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Sunday, October 13, 2013

iOS 7 has five issues, but here's how to fix them

Apple's shiny new iOS 7 mobile operating system was released September 18 to mostly positive reviews, but it has five issues, nevertheless. And in this article we will show you how to address them.

It was the biggest change to iOS since it was introduced in 2007, overhauled to add a slate of new features and a more streamlined, abstract look.

But to be fair to Apple, it's not totally unusual for new operating systems to have some glitches here and there in their earliest days.

Nobody's talking about anything cataclysmic this time, like the Apple Maps fiasco on iOS 6 that led CEO Tim Cook to issue a rare apology -- and which some say led to the ouster of Apple senior vice president Scott Forstall.

But just a couple of weeks into its existence, iOS 7 has prompted a handful of complaints from some users. Here are five of the most frequently heard, along with tips for how to fix, or at least bypass them.

iMessage failing
Apple says it's aware of an issue that's causing texts sent through its iMessage app not to go through for some users. On various Apple-oriented message boards, iOS 7 users were complaining that they'd send a message which appeared to work fine, only to later see a red exclamation point that means it wasn't actually sent.

"We are aware of a problem that affects a fraction of a percent of our iMessage users, and we will have a fix available in an upcoming software update," Apple said in a statement e-mailed to media outlets. "In the meantime, we encourage any users having issues to reference our troubleshooting documents or contact AppleCare to help resolve their issue. We apologize for any inconvenience this causes impacted users."

Until the update rolls out, some users say they've been able to get rid of the issue by turning their phone off and back on.

Animation flu
Some folks say they're already sick of iOS 7. Phone and iPad users, or at least a few of them, say they're getting symptoms similar to motion sickness while looking at iOS 7 animations. On the new system, images zoom in and out when users switch between apps. As TIME explains, the brain gets unsettled when the eyes try to focus on images that don't match up -- for example, when you're on a rocking ship or moving car and trying to read a stationary item, like a book.

To clear that issue, iOS 7 users can go to "Settings," then "General" and then "Accessibility." Click on "Reduce Motion" to make the zooming go away.

Battery drain
This one has been mostly reported by users of older phones like the iPhone 4S. Simply, they say iOS 7 seems to drain their batteries faster than iOS 6 did. One factor may be that iOS 7 expands the ability to run apps in the background while focusing on another task.

To repair that problem, go to "Settings" and "General," but then choose "Background App Refresh." From there, you can choose which apps you'll allow to run in the background and which you won't.

There are also general battery-saving steps, like dimming your screen and making sure things like GPS and Bluetooth are switched off if you're not using them.

Certain apps log you out

This one might take care of itself over time. When Apple updates its operating system, apps that rely on parts of it (like Camera) must update as well. Until they do, they sometimes kick users out. On Apple message boards, users were mentioning apps like Snapchat and Mailbox as frequent offenders.

Some developers may have already tweaked their products, and other fixes are probably on the way. But if you're still having problems, you can go to "Settings," "General" and "Background App Refresh" again. Turn off any apps you're having problems with.

Lock screen bypass
This one has already been addressed in an iOS 7 update from Apple just days after the new operating system rolled out. For the first few days, iPhones and iPads apparently were vulnerable in one particular instance. If users were running the Camera app and had Control Center activated on their Lock screens, there were a few steps someone could take to unlock their phones.

But the iOS 7.0.2 update, released on September 26, "fixes bugs that could allow someone to bypass the Lock screen passcode," according to Apple.

Are you encountering issues with iOS 7? If so, have you found a way to fix them? Let us know bywriting to us.
T-Mobile's new strategy appears to be getting a little help from sales of Apple devices. According to recent numbers from Kantar Worldpanel, T-Mobile grew to 13.2 percent of smartphone sales in the U.S. market in the 3 month period ending August 2013, marking its highest share of sales over the past year.

The market share represents growth of 1.1 percent, reversing an on-going trend of a year-on-year decline. The iPhone 5 remained the top-selling smartphone at T-Mobile, with 17.1 percent of sales.

Kantar's global strategic insight director, Dominic Sunnebo said that when iOS first debuted on T-Mobile in mid-April, the majority of sales came from consumers upgrading from a featurephone to their first smartphone.

"But, looking at those who purchased an iPhone in the August period, 56 percent of those consumers came from another smartphone, including 38.5 percent from an Android device,” Sunnebo said in a statement.

The Kantar numbers shows Android retaining its lead for the period, with a 55.1 percent share of the market. Apple's iOS follows with a 39.3 percent share, an increase of 5.4 percent versus the same period a year ago.
Overall, little movement is seen among the other operating systems in the market, at least for now anyway. Windows saw about a 2.9 percent increase in sales in the August period, while BlackBerry was down to just 1.7 percent of sales.

