Posts Tagged ‘Apple’

The Lackluster WWDC 2017 Keynote

June 5, 2017

If you haven’t yet watched the WWDC 2017 Keynote, I can save you nearly two and a half hours of wasted time:

 

iOS 11 has a lot great features

watchOS 4 has a few good features

macOS High Sierra has a couple good features

iPad Pro has some good features

iMac Pro is ridiculously overpriced and not expandable (doesn’t ship until December)

MacBook Pro still has too little power, too little battery life, a substandard keyboard, an unnecessarily large trackpad, a maximum of 16 GB of memory, and is still overpriced

Mac Mini and Mac Pro weren’t even mentioned, and both haven’t been upgraded in years

HomePod: an overpriced speaker to compete in the shrinking Sonos market (doesn’t ship until December)

 

No tvOS update

No new Apple Watch

No new Mac Mini

No new Mac Pro

No new AirPort

No new Server.app

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Apple Watch, diabetes, and security

May 20, 2017

There have a been some rumors lately of Apple testing a monitor for blood sugar. Recent comments by Tim Cook suggest that such a monitor might be non-invasive:

“It’s mentally anguishing to stick yourself many times a day to check your blood sugar,” he said. “There is lots of hope out there that if someone has constant knowledge of what they’re eating, they can instantly know what causes the response… and that they can adjust well before they become diabetic.”

If Apple has developed this technique for accurately measuring blood sugar, they could save lots of lives, and Apple Watch sales could really take off to the point that it becomes a mainstream product like the iPhone.

Now, I’ve long assumed that Apple takes adequate steps to insure that private data remains secure, but I’ve also recently discovered from Apple Support that iCloud backups only store health data for sixty days, so if a customer wants to keep their health data indefinitely, they need to make their own encrypted backups in iTunes. Add that to the fact that Apple encrypts at least some iCloud data with both Apple’s and the user’s keys, and a customer might have cause to worry.

Moreover, Apple should already be anonymizing stored private data (say, a user’s browsing history) so it is separate from trivial data, such as purchase history. But health data should be anonymized yet again. After all, what healthcare insurer wouldn’t want to obtain exercise, blood pressure, weight, and now blood sugar data about Apple’s customers? What might Apple’s customers pay an unscrupulous individual to keep that information confidential?

If the Apple does debut this new feature on June 5th, the company should take steps to ensure that health data never leaves the customer’s device, and if it does, that data should be stored separately in iCloud, using only the customer’s encryption key, and not Apple’s.