I'd switched to a OnePlus a few years ago and was delighted by the performance/cost.
In the last few years the combined privacy invasion from:
1. Google at the very heart of Android (and even Cyanogen/LineageOS with DNS, Google Play Services etc.) and everything I do on the phone.
2. OnePlus with sending data and telemetry back to China and being caught out multiple times after saying they respect the user.
3. Facebook with asking for/getting insane levels of permissions from Android for their apps.
Has made me realise that Apple are the only option for anyone who cares about privacy and wants some simplicity.
Sure I'd love for the ello (/e/) project to eventually take off and provide a real solution but in the meantime and for now Apple aren't showing any signs of wanting to (or needing to) exploit/sell my personal data.
I'm degooglifying as much as possible and my tech friends are too after the recent scandals. Google's a company we will look back on in 50 years as being a blight on freedom.
Sadly also Apple collects data on their users. Last year around 300TB a day on what users search for, which apps they use, how many times, where you click and navigate through the OS and in the apps, etc. :(
As far as I'm aware, none of those companies knowingly gave that information over to the NSA. In Google's example, the NSA had tapped their inter-datacenter fiber lines to steal the data. That's why all inter-datacenter traffic at Google is always encrypted now.
That comment was based on the title of the article I linked to above: "Secret program gives NSA, FBI backdoor access to Apple, Google, Facebook, Microsoft data".
I assumed that PRISM data came from a "backdoor" it had to iPhones. There's no proof that PRISM data didn't come from a backdoor to iPhones. But there's no proof it did come from a backdoor either. So I'll take back that comment.
There is a financial incentive to NOT share data because there is a demand in the market for privacy. Apple can pursue this market because they charge for hardware. Google had no way of making money on privacy because they don’t sell a physical product.
So it is simple: Apple has a choice. Google doesn’t.
Few people in America pay full price for the phone. All of the carriers offer zero percent interest payment plans as does Apple. Yes I know it’s paying the full price but psychologically, most people only care about the monthly amount.
Sure, but what do you think those incentives could probably be for a company that makes its living based not on data collection but selling physical products whose 'best product is now privacy' according to the post, and who are more profitable than anyone else?
Profit, pure and simple. Just because they're profitable, does not mean they will not seek other avenues of revenue. I won't pretend to be able to predict the future, but markets shift, and should Apple find themselves in less favorable position than the one they're in today, I'd have a hard time believing they wouldn't sell user data.
Why is that "the issue"? There are many other problems with excessive telemetry besides data being sold to third parties. Besides, both Google and Apple claim that they don't sell telemetry data to third parties, so how is that aspect of the issue even relevant here?
- don't have a reason to profile you and store those profiles constantly updated.
- don't have a reason to "follow" you across the web everywhere you go to update that profile.
Just having that profile on you makes a company a liability. C you trust a company that makes money solely based on the information they collect about you to make decisions that benefit you? or your privacy and security?
They've been progressively gimping the mobile site for a while. Now you can't use messenger from the mobile site, for zero good reason as far as I can tell. They just want to force people into using the app where they can harvest more data.
Thanks so much. I've been using m.facebook.com but they removed the messenger from there. I've been using messenger lite because it doesn't require as many permissions and is just so much lighter to use, but it lacks one of the most important things to me: gifs
You might do it on a big computer if you have one. I keep Facebook in a fluid instance on my Mac. About 3 times in the past few years I’ve wished I had my login on my phone to get an address for an event or something, but haven’t gone there since I can remember. I don’t really use messenger though.
Google (YouTube, Search) and LinkedIn are doing that too. Especially if you are also using FireFox. Subtle differences in functionality, things missing here and there. Still I am opting for the web versions with my privacy settings and Privacy Badger, etc. LinkedIn app has a builtin Chromium browser that you can't control and may have custom code additions.
Most good stuff is closed source now. It is what it is.
It boils down to trust. Do you trust Google? Do you trust Apple?
I trust Google to care very much about security. I also trust that they are gathering as much information as they can about me. Even as a paid customer. It’s baked into their business model.
I trust Apple to care very much about security. I also trust that they fundamentally believe in privacy and are not gathering large swaths of data about me, and are doing what they can to keep others from doing so if I play in their garden. It’s baked into their business model.
> It boils down to trust. Do you trust Google? Do you trust Apple?
Why don't boil down even further? How comfortable you are when you put your own security on other people's hand? Do you trust others will protect you no matter what? Do you trust others will completely be honest with you no matter what?
I don't know about you, but for me, I always trying to figure out the detail of the thing that will be rely on, even it's just a door alarm. Only after that, I can then tell whether or not I trust it.
If I understand you correctly, I can say that your "trust" is actually a form of trade off: I want to use the awesome __________ Phone, so I can ______________. For that, I could take some shit from __________ as long as they don't ______________.
However, that just means you've convinced yourself to trust something, hardly anything else.
And speak of "business model", many company was cool and awesome when it's young. Things change.
So, if it's a question: Do you trust Google? Do you trust Apple? Both no. I kept my file encrypted when uploading to Google Drive, and I don't use iCloud at all. I have 16 different Google accounts and 3 Apple accounts, each for different things, and I replace most of then every two years (Or when Google start to ask me for my phone number).
My advise: Don't dip yourself into that situation when you have to make a choice like that.
To me it boils down to this. At some level, there is a point where you have to trust people/companies. I don’t have time to spend researching and installing custom software to protect privacy. I fully understand that there are people here who have the time to devote to that or want to spend time doing that, but it’s not practical for most people to really spend much time on it.
So, given that I have to trust someone (and for 99% of people on the planet this is also true) I choose to trust Apple.
Currently I'm running with an MS Lumia 950 and when necessary, I'll switch back to Android. I've completely removed all my social media apps on both phones.
The most recent reason I needed to switch back to my OnePlus 2 was because my hockey manager now uses Venmo to accept payment for the upcoming season. I was pissed when I found out Venmo won't allow you to process payments from your desktop account anymore. You are forced to download and install the Android app, and then send money that way.
It just feels so invasive. I felt like they were saying, "We can't get the data we want on your PC, so we'll force you to download and install the app, and in the process, give us the permissions we want to get to your data.
for anyone mentioning Facebook Lite & Messenger Lite: stop, stop using them right away, the 2 apps enable all permissions without asking (because Android is saying it needs to enable all for old apps, WHAT?)
also on Android, you can't share a photo to Facebook Messenger without granting at least Storage permission or Photo permission (which is not the case on Instagram)
Though I think apples "pro privacy" stance is likely just a happy accident I tend to agree.
Either you choose a somewhat open platform, or you choose privacy. One would have thought/hoped that they were tightly coupled.
As it is today I can not buy a phone without having a deep bottomless disdain for it. Not the hardware but the software. And I don't even expect that much.
I have given up entirely, the slither of hope is that in the future we can decouple the smart in smart phone with the phone. A truly dumb phone that I can interface from another device, a device I have some control over that I don't have to sell my soul to.
I'd argue that the GNU/Unix text interface is open, interoperable, and highly polished. The key ingredient is time.
Modern windowing systems are also very similar. A Windows 3.1 or early MacOS user would have no trouble using a computer today.
Touch and phone interfaces will get there, too, as both software and culture evolve together.
