The Flock: Another tech podcast


Just for Clicks: The iPhone non-rumor

3 December 2018

So. What’s new with technology?

Nothing much. It’s been a quiet week.

What can we discuss? Oh, you know what? A trailer for Avengers 4 is probably co—


Writing for Forbes, Gordon Kelly is ready to add some intrigue and spice to an otherwise drowsy Internet, proclaiming, “Apple Leak Reveals Radical New iPhone Design.”

There isn’t an asterisk following the title of Kelly’s article, but there are enough caveats to this story to warrant three or four asterisks. It’s that serious.

Ever-reliable blog Patently Apple writes that supply chain insiders have revealed Apple is seriously considering bringing back the fingerprint reader. And with a modern twist.

Okay. Let’s slow down. The Patently Apple report — to which Kelly linked in that previous paragraph — does not state that Apple is seriously considering doing anything.

The report simply says that Apple is now sourcing most of its fingerprint readers from suppliers that also produce in-display fingerprint readers. But there is no indication that Apple has ordered in-display scanners from them; for all we know, Apple could still be ordering Touch ID sensors for Home buttons.

And, again, the report mentions nothing of what kind of technology Apple is “seriously considering” using. Apple’s plans are as shrouded in mystery as they were before you chose to read this article. If you want to keep score, the number of details Kelly has completely fabricated so far in this article is currently at one but is set to rise.

Remember that headline? The one about a crazy insane awesome iPhone design? What the heck are you talking about? This article is about the iPad.

Interestingly, this is said to be for next year’s iPads first but used as a trial ahead of introducing it in new iPhones.

There’s the second detail pulled out of thin air. Patently Apple never says this is a “trial run” for the iPhone — in fact, nowhere in the report is the iPhone mentioned.

Even the idea that the iPad could get in-display Touch ID and lose the Home button is speculation on the part of Patently Apple. Speculation is no problem; what is a problem is that Kelly treats this speculation as confirmed fact when no evidence supports it.

Kelly should — and, let’s face it, probably does — know better than to pull tricks like this on his readers. Time and time again, he’s proven himself less a journalist than a con artist. Every time there’s any story like this, however tangentially connected to a sensational headline, Kelly takes the bait and then makes more bait.

The headline of Kelly’s piece refers to a “Radical New iPhone Design”. The report he cites says nothing of in-display fingerprint reader technology making its way to the iPhone. What the report actually contends could be possible — that the iPad could move from Home button-powered Touch ID to in-display Touch ID — is also not supported by any evidence.

With the drastic mismatch between what Kelly claims in his headline and proves in his article, Kelly has downright lied to and misled his readers. There is no getting around it: zero evidence has arisen that any future iPhone will feature Touch ID reborn. Zero.

Kelly states very obviously that an Apple leak has revealed a radical new iPhone design and does not follow through in proving so. If that doesn’t meet your definition of lying, Uluroo isn’t sure what does.

So, seriously, has anything interesting happened in tech?