The quest to rebuild civilization following the collapse of the Galactic Empire will continue, as Apple has announced that it will renew “Foundation” for a third season.
“This time, the stakes for Foundation and Empire are even higher as the Mule takes center stage, along with fan-favorites Bayta, Toran, Ebling and Magnifico Giganticus,” showrunner and executive producer David S. Goyer said in a press release.
Skydance Television produces the show and features a talented cast, including Emmy-nominated actors Jared Harris and Lee Pace, Lou Llobell, Leah Harvey, Laura Birn, Cassian Bilton, and Terrence Mann.
“To watch ‘Foundation’ become such a global hit has been beyond exciting with audiences around the world continuing to be captivated week after week by this dramatic and compelling journey to save humanity,” said Matt Cherniss, head of programming for Apple TV+.
Apple has released new firmware for its AirPods Pro 2, though it is only for versions equipped with Lightning for charging, not USB-C.
The update brings the personal audio accessories to build number 6B34, 6.1.34. As usual, Apple doesn’t provide release notes, but the updates typically include performance improvements and bug fixes.
Apple’s last update for the AirPods Pro 2 was on November 9, marking its third firmware release for the model.
Unlike devices like an iPhone or iPad, you can’t manually update the AirPods Pro 2. Instead, the firmware will install itself automatically when the AirPods Pro are placed in the charging case and connected to an iOS device.
How to check your AirPods firmware version
AirPods users can check the current firmware for their audio accessories by accessing the Settings app on their iPhone or iPad.
Open the Settings App
Select the AirPods you wish to view
A menu will appear showing relevant device information
Apple hands out release candidates for iOS 17.2 & iPadOS 17.2
Apple is providing testers in its developer beta program with the release candidates of iOS 17.2 and iPadOS 17.2, meaning a release is in the near future.
Developers signed up to test betas can pick up the latest builds via the Apple Developer Center, or by updating their iPhone or iPad through the Settings app options. Public betas typically surface a short while after the developer versions, and public participants can sign up through the Apple Beta Software Program website.
The RC versions of iOS 17.2 and iPadOS 17.2 arrive after the fourth betas, which Apple distributed on Novembeer 28, while the third arrived on November 14. The second landed on November 9, while the first were introduced on October 26.
The release candidates’ build number is 21C62, replacing the fourth, build number 21C5054b.
Numerous changes were added in the first iOS 17.2 beta,including Journal, a privacy-focused journaling app. The Apple TV app also has more emphasis on channels under Watch Now.
A Favorites Playlist has been added to Apple Music, along with collaborative playlists. iMessage sticker reactions allow users to react with a sticker, but as an attached sticker instead of an integrated tapback.
Other alterations include being able to assign Translate to the Action button, additional Weather widgets, iMessage Contact Key Verification, and an Apple Music Focus Filter.
The second beta added Spatial Video recording for the iPhone 15 Pro, which could help Apple Vision Pro users who want to try out the related imaging features.
In the fourth beta, Apple solved an audio issue by allowing users to change the default alert sound for notifications.
AppleInsider and Apple strongly suggest users don’t install test operating systems or other beta or RC software on “mission-critical” or primary devices, as there is the small chance of issues that could result in the loss of data. Testers should instead use secondary or non-essential hardware and ensure they have sufficient backups of their critical data at all times.
How a MacBook Pro got me back into PC gaming | Digital Trends
I have fond memories of the old days of PC gaming. That is, the old days for me. Games like Starcraft and Elder Scrolls: Morrowind had a big impact — but honestly, it’s remembering the endless hours of Baldur’s Gate II: Shadows of Amn that ring my nostalgia bell the loudest.
But somewhere along the way, I more or less retired from regular gaming. Between reaching my mid-30s, getting some new hobbies, being married, buying a house, and having kids, I wasn’t finding a lot of time or energy for the old pastime. It sounds stereotypical, I know, but its sadly true.
Then a laptop came around called the M3 Max MacBook Pro, along with a little game called Baldur’s Gate 3. And bam — all of a sudden, I was 13 again, compelled by an expansive game world and a convenient means to easily get there.
