Welcome to “The Week in Tech,” where we recap some of the most interesting technology and mobile stories from the past week.
This week we highlight bending iPhones, a bad iOS 8 update, Blackberry’s new oddly-shaped phone, and the security flaw that can topple the internet.
iPhone 6 gets bent; Apple pulls iOS 8 update
After selling over 10 million iPhone 6’s last week, Apple ran into a rough patch this week.
First, some iPhone 6 owners reported that the device bends if left in a front pants pocket while the owner is seated for a long time. Silly skinny jeans. Apple reported that they only received nine complaints, but the story spread like wildfire in the Twitterverse.
Then the iOS 8 update Apple delivered on Wednesday was wrought with problems, so much so that the company retracted it. The update apparently disabled cell phone service and caused issues with the Touch ID fingerprint technology for many iPhone owners. The company then released another update yesterday to fix the problems.
Blackberry launches a new, oddly shaped phone
It’s not often that we write about Blackberry on this blog, because, well, there’s just not that much to write about. Not this week!
The company officially announced the launch of the Passport, a new smartphone with a physical keyboard and a perfectly square touchscreen, which is kind of weird if you think about it. The device will cost $599 unlocked and $250 with contract, and will be available soon in the U.S. on AT&T.
Blackberry is clearly targeting the enterprise with the Passport, as they’ve optimized the phone for business use cases like editing spreadsheets and documents. And with all other smartphone makers eschewing physical keyboards, Blackberry hopes to differentiate by doing the exact opposite.
The bug that can take down the internet
A bug found in Bash, a widely used command interpreter for software programming, poses a security risk that some experts say may be able to take down the internet.
While that sounds a bit extravagant, Bash is built into 70 percent of the machines that connect to the internet, including Mac computers and Android smartphones, so it can potentially impact hundreds of millions of devices. It also appears that the bug has been present in enterprise Linux software for a very long time, which puts businesses at risk.
This bug, called Shellshock, draws comparisons to the Heartbleed flaw that impacted the security of users’ passwords on the bulk of websites. While security experts are working on patching the bug, the broad use of Bash will likely cause this problem to stick around for years to come.
What do you think of these stories? Have you read other interesting mobile and technology stories this week that are worth mentioning? Feel free to add your thoughts to the comments.