Send as text message in iOS 10

Michael Tsai:

I found several forum posts, but the only solution seems to be to temporarily turn off iMessage, which seems like a terrible solution because it means that you won’t be able to receive iMessages from anyone else in the interim. Worse, the iMessages will look to the sender like they got delivered because they’ll still go to your Mac or iPad.

Ideally, there would be a way to simply start a new conversation using SMS even though there is an iMessage account associated with that phone number.

I absolutely agree. A text message is preferred when reception is spotty, and this whole thing gets very confusing when your talking to someone who has an iMessage account separate from their phone number and a phone number with SMS.

iPhones send call history to Apple if you’ve enabled iCloud

The Intercept reported via a digital forensics firm that iPhones with iCloud enabled send user’s call history to Apple servers:

Russian digital forensics firm Elcomsoft has found that Apple’s mobile devices automatically send a user’s call history to the company’s servers if iCloud is enabled — but the data gets uploaded in many instances without user choice or notification.

“You only need to have iCloud itself enabled” for the data to be sent, said Vladimir Katalov, CEO of Elcomsoft.

This can be justified. Apple do a number of things with your phone call: they allow you to answer calls on any of your devices, they allow third parties to make VoIP calls that look and feel like normal phone calls, for instance. Apple’s response:

“We offer call history syncing as a convenience to our customers so that they can return calls from any of their devices,” an Apple spokesperson said in an email. “Device data is encrypted with a user’s passcode, and access to iCloud data including backups requires the user’s Apple ID and password. Apple recommends all customers select strong passwords and use two-factor authentication.”

It is still technically accessible to law enforcement via a subpoena, but granted, I believe this is true anyway given that carriers would happily provide call logs too. The mistake Apple made here is not in the actual behavior of the phone, but in the disclosure to users. This should have been made clear to the user, or at least found in their famously long agreements.

Facebook promises its users more censorship

Facebook via TechCrunch:

We take misinformation on Facebook very seriously. We value authentic communication, and hear consistently from those who use Facebook that they prefer not to see misinformation. In Newsfeed we use various signals based on community feedback to determine which posts are likely to contain inaccurate information, and reduce their distribution. In Trending we look at a variety of signals to help make sure the topics being shown are reflective of real-world events, and take additional steps to prevent false or misleading content from appearing. Despite these efforts we understand there’s so much more we need to do, and that is why it’s important that we keep improving our ability to detect misinformation. We’re committed to continuing to work on this issue and improve the experiences on our platform.

It’s amazing how straightfacedly and unironically this VP admits to and endorses censorship, as though they have some unique access to the truth, like the solution to Trump getting elected is even more media control. But to their point, it’s their platform, and they can control the flow of information all they want, to me it’s another reason not to use Facebook.

Self-hosted content versus centralized third-party services

Andy Baio via Ben Brooks

Here, I control my words. Nobody can shut this site down, run annoying ads on it, or sell it to a phone company. Nobody can tell me what I can or can’t say, and I have complete control over the way it’s displayed. Nobody except me can change the URL structure, breaking 14 years of links to content on the web.

While I may cross-post some content to Apple News, Medium, and other services as they spring up — I won’t cross post everything and I certainly don’t trust those sites to ever be more than a passing fad. Having my own site gives me complete control to do whatever I want, whenever I want, however I want. I don’t understand why people ever want it any other way.

This is right on the money: I haven’t been on the Internet as a browser or producer for even a fraction of its total life, and I’ve still seen the rise and fall of many websites. MySpace, Digg, Friendster … there is no reason to believe that the trendy publishing platforms of today will be around tomorrow, in fact quite the contrary. While I take this to be an argument against using these services and have no desire to change, I do suspect that this is a somewhat selfish and hermetic Internet existence, where many people would argue Internet introverts have a lot more to gain from centralized platforms than they’re giving up. Specifically, because it’s centralized, the audience is centralized, discovery is easier, and the value of the interactions that happen while the site is live far outweigh the risks of losing that data or ability once the service invariable tanks, either by shutting down or with some insipid monetization scheme.

Perhaps, perhaps not.

More Samsung recalls

NBC News via John Gruber:

Samsung has one more fire to put out: The South Korean company announced on Friday that it was recalling 2.8 million top-load washing machines, following reports of “impact injuries” that included a broken jaw.