It’s all about convenience
Baldur’s Gate II came out in the year 2000. I’m not going to try and pretend I remember the details of all my experience with this game, but let’s just say I wasn’t a hardcore PC gamer at the age of 13. I played it on whatever computer my parents happened to have, which was primarily used to access AOL. It was the same beige computer on which I did homework assignments, chatted on AIM, and made my first MySpace account.
The metaphor isn’t perfect, but being drawn to Baldur’s Gate 3 on the M3 Max MacBook Pro felt a lot like that for me. These days, you’re not going to play AAA PC games by accident. You need some dedicated hardware to make those games work well, and most of it is targeted specifically at that demographic. That is, for the most part, has been a good thing. But that’s definitely not what the M3 Max MacBook Pro is. Even as it’s launched its own gaming service in Apple Arcade, Apple has always seemed to hold the PC gaming community at arm’s length. There are signs of that changing in the near future, but we’re still in the beginning stages.
I’ve been using the 14-inch M3 Max MacBook Pro for the past month or so, and wrote the initial review of it after it launched in November. The most notable thing about it is the huge boost in graphics with the M3 Max. The previous versions were powerful, but for the first time, the hardware here felt capable enough to handle many of the latest flagship PC games without sacrificing too much in settings. And hey — Baldur’s Gate 3 just so happens to be one of the big new titles to run natively on Macs.
It’s not just the fact that it can handle a game like Baldur’s Gate 3. It’s that it handles it like a dream. Unlike almost every gaming laptop I’ve ever used, the temperature on the surface of the device never gets uncomfortably hot, and the fan noise doesn’t overpower the fantastic speakers. You can even play this game unplugged from the wall without a discernible drop in performance.
I have to mention the screen too. Gaming laptops are finally starting to catch up with some of the mini-LED displays out there, but the XDR display on the MacBook Pro is still unbeaten in terms of quality. The colorful and detailed world of Baldur’s Gate 3 looks gorgeous in HDR — a perfect match for the the MacBook Pro’s bright, bold screen. Throw in the ProMotion 120Hz refresh rate and the clarity of its glossy screen, and you have a visual feast accessible right at your fingertips. It’s even one of the few games you can comfortably play right on the trackpad, which is a huge convenience factor. I know that sounds crazy — but trust me, it works.
All of that means I have an incredible gaming experience on the same laptop that I’ve been composing articles on, writing emails, and taking Zoom calls. It’s right there, just like that beige box I used back in the early 2000s in my parent’s basement. And that accessibility has made it far easier to jump in here and there when I have the time.
Of course, a MacBook Pro alone isn’t enough to get me hooked on a game. I needed something that reached deep into my brain and tapped a nerve of pure nostalgia and joy. And for me, that’s exactly what Baldur’s Gate 3 offered.
I’m happy to admit that nostalgia plays such a big role in my connection to Baldur’s Gate 3. Like my resurged obsession with embarrassing 2000s-era pop punk, I should have known that the game to get me back into gaming would be something directly tied to my adolescence. Because that’s exactly what Baldur’s Gate 3 is — old school in all the best ways.
Rather than adopt a more modern storytelling style or updated combat mechanics, Baldur’s Gate 3 feels almost relentlessly determined to stay true to its roots as a Dungeons and Dragons tabletop adventure. The absorbing story doesn’t rely on extravagant cut scenes and cinematic drama, but instead on dialogue trees, digital dice rolling, and choices you make. It seems to revel in just how nerdy it is too — never wincing away at less dorky costumes, characters, and storylines. And that’s exactly what makes it so charming and unique.
Heck, for me, even the frustrating bits are nostalgia bait. It’s clunky at times, there are plenty of graphical glitches, and sometimes I’m really not sure what I’m supposed to be doing. If you spent time PC gaming in the early 2000s, all of that should be familiar territory.
