The Morning After: Brazil wants in-box chargers with new iPhones

Mat Smith, Richard Lawler and Engadget
·4-min read

Getting rid of smartphone excess is hard. Just ask Apple. When it launched the iPhone 12 series without chargers or headphones in the box, the company had to immediately accommodate French laws by including Earpods with the four new smartphones. French law demands that smartphones are bundled with a hands-free kit or headset to protect children aged 14 and younger from electromagnetic radiation, with the country wary about the health effects of long-term radiation exposure from smartphones.

The Morning After
The Morning After

A little later, here’s Brazil. Consumer protection agency Procon-SP has fined Apple nearly R$10.55 million (about $1.92 million) for removing the power adapter from its newest phones, including later production runs of older iPhones. Procon-SP told Apple about the alleged violation in December, with the company reiterating its environmental angle, arguing that it would reduce CO2 emissions and rare earth mining, as well as the fact that many customers already had spare chargers. (Don’t forget that the in-box cable, with its USB-C connector, would need a new charger to work.)

The agency wasn’t satisfied with that answer, issuing a fine that is incredibly tiny given the size of Apple. The bigger issue now is how Apple will accommodate Brazil’s demands to ensure it can keep selling iPhones there. 

-Mat Smith

Coinbase fined $6.5 million over cryptocurrency trading claims

One of the biggest crypto exchanges allegedly misled buyers about trading volumes.

The Morning After
The Morning After

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission has fined Coinbase $6.5 million for allegedly providing misleading info about its trading volumes. The Coinbase Pro exchange ran two programs that sometimes traded Bitcoin and Litecoin with each other between 2015 and 2018, and included those trades in data it shared with outside services, suggesting more trading volume than there was.

Coinbase is one of the most well-established cryptocurrency exchanges, simplifying the process of converting established currencies into Bitcoin and the rest. CFTC Commissioner Dawn Stump stressed that Coinbase's infractions were firmly in the past. The activity took place "several years ago," and the employee responsible left years before the fine. The exchange hadn't repeated this behavior since, Stump added. Continue reading.

Xbox Series X and S owners start testing Dolby Vision HDR for gaming

Only a handful of games are known to support Dolby so far.

Players using the latest Xbox Insider Alpha ring release have noticed that it enables Dolby Vision for Series X and Series S titles. Well, a few of them, anyway. It's been spotted working on Borderlands 3, Gears 5 and Halo: Master Chief Collection, adding enhanced HDR through Dolby rather than the standard HDR10 — the type used by Xbox’s rival, PlayStation. Continue reading.

Donald Trump is planning his very own social network

It’s coming in 'two to three months'.

The Morning After
The Morning After

According to Deadline, Trump aide Jason Miller told Fox News that the former president is planning to launch his own social media service in "two to three months." Miller wasn't specific about what the platform would entail, but insisted it would "redefine the game"

Trump may have undermined his own efforts, if he does go through with the launch. The former leader pushed for limitations on the Communications Decency Act's Section 230 (which shields internet companies from liability for user content) and a variant on that has persisted since the Democrats took control of the presidency and both sides of Congress. A limited Section 230 might let victims of libel or harassment sue a social network — even if its owner is a former president. Continue reading.

Opera's iOS app gets a cleaner look and shorter name

The app's no longer called Opera Touch.

Opera is marking the third anniversary of its current iOS browser by renaming it. Goodbye Opera Touch, hello just plain Opera. The app also has a revamped look, with a red color scheme instead of purple. Opera says its iOS user base increased by over 65 percent in the 12 months to February, which has been partially credited to Apple's decision to let users change their default browser in iOS 14. The updated app is available now. Continue reading.

But wait, there’s more...

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