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This week’s top stories: Secret iPod Geiger counter, new iPhone 12 dummy images, iOS 14 beta 5 released, more – 9to5Mac

In this week’s top stories: The fascinating tale of Apple helping the US government create what was likely a stealth iPod Geiger counter, a look at new iPhone 12 dummy images, Apple may have revealed a clue about the iPhone 12 event date, iOS 14 beta 5 is released, Apple sets the date for terminating Epic Games’ developer account, and more.

Top-secret iPod Geiger counter

One of the most interesting stories of the week was a former Apple engineer sharing about his time working on a top-secret project that was likely helping the US government hide a Geiger counter in the iPod. Father of the iPod, Tony Fadell also confirmed the events.

They had added special hardware to the iPod, which generated data they wanted to record secretly. They were careful to make sure I never saw the hardware, and I never did.

We discussed the best way to hide the data they recorded. As a disk engineer, I suggested they make another partition on the disk to store their data. That way, even if someone plugged the modified iPod into a Mac or PC, iTunes would treat it as a normal iPod, and it would look like a normal iPod in the Mac Finder or Windows Explorer. They liked that, and a hidden partition it was.

The full story is really fascinating and worth a read — check it out here.

New iPhone 12 dummy images

As we approach the iPhone 12 launch, we got a look at some new dummy images of the upcoming lineup giving a good look at what to expect.

The dummy iPhone 12 units don’t show an accurate representation for what we’ll see launch this fall in for every little detail, like the notch or camera arrays, they show us every size we’re expecting with the all-new squared-off design.

This year we should see the iPhone 12 to come in 5.4- and 6.1-inch models, with the iPhone 12 Pro and Pro max coming with 6.1- and 6.7-inch displays. Check out all of the new dummy images in our full post.

In addition to the new dummy models, we got a fun look at what the 5.4-inch iPhone 12 could look like in all the vibrant colors that the iPhone 11 is offered in a new concept gallery.

iPhone 12 event date?

A little slip up this week may have given a clue about when the iPhone 12 event might be. A few eagle-eyed 9to5Mac readers noticed that Apple accidentally published a “TEST” livestream feed on its YouTube channel for a few moments. The livestream date was set for September 10.

However, there are some factors to consider that could impact Apple’s plans for the iPhone 12 event date. Namely, in a rare move, Apple acknowledged during its Q3 earnings call that the availability of this year’s iPhones would be a “few weeks later.”

iOS 14 beta 5 released

The fifth developer beta for iOS 14 was released this week. The latest build includes several new using-facing features like the return of the wheel picker for alarms (although in a hybrid form), a toggle for the Hidden Album in the Photos app, and a new “Tall” News widget.

There are also new availability alerts for Exposure Notifications. Along with that, there are now five US states offering an app based on Apple/Google’s Exposure Notifications software.

Developers now have access to App Clips testing options, widgets are now blocked when a parent app is blocked with Screen Time, and there are new location access requests for widgets.

In other beta news, Apple also made the iOS 14 public beta 5, macOS Big Sur public beta 2 and developer beta 5, and watchOS 7 public beta 2 and developer beta 5 builds available.

AirPower prototype teardown

This week we saw an alleged AirPower prototype teardown that reveals why Apple likely decided to cancel the project. The video shows off a complex design with 14 wireless coils and a dense amount of electronics packed into the surface of the wireless pad.

Apple officially canceled AirPower in March 2019, citing that the product wouldn’t meet its standards. But reports cited that, specifically, Apple was having trouble with overheating issues and the project was too expensive. Check out the full teardown here.

Apple and Epic’s battle continues

After evading Apple’s App Store rules earlier this month by including its own direct payment option in Fortnite, Epic Game’s hit title was pulled by Apple. Then hours later, Epic filed a lawsuit and launched a protest campaign.

This past week, Epic shared that Apple gave warning that it will see its developer accounts terminated on August 28. For its part, Epic said the move was retaliation for suing Apple and filed another lawsuit asking the Northern California District Court to prevent Apple from being able to terminate its developer accounts.

At the end of the week, we saw Apple make its first official court filing in the lawsuit saying that Epic had asked for a special deal to not only use a direct payment option but to also run its own app store on Apple devices.

Apple has said that Epic can solve all the problems by submitting an updated version of Fortnite without the direct payment method that got it kicked out. But so far, Epic seems determined to hold its ground. We’ll find out what happens in the saga this coming week as the termination deadline is set for Friday, August 28.

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We’ll be back this coming week with all new episodes!

