Former Apple product design engineer reveals how Apple runs its factories

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Instrumental CEO Anna-Katrina Shedletsky
Anna Katrina Shedletsky is a former Apple product design engineer who is using her experience to build AI that helps companies streamline manufacturing.
Photo: Instrumental

On this week’s Apple Chat (the podcast formerly known as Kahney’s Korner): I talk with former Apple product design engineer Anna-Katrina Shedletsky about her take on modern manufacturing and how AI will revolutionize factories. She introduces us to her new company, Instrumental, which is using machine learning to help manufacturers identify and fix problems on their assembly lines.

Using her hard-earned experience at Apple overseeing the production of the first Apple Watch and several generations of the iPod, Shedletsky says machine learning is coming fast to manufacturing. Amazingly, almost all consumer electronics products are still assembled by hand — including hundreds of millions of iPhones.

But that’s changing. Manufacturing is undergoing a huge sea change with the advance of robotics and AI.

Cult of Mac Magazine: Everything you need to know about HEIF, iOS 11 brings 5 different types of tap, and more!

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Cult of Mac Magazine
HEIF is the still-image version of the HVEC video format. Its main advantage for you and me is that photos saved in HEIF are roughly half the size of JPEGs, and of better quality.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

In this week’s Cult of Mac Magazine, we’re going to tell you everything you need to know about HEIF (High Efficiency Image File Format), Apple’s new photo format to replace JPEGs. Discover the many advantages HEIF has over JPEG.

Discover all the great ways to watch streaming soccer this summer on Apple TV with our handy list. Learn how to easily save lots of iMessage pictures and movies all at once toCult of Macthe iPhone Photos app.

And, save 20 percent off Dubai-based Ullu’s luxury Apple Watch bands only for the month of June! Check out lots of new arrivals in our Watch Store!

Click iTunes for a free subscription to Cult of Mac Magazine. Here are this week’s top stories.

The powerful iOS 11 features you haven’t heard of, this week on The CultCast

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iOS 11 WWDC Hero
This week we'll tell you about iOS 11's best lesser-known features.
Photo: Apple

This week on The CultCast: More of the powerful new iOS 11 features you’ve never heard of! Plus: The talented app that will harnesses the power of Apple’s new augmented reality features; Scott Forstall is back, and he’s sharing the bizarre story of how the original iPhone really came to be; and everything you need to know about HEIF, the JPEG-killing format Apple is adopting.

Our thanks to Blue Apron for supporting this episode. Blue Apron makes it easy to cook delicious meals at home. Get your first three meals free at BlueApron.com/CultCast.

Birth of the iPhone: How Apple turned clunky prototypes into a truly magical device

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iPhone 2G prototype
iPhone 2G prototype
Photo: Jim Abeles/Flickr CC

iPhone turns 10 The world had never seen anything like the iPhone when Apple launched the device on June 29, 2007. But the touchscreen device that blew everyone’s minds immediately didn’t come about so easily.

The iPhone was the result of years of arduous work by Apple’s industrial designers. They labored over a long string of prototypes and CAD designs in their quest to produce the ultimate smartphone.

This excerpt from my book Jony Ive: The Genius Behind Apple’s Greatest Products offers an inside account of the iPhone’s birth.

Leaked dummy unit provides new look at iPhone 8

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iPhone 8 dummy
Is this our best look yet at the iPhone 8?
Photo: Benjamin Geskin

An iPhone 8 “dummy unit” made from leaked parts give us an early glimpse at what Apple’s next big upgrade might look like.

Its form is similar to that of recent handsets like the iPhone 7, but with a larger edge-to-edge display that will help it compete with rivals like the Galaxy S8.

Tesla wants to create an Apple Music rival for its cars

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Apple Music
Elon Musk wants his cars to come with their own streaming music service.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Tesla is considering launching its own streaming music service, and it’s already in talks with players in the music industry about doing so.

According to a new report, Tesla has held conversations with all the major music labels about launching its service — which would come bundled with its cars, as opposed to being a standalone service like Apple Music.

India demands information about Apple’s investment plans

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spicesv2
The Indian government wants reassurances that Apple's serious about India.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

The Indian government has reportedly asked Apple for more in-depth details about what it offers in terms of job creation and investment, in exchange for the government offering it additional tax concessions within the country.

Apple’s been seeking tax concessions to set manufacturing facilities in India for some time, but has been rebuffed. Now that one of Apple’s suppliers, Wistron, is officially building iPhones in the country, it seems the Indian government is ready to reconsider. Maybe.