The problem stems from unbalanced drums, which can separate from the washer and generate enough internal force to cause other parts of the washer to detach — and, in some cases, be launched out of the machine.

Samsung is also the subject of an August lawsuit from owners who said their machines “explode during normal use.” via Macrumors via /r/apple

Apple was No. 1 by a mile in smartphone operating profit in Q3. Among major vendors, Samsung was No. 2 in smartphone profits with a tiny 0.9% share, he said. Money-losers in the smartphone business last quarter included LG and HTC […].

Perhaps Samsung should cut their losses, play to their strengths, and enter the very lucrative munitions industry. Snark aside, I’m amazed they turned any profit at all after their Note 7 debacle, and in the interest of healthy competition I hope they rebound quickly. I’d still argue their biggest problem isn’t their exploding phones, it’s their operating system, if they had an OS that could even shine a light on iOS in terms of battery efficiency, their batteries wouldn’t need to be nearly as big or would last twice as long.

TechCrunch: “Google buys Eyefluence eye-tracking startup”


Eyefluence shared the announcement quietly today in a blog post, spotted first by Mattermark:

Today, we are excited to announce that the Eyefluence team is joining Google!  With our forces combined, we will continue to advance eye-interaction technology to expand human potential and empathy on an even larger scale.  We look forward to the life-changing innovations we’ll create together!

As Google launches its Daydream virtual reality platform next month with its Daydream View headset, there is already attention being directed to its next-gen headset efforts.

There’s no reason to believe that Google or any other company has today or will evee infiltrate people’s computers to track their eye movements, but they’re certainly incentivized to do so. I encourage you cover your cameras.

Zany genius rocket man releases dreadfully cool video of Tesla’s self-driving car

Tesla have released a video of their self-driving technology via HackerNews. Here’s what it looks like:


It looks just like a Tesla. Compare this with Uber’s self-driving offering:


Given the recent rumor that Apple is pulling out of making the car itself, I think it’s worth noting a critical difference in these two cars: only one of them is cool, and it’s the one with integrated hardware and software.

Electrek: “Tesla increases its lead on the US luxury sedan market, beating Mercedes, BMW and Audi”


Fred Lambert:

Tesla shocked the industry earlier this year when it confirmed having delivered 25,202 Model S sedans in the U.S. in 2015, which gave the company a 25% market share in the premium sedan market. For the first time, Tesla had surpassed market leaders like BMW and Mercedes. Furthermore, every single other large luxury sedan has seen its sales decrease during the same period.

Now the electric automaker is increasing its lead on the US luxury sedan market to such a point that the Model S is now twice as popular as the Mercedes S-Class or the BMW 7-Series. Tesla is literally selling more all-electric sedans in the US than Mercedes and BMW are selling S-Class and 7-Series combined.

I’m surprised at how few of these cars are sold overall, but it’s amazing that Tesla has already taken a commanding lead.

Here’s a take I’m not completely sold on and may be slightly controversial: the cars Tesla are making are faster horses relative to the combustion automobile. The coming revolution in the industry is not a car powered by a different energy source, but a more efficient way of getting between two points, where efficiency is profit, energy, and convenience, namely self-driving. Tesla makes beautiful cars with a laudable set of innovations, which I hope continues have a place in the market, but I see Uber, Apple, and Google as better placed to deliver an autonomous car platform than Ford, General Motors, and by association, Tesla. The Apple or Google autonomous car will not be something you buy at a dealership, it will be a service that’s available in your city.

Related to this point: the dirty secret of Teslas is that they don’t do much to reduce carbon emissions today in the sense that nearly 70% of electricity used charge these cars are the result of burning stuff (which admittedly is a hell of a lot better than a combustion engine’s 100%, it’s likely much more efficient to burn this fuel elsewhere, deliver the electricity, and perhaps capture the carbon). Of course, Tesla seems to be taking steps to address this with Solar City, and they’re doing great work. In fact, far from being a reason to not buy a Tesla, I much prefer the idea of individual ownership of cars to the collectivization of means of transportation for privacy and autonomy reasons, but I digress.

Ars: “Verizon says its Pixels will get updates at the same time as Google’s”


Ron Amadeo:

A Verizon spokesperson has reached out to Ars with the following corrections about its version of the Pixel:

“… [W]hen Google releases an update, Verizon phones will receive the same update at the same time (much like iOS updates). … [W]e have three apps pre-installed on the phone Go90, My Verizon (which is your account management tool) and Verizon Messages (your messaging app). As you noted, all three can easily be uninstalled by the user.”

