Source: This article was published windowscentral.com By DAN THORP-LANCASTER - Contributed by Member: Olivia Russell

Microsoft's visual search is graduating from beta, now rolling out for everyone on iOS.

following a short period of beta testingMicrosoft Edge is now rolling out an intelligent visual search for everyone. The addition brings the iOS version of the app up to par with its Android counterpart, which picked up a visual search in June. But beyond that, there are a few other neat features tagging along in this update as well, including paste-and-search and the option to choose from more default search engines.

As for the highlight feature of this update, visual search lets you quickly snap a photo or choose one from your camera roll, then search the internet for information based on whatever you snapped. Microsoft is talking up the feature's usefulness for shopping, helping to track down items of clothing, for example, that you like. That's also bolstered by a built-in barcode scanner, which can be used to find deals on items. Visual search can be used to find more information on landmarks around you as well.

Here's a full look at all of what's new in this update:

  • Intelligent visual search gives you a cool new way to find contact info, identify landmarks, or find similar images based on a photo
  • Support paste and go/search in address bar
  • Choose from more default search engine options
  • Performance improvements

And if you're signed in with a work or school account, there are a few other goodies to check out:

  • See your organization's home page
  • Securely access intranet sites from home
  • See mobile browser activity on your PC's timeline

If you're giving Microsoft Edge a shot on your iPhone or iPad, you can check out all of these new features by grabbing the latest update from the App Store now.

Published in Search Engine

Apple’s iOS platform has a wonderfully simple and intuitive UX, but the platform continues to grow more and more complex with each passing year. The iPhone is the kind of device that just about anyone can pick up and figure out how to use quickly, and yet it also hides all sorts of nifty features and functions that even the most savvy users probably don’t know about.

Learning about cool secret features that are hiding in your iPhone is always fun because it makes your phone feel fresh and new, if even for a moment. We’re going to run through 10 little-known iPhone tricks in this post. Even if you already know about some of them, we guarantee you’ll learn something new.

Delete text faster: When you tap and hold the backspace key on the iPhone’s keyboard, the delete rate speeds up after a while. But here’s a trick we bet you didn’t know — if you press harder on the backspace key on any iPhone with 3D Touch, it’ll speed up instantly. Deleting will also slow back down if you release some of the pressure.

Quickly and easily turn off the flashlight: Being able to turn on the iPhone’s flashlight from Control Center while the phone is locked is super convenient. But having to swipe back in and tap the button again to turn it off can be annoying, especially when your hands are full. Instead, simply start to swipe our lock screen to the left like you’re opening the camera, but only swipe a tiny bit and then let go. Your phone will think you’re opening the camera app and the flash will turn off.

As someone who walks a dog late at night every day, I can confirm that this trick definitely comes in handy when you’ve got an iPhone 7 Plus in one hand and a bag full of in the other.

See all open Safari tabs: Isn’t that cascading list of Safari tabs annoying? Instead of scrolling around looking for something, turn your phone to landscape while on any tab. Then pinch the screen like you’re zooming out on a photo, and you’ll see all of your open tabs like this:

safari-tabs iPhone - AOFIRS

Open Spotlight in any app: Sometimes you want to search your phone without opening the Notification Center. You can — with any app open, just pull down from the top of the screen like you’re opening Notification Center, but stop when just the search field is visible and you feel a little haptic vibration.

Easy package tracking: Did someone send you a package and then text you the tracking number? Tap and hold on the tracking number in the Messages app and an option will pop up right there to track it.

Prioritize app downloads: Via Reddit, did you know you could prioritize your app downloads? If you’re in the middle of downloading and/or updating a whole bunch of apps but there’s one in particular you need, just 3D Touch the icon and you’ll get this menu:

prioritize iPhone - AOFIRS

Infinite zoom on any photo: It’s kind of annoying that you can only zoom in to a certain point on photos you capture on your iPhone. Check this out — tap the edit button, crop the photo just a tiny little bit, and save it. Now you can zoom in infinitely! Things start to get a little weird after you zoom in too far, so try not to get lost.

