How have iOS 14 details been circulating months ahead of time when Apple is normally eager to crack down on leaks? It apparently comes down to someone willing to spend a tidy sum of money. Motherboardsources say the iOS 14 leak originated from someone buying a developer-only iPhone 11 in China for “thousands of dollars.” The software version dated back to December, but someone extracted it and has distributed it to researchers and hackers since “at least” February.
Apple has declined to comment.
It’s difficult to say how much the leak will affect (or reflect) the finished iOS 14 release. Apple isn’t expected to preview iOS 14 until WWDC in June, and it’s entirely possible the company has cut or changed features in the past several months. It could likewise be difficult to assess security flaws when they might be fixed by launch. Still, this is unusually early access to the software — this could help with security assessments, but it could also spoil the debut and give hackers more time to find exploits.
The loose code also underscores the challenges Apple has when clamping down on leaks. Like with many companies, its product development depends on a large chain of suppliers and other partners — it only takes one less-than-scrupulous person to reveal secrets. While Apple can take steps to minimize the chances of leaks, it may be difficult to completely avoid breaches like this in the future.
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The new MacBook Air 2020 is equipped with Apple’s own M1 processor by default, but there are two GPU versions with 7 or 8 cores. We have both units in our editorial office and had the chance to compare the two iGPUs. Is the 8-core model worth the additional price?
The new MacBook Air (Late 2020) has finally arrived. It looks the same, but there is a very interesting change inside the chassis. Apple announced it in the beginning of the year, and we have speculated about this in our last review of the MacBook Air with an Intel CPU: Apple now uses its own ARM processors. All versions of the new MacBook Air are equipped with the M1 chip, but there are differences in terms of the integrated graphics unit. The base model for $999 has 7 GPU cores, while the more expensive unit for $1249 has 8 GPU cores. We now have both models in our hands and were able to perform some initial benchmarks.
Both the M1 chip as well as macOS Big Sur are still very new, so not alle benchmarks are available as native apps yet, some benchmarks are still emulated Intel version. During our initial tests, this worked well in general, but there can still be some smaller issues.
The results of the two versions are usually very close to each other and we rarely see a difference of more than 10%. We have also included the results of the current MacBook Pro 16 with the Radeon 5500M, which is still faster, but the differences are not huge. Considering that the M1 chip inside the MacBook Air is completely passively cooled, these results are very impressive. The new A14 chip in the Apple iPad Air 2020 on the other hand is clearly beaten by the M1 chip.
We have decided to use the game Borderlands 3 for our initial tests, because it allows a fair comparison thanks to its integrated benchmark. The game is emulated, but it worked very well in general. The only problem was when we tried to end the game, when the system sometimes froze and required a restart.
The low preset still shows a pretty big advantage for the 8-core GPU, but the results between the two models are very close in the more demanding quality presets. The comparison with the rivals is much more interesting. For starters, the old MacBook Pro 15 with the 560X is hardly any faster, and both the Nvidia GeForce MX350 as well as the Intel Xe Graphics (96 EUs) from the current Tiger Lake chips are clearly beaten in higher quality settings.
The performance of the M1 GPU was surprisingly stable in a first stress test, but we want to perform more benchmarks before we can give our final verdict on this topic. We will also test more games with the new M1 chip for our final review.
Our initial tests clearly show that Apple’s new M1 chip offers a significant performance improvement over the old MacBook Air powered by Intel CPUs. The annoying chassis fan is finally gone as well, so the new MacBook Air is a completely silent device. It is also the only MacBook with dedicated function keys and no TouchBar.
The choice of the GPU (or the number of cores) does not really matter to be honest. It really depends on the storage you want. If 256 GB is sufficient for you, then you can go ahead and get the entry-level SKU with 7 GPU cores. If you prefer 512 GB, however, you can upgrade the entry-level SKU, but it would make more sense just to get the more expensive unit with the 8-core GPU instead.
We are currently working on the review of the new MacBook Air. The initial results are definitely promising. Please leave us a comment if you have special questions or suggestions for the review.
Got your eye on a pair of AirPods Pro wireless earbuds? They’re normally $249 but Walmart is slashing the price to only $169from November 25 at 7pm ET. Yes, Black Friday has come early.
The Walmart Black Friday deal not only saves you $80 – it crushes the the price of the AirPods Pro to the cheapest we’ve ever seen.
The AirPods Pro come with a wireless charging case and noise-canceling tech, and pair seamlessly with iPhones. There’s no word on how long this $169 AirPods Pro Walmart deal will last, so you better be quick come 7pm ET.
AirPods Pro Black Friday deal
AirPods Pro $249 $169 at Walmart November 25 7pm ET: Under review, we called the AirPods Pro “exceptionally comfortable” and praised their “strong noise-cancelling and balanced, easy-going sound”. As well suited to a long-haul flight as they are to a run around the block, they could be the only pair of headphones you ever need.
The AirPods Pro earbuds are a step up from the standard AirPods. You get noise cancellation onboard, for blocking out background noise, and different sized ear tips for finding the perfect size. That was one of the main criticisms of the normal AirPods – their one size fit some people fine, but not others.
They sound better than the standard AirPods, too. Apple still favors a neutral tonal balance, rather than tipping the scales in the direction of bass, but that easygoing nature is especially good with lower-quality streams. They also have a spaciousness that’s rare with in-ear headphones, which allows the instruments room to breathe.
In a tweet sent out earlier today, Sony has reassured its fans that more PlayStation 5 inventory will be coming to retailers before the end of the year. At the moment, both the regular and digital editions of PS5 are completely sold out worldwide.
From Amazon to Walmart, no retailer can keep enough in stock to satisfy demand. As a result, the console is selling at nearly double its retail price in the resell market.
Calling the PlayStation 5 its “biggest console launch ever,” Sony said that the demand for PS5 is unprecedented and that “more PS5 inventory will be coming to retailers before the end of the year.”
We want to thank gamers everywhere for making the PS5 launch our biggest console launch ever. Demand for PS5 is unprecedented, so we wanted to confirm that more PS5 inventory will be coming to retailers before the end of the year – please stay in touch with your local retailers.
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