I can't wait for, and would love to support, the Debian of phone architectures. In past HN threads, it has been suggested to me that the real blocker for a good open phone OS is at the hardware/kernel level. That was the state of the hardware environment in the late nineties and early 2000s.
Give it time, effort, and support, and a great and open OS will emerge.
I can't wait for, and would love to support, the Debian of phone architectures. In past HN threads, it has been suggested to me that the real blocker for a good open phone OS is at the hardware/kernel level. That was the state of the hardware environment in the late nineties and early 2000s.
I would like to be that optimistic, but I am not. The PC has always been a fundamentally open platform and hardware has been supported by many OSes for a long time. When I was young, we would run MS-DOS, DR-DOS, OS/2 and Windows 3.x (which was strictly spoken not an OS). After 1994 I also ran Linux and BSD and I never had any real problems hardware-wise. There was a difficult time around the turn of the century with WinModems and printers that only supported Windows. But that was more of a temporary regression.
Same here. Whenever I get caught up in some religious phone OS war I say I chose the platform I hate the least. I wish I could love my iPhone, but there are so many things wrong with it which could easily be solved without compromising anything product wise.
I don't think you are doing it wrong but in 90% of the cases that's on the app developer. The OS usually doesn't ask for wifi randomly but many apps do. They check for connectivity and if wifi isn't available they prompt the user. It's not hard code to write but it shouldn't be used often. I'm actually writing similar code right now but for a pretty good reason, I'm working a feature that might use the presence of a wifi network to indicate proximity to an IoT device.
This is on Google now. Apple provides ways for app developers to use the native phone UI now. If I set up my number with the Google Hangouts app, I can get calls from my Google Voice number via the Voice app or the native UI. You can't do this with the Google Voice app but I have a feeling that's because they haven't updated it to support this API.
What do you mean you can’t call out on a Google Voice? You open the app and make the call.
If Google Voice has Siri integration which has been around for awhile, you can say “Call X using Google Voice” and it will call using GV and activate the phone Bluetooth protocol if you are connected to your car’s Bluetooth system.
You entirely ignored the part about clicking on phone numbers in web pages. It's the same with any app. I should be able to use whichever contacts app I like, whether it is a unified contacts app, my LinkedIn contacts, my Facebook contacts, the maps application, etc. Any time I click a phone number to make a call, it should appear to come from my Google Voice number. Copying and pasting is horrible experience just to make a call.
Blame that on Google. If you use Chrome on iOS, they already give you a choice of which maps app to use and which mail client to use. There is no reason they couldn’t give you the choice of how to handle Tel links.
If Google wanted to since they already have all of the apps, you could completely stay in the Google ecosystem on iOS - Browser, mail client, google voice, etc.
You're grasping for excuses. There are security issues with running any app on your phone. A maps app could do nefarious things with your location. A browser app could do nefarious things with your browse history. That doesn't mean Apple blocks all third party apps.
If I trust a phone app enough to use its dialer, I should be able to route all calls through it. If I trust a maps app enough to use it manually, I should be able to set it to open for all address links. It really is that simple.
You can also disable location in Google Search on Android, in addition to switching to entirely different search providers and assistants. On Android, you can block tracking cookies in all apps, not just the web browser — without having to "jailbreak" your phone (relying on a rootable security vulnerability) or even unlock the bootloader.
For somebody who is seriously privacy-conscience, Android is strictly better.
All claims about privacy appear to stem from using fewer Google apps by default. Those default apps (like Safari and Siri) are inferior to their Google equivalents for most users, and for the people who don't want to give Google information, Android users can choose to use non-Google apps as well (like Firefox and local assistants and maps).
That's not at all were all the claims come from. You can block all ads without jailbreaking on iOS and iOS collections an order of magnitude less tracking data than Android. Apple has pioneered the differential privacy algorithm's on top of that. Apple has a ton of features pointed at user privacy especially in the latest version of Safari. Android is in no way strictly better for privacy and saying so is irresponsible IMO.
> You can block all ads without jailbreaking on iOS
You can't block ads across all apps without running your own ad-blocking proxy, jailbreaking, or paying Apple for the privilege of building an ad-blocking app on your phone. You can on Android by just installing an app (one example:
> and iOS collections an order of magnitude less tracking data than Android.
iOS collects the same data that Android collects. The difference is how much data the default apps collect that go to Google as I stated earlier. The Google apps are strictly better than the equivalent Apple apps for most users (maps, assistant, photos, mail, etc.). For the relatively fewer users who care more about privacy than about their apps doing things for them by knowing about them, Android has more and better options as well (Firefox, local apps, system-wide ad blocking, etc.).
How has apple pioneered differential privacy. MS started it and Google has used ot before Apple ,even open sourced some portion of it,iirc. Google is also doing research in federated learning(ian goodfellow)
Your second link is about data collection that Google apps also do on iPhones. It doesn't happen if you use a different search provider or disable sending your location for Google searches, as I stated and you quoted.
Your first link is about accidental collection that no longer occurs according to the article.
All valid point and I would add ignorance to it. They simply don’t know or care.
I file radars when applicable, my gripes are more general:
- No universal 3D Touch puts it in a weird spot. I like 3D Touch! Why not say we equip all models with 3D Touch, similar to when they made ips display the standard even for entry level MacBooks.
-prohibiting self signed applications. You have all the right to keep Steam Link off your shop, but not off my device. And if I had the desire to install Alex Jones’ app I would like to do that. You’re not my mom Apple. I’m still hoping the EU will fix this at some point.
-iTunes. I use it. It’s awful. If they would at least kill it off I’d know not to use it anymore.
-Seriously lagging behind in standards like PWAs, wireless charging or NFC.
-iMessage and Airdrop are awesome. Too bad I can rarely use them because the majority around me use Android.
1. No. Teardowns have shown nothing of that sort. It's a marketing decision to push people to buy $170 airpods. In fact, there's a very popular tech blogger's video where he successfully adds in a headphone jack to his iPhone 8.
2. No. Samsung phones are far more water resistant than iPhones are with a jack on it. I would love to see your links to said research.
> It's a marketing decision to push people to buy $170 airpods.
Earbuds that work with the iPhone come in the box (and prior to the just announced models even an adapter was included). I'm not sure how lack of a jack pushes someone to buy AirPods. Maybe it makes them think about buying bluetooth headphones over wired if they were already thinking about third party headphones? Maybe.
Also while you may disagree about the 'barometric vent', it was put in the space that the headphone jack would have taken.
As pictured above, you can see a piece of plastic sits behind the ingress protection (waterproofing!), right where the headphone jack would have been. And (update!) according to Apple it's a "barometric vent." Apparently adding all the waterproofing to the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus meant that it was more of a sealed box, and so to be able to have an accurate and working barometer, Apple used that space. The barometer is the thing that allows a phone to measure altitude, and Apple points out that on the iPhone 7 it can measure even minor changes like climbing a flight of stairs.
You may disagree how the space was used, but I wanted to point out that it was in fact used. The poster I responded to said tear downs showed it not used. Even the video given as evidence showed the guy taking out the vent as the first step.
And that's fine, but if you do anything active while wearing headphones, wireless is so much better. Even my cheap bluetooth headphones last 10 hours on a short charge (and tell me when they need to be recharged). I couldn't imagine going back to wires at the gym or while doing yard work. I do use a wired pair at my desk, but then why would I plug into my phone?
