Archive for September 17, 2021

On iPhone 13 Launch Day In Canada, Apple’s Financing Provider Can’t Handle The Volume 

Posted in Commentary with tags on September 17, 2021 by itnerd

Early this morning I got up early to order my wife an iPhone 13. Product Red and 256 GB for the record with AppleCare+. By 8:08 AM EST, I posted this Tweet:

I had no issues. But the same can’t be said for my fellow Canadians who tried to finance their iPhones. Now I can understand why they would want to do that. The options ranged from just six months to 24 months with 0 percent APR. That’s a great deal to get into a new iPhone. Except that Apple’s finance partner which is Paybright by Affirm have had issues processing the financing requests due to the load that typically happens when pre-orders open for new iPhones. Some people saw ‘502 bad gateway’ errors. Then later this morning Paybright’s website has an error message that read “There is a bit of a traffic jam. Please go back and try again.”

Here’s what I saw on Twitter:

What also doesn’t help is this. Paybright has a Twitter account that is no longer monitored:

Top tip for companies out there. If you have a Twitter account that you no longer monitor and use, delete it. Because having a bunch of people Tweet your unused account is a bad look for you.

Clearly Apple got wind of this and did something about the situation:

What that sounds like to me is that if you are trying to finance an iPhone in Canada, you should just keep trying as it sounds like the issues are being addressed. Or at least mitigated. Though it is unclear when Apple and Paybright will fix this issue outright. Watch this space more updates as I will be watching this situation as the day goes on.

Now this isn’t the first time a new iPhone has been released on planet Earth. Thus Paybright had to have known that whatever server infrastructure they had needed to be seriously beefed up and load balanced to the extreme so that it didn’t melt under the strain of people eager to get the iPhone 13. The fact that they either didn’t beef it up at all or didn’t beef it up enough is a bad reflection on Paybright. And by extension this is a bad reflection on Apple as well who chose Paybright to manage their financing program. My guess is that a bunch of Apple execs are having a conversation with a bunch of Paybright execs to ask “WTF?” and said Paybright execs are about to make a bunch of IT people’s lives a living hell as a result. Because you know what tends to flow downhill.

UPDATE: It’s currently 3PM EST and from my look at Twitter, some people have had success starting again and doing another order. Though I will note that people who have had success had to refresh a ton of times to get an opening for pickup or delivery. Others continue to have no success no matter what they do. Thus if you really want an iPhone 13, you may have to rethink how you pay for it. The bottom line that this is a colossal #EpicFail for both Paybright and Apple, and both have some explaining to do.

A FREE Decryption Tool For The REVil Ransomware Now Available

Posted in Commentary with tags on September 17, 2021 by itnerd

If you got pwned by the REvil criminal group, I have good news for you. A free master decryptor for the REvil ransomware has been released, allowing all victims encrypted before the gang disappeared to recover their files for free:

The REvil master decryptor was created by cybersecurity firm Bitdefender in collaboration with a trusted law enforcement partner. While Bitdefender could not share details about how they obtained the master decryption key or the law enforcement agency involved, they told BleepingComputer that it works for all REvil victims encrypted before July 13th. “As per our blog post, we received the keys from a trusted law enforcement partner, and unfortunately, this is the only information we are at liberty to disclose right now,” Bitdefender’s Bogdan Botezatu, Director of Threat Research and Reporting, told BleepingComputer. “Once the investigation progresses and will come to an end, further details will be offered upon approval.” REvil ransomware victims can download the master decryptor from Bitdefender (instructions) and decrypt entire computers at once or specify specific folders to decrypt.

Some of this does sound a bit sketchy, but it is still good news. You should have a look if you’ve been pwned by this criminal organization. Hopefully more tools like this get released as this will allow people to not pay the scumbags behind these ransomware attacks.

