Apple World Today News Update: March 29, 2018

Today's Apple World Today News Update podcast features stories that will be of interest to people with big forearms, those who keep their iPads plugged in all the time, and potential murderers:

  • Apple's coming out with a larger version of the Sport Loop Apple Watch Band, perfect for those with monstrous forearms
  • The iOS 11.3 update includes a new feature to help battery health on iPads that are plugged in all the time
  • Heart rate data from an Apple Watch is being used as key evidence in an Australian murder trial

The text version of the podcast can be read below. To listen to the podcast here, click the play button on the player below. Apple News readers need to visit Apple World Today in order to listen to the podcast.

Text Version

This is Steve Sande for Apple World Today, and you’re listening to the AWT News Update podcast for Thursday, March 29, 2018.

Do you have really big forearms, so muscular that you can’t wear an Apple Watch? Never fear, Apple’s coming out with a larger version of the Sport Loop Apple Watch band that will give the Hulk a chance to sport one of Apple’s wearables. The company does this with the Leather Loops, Sport Bands and Link Bracelets, but until now the Sport Loop bands have only been available for those of us with thinner forearms. The Sport Loops are really comfortable and quite popular, and were introduced with the Apple Watch Series 3 last year.

Today’s iOS 11.3 update brought a few power management features to iPhone and iPad, one of which we knew about in advance. That feature is the beta battery health assessment for iPhone that provides a way to visualize the maximum and peak performance capacity of an iPhone’s battery, and lets you disable the performance throttling if it’s in effect. The feature we didn’t know about is for iPads that are used in kiosks or that are otherwise plugged in all day. According to Apple, “iPad uses rechargeable lithium-ion batteries which are designed to be charged and then discharged over their lifespan. When they remain at full charge for prolonged periods of time, battery health can be affected.” What the new charge management feature does is monitors the iPad for use in these situations, then reduces the maximum charge level temporarily to protect the device’s battery. When that happens, the battery indicator in the iOS status bar displays the charge based on the adjusted maximum battery level. When the iPad is no longer connected to power for prolonged periods, that max charge level will revert back to the previous level.

Here’s something that sounds like it’s right out of an episode of CSI. Activity data that was on an Apple Watch is going to be used as key evidence for the prosecution in an Australian murder trial. The victim, Myrna Nilsson, was allegedly murdered by her daughter-in-law Caroline in September 2016 at their home in Adelaide. Caroline claimed that Myrna had been attacked by a group of men after a road rage incident, but a prosecutor told the Adelaide Magistrates Court that a forensic expert had determined that Caroline was lying. The data from the Apple Watch narrowed the time between Myrna’s attack and death to a seven-minute period, starting with a burst of activity and ending with no heartbeat. This conflicts with Caroline’s statement that Myrna argued with her attackers for 20 minutes, and Caroline apparently also texted her husband 17 minutes after the murder and was shopping on eBay 11 minutes after that, despite her testimony that she was attacked and tied up. Caroline was denied bail after the forensic expert’s testimony and is awaiting trial. Apple Watches don’t lie…

That’s all the news for today - join me tomorrow afternoon for another edition of the AWT News Update.