How Apple accidentally leaked its secrets itself
Apple takes extreme precautions to prevent its employees and suppliers from revealing its secrets, trying to make its product launches as shock-and-awe as possible. But it hardly ever works. Details about new iPhones, iPads and other gadgets regularly leak.
This year, the Apple news site 9to5Mac released images of the new iPhones and Apple Watch on Aug. 30. But it didn’t get them from a disgruntled employee or a supplier with porous security policies. Instead, it was a self-inflicted wound by Apple.
After Apple posted a webpage last month to tease today’s event, Guilherme Rambo, a 9to5Mac reporter based in Brazil, began playing around with the page’s web address, said Zac Hall, 9to5Mac’s lead editor. Mr. Rambo added keywords and other details from the web address of last year’s event-recap page, and eventually found images of Apple’s new iPhones, Mr. Hall said.
In effect, Apple spent months trying to stop its employees and suppliers from leaking details about its products — but then made the images of those products publicly available on the web itself. To find the images, you just had to guess the exact URL. After Mr. Rambo found the iPhone images, Mr. Hall said the rest of the staff kept trying new URLs until they found pictures of the new Apple Watch, too.
Ironically, 9to5Mac tracked down the images a few hours after the site’s team of 10 reporters found out Apple had not invited them to Wednesday’s event. “That kind of felt nice,” Mr. Hall said. Apple declined to comment.
Hours before the event on Wednesday, another tech blog, allthings.how, caught more details from the underlying computer code on Apple’s website, including the possible colors and names of the new iPhones.
— Jack Nicas
With bigger screens, expect higher prices
Over the past several years, phone makers have gradually increased the sizes of their smartphone screens. And as the devices get larger, their prices climb.
You can expect some of the new iPhones to have higher starting prices than past models. The new entry-level iPhone may start at $749, with the updated 5.8-inch iPhone X coming in at around $949 and $1,049 for the giant 6.5-inch-screen model, analysts estimated. In contrast, just a few years ago Apple’s iPhones started at $649 for the smaller model and $749 for the larger one.
So now is a good time to kick a bad habit. Stop hoarding your old cellphones — sell or trade them in to save money on your next phone.
According to studies, many people hold on to their old phones after buying a new one, and most used electronics ultimately end up in a garbage bin. Smartphones have very good resale value, so you could shave hundreds of dollars off your next phone upgrade if you sell your old one to a reseller or another consumer.
— Brian X. Chen