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Next iPhone could feature an ultra-wide lens – TechCrunch

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A new report from Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo obtained by 9to5Mac details the cameras in the next-generation iPhones. The report confirms previous rumors — the successors of the iPhone XS and XS Max will have three camera sensors on the back of the device.

In addition to the main camera and the 2x camera, Apple could add an ultra-wide 12-megapixel lens. Many Android phones already feature an ultra-wide lens, so it makes sense that Apple is giving you more flexibility by adding a third camera.

Kuo thinks Apple will use a special coating on the camera bump to hide the lenses. It’s true that pointing three cameras at someone is starting to look suspicious.

OnLeaks and Digit shared the following render (without any special coating) a few months ago:

The iPhone XR update will feature two cameras instead of one. I bet Apple will add a 2x camera.

On the front of the device, Apple could be planning a big upgrade for the selfie camera. The company could swap the existing camera sensor with 4 layers of glass with a camera sensor that has 5 layers of glass.

Apple could also be giving the camera a resolution bump, jumping from 7 megapixels to 12 megapixels. All three models should get the new selfie camera.

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Some Roku smart TVs are now showing banner ads over live TV

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Enlarge / A Roku streaming box. It seems these ads aren’t appearing on Roku’s own hardware like this device; instead, they’re appearing on TVs that license Roku’s software platform.

Some Roku smart TV owners are seeing banner ads appear over live content, according to a thread on the r/cordcutters subreddit.

A user named p3t3or posted the following message:

Welp, this is the last time I purchase or recommend a Roku. After a Sleep Number commercial, I just got a Roku ad sidebar while watching live TV. Really loved the Roku experience up until now, but this is a deal breaker.

The message was accompanied by the following photo:

An ad appears over a sports game on a Sharp-branded TV running Roku software.
Enlarge / An ad appears over a sports game on a Sharp-branded TV running Roku software.

The photo shows a Sharp TV running Roku software and displaying an ad for a bed over a live sports broadcast, plus a prompt to ‘press OK to get offer.”

These ads don’t seem to appear on Roku’s own hardware, like the Roku Ultra, Express, Streambar, or Streaming Stick. Rather, they show up on certain smart TVs running the Roku TV platform—and it might just be certain brands, like Sharp. Some owners of TCL Roku TVs commented that they had not seen the ads.

Fortunately, users in the thread reported that the feature can be disabled in privacy settings. But it’s possible that doing so may disable other Roku features.

Roku’s platform is not the only one adding ads to content. Users have complained previously about ads featured prominently on Samsung’s TVs, and while we haven’t seen reports of ads appearing over live content on LG’s webOS TVs, they do appear in other places in the TV’s software.

Further, some of these platforms collect and monetize user data, as we previously reported about Vizio TVs.

Smart TV platforms offer convenience, but it’s rare for software and services that receive ongoing free support and updates to operate without showing ads, monetizing user data, or both. The profit margins on TVs can be small outside of the high-end part of the market, and supporting software and live services over time costs money, so TV and platform makers are seeking out ways to generate recurring revenue on top of what they get from initial sales.

User complaints like these may reflect a trend to which there is no clear end.

We’ve reached out to Roku for comment and clarification about which devices serve these ads and what the effects of disabling them in settings might be.

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Google kills YouTube Originals, its original video content group

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Variety reports that Google’s original video content group, YouTube Originals, is dead. The YouTube division was founded six years ago to make exclusive, original content for the pay-per-month YouTube Premium service. Now the group is being shuttered, and YouTube’s global head of original content, Susanne Daniels, is leaving the company in March.

Just after the news broke, YouTube Chief Business Officer Robert Kyncl posted a statement on Twitter:

YouTube is the web’s de facto video site, but Google still tends to chase any hot new web video trend that pops up. YouTube Shorts is a clone of TikTok. YouTube Gaming is a clone of Twitch. YouTube Stores were meant as an answer to Snapchat. YouTube Originals was a swipe at Netflix, which, back in 2016, was turning heads with award-winning shows like House of Cards and Orange Is the New Black. Back then, the $12-per-month YouTube Premium started life as “YouTube Red,” and its offerings were called YouTube Red Originals.

At first, YouTube took a decidedly YouTube spin on original content and threw big budgets at the platform’s star content creators, resulting in shows like Scare PewDiePie, created by the executive producers of The Walking Dead. YouTube Originals eventually pivoted into more Hollywood-style content and saw some success in 2018 with The Karate Kid sequel Cobra Kai.

We’ve seen this story about a million times covering products by YouTube’s parent company, Google: after a new initiative does not achieve immediate, incredible success, Google starts scaling back its plans after about two years. By the end of 2018, reports surfaced that YouTube was scaling back its scripted video plans, and that YouTube Originals would go ad-supported, just like normal YouTube video. YouTube Originals’ more successful projects moved on to other video services, with Netflix picking up Cobra Kai for seasons 3 and 4.

Today, YouTube Premium is still around for $12 a month. The main perks are ad-free YouTube and YouTube Music, while the mobile app gets background playback and the ability to download content for offline use.

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Microsoft fixes Patch Tuesday bug that broke VPN in Windows 10 and 11

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Aurich Lawson

Microsoft’s monthly Patch Tuesday updates for Windows are generally meant to fix problems, but that isn’t how it always goes. January’s updates, released last week, caused a handful of problems for businesses in particular. The most serious, especially for people still dealing with pandemic-driven remote-work setups, was a bug that broke certain kinds of VPN connections. Microsoft has provided fixes for this and other issues as of today, a few days after acknowledging the problem on its Known Issues page.

According to Microsoft’s documentation and reporting from Bleeping Computer, the VPN connection issues affected “IPSEC connections which contain a Vendor ID,” as well as L2TP and IPSEC IKE VPN connections in Windows 10, Windows 11, and Windows Server versions 2022, 20H2, 2019, and 2016. Windows’ built-in VPN client seems to be the most commonly affected, but third-party VPN clients using these kinds of connections could also run into the error.

The latest round of Patch Tuesday updates also caused some problems for Windows Server, including unexpected reboots for domain controllers and failed boots for Hyper-V virtual machines. These problems have all been resolved by other out-of-band patches, though not before causing problems for beleaguered IT admins.

Microsoft has also resolved a problem that caused ReFS-formatted drives to not show up at all or to show up as raw, unformatted disks. Microsoft has also fixed this problem, though not before blaming the problem on the “unsupported” use of ReFS on removable drives. The ReFS filesystem was supported in the consumer versions of Windows for a few years, though Microsoft removed the ability to create ReFS drives a few years ago, restricting it to servers and the enterprise editions of Windows.

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