Search for words on a webpage: Okay, this one is HUGE. Most people have no idea that you can actually search for words on a webpage in mobile Safari just like you can in a desktop browser. One any webpage, type the word you’re looking for in the URL bar but don’t tap “Go.” Instead, scroll down and you’ll see an option to search for the word, and you can then tap through each instance. Here, you can see that I searched for the word “echo”:

find iPhone - AOFIRS

Close all Safari tabs at once: This is a big one for people who leave tons of tabs open and decide they need to start fresh. Just tap and hold on the tab switcher button in the bottom-right corner in Safari, no 3D Touch needed. A little menu will then pop up and give you the option to close all tabs.

Drag share sheet options to rearrange them: Here’s another trick that comes courtesy of Reddit. If you want to quickly reorder your options on the iOS share sheet, simply tap on one and drag it around. Here’s a screenshot that shows how it works:

share iPhone - AOFIRS

 

Source: This article was published on bgr.com by Zach Epstein


 

Published in Others

While Apple has a relatively small number of iPhone variants to choose from compared to many smartphone manufacturers, the amount of ways to buy an iPhone can be overwhelming. With most carriers in the U.S. moving away from two-year contracts and subsidized devices, full-price or installment plans are the primary ways to purchase an iPhone.

Since all installment plans or iPhone upgrade programs from the major U.S. carriers and Apple offer 0% interest, these options can be a good fit for a lot of consumers. While many of these plans are relatively similar, they all have their differences. Follow along for a detailed breakdown to find out which iPhone upgrade program is best for you.

Whether you need to buy an iPhone immediately or are planning on waiting until the fall for Apple’s 10th anniversary release, it’s useful to have a good handle on purchasing options.

If you know you’d like to stick with your current carrier no matter what, you have the option of using the carrier’s iPhone upgrade program/installment plan or using one of Apple’s options.

If you’re open to switching carriers, you’ll of course have the most choices. Overall, the Apple options provide the most flexibility and potentially the best overall value. AT&T and Verizon’s options offer convenience and no extra fees for upgrading yearly, while Sprint and T-Mobile both charge extra for yearly upgrades.

Here’s a detailed comparison of the different upgrade plans from Apple and the major U.S. carriers:

iphone-upgrade-programs-compared-1 iPhone - AOFIRS

iphone-upgrade-programs-compared-2 iPhone - AOFIRS

Apple

Apple definitely influenced the industry when it first made its iPhone Upgrade Program available starting with the iPhone 6s/6s Plus. With Apple’s plan having a 12-month upgrade option at no cost, AT&T and Verizon shortly followed suit. Now all the major carriers offer a yearly upgrade option (although some charge an extra fee).

Other benefits of Apple’s options are getting an unlocked device (easily using with another carrier), and having the option for AppleCare+ bundled in for about $5/month. Another use case that can be a good fit for Apple’s options are users who have a family plan with extended family, but don’t want to put hardware costs on the monthly bill.

Also, when the iPhone 7/7 Plus launched, iPhone Upgrade Program customers received a better chance at getting a device. Keep in mind Apple’s programs require a credit card (no debit cards), although this could change in the future. One other limitation is that Apple only offers its installment plans for its newest iPhones.

AT&T and Verizon

Both AT&T and Verizon offer 0% interest, a yearly upgrade option and most of the same fine details. At first glance AT&T’s prices may seem cheaper, but that’s because they market their prices starting with a 30-month installment plan, while all the other carriers price based on 24-month payoffs.

Some benefits of choosing to go with AT&T or Verizon’s installment/upgrade plans include the convenience of the cost being added to your bill and some customers may be pre-approved.

Sprint and T-Mobile

While you may be saving some money on your service with Sprint or T-Mobile, both of these carriers charge extra fees for yearly smartphone upgrades. Sprint charges $5/month for 12-months to opt-in for yearly upgrades. T-Mobile charges between $9-$15/month for its JUMP program that provides yearly upgrade options and an extended warranty.

Conclusion

With the detailed comparison charts above and your personal preferences in mind you should be able to figure out which upgrade program is best for you without breaking a sweat.

For more details on how the math all works out for installment plans vs. the mostly retired subsidized device plans,

Source: This article was published 9to5mac.com By Michael Potuck

Published in Others

Let the speculation about the iPhone 9 (not the 7 Plus pictured above) begin!

Just when you thought we'd reached peak iPhone speculation, the rumor mill pops off and churns out a hot new leak to kickstart the chatter.

The leak is concerned with the handset Apple's dropping in 2018 — and no, that's not a potentially delayed version of the device currently being called the iPhone 8, which is still months away from even being officially revealed. 

