Apple World Today News Update: April 25, 2018

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Today's podcast has some bragging points for iOS device owners to lord over their Android-owning buddies, word about a new malware variant that's pretending to be an Adobe Flash Player installer, and your new Lexus may have Apple CarPlay (but no touchscreen):

  • 76% of all iOS devices are now running iOS 11 with another 19% running iOS 10. Compare that to the tiny 0.5% of all Android devices running Android 8.1 Oreo...
  • Malwarebytes found a nasty little malware variant that pretends to be an Adobe Flash Player installer. Hint - don't use Flash
  • The 2019 Lexus US luxury sedan will come with CarPlay, but uses a trackpad instead of a touchscreen as a user interface

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 Wednesday, April 25th, 2018.

We always love to point out to Apple fans and Android owners alike just how the two ecosystems vary in terms of how many devices are running the latest version of the operating system. Apple today revealed its figures on what percentage of all iOS devices are running iOS 11, and it’s at 76% after being released on September 19, 2017. 19% of all devices are running iOS 10, while a tiny 5% are running earlier versions of the operating system. What that means is that 95% of all iOS devices are currently running an operating system that is less than two years old. Let’s compare that to the Android world. The latest version of Android is version 8.1 Oreo, which is installed on 0.5% of all Android devices after release on December 5, 2017. Only 4.6% are running Android 8.0 or newer. Take a look at the Android ecosystem and you’ll find that 22.9% are running Android version 5.0 and 5.1 Lollipop, which will be four years old this November and no longer supports security patches. 26% are running Android 6.0 Marshmallow, which is almost three years old. As an Apple iOS owner, you’re getting the latest features on your device in a really stable operating system.

All of here at Apple World Today dislike Adobe Flash Player, which causes no end of issues to Macs and PCs alike. Apple’s Safari web browser disables Flash by default, and since most website have moved on to HTML5 it’s rare when you’ll be asked to turn Flash on. Well, there’s a new form of malware that has just been identified and it’s masquerading as an Adobe Flash Player installer. The folks at Malwarebytes found the malware variant, and it’s particularly nasty since it tries to protect itself from removal. The malware changes the home page for both Chrome and Safari to a third party site, and it also prevents the user from changing that in the browser settings. It takes going in and removing a configuration profile to get rid of the home page. The way you’ll be able to do this is to go into System Preferences, then look for a Profiles icon. If there’s not one in there, then a configuration profile wasn’t installed. If there IS a Profiles icon, you just highlight the profile called AdminPrefs and delete it. You’ll need to run an anti-malware package like Malwarebytes or similar to remove the rest of the malware’s payload.

Toyota and Lexus were the last two major car manufacturers to accept Apple CarPlay, and Lexus announced today that the new ES luxury sedan will include Apple’s infotainment system. Customers can opt for a 12.3-inch widescreen display that has room for two more apps on the home screen, or choose the standard 8-inch display. Now what’s weird is that neither of these displays are touchscreens, which is really unusual for CarPlay. Instead, you’ll need to use the Lexus Remote Touch Interface trackpad to control the screen.

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