Mozilla petitions Apple to boost privacy with rotating ad IDs

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ipad-pro-smart-keyboard-safari
Rotating advertiser IDs make a lot of sense.
Photo: Apple

Mozilla, the company behind Firefox, is calling for Apple to boost user privacy on iOS by introducing rotating advertiser IDs.

Most iPhone and iPad users don’t know that they can block access to their unique ID, Mozilla says. Regularly rotating IDs would make it harder for companies “to build profiles of us over time.”

Sign the petition to pressure Apple into making a change today.

Apple simplifies Face ID, iOS 12 and recycling in new ads

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Face ID ad
Did you know Face ID doesn't store photos of your face?
Photo: Apple

Apple goes back to the basics in a new set of ads today uploaded to YouTube.

Doing away with fancy effects, catchy music, and even its own hardware, it highlights some of the key features of Face ID and iOS 12. It also promotes its smartphone recycling program that’s open to all handsets — even if they’re not iPhones.

Hulu cuts price of ad-supported service, but Live TV costs more

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Hulu
Hulu is now more affordable.
Photo: Hulu

Hulu has slashed the price of its ad-supported plan, making the service more accessible to budget-conscious consumers.

It’s not all good news, however: Hulu’s Live TV plan, which offers access to more than 60 top channels live and on-demand, is now more expensive. The ad-free Hulu and Hulu + Spotify plans have not been changed.

Apple pulls third-party SDKs from Shazam in latest update

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Shazam on iPhone XS
The latest update is out now.
Photo: Apple

Apple has pulled all but one third-party SDK from Shazam in its latest update.

The move wipes out analytics firms, ad networks, open-source projects, and more — including Google AdMob, Facebook Ads, Amazon Ads, and DoubleClick. Only HockeyApp, a Microsoft platform for beta testing, is still available.

Spotify will soon ban accounts that use ad blockers

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Spotify Premium update October 2018
If you won’t listen to ads, you can’t use Spotify for free.
Photo: Spotify

You could soon see your Spotify account banned or shutdown completely if you use an ad blocker.

The music streaming service’s updated terms of service, which go into effect on March 1, now specifically state that using tools or modified apps to block ads is prohibited.

Hilarious new iPhone X ad imagines life as a quiz show

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Apple's new iPhone X ad shows the struggle we go through trying to remember passwords.
Apple's new iPhone X ad shows the struggle we go through trying to remember passwords.
Screenshot: Apple

Imagine you’re on a game show and the trivia answer you need to win is… the password you created for your online banking account.

This isn’t an elaborate form of hacking, it’s a funny new Apple advertisement that points out that Face ID saves us from ever having to remember passwords.

Apple users immune to Fortnite hack malware

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Fortnite mobile controller
If you don’t already have an MFi controller, get one!
Photo: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac

Fortnite’s staggering rise in popularity has inevitably attracted a large number of cheaters who use third-party hacks to gain an in-game advantage.

The hacks they’re using help them aim faster, fire their weapons quicker, and even slow down enemy players. They’re also spreading malware all over the web.

It’s thought tens of thousands of Fortnite players have been affected, but you have nothing to worry about if you play on Mac or iOS.

Facebook’s scary plan to record your conversations while you watch TV

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the Facebook logo on an iPhone 6 Plus
Facebook’s new patent is as worrying as it sounds.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Some believe Facebook is already using our smartphones to hear our private conversations. That’s not true, but the social network is certainly considering it.

Facebook has applied for a new patent that describes a method of tapping into our microphones to listen to our reactions to TV ads. It’s just as invasive as it sounds.

Spike Jonze’s brilliant HomePod ad wins major advertising award

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2019 Creative Marketer of the Year
Spike Jonze created one of Apple's all-time great ads.
Photo: Apple

Apple’s brilliantly creative HomePod ad, directed by Being John Malkovich helmer Spike Jonze, has won a top prize at the Association of Independent Commercial Producers Show at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

The awards were handed out on Thursday night. Apple shared the “Advertising Excellence/Single Commercial category” top spot with the absolutely hilarious “It’s a Tide Ad” Super Bowl series of ads for Tide. If you haven’t seen Apple’s excellent HomePod ad before, you can check it out below.