Archive for category Apple Accessories

Anyone with a Smart Cover Can Break into Your iPad 2

In a pretty sizable and scary (and weird!) security bug, Apple’s Smart Cover can be used to unlock any iPad 2, even if there’s a passcode on it. Here’s how it works. And here’s how to fix it.

We’ve confirmed the security flaw with our own Smart Covers and iPad 2s running iOS 5 and it’s just like the video above—the bug easily exposes your iPad 2 to unwanted eyes. And though you have to jump through a few hoops to get there, it works like this:

• Lock a passcode enabled iPad 2
• Hold down power button until it reaches the shutoff slider screen
• Close Smart Cover
• Open Smart Cover
• Click cancel

I don’t know how anyone would’ve figured that out but it definitely works. Going through those steps exposes an iPad 2’s entire home screen and apps (you can delete them but can’t open any apps) and even Spotlight previews. Perhaps more damning is that if you have an app open before you lock it (like Mail or Messages), the user who broke into your iPad 2 will have full access to that app (and can see and send messages, etc.). The smart cover break in is limited, yes, but could be used maliciously to peep e-mails that weren’t supposed to be peeped.

The only way to fix this bug is to disable Smart Cover unlocking in the General settings menu. Annoying for Smart Cover owners but a workable stopgap solution until Apple fixes the bug.

Although it only mentioned smart cover, what’s causing the issue is with the magnet, so if you purchased any iPad cases with magnetic in it, such as the one below, wait to upgrade your iPad 2 to iOS 5 until Apple the fix the issue.

http://www.amazon.com/JustCase-SimpleSmart-Ultra-Polyurethane-Folio/dp/B005NJBKB6

(from Gizmodo)

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How to Choose Cases for iPhone 4s and iPhone 4

(10/17/2011 Update: My iPhone 4s is just delivered. Since a lot of people questioned, I want to tell you that I tried the two cases with the iPhone 4s and it fits perfectly. I don’t have time to write a blog about it, so I’m going to use the the photos from JustCase)

While the world is still waiting for the iPhone 4s to be available, which takes at least 5 more days. Gadget lovers who have pre-ordered the iPhone 4s and who will try to wait in line at Apple Stores on 10/14 morning have no better ways of killing time than shopping online for the available iPhone 4s accessories. The most popular accessories for iPhone 4s, is of course an iPhone case.

Both iPhone 4 and iPhone 4s have the same dimension of 115.2 x 58.6 x 9.3 mm.  They differ in terms of weight as the new iPhone 4S is heavier at 140g while the iPhone 4 is lighter at 137g. So, can we use the iPhone 4 cases for 4s? If you search the Internet, there are already somany iPhone 4s cases out there. Will they really work for all the iPhone 4s?

What I would like to tell you that: it is not an accurate statement to say iPhone 4 and iPhone 4s are the same. Sometimes they are not. The reason I say this is because in US market, there are two kinds of iPhone 4s. There are GSM iPhone 4 which we can call the AT&T iPhone 4, since it’s used by AT&T users, and the CDMA iPhone 4 which we can call the Verizon iPhone 4. iPhone 4s is the same as Verizon one, but not the AT&T phone.

The major difference between AT&T phone and Verizon phone, or iPhone 4 and 4s, that may decide is a case is suitable is the location of the mute button and volume keys. In the following picture. The upper one is a iPhone 4s (Verizon phone) and the lower one is an iPhone 4 (AT&T phone). As you can see, the mute key is about 0.12 inch higher and the volume keys are 0.06 inch lower.

Therefore when you choose cases, especially those “barely there” snap on cases, that tries to fit the phone as much as possible, you need to make sure they won’t block any of your keys and buttons.

If you read my previous blog Free Updgrade to iPhone 4s from iPhone 4, you will know that I recently bought two cases on Amazon. This is a new brand, and you should be able to find them on Amazon by searching “JustCase”. I bought them because they proclaim these two cases work for iPhone 4 and 4s for AT&T, Verizon and Sprint.


(Update: I got quite a few people asking me where I bought these cases. Even though I have said search JustCase on Amazon, I guess people like links today, so here we go:

JustCase Metallica: http://www.amazon.com/JustCase-Metallica-Verizon-Brushed-Aluminum/dp/B005LT6T3M

JustCase Slim: http://www.amazon.com/JustCase-iPhone-Sprint-Verizon-Barely/dp/B005LA0S10

)

Both cases works for iPhone 4 and iPhone 4s. First of all, I used an iPhone App called Ruler to measure the case openings.