We're talking iPhone rumors within the standard release cycle for a device slated for fall 2018, which we'll refer to as the iPhone 9 because why not. That next next iPhone could come with massively huge OLED screens, according to a report in the Korean Herald, which was spotted by Mac Rumors.

The rumor comes from supply chain sources claiming to have some insider knowledge of a new agreement between Apple and Samsung. The report claims the iPhone 9 is expected to come in two OLED-screened models, with giant 5.28-inch and 6.46-inch display sizes. 

Those screens would dwarf current displays, as the standard iPhone 7 measures at 4.7 inches while the 7 Plus comes in at 5.5 inches. We can't say anything about the iPhone 9's design just yet, but the uptick in display area might come without a significant bump in the phones' casing size as Apple moves to an edge-to-edge design — for instance, the upcoming 8 is rumored to boast a 5.8-inch display in a profile of just over 5 inches. 

Samsung signed on to provide the iPhone maker with OLED screens for its handsets, starting with this year's model, but the new deal could potentially more than double the number of units due to Apple to 180 million.   

For those of you who aren't satisfied looking just one measly year into Apple's future, no worries: We've already heard a little something about 2019's phones too, from the same sources. That supply chain leak claimed every iPhone will switch to an OLED display by then — and with the Samsung deals and a rumored secret OLED development lab in Taiwan, there's actually more smoke here than some of the less grounded speculations about this year's device.    

As always, though, there's no way to know what Apple will do for sure until the company tells us itself, so we'll have to wait until next year, and then the year after, to know if these massive OLED screens will really be coming to our future phones. 

Until then, we'll just have to stay occupied with this year's rumors. The "final form" of the iPhone 8 has supposedly come to light — but it's still a long time until September, and there will be plenty of new leaks and rumors along the way. 

Source: This article was published mashable.com By BRETT WILLIAMS

Published in Others

Apple rolled out the new iOS 10.3 update Monday — and if you took the plunge and upgraded to the new OS, you might have noticed your iPhone is running a bit more quickly and smoothly than it did before.  

Published in Others

Apple’s 2017 iPhone lineup is poised to be the company’s most interesting and ambitious yet. By the time September rolls around, it’s widely believed Apple will release three brand new iPhone models: an iPhone 7s, an iPhone 7s Plus, and last but not least, the highly anticipated iPhone 8.

While the iPhone 7s and 7s Plus will sport the same form factor as the iPhone 7, the iPhone 8 will introduce a completely new design, complete with an advanced edge-to-edge 5.8-inch OLED display that will essentially take up the entire front end of the device. In fact, reports from the rumor mill suggest that the bezels surrounding the iPhone 8 display will only be about 4mm all around, a tidbit seemingly confirmed by our exclusive look at an iPhone 8 dummy model earlier this week.

With June right around the corner and the finalized iPhone 8 design likely locked down at this point, there’s a good chance that the number of leaked iPhone 8 moldings and schematics will rise significantly in the weeks and months ahead of the iPhone 8 release. To this point, Slashleaks today points us to a new series of photos — originally sourced via Weibo — which show us three different iPhone molds corresponding to the three new iPhone models Apple will release later this year.

iphone-8-molds iPhone - AOFIRS

While the photo above doesn’t shed a whole lot of new light on Apple’s 2017 iPhone lineup, it does suggest that the iPhone 8 may be slightly taller than the iPhone 7s. While previous reports claimed that the iPhone 8 will pack a display the size of an iPhone 7 Plus into the form factor of an iPhone 7, the iPhone 8 may actually be slightly larger if we assume that the molds above were all aligned uniformly.

Another point worth noting is that the camera module on the iPhone 8 is oriented vertically, a design which echoes a number of leaked schematics and designs we’ve seen over the past few months. It’s widely believed that the vertical orientation of the iPhone 8’s camera module has to do with the rumored augmented reality features Apple is planning to show off later this year.

With the iPhone 8 design said to feature one giant piece of glass, it’s widely believed that Apple will incorporate the Touch ID sensor into the display itself. Though some previous leaks have featured a cut-out for a Touch ID sensor on the back, it’s believed that the final iPhone 8 design will be far more elegant and user-friendly.

Now as for when we can expect to see the iPhone 8 finally hit store shelves, the good news is that we won’t have to wait longer than usual. Despite an onslaught of rumors claiming that the iPhone 8 release date might be pushed back by 4-8 weeks, more recent reports from credible sources indicate that the iPhone 8 release, like most other iPhone releases, will go down in September.

