Consumers can buy a refurbished 256GB iPhone XS for $829 instead of the original price of $1,049. The refurbished iPhone XS with 64GB storage costs $699 compared with $899, while the iPhone XS 512GB costs $999 instead of $1,249.
The refurbished iPhone XS Max with 64GB storage costs $799, or $200 less than the original $999 price. The iPhone XS Max with 256GB costs $929, down from $1,149, while the iPhone XS Max with 512GB can be purchased for $999, down from $1,249.
The polished up iPhone XS models are only available in Apple’s US store and have not appeared in other markets such as the UK, Germany or Australia.
Apple says the refurbished iPhone models come with a one-year warranty, a new battery, and new outer shell. The devices have undergone “full functional testing”, cleaning, and have genuine Apple replacement parts where necessary.
iPhone fans on a budget can also buy the refurbished iPhone X from 2017 for up to $350 less than the original price. The iPhone X with 64GB storage costs $599 compared with $899. The refurbished iPhone X with 256GB storage costs $699 compared with $1,049.
While the used and buffed-up iPhone XS and XS Max models aren’t cheap, Apple’s prices are lower than the refurbished iPhone X models when Apple started offering them in February 2019. Back then, the 64GB iPhone X cost $769 while the 256GB model cost $899.
But consumers will still need to weigh up the cost of buying a brand new iPhone 11 or iPhone 11 Pro. The higher-end iPhone 11 Pro starts at $999 for the 64GB model and features a newer A13 Bionic chip, three rear cameras, and OLED display. The 256GB model costs $1,149, while the 512GB model costs $1,349.
The LCD display iPhone 11, the equivalent of the iPhone XR, costs $699 for the 64GB model, $749 for the 128GB model, and $849 for the 256GB model.
If you’re a Sonos fan from way back, then you probably have an older Play:5, Bridge or Zone player laying around, and now the company is telling you that it won’t get any more updates — ever. Even worse, simply continuing to use one of them could hold back your entire setup, new devices included, from receiving future updates. While the company says it’s working on a way to segment older hardware and avoid that situation, there’s enough bad news and uncertainty going around to make the situation real uncomfortable.
However things shake out for Sonos, I’m just looking around the room at various TV boxes, speakers and wristbands, trying to figure out how much time they have left.
Now we’ve seen the next Xbox from the front, everyone is wondering what’s hiding on the other side. Pictures posted to gaming forum NeoGAF appear to show an Xbox Series X development kit in the wild, complete with a back plate lacking the Xbox One’s HDMI-passthrough setup. We’ll see if this alleged prototype holds up when the real hardware ships later this year, but for now all we have are rumors and speculation.
Apple might launch a new low-cost iPhone very, very soon. According to Bloomberg, the tech giant’s suppliers will start assembling a more affordable iPhone model, the first since the iPhone SE, as soon as February. Apple will reportedly unveil the cheaper-than-an-iPhone 11 device in March. Sources expect it to look like the iPhone 8, with a 4.7-inch screen and a current generation A13 chip, like 2019’s iPhones. Expect a return of the home button, and no Face ID.
After years of resistance, Studio Ghibli is bringing its works to streaming services. In the US, it will launch in HBO’s Max service, while Netflix will stream the Japanese animations everywhere else, except Japan. Nick Summers explains why this is good news for all.
Activity Bubbles, Screen Stopwatch and Envelope are all part of the latest push from Google to get you to put your phone down (after you finish reading this, of course). The first two add on-screen reminders of how much time you’ve spent staring at a screen, while Envelope creates some physical separation. Do the apps go too far? Do they not go far enough? I can’t stay off my phone for long enough to check.
Uber is testing another new feature in what is presumably a bid to help mitigate the restrictions of Assembly Bill 5, which requires the company to treat its drivers as employees, not independent contractors. Some drivers in California will now have the ability to set their own fares.
Apple may encrypt your iOS device’s locally stored data, but it doesn’t fully encrypt iCloud backups. According to Reuters sources, Apple dropped end-to-end encryption plans for iCloud, fearing another FBI confrontation. (This was following the debate over unlocking Syed Farook’s iPhone after the San Bernardino shooting.) One former Apple worker said the company might have ditched the plan over concerns customers could be locked out of their data more often.
That doesn’t mean your iCloud backup is open to all — anything in your Keychain, including passwords, as well as health data and payment information are all end-to-end encrypted.
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President Donald Trump, in a CNBC interview Wednesday, stepped up his pressure over Apple‘s refusal to unlock iPhones for authorities in criminal cases.
“Apple has to help us. And I’m very strong on it,” Trump told “Squawk Box” co-host Joe Kernen from the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. “They have the keys to so many criminals and criminal minds, and we can do things.”
Apple CEO Tim Cook has been credited with being able to work with the president and his administration in a way other Silicon Valley companies have stumbled. In November, Cook toured Apple’s Austin campus with Trump.
Trump told CNBC he’s helped Apple a lot.
“I’ve given them waivers, because it’s a great company, but it made a big difference.” The president was referring to waivers from tariffs put on Chinese-made imports in the trade war between Washington and Beijing.