And AirPods? If you keep them in the case between uses they should always be charged.
Out of curiosity, why do you frequently need to know your altitude? I don't think I've ever known my altitude except when driving past those "Welcome to Springdalevale, pop. 781. alt. 2,003 ft" signs you see when driving through small towns in mountainous areas.
Nice, and I'm not OK with that :) I have no intention of having another thing that requires recharging, I've already got my phone. Glad to see different people needing different features from a phone, though.
No. Teardowns have shown nothing of that sort. It's a marketing decision to push people to buy $170 airpods. In fact, there's a very popular tech blogger's video where he successfully adds in a headphone jack to his iPhone 8.
How are people being "pushed" to buy Airpods when they can use any Bluetooth headphone, the headphones that come bundled with the phone, or use their own headphones with a $9.99 adapter that they have included up until yesterday?
Simple. There are multiple codecs in Bluetooth headphones, the most used one is proprietary aptX from Qualcomm. Apple has no problems licensing it for Macbooks and iMacs, but for iPhones they chose to reject Qualcomm, do their thing, and use AAC codec, which is supported only by small fraction of wireless headphones. https://darko.audio/2017/12/how-to-enable-aptx-hd-bluetooth-...
So, if your headphones don't support AAC, they will (most likely) fallback to SBC encoding with a subpar sound quality. Don't want a subpar sound quality? Buy Airpods. Or Beats. Or some other overpriced thing that understands AAC. There was some 100 year-old industry standard regarding sound transmission, but apparently it's "obsolete" now, because Apple said so. And bundled headphones don't sound too good.
The removal of headphone jack was purely a political decision to spite Qualcomm and screwing over Apple's customers.
So now it’s a bad thing that Apple chose to support an industry standard (AAC) instead of a proprietary Qualcomm only protocol?
But if you aren’t satisfied with the Apple wired headphones, up until the 12th Apple bundle an adapter, you could choose any wired headphones you wanted. After the 12” it would be $9.99. It’s still not forcing you to buy AirPods.
As far as Bluetooth, there are other non Apple/Beats Bluetooth AAC headphones. Nothing forcing anyone to buy them from Apple.
> It's a marketing decision to push people to buy $170 airpods
FWIW, my lack of headphone jack had nothing to do with me buying $170 airpods. The product sells itself. It literally felt like something out of the future when it launched. Opening and closing the lid makes me happy on a daily basis. I can't think of a better use for that $170. It's a product that is pure joy to use, and completely eliminates one of the biggest annoyance factor in my daily life: tangled headphones, and worse, that feeling on your ears when you accidentally tug earbuds that are in your ear. So frustrating!
Have you looked into CopperheadOS? I would like to hear your thoughts on it. They even have a store where you can buy Pixel phones flashed with CopperheadOS. They're a bit pricey though ($1000+). I personally would rather flash it myself to save some money.
Anything new on that front that you have heard? I remember the meltdown but haven't heard anything since. Looks like the business guy is just continuing to sell what they had and then no updates ever. Once people get sick of that, maybe the company just goes away?
Was he? His claim is: "I have never had any employment agreement, copyright agreement, licensing agreement, NDA or even work contracts with Copperhead. There was a mutual understanding that I owned the code I was writing."
Work for hire doctrine says he has aa very poor argument.
Work for hire is a statutorily defined term (17 U.S.C. § 101), so a work for hire is not created merely because parties to an agreement state that the work is a work for hire. It is an exception to the general rule that the person who actually creates a work is the legally recognized author of that work. According to copyright law in the United States and certain other copyright jurisdictions, if a work is "made for hire", the employer—not the employee—is considered the legal author.
I can't think of a context where a judge looks at a salaried CTO commiting code to repositories with the same name as the company, in inarguably the core domain of the company, and shipped in the name of the company by said CTO, with nothing written down to the contrary and goes "oh yeah, that's totally his code, not the company's".
I think Daniel's in the process of learning that verbal agreements don't mean anything when the shit hits the fan. IMO that's what he gets for switching to a non copyleft license.
I made an alternative to CopperheadOS after it fell apart for those interested: https://github.com/dan-v/rattlesnakeos-stack. Rather than providing random binaries of an OS to install on your phone, I've gone the route of creating a cross platform tool, rattlesnakeos-stack, that provisions all of the AWS infrastructure needed to continuously build your own personal RattlesnakeOS, with your own signing keys, and your own OTA updates. It uses AWS Lambda to provision EC2 Spot Instances that build RattlesnakeOS and upload artifacts to S3. Resulting OS builds are configured to receive over the air updates from this environment.
Copperhead is a great idea! Biggest issues I had with it when I was looking at it was, lack of recent up to date hardware. The Pixel was a great phone but it's getting to be a pretty old phone, the pixel 3 will be out soon. Second and much bigger issue is the lack of apps because SO many Android apps require the google play services and if you enable that you lose the vast majority of the privacy benefits you gain from Copperhead and fdroid. If you don't use apps or just a few that support fdroid, then Copperhead might be a great choice.
I am a senior app developer and I love some of the features that come with a smartphone (google photos often feels like magic) but I have got to admit, I am tempted to just dump my personal phone and only have one in a drawer to work on.
Yea, it's pretty awful. Beyond that you also have to trust that the phone is doing what it says (not broadcasting wifi beacons when wifi is off). A faraday caged messenger bag has been on my list for stuff to make. I've also been trying to think of an acceptable mask to wear in public and I saw someone on my train home with a mirrored face visor.  No time soon, but good to keep in mind. License plates are pretty bad too, photography in public is legal, so anyone could set up a dense enough camera network and track you everywhere you go via license plate. The most obvious case would be governments processing the video / images from cameras on traffic lights.
I think the parent was implicitly referring to smartphone platforms. Certainly Linux is both the most open and most private option for general computing, which is probably why the parent was lamenting the fact that privacy and openness (in smartphones) are not tightly coupled.
If by 'to do much with it' you mean asking the weather by voice, then yes. Otherwise, F-Droid provides open-source alternatives for many apps, and then many apps from Google Play Market actually work fine without Google Play Services.
The discussion currently is about phones. You either have google's android which is open but sells your info or ios which is closed but private. Ive been saying for years we need a Linux for phones. I don't have the knowhow but I would gladly donate funds towards a system.
"As it is today I can not buy a phone without having a deep bottomless disdain for it."
I feel the same way, but I don't feel negatively about it.
I have an iPhone and I treat it like a hostile/suspect device and that is working quite well for me.
Apple has no idea who I am - I have never even typed my own name into the phone. Apple doesn't even know my phone number as my "real" phone number is one I control and forward to the burner SIM (straighttalk) that is in the phone.
My actual phone provider (twilio) doesn't know who I am.
Straighttalk doesn't know who I am - they got an assumed name and email address. Same for the very, very few apps that I use.
So unless Apple decides to acquire twilio and whatever verizon MVNO I am using this quarter and my credit card issuer, all they've got is Fakey McFakefake.
None of this was difficult, aside from building my own carrier inside twilio, but that was fun.
 Remember: VISA/MC do not verify names on purchases. The user interface strongly suggests that they do, but they do not - if you correctly enter your number/expiry/CVV/zipcode/etc., you can put in any old name you want. There is really no reason for any app to know your real name.