The iPhone 13 & iPhone 13 Pro Are Now Available For Pre-Order From TELUS

Posted in Commentary with tags , on September 17, 2021 by itnerd

TELUS will offer the best-ever lineup of iPhone and iPad, including the innovative and elegant iPhone 13 Pro, iPhone 13 Pro Max, iPhone 13, and iPhone 13 mini, on the fastest network in Canada. Redesigned inside and out, iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max introduce the most advanced pro camera system ever on iPhone, Super Retina XDR display with ProMotion, improved battery life, the Apple-designed A15 Bionic chip with 5-core GPU, and an advanced 5G experience. iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 mini feature the most advanced dual camera system ever in iPhone and powerhouse A15 Bionic chip in a sleek and durable design. Customers will be able to pre-order the iPhone 13 lineup on September 17, with availability on September 24. For complete pricing and availability details, please visit telus.com/iphone13.

Featuring an advanced 5G experience with more 5G bands, the iPhone 13 lineup works in more places on 5G for greater coverage and performance. Available in four stunning finishes — graphite, gold, silver, and the all-new sierra blue — iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max introduce an all-new Super Retina XDR display with ProMotion featuring an adaptive refresh rate up to 120Hz, making the touch experience even faster and more responsive. They also introduce the best battery life ever on iPhone with iPhone 13 Pro Max, lasting up to two and a half hours longer in a day than iPhone 12 Pro Max, a new storage capacity of 1TB, and are protected by the Ceramic Shield front cover, tougher than any smartphone glass. With new Ultra Wide, Wide, and Telephoto cameras, the pro camera system gets its biggest advancement ever capturing stunning photos and video, powered by the Apple-designed A15 Bionic. These technologies enable impressive new photo capabilities like macro photography on the new Ultra Wide camera and up to 2.2x improved low-light performance on the new Wide camera, and new computational photography features like Photographic Styles to personalize the look of images in the Camera app, and Night mode on all cameras. Video takes a huge leap forward, offering Cinematic mode for beautiful depth-of-field transitions, macro video, Time-lapse and Slo-mo, and even better low-light performance. Both models also offer end-to-end pro workflows in Dolby Vision, and for the first time, ProRes, only available on iPhone.

The next generation iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 mini feature a beautiful design with sleek flat edges in five gorgeous new colors — pink, blue, midnight, starlight, and (PRODUCT)RED. Both models feature major innovations including the most advanced dual-camera system ever on iPhone — with a new Wide camera with bigger pixels and sensor-shift optical image stabilization offering improvements in low light photos and videos, a new way to personalize the camera with Photographic Styles, and Cinematic mode, which brings a new dimension to video storytelling. Equipped with the Apple designed A15 Bionic, iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 mini also boast super-fast performance and power efficiency, longer battery life, a brighter Super Retina XDR display that brings content to life, incredible durability with the Ceramic Shield front cover, double the entry-level storage at 128GB, an industry-leading IP68 rating for water resistance, and an advanced 5G experience.

By the end of the year, more than 70% of the Canadian population will experience TELUS’ blazing fast 5G network. In Opensignal’s first Canada 5G User Experience Report 2021, which analyzed Canada’s next-generation networks, TELUS took home six awards including Fastest 5G Download and Upload Speeds, Best 5G Video Experience, Best Voice App Experience and Best 5G Availability nationwide. Additionally, TELUS recently earned the top spot in Ookla’s 2021 Fastest Mobile Network Speedtest Awards for the fifth year in a row, inclusive of both download and upload speeds. These achievements, along with the numerous, sustained accolades TELUS has earned over the years, showcase the strength and speed of TELUS’ global-leading mobile network. 

TELUS and Koodo customers who purchase an iPhone 13 are eligible to receive up to six months free of Apple TV+ and Apple Arcade. This offer is only available at TELUS to new customers as well as existing customers who upgrade their device. 

TELUS customers can also take advantage of our Bring-It-Back program and receive up to $810 off depending on the device, when they agree to return it in good working condition to TELUS at the end of their two-year term. To save even more, customers can sign up for TELUS’ Trade-In Program, where customers will receive a credit for their old device, up to $825.

For more details on pricing and data plans, please visit telus.com/iphone13. The iPhone 13 lineup will also be available at Koodo on 4G LTE.