in iOS 14.
The rumour mill
Anders reports on rumours that you may soon be able to stream Xbox games on iPhone and iPad.
News continues to emerge on the AirPods Studio front. Apple’s rumoured over-ear headphones, we’re now hearing, will get the iPhone’s U1 chip for fancy gesture control.
And that’s it for this week. Stay Appley!