Assuming this pans out, it’s the closest anyone has gotten to Apple’s total control over the software on its phones. The only difference: the (removable) pre-installed Verizon crapware apps.

When I last purchased an iPhone from a carrier store, I was pressured to activate the phone in-store so they could install their apps for me, supposedly it was “company mandated policy.” I wanted to do an iCloud restore, I didn’t want to twiddle my thumbs while that happened in their store, so I insisted on getting the phone in the box or I was leaving. I was only allowed to do that on the promise that I’d install “myAT&T” when I was finished with the iCloud restore. Naturally, I didn’t do it, their website works just fine.

Mossberg: “Why does Siri seem so dumb?”

Phones have become good enough that differentiating them to consumers is becoming increasingly difficult. Consider that in pursuit of this, Samsung made a phone which explodes, Apple have been re-releasing the same core phone for 3 years now, and LG have actually marketed their DAC in the new V20. But another critical way these phones compete is in artificially intelligent assistants. Here’s Mossberg’s diagnosis:

It seems to me that Apple has wasted its lead with Siri. And now Google, Amazon, Microsoft, Facebook, and others are on the march. Apple has made excited announcements each time it added knowledge domains like sports and movies and restaurants to Siri on the iPhone. But it seems like it hasn’t added any major new topic domains in quite a while.

With regards to the competitive landscape of of artificial intelligent voice assistants, I’d make a case like this: Siri can set timers and alarms, which it excels at, and occasionally to try to respond to a message when typing would be inconvenient, which it is mediocre at best at. I implore you to never try to use it while driving, as it often requires more interaction in time and taps with my phone than typing “yes” or “no” takes on the digital keyboard. Contrastingly, Alexa is great at transcribing, excels in its very limited domains, but cannot perform interesting tasks at the moment other than ordering stuff from Amazon. Similarly, Google’s assistant is probably the best in the market overall in terms of transcribing, understanding, and acting on input, but comes with a series of compromises in privacy and mobile OS that don’t make it worthwhile for me.

More broadly, Mossberg’s piece is unduly pessimistic about Apple’s competitiveness. Apple’s on the right track with Siri extensions – allowing 3rd party developers to interact with their assistant in predictable ways. You can now order an Uber or Lyft with Siri or send money to people, which I consider more important than knowing trivia about the presidential debate or sports games, even if that’s arguably lower hanging fruit. AI assistants are an abstraction which hides a computer’s complexity in a way that I’m not sure will ever be as productive or as fast as a command line or web page, but I look forward to them occupying a a convenient position in our digital lives.

TechCrunch: “Spotify and Apple Music get unofficial mixes, the best part of SoundCloud”

TechCrunch via MacRumors:

SoundCloud’s big differentiator is its offering of unofficial, user-uploaded content that the major labels don’t release and that isn’t on Spotify or Apple Music. Or at least they weren’t. The first unofficial single-track remixes just went live on Spotify and Apple Music thanks to their partnerships with music rights management service Dubset.

Despite not liking the song particularly, this is very cool. I enjoy listening to mixes of songs created by DJs, where one song is transitioned into the next, in order to not lose the “flow” of what I’m doing when a song ends or having to think particularly about what to play next. At the moment, I search SoundCloud and YouTube for them, but it’s at a much lower quality than Apple Music and not as reliable (I’m sure some people find this hard to believe). If this is a first step towards legitimizing and monetizing long-form mixes on popular music distribution services, I’d be very happy about it.


Facebook: “Introducing the Events from Facebook App”

Facebook have launched a new app for iOS based on the event functionality of Facebook, integrating with the phone’s calendar and events created on Facebook. In their own words via 9to5Mac:

Today we’re announcing Events from Facebook, a new app we designed for event seekers who are passionate about keeping up with nearby events and finding things to do with their friends. Whether you’re looking for something to attend this weekend or just wondering what’s happening in your area, Events will help get you there.

I find it striking that all of the default apps that Apple ships, like Messages, Calendar, and Camera, are being re-done by competitors. Arguably, you could set up your home screen by replacing the defaults completely with competitors: Messenger, Events, Instagram, Google Maps, YouTube, etc. Also: the design of the app is strongly evocative of Apple Maps redesign in iOS 10. Apple have heavy competition on their own platform for the best apps, and while I’m not swayed by Facebook’s offerings particularly, this is great for iOS users.

