This week on AppleInsider: Apple Pay in the UK, iPod touch refresh, e-SIM & more

in General Discussion edited July 2015
A relatively quiet week was, at least, spiced up by two important Apple announcements: the arrival of Apple Pay in the United Kingdom, and a long-overdue update of the iPod touch.

Apple Pay makes splash in the UK

The service officially launched in the region on Monday, available in apps and at over 250,000 retail locations, the latter belonging to the likes of Boots, Waitrose, and Transport for London, which oversees networks like the famous London Underground. A number of financial institutions declared card support, such as NatWest, Santander, and the Royal Bank of Scotland.

One bank originally expected to participate, HSBC, suddenly revealed that it would be waiting up to two weeks to join in. Barclays meanwhile said only that support would be forthcoming.

Apple updates iPod touch, adds new colors for iPod nano and shuffle

Having neglected the device since 2012, Apple finally updated the Touch with an A8 processor, an M8 motion coprocessor, and an 8-megapixel rear camera. The device also picked up a new 128-gigabyte capacity, joining existing 16-, 32-, and 64-gigabyte options. Color choices now include blue, gold, pink, red, silver, and space gray.

The same assortment of colors was introduced to the iPod nano and touch. Those devices were otherwise left alone however, despite their designs tracing back to 2012 and 2010 respectively.

Apple, Samsung back universal 'e-SIM' standard for cellular devices

The two companies were said to be working with carriers around the world on the standard, which could make it far easier to sign up for a data plan. Typically a SIM card locks users into a single network, but e-SIMs could make it easy to switch at will.

Apple experimented with a similar, in-house technology for the iPad Air 2, called Apple SIM. It remains to be seen if it will be used for any other Apple devices, but in any case, e-SIM won't come to shipping products until at least 2016.

Leaked 'iPhone 6s Plus' casing hints at tougher construction

A person who claimed to have got their hands on the part described its metal as feeling "stronger" than the iPhone 6 Plus. That would align with rumors that Apple is switching to tougher 7000-series aluminum for both the so-called 6s Plus and a regular, 4.7-inch 6s.

In 2014 the 6 Plus was at the center of a "bendgate" controversy. Some device owners and YouTube channels complained that under sustained pressure -- for instance sitting with it in a back pocket -- the phone could be permanently warped.

AppleInsider podcast

AppleInsider veterans Daniel Eran Dilger, Neil Hughes, and Victor Marks gathered together to talk about the iPod touch, an iPhone 6c, the rumored iPad Pro, and why Mac owners should uninstall Adobe Flash.


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