Archive for June 7, 2022

Apple To Be Forced By The EU To Switch From Lighting To USB-C

Posted in Commentary with tags on June 7, 2022 by itnerd

The iPhone has been using the Lightning cable standard forever. The problem with that is that it’s not only one more cable to carry around (though I will admit that it’s a cable that can be shared with my AirPods Pro which makes it marginally more useful), it’s also slow as it’s based on USB 2.0. Which was fine when it was released in 2012, but is beyond lame in 2022. Especially with iPhones capable of shooting ProRes video which takes forever to pull off an iPhone due to the massive size of ProRes files. Thus I am very happy that the European Union agreed on this today:

That’s right, Apple will be forced to switch to USB-C by 2024. Now while they could in theory come out with a EU only phone to satisfy this requirement, they likely won’t as I can’t see Apple doing an “EU only” phone even though they have done Chinese specific phones in the past. Thus my thinking is that it will likely be USB-C on iPhone regardless of where it is sold.

Or will it play out that way?

In my mind, Apple won’t want to go down this road unless they have no other option. And it has nothing to do with their MFi program where they license accessories from third parties that use their tech. Frankly, the cash that they get from that is likely a rounding error for Apple. But the real reason in my mind is that it’s because Apple would lose control of how iPhones are charged and how data is transferred to and from iPhones. Because if there’s one thing that Apple loves, it’s control. Thus I can see a scenario where the iPhone goes port-less rather than Apple being forced to adopt USB-C. After all, there have been consistent rumours over the last couple of years of Apple working on something along those lines. Thus I can see Apple responding to this move by the EU by going down that road regardless of how consumer unfriendly that it would be. If you want an example of that, take a look at the Apple Watch. Downgrading to an earlier version of watchOS for example requires you to send the entire watch back to Apple. A similar process on the iPhone is trivial and only requires a cable and can be done by end users. I for one hope that Apple abandons this idea. Though I can totally see them doing it as early as next year simply so that they can maintain control and thumb their noses at the EU.

Here’s the counterpoint to that argument. Apple has USB-C on MacBooks, iPads, and even the HomePod mini. And Apple could just say that the gig is up and just make the move to USB-C. That would make consumers happy. And it would make the EU happy. And Apple is rumoured to be testing iPhones with USB-C at present. Thus it’s plausible that this switch to USB-C is already in progress at 1 Apple Park. Though I can completely see Apple putting an Apple style “twist” on their implementation of USB-C on the iPhone so that they maintained some level of control, or gain some sort of competitive advantage. Though that may risk the wrath of the anti-trust gods if they did do that. Regardless, if Apple were to do this, we could see it as early as next year’s iPhone.

I for one am happy that the EU took this stance as it may result in less cables in my laptop bag. And I bet that a lot of consumers feel this way as well. It will be interesting to see how Apple responds to this. Though that response outside of a press release or a comment to the media may take a while to come.

Beanfield Acquires Wesley Clover’s Eclipse Trading Turret Solutions

Posted in Commentary with tags on June 7, 2022 by itnerd

Today, Beanfield Metroconnect has announced its acquisition of the entire family of Eclipse trading communication products from Wesley Clover Solutions. 

By incorporating this powerful, yet fully portable, cloud-based turret system into its telecommunications offering, Beanfield can now help financial services customers to transition from legacy to next generation communications solutions, and realize their digital transformation goals while reducing risk, complexity, and cost. 

Beanfield customers already enjoy access to the private Trader Link SIP Network, connecting the Canadian financial markets from coast to coast, as well as industry-leading low latency routes between all key Financial hubs, and Cloud Connect services to all major cloud infrastructure ecosystems and SaaS providers.

Beanfield will showcase the latest Trading Floor Solutions, a fully hosted, all-in-one communications system – with the cloud-based turret system integrated – at the TMX Equities Trading Conference on June 8, 2022 in Toronto. 

Apple’s New M2 Processor…. Is Your M1 Obsolete?

Posted in Commentary with tags on June 7, 2022 by itnerd

Yesterday, Apple announced the M2 processor which is the successor to the M1 processor. It was dropped into a new MacBook Air and a 13″ MacBook Pro. And the second that this was announced, I got a bunch of emails from people asking if the M1, M1 Pro, M1 Max, or M1 Ultra based Mac has been made obsolete?

First of all, let’s hit the specs:

  • This new processor is a 8 core CPU made up of 4 high efficiency cores and 4 performance cores. But all of those cores come with more cache and memory bandwidth. This according to Apple delivers 18% greater multithreaded performance versus the M1.
  • Where things diverge a bit is that there’s an 8 core GPU version which you should totally ignore, and a 10 core GPU version that will give you a 25% improvement in graphics performance versus the M1 at the same power level or 35% better at max power. At least Apple says that. Nobody has benchmarked it just yet.
  • The Neural Engine of the M2 can process up to 15.8 trillion operations per second. Which is over 40 percent more than M1 says Apple.
  • The media engine includes a higher-bandwidth video decoder, supporting 8K H.264 and HEVC video. Which is better than the M1…. And that likely implies that the iPhone 14 is going to do 8K video as the processor in that iPhone whenever it ships will likely br based on similar silicon.
  • Apple’s ProRes video engine enables playback of multiple streams of both 4K and 8K video. Again implying that the iPhone 14 is going to get 8K video.
  • Apple’s latest Secure Enclave provides “best-in-class security”. Which is Apple’s way of saying that they fixed this mostly harmless flaw and likely a few other things we don’t know about.
  • A new image signal processor (ISP) that delivers better image noise reduction for those Zoom and Teams calls.
  • You can spec it with a max of 24 GB of RAM up from the 16 GB in the M1. And at first glance, the memory upgrade prices seem reasonable by Apple standards. That’s not to say that it’s cheap. They’re just not gouging you for nearly as much this time around.
  • It only supports Thunderbolt 3 instead of Thunderbolt 4. So just like the M1 it will only support 1 external display that has a resolution of up to 6K at 60Hz. This is a bit of missed opportunity in my mind. But I assume that Apple is trying to create a reason for you to buy the M2 Pro, Max or Ultra when they come out.