In all my time trying out new devices and testing out games on them, I’ve never felt drawn to go beyond what I needed to properly evaluate the product. It’s not that there haven’t been games that intrigued me over the years. Of course not. A brief stint in Halo Infinite was the last time a game like this grabbed me, and it was for very similar reasons. But as life has gotten busier, the barrier of entry of time and convenience keeps getting higher and higher.
Being absorbed into a game like Baldur’s Gate 3 on a MacBook Pro somehow smashed its way through that barrier, and left me reminiscing about when PC games, technology, and life itself was a bit simpler.
Jamf shares exploit that fools users into believing their hacked iPhone is safe
If an iPhone has already been infected with malware, Jamf has shown how an attacker can trick the user into believing Lockdown Mode is active when it isn’t.
Despite popular belief, iPhones can get infected with malware — but it is rare. Attackers taking advantage of zero-day vulnerabilities and zero-click exploits can infect a user’s device — though these sophisticated attacks are often expensive and difficult to execute.
Jamf Threat Labs has worked out a proof-of-concept post-exploitation tampering technique that makes an iPhone behave like it is in Lockdown Mode when it isn’t. The user can toggle Lockdown Mode and will see visual cues, like an apparent device restart and warnings in Safari that trick the user into a false sense of security.
This isn’t a flaw with Lockdown Mode, iPhone security, or the operating system. The tampering technique only works on devices that have already been infected with malware.
Jamf researched this proof-of-concept to emphasize that Lockdown Mode has limitations. It is a shield that reduces the attack surface on an iOS device, not anti-malware that detects infections and ejects them.
Lockdown Mode is most effective when used on a device before an attack occurs. It reduces the number of entry points available for an attacker.
Warnings tell the user Lockdown Mode is being activated
A system reboot can help stop malware from monitoring the user, but Jamf found a way to force a userspace reboot instead of a system reboot. That way, the injected code can maintain adaptable control over Lockdown Mode.
Lockdown Mode performs several actions, most of which are invisible to the user.
Messages — Most message attachments are blocked, and some features are unavailable.
FaceTime — Incoming FaceTime calls from people you have not previously called are blocked.
Web Browsing — Some web technologies and browsing features are blocked.
Shared Albums — Shared albums will be removed from the Photos app, and new Shared Albums invitations will be blocked.
Device Connections — Wired connections with another device or accessory are blocked while your iPhone is locked.
Apple Services — Incoming invitations for Apple Services from people you have not previously invited are blocked.
Profiles — Configuration profiles, such as profiles for school or work, cannot be installed.
Those activating Lockdown Mode may not be familiar with everything it does, so Jamf feels that manipulating only a few points can trick users into that false sense of security. For example, they altered an alert in Safari that shows up when Lockdown Mode is active.
Lockdown Mode in Safari
As was shared before, this tampering technique is only possible on an iPhone that has already been infected by malware. Sophisticated attacks like these are too expensive and difficult to execute without significant resources, so regular users who aren’t diplomats or political journalists likely never need to worry about such security risks.
Apple made it clear at launch that Lockdown Mode is for specific kinds of people at high risk of attacks. Turning on the feature reduces the available feature set of an iPhone and could lead users to think their device is broken. If you need to turn it on, you’ll know.
Beeper has produced an Android app that is claimed to actually work with Apple’s iMessage system, enabling Android users to communicate with Phone users and displaying blue bubbles, not green ones.
Apple’s use of blue and green speech bubbles in its Messages app has influenced smartphone-buying decisions in some cases, due to users wanting to avoid having the socially-awkward green text background in text-based conversations with friends. Weeks after one failed attempt to solve the problem, another has seemingly come to light.
Announced on Tuesday, Beeper Mini from Beeper is an Android app that is designed to work with Apple’s iMessage platform. The change means an Android device user can now have a conversation with an iPhone user, with the Android device’s messages appearing in blue instead of the tell-tale green speech bubble.
Furthermore, the app will allow users to join iPhone-only group chats via their phone number. It will also work with all of the typical Messages features, including the typing status, read receipts, images and video, reactions, voice messaging, and editing and unsending messages.
While Nothing’s attempt to do the same thing failed due to it involving a remote server acting as an intermediary, one that was astoundingly insecure, Beeper’s method goes the more direct route.
