Mark Wyciślik-Wilson

Teardown reveals just what Apple has done to improve the MacBook Pro 2019 keyboard

MacBook Pro 2019 keyboard teardown

Apple recently launched its fastest MacBook Pro ever, featuring a processor with up to eight cores. But as well as speed, improvements have also been made to the keyboard design, and the material used in it.

Rather than waiting for Apple to reveal its secrets, iFixit decided to subject the MacBook Pro 15" Touch Bar 2019 to one of its infamous teardowns to find out for itself. Scientific analysis of the material gives an insight into its composition.

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Samsung Galaxy Fold pre-orders canceled by BestBuy

Samsung Galaxy Fold

The launch of the Samsung Galaxy Fold has been, er, problematic to say the least. After serious issues were discovered with the folding screen, the company first announced a postponement to the launch, and then told people who had placed pre-orders that their orders would be canceled.

Now BestBuy has followed suit, announcing that it too is canceling pre-orders. The retailer says that Samsung has faced "a plethora of unforeseen hiccups", and because the company has failed to provide a new release date, BestBuy feels it is only fair to its customers to cancel the orders.

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Kali Linux 2019.2 released with updated kernel and Kali Linux NetHunter

Kali Linux

Three months after the last major release, it's time for the second Kali Linux release of the year. Kali Linux 2019.2 is here, and in addition to an updated kernel, there's also an updated version of Kali Linux NetHunter, complete with support for more Android devices.

Offensive Security says that the Debian-based Kali Linux 2019.2 is primarily about tweaks and bug fixes, but there are still a number of updated tools included.

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US judge rules that Qualcomm violated antitrust laws and 'strangled competition'

Qualcomm logo on smartphone

A US federal judge has ruled that Qualcomm broke antitrust laws, illegally suppressing competition and abusing its dominant position for financial gain.

US District Judge Lucy Koh wrote that "Qualcomm's licensing practices have strangled competition", criticizing the company for threatening to cut off supplies and extracting excessive licensing fees. She ordered the company to renegotiate more reasonable deals, and said that it should be monitored for seven years to ensure compliance. The chip maker plans to appeal.

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Microsoft wants GDPR-style privacy laws for the US

EU and US flags

It is now a year since GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) rules came into effect in Europe, and on this anniversary, Microsoft is starting a conversation about bringing similar privacy regulation to the US.

The company praises the privacy framework and says that it has improved how companies handle their customers' personal data. It says that GDPR has inspired a global movement that has seen countries around the world adopt new privacy laws, and that it is time for the US to follow suit.

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Apple addresses Flexgate with MacBook Pro display backlight service program and expands keyboard repair program

Angled Apple logo

Apple has launched a new service program to address the Flexgate issue that blights numerous MacBook Pro laptops. At the same time -- and coinciding with the launch of the new 8-core MacBook Pro complete with tweaked keyboard -- the company has also expanded its keyboard repair program to address problems with its butterfly keyboards.

The display issue affects the 13-inch MacBook Pro, and owners of problematic systems find that the backlight either doesn't work at, or performs strangely. It is thought to be caused by a problem with a flexible cable in the hinge, and Apple is offering free repairs.

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Exploit developer SandboxEscaper reveals Windows 10 Task Scheduler zero-day -- and says there are more to come

Windows 10 box with bugs

Well-known security researcher and revealer of exploits SandboxEscaper has released details of a Windows 10 zero-day that affects Task Scheduler. This is far from being the first time we've heard from SandboxEscaper, and this time around the exploit could enable an attacker to gain full control of Windows 10 or Windows Server files.

The researcher has previously revealed details of numerous other security vulnerabilities in Windows, and promises: "I have four more unpatched bugs where that one came from". Furthermore, she says: "I'm donating all my work to enemies of the US".

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Linux kernel RDS flaw affects Red Hat, Ubuntu, Debian and SUSE

Linux penguin

If you're not in the habit of keeping up to date with the latest version of the Linux kernel, now might be a good time to think about doing so. Systems based on versions of the kernel older than 5.0.8 suffer from a severe flaw in the implementation of RDS over TCP.

