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FCC listing indicates Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra features S Pen support – MobileSyrup

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A new FCC listing mentions that Samsung’s still-unannounced Galaxy S21 Ultra can be used with the S Pen stylus.

The listing was discovered by Android Authority and came in a test report for a handset that features the model number ‘SMG998B.’ S Pen support for at least some of Samsung’s S Series smartphones has been hinted at by Samsung mobile chief TM Roh.

The test report notes an EUT (Equipment Under Test) device that can be used with an S Pen in both hover and click modes.

“The EUT can also used with a stylus device (S Pen). The EUT operates with the S Pen in two different inductive coupling modes of S Pen motion detection (Hover and Click) operating in the range of 0.53 — 0.6MHz,” reads the report.

Further, the listing indicates that the phone will feature wireless power transfer (reverse charging), Wi-Fi 6E and Ultra-Wideband (UWB). Reportedly, UWB will be used with the S21 Ultra to locate objects, open doors and offer personalized car experiences.

Samsung will reportedly launch the S21 series on January 14th. MobileSyrup will have more on Samsung’s Galaxy S21 series in the coming weeks.

Source: Android Authority 

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Apple iOS 14.4 Release: Should You Upgrade? – Forbes

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Apple iOS 14.4 has been released and it is perhaps the most important iOS 14 update yet for iPhone owners. Why should you upgrade ASAP? Here’s everything you need to know. 

Tip: bookmark this page because I will keep it up to date if/when new problems are found. I will deliver my final verdict in a week. 

Who Is It For?

Apple iOS 14.4 is available for all iOS 13-compatible devices. This means the iPhone 6S and newer and 7th generation iPod touch. If you don’t receive an automatic update notification, you can trigger the update manually by navigating to Settings > General > Software Update. Beta testers, if you are running a later version of iOS 14 when you read this (see ‘The Road Ahead’ section at the end), you must unenroll your iPhone before iOS 14.4 will show up.

iPad owners, Apple has moved you to iPadOS. This is not an iPadOS-focused guide, but I will touch upon pertinent issues in these guides. 

The Deal Breakers

As always, jailbreakers may want to avoid this release. Popular jailbreaker Unc0ver remains stuck on iOS 13.5 while checkra1n has an iOS 14 jailbreak (not iOS 14.4), but it is limited to Apple devices running A9(X) chipsets and older. 

Aside from this, however, the signs look good and initial reaction on social media and message boards to the release has been positive. Notably, the serious messaging problems impacting earlier versions of iOS 14 appear to have been eradicated at last (despite no mention of a fix in the official release notes, which isn’t uncommon). 

What I am seeing are reports of performance lag, particularly in terms of animations (something which was present in the betas) and a higher than normal number of complaints about battery drain (1,2,3,4,5 etc). Battery drain is often higher after updating to a new version of iOS while the system reindexes so there is no reason to panic, but it is something to keep an eye on. 

So What Do You Get?

Apple lists the following new features in iOS 14.4: 

  • Smaller QR codes can be recognized by Camera
  • Option to classify Bluetooth device type in Settings for correct identification of headphones for audio notifications
  • Notifications for when the camera on your ‌iPhone‌ is unable to be verified as a new, genuine Apple camera in ‌iPhone 12‌, iPhone 12 mini, ‌iPhone 12 Pro‌ and iPhone 12 Pro Max

This release also fixes the following issues:

  • Image artifacts could appear in HDR photos taken with ‌iPhone 12 Pro‌
  • Fitness widget may not display updated Activity data
  • Typing may be delayed and word suggestions may not appear in the keyboard
  • The keyboard may not come up in the correct language in Messages
  • Audio stories from the News app in CarPlay may not resume after being paused for spoken directions or Siri
  • Enabling Switch Control in Accessibility may prevent phone calls from being answered from the Lock Screen

While all these updates are fairly self explanatory, the real importance of iOS 14.4 is buried away on Apple’s official security page. This update fixes three new vulnerabilities (CVE-2021-1782, CVE-2021-1871 and CVE-2021-1870), all of which are known to hackers and “may have already been actively exploited.” 

One flaw was found in the operating system’s Kernel, while two others were discovered in WebKit, which powers the Safari web browser. Apple has not revealed detailed information about the flaws and is unlikely to do so before users have a chance to upgrade. Consequently, iOS 14.4 is an update iPhone users (and iPadOS 14.4 users) should take seriously. 

Note: it is unclear at this stage whether the exploits are also in older versions of iOS beyond iOS 14.3, but I would assume so. 

Apple iOS 14.4 Verdict: Upgrade

Apple iOS 14.4 is not the most exciting ‘major point’ update (certainly compared to feature-packed iOS 14.3), but it is significantly more important due to the actively exploited flaws that have been found. 

Crucially, early feedback from users who have upgraded is positive with no obvious deal breakers so far so I would advise updating as soon as possible. I will keep this guide updated should that change and, for those who are highly cautious about updating, I will offer my final verdict in a week. 

The Road Ahead 

No new iOS versions are currently in testing at the time of publication. An iOS 14.4.1 bugfix is possible, if the battery problems are shown to be more than the usual drain associated with iOS updates, but otherwise I would expect iOS 14.5 to enter testing relatively soon. 

___

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WhatsApp rolls out biometric authentication for web and desktop platforms – MobileSyrup

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Facebook-owned WhatsApp is rolling out a new biometric authentication feature for PC and web access to enhance security.

“Today we’re starting to roll out a new security feature for WhatsApp Web and Desktop: face and fingerprint unlock when linking devices,” the company said in a tweet.

This extra layer of security is meant to prevent others from linking to your account without your permission or knowledge.

WhatsApp notes that it does not see your face or fingerprint data. The app will now ask users to go through an authentication process when they link their account to WhatsApp Web or Desktop. Once your identity is verified, you’ll be asked to scan a QR code.

The current process for linking just relies on a QR code, so the additional security step should help ensure that your account is secure. It’s worth noting that the new feature will only work if your device has enabled biometric authentication.

WhatsApp notes that the feature will work with all iPhones operating iOS 14 and above. In terms of Android devices, it’ll work on any phone compatible with biometric authentication.

The company recently delayed its upcoming privacy policy amid confusion regarding what it entails. WhatsApp is trying to reassure users that it can’t read users’ messages, as thousands of users are switching to its competitors, such as Signal and Telegram.

Source: WhatsApp

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Apple’s Quarterly Revenue Surpasses $100 Billion For First Time – Baystreet.ca

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Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) has reported blockbuster results and announced that its quarterly revenue topped $100 billion U.S. for the first time, fueled by strong holiday sales of the new iPhone 12.

Apple reported that its sales jumped 21% to $111.4 billion U.S. in the period ended December 26, the Cupertino, California-based technology company said on Thursday after markets closed. Analysts, on average, had expected revenue of $103.1 billion U.S., according to data compiled by Bloomberg News. Apple’s profit was $1.68 U.S. a share, also topping Wall Street estimates.

For the fourth quarter in a row, Apple didn’t provide a revenue forecast for the current period. The company previously cited uncertainty from the COVID-19 pandemic in choosing not to provide forward sales projections.

Expectations have been high for Apple since it unveiled its 5G enabled iPhone 12 and with suggestions of a new iPhone “super cycle.” Apple also recently introduced other new devices, including an updated Apple Watch, and demand increased for iPads, Mac computers and services from consumers working and studying from home during the pandemic.

As expected, Apple’s revenue was propelled by the iPhone 12, the first iPhone line to include four new models and 5G capabilities. Handset sales for the quarter came in at $65.6 billion U.S., easily beating Wall Street estimates of $60.3 billion U.S.

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