Facebook Messenger Can Now Use Face ID; Apple Looks to Periscope Telephoto in 2022; Galaxy Z Flip 5G Bows; Slack Sues Microsoft in EU Over Teams Tie to Office

Facebook has added an extra letter of security for their Messenger product on iPhones and iPads. According to theverge.com, the app itself can now be locked upon or shortly after closing, requiring you to use Face ID or Touch ID or a similar authentication method, giving a robust extra level of protection for your Messenger chats. This may be a real relationship saver for some, but you have to think that people that need to hide chats from a partner or lover ought to rethink their being in a relationship in the first place! Facebook calls the new feature App Lock. the feature is expected to bow on Android in ‘the next few months.’ Facebook is also working on giving users more control concerning who can message them, and will start blurring photos from people who message you without your approval…so you don’t have to, for example, see an unwanted dick pic. Instagram and WhatsApp already have a similar feature. No word on when Messenger will get this particular improvement.

Pop up, or ‘periscope’ lenses have been tried on smartphones before, but never by the likes of an Apple or Samsung. Now, macrumors.com reports that noted analyst Ming-Chi Kuo says Apple is lining up suppliers for a periscope type telephoto lens on the 2022 iPhones. He sees Semco out of Korea and Sunny Optical from China as the likely suppliers. The advantage of a periscope type telephoto lens is that you can get a much higher optical zoom. Many phones have 2X or more optical zoom, then up to 10X in digital zoom, which is noticeably poorer in quality. Right now Huawei has a periscope zoom with 5X optical zoom, and they have a 10X version in the pipeline. Apple has patents on what they call a ‘folded telephoto camera lens system’ dating back to 2016.

The latest, greatest Samsung Galaxy Z Flip has been officially announced, complete with 5G, new colors, and again with an eye-watering price of $1449 (which is actually only a $70 bump over last year). 9to5google.com says the folder gets an upgraded Snapdragon 865+ processor. New colors are ‘Mystic Bronze’ and ‘Mystic Gray.’ It will be available at AT&T, T-Mobile, Best Buy, and Amazon. Samsung says it will be available August 7th.

Slack has brought an antitrust action against Microsoft in Europe, alleging that Redmond is unlawfully leveraging its dominant Office suite to give Microsoft Teams an unfair advantage over collaboration products like Slack’s. According to geekwire.com, Slack is claiming that Microsoft has “created a weak, copycat product and tied it to their dominant Office product, force installing it and blocking its removal, a carbon copy of their illegal behavior during the ‘browser wars.’” Microsoft has yet to respond to the suit, and in the meantime Slack says it is also talking to US authorities about antitrust issues with Microsoft.


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