It's true for smartphones. If you choose privacy AND open source then you're either making sacrifices or doing something "hacky". Most people want to have their mainstream apps available and don't want to learn how to install a new OS on an Android phone.
I.e., you wall yourself into your own garden that you aren't conceivably going to want to maintain and that no one cares to build apps for.
iOS and Android are the choices. I say pick your poison. If a new choice comes along, I don't see any reason for the dynamics to be any different. People want high quality well-integrated electronics, and you only get that by being beholden to the manufacturer.
...but those who do get more privacy than those who try to buy their privacy from Apple. In other words, Apple is an option for those who a) don't want to learn and don't have access to someone who can do the job for them, who b) trust Apple when they say they will guard their privacy and c) can afford to make these choices.
By the way, the time when installing an alternative Android distribution on your phone was 'hacky' is past for many devices, several distributions offer OTA updates so it is perfectly possible to run a mostly-open device without ever having to do anything 'hackish'.
As to whether an always-on radio beacon transmitting your location to the authorities can ever be seen as a plus in a privacy context remains to be seen of course, that is something which can not be fixed by either AOSP or Apple.
Any custom Android builds without installing google play services (possibly with microG if you still want some services like push, but with a FOSS client) are a great option.
Sure that's niche, not mainstream. But, like, xda-developers is pretty popular. To the point of people making subreddits for making fun of custom ROM users whining about things like VoLTE not working: https://www.reddit.com/r/xdacirclejerk/
There's nothing on the market now that I'd actually like to buy.
Apple do seem to have some respect for privacy at the moment, but it's still a phone that scans the user's face (far too creepy for me) or makes it difficult to restrict outgoing connections (I'm not keen on apps connecting to flurry, facebook and so on).
Upon enrollment, the phone illuminates your face with a grid of dots, and creates a three dimensional depth map of your face from multiple angles.
The results of that are stored in the secure enclave, and when an unlock is requested the device re-scans the face that is in front of it. If the two maps match "close enough" the phone is unlocked.
You cannot recreate a face from the data, and the phone has no idea what you look like unless you actually look like this in real life: https://i.imgur.com/fNBiIUU.jpg
If you're worried about the very low resolution biometric map of your face being used to impersonate you, that can already be accomplished with just a couple of seconds of video, or a photograph and the only known defense against that is never venturing outside a secure perimeter into which camera lenses cannot see.
iOS has fantastic support for ad blockers and network proxies that make it INCREDIBLY easy to block outgoing connections. In my experience it works far better than Androids version of that.
Face tracking for faceId you can turn off but I agree it can be creepy. So far it's been limited to only on the device and encrypted so I've been ok with it but that's obviously a very personal choice.
There are some useful products but I wouldn't call it fantastic compared with my experiences on Android, e.g. where I can root the device and use a hosts file for system-wide blocking. VPN options are good there too, in my experience, though this may be another case of personal preference.
Adguard works rather well, but Apple doesn't seem too keen on their product:
The only solution I have found is to run an OpenVPN server at home and stay connected to it constantly. I lose a microscopically-minuscule amount of battery life, and a few percentage points of WAN throughput but it is worth it.
I then have content rules on the firewall between the OpenVPN server and the Internet.
As an added benefit, this makes the monitoring done by all cellphone providers (not just Verizon!) irrelevant because all they see is a constant, 24x7 stream of encrypted traffic to the same IP address.
As said down chat Charles Proxy is the one that I use, mostly because I've used it on macOS for years and trust the developer. It works great and has turned up SO many apps doing gross things. There are others in the store but I've never personally used them.
You can also run a proxy on a server remotely and intercept all the network calls from your phone, something burp is common in the security industry. It's under your network settings, HTTP Proxy. It's more limited than an app like Charles that inspects all traffic but it's another option.
Unfortunately Apple seems to have taken a couple steps back from supporting good ad-blocking tools. They forced AdGuard to cripple their iOS app to only allow DNS-based blocking instead of the superior local VPN blocking.
You don't need an "app" to support VPNs. All they do is make set up somewhat simpler. iOS has built in support for VPNs. Once you have the configuration information, you can set it up yourself from settings.
If you're curious about the reality of what actual privacy and/or security you are offered by Apple's products, you might be interested in Apple's guidelines for law enforcement requests. There's lots of info at https://www.apple.com/ca/privacy/government-information-requ... and there are two PDFs at the bottom outlining their ability to provide user data in different situations.
I wanted to actually call out one important detail in the latter link above:
"iCloud secures your information by encrypting it when it's in transit, storing it in iCloud in an encrypted format, and using secure tokens for authentication. For certain sensitive information, Apple uses end-to-end encryption. This means that only you can access your information, and only on devices where you’re signed into iCloud. No one else, not even Apple, can access end-to-end encrypted information."
So, we can discern that anything you store on iCloud that isn't using end-to-end encryption can be accessed by Apple. This includes (but is not limited to) Contacts, Photos, Notes, device Backups, and everything you're storing on iCloud Drive.
I started using cryptomator (https://cryptomator.org/) to encrypt iCloud files client-side. Has cross-platform apps, and works with Touch Id, so it doesn't come with the hassle of copying in a decryption key every time you need to access files.
Sorry to be so negative, but this is just BS. Short of a legally binding statement from Apple stating exactly what information they collect and who they sell it to, then you're just assuming they aren't collecting and selling your data. Of course their terms of service explicitly give them permissions to collect any information they want and sell it to anyone they want, which should be a big clue that they're doing it.
This article is solely about Apple making it harder for 3rd party apps and websites to track you. That's certainly a good thing, but the downside is that it just makes the data Apple has (or can have) far more valuable, which only increases the likelihood that they're collecting and selling a lot of data.
This article is just one guy speculating about his thoughts, and he was possibly paid to do it by Apple. If Apple wants to make privacy a selling point for their products, they would no doubt seize the opportunity to do so very loudly. And, if it's not Apple saying it, then it's not legally binding.
That just raises the suspicion for me. That website is a far cry from "We don't collect your data, we don't sell any information about you". Instead, the closest they get is with the statement below:
"Whether you’re taking a photo, asking Siri a question, or getting directions, you can do it knowing that Apple doesn’t gather your personal information to sell to advertisers or other organizations."
That only applies to two things, taking a photo and asking Siri a question. It does not prohibit them from collecting the data for their own use. And does not prohibit them from selling analysis of that data.
> Your iOS device can collect analytics about your iOS device and any paired Apple Watch and send it to Apple for analysis. The collected information does not identify you personally and can be sent to Apple only with your explicit consent.
You have to opt in to analytics collection when you set up the device and in Settings>Privacy>Analytics>Analytics Data you can examine or download everything which has been sent to Apple.
If you take Apple at their word that they're only collecting what they say they are, they're not bad.
You do explicitly consent when you agree to the terms of service. Additionally, further down in the paragraph you quoted:
"When it’s collected, personal data is either not logged at all, removed from reports before they’re sent to Apple, or protected by techniques such as Differential Privacy."
And the fact that you can download the data unquestionably proves that it can be traced back to you. I think you're just seeing what you want to see, and aren't paying attention to all of the loopholes they create for themselves.
