In a ploy to keep people paying for apps, Apple will let developers offer discounted subscriptions to current and recent subscribers. Until now, developers could only offer freebies and introductory discounts to new users, which means that they couldn’t easily incentivize lapsed subscribers to re-join. As more apps turn to subscription models over one-time purchases, this change will likely go over well with developers and users alike.
Following the controversy over Facebook and Google‘s misuse of enterprise certificates to distribute apps outside of Apple’s App Store, TechCrunch reports that dozens of gambling and pornographic apps used the same process to sidestep Apple’s normal restrictions. Engadget reached out to Apple for comment regarding the report and will update this story if we hear back.
A recent report by TechCrunch and The App Analystrevealed that some major companies use an analytics tool that secretly record every swipe and tap you make within their applications. Now, Apple has started telling developers to remove that screen-recording code if they don’t want their apps yanked from the App Store. See, most of the applications that use the tool don’t ask for permission to record your activities and your screen. That goes against the tech giant’s App Store Review Guidelines, which (as a spokesperson explained to TechCrunch) “require that apps request explicit user consent and provide a clear visual indication when recording, logging, or otherwise making a record of user activity.”
When an app says it’s collecting data for technical support or analytics purposes, it seems innocuous but a report by TechCrunch and The App Analyst found a number of iOS applications that went much further without informing users. The apps mentioned, including Air Canada, Abercrombie & Fitch, Expedia, Hotels.com and others used analytics software from a company called Glassbox that embeds “session replay” tech to show them exactly what users are doing.
Whatever buttons are pushed or information is entered is recorded, and worse, while the feature can be configured to prevent recording of sensitive data like credit card numbers, they didn’t always block it out fully. By using man-in-the-middle software to intercept data going to Glassbox’s servers, The App Analyst showed how this happens in Air Canada’s app, where it could screenshot credit card info and user passwords.
Google has banned dozens of Android apps downloaded millions of times from the official Play Store after researchers discovered they were being used to display phishing and scam ads or perform other malicious acts.
A blog post published by security firm Trend Micro listed 29 camera- or photo-related apps, with the top 11 of them fetching 100,000 to 1 million downloads each. One crop of apps caused browsers to display full-screen ads when users unlocked their devices. Clicking the pop-up ads in some cases caused a paid online pornography player to be downloaded, although it was incapable of playing content. The apps were carefully designed to conceal their malicious capabilities.
“None of these apps give any indication that they are the ones behind the ads, thus users might find
The new Gmail. It’s very white. [credit:
Ron Amadeo ]
Google is pushing a big redesign to the mobile Gmail app on Android and iOS. The update was announced yesterday, and after spending some time with the new app, we’re going to comb through the finer details and see what has changed between New Gmail and Old Gmail.
For now the release is only out on Android, but like the old Gmail design, it should look identical on iOS. If you’re on Android, you want Gmail version 9.x (the old design is Gmail 8). If the Play Store isn’t serving you the update and you’re into sideloading, APKMirror has a safe download. The iOS version is still wending its way through the App Store approval process and should be out sometime this week.
The new design is a good match for the new desktop Gmail design that came
It looks like Apple will soon allow users to gift in-app purchases to friends and family thanks to a recent change to the company’s App Store Guidelines. First spotted by MacRumors, the updated text shows developers can allow people to buy in-app purchases for one another. That includes everything from ongoing subscriptions to one-off boosts. Apple’s policy previously barred such gifts.
This contraption is actually several gadgets in one. It’s a dog treat dispenser, 1,080p video camera with night vision and a barking sensor, which means it will let you know if your dog starts barking and you can check what’s going on using the accompanying app on your iPhone.
The video camera provides a 160-degree wide angle view, so you should be able to see what your dog is doing – and there’s a speaker in the system, which lets you talk to
Be careful what you install an app for, c/o Flickr
Popular Mac App Store apps have been secretly gathering sensitive user dataand uploading it to servers in China and elsewhere, building vast troves of data in places that may not provide the same level of protection as we expect. This is a Very Bad Thing.
What are they doing with this data?
We don’t know what is happening with this data once it is collected. It’s conceivable that this information could be analysed alongside other collections of data to provide insights into a person’s identity, online activity, or even political beliefs. Cambridge Analytica and other dodgy behavioural modification companies taught us this.
The fact is we don’t know what is happening to the data that is being exfiltrated in this way. And in most cases we are not even aware this is taking place.
