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News bites – the stories you may have missed (6 May 2022)

Plenty of Apple, iPhone, and iPad news gets released every single day – but we know you’re busy, so we’ve got your back. Here, we’ve picked out some of the most important stories from the past week or so and summarized them for easy digestion. You’re welcome.

Let’s take a quickfire look at some of the most interesting recent headlines of late. As ever, click through to read the full stories if you want to know more!

Elon Musk criticises App Store charges

As if he didn’t have enough on his plate trying to scratch together the funds to buy Twitter, Elon Musk has been picking another fight with Apple. This time around he took to Twitter to criticize Apple’s 30% App Store developer cut. “Apple’s store is like having a 30% tax on the Internet. Definitely not ok”, he said, before claiming that the charge was “Literally 10 times higher than it should be”. The Tesla CEO certainly likes to stir things up, doesn’t he?

We don’t entirely disagree – Apple could certainly afford to lower its cut, and perhaps it should. But it’s also worth noting that the majority of developers only pay 15%, not 30%. And this isn’t just an Apple thing: Google’s Play Store charges very similar rates to developers, and Facebook/Meta is planning a huge cut of 47.5% for its upcoming metaverse store.

iPad Air 2 and iPad Mini 2 enter ‘vintage’ status

And now, a moment’s pause for two tablet greats. While the iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 2 might not be officially dead, they were pretty much put on Apple’s life support machine with the news that they have now been granted ‘vintage’ status. Vintage Apple products haven’t been on sale for more than 5 years, but for less than 7 years. You’ll need to get any necessary repair work done on these venerable tablets before that 7-year mark ticks over and the products are labeled ‘obsolete’, which means the company won’t accept them for repair any longer.

Apple starts selling refurbished Apple Watch 7

Apple has begun selling refurbished models of its Apple Watch 7. This is a big deal, as the Apple Watch 7 is the company’s current top smartwatch model, having only been launched in September 2021. It’s potentially a great way to save money on the best smartwatch on the market, with prices starting from $339. That’s a healthy $60 saving for an as-good-as-new product with a one-year guarantee, if you can find the right model.

Apple tussles with developers over ‘outdated’ apps

It’s been a fractious few weeks between Apple and third-party App Store developers. It started with the company threatening to remove apps that hadn’t been updated in some time, with a scant 30-day notice period. This led to considerable objections from the development community, many of whom felt it was unreasonable to treat a properly finished app or game as outdated. This prompted a clarifying update from Apple extending the grace period to 90 days, and explaining that the number of downloads an app had received was also a major factor.

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