Apple has repeatedly and loudly talked about privacy up to and including Tim Cook saying the privacy is a "basic human right". Also it's quite easy to see what data is being sent from your phone, just hook it up to a proxy, ala Burp or Charles. It will dump all network communication from the phone and were it's going to. Here is a paper about the difference in data collection and how it's measured:
I think they make a point of this fairly regularly, double blind machine learning (apologies if this is the wrong phrase..) and also on device facial recognicitan - ie. not on apples servers (as in Google’s / facebooks case).
I think it is highly unlikely to come out that they are selling company data. Look at all the comments that Tim Cook made about Facebook - that he wouldn’t be in that situation as it would compromise his morals etc..
If Apple wants to make privacy a selling point for their products, they would no doubt seize the opportunity to do so very loudly.
At the recent iPhone / Watch launch event a few days ago, Apple COO Jeff Williams stood on stage with a single word backdrop "Privacy" and said:
"At Apple we believe your personal information belongs to you, you should decide who you share your information with and who gets to see it. Period. All your (Watch) health and fitness data is encrypted on the device and in the cloud".
At the start of my career (when I haven't been earning that much money) Android phones were easier to access, because they were cheaper. At first it baffled my mind at which scale Google is able to provide services for free, but the more experience I personally gained, the more I realised at which cost, my privacy.
Answers to my questions why apple products are way more expensive, even compared to devices with similar features and hardware specs, remained pretty superficial "it's that way" or "apple is just better" weren't obviously satisfying. Blinded by my own conclusion that apple products just sell because of apple fanboyism I remained with google.
Now, in the year of 2018 were everyone is interested in your data im still pretty wishy-washy of getting an iPhone but recent news drive me towards it. But in the end it might be a decision between pest or cholera.
The total cost of ownership for Apple products is, for some calculations, less than other products.
It obviously depends a lot on how much you care about software updates, how gently you treat your device, etc. But if you’re the sort of person who buys a new phone every two years and sells your old phone, the resale value of the old phone tends to be high enough that the costs look about the same as reasonably comparable domestically available devices.
If you’re buying your phone straight from China, or don’t care much about high-end phone features, your mileage may vary.
I wish Privacy was a bigger deal to people I knew. Apple, despite it's faults, is doing really incredible work at raising the bar for privacy. I know so many technical folks who just shrug when privacy comes up. It's amazing to me that people can just seem to not care. I know that awareness is rising but so many people are willing to trade a little money for something they can never reclaim. It seem so short sighted.
> I know so many technical folks who just shrug when privacy comes up.
Or as many in this thread do, preach complicated (and often broken in practice) processes and tooling that might theoretically protect ones data, but require Stallman's PC levels of configuration and not actually get anything done while Apple's UX does.
The fact that (for the moment) the top comments are all software engineers giving up and advocating for dumbphones is a laughable abdication of responsibility/competence/design.
the state tracks your economic activity and personal behavior and habits and uses them to calculate something akin to a credit score, but which is used to restrict civil rights (travel, education opportunities, etc) if you are perceived as unreliable.
> From the program, the Chinese SCS will be fully implemented starting in 2020 and will be made mandatory for every citizen. Once implemented, every citizen will be rewarded, or punished, on the basis of their behavior. Some types of punishments can be: flight ban, exclusion from private schools, slow internet connection, exclusion from high prestige work, exclusion from hotel, registration on a public blacklist.
Google left China, Apple crashes your phone when you get a Taiwanese flag (in China), who cares about privacy? Never Apple. Apple only cares about your money. If you care about privacy (I mean really care) use Replicant.
This seems awfully alarmist. There are a ton of apps that send telemetry to AWS servers in the US, and from there they could easily send the data back to China. Amazon doesn't care. Apple doesn't care about hosting your app's backend on AWS.
Nobody would write apps with this sort of policy in place... so here we are. If you really think the Chinese government is out to get you, which is a very real concern, I would not use any apps on your phone. The app developers do not care about your safety, and neither does Apple.
That's the power of marketing for you. One required privacy policies while the other didn't. One asks before enabling AGPS data collection, while the other doesn't even let you opt out. One allows you to use on-device maps as default, while the other doesn't. One allows you to replace the default SMS app with Signal, while the other doesn't.
You’re either being extremely disingenuous here, or are missing/leaving out some important and relevant details.
The malware you’re referring to—XcodeGhost—was produced by compromised non-Apple copies of Xcode installers downloaded by (mostly) Chinese developers from non-Apple (Baidu) servers, who then produced iOS apps with the non-Apple Xcode. The modified copies of Xcode would inject malware into iOS app builds. The link you provided says nothing about actual numbers of end users with malware infections, much less that there were more users infected than all Apple’s competitors combined. It merely suggests potential number of users who could be affected if they installed known compromised versions of apps built with the non-Apple Xcode—and it provides no methodology for what these estimates of total potentially affected users is based on.
Privacy policies do nothing to actually protect user privacy. Facebook’s requiring of privacy policies hasn’t protected users or the company from multiple privacy fiascos.
What GPS data collection are you referring to here? Apple-collected data stays on user devices. Third-party apps are granted permission (or not) to use location services however they see fit. Location services can be disabled entirely. What third parties do with your location data is between you and them, not Apple.
iMessage being replaceable by Signal or any other app as a default messaging app says nothing about Apple’s commitment to user privacy. You are free to use Signal.
I am not being disingenuous. You simply don't understand what I said.
The best outside estimates show XCodeGhost infected at least 400 million users. That estimate is from knowing which apps were infected and using publicly available estimates for their users. Apple didn't say how many exactly (or even warn its users about the malware) because Apple only pays lip service to security for marketing purposes.
> Privacy policies do nothing to actually protect user privacy.
You disagree with Apple on this then.
> What GPS data collection are you referring to here?
I told you exactly what data collection I was referring to there. Apple (not third parties) collects GPS data from user's phones to run its AGPS service. Unlike Android, which has an opt-in for this, Apple doesn't even let you opt out.
> You are free to use Signal.
But not as your default SMS app. Instead, you have to use Apple's closed source and unverified app.
> Heard some Chinese companies sell phones with ad injections in default apps.
> Heard some Chinese companies sell phones with ad injections in default apps.
Yep. I bought a cheap tablet off of Amazon with the only use for it needing to be able to read digital textbooks at close to their equivalent physical size. This was back when tablets larger than 7" were crazy expensive. This one wasn't.
It has so many ads injected into and between apps (full-screen popups on app change) that it's unusable for anything other than reading static content (which is luckily what I bought it for). Response time is on par with a 1st-gen Kindle.
I thought I'd be cute and implement DNS adblocking at the router level but that just causes crashes and hangs since they didn't see a need to implement a graceful failure mode for the ad callbacks.
> Heard some Chinese companies sell phones with ad injections in default apps.
Cubot is a good example:
"However, it was discovered that Cubot had removed the malware from the System UI package and hidden it under a new package, com.android.telephone, disguised as the phone dialer. On further digging, it was discovered that the new package does not have any real function and it manages to evade any detection by antivirus apps such as NetGuard, that would detect the malware under System UI previously."
Or Dogee T5. It wakes you up at night with the noisy ads. terrible. It would be a quite good phone, but not. useless. One of the adwares is in the wireless update system app, others I don't remember already where are they exactly, but in system apps.
When I get new Lenovo laptop, I immediately throw away their drive, put a bigger one and install Windows 7 from scratch.