Engadget has been around for 14 years and counting, which means our archives contain a veritable treasure trove of technology history. From notable reviews and news to the more mundane or ridiculous finds from across the internet, there’s a lot to explore here. “This Day in Engadget History” will take you on a historical voyage as we look at what made the headlines in years past. Join us, won’t you?
It’s definitely been a while since anyone seriously needed to jailbreak their iPhone. While undoubtedly some people still do, it seems like there’s little need now that we’ve seen the tenth anniversary of the iOS App Store. There are plenty of apps these days and a whole different OS (Google’s Android) for those who want something a little more customizable.
Having a bad app or two on your iOS device can really affect your relationship with your iPhone or iPad. If an app is poorly written or buggy, it can reduce battery life, take up more local storage than necessary, and even cause your device to crash or lock up frequently. Today we’ll look at how you can identify those troublesome apps so that you can look for a newer — and hopefully less buggy — version or a replacement for the broken app.
One of the primary factors indicating that an app just isn’t playing well with iOS and your hardware is battery usage. To see just how much of your battery each app is using, launch the Settings app and scroll down to Battery. How each app has performed during the last 24 hour or 7 days is listed in terms of how much power it’s used,
Ten years ago today, Apple officially launched the iOS App Store and — for better or worse — it helped rewrite the rules of society. The iPhone, which debuted about a year prior, came with just north of 12 built-in apps to start. But with the coming of iOS 2.0 and the App Store, the sort of functionality you could squeeze out of Apple’s smartphone was only constrained by a developer’s imagination … and how much storage you had left.
Apple has revealed a redesigned Mac App Store at WWDC 2018, which takes clear design cues from the iOS version of the shop. You’ll notice right away that it now looks a lot like the one on your iPhone and iPad, featuring a “Discover” tab that will highlight a wide range of curated content, anything from “best apps” lists to tutorials and behind-the-scenes stories from developers. Ratings and reviews of applications are now front and center, too, while video previews are making its debut on the Mac App Store for the first time — that’s a feature that launched on iOS in 2014.
It’s officially June now, which means it’s time for us to pack our bags, get on a plane to California and take in the second major developer conference of the season: Apple’s WWDC. We’ll be on the ground at San Jose’s McEnery Convention Center next week scrounging up insights from as many presentations and developer sessions as we can crash. But as always, the show’s focal point is the Monday keynote where Apple lays out its future in software. Be sure to keep your browser locked on our liveblog when the keynote begins on Monday, June 4 at 10AM PT/1PM ET — until then, read on for a primer on all the things we expect see once the keynote unfolds.
Google has confirmed that its revamped YouTube Music streaming service will eventually support key features of its Google Play Music app, including the ability for users to upload music files that may not exist in the service’s streaming catalog.
Google announced an overhaul for YouTube Music last week alongside a price bump for its YouTube Red service. It then began a “soft” rollout of the app for select users on Tuesday.
But the announcement of a revamped YouTube Music app has caused some confusion among those who subscribe to Google Play Music, a streaming music service Google launched in 2011 but has struggled to attract subscribers on the level of category leaders Spotify and Apple Music.
Apple has reportedly started enforcing an App Store rule regarding location data more stringently. According 9to5mac, the tech giant has already removed a number of apps from the Store that share users’ location to third parties without their explicit consent. In the letter it sent to the affected developers, Apple told them their applications didn’t comply with Legal sections 5.1.1 and 5.1.2 of the App Store Review Guidelines. Those sections state that apps must not transmit “user location data to third parties without explicit consent from the user and for unapproved purposes.”
The latest batch of apps, like the ones 12 months ago, were spawned from a variety of different developers. The common thread among all the apps: their code was written on programming platforms infected with malware known as Ramnit. Although the Ramnit botnet of 3.2 million computers was dismantled in 2015, infections on local machines live on.
The malware adds malicious iframes to every HTML file stored on an infected computer. Those iframes then got appended to files that were included in the Android apps. Researchers at security firm Zscaler said almost all of the 150 infected apps were detected using common antivirus engines.
The suite that defines enterprise productivity is also available for iOS. Do you use Office on your Mac? If you do, it’s likely you already subscribe to some flavour of Office 365, and this allows you to install Word, Excel, PowerPoint on your iPad, and provides you with 1TB of free OneDrive storage.
Microsoft recently published an excellent update to the suite, introducing support for drag-&-drop on iPad and Files in iOS 11, and much improved document collaboration. This makes Office an even more invaluable iPad companion,