Every week, Apple makes news with technology developments, business deals and, more often than not, controversies.
That’s where our weekly "Core Bytes" column on Apple comes in. We’ll relay the past week’s news highlights from our favorite backyard tech giant.
Apple just claimed its first patent victory over Motorola: a ‘slide-to-unlock’ ruling. A Munich, Germany-based court granted it an injunction against some of Motorola’s smartphones. Still, that won’t stymie sales: the company has developed a new design anyways, said a spokeswoman at Motorola.
After a slew of criticism over working conditions at its Foxconn factories in China, Apple hired independent monitoring group Fair Labor Association to conduct an inspection of them. The group’s early reports have been beaming with praise, but other monitoring groups remain skeptical that their assessment was detailed enough, the New York Times reports.
Under lawmaker pressure, Apple is now requiring that its software applications receive “explicit consent” before lifting users’ address book data. Bloggers exposed that Apple apps like Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare were absorbing user data, in some cases sans permission.
Apple has undergone a Mac makeover. On Thursday, it unveiled Mac OS X, version: 10.8 Mountain Lion. It’s filled with new features like iMessage, which lets you text anyone with an iPhone for free from your desktop. Antiquated features like iChat and that bright spinning wagon wheel are also getting thrown out the door.
iPhone users may soon be able to send attachments in a new way: through a voice call or voicemail. The U.S. Patent and Trademark office published a patent for a “binding protocol” that allows users to automatically bind their files to their phonecalls.
Business Deals and Developments
Apple may have experienced skyrocketing growth in many of its sectors, but not so in the tablet. The device’s global media tablet market share fell from 64 percent to 57 percent. The Kindle Fire and other low-priced tablets cut into its overall share, analysts say. But Apple CEO Tim Cook, who called the Kindle a “cheap product”, doesn’t seem fazed by the competition.