So with all of that out of the way, does it make your M1 series processor obsolete? In short, no. After all, when Apple comes out with the iPhone 13, it doesn’t make your iPhone 12 or iPhone 11 obsolete. This is no different. Besides that, if you have a M1 Pro, Max, or Ultra, those processors will utterly destroy the M2 in every way as they have way more headroom than the M2. At least until the M2 Pro, Max and Ultra appear. And even at that point, what I said about your iPhone not being made obsolete when the new iPhone comes out still applies.

Now I will admit that there’s a performance boost in the M2. But unless you are playing video games on your Mac, which despite what Apple claims nobody does because of the lack of triple A titles on the Mac platform, or you’re really pushing the M2 using Logic or Final Cut for example, you won’t notice the difference. Thus if you’re worried that you might of wasted your money on Apple’s first generation Apple Silicon, you haven’t. Feel free to enjoy your M1 based Mac today and for years to come.

Drive With Kehlani Copilot Now Available On Waze

Posted in Commentary on June 7, 2022 by itnerd

Today, Waze is introducing its Drive with Kehlani experience where fans can join the Grammy-nominated artist for a ride that takes them up close and personal with the artist as Kehlani shares stories from the road, how they set the mood in the car and what making music means to them. Before you get a chance to see them live here in Canada, drive with Kehlani for a limited time.

To help dive deeper into Kehlani’s world, the driving experience features:

  • Voice Options: Access Kehlani’s voice and wise words by visiting the “Waze voice” option within voice & sound settings
  • Moods: Two new Moods, Flowing and Captivating, inspired by Kehlani’s latest music and camera, which they always keep nearby
  • Car Icon: Change your car icon to Kehlani’s signature vehicle, the El Kehmino, inspired by the artist’s own ‘81 El Camino

To keep the party going in the car, Kehlani also curated a Spotify playlist that you can stream through the Waze Audio Player, for the ultimate mix of music to set the vibe while you ride together on Waze.

The experience on Waze launches June 6 and is available for a limited time with voice navigation in English. Visit Waze or tap “My Waze” in your app to find the “Drive with Kehlani” banner.

EnGenius Plans To Deliver More Simplicity And Security To Business Networks With Its First-Ever Cloud Security Gateway

Posted in Commentary with tags on June 7, 2022 by itnerd

EnGenius, a leading global manufacturer of networking and voice communications for more than 20 years, will soon release its first brand new security gateway—that crucial first line of defense—bringing faster speed, enhanced security, and greater cloud management any place at any time, all without the complex setup process that plagues other vendor systems.

EnGenius will round out its cloud solution with the new gateway, giving customers the ability to set up quickly and manage their entire network from absolutely anywhere using a central cloud interface or mobile app. The end-to-end solution will also offer core functionalities through a cloud-based network security system that allows customers greater visibility across its line of access points, gigabit PoE switches, and soon a fully operative security gateway.

The EnGenius cloud-managed security gateway, combined with an already powerful cloud management solution, will allow IT professionals to do so much more:

  • Simple setup, control, and monitoring
  • Centralized device visibility and management from anywhere
  • Flexible multi-mode functions to suit different customer needs
  • High-flow rate filtering and inspection services to enhance security
  • Built-in failover, balancing, and safeguards 
  • Touchless system maintenance and updates

It will have plenty of horsepower to handle heavy throughput requirements and will be insanely easy to set up.

Set up. Scan. Plug in. Done.

More details will be revealed later this year.

Guest Post: Americans Lost A Record $68 Million To Job & Business Opportunities Scams In 2022 Q1 Says Atlas VPN

Posted in Commentary with tags on June 7, 2022 by itnerd

Data analyzed by Atlas VPN shows that US citizens lost over $68.3 million to various job and business offer scams in the first quarter of 2022. 

The business and job opportunities fraud category includes offers for work-at-home jobs, like stuffing envelopes or processing medical claims, multi-level marketing schemes, job scams, job listings, employment services, inventions or idea promotions, and business opportunities.

The figures were extracted from a public database of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). US Citizens can submit fraud reports to the FTC for further investigation. The FTC shares this data to inform the nation about the state of the cybercrime landscape in the US.

All in all, US citizens have lost $701.4 million to bogus job and business opportunities since 2018. We will dissect the data into smaller increments to better understand this fraud type.

To start, criminals swindled $17.7 million from unsuspecting victims in 2018 Q1, which comes out to around $197 thousand lost daily. These damages were a result of 1,969 scams with a median loss of $1,036.

In contrast, Americans lost $68.3 million or nearly $759 thousand daily throughout the first quarter of 2022, which represents a growth of 285% over 2018 Q1. The FTC received 5,999 reports indicating a loss, with the median loss standing at $1,950. 

Yet the significant upsurge in business and job opportunities scams started in 2021 Q4, where total losses amounted to $62.5 million, or an average of $680 thousand per day, a growth of 29% over 2021 Q3. The median loss was $2,000, while the number of reports totaled 6,353.

The FTC notes that scammers advertise fake jobs in the newspapers, online, or even on signs, posters, and flyers.

To read the full article, head over to:
https://atlasvpn.com/blog/americans-lost-a-record-68-million-to-job-business-opportunities-scams-in-2022-q1