The Morning After: Apple halts autonomous EV talks with Hyundai

But Apple is talking to several automakers.

Apple’s autonomous EV project has been courting several car manufacturers, with a barrage of reports pointing to Hyundai and Kia. The potential deal went from “close” to “paused”, and now, early today, the automakers are reportedly no longer in talks with Apple. Last month, we heard Hyundai would offer the electric vehicle platform for the car, codenamed Project Titan, while Apple would develop the vehicle’s hardware and software.

The Morning After

Is the deal off? Not definitively. All involved parties might want to keep progress and deal-making out of the spotlight, and Apple has also apparently spoken to no fewer than six Japanese carmakers. It’s not for lack of interest, it seems.

According to analyst Ming-chi Kuo, who has a good record on Apple rumors, Apple still plans to use Hyundai’s platform for its first EV, with Kia manufacturing the vehicle in the US around 2025 or later.

Then again, maybe it’s another standalone Apple TV, and it’ll just never happen.

— Mat

'A Glitch in the Matrix' and the obsession of simulation theory

The people who believe we’re not real.

The Morning After

If you've heard of simulation theory — the idea that our entire universe is running inside some sort of extra-dimensional computer — there's a good chance you encountered it from a high-profile believer, such as Elon Musk. But how would an average person embrace it? As part of this year’s online-only Sundance, Devindra Hardawar takes a look at A Glitch in the Matrix, Rodney Ascher's latest documentary about uniquely obsessive personalities who deeply believe in the theory. Continue reading.

Intel tries to take down Apple's M1 chip with a flurry of benchmarks

It's understandably nervous about its new CPU rival.

Intel has shared a legion of benchmarks claiming to show that 11th-generation Core i7 laptop processors are faster than Apple’s M1 chip. They do suggest there are areas where Intel can claim victory, but there are also questions about Intel’s methods.

The results have Intel pulling ahead of Apple in a Chrome browsing test, Office 365 tasks, Adobe creative apps and AI. While gaming was something of a wash, Intel pointed out that certain games simply aren’t available on Macs — which is accurate. Continue reading.

OnePlus 9 Pro leak hints at a Hasselblad camera tie-in

Don’t expect a medium-format sensor.

The Morning After

OnePlus has developed a reputation for phone cameras that are middling at best, but it might turn that around with the 9 Pro. YouTuber Dave2D has shared images of what looks to be a OnePlus 9 Pro with conspicuous Hasselblad branding on its rear four-camera array.

Don’t expect it to be a Hasselblad medium format sensor inside — that’s just not going to happen. The images show, however, two large camera lenses (likely standard and ultra-wide angle) along with two much smaller cameras for depth perception and macro shooting, going by typical smartphone camera setups. Hasselblad has a reputation for big-ticket cameras that are limited-runs — could OnePlus be doing something similar? Continue reading.

President Biden brings back weekly addresses with a podcast-like format

Expect more internet than radio.

President Biden is resurrecting the weekly radio address, but he’s hoping to keep it relevant through a simple strategy: ditch the radio. As The New York Times explained, the White House has launched a “weekly conversation” series that embraces the more informal style of podcasts. The first episode, a chat with a worker laid off during the pandemic, is available on YouTube and social media platforms, but probably won’t reach your local radio station. Continue reading.

Myanmar shuts down internet to stifle anti-coup protests

Instagram and Twitter are blocked, too.

The Morning After

Myanmar’s military leaders are extending their internet restrictions in a bid to limit protests against their coup. According to BBC News, NetBlocks discovered that Myanmar instituted a “near-total internet shutdown” in the country as of the morning of February 6th. Connectivity was just 16 percent of normal levels. Continue reading.

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