iPhone Slow: Apple Apologises Over Handling of Issue,

iPhone Slow: Apple Apologises Over Handling of Issue, Drops Price of Out-of-Warranty Battery Replacements

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Apple will offer battery replacements for $29, down from $79
  • Apple apologised over its handling of the issue
  • Will issue iOS update with greater battery life transparency

Facing lawsuits and consumer outrage after it said it slowed older iPhones with flagging batteries, Apple is slashing prices for battery replacements and will change its software to show users whether their phone battery is good.

In a posting on its website Thursday, Apple apologised over its handling of the battery issue and said it would make a number of changes for customers “to recognise their loyalty and to regain the trust of anyone who may have doubted Apple’s intentions.”

Apple made the move to address concerns about the quality and durability of its products at a time when it is charging $999 (roughly Rs. 64,000) for its newest flagship model, the iPhone X.

The company said it would cut the price of an out-of-warranty battery replacement from $79 (roughly Rs. 5,000) to $29 (roughly Rs. 1,850) for an iPhone 6 or later, starting next month. In India, the cost of out-of-warranty battery replacement was approximately Rs. 6,500 inclusive of taxes, as per industry sources. Apple has confirmed that the new price starting next month will be Rs. 2,000, exclusive of taxes. The company also will update its iOS operating system to let users see whether their battery is in poor health and is affecting the phone’s performance.

“We know that some of you feel Apple has let you down,” Apple said in its posting. “We apologise.”

On December 20, Apple acknowledged that iPhone software has the effect of slowing down some phones with battery problems. Apple said the problem was that aging lithium batteries delivered power unevenly, which could cause iPhones to shutdown unexpectedly to protect the delicate circuits inside.

That disclosure played on a common belief among consumers that Apple purposely slows down older phones to encourage customers to buy newer iPhone models. While no credible evidence has ever emerged that Apple engaged in such conduct, the battery disclosure struck a nerve on social media and elsewhere.

Apple on Thursday denied that it has ever done anything to intentionally shorten the life of a product.

At least eight lawsuits have been filed in California, New York, and Illinois alleging that the company defrauded users by slowing devices down without warning them. The company also faces a legal complaint in France, where so-called “planned obsolesce” is against the law.

[“Source-gadgets.ndtv”]

Mozilla, Tor Issue Critical Update for Actively Exploited Firefox Vulnerability

Mozilla, Tor Issue Critical Update for Actively Exploited Firefox Vulnerability
HIGHLIGHTS
The browser vulnerability is being exploited on the Widows platform
Reports say the code was intended for lawful purposes, which went public
Tor and Mozilla have both rolled out updates to curb this exploit
An unknown Firefox vulnerability which originally came to light in a post on the official Tor website, has now been fixed by Mozilla and Tor. The exploit takes advantage of a memory corruption vulnerability that allows malicious payload to send the targets IP and MAC address to an anonymous server.

The Motherboard found several reports that point to this code being used on a Tor hidden service called the Giftbox, which is used to peddle child pornography. This is very similar to the technique used by the FBI back in 2013 to identify users who were trading child pornography, over the Tor network. However, now that this very same code is out in the wild, anyone can exploit it with some changes to the code.

Daniel Veditz from Mozilla, stated in a blog post, “This similarity has led to speculation that this exploit was created by FBI or another law enforcement agency. As of now, we do not know whether this is the case. If this exploit was in fact developed and deployed by a government agency, the fact that it has been published and can now be used by anyone to attack Firefox users is a clear demonstration of how supposedly limited government hacking can become a threat to the broader Web.” Mozilla issued an update to Firefox on Wednesday that it says will roll out automatically to existing users – but users can also update their browsers via the company site.

The Tor browser is built using Firefox as its base. The latest version (6.0.7) is now available for download and is said to fix this issue. The official Tor blog post states that this security flaw is currently being actively exploited on Windows systems and that Mac and Linux users are most likely also affected, although the exploit is being actively present on the latter to platforms as of now.

