Briefly: Orange UK subsidizing iPad, iPhone 4 Torx screws, Apple Store robbed

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014
Wireless operator Orange UK announced that it will soon offer a discounted iPad with a data service plan, while reports indicate that Apple has begun changing the screws on the iPhone 4 to the less user-accessible Torx screw. Finally, burglars broke into an Apple Store in Pittsburgh, Penn., making off with over $10,000 in merchandise.



Orange UK



In a press release issued Monday, Orange UK revealed that it will offer new purchase options for the iPad, including "more affordable prices" on iPad 3G models when purchased with a data service plan. The options will be available in "the coming months," although the company did not give specific details on pricing.



Currently, Orange UK offers monthly 3G plans for the iPad: 3GB of data and unlimited browsing at Wi-Fi hotspots for £15 ($23.92), or 10GB of data and unlimited Wi-Fi hotspot access for £25 ($39.86).



iPhone 4



According to various reports, iPhone 4s are now shipping with 5-point torx screws, making the device harder for users to take apart. Units brought to Apple Stores for service are also being retro-fitted with the new screws. Previously, the screws at the base of the phone were crosshead screws.



The changes may have been instigated by the growing popularity of do-it-yourself white iPhone conversion kits. A New York high school student recently made headlines when it was revealed that he had made as much as $130,000 selling kits that help users convert their black iPhone 4 units into white ones.



Apple has repeatedly delayed the launch of the white iPhone 4. In July, Apple admitted that the white hardware proved "more challenging to manufacture" than the company originally anticipated.



Apple Store burglary



Thieves stole over $10,000 of Apple merchandise Monday after smashing a plate-glass door at an Apple Store in the Shadyside neighborhood of Pittsburgh, Penn., MacNN reports. iPhones, iPods, and Macs were taken from the retail store.



Police are investigating whether the break-in is connected to a burglary at a nearby T-Mobile store, which had its glass storefront smashed several hours earlier.



In September, burglars stole more than $24,000 in products from an Apple Store in Naperville, Ill., also by smashing glass to gain entrance.



With high concentrations of valuable merchandise and glass storefronts, Apple stores have become the occasional target of "smash and grab" burglaries. Last year, security footage at a New Jersey Apple Store showed robbers making off with 23 MacBook Pros, 14 iPhones and 9 iPod touches in 31 seconds.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 31
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    iPhone 4



    According to various reports, iPhone 4s are now shipping with 5-point torx screws, making the device harder for users to take apart. Units brought to Apple Stores for service are also being retro-fitted with the new screws. Previously, the screws at the base of the phone were crosshead screws.



    The changes may have been instigated by the growing popularity of do-it-yourself white iPhone conversion kits. A New York high school student recently made headlines when it was revealed that he had made as much as $130,000 selling kits that help users convert their black iPhone 4 units into white ones.



    If people have the skills/guts to risk opening up their iPhone 4 I don't think switching to torx screws is much of a deterrent.
  • Reply 2 of 31
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ltcommander.data View Post


    If people have the skills/guts to risk opening up their iPhone 4 I don't think switching to torx screws is much of a deterrent.



    My thoughts exactly. Torx screwdrivers are pretty cheap.
  • Reply 3 of 31
    From the pictures and other reports, it's a 5 sided non-standard Torx-like screw. Normal Torx drivers won't work. Somebody created one from scratch with a file and a lot of patience.
  • Reply 4 of 31
    mgl323mgl323 Posts: 247member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    Apple Store robbery



    Thieves stole over $10,000 of Apple merchandise Monday after smashing a plate-glass door at an Apple Store in the Shadyside neighborhood of Pittsburgh, Penn., MacNN reports. iPhones, iPods, and Macs were taken from the retail store.



    Police are investigating whether the robbery is connected to a burglary at a nearby T-Mobile store, which had its glass storefront smashed several hours earlier.



    In September, burglars stole more than $24,000 in products from an Apple Store in Naperville, Ill., also by smashing glass to gain entrance.



    With high concentrations of valuable merchandise and glass storefronts, Apple stores have become the occasional target of "smash and grab" robberies. Last year, security footage at a New Jersey Apple Store showed robbers making off with 23 MacBook Pros, 14 iPhones and 9 iPod touches in 31 seconds.





    31 seconds? Looks like it was planned ahead of time.
  • Reply 5 of 31
    Apple has the serial numbers on all this stuff. As soon as whoever buys the stolen goods tries to use it, the cops will come a-knockin'.
  • Reply 6 of 31
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,949member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by richwiss View Post


    My thoughts exactly. Torx screwdrivers are pretty cheap.



    Standard Torx is 6 point. A 5 point Torx can't be made just by filing off a point on a 6 point. However, it probably doesn't take 5 minutes for someone that's decent with a file. I've done just that in the past, though the bit I made was probably a little larger than what's needed for these screws.
  • Reply 7 of 31
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    Currently, Orange UK offers monthly 3G plans for the iPad: 3GB of data and unlimited browsing at Wi-Fi hotspots for £15 ($23.92), or 10GB of data and unlimited Wi-Fi hotspot access for £25 ($39.86).





    gimme that cheap service in the U.S. ....
  • Reply 8 of 31
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 32,955member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post


    Standard Torx is 6 point. A 5 point Torx can't be made just by filing off a point on a 6 point. However, it probably doesn't take 5 minutes for someone that's decent with a file. I've done just that in the past, though the bit I made was probably a little larger than what's needed for these screws.