The Intercept: ‘Apple Logs Your iMessage Contacts — and May Share Them With Police’

The Intercept just published a very thoughtful critique of some seemingly incongruous marketing claims and actual behavior from Apple. Starting with:

Apple promises that your iMessage conversations are safe and out of reach from anyone other than you and your friends. But according to a document obtained by The Intercept, your blue-bubbled texts do leave behind a log of which phone numbers you are poised to contact and shares this (and other potentially sensitive metadata) with law enforcement when compelled by court order.


The fact that Apple is able and willing to help the government map the communications networks of its users doesn’t necessarily undermine the company’s posturing (and record) as a guardian of privacy, though this leaked document provides more detail about how the iMessages system can be monitored than has been volunteered in the past. Ideally, customers wouldn’t need to read documents marked “For Official Use Only” in order to know what information Apple may or may not disclose to the police.

If we take the Apple vs. the FBI on face value, it suggests that Apple will fight the government when it believes it’s the right thing to do and that it can win. What’s also rather interesting about Apple’s communication services is that FaceTime was supposed to be open source, which would allow independent review of the security of the protocol. Sadly, the FaceTime protocol never came to be open-sourced, arguably because of patent-trolling. It still seems true given this new evidence that Apple cannot handover the content of your messages, but some important metadata instead.

Disney could acquire Twitter

Bloomberg via Gruber:

The Walt Disney Co. is working with a financial adviser to evaluate a possible bid for Twitter Inc., according to people familiar with the matter. After receiving interest in discussing a deal, Twitter has started a process to evaluate a potential sale. Inc. is also considering a bid, working with Bank of America on the process, according to other people, who declined to be named because the matter is private.

That makes me a lot more confident in Twitter’s future than a Google bid. Also, a touch of told ya so.

WSJ: ‘Snapchat Releases First Hardware Product, Spectacles’

What does it do? Cut’n’dry, from the Wall Street Journal via Gruber:

When you slip Spectacles on and tap a button near the hinge, it records up to 10 seconds of video from your first-person vantage. Each new tap records another clip.

  1. They look stupid, but so does much of wearable tech and perhaps this is just my taste;
  2. I would not want Snap Inc. to have the power to “see what I see” arbitrarily, I’d like to see the terms of use and privacy policy of these things;
  3. Bluetooth?

Twitter may soon be acquired by Salesforce or Google


David Faber and Anita Balakrishnan, reporting for CNBC:

Twitter shares surged Friday after sources said the ailing social media company moved closer to being sold.

The sources said the company has received expressions of interest from several technology or media companies and may receive a formal bid shortly. The potential suitors include Google and, among other technology companies, sources said.

If this happens, I sure hope it’s Salesforce that buys them, not Google. The news was taken seriously enough that Twitter’s share price closed up 21 percent for the day.

I would much prefer it was a communications, media company, or publishing company, like AT&T, MSNBC, or Advance Publications. For Google, Twitter is a stream to fit ads into; for Salesforce, perhaps a research tool? (Still not entirely sure the Salesforce bid makes any sense.) I’d be much more inclined to use Twitter if it became a communication product, news distribution tool, or a content generation platform, not another advertisement (and therefore surveillance) platform. Ideally: a public utility for free speech funded by the people.

Haptics in the iPhone 7

Graham Spencer for MacStories on the new Taptic Engine functionality with the iPhone 7:

Apple introduced the Taptic Engine with the iPhone 6s, where it replaced the old vibration motor and was also used to provide haptic feedback for when you activated 3D Touch. This year with the iPhone 7, Apple has improved the Taptic Engine and it plays a critical role in simulating the press of the Home button, which is no longer a physical button. But the Taptic Engine in the iPhone 7 goes even further with the introduction of System Haptics, where a number of UI elements in iOS will now also provide tactile haptic feedback when you activate them.