Instead of using a relay, Beeper Mini connects to Apple’s servers directly. The communications are also encrypted end-to-end, with keys kept on the user’s device, and without Beeper needing to have access to a user’s Apple account either.
While using Apple’s services, Beeper Mini also incorporates Android’s Material Design principles, so it doesn’t look out of place on an Android smartphone.
Though Beeper Mini’s main feature is all about clean communications between Android and Apple users, it won’t be limited to just iMessage. Connectivity with up to 15 chat networks are planned, including WhatsApp and Signal, complete with end-to-end encryption where possible.
Beeper Mini costs $1.99 per month after the initial seven-day trial, and is available from the Google Play Store.
Apple wants India to exempt older iPhone models from single-charger rules
A USB-C cable
Apple has urged the Indian IT ministry to make changes to its single charger rules, as adding USB-C to older iPhone models will make it hard for Apple to meet production targets for India’s manufacturing and export laws.
Following after the European Union’s introduction of regulations that will force electronics producers to use USB-C as part of a common charger directive, India followed suit with its own variation of the mandate. However, Apple is one of the few companies pushing back on its implementation.
Apple met with India’s IT ministry in a closed-door meeting on November 28, reportsReuters, asking officials to add exemptions to the rules for some older models of iPhone.
While the EU’s rules effectively apply only against newly designed and released products after the rules come into force in 2024, India’s version does not. Instead, it applies to all electronic devices sold in the country, which also includes hardware that wasn’t previously designed with USB-C.
To Apple, this wrinkle means it would have to incorporate USB-C into the designs of older Lightning-equipped iPhone models to continue selling them in India.
Apple told the regulators that implementing the changes would mean it won’t be able to “meet the PLI targets,” minutes from the meeting state. PLI, India’s Production-Linked Incentive scheme, is a major project of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, providing manufacturers with financial incentives for investments and incremental annual phone sales.
The use of USB-C in the iPhone 15 means Apple meets the criteria for the rules with its current-gen hardware. However, the bulk of its sales in India are based around older iPhone generations.
Apple says it can comply with a timeline for compliance by June 2025 if existing models are exempted from the rules. Otherwise, it would need another 18 months beyond 2024 if there isn’t an exemption.
Armed robbers reject smartphone because it wasn’t an iPhone
An Android smartphone and an iPhone
An armed robbery of an Uber Eats driver ended unexpectedly, with the thieves handing back the victim’s Android smartphone because they wanted an iPhone instead.
Smartphones are often taken in thefts, typically because of the high value of the device. In one unusual robbery, thieves rejected the smartphone, because it didn’t suit their taste.
A man in Northwest Washington D.C. parked his car before heading to his apartment early in the morning, according to his wife in an interview withABC7. Wishing not to be identified, the wife recounted what happened in the November 30 incident.
Two masked and armed men approached and robbed the victim after he had parked the car, in the 2400 block of 14th Street NW. While one walked up to the victim, the other drove in a black BMW.
The thieves were thorough, taking “everything he had in his pockets, took the keys to my truck and got in and pulled off,” said the wife. While they did take everything from the man, they did change their mind about the smartphone, and handed it back.
“They basically looked at that phone and was like Oh, that’s an Android? We don’t want this. I thought it was an iPhone,” the woman continued.
The decision was an oddity for a harrowing situation, which deeply impacted the couple. “That was my income,” the woman said. “That was the way I made money. I did Uber Eats and Instacart so, that was our livelihood.”
The theft of an item like an iPhone can often involve a gang using sophisticated techniques to earn money from the devices, such as by shipping it to China to be used for parts.
The choice to actually hand back the Android smartphone because it wasn’t an iPhone seems to indicate the robbery wasn’t by a gang interested in smartphones to begin with. Given they were more interested in everything else, including a vehicle, they probably had other priorities.
The robbery coincidentally took place on the same day as a public hearing on a surge in crime and a proposed bill to fight it. During the event, D.C. Police Chief Pamela Smith saw some promising changes, including a 7% reduction in car jackings since July, 6% fewer instances of assault with a dangerous weapon, and an 11% reduction in vehicle theft.