I only have AT&T phones, so I can not show you how it looks on Verizon phones, but I use the specifications of the button location to simulate a photo, and from the phone, both phones should fit perfectly in the Metallica case.

The red case is for my wife. From the following picture, you should see it’s having an opening big enough for both phones. It doesn’t have a connection on top of the keys or connection between the keys, but it makes it much easier to take off the case, which is necessary for my wife, who’s got about 8 or 9 iPhone cases, and she changes cases to match her clothes, and sometimes her mood (which I still don’t understand).

Actually there is something else that is different between iPhone 4 and iPhone 4s. It’s on the top of the phone, the 4s has an extra antenna, and the speaker hole is slightly shifted to the right if you are facing the phone.

Therefore, if you are buying those bumper cases, which wraps around the sides of the iPhones, you need to make sure the hole is big enough for the speaker connector. Personally I like snap on cases, and for those cases, they usually keep the top and bottom wide open, so you can easily rip it open.

As for the back cover, one thing you need to pay attention to is the camera opening. A lot of the cases do a pear shape opening that looks really nice. If you just look at it, neither the camera, the bigger circle, nor the flash, the smaller circle are covered. However, if you take a photo with flash light, the flash is so strong and it will reflect on the edge of the opening and add the color of the case to your photo, which may be an effect you wanted on the last night of October.

It says the flash for iPhone 4s is much stronger than iPhone 4, therefore, when I buy cases, make sure it has a big hold for the camera. Especially if you like bright color cases.

Some cases has an opening for the apple logo, some doesn’t. Personally I like to show the logo, but I’m fine with the Metallica case. I like the brushed aluminum feel, and an opening will probably interrupt the flow of the cool brushes.

As for the bottom of the iPhone, just make sure it won’t cover up the speakers, but the location of the speakers are the same for iPhone 4 and iPhone 4s.

The phone speakers are really dirty. Yeah, I know. It’s about time for the new guy with an S.

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Free Updgrade to iPhone 4s from iPhone 4

Well, I’m not giving you any tips or advices. It’s just my own story:

My wife and I were both AT&T iPhone 4 users, and we have a family plan started last August. I didn’t think we can get a free upgrade and probably will have to pay something like $400 per phone and $200 each for breaking the contract.

Yesterday, it seems everyone around me was talking about pre-ordering iPhones 4s, and I couldn’t resist to go to AT&T website and check it out. I put my phone number in, and I was qualified!! Although I have to pay $449 and $18 activation fee. It is a lot of money for me, but I wanted it so bad at that moment, and also because I wanted to do something to memorize Steve Jobs, the most innovative entrepreneur on earth, who has inspired me for so many years, I clicked the submit button.

Then I realized it might be a little issue to explain this to my wife, who is already mad at me many times for getting the same gadgets of newer versions, so I decided to buy another one for her. That way, she will get madder, but then I can cancel one to make her less upset, and we will still have one iPhone 4s in my house. She won’t even know the difference between iPhone 4 and 4s, so you know who will be using it.

I put her number in, and wow, wOW, WOW, she’s qualified for an update for only $199! I guess it’s because her phone is the main phone for the plan. That’s unbelievable! What a deal! I don’t think that ever happened on any of the old releases. I know people are selling old iPhone 4s on craigslist or ebay between $300-$350 and if I can sell my two old phones for $650, the issue is resolved!

I listed my two phones on craigslist and go so many responses, and within an hour, I got the offer of $650, and a promise to wait until next Saturday to pick up my old phones after I got my new iPhone 4s.

That’s not even end of it!

I told my friend about it, and he says, why don’t you call AT&T to do the upgrade. They will waive the $18 for you! But you can still call them before the order is fulfilled.

I called AT&T but their line is so busy yesterday. I guess too many people are calling them, so I will try again later, but with the extra $18, I bought two new nice iPhone 4 and 4s compatible cases from JustCase on Amazon.

http://www.amazon.com/JustCase-Metallica-Verizon-Brushed-Aluminum/dp/B005LT6T3M

Two new iPhone 4s and two new phone cases for nothing. I’m a happy man! 

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