Price wise, it’s no surprise that Apple plans to charge a premium for the iPhone 8, with the entry-level 128GB model said to retail for $1000 and the more storage-friendly 256GB model said to retail for $1,099.

Source: This article was published BGR.com By Yoni Heisler

Published in Others

Google also expected to announce integration of the Assistant into GE appliances.

Google’s developer conference kicks off tomorrow in Mountain View, Calif. One of the expected announcements, according to a Bloomberg report, is the expansion of AI and the Google Assistant to a range of other devices, including the iPhone:

At the Google I/O conference this week, the Alphabet Inc. unit plans to bring it to at least three more places: iPhones, coffee tables and kitchens. The Mountain View, California-based company is set to announce a version of its AI-powered assistant for Apple Inc.’s iPhone as soon as Wednesday, according to a person familiar with the matter.

The report says that it will be presented as a “free, standalone app” that can be downloaded from the App Store. It’s not clear whether it will be an update of the Google app or a new app called Google Assistant. The report also says that it will integrate with other Google apps installed on users’ iPhones.

Google’s Photos app will reportedly also be enhanced with more AI capabilities (it already has the Assistant baked in). Google will also enable the creation of physical “coffee table books” through the app.

Perhaps most interesting is the expected integration of the Google Assistant into home appliances made by GE:

Google is also integrating its Assistant into GE home appliances such as refrigerators, dishwashers, ovens, washers and dryers. Users will be able to ask the Assistant how many cleaning pods are left in the dishwasher, or tell it to pre-heat the oven to 350F, or ask if the laundry is clean.

Samsung is likely to do something similar with its Assistant, Bixby. Bixby may be partly or wholly based on acquisition Viv. The battle for the smart home is well underway.

Last week, AI was also front and center at Microsoft’s developer conference. The company said that AI was being integrated into all of its products, from Office to the XBox.

If the Bloomberg report is accurate (and I presume it is), the Google Assistant will join Cortana in seeking to lure users away from Siri, Apple’s digital assistant. While Siri has a built-in advantage over rivals, literally, Google Assistant on the iPhone puts additional pressure on Apple to improve Siri’s performance.

In a recent Stone Temple Consulting analysis, Google Assistant was found to be the most comprehensive and accurate vs. Alexa, Siri and Cortana.

Source: This article was published searchengineland By Greg Sterling

Published in Search Engine

Samsung on Wednesday finally unveiled its new Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ flagship smartphones, and every single Android fan on the face of the planet breathed a sigh of relief at the exact same time. After months of leaks and rumors that have been simultaneously generating tons of buzz and trying everyone’s patience, Samsung’s new flagship phones are now official. Are they everything we hoped they would be? Yes… and so much more.

We already covered all of the key details like the release date and specs, and we also gave you a much closer look at the new phones in our in-depth Galaxy S8 hands-on preview. Now it’s time to line up Samsung’s new smartphones against their toughest rivals and take a look at 10 key ways the Galaxy S8 and S8+ outshine Apple’s iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus.

Infinity Display

Samsung calls it an “Infinity Display.” We call it flat-out gorgeous. Apple has been a bit behind the times for several smartphone generations now when it comes to its flagship phones’ screen-to-body ratio, mainly because it has used the same iPhone design for three consecutive years. The gap between Apple and its rivals has never been wider than it is now, of course, thanks to the new LG G6 and Samsung’s Galaxy S8 and S8+.

The new Galaxy S phones feature faces that are each 83% screen. The side bezels are barely there, as was the case last year, but the real story is the significantly thinned bezels above and below the display. This new design dramatically enhances the user experience, and it looks great as well. Of course, it also doesn’t hurt that Samsung’s new Quad HD+ Super AMOLED displays are the most stunning smartphone screens yet.

Curved edges

Samsung’s first smartphone with a curved edge was a total gimmick. In 2017, however, that’s no longer the case. The symmetrical curved front and back glass on the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ make the phones feel so much thinner than they actually are. They’re so comfortable in the hand, and reach is improved as well, thanks to the curves.

Meanwhile, my go-to smartphone, the iPhone 7 Plus, isn’t comfortable at all to use with one hand. Also of note, it has a display that is smaller than the screens on both new Galaxy S models, and yet the phone itself is about the same size as the Galaxy S8+.