Last week, Trump slammed Apple for declining the government’s request to unlock password-protected iPhones used by the shooter who killed three people in December at the Pensacola, Florida, Naval Air Station before being fatally shot.
In a statement, Apple said it provided gigabytes of information to law enforcement related to the Pensacola case but that it would not build a “backdoor” or specialized software to give law enforcement elevated access.
Trump told CNBC on Wednesday: “They could have given us that information. It would have been very helpful.”
The president said he’s not concerned about his relationship with Cook or Apple because the stakes are so high.
“You’re dealing with drug lords and you’re dealing with terrorists, and if you’re dealing with murderers, I don’t care,” Trump said.
With the tablet-like Galaxy Fold, Samsung’s embraced the saying, “Go big or go home.” But its second foldable phone — rumored to be called the Galaxy Z Flip — is almost guaranteed to be cheaper, smaller, vertically bending and outfitted with half the cameras. I couldn’t be more excited.
There’s something about foldable phones that still feels magical to me, a sensation that’s hard to come by after nearly 14 years working with phones. I thought I’d seen it all: phones that flip up, kick out, flex, even phones shaped like a circle. But a screen that’s both thin and strong enough to bend in half without breaking feels like the future come to life.
Where the Galaxy Fold was a luxury device designed to make a splash as the first major foldable phone, the Z Flip (internal code name: Galaxy Bloom) will take on the Motorola Razr as a more affordable phone that highlights not the luxury, but the practicality of a foldable phone. It’s likely Samsung will unveil the Galaxy Z Flip at it Unpacked event on Feb. 11.
For Samsung, the Z Flip will give the company a dramatic lead in the foldable space, with a large premium device (the Galaxy Fold) followed by a simpler phone with a smaller screen. That’s two pathways for Samsung to secure interest from early adopters. For the rest of us, there are several practical reasons to train our eyes on the Galaxy Z Flip, or whatever it winds up being called, that go way beyond the novelty of a foldable phone.
It’d be interesting to see how completely a glass screen would bend. Could the two sides really fold flat? I’d also love to test firsthand the screen’s ability to keep the electronic display underneath safe from pressure, scratches, drops, dust and water damage.
Now playing: Watch this:
The bendable glass that’s shaping up to cover foldable…
Foldable phones are still a proof of concept
Right now, foldable phones inhabit a zone of uncertainty. They’re expensive, fragile and few. At this point it’s hard to believe that they could replace the large-screen rectangles we carry today, but there are hints it just might work.
The more foldable phones exist — both in design and in total number of units made — the more we can see if they’ll actually take off. Or if they’re just fun, expensive toys. The Z Flip will be one more effort that helps determine the fate of the category.
The variety we see already in early foldable designs is crucial. We’ve seen commercial devices and prototypes for small foldables like the Razr, which can slip into a pocket, all the way up to a 10-inch tablet that folds into three parts.
It will be through real-time trial and error that the industry determines which designs work best, how to fix common weaknesses and what it is that people actually want in a foldable phone. Only then can companies collectively begin to perfect them.
This is Samsung’s chance to prove it can make a sturdy foldable
An embarrassment for Samsung, the Galaxy Fold’s early screen flaws overshadowed its historic debut. Samsung delayed the initial sale date for months, redesigned the phone, scaled back production and dropped two colors. Now with the rumored Galaxy Z Flip, Samsung gets a second chance.
Choosing a radically different design — the Galaxy Z Flip should be a vertical flip phone with a smaller screen than the 7.3-inch Galaxy Fold — gives Samsung an opportunity to apply the lessons it learned from the Fold’s early mistakes.
Tight seals between the display and the folding mechanism, tamper-proof cover material and a reinforced OLED display will go a long way toward reestablishing its reputation in the foldable space. It should also have fewer cameras and a cheaper price tag than the Fold’s $1,980 starting price.
Finding the limits of a small outer screen
Like the Galaxy Fold and the Motorola Razr, the Galaxy Z Flip should have an external display, and I’m interested to see how Samsung will design it. On both the Fold and the Razr, the screen was relatively small, making it fine for viewing alerts and initiating quick tasks, but less ideal to actually use.
If the Galaxy Z Flip goes even smaller than the Galaxy Fold’s 4.6-inch exterior screen, I’ll have a few questions. Will you still be able to use every app on the outer display and open it to reveal the app inside, or will your actions and activities be more limited?
I’ll have to wait for its debut to find out.
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Motorola Razr is futuristic and familiar
Lower prices will make foldable phones more accessible
With the Galaxy Fold priced at $1,980, the foldable Z Flip is expected to cost significantly less.
Samsung was clear about calling the Galaxy Fold a luxury handset, which somewhat cushioned the news that it would cost nearly $2,000. The messaging was this: It’s worth it for a futuristic device that’s big enough to replace a tablet.
The Galaxy Z Flip is sure to be another case entirely. One rumor suggested it could cost around $850, which is half the price of the Motorola Razr and more than half the price of the Galaxy Fold.
We’ll see what happens, but one thing is clear: The more affordable they are, the more Samsung and its competitors will snag more real-world buyers (or “testers”). And the more people who use these early foldable phones, the faster we’ll know where their future truly lies — in pockets and purses all over the globe, or in a museum of futuristic tech that never panned out.
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