I had forgotten about this change when I first picked up an iPhone 7 while I was passing an Apple Store. Immediately, when I pressed the home button to unlock the phone, I was really taken by surprise at how strange it felt. There was nothing moving, and yet the phone was making it seem like something within it was clicking. I continued to click the button for some time to get a feel for it, and within a couple clicks I was sold: I like the new taptic home button. What I think is especially great about it is that it removes an external moving part and seals the phone there, while still giving the user feedback. Apple have a slogan in one of their recent commercials that illustrates the point perfectly: practically magic. It’s practical, because now it doesn’t matter if you have oily corn-chip-covered fingers when you go to press the home button: there are no creases or cracks for that to slip under and ruin (though please, reconsider touching your $700 with those fingers). It’s magic, because to the user, how it works is completely opaque, it just feel right. Subtle, but I like it.

macOS Sierra ships today


Apple® today announced that macOS™ Sierra, the latest major release of the world’s most advanced desktop operating system, is now available as a free update. macOS Sierra brings Siri® to the Mac® with intelligent and helpful features users know and love from iPhone® and iPad®, along with all-new capabilities designed specifically for use on the desktop. Features like Universal Clipboard, iCloud® Desktop and Documents, Auto Unlock and Apple Pay® on the web help your Mac work even better with other Apple devices. And Photos gets an update with a new Memories feature that automatically creates curated collections of your favorite photos and videos.

The feature I’m most excited for is Auto Unlock!

Samsung Galaxy Note 7 vs. Apple iPhone 7 Plus

Supposedly, part of the reason for the Samsung Galaxy Note 7’s battery problem was that the company was looking to best Apple in a cycle Samsung believed would be dull. Here’s Bloomberg via Gruber:

So the top brass at Samsung Electronics Co., including phone chief D.J. Koh, decided to accelerate the launch of a new phone they were confident would dazzle consumers and capitalize on the opportunity, according to people familiar with the matter. They pushed suppliers to meet tighter deadlines, despite loads of new features, another person with direct knowledge said. The Note 7 would have a high-resolution screen that wraps around the edges, iris-recognition security and a more powerful, faster-charging battery. Apple’s taunts that Samsung was a copycat would be silenced for good.

Putting aside the tragic recall, I was interested in what colossal advantage the Note 7 had over the iPhone 7+ that caused it to fly too close to the sun, so I took a look at some comparisons online. Starting with the battery, the iPhone 7 Plus has 1,960 mAh rated battery, and the Note 7 has a 3500 mAh battery. Samsung’s battery is clearly better. But what about battery life in real-world use? As an example, consider that for Internet browsing on WiFi, the Note 7 lasts 14 hours according the Anandtech and Apple are advertising the iPhone 7 Plus lasts 15 hours. So despite Samsung’s nearly doubly rated battery, it’s arguably the same as the iPhone. Where consumers really care, which is day to day use, the iPhone is a clear victor. In terms of raw technological specifications, the Note 7 clearly wins.

Moving on to the display:

The Samsung Galaxy Note 7 has a stunning 5.7-inch QHD Super AMOLED display. It’s the absolute best in the business, bar none. The Quad HD resolution remains the same as before, for a 518ppi pixel density. Where Samsung has improved things is with the inclusion of Mobile HDR, which leads to an even more vivid, high-contrast picture in your videos.

Conversely, Apple’s mobile display technology remains a bit static. The company opts for the same 4.7-inch display with a 326ppi pixel density for the iPhone 7, and a 5.5-inch display with a 401ppi pixel density for the iPhone 7 Plus. It’s also used the same IPS LCD panel technology for years now, and it finds itself trailing Samsung on pretty much all counts.

The Note 7 is definitely better, especially when you consider that Samsung’s bigger and brighter display is also curved. As far as I can tell, the best use case of a display that dense is virtual reality headsets where the screen will be optically zoomed by lenses and right next to your face, meaning the iPhone’s mere 326ppi screen will show its pixels much before the Note 7’s 518ppi screen. I’d argue most users do not care about this, but indisputably the Note 7’s display is better.

What about the camera?

The Samsung Galaxy Note 7 packs exactly the same camera as the Galaxy S7. We’re talking the same 12-megapixel unit with phase detection, Dual Pixels, OIS, an f/1.7 lens, and a 1/2.6-inch sensor – and we’re not complaining one bit.


But the real advance can be found in the shape of the iPhone 7 Plus, which adds a second camera to the rear of the device. This dual-lens setup combines a telephoto camera with a wide-angle camera – both 12-megapixel – to create an effective optical zoom option. They can also combine to allow you to alter the focus after the picture has been taken, much like a Lytro light field camera.