Pick Up a 16-Inch MacBook Pro for $1,799, plus free 2-day shipping to qualifying addresses
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AppleInsider readers can pick up an M1 Pro MacBook Pro 16-inch for just $1,799 in addition to free 2-day shipping within the contiguous U.S.
16-inch MacBook Pro $1,799 with coupon
To take advantage of the $1,799 holiday price at Apple Authorized Reseller Adorama.com, enter promo code APINSIDER during Step 3 of checkout. The $100 coupon discount stacks with the $600 instant rebate already in place on the standard M1 Pro MacBook Pro 16-inch in Space Gray, bringing the total savings to $700 off. This config has 16GB of memory and a 512GB SSD.
What’s more, Adorama is throwing in free 2-day shipping on orders shipped to a street address within the contiguous U.S. for fast delivery to your door just in time for holiday gift-giving.
If you need help activating the APINSIDER promo code at Adorama, here are step-by-step instructions to redeem the discount:
Proceed to checkout and and look for a link with a gift icon that says: “Do you have a gift card or promo code?” when you get to step 3 (Payment section).
Click that to bring up the promo code field and enter APINSIDER. Here’s what it looks like:
Save on even more holiday gifts with these deals
With the holidays underway, there are plenty of deals available to score the perfect gift for a fraction of the retail cost. Check out more of our favorite deals below and compare prices on our Apple Price Guide.
Safari tab groups have been in iPadOS for several years, and can really help you organize pages you’ve browsed. Here’s how to use them in iPadOS 17.
Tabs in Safari in iOS and iPadOS allow you to open multiple web pages at once – with each page in a separate tab. This makes reading quicker.
A few years ago, Apple added Tab Groups to Safari in iOS and iPadOS, which allows you to group tabs by category into groups with names you define. Each tab group has a name you give it, and you can add multiple web pages in tabs to each group.
Tab groups in iPadOS provide convenience by keeping multiple open tabs organized and under control.
In iPadOS 17, Apple lets you use tab groups in multiple ways. You can:
Create new tab groups
Add new web pages or favorites to existing groups
Switch between tab groups in the sidebar
View tab groups in the Start Page pane
Apple calls groups in the Favorites sidebar “Tab Group Favorites”.
Getting started with tabs in Safari on iPadOS
To use tab groups in Safari for iPadOS, you’ll first want to open one or more web page tabs in Safari.
You can do this by tapping the + button at the top right corner of Safari, by opening an existing bookmark from the Safari Favorites page, or by opening an existing Start Page or Home Screen shortcut you’ve saved which points to a web page.
Or you can click the + button and then type or paste in a web URL at the top of the Safari window.
Once you have multiple web page tabs open in Safari, you’re ready to create tab groups or add pages to existing tab groups.
Creating tab groups in Safari
To create a new tab group in Safari on iPadOS, first tap the sidebar icon in the upper-left corner, then tap the button to the right with the + in it:
This presents a menu containing a single item; New Empty Tab Group. After you tap it, note the “Done” button on the right.
Tap “New Empty Tab Group”.
Next, you’ll be prompted to enter a name for the new tab group, so add a name and then tap Save. This adds a new tab group with the new name in the sidebar on the left:
Give the new tab group a name.
At this point, you now have a new tab group which automatically contains all the tabs you had open when you created the new tab group. You can repeat this process as many times as you like – creating multiple tab groups, each containing a different set of open tabs.
To switch between tab groups, simply tap one of the named tab groups from the list in the sidebar on the left. This switches between sets of open web page tabs all at once.
You can hide and show the sidebar at will by tapping the icon in the upper left corner of Safari repeatedly.
Tab group favorites in the Start Page
After creating tab groups, if you now go to any Start Page in Safari by tapping the + button in Safari’s upper right corner, then tap any tab group in the sidebar, you’ll now see a tab group favorites section with the same name at the top of the Start Page above all individual favorites.
