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Stronger Encryption is The Best Way to Prevent Cyber Attacks, say Apple

Apple and the US Federal Bureau of Investigation engaged in a showdown in 2016 over the iPhone used by an assailant in the San Bernardino terror attack

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Apple
Top apps using Siri Shortcuts to make daily tasks easier: Apple. Pixabay

Countering a common argument that strong encryption may come in the way of well-meaning investigation of criminal activities, Apple has stressed that stronger — not weaker — encryption is the best way to protect against threats of cyber attacks and terrorism.

In a letter to the Australian government, the Cupertino, California-headquartered tech giant asserted that encryption was in fact a benefit and public good, The Verge reported on Friday.

Apple was specifically responding to a bill designed to five government easy access to the devices and data of criminals during investigations.

The tech giant said it takes technology’s role in protecting national security and citizens’s lives extremely seriously.

“Every day, over a trillion transactions occur safely over the internet as a result of encrypted communications,” Apple said in its letter while responding to the Australian Parliament’s Assistance and Access Bill.

Apple
An Apple store in Woodbridge, Virginia. (VOA)

“Criminals and terrorists who want to infiltrate systems and disrupt sensitive networks may start their attacks by accessing just one person’s smartphone. In the face of these threats, this is no time to weaken encryption.”

While Apple was not outright condemning the bill, it, however, attempted to make the case that “the draft legislation remains dangerously ambiguous with respect to encryption and security” The Verge report added.

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Apple and the US Federal Bureau of Investigation engaged in a showdown in 2016 over the iPhone used by an assailant in the San Bernardino terror attack.

The FBI had to seek third-party help after Apple refused to assist the investigating agency unlock the phone. (IANS)

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Global Premium Smartphone Market Collapses 8% in Q1 2019 as Apple Shipments Fall

Our estimates suggest that almost half of the decline in the global premium segment in Q1 2019 was due to the sluggish Chinese market

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Apple, Campus, China
A customer is entering the Apple store in Fairfax, Virginia. VOA

The global premium smartphone market has collapsed 8 per cent in the first quarter (Q1) of 2019 as Apple shipments plummeted 20 per cent, a report by Counterpoint Research said on Wednesday.

According to Counterpoint Research’s ‘Market Monitor Service’ report, during the quarter, Samsung ended up with one-fourth of the global premium segment – which is the company’s highest ever share over the past year.

This was also the first time that Samsung launched three devices instead of the usual two in its S series, thus covering wider price points.

China’s technology giant Huawei also captured a double-digit share in the highly-concentrated premium market. Impeccable camera quality, Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology and superior build quality of its flagship mate and P series drove the growth for Huawei during the quarter.

“The trend of users holding onto their iPhones for longer has affected Apple’s shipments. The replacement cycle for iPhones has grown to over three years, on an average, from two years. On the other hand, substantial design changes in the Galaxy S10 series and the better value proposition it offers compared to high-end iPhones helped Samsung close the gap to Apple,” Varun Mishra, Research Analyst, Counterpoint Research said in a statement.

China, Technology, US
People try out Huawei smartphone models on display at an electronic store in Beijing, China, May 20, 2019. VOA

Huawei even surpassed Apple to become the top player in the premium smartphone market in China – a market where the iPhone maker has been struggling.

“The sluggishness of the Chinese market was the other key reason for the decline in the global premium segment,” Mishra added.

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Our estimates suggest that almost half of the decline in the global premium segment in Q1 2019 was due to the sluggish Chinese market.

“However, we expect that as 5G begins to commercialize in the future, the premium segment will grow. In 2019 and 2020, all the 5G devices are expected to launch in the premium segment,” noted Mishra. (IANS)