    I wish people would stop talking about standard screws that can be gotten EVERYWHERE.



    I guarantee that every screw used in industry is a standard, and is something that anyone can buy.



    All this talk about filing is nuts! You can't file a six point torx to make a five point. The spacing is still way off.



    http://www.google.com/search?q=5+poi...&client=safari
  • Reply 9 of 31
    sennensennen Posts: 1,467member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by melgross View Post


    I wish people would stop talking about standard screws that can be gotten EVERYWHERE.



    I guarantee that every screw used in industry is a standard, and is something that anyone can buy.



    All this talk about filing is nuts! You can't file a six point torx to make a five point. The spacing is still way off.



    http://www.google.com/search?q=5+poi...&client=safari



    Ah, don't be such a killjoy for all the people laying in wait to sink the boot into apple...
  • Reply 10 of 31
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by melgross View Post


    I wish people would stop talking about standard screws that can be gotten EVERYWHERE.



    I guarantee that every screw used in industry is a standard, and is something that anyone can buy.



    All this talk about filing is nuts! You can't file a six point torx to make a five point. The spacing is still way off.



    http://www.google.com/search?q=5+poi...&client=safari



    Heh, Apple thinks that the average joe can't go online and find these special drivers. Same goes for them trying to prevent people from replacing their own batteries in the macbooks.
  • Reply 11 of 31
    Make a 5 point Torx screwdriver, call it the iTorx 5, sell them for $9.99

    .... Now off to reg the iTorx.com domain name
  • Reply 12 of 31
    Sounds like Apple needs to replace it's storefront windows with Gorilla Glass.
  • Reply 13 of 31
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post


    Sounds like Apple needs to replace it's storefront windows with Gorilla Glass.



    Where's transparent aluminum? Is Apple saving that for iPhone 6/iPad 3?
  • Reply 14 of 31
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 32,955member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sprockkets View Post


    Heh, Apple thinks that the average joe can't go online and find these special drivers. Same goes for them trying to prevent people from replacing their own batteries in the macbooks.



    I really don't know if this is the real reason. I'm sure Apple knows as much as anyone that these screws can be bought easily by typing it into Google, just as I did to make the point. And if some kid knows enough to do what he did, he certainly won't be put off by needing less common, but standard screws and bits.



    The problem with Cross screws, the ones Apple uses, and the ones that are standard in the Japanese camera industry, is that one, they aren't hardened, and two, it's difficult to find really good screwdrivers that fit closely. Usually, people will destroy the screw thinking it's a Phillips, which is very different.



    Torx screws and screwdrivers are all very precise, and are hardened. It's tough to make a mistake other than over torquing when putting them back. Maybe this was for their own service reasons, and is just odd timing. Who knows?
  • Reply 15 of 31
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 32,955member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by marokero View Post


    Where's transparent aluminum? Is Apple saving that for iPhone 6/iPad 3?



    You can make transparent aluminum, but it's only about 0.00000001" thick. Probably not strong enough.
  • Reply 16 of 31
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by melgross View Post


    I wish people would stop talking about standard screws that can be gotten EVERYWHERE.



    I guarantee that every screw used in industry is a standard, and is something that anyone can buy.



    All this talk about filing is nuts! You can't file a six point torx to make a five point. The spacing is still way off.



    http://www.google.com/search?q=5+poi...&client=safari



    Correct. ANSI and ASME standards compliant.
  • Reply 17 of 31
    nagrommenagromme Posts: 2,834member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by marokero View Post


    Where's transparent aluminum? Is Apple saving that for iPhone 6/iPad 3?



    Apple’s been using transparent (well, translucent) aluminum for years, for sleep lights and camera-active lights



    See: http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=922280



    (There are also visible pinhole clusters on various MacBooks: light sensors and mics. But the LED lights that shine through the metal are different—tinier holes and pretty near invisible.)
  • Reply 18 of 31
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by melgross View Post


    I really don't know if this is the real reason. I'm sure Apple knows as much as anyone that these screws can be bought easily by typing it into Google, just as I did to make the point. And if some kid knows enough to do what he did, he certainly won't be put off by needing less common, but standard screws and bits.



    The problem with Cross screws, the ones Apple uses, and the ones that are standard in the Japanese camera industry, is that one, they aren't hardened, and two, it's difficult to find really good screwdrivers that fit closely. Usually, people will destroy the screw thinking it's a Phillips, which is very different.



    Torx screws and screwdrivers are all very precise, and are hardened. It's tough to make a mistake other than over torquing when putting them back. Maybe this was for their own service reasons, and is just odd timing. Who knows?



    Actually it could have been done as a cost saving in manufacturing. Torx screws are as cheap as cross screws if you buy them in bulk (which Apple will), but the tool itself will last much longer, as it is not designed to "cam out", which eventually wears the tip of the driver, instead relying on the driver itself to limit torque.



    And yes, I loathe myself for knowing something that dull.
  • Reply 19 of 31
    wizard69wizard69 Posts: 13,369member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by melgross View Post


    You can make transparent aluminum, but it's only about 0.00000001" thick. Probably not strong enough.



    Or more precisely an Aluminum spinel. Look it uo on line or get a back issue of Tech Briefs. The current research is into bullet proof "glass". The glass being a laminate of the transparent Aluminum, a thick adhesive and a poly carbonate sheet. Very though stuff.
  • Reply 20 of 31
    Quote:

    Apple Store in the Shadyside neighborhood of Pittsburgh, Penn.



    There's your problem right there.
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