Left unpatched, the flaw could enable an attacker to compromise a system. The National Vulnerability Database entry says: "There is a race condition leading to a use-after-free, related to net namespace cleanup".

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Google is using Gmail to track your purchases

Google logo on white wood

Google's business relies on gathering information about its users and customers, so the company take every opportunity it can to reap as much data as possible. As such, it should surprise no one to learn that Google has been using Gmail to keep a record of things you have bought -- both online and offline.

A little-known page (it's not exactly secret, but nor is it made particularly obvious) of your Google account reveals years of purchases. Google insists that the data on the Purchases page can only be seen by individuals, and is not used to tailor ads, but the clandestine, opaque nature of the tracking -- coupled with the fact that the data is tricky to delete -- is unlikely to go down well with Gmail users with concerns about privacy.

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RIP Grumpy Cat: The meme and internet phenomenon is dead

Grumpy Cat

Grumpy Cat, the feline subject of many memes, has died at the age of 7.

The internet celebrity rose to fame because of her delightfully dour demeanour and a sour face that made the online world smile. An internet celebrity for seven years, Grumpy Cat (aka Tardar Sauce) shuffled off this mortal coil this week, leaving the web a sadder place.

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Microsoft now lets you install Ubuntu Linux in Windows 10 using the Hyper-V Manager

Stacked Ubuntu logo

Microsoft has been gradually hugging Linux closer to its heart, making it ever easier to install Linux-based operating systems within Windows 10. Now Ubuntu fans have a new option when it comes to installing their favorite distro.

It is now possible to install either Ubuntu 18.04 LTS or 19.04 using Windows 10's Hyper-V Manager -- the admin tool designed to make it easy to manage virtual machines.

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Banned from social media? Feeling persecuted and censored? Report it to Donald Trump!

Black and white Trump

The White House has launched a new tool that enables people to report the fact that they have been kicked off the likes of Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.

The tool is aimed at people who have had their social media presence curtailed and "suspect political bias" is involved. Anyone who feels aggrieved is invited to "share your story with President Trump".

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Google recalls Bluetooth version of Titan Security Key after discovering hacking vulnerability

Google Titan Security Key

Google is recalling the Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) version of its Titan Security Key, and is offering free replacements to owners.

The recall comes after the company became aware of a security issue which could allow a nearby hacker to hijack the security device. Google says that the security issue only affects the Bluetooth versions of the 2FA device sold in the US.

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Trump invokes National Emergencies Act effectively banning Huawei from US

Huawei store sign

Donald Trump has declared a national emergency to fight "foreign adversaries" which he says are "increasingly creating and exploiting vulnerabilities in information and communications technology".

An executive order means that US companies are banned from buying and using foreign telecoms equipment which is deemed to be a threat to national security. Huawei and 70 affiliates have also been added to the US Commerce Department’s "Entity List" meaning that special approval would be needed to purchase such equipment, and also for companies deemed to pose a threat to buy US-made hardware.

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Here is the OnePlus 7 Pro (oh, and the OnePlus 7)

OnePlus 7 Pro camera

True to form, the launch of the latest OnePlus handsets have been preceded by numerous leaks, rumors and teasers. As such, today's launch of the OnePlus 7 and OnePlus 7 Pro contained few surprises, but the phones are now here and the launch confirms and clarifies many details.

The OnePlus 7 Pro is at the top of the range. Boasting a 90Hz QHD+ Display, Snapdragon 855 and the option of up to 12GB of RAM. Then, of course, there are the cameras. The controversial pop-up design of the selfie camera isn't going to be to everyone's liking, but the specs of the main shooters are hugely impressive. We've known that this will be the first OnePlus handset to be more directly comparable with the likes of Samsung flagships in terms of price, and this means the OnePlus 7 Pro costs between $699 and $749. For those on more restricted budget, the OnePlus 7 clocks in at slightly lower price.

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