And Verizon sold the most smarpthones, with a 37.1 percent market share of all sales, which amounted to growth of 6.9 percent. For its part, AT&T maintained a second position at 21.7 percent, and Sprint took home third with a 14.6 percent share of smartphone sales.

In other mobile news

A British police investigation into the massive DDoS attack against internet spam killer Spamhaus has led to the arrest of a 16-year-old London schoolboy who is allegedly part of an international group of cyber criminals and activists.

"The teenager was found with his computer systems open and logged on to various virtual systems and forums," says the police document shown to the London Evening Standard.

"The suspect has a significant amount of money flowing through his bank account. Financial investigators are in the process of recuperating all that cash."

The schoolboy was arrested in April at the same time as a 35 year-old Dutchman, thought to be Sven Kamphuis, the owner of hosting firm Cyberbunker, as part of an investigation into the Spamhaus attack by British police dubbed Operation Rashlike.

The arrest was kept completely secret, and the boy has been released on bail pending a trial date later in the year.

British police documents state that the Spamhaus attack in March was the "largest DDoS attack ever seen," and claims that the performance of the London Internet Exchange was also hard hit.

The DDoS attack caused worldwide disruption of the functionality of the internet, it states. On March 18, Spamhaus and its networking partner CloudFlare started getting attacked at around 90 Gbps.

When that failed to take the site offline, the attackers went upstream to ISPs and internet exchanges in Amsterdam and London, and by March 22nd, over 300 Gbps was hitting the Spamhaus servers.

But despite all the activity, the attack didn't seriously interrupt the flow of internet data. The London Internet Exchange reported "minor amount of collateral congestion in a small portion of our network," and Spamhaus' services weren't seriously disrupted.

"Only the website and our email server were affected," said Steve Linford, chief executive for Spamhaus. "All Spamhaus DNSBL [DNS Block List] services continued to run unaffected throughout the attack. In fact, Spamhaus DNSBLs have never once been down since we started them in 2001."

Spamhaus is more targeted than most because of the work it does. The organization compiles lists of ISPs, domains, and email servers that are known spammers so that service providers can block off huge chunks of incoming emails offering fake Viagra tablets, suspicious dating sites, viruses and malware.

In 2011, Spamhaus temporarily blacklisted Dutch hosting firm Cyberbunker, which allows customers to use its services for absolutely anything "except child porn and anything related to terrorism."

For its part, Cyberbunker denied responsibility and claimed that Spamhaus was acting as an internet vigilante, although it appears that Cyberlocker's owner may have taken a more direct approach against the watchdog.

Just how a 16-year-old schoolboy got mixed up in all this still remains to be seen. Shifting large amounts of cash through a teenager's bank account isn't the smartest move in the criminal playbook, but it wouldn't be the first time such basic mistakes have led to arrests.

In other internet security news

All roaming rate charges paid by mobile phone users when they're travelling inside Canada and the United States will soon get a lot more scrutiny by the CRTC, which is strongly considering possible stiff regulations as a result of several consumer complaints from Canadians.

About than thirty-six telecom companies and wireless carriers had to submit information on the terms and conditions of their roaming rates to the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) by Friday of this week.

The CRTC had set the deadline after hearing consumers' concerns that the cost of roaming on another carrier's network could be "unreasonable."

"A decision on whether there is a need to intervene will be made once the CRTC has reviewed the information it has asked the wireless companies to provide," the CRTC's Chris Seidl said in an emailed statement.

The additional information will also help it determine the options available to consumers and the competitiveness of Canada's wireless industry, said Seidl, executive director of telecommunications at the CRTC.

Telecom analyst Eamon Hoey said he expects the CRTC to regulate roaming rates, adding it's the beginning of more regulation for the wireless industry.

"Canadian consumers are more than just a bit annoyed at the rates that they're paying now, not only for basic cell phone service, but also for roaming charges, for additional charges, for so-called contracts, you name it-- the list goes on and on," said Hoey, of Hoey Associates Management Consultants in Toronto.

Hoey also said that Bell, Telus and Rogers didn't do themselves any favors with consumers or the federal government with their publicity blitz against big U.S. carrier Verizon, which had expressed some interest in Canada's wireless market but decided against coming north earlier this month.

Rates aren't low enough, he said, adding that Canada's wireless carriers "pay in pennies per minute" to foreign carriers such as Verizon, AT&T and U.K.-based Vodafone for their roaming agreements.

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