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In the world of Apple news, the past week was decidedly software-focused. But the most exciting headline might have centered on some rumored, upcoming hardware.
In recent days, Apple updated the iPhone’s iOS 13 software to iOS 13.1, in a bid to make it more desirable—and less buggy. And, after a long wait, gamers who wanted to play one of the top mobile titles this year finally got their hands on Mario Kart Tour from Nintendo.
But the most interesting news came byway of TF International Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who said that the 2020 iPhones that Apple will release next year will take some design cues from the iPhone 4 launched all the way back in 2010.
It’s been a big week of Apple news. And below, we’ll talk in more detail about the those headlines and others. Read on to learn more:
Apple Goes Back to the Future
When Apple released the iPhone 4 in 2010, the company touted its sharp lines, glass backplate, and metal spine. Now, Apple is planning to bring back the look in the 2020 iPhones, according to TF International Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. The devices will still have a screen that covers nearly their entire face, but will add metal design elements to the spine to look more attractive, the analyst wrote. Also, all three phone models Apple releases next year will have organic light-emitting diode (OLED) screens. This year, the iPhone 11 Pro models have that feature, but the cheaper iPhone 11 does not.
Hit the Road with Mario Kart Tour
After months of delays, Nintendo released Mario Kart Tour. The game, which players can download for free on the App Store, allows players to take on the roles of Mario, Yoshi, and other prominent Nintendo characters, and race around various tracks. Nintendo is monetizing the game by offering in-app purchases and a $5-a-month subscription service for access to all the game’s content. In just its first 24 hours of availability this week, users downloaded the game 10.1 million times, shattering the previous record of 6.7 million day-one downloads for Pokemon Go.
Is iOS 13 Worth a Download?
Many users have criticized iOS 13, released last week, as buggy and filled with odd glitches that affected everything from Mail to smart home apps. But Apple has already updated it. This week, the company offered iOS 13.1, with plenty of bug fixes and other new features, like the ability to turn Apple Music into a karaoke machine with scrolling lyrics. If you haven’t already, the update is worth the download.
How Well Can Apple Watch Improve Hearing Health?
The new watchOS 6 for Apple Watch comes with a noise-level-detection feature that will allow the smartwatch to measure the level of ambient sounds. Apple said it would use the feature for studies on improving hearing health in humans. This week, a researcher conducted a test to see how accurate Apple’s Noise app was at measuring sound levels and the results were solid: the app accurately measured noise levels with up to just 1% of variation compared to a full-blown sound meter. That could be good news for Apple’s pending research efforts.
Screen Replacement Games
If your break the screen of your iPhone 11 Pro or iPhone 11 Pro Max and get it replaced outside of Apple’s Genius bar or an authorized repair center, your phone may not like it. For phones with third-party displays, Apple will place an alert on the lock screen saying that the display could not be verified as “genuine.” Apple recently made a similar decision with third-party batteries by alerting users to not being able to track their battery health.
One More Thing…
Disney CEO Bob Iger told CNBC in an interview this week that he left Apple’s board this month because the two companies’ “paths were conflicting.” He added that Disney Plus is “meaningful” for Disney, but competing streaming-video service Apple TV Plus is “relatively small for Apple.” Still, he felt it “wasn’t right” for him to serve on Apple’s board.