At least for some time, this was not good enough. The shipped crap/spyware in the firmware and exploited Windows Platform Binary Table to inject their spyware into freshly installed Windows. So, even a clean disk and an official Windows CD didn't evade the spyware:
You don't need to. Unlike early versions of Android and apps that still link to older versions, with iOS, you have never had a list of permissions you had to accept before launching the app. The app ask permission when you need a feature and you can deny it the permission. After it asks once (three times?), it will never ask for the permission again and you have to go to settings to enable the permission.
You have a point but are also mistaken. XPrivacy does way more granular access checks than Android or iOS provide. The downside is, it's not casual user-friendly.
With XPrivacy you're able (or used to be able - I'm not sure if it works on recent Android versions) control things like how apps can use WebViews (e.g. what URLs they are allowed to open there), or whenever app is allowed to read or write (all separately) clipboard data. Etc etc.
Most of these permissions either require individual consent after you run the app (and can be revoked in settings) or aren’t allowed under any circumstances.
The exceptions I see are:
Internet access (you can block cellular internet access on iOS and 3rd party keyboards can be blocked from allowing any network access)
Prevent links from opening in a view - depending on which type of web view that an app uses, the native content blocking framework that third party ad blockers use for Safari also work in the WebView. For instance, the ad blocker I have installed works with Feedly - my RSS reader.
The only sensor I think that can be blocked is the GPS.
I have and I don't give access to root to my software. Also on my linux computer I can patch the very same moment there is a vulnerability, on my phone I can only patch security fixes when the manufacturer wants and only usually for 1 or 2 years.
Also, have you really audited the code of xposed and xprivacy to see that there isn't any single security flaw that expose your whole phone?
I'm tempted to move from Android to an Apple phone partly for that reason.
I'm tired of the endless android situations where an app seems to be able to do whatever regardless of permissions... and permissions can't really be managed anyway. I also don't belive Google will ever get a handle on those permissions / privacy, they just don't care to.
It doesn't help that google killed the nexus line and now we have pixels that are premium priced anyway so I may as well consider Apple where I didn't before.
The camera is also a big deal to me so a lot of the "hey it's not a pixel but" options just don't do it for me.
It's surprising to me that an easy-to-use set of scripts to do this for you hasn't popped up (to my knowledge). When Apple initially offered the "zero cost but you have to rebuild every week" solution, I was sure there'd be an idiot-proof solution to make that seamless within a few days.
I say this as an old apple fanboy. The apple products are by far the best privacy wise, but I recommend against them anyway. I like Mac os, but feel I can't pay apple any more money.
I have repaired enough phones and computers to recommend people to not use apple. Unless you there is a class action lawsuit they won't extend warranty, even for obviously faulty products.
The last 2 years I have fixed more than 5 broken macbooks that Apple refused to fix for less than $400 with 10 minute solder jobs, and I'm just a hobbyist helping friends. Two of them were fixing issues that Apple had already "fixed" by doing what could be called the worst solder jobs of the century (one was actually just using a rubber pad to push a chip in place instead of doing a proper resolder. According to the guy linked later in this post this was apples official fix :( :( :( ...)
Manuy manufacturers have followed apples lead (soldered SSDs and batteries and devices that won't open).
I wouldn't go for those devices either. The Nexus 5 (not s. I don't know that one) is very easy to open and replace parts in (at least as far as phones go),but finding someone that can properly diagnose it and fix it can be hard.
This is true but let's face it if the 5 Eyes want to spy on you then you have massive problems - one person trying to defend against the state is an absolute fantasy. It's Google/Facebook/OnePlus/Samsung spying on me for commercial gain that I can do something about.
The problem with this is you (and most people) have no idea what PRISM actually is. It’s not what you think, but unfortunately the ham-fisted government doesn’t understand that is why they need transparency here. Unfortunately, they believe that discussing the nature of PRISM will cause terrorists who plot attacks over Google Hangouts (for example) to go dark, and that is the one and only priority that they have.
I have a hard time getting worked up about getting tracked online. I'm looking at Facebook's suggested groups right now. I've been on facebook since around 2013. The groups they try to suggest to me are:
one for a game I play that I used facebook to log into. Makes sense.
1st edition advanced Dungeons and Dragons.
I haven't mentioned Dungeons and dragons and haven't played it since the mid 1980s
Grindr aesthetics. I am hetero so I'm not sure what this is.
Indy Nostalgia. I live in Indiana so I guess that is somewhat relevant.
Hearthstone Australia. I live in Indiana and I don't play Hearthstone.
A few days ago I was talking about this with a friend and looked and facebook had suggested I join a group for progressive Asian-American Christians. I am not Asian-American or a Christian.
If this is the best they can do with 15 years worth of data then I don't think I have too much to worry about.
It's worth noting that using adblockers and similar gizmos will significantly limit the amount of data these companies capture about you, and will therefore drastically reduce the relevance of what they show you.
However, the overwhelming majority of Internet users don't use blockers, and are tracked wherever they go. Not just on the Internet, but in many places in real life too.
The author makes a few good points. Let's not forget though that Android OS still is waaaay more customize-able, and can be made more secure than iOS. Passcode on boot? Yes. I can choose what I want on my phone. I can choose to root my phone, just like a computer, with android, I can have full control of everything. Apps, defaults, kernel, etc.
Now, having said all that, for the average grandma I would also recommend an iPhone. Android OS/play store/xda is still the wild west, and you can be compromised easier, if you don't know what you're doing.
I totally agree, now that I'm getting screwed by Redmi. Redmi is spilling ads all over the phone... in the useless but compulsory widgets screen, in the video app, in the gallery, in the messaging app, in the memory cleaner app, in the screenshots app, you name it. It's getting nauseating.
Sorry, but I don't buy it. I believe this is just effective marketing which is exploiting the current Facebook, Google, Microsoft privacy discussions.
Also, let's not forget they are part of PRISM (which they lied about).
Just wait for iphones to start declining in sales (and they will) and have the privacy talk again.
I don't "trust" Apple, but they have been hyping security and privacy as a competitive advantage for several years now. Their business model is selling hardware and support, not in advertising and data.
Not that I see the logic in comparing the cost of an iPhone to Mark Zuckerberg buying buffer properties, but the cheapest new iPhone you can buy on apple.com is the iPhone 7 for $449, and that's without doing any price hunting. It's an entirely functional phone that has all of the same privacy features as any other iPhone, and it offers similar performance to other phones at that price.
Furthermore, there are plenty of people who live near the poverty line that will be buying an iPhone XS Max this year. They deserve privacy just as much as anyone else, and if they're deciding between spending a disproportional amount of their income on an iPhone or the latest Galaxy Note, the correct advice in terms of privacy would still be "buy an iPhone."
Sorry, iOS is a closed source OS and nobody can verify what's exactly happening under the hood, this article is shallow and unverifiable. I disagree that Apple's product is privacy without being able to verify that there isn't some code that's processing my personal info. Nobody here can prove or disprove it without access to the source code.
Have you looked at the source of Linux kernel or Chromium? Can you really tell what is going there without spending years working with it? Most likely you cannot. Moreover, as never ending stream of bugs indicates, neither engineers that work on the code can tell what the code does precisely.
Open source is very nice for tinkering, less so for security assurance. For the latter sound architecture is essential, and one can understand that without having the source for all the components.