Desktop Experience

With the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+, consumers inch closer to a future without any need for traditional computers.

Samsung’s new DeX Station accessory allows users to dock their Galaxy S8 or S8+ and connect it to a monitor, keyboard and mouse. The desktop-optimized Android experience is lightning fast — it actually looks and feel a lot like Chrome OS, for obvious reasons. While any app is accessible in desktop mode, Samsung’s own apps have been optimized for the Desktop Experience. Some third-party apps have as well, most notably Microsoft’s mobile Office suite.

Iris scanner

Apple changed the game when it introduced the first iPhone with a Touch ID fingerprint scanner, and now every flagship phone out there has a scanner for quick unlocking and payment authentication. Of course variety is the spice of life, and you can never have too many options when it comes to mobile security.

Samsung’s Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ include the iris scanner from last year’s ill-fated Galaxy Note 7, and it can be used to unlock the phone or to gain access to the handset’s Secure Folder.

Face recognition

Speaking of new security options, the S8 and S8+ also include full facial recognition enabled by the upgraded 8-megapixel front-facing camera. For the time being, face recognition can only be used to unlock the phones.

Bixby AND Google Assistant

Sticking with the theme of “choice,” Samsung is also giving users their choice of virtual personal assistants. Google’s popular Google Assistant is included on the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+, as is Samsung’s own new personal assistant Bixby. iPhone users have access to third-party voice assistants as well, but they’re severely crippled since Apple doesn’t allow developers to access key components of iOS.

Bixby Vision

An extension of Samsung’s new Bixby solution, Bixby Vision uses object recognition, text recognition and location data to add another layer of functionality to its personal assistant. Using the phone’s camera, Bixby can “see” objects or points of interest and offer information pertaining to them. Bixby Vision can also translate text in real time in more than 50 languages.

Third-party developers will have access to Bixby Vision as well, so the possibilities are endless.

New 10nm processor

Apple is THE leader when it comes to smartphone chipsets, but Samsung beat Apple to the punch with the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+. Both the Snapdragon 835 and the Exynos 8895 are 10nm chips, offering dramatic improvements in both performance and efficiency. Apple is working on a new 10nm SoC as well, but it won’t be found in any iPhones until this coming September.

Wireless charging

Wireless charging is another feature Apple is working on for its next-generation iPhones, but Samsung phones have supported wireless charging for years. The Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ ship with wireless charging support as well, of course, including Qi and Samsung’s own fast wireless charging tech.

Fast charging

Did someone say fast charging? The large 3,000 mAh and 3,500 mAh batteries in Samsung’s new phones fill up in no time thanks to support for the latest available fast-charging technologies. Meanwhile, iPhone users continue to buy 12W iPad power adapters just to charge up their iPhones slightly quicker.

Source : bgr.com

Published in Others

Security flaws smash worthless privacy protection

Analysis To protect mobile devices from being tracked as they move through Wi-Fi-rich environments, there's a technique known as MAC address randomization. This replaces the number that uniquely identifies a device's wireless hardware with randomly generated values.

In theory, this prevents scumbags from tracking devices from network to network, and by extension the individuals using them, because the devices in question call out to these nearby networks using different hardware identifiers.

It's a real issue because stores can buy Wi-Fi equipment that logs smartphones' MAC addresses, so that shoppers are recognized by their handheld when they next walk in, or walk into affiliate shop with the same creepy system present. This could be used to alert assistants, or to follow people from department to department, store to store, and then sell that data to marketers and ad companies.

Public wireless hotspots can do the same. Transport for London in the UK, for instance, used these techniques to study Tube passengers.

Regularly changing a device's MAC address is supposed to defeat this tracking.

But it turns out to be completely worthless, due to a combination of implementation flaws and vulnerabilities. That and the fact that MAC address randomization is not enabled on the majority of Android phones.

In a paper published on Wednesday, US Naval Academy researchers report that they were able to "track 100 per cent of devices using randomization, regardless of manufacturer, by exploiting a previously unknown flaw in the way existing wireless chipsets handle low-level control frames."

Beyond this one vulnerability, an active RTS (Request to Send) attack, the researchers also identify several alternative deanonymization techniques that work against certain types of devices.

Cellular radio hardware has its own set of security and privacy issues; these are not considered in the Naval Academy study, which focuses on Android and iOS devices.

