Popular messaging app blocked in Iran after creator refuses to turn spy

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Photo: Quixotic54/Flickr CC
Lotf Allah Mosque, Iran.
Photo: Photo: Quixotic54/Flickr CC

The maker of Telegram, a popular messaging app, has had his creation blocked in Iran on the grounds that he refused to help authorities to spy on their own citizens.

Creator Pavel Durov said that Iran’s Ministry of Information and Communications Technology asked him to provide them with “spying and censorship tools” for the service. When he refused, Telegram was quickly given the boot.

XcodeGhost hack: Delete these infected iOS apps immediately

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The App Store just experienced its worst security breach ever.
The App Store just experienced its worst security breach ever.
Photo: Apple

The App Store suffered its worst security breach in history over the weekend, when it was discovered that hundreds of Chinese apps have a malicious program dubbed ‘XcodeGhost’ embedded in their software.

The huge security lapse made its way into legitimate apps thanks to Chinese developers who used a counterfeit version of Apple’s Xcode software that was uploaded to file sharing service Baidu. By using XcodeGhost to compile their apps, developers accidentally allowed the malicious code to be distributed through the App Store.

Apple has pulled infected apps off the store to stop stop the spread, but users still need to delete XcodeGhost apps off their devices manually. Most of the apps infected are mostly used in China, however some big name apps like WeChat, Angry Birds 2, and Didi Chuxing (Uber’s biggest rival in China) were also hit.

Here’s a full list of infected apps:

Twitter for Mac’s anemic update is a total slap in the face

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twitter-for-mac
Twitter for Mac got an update no one asked for.
Photo: Twitter

Good news: the official Twitter app for Mac finally got some attention today for the first time in almost a year. It now supports direct messages without the 140-character limit. Bad news: that’s the only feature added in the update, rendering it so totally insignificant you’re probably considering donating a new coffee machine to the Twitter for Mac team.

We rounded up some of the very best apps for Hacking your Mac [Deals]

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This bundle of apps offers 10 different ways to maximize your Mac's performance.
This bundle of apps offers 10 different ways to maximize your Mac's performance.
Photo: Cult of Mac Deals

Beneath the keyboard of your Mac lies a vast ocean of untapped potential. We’ve assembled some of the best deals on the most powerful apps for drilling deep into those hidden reserves of functionality. From productivity-enhancing programs. to comprehensive hard-drive maintenance and unlocking hidden Mac OS functions, these app bundles are power-packed and priced to move.

A beautiful, elegant app to check your iPhone’s battery on your Apple Watch

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Save yourself energy while checking your iPhone's power.
This is the simplest, most elegant app for checking your iPhone's battery on your Apple Watch.
Photo: Thientam Beck

We all know that the Apple Watch doesn’t exactly have great battery life. At best, it’ll get you through the day. But, of course, one of the big sells of the Apple Watch is that it’ll save your iPhone battery life, because you don’t have to pull it out as much.

Of course, then you end up in a Catch-22. Your Apple Watch depends on your iPhone to work properly, but without pulling out your iPhone, you can’t tell how much battery you have left, therefore risking both your Apple Watch and your iPhone crapping out on you in the middle of the day. If only the Apple Watch could tell you your iPhone’s battery level.

It can’t, but luckily, there’s an app for that. And it might be the loveliest one yet.

Cracking down on police brutality? There’s an app for that

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Photo:
Mobile Justice CA app will help protect your rights. Photo: ACLU 

Whichever side of the political equation you fall, there’s no denying that complaints about police brutality are all over the news at the moment.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California thinks its got the solution, however: a new Mobile Justice CA app, designed to help individuals track and record misconduct among law enforcement officers.

Apple Store’s neutered Watch app won’t let you shop

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Photo: Apple
Photo: Apple

Amazon and Target have already embraced the wearable-future, where all the hassles of online shopping can be managed from your wrist. Today, the official Apple Store app is getting into the game too, with a new update that finally brings support for Apple Watch, even if it doesn’t have a buy button.

You won’t be able to purchase your next Apple Watch from your wrist, or check out different Sport band options, but there are still some pretty useful features for shoppers on-the-go.

Check out some of the things the neutered app can do:

This app will tell you if you’re going to die in a plane crash

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Screenshot: Cult of Mac
Screenshot: Cult of Mac

Sometimes it seems like there have been a lot of plane crashes lately. Between Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, Malaysia Airlines Flight 17/a>, and Transasia Airways Flight 235, it sometimes feels like there’s never been a worse time to fly.

Of course, that’s not true at all. There’s statistically almost zero chance at all of you dying in a plane crash, no matter how often you fly. And now there’s an app, specifically dedicated to assuaging your fears of dying in an aircraft.

iTunes 12.1 gives Mac users a sexy new Notification Center widget

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iTunes 12.1 gives Yosemite a new widget. Photo: Buster Hein/Cult of Mac
iTunes 12.1 gives Yosemite a new widget. Photo: Buster Hein/Cult of Mac

It’s been six months since Apple unveiled iTunes 12, the latest version of its multimedia mega-app. Updates since then have been few and far between, but today Apple released the first big one: iTunes 12.1, which introduced a swank new media control widget for Notification Center.

eBay is planning an Apple Watch app

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You might not know that you want an Apple Watch, but you do. Trust us. Photo: Apple
eBay is planning an Apple Watch app. Photo: Apple

At least one of the big boys is planning on developing an app for the Apple Watch. eBay has posted an ad listing, looking for a developer to help them come up with a bidding app for Cupertino’s new smartwatch.