If you tap other tab groups in the sidebar, the Start Page’s tab group favorites section changes to the name of the tab group and displays a large + button in it.
If you tap the large + button, you’ll be presented with a Bookmarks menu containing several items, one of which is Tab Group Favorites:
Bookmarks with Tab Group Favorites.
If you tap this menu item, a submenu will be displayed showing all tab groups by name. This allows you to select any bookmarked tab in a tab group and add it to the tab group you started with.
This can be a bit confusing at first, but once you’ve done it a few times, you’ll get the hang of it.
Select any bookmarked tab from any tab group from the submenu to add it to the current tab group.
At the end of each of the displayed tab group submenus in the Bookmarks sheet above is a list of all currently bookmarked tabs in each tab group. Selecting any one bookmark from the Bookmarks sheet will add it back to the tab group pane on the Start Page where you began (next to the original large + button you tapped.
One important thing to note here is that merely having tabs open in any tab group is different from bookmarking them in a tab group.
Moving, pinning, closing, and arranging tabs in tab groups
Back in Safari’s main window, if you press and hold on any open tab, you’ll get a small popover menu that contains several items:
Move to Tab Group
Arrange Tabs By
Close Other Tabs
Press and hold a web page tab to get the popover menu.
Selecting Pin Tab moves the tab to the far left of Safari’s window, pins it there, and adds a thumbtack icon to the tab. This lets you know that the tab can’t be moved until you unpin it.
Selecting Move to Tab Group presents several options:
New Tab Group
Names of all existing tab groups
From this submenu you can either create a new tab group like you did above, send the tab to the Start Page, or move it to any existing tab group by name.
Selecting any tab group name from the submenu closes the pressed tab and sends it to that tab group.
Use the submenu to move tabs to other groups, and arrange or close them.
If you select Arrange Tabs By it displays a submenu with two options: Arrange Tabs by Title and Arrange Tabs by Website
Arranging tabs by title sorts and repositions the tabs alphabetically, while arranging tabs by website reorders them so all tabs from each site are ordered next to each other.
If you select Close Tab it simply closes the pressed tab taking no further action.
If you select Close Other Tabs it closes all the other open tabs in the current tab group except the one that was pressed.
Adding tabs to tab groups Favorites manually
Once you have all your tabs and tab groups set up the way you like, you can also add any existing tab to any tab group Favorites list.
To do so, single-tap any existing tab, then tap the share sheet icon in the upper right corner of Safari’s window.
This presents a popover with several items for adding the tab to Favorites, but now one of them is Add to “Name” Favorites where “Name” is the currently selected tab group in the sidebar.
Selecting this menu item adds the current tab to the currently selected tab group Favorites list. The next time you tap that tab group in the sidebar, the Favorited tab will show up in the tab group’s Favorites section on the Start Page.
Tap the Share Sheet icon to add an existing tab into a tab group’s Favorites.
This can be a little confusing – you’re essentially bookmarking the current tab into the Start Page, but only for the tab group indicated in the share sheet’s Favorites popover menu.
You can also search tabs for text you want to find. To do so, tap the small icon with two squares in the upper right corner of Safari’s window.
This opens the tabs search pane and shrinks all open tabs into thumbnails. Any pinned tabs appear as page titles only with a thumbtack icon at the top of the pane:
Now you can type text into the search box at the top of the pane to search all open tabs.
Tap Cancel, then Done to return to Safari’s main window.
Removing tab groups
To remove a tab group from your iPad or iPhone, press and hold a tab group by name in the sidebar, then select Delete from the popover menu.
You can also rename tab groups and show all tabs in a tab group in the sidebar from the popover.
The addition of tab groups in Safari makes opening and managing large sets of web pages easy. By organizing open pages by tab groups, and using tab group favorites, it’s easy to switch between different sets of data with a few taps.
For example, you might have one tab group for work, one for personal use, family, entertainment, or research topics. When you want to switch contexts, just select a tab group to return to all the tabs you had open for that topic.
Tab groups make Safari and surfing the web on iOS and iPadOS devices much faster and more enjoyable.