Some WWDC Highlights; Google-Suit Over Pixel 3 Issues; Tesla Autopilot Price Changes & Battery Day Delay

Among many software announcements today at Apple’s WWDC, an overshadowing announcement was the rumored one about hardware…Apple will be transitioning to its own silicon and away from Intel chips. According to theverge.com, the Apple system on a chip Macs should be out by the end of the year. Developers got access to the upcoming Mac OS- Big Sur- and can apply to get a Mac Mini with the new system in it to develop apps and software. This will be version 11.0, marking the end of OS 10 (or X). Apple claims blinding speed improvements (of course) and other advances, but a couple noted items are that present apps for Intel Macs will be automatically converted to run on the new Macs, and the new system will run iOS apps natively…as well as allow running of Linux in a window on the Macs. the new MacOS will have a freshened look, a new control center, and a number of other changes. Siri now appears at the bottom of the screen, instead of taking over the whole damned thing. Apple also touted their coming version of Google’s Transate, with 11 languages to start off.

iOS 14 was also shown off, and gets a new home screen with widgets, an ‘App Library’ that organizes your apps into groups and lists…kind of like the present folders, but automatic and much more elegant. You can also hide apps on the main screen. iOs 14 will run on all iPhones from 6s and 6s Plus forward. A bonus: phone calls will no longer hog your entire screen! Bonus #2: you will FINALLY be able to set 3rd party browsers and mail apps as your default!

WatchOS 7 gets sleep tracking, and adds a ‘wind down’ feature that minimizes features for an evening winding down routine.

Apple also spent a significant amount of time during the keynote touting improvements across their software and hardware to strengthen privacy for users.

A class action suit is looming against Google over Pixel 3 issues that some have had since 2018. 9to5google.com reports that a law firm, Chimicles Schwartz Kriner & Donaldson-Smith LLP is looking into alleged defects like one which causes the phone to quickly and unexpectedly drain battery power and then immediately shut down. There have also been reports that the phone’s camera app shakes and vibrates, resulting in poor quality videos and photos. Other consumers report that the camera app will crash altogether. If it determines that the issues are hardware related, the class action may be filed. If you have had any such issues, you can fill out a form at their website: https://chimicles.com/google-pixel-3-class-action-investigation/

Elon Musk Tweeted yesterday about some pricing changes for Autopilot, and also confirmed a rumor that the feature may one day be subscription based. CNET.com says Tesla owners that don’t have Autopilot can add it for the discounted price of $2000 until July 1st. The Full Self-Driving option can be obtained at a discount until July 1st also. It has been $7000, and will bet a bump to $8000 after July. Musk did confirm that Autopilot will eventually be offered as a subscription, but said ‘it will be economically better to have bought FSD.’ Musk also said Battery Day and the shareholders meeting scheduled for July 7th has been pushed back until maybe a month later….depending on if large gatherings are to be allowed by then or not. Musk plans to hold it in Fremont whenever it finally happens.



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