The fact that a single person couldn't possibly fully understand a complex system is all the more reason to get more eyes on it. Besides, security is not the same as privacy, There's a huge difference between spotting where a network connection is being created, what data is sent and where to vs completely understanding an entire code base and spotting cleverly obfuscated code or low level bugs.
With closed source, only employees get to see the code, their goals align with the company. Open source, anyone can see it and raise stink about things they don't like on behalf of all users. It only takes 1 person for all users to get the benefits.
Granted, open source doesn't prevent all privacy issues, MS still does telemetry in OSS projects, sometimes not even allowing to opt-out, and they just ignore the countless complaints, and enough people still use it. Such is the state of the world I guess. But imagine one day MS decides to say they're no longer collecting telemetry but they've actually put in some cleaver code that looks like it does one thing but actually sends telemetry data. Getting caught doing that would be a way bigger PR issue that would, hopefully, cause far more users to completely stop trusting them, even if all their code was open source. I don't expect companies that want to stay in business for long would attempt such a thing.
There are literally thousands of eyes that look at kernel sources. Google even pays 1e5 usd if one finds exploitable bugs in their code. Yet security-related bugs stil pop up regularly.
Even to prove things formally source is not that essential. One stil needs to know details how code is translated into the machine instructions. But then to show, for example, absence of code path that copies user location into network packet one may analize machine instructions.
Open source only provides slightly more protection over closed source. The real issue is that if you're paranoid, there really is no way to verify that the device is doing what you want it to do: sure, maybe the OS is open source and you've verified that, but how do you know what you have on your device matches the source code (fun fact: the source code posted online for macOS and iOS differs from what's on the device, since Apple strips out references to unreleased products). Even if you're looking at the machine code itself pulled from the device, you have no guarantee that the processor is executing them faithfully.
Sure, so you also need open source hardware, reproducible builds, and a verifiable supply chain. You need openness and transparency end to end. Nobody’s achieved that to date, but that has got to be the goal.
Monitoring network traffic isn't going to help if that traffic is encrypted in transit. You can see data is going out, and to which IP address, but you can't really determine what's going out. You're not really going to be able to distinguish spyware from checking for updates unless there's an unreasonably size of data being sent up.
Uhm you can? As I said if they’re not using HSTS or Certificate pinning you just need to use an MITM proxy like Charles or mitproxy with a trusted certificate. You might not be able to intercept traffic for FAANG apps but for a vast chunk of apps it should be easy.
It has everything to do with that comment, since the obvious point being made was that "Android is open"–to which the poster responded with that Google's services, which the majority of Android users use, are not.
There's a lot of security research going on. Stuff like that can and is found without source code access. And the fewer number of iPhone models benefits Apple here, simply because there's less to cover (compared to the number of Android devices).
A huge portion of iOS/macOS is open source (nearly as much as Android) and anyone can verify what it's doing. Darwin is the kernel and underlying libraries. It's heavily based on FreeBSD and is available to download and read.
iOS is closed source, yes. From my perspective, so is every other mobile OS.
I'm not going to take on the effort involved in manually installing my own firmware that'd been built from verified sources. You could argue that's simple laziness on my part, but, for the fast majority of people, they simply lack the ability to do otherwise. So, while I can read some version of the Android source code, I still can't be sure of exactly what code is actually running on my device. I have to place some trust in the vendor.
So, who would I rather trust: The company that took the risk of publicly standing up to the US Government over a privacy issue where even public opinion was at best only arguably on their side, and that boots 3rd parties off of its platform if they're caught trying to siphon users data without permission? Or the company that happily collaborates with surveillance states, makes most its revenue by engaging in surveillance capitalism, and encourages other companies to do the same?
That said, if anyone wants to see about bringing FirefoxOS back to life, that'd be cool.
You mention "content", which presumably includes digital media–all of which you can totally buy anywhere else and load on your phone, or use an app to purchase on-device. The only thing you can't get from a non-Apple source is software (well, normally, that is. You can still sign apps yourself and sideload them on your device).
The credit card is on file in my Audible app too as with the rest of them on android. I'm not sure if the third party apps are explicitly banned from selling or if they just refuse to pay the Apple tax, I'm not interested.
Having to explain to my mother that the chromecast she got for christmas would only work on her phone if she first went to a website to buy a movie we wanted to watch and then opened the app to play, I feel like I am living in a bizarre parody.
I don't want to deal with that needless hoop jumping and my mother just won't do it.
It is a controlled platform which has pros and cons. The Apple way gives more security, privacy and better user experience. The downside is higher prices, less flexbility, reduced choices.
One of the reasons I can stomach it is that while Apple is an enclosed garden they tend to use rather standard formats on things so you usually have a way of getting your data out should you leave the garden.
I find that more problematic with the Microsoft world which uses much more MS specific formats which are often binary or hellishly complex to decipher or reverse engineer.
Totalitarianism is not built in a day. You don't wake up one day to find yourself in dystopia.
At the moment the capabilities are being built in bits and pieces, like the frog being boiled, and once the capabilities are there they will be used and abused. You don't even need imagination to see this, even a basic acquaintance of human nature and history is enough.
The current generation of software folks have dropped the ball and sold out completely. There is a feeding frenzy of creepiness, stalking people accompanied with denial, apologism, dilution and posturing. If you are going to question the value of privacy or diminish the danger of surveillance you might as well question democracy and human rights. This is what apologism does, reduces discussion to basic first principles.
This is what greed and money does to people, and why regulations and rule of law is required to cement and reiterate the values a society subscribes to.
With how Microsoft has ruined Windows and having awful experiences with several Windows based laptops this year (XPS 15, Surface Book 2, ThinkPad X1 Carbon) I decided to switch to a MacBook Pro two months ago when the 2018 models came out.
I haven't been this happy using a computer in a long, long time. Yes this MBP cost me about £800 more than an equivalent Dell or Lenovo but damnit it just works so well. There is no frustrating corner cutting like I found on so-called 'premium' laptops from Dell, Lenovo and Microsoft such as panels with backlight bleed, poor audio, wifi issues, etc.
It has been so good that today I did something I haven't done in over a decade. I pre-ordered an iPhone Xs Max. I don't have any real functionality issues with Android but I am happy to be getting away from Google.
Now I just need to find a reliable alternative to G Suite and I can be Google free!
Moreover it's interesting to see how Apple is marketing durability with new iPhones... some of this is a byproduct of their environment strategy, i.e to reuse parts and thus generate less waste and perhaps is economically sound in the long run. But as a consumer, when you are spending that much money, you are going to decide on durability rather than how environmentally friendly it is - although for apple both mean same thing.
When the market is already saturated with smartphones, the new features and technology in each new release have become incremental. Also it's easier to do much more with the software.
Adding more hardware in a already complex, miniaturized device is difficult and may take more than the 2 year cycle...
As someone once said very eloquently on this forum: Apple is a consumer product company and makes money selling you products, while others (Google, Facebook, etc) are ad platforms companies making money selling you as a product.
It's in Apple's best interest to keep your data safe and confidential, unlike other internet giants.
When i had to chose a online photos storage provider, the choice was clear, for that very reason.
Is it though? Is there any reason to believe that a significant amount of people buy Apple products because they believe it to be more private?
My impression is that the vast majority of users don't care about privacy - no matter how much privacy apple adds to their product, it's becomes moot the moment you are active from facebook, or use google products - which practically everyone does.