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Stories discussed in this episode:  

Epic Games sues Apple over App Store rules, says it would create a competing iOS app store if allowed
Report: Apple to launch TV+, Showtime, and CBS All Access bundle next week
Fortnite removed from App Store after Epic Games added direct payment option
Fortnite is offering direct payments w/ discounts to get around app store fees on Android, iOS
Apple’s new Retina 5K iMacs fall to Amazon all-time lows at up to $109 off
Apple Watch Series 3 GPS + Cellular gets $50 discount, more deals from $169
9to5Toys on Twitter

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  1. August 14, 2020 – Apple vs Epic Games and Fortnite
  2. August 13, 2020 – iOS 13.6.1 release, ‘Apple One’ bundle
  3. August 12, 2020 – iOS 14 privacy features, Apple Watch Activity Challenge
  4. August 11, 2020 – watchOS 7 public beta, more
  5. August 10, 2020 – iPhone 12 production, iOS gaming

9to5Mac Watch Time Season 3 Coming Soon |

Here’s a quick update on the status of 9to5Mac Watch Time: Good news — season three is coming this fall! After a break during July and August, Watch Time will recalibrate and come back with a focus on marathon training with Apple Watch.

9to5Mac Watch Time is a podcast series hosted by Zac Hall. In this series, we talk to real people about how the Apple Watch is affecting their lives. 9to5Mac Watch Time is available on Apple Podcasts, Overcast, and your favorite podcast player through RSS.

What’s new in watchOS 7? Sleep tracking, face sharing, hand washing, and more

9to5Mac Watch Time

Zac Hall and Michael Potuck from 9to5Mac unpack the latest updates to watchOS 7 and Apple Watch in this special live edition of 9to5Mac Watch Time.
9to5Mac Watch Time is a podcast series hosted by Zac Hall. In this series, we talk to real people about how the Apple Watch is affecting their lives.

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watchOS 7 for Apple Watch: Sleep tracking, face sharing, new workouts including dance, hand washing detection, more
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  1. What’s new in watchOS 7? Sleep tracking, face sharing, hand washing, and more
  2. watchOS 7 preview, Watchcast crossover, #WWDCRun
  3. A conversation on race with Ish ShaBazz (In memory of George Floyd)
  4. Choosing fitness with David Smith
  5. Launching Activity Stats with Rahul Matta

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Apple Music Radio rebrand, iOS 14 beta 5 changes, Epic’s App Store fight continues

9to5Mac Happy Hour

This week on 9to5Mac Happy Hour, Benjamin Mayo and Zac Hall discuss the rebranding of Beats 1, new changes in iOS 14, week two of Apple’s Fortnite battle, and much more. Our thanks to LinkedIn Jobs and Fundrise for supporting the podcast!

Stories

Apple releases iOS 14 beta 5 and iPadOS 14 beta 5 to developers
Hands-on: iOS 14 beta 5 changes and features [Video]
Save 50%: CBS and Showtime bundle offer now available for Apple TV+ subscribers
How to sign into CBS apps and CBS․com with your Apple TV Channels subscription
Apple TV+ debuting first music competition series with Reese Witherspoon’s ‘My Kind of Country’
Apple renames Beats 1 to ‘Apple Music 1’, launches two more live radio stations
Apple terminating Epic’s developer account over Fortnite App Store protest
News publishers including Wall Street Journal join attack on App Store, ask for Apple’s cut to be halved
iPhone 12 event date? Apple posts and deletes September event test on YouTube
Apple becomes first public company to reach a $2 trillion market cap

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Benjamin Mayo @bzamayo
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  1. Apple Music Radio rebrand, iOS 14 beta 5 changes, Epic’s App Store fight continues
  2. Fortnite provokes App Store fight and ‘Apple One’ services bundle
  3. 9to5Mac Happy Hour 289: Schiller retires, iMac design refuses to retire, iPhone 12 parts leak
  4. Face ID on Mac, Apple confirms iPhone 12 delays, antitrust hearing
  5. iOS 14 beta 3 changes, iPhone 12 specs, iOS apps on the Mac

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97: “You can’t be Springboard”

Stacktrace

Analysis of the ongoing battle between Apple and Epic Games from a technical perspective, the benefit of writing cross-platform Swift code, logging and debugging strategies, and how Rambo merged two apps into one.
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Links

The Bundle API
Fortnite
Epic’s “FreeFortnite” campaign
Unreal Engine
Upgrade #311: Summer of App Store Problems

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  1. 97: “You can’t be Springboard”
  2. 96: “The Pandora’s Box of software”
  3. 95: “We’re not lawyers”
  4. 94: “The great app idea incubator”
  5. 93: “Life is not paper”

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What’s new with device management in iOS 14 and macOS Big Sur?

Apple @ Work

In this episode of the Apple @ Work podcast, Bradley is joined by Jason Dettbarn of Addigy to talk about what’s new with mobile device management with iOS 14 and macOS Big Sur.
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Links mentioned in this episode

LiveDesktop with Addigy
What’s the impact of changing default apps on iOS?

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  1. What’s new with device management in iOS 14 and macOS Big Sur?
  2. Apple @ Work Podcast: iOS 14 and macOS Big Sur bring new password technology to market
  3. Apple @ Work Podcast: Apple device strategy for storage, charging, and sanitation
  4. Apple @ Work Podcast: The intersection of identity and device management
  5. Apple @ Work Podcast: What does CBRS and managed LTE mean for Apple?

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