Each 802.11 network interface in a mobile phone has a 48-bit MAC address layer-2 hardware identifier, one that's supposed to be persistent and globally unique.

Hardware makers can register with the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) to buy a block of MAC addresses for their networking products: the manufacturer is assigned a three-byte Organizationally Unique Identifier, or OUI, with is combined with an additional three-byte identifier that can be set to any value. Put those six bytes together, and you've got a 48-bit MAC address that should be globally unique for each device.

The IEEE's registration system makes it easy to identify the maker of a particular piece of network hardware. The IEEE also provides the ability to purchase a private OUI that's not associated with a company name, but according to the researchers "this additional privacy feature is not currently used by any major manufacturers that we are aware of."

Alternatively, the IEEE offers a Company Identifier, or CID, which is another three-byte prefix that can be combined with three additional bytes to form 48-bit MAC addresses. CID addresses can be used in situations where global uniqueness is not required. These CID numbers tend to be used for MAC address randomization and are usually transmitted when a device unassociated with a specific access point broadcasts 802.11 probe requests, the paper explains.

The researchers focused on devices unassociated with a network access point – as might happen when walking down the street through various Wi-Fi networks – rather than those associated and authenticated with a specific access point, where the privacy concerns differ and unique global MAC addresses come into play.

Unmasking

Previous security research has shown that flaws in the Wi-Fi Protected Setup (WPS) protocol can be used to reverse engineer a device's globally unique MAC address through a technique called Universally Unique IDentifier-Enrollee (UUID-E) reversal. The US Naval Academy study builds upon that work by focusing on randomized MAC address implementations.

The researchers found that "the overwhelming majority of Android devices are not implementing the available randomization capabilities built into the Android OS," which makes such Android devices trivial to track. It's not clear why this is the case, but the researchers speculate that 802.11 chipset and firmware incompatibilities might be part of it.

Samsung v Apple

Surprisingly, Samsung devices, which accounted for 23 per cent of the researcher's Android data set, show no evidence of implementing MAC address randomization.

Apple, meanwhile, introduced MAC address randomization in iOS 8, only to break it in iOS 10. While the researchers were evaluating devices last year, Apple launched iOS 10 and changed its network probe broadcasts to include a distinct Information Element (IE), data added to Wi-Fi management frames to extend the Wi-Fi protocol.

"Inexplicably the addition of an Apple vendor-specific IE was added to all transmitted probe requests," the paper explains. "This made identification of iOS 10 Apple devices trivial regardless of the use of MAC address randomization."

This shortcoming aside, Apple handles randomization correctly, in the sense that it properly randomizes the full 48-bits available for MAC addresses (with the exception of the Universal/Local bit, set to distinguish between global MAC addresses and the local ones used for randomization, and the Unicast/Multicast Bit).

The researchers find this interesting because the IEEE charges a fee for using the first three bytes of that space for CID prefixes, "meaning that Apple is freely making use of address space that other companies have paid for."

In a phone interview with The Register, Travis Mayberry, assistant professor at the US Naval Academy and one of the paper's co-authors, expressed surprise that something like 70 per cent of Android phones tested did not implement MAC address randomization.

"It's strange that Android was so vulnerable," he said. "It's just really bad at doing what it was supposed to do."

'Closest to being pretty good'

Apple, meanwhile, fared better in terms of effort, though not results. "Apple is the closest to being pretty good," Mayberry said, but noted that Apple devices, despite the advantage of hardware consistency, are still vulnerable to an RTS (Request to Send) attack. Sending RTS frames to an Apple phone forces the device to reveal its global unique MAC address, rather than the randomized one normally presented to the hotspot.

"No matter how hard you try, you can't defend against that because it's a property of the wireless chip itself," said Mayberry.

There was single Android phone that fared well. "The one Android phone that was resistant to our passive attacks was the CAT S60 which is some kind of 'tough' phone used on construction sites and the like," Mayberry explained in an email. "It did not have a recognizable fingerprint and did not ever transmit its global MAC except when associating. It was still vulnerable to our active RTS attack though, since like I said, that is a problem with the actual chips and effects every phone."

Mayberry was at a loss to explain why Apple shot itself in the foot by adding a trackable identifier to a system that previously worked well.

