Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook speaks during a event for students to learn to write computer code at the Apple store in the Manhattan borough of New York December 9, 2015.
Apple chief Tim Cook on Wednesday said that complying with a court order to help the FBI break into an iPhone belonging to one of the San Bernardino shooters would be “bad for America,” and set a legal precedent that would offend many Americans.
“Some things are hard, and some things are right, and some things are both – this is one of those things,” Cook told ABC News in his first interview since the court order came down last week. He added that the government was asking for “the software equivalent of cancer” and that he planned to talk to President Barack Obama directly about getting the dispute “on a better path.”
Later asked whether Apple would be prepared to fight this case all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, Cook said, “We would be prepared to take this issue all the way.”
Apple’s chief executive officer also said there should have been more dialogue with the Obama administration before the U.S. Justice Department’s decision to seek relief from a federal magistrate judge in California.
“We found out about the filing from the press, and I don’t think that’s the way the railroad should be run, and I don’t think that something so important to this country should be handled in this way,” Cook said in an interview being aired on “ABC World News Tonight.”
Apple has publicly said it intends to fight the court order and has until Friday to respond.
The iPhone in question was used by San Bernardino shooter Rizwan Farook, who along with his wife went on a shooting rampage in December that killed 14 and wounded 22.
The Justice Department wants Apple to help access encrypted information stored on Farook’s county-owned iPhone 5C by writing software that would disable its passcode protections to allow an infinite number of guesses without erasing the data on the device.
Apple has said the request amounts to asking a company to hack its own device and would undermine digital security more broadly.
“This would be bad for America,” Cook told ABC. “It would also set a precedent that I think many people in America would be offended by and when you think about those, which are knowns, compared to something that might be there, I believe we are making the right choice.”
Some major tech companies have solidly sided with Apple while others have issued more muted statements on the importance of digital security. Verizon Communications Inc Chief Executive Lowell McAdam told Reuters Wednesday his company supports “the availability of strong encryption with no backdoors.”
The government has repeatedly insisted its request in the iPhone case does not amount to “backdoor” access.
(Additional reporting by Malathi Nayak and Mari Saito in San Francisco)
Amazon joins $1 trillion club
Amazon logo. REUTERS/Pascal Rossignol
Amazon.com Inc. on Tuesday joined Apple Inc. in the $1 trillion club, becoming the second member of the group after its stock price doubled in 15 months.
If the online retailer’s share price continues at its recent pace, it will be a matter of when not if, Amazon’s market valuation eclipses that of iPhone maker Apple, which reached $1 trillion on Aug. 2.
Apple took almost 38 years as a public company to achieve the trillion dollar milestone, while Amazon got there in 21 years. While Apple’s iPhone and other devices remain popular and its revenues are growing, it is not keeping up with Amazon’s blistering sales growth.
Amazon has impressed investors by successfully diversifying its business into virtually every corner of the retail industry, altering how consumers buy products and putting major pressure on many brick-and-mortar stores. It also provides video streaming services and bought upscale supermarket Whole Foods. And its cloud computing services for companies have become a major driver of earnings and revenue. — Reuters
Turks divided over President Erdogan calls for U.S. electronics boycott
iPhone 7 smartphone | REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson
Turks expressed differing opinions on Tuesday (August 14) after President Tayyip Erdogan called on the nation to boycott electronic products from the United States, particularly iPhones, retaliating in a dispute with Washington that has helped drive the lira to record lows.
Hours after Erdogan‘s call, iPhone user Ayse Orga bought a new phone for herself at a bazaar selling electronics. Shopkeeper Umit Yilmaz voiced support for Orga.
“I have a 16-year-old daughter. Take her iPhone away from her, if you can,” Yilmaz said.
Another shopkeeper, Arif Simsek disagreed.
“We fully support this decision. We supported him with our lives on July 15 and now we will support him with our goods,” Simsek said, referring to the failed coup attempt in July 2016.
The lira has lost more than 40 percent this year and crashed to an all-time low of 7.24 to the dollar early on Monday (August 13), hit by worries over Erdogan‘s calls for lower interest rates and worsening ties with the United States.
The weakness of the Turkish currency has rippled through global markets. Its drop of as much as 18 percent on Friday (August 10) hit U.S. and European stocks as investors fretted about banks’ exposure to Turkey.
Erdogan says Turkey is the target of an economic war and has made repeated calls for Turks to sell their dollars and euros to shore up the national currency. — Reuters
Apple apologizes after outcry over slowed iPhones
FILE PHOTO: Apple CEO Tim Cook stands in front of a screen displaying the IPhone 6 during a presentation at Apple headquarters in Cupertino, California October 16, 2014. REUTERS/Robert Galbraith/File Photo
(Reuters) – Facing lawsuits and consumer outrage after it said it slowed older iPhones with flagging batteries, Apple Inc is slashing prices for battery replacements and will change its software to show users whether their phone battery is good.
“We know that some of you feel Apple has let you down,” Apple said in its posting. “We apologize.”
On Dec. 20, Apple acknowledged that iPhone software has the effect of slowing down some phones with battery problems. Apple said the problem was that aging lithium batteries delivered power unevenly, which could cause iPhones to shutdown unexpectedly to protect the delicate circuits inside.
That disclosure played on a common belief among consumers that Apple purposely slows down older phones to encourage customers to buy newer iPhone models. While no credible evidence has ever emerged that Apple engaged in such conduct, the battery disclosure struck a nerve on social media and elsewhere.
Apple on Thursday denied that it has ever done anything to intentionally shorten the life of a product.
At least eight lawsuits have been filed in California, New York and Illinois alleging that the company defrauded users by slowing devices down without warning them. The company also faces a legal complaint in France, where so-called “planned obsolesce” is against the law.
Reporting by Stephen Nellis; Editing by Andrew Hay