Top Apple Stories of the Week: Federighi Bashes iPhone App Sideloading at Web Summit, USB-C iPhone X Up for Auction, More

BY Chandraveer Mathur

Published 6 Nov 2021

New MacBook Pro

In case you missed events and interesting news from the world of Apple this week, check out our roundup of top stories of the week, so you’re all caught up with everything Apple.

This week was rather eventful in the Apple world. The Wall Street Journal spotted a report claiming that the iPhone would soon be able to call emergency services automatically in the event of an accident. Also, the world’s first and only USB-C-equipped iPhone X is up for auction, and bidding closes next week. On the opposite end of the spectrum, Apple senior VP Craig Federighi criticized sideloading of apps on the iPhone.

iPhone and Apple Watch Could Auto-Dial 911 after Car Crash in 2022

According to a report, Apple is developing a crash detection algorithm that would rely on sensor data from iPhone and Apple Watch to detect spikes in G-forces indicative of sudden impact or an accident. The company has also been using the 911 call data. Documents reportedly showed that Apple has been testing crash detection for the past year using anonymous data collection.

So far, Apple’s algorithms detected 10 million events that could have been car crashes, of which over 50,000 resulted in a call to emergency services. Apple could make this feature publicly available next year, and it would be a useful feature if implemented judiciously.

Craig Federighi Calls iPhone Sideloading a ‘Cybercriminal’s Best Friend’

During his keynote address at Web Summit 2021, Apple senior VP Craig Federighi criticized the Digital Markets Act regulation announced in December last year in the EU. Among other changes, it forces Apple to allow applications to be sideloaded on the iPhone.

Federighi also addressed a popular counterargument that suggests Apple allows sideloading of apps, but with adequate warnings. He said that people could be routinely coerced into sideloading apps for the benefit of bad actors. He even mentioned that sideloading is difficult on Android. We disagree on all counts and believe that Apple should allow sideloading and pave the way for accelerated development of its ecosystem aided by third parties.

World’s First and Only USB-C iPhone X Prototype Goes up for Auction on eBay

Last month, a robotics engineer Ken Pillonel shot to fame in Apple circles after successfully swapping the Lightning connector on his iPhone X for USB-C while retaining charging and data transfer capability. This famed prototype is now up for auction on eBay under the condition that the buyer agrees not to restore, update, or erase the phone, not to use it as a daily phone, and not dismantle it to look inside.

At the time of publishing, the highest bid is for $100,100, and you can bid as well since the auction closes after five days. Apple, are you seeing how much people are willing to pay for a USB-C iPhone that isn’t even current-generation hardware?

Apple’s Mixed Reality headset Could Debut in 2022 with WiFi 6E

Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo believes the company’s first mixed reality headset will debut in 2022. His report corroborated another by Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman earlier this week. Previously, Kuo said the headset was delayed, but he seems to have backtracked on the claim now.

Kuo added that Facebook (now called Meta) would join Sony in releasing a mixed reality headset around the same time. These headsets will wirelessly interface with smartphones or computers using WiFi 6E to deliver immersive experiences to the wearer. Compared to WiFi 6, WiFi 6E offers lower latency and interference with faster transmission speeds. The gadget could cost upwards of $3,000.

Google Outlines Compliance Plan for South Korea’s New IAP Laws, but Things Change for Apple Too

This week, Google announced plans to comply with the South Korean law that requires it to modify its in-app payment (IAP) system to allow third-party options alongside Google Play billing. The company said app developers would be charged a fee if customers use these third-party systems.

Apple also criticized this law, but thanks to the exact words of the ruling, it could reportedly get by unscathed. In related news, Facebook has begun offering a “promotional link” for subscriptions so creators can bypass Apple’s 30 percent commission. Meanwhile, Apple’s General Manager in South Korea, Brandon Yoon, has tendered his resignation.

Apple Google Collaboration

Other Top Apple Stories This Week:

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