"I initially thought it might be to support some of the 'continuity' features where multiple apple devices can discover and exchange stuff like open browser tabs and clipboard contents but that came out in earlier versions of iOS," he said. "It also might be linked to the HomeKit features that they added in iOS to control IoT devices. Basically it would have to be to purposefully identify and discover other Apple devices that are not associated, otherwise we wouldn't see it in probe requests. All of this is pure speculation though and we really don't have a strong reason for it."

Mayberry said he hoped the research would help the industry understand the consequences of everyone doing things differently. There's no generally accepted way to handle MAC address randomization. "There are so many phones not using it," he said. "There should be a standard." ®

Source: This article was published on theregister.co.uk

Published in Internet Privacy

The price of flagship smartphones has skyrocketed in 2017... but are these increases in prices justified?

Are phones getting too expensive? I’d argue, yes.

Do you need a flagship phone for your daily driver? I’d argue in the negative – no, you really don’t; there are many, many awesome phones out there and a lot of them can be acquired for less than $400/£300

Should you get the latest iPhone every year? Probably not.

But people do – millions of them, each and every year. Apple, Samsung, Google and whoever else you care to name have ALL increased the price of their flagship offerings in 2017.

Apple is expected to unveil the first $1000+ phone later on this year in the form of the iPhone 8.

Samsung’s Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 Plus, which are both fine, fine handsets, arguably the best Android phones available right now, retail for just shy of $1000 unlocked.

Back in the day, the Samsung Galaxy S4 retailed for £589.95 in the UK.

This is a dramatically lower figure. So what’s changed? Samsung’s upped its game, of course, improving the specs, hardware and design of its phones. But to the tune of over 300/400 quid? Not a chance.

Each Galaxy S8 handset costs Samsung $307 (or £240) to build, meaning the company is making a very tidy profit margin – around $45 more than it cost to make the Galaxy S7.

Apple’s even worse: its iPhone 7 costs $224.80 to make and it sells them for $649 (and that’s for the base model).

Costs will have increased with 2017’s iPhone 8, which is now scaling up, but Apple will still be making the same HUGE profit margin on each phone, as all it has to do is increase the price per unit accordingly.

Hence the $1000+ iPhone 8.

Which brings me back to my original point: Paying $1000 For A Phone Is Kinda Stupid When You Think About It.

First, $1000 is A LOT of money. Second, are you getting THAT much value from your phone, or could you get just as much using a lower-cost model? Third, why are you buying this $1000 over a $600 or even $500 phone like the OnePlus 3T, which is just as good and has similar specs/performance.

Seriously: why are you (and millions of other people) limbering up to pay $1000+ for a new phone in 2017? Couldn’t that money be used elsewhere?

There are a myriad of cheaper options out there. Some, like the OnePlus 3T are actually better – I’d take that handset over a new iPhone any day of the week.

Don’t believe me? Check out this guide to the best, brilliant-yet-affordable Android phones I put together. All the handsets on this list are superb, so be sure to check them out.

But What If You Like The iPhone?

You mean: what if I have expensive tastes? Simple: get an iPhone – but don’t buy the latest and greatest; go for last year’s model and you will save a fortune (even more so if you buy reconditioned).

Apple supports its iPhones for A LONG TIME, meaning those running an iPhone 6 will still probably get at least another two solid year’s worth of updates from Apple before it is consigned to the rubbish heap.

Moral of the story? If you’re looking to save money, don’t by a new iPhone – buy it reconditioned from somewhere like Gazelle. The phone will look new, get software updates for years to come, and cost you A LOT less than a brand new one.

Once you’ve done this you’re free to shop around for the best data and minutes packages on the web.

Android’s a little different, in that ALL Android phone makers are terrible at supporting their handsets with consistent, timely updates. Case in point: some Galaxy S7 models are ONLY just receiving Android Nougat, an update that came out almost 12 months ago.

This is a big downside. You can get around it by rooting your Android phone, though this isn’t something everybody is comfortable doing.

Still, with Android you have WAY more options when it comes to getting your hands on cheaper phones that are very impressive. The OnePlus 3T is my ultra recommendation, followed by the Google Nexus 6P if you can find one. Beyond this you have the Xiaomi MI5 and handsets like the one’s listed here.

If you’re looking to save some bucks in 2017, you might want to check out some of the phones I’ve mentioned above. They’re all superb and, best of all, retail for WAY LESS than $1000.

Source : This article was published knowyourmobile.com By Richard Goodwin

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