Would Apple be more upset at the use of its products in a crime, or the general shoddiness of the execution? Photo:Greater Manchester Police
Looking for a use for that old iPod nano you’ve got lying around the house, gathering dust? Why not become a credit card thief?
Okay, so that’s probably the worst piece of advice you’ve received today, but it was still good enough for a pair of ne’er-do-wells from Stockport, England.
Using an iPod nano, a bit of duct tape, and a plastic contraption which attaches to the card slot of ATMs, the duo discovered a way to record videos of people entering their PIN numbers to withdraw money — using Apple’s one-time music players as a makeshift spy camera.
Staff Sgt. Ben Eberle’s prosthetic hand is controlled using his iPod touch.
Normally a story about a stolen iPod touch wouldn’t be worthy of major news coverage. That changes, however, when the iPod touch in question is used to control its war veteran owner’s prosthetic hand.
The iPod touch belongs to Afghanistan vet Staff Sgt. Ben Eberle, 27, who lost both his right hand and two legs in a bomb explosion three years ago while on a tour of duty. The device features an app called i-limb, which allows Eberle to use his prosthetic hand.
There are different ways to measure the success of a tech company — thing like how many lucrative patents it’s sitting on, how much money it’s giving back to shareholders, and what its overall market penetration is in whatever area it’s operating in.
Well, there’s another way also: how much do its product launches correlate with a spike rates. You can keep your reports about Apple’s recent financial quarters disappointing Wall Street analysts — as far as San Francisco’s criminal element is concerned, Apple is doing better than it has in years.
In 2011, Jayna Murray was slowly, brutally murdered at a Lululemon shop in a Bethesda, Maryland shopping area. She was bludgeoned with a hammer, slashed over 320 times with a box cutter, then strangled to death. Next door at the Apple Store, employees heard her tortuous screams, but didn’t lift a finger. Not to help her. Not to call the police. Nothing. It was just a day after the iPad 2 launched.
Although no one in the Apple Store was complicit in the murders, it was still a PR disaster for Apple’s retail outlet. Now a new book called The Yoga Store Murder by Washington Post reporter Dan Morse delves into the murder and its aftermath.
If there seems to be one universal law of commerce, it is this: If you purchase an iPhone from a strange man in the back of a Burger King parking lot who you initially contacted through Craigslist, it is a fact that there will be anything except an iPhone in the box he sells you.
This is a law of commerce more nitwits should probably internalize, since yet another poor sucker has fallen for this classic ploy, with one important difference: It was a McDonald’s! Dum dum DUM!
iPhone theft has become a huge issue in big city like New York City. In fact, Mayor Bloomberg says the iPhone was responsible for New York City’s first increase in crime in 20 years.
New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman is supposedly pretty tired of his constituents getting their iPhones stolen from them, so he’s written a public letter to Tim Cook asking why Apple isn’t doing more to stop iPhone theft.
On a vacation with his wife and kids recently, Paul Deas opened his suitcase and found a rude surprise: his MacBook had been stolen. Not only that, but the thief had helpfully left him a note inside, telling him exactly who had robbed him: TSA Agent 5414.
Late last year, Cult of Mac reported that New York City’s crime rate had increased for the first time in twenty years, not due to the resurgence of criminal gangs like the Warriors and the Baseball Furies, but because the iPhone was just such a popular thing to steal.
Why are criminals so interested in ripping off iPhones, though, and not, say, Samsung Galaxy S III’s? What it all comes down to is two things. One, the predictability of the resale market: you can predict what you can pawn an iPhone for, but other gadgets are harder. Two: an iPhone or iPad is easy to identify at a glance, where as other lucrative gadgets are harder to spot.