So roughly equal here in terms of megapixels, with the only obvious advantage being Apple’s optical zoom. This is something Apple clearly got very right: the camera is something that almost everyone cares about, including the people looking to push the limits of what’s possible with a phone.

What about performance? First of all, RAM:

The Galaxy Note 7 does have double the RAM of the iPhone 7 – 4GB versus 2GB, with the iPhone 7 Plus having 3GB, apparently – but that’s never been a particularly useful metric for comparison.

Double is definitely better. What about CPU? (via John Gruber)

iPhone 7/7 Plus 3,450 5,630
Samsung Galaxy S7 1,806 5,213
Samsung Galaxy Note 7 1,786 5,228
Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge 1,744 5,203
Huawei P9 1,729 4,735
OnePlus 3 1,698 4,015

Apple’s the clear victor in CPU benchmarks. But none of this is really what consumers care about. How long does Angry Birds and co. take to load on both devices? I haven’t tried this myself, but embarrassingly, in real-world app launch tests, the new iPhones lap Samsung’s latest offering:

As you can see in the video, the iPhone 7 doesn’t just completely dominate against the Galaxy Note 7 — it laps it by completing its second run of opening the apps before the Galaxy S7 has even finished its first. That’s despite the fact that the iPhone 7 has a mere 2GB of RAM compared to the Galaxy Note 7’s 4GB. It somewhat confirms Apple’s claim that designing software and hardware together improves performance and means the phone can perform well with less RAM.

I’m beginning to see a trend emerging. With the exception of the CPU and camera, the Note 7 is clearly better than the iPhone in a number of ways. (Not to mention it comes with both an audio jack and a smart stylus and a curved display!) But the problem is that Samsung has been trying to improve the phone when they should be improving the user experience. Instead of worrying about the mAh of the battery, they should have been worried about the number of hours on the web or on Netflix that people can have. What I find most embarrassing about this is that Samsung is blaming Apple’s “dull iPhone” for the Note 7’s bad year, and the iPhone is still arguably better in ways that most users care about. Some of these problems are more with Android than with Samsung: those battery life benchmarks reveal that Android seems to be doing double the amount of work that iOS is doing for browsing the web, and that’s not allowing Samsung’s battery marvels to shine. If Samsung ever launches their own mobile operating system which is only 50% better than Android at most tasks users care about, the iPhone would need to be careful. Until then, Apple can ship phones with half the battery life, half the screen resolution, half the RAM, and the same camera as Samsung offerings, and still have the courage left to remove the headphone jack. I’m very happy with my iPhone 6 Plus, but everyone whose getting an iPhone 7 is getting the best smart phone experience money can buy.

iPhone 7 follow up

The on-stage reasons for removing the headphone jack were space, being antiquated, and the advent of wireless. Ben Thompson brought a BuzzFeed article to my attention that goes more in-depth about the space portion of this justification:

Apple executives told BuzzFeed that removing the headphone jack made it possible to bring that image stabilization to the smaller iPhone 7, gave room for a bigger battery, and eliminated a trouble-spot when it came to making the iPhone 7 water-resistant. It’s a solid argument, albeit one not quite worth Schiller’s hubris.

It also adds easier water resistance as a benefit of removing the jack, which I believe is probably true even given the other devices which are water resistant with headphone jacks.

Thompson also raises an excellent point about the iPhone 7 Plus camera. Because there are two sensors, with some clever software which combines triangulated information about the subject with clever guesses about depth, it’s possible to use the iPhone camera to created 3D imagery, even if only very slightly (the greater the space between the two sensors, the more you can triangulate and capture the 3D scene). Here’s how he puts it:

[W]hat Apple didn’t say was that they are releasing the first mass-market virtual reality camera. The same principles that make artificial bokeh possible also go into making imagery for virtual reality headsets. Of course you probably won’t be able to use the iPhone 7 Plus camera in this way — Apple hasn’t released a headset, for one — but when and if they do the ecosystem will already have been primed, and you can bet FaceTime VR will be be an iPhone seller.

What also struck me about this presentation was how conspicuously Schiller brought up machine learning as what powers some of these new features. This, along with artificial intelligence and virtual reality, are the new hotness in the Valley, and it seems to me that Apple is making long-term plays and hedges with the iPhone 7 Plus camera sensor.