The blog post by Tor strongly recommends updating the browser immediately if that’s something you use for surfing the Web. If you have the security slider set to ‘High’ then your chances are better, although doing so might prevent most websites that use JavaScript from working properly. Updates to the alpha and hardened versions of Tor are on the way so till then, it’s recommended to switch to the stable release.

Tags: Tor exploit, Mozilla exploit, Tor browser update, malicious code Tor, browser vulnerability, Firefox exploit

[“Source-Gadgets”]

Spotify Free Users Complain of Malware-Infested Ads; Company Addresses Issue

Spotify Free Users Complain of Malware-Infested Ads; Company Addresses Issue

Some Spotify Free users were treated to malware-infested ads with their ad-supported music streaming service. Some users have reported on the company’s forum that random, malicious ads pop-up on the default browser while running Spotify’s freemium service.

The Next Web reports that while the original report was based on a Windows 10 machine, the malware also seems to pop up on other operating systems as well including Linux and macOS. Spotify has acknowledged the malvertising issue and told Engadget that the issue is an isolated on and has since “shut it down”.

(Also see: Spotify Debuts in Japan, Complete With Karaoke Lyrics)

“If you have Spotify Free open, it will launch – and keep on launching – the default Internet browser on the computer to different kinds of malware / virus sites,” wrote user Tonyonly on the company’scommunity page. “Some of them do not even require user action to be able to cause harm,” he added.

In a reply to the user’s complaint, Spotify said, “We’ve identified an issue where a small number of users were experiencing a problem with questionable website pop-ups in their default browsers as a result of an isolated issue with an ad on our Free tier. We have now identified the source of the problem and have shut it down. We will continue to monitor the situation. If you see this issue again, please let us know the exact date and time in this thread.”

In 2011, Spotify faced a similar issue where it displayed malicious ads to some users. The company rectified the problem and issued a public apology.

While Spotify confirms to have fixed the issue, users should still maintain caution and download ad-blockers if running Spotify Free, or shift to the company’s ad-free version instead.

Tags: Spotify, Music Streaming, Streaming, Malware, PC, Laptops, Virus
[“Source-Gadgets”]

Microsoft Releases Fix for Users Affected by Windows 10 Cumulative Update Issue

Microsoft Releases Fix for Users Affected by Windows 10 Cumulative Update Issue

Last week, Microsoft released Cumulative Update KB3194496 for users running Windows 10 Anniversary Update (version 1067), and, this caused problems for some users – trapping them in a loop after the installation failed. The issue only affected those who were previously on the Windows Insider Program before migrating the the public branch earlier this year, as well as some users still on the Windows Insider Program , Microsoft has now come out with a fix.

ZDNet reports that an email statement from Microsoft confirms that the update released for Windows 10 version 1607 on September 29 failed to install and would roll back for many users. The company claimed that a small number of customers in the Windows Insider Program that were running a previous build of the OS were affected.

(Also see: Windows 10 Now Running on 400 Million Active Devices, Says Microsoft)

“We became aware of an issue with the recent Windows 10 cumulative update that impacted a small number of customers in the Windows Insider Program that were running a previous build of the OS. We have created a solution to resolve this issue, which is now live and can be accessed here.”

Users affected by the update reported that after the system reached the 100 percent mark, they would get a prompt saying the process could not be completed and thereby reverting the changes, resulting in a loop of failed attempts.

Microsoft has released a patch that fixes the issue. That link takes you to the Windows 10 1607 (RS1) Script fix to unblock update for Insider.

There is no clear indication as to how many users have been affected although Microsoft says it’s a “small number”. However, ZDNet’s Ed Bott claims “the number is probably in the hundreds of thousands, representing systems that were in the Windows Insider Program, receiving preview releases, during the first half of 2016 before switching to the public branch.”

Tags: Microsoft, Windows 10, Windows 10 Anniversary Update, Bug, Windows Insider Program, Computing, PC, Laptops

[“Source-Gadgets”]