Technology

What's Up With Apple: Production Slowdowns in China, TV+ Subscribers and More

Among the reasons given last week for the Chinese government’s decision to ban cryptocurrencies and crypto mining in the country was to reduce electricity demand and, coincidently, carbon emissions. Similar restrictions have now hit some Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) and Tesla suppliers.

Reuters reported Monday morning that several suppliers for both companies have been ordered to stop production due both to rising emissions and a shortage of coal to generate more electricity. The coal shortage also has driven coal prices to record highs in China.

According to the report, at least 15 Chinese companies have had to cut their power usage and more than 30 companies listed in Taiwan have had to stop work. Unimicron Technology, a Taiwan-based supplier of printed circuit boards, closed Sunday and will remain closed until midnight on September 30. Foxconn subsidiary Eson has suspended production until Friday.

Electricity already is being rationed during peak hours in northeastern China, and residents told Reuters that the outages are beginning earlier and lasting longer. The country’s state grid has promised to ensure basic supply to keep homes warm as temperatures fall in the region.

Neither Apple nor Tesla has commented on the power cuts.

Apple reportedly has told the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees that it has fewer than 20 million subscribers to its Apple TV+ streaming service as of July 1. The union represents TV and movie workers who perform jobs like operating cameras and building sets. Under the union contract, a streaming production created for a company like Apple with fewer than 20 million subscribers can offer a lower pay rate than larger companies.

CNBC reported that the revelation came as part of new contract negotiations between the union and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, of which Apple is a member.

A security researcher has released a public notice of three zero-day vulnerabilities in Apple’s iOS mobile operating system after failing to receive credit for discovering the bugs as promised by Apple’s Security Bounty program.

All three of the new vulnerabilities allow bad actors to use owner-installed apps to “access data that those apps should not have or have not been granted access to.” One, called Gamed zero-day, exposes Apple ID email and full name plus authentication tokens and access to certain databases. Ars Technica comments:

[T]hat access can be used to gain a pretty complete picture of the user’s entire set of interactions with others on the iOS device—who is in their contact list, who they’ve contacted (using both Apple and third-party applications) and when, and in some cases even file attachments to individual messages.