The data they link to is pretty interesting. In  there is an interesting chart. On page 578 (next page has the chart the article refers to, this is the table for it) it shows that from 1980-2014 the top 0.001%'s post-tax income growth grew 616%, the top 1%'s grew 194%, top 10%'s 113%, and the middle 40% grew 49% (full population grew 61%). They also compare this to the growth from 1946-1980, where the growth was more evenly spread out. The top 10% had growth rates that were multiples of their pre 1980 growth rates, while everyone below the 10% had fractions.
Testing the hypothesis: if that was true that all those new iPhone do not matter that much, Wall Street analysts would take a hard look at what is the gross margin of the Apple's new best product (privacy) and Apple stock price would take a serious hit.
Looking at the evidence: AAC stock price is super high
Alternative hypothesis: some people will buy Apple products for tribal reasons, no matter what the quality over price ratio is, and find a rationalization after the fact to justify it.
When plenty of smart people are doing something you’re not, there’s often a good reason why. Rather than dismiss it as “tribal” did you buy or borrow an iPhone or ask them why?
I’ve used a bunch of Android phones at work and a bunch of iPhones.
If you’re a hacker who wants to mess with their phone, want customisation, or don’t have more money, then an Android makes sense.
Other than that, buy an iPhone. You’ll spend more time getting things done, more things will “just work”, and it’ll break less often and have fewer bugs. The design is great, the aesthetics of the X are wonderful.
And then there’s privacy. Apple are hammering it because (a) Tim Cook sees it as a priority, for rather obvious reasons, and (b) it’s a competitive advantage that Google will never be able to counter unless they stop basing their business on adverts. Good. Let’s hope they hammer it more and more and force google to change. Android in its current spyware form is not a good thing.
As a very long time Android user (since HTC Hero), I've recently switched to the IPhone for the exact same reason. I was a big fan back then, but lately I'm starting to be put off by Google, for instance the late reveal of mettling in the US election etc. At least you gotta give Google for partially admitting it by removing the "Don't be evil" motto back in 2015. It's only MS, Apple or open source here from now on...
In terms of privacy, Apple seems so far ahead of the industry it's practically shocking. I paid the invoice from Namecheap for a domain renewal last night and when downloading the receipt, I noticed a network call to Facebook[dot]com. Turns out it was hitting some telemetry API and logging my order ID, session token, transaction ID, and other stuff like my screen resolution and who knows what else. Like... what?
All companies that are dependent on ad money have cognitive dissonence, in that most “care” about their users but the users are not their customer anymore. They eventually revert to only providing enough value to keep users, or try to lock in users via monopolies or legal means so they can spend resources on ad technology or enablers of them.
I agree with the assessment in the article. Having said that, I wonder if it's possible to port iOS to run on Android devices? In other words, how different is Apple's custom designed silicon vs. Qualcom and others ARM design?
The problem here now we have a choice between a bit open phones tracking all your activities and a more closed platform that values privacy more. That's very far from ideal and a new player could bring a lot of fresh air here.
Sadly also Apple collects data on their users. Last year around 300TB a day on what users search for, which apps they use, how many times, where you click and navigate through the OS and in the apps, etc. :(
The Verizon "supercookie" is an HTTP header they add to your traffic. They do it via deep packet inspection, not anything on the device, and it affects iOS as well. After they got caught doing this they added the option to opt out at the account level.
I'm glad privacy is a valued feature and wish it were the norm.
But more importantly, I come to HN to learn news or tools for programming. Less of this sponsored content and more "Show HN: Here's how I used computer vision to make a robot throw spoons only and specifically at my roommate, Tom."
Yes, if you stick to the first paragraph of an article, you'll often miss its main point. Scroll just a little down:
> I now believe the best product Apple offers is intangible, yet far more valuable than a flagship smartphone. The best product Apple has–and the single biggest reason that consumers should choose an Apple device over competing devices–is privacy.
Wow this author is a total idrone. I'm not saying Google is better, in fact some of her points may even be correct. They probably do collect less personal data than an Android device. The question is are you willing to pay in on average at least $200 more for a phone? I'm not that's for sure.
Apple could market their pro-privacy stance more aggressively, or at all. As it is, they could change it at any time. For example, if market conditions are changing, selling access to Apple's valuable user base should be extremely tempting for compensation. If OTOH they emphasize their privacy stance with all their marketing prowess, this certainly will make mainstream consumers consider "privacy" a value in itself.
It wasn't battery life, it was stability. The day Apple brought out the feature toggle for you to choose whether you wanted to throttle your device or not, I turned the throttling off. The phone was as fast as when I got it again.
That same day the phone crashed, a first in a long time, because apparently the power draw was too high for the battery. Imagine if, instead of throttling, they had phones crashing left and right. I think throttling was the right choice, but they could have been more transparent about it.
I wouldn't trust apple for multiple reasons:
* because they agree (or at least help) censorship in china it shows that they do not care about the user, they do what is best for them and if that is sharing data with anyone they will do it. It don't understand why apple would help a governments with bad intention in china and not the rest of the world.
* secondly if they really want to protect your privacy why don't they open source some parts of their systems and let people build it (compile) themselves. eg: the T2 chip could be a backdoor, who can prove it's not?
- Once upon a time, we all rallied around Google and it's "Don't be evil" mantra and Google seemed privacy-focused. Then that went away.
- Apple marketing is currently hyping privacy, but they still collect a staggering amount of telemetry from devices. They still hold a lot of our data that is not encrypted at rest. Some day, their touted stance on privacy will change.
I feel like people are blaming the tech companies for their own flaws. As Homer Simpson once said: "It's easy to blame ourselves, but it's even easier to blame Flanders."
The targeted ads and (fake or not) news are not what's "threatening democracy". It's an ignorant populace that doesn't know how to evaluate credibility of news sources, or open themselves to multiple viewpoints (e.g., you can read Fox News and the NYTimes!)
Bad politicians were able to get elected long before the Internet came along.
Personally, I love the benefits of Google's ecosystem. It's handy. I use Facebook, but only for Messenger and events. I resist the urge to read the news on my feed. Apple's products are nice but Siri is garbage and I like the cloud.
> "...we live in a commercial surveillance state. Well, unless you use Apple’s products."
The cringe train is arriving at the station.
> "When you pay that extra money for an Apple product, you’re not just buying better industrial design or more advanced underlying tech–you’re buying the right to keep more information about yourself to yourself."
All aboard the cringe train.
This article could have been written by a bot, instructed to talk favorably about Apple and privacy. Tech journos are funny when they expose their brand crushes.
Ha. I strongly disagree, for many reasons. The main one being that they have such terrible software devs (sorry but lately every Apple release was a fiasco) that they couldn't possibly have a "safe" and "private" environment, not intentionally obviously, but they keep showing their lack of concern and involvement time after time.
So in your opinion APFS ins't a failure that barely worked for about half a year after it's public release ?
Caused problems for almost every software where a patch was needed by the devs (namely docker, sure you could find more examples).
I actually had to reformat my drive because Disk Util.app on a APFS formatted drive could not handle bootcamp correctly on release and it foobared my entire drive.
To their credit they get it right when you give them some months and a userbase of millions of people. I simply wish they did all that before they actually publicly release their latest botch and enable it by default on every device.