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No more lightning charging ports? Apple testing USB-C connector for future iPhones – Economic Times

Apple Inc. is testing future iPhone models that replace the current Lightning charging port with the more prevalent USB-C connector, according to people with knowledge of the situation, a move that could help the company conform with looming European regulations.

In addition to testing models with a USB-C port in recent months, Apple is working on an adapter that would let future iPhones work with accessories designed for the current Lightning connector, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the matter is private.

If the company proceeds with the change, it wouldn’t occur until 2023 at the earliest. Apple is planning to retain the Lightning connector for this year’s new models.

By moving to USB-C, Apple would streamline the collection of chargers used by its various devices. Most of the company’s iPads and Macs already rely on USB-C rather than Lightning. That means that Apple customers can’t use a single charger for their iPhone, iPads and Macs — an odd setup given Apple’s penchant for simplicity. Wireless chargers for both the iPhone and Apple Watch also use a USB-C connector for their power bricks.

Apple, based in Cupertino, California, declined to comment on the change.

The move, which analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has also predicted, would come with trade-offs — and potentially create confusion for customers. USB-C chargers are slightly larger than the Lightning connector, but can offer quicker charging speeds and data transfers. The new connectors also would be compatible with many existing chargers for non-Apple devices, like Android phones and tablets.

But the majority of Apple accessories — including AirPods, the Apple TV remote, the MagSafe battery pack and the MagSafe Duo charger — still use Lightning. The USB-C adapter in development could mitigate that issue, but it’s unclear if Apple would include that in the box or make customers pay extra for it.

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Apple is planning to retain the Lightning connector for this year’s new models.

There’s also a wide range of third-party accessories, such as chargers, car adapters and external microphones, that use the existing connector. A switch would force third-party providers to redesign their products.

And the shift would lessen Apple’s control over the iPhone accessories marketplace. Apple forces accessory makers to pay it to use the Lightning connector and partake in a stringent approval process. USB-C is a standard used by many consumer device makers, including most Android phone manufacturers, making it less likely that Apple will be able to exert its usual level of control.

In recent years, Apple also has worked on iPhones without any charging port, seeking to promote the MagSafe wireless charging system introduced in 2020. But a wireless connection is often slower at charging a phone’s battery and doesn’t sync data with other devices as quickly. It’s also not practical in all situations, such as the setup in some cars.

A key reason for making the change is the European Union’s decision to force phone and other device makers to adopt USB-C. In April, legislation for such a requirement was approved by a majority vote.

“Mobile phones, tablets, digital cameras, headphones and headsets, handheld video-game consoles and portable speakers, rechargeable via a wired cable, would have to be equipped with a USB Type-C port, regardless of the manufacturer,” according to the legislation.

Apple has said the European law would hurt its ability to innovate. “We are concerned that regulation mandating just one type of connector for all devices on the market will harm European consumers by slowing down the introduction of beneficial innovations in charging standards, including those related to safety and energy efficiency,” the company said last year.

Apple could conceivably release a version of the iPhone for Europe that is compliant while keeping Lightning elsewhere. But having multiple versions of the same iPhone with different connectors would probably bring even more confusion, as well as supply-chain headaches.

It’s unclear if Apple might ultimately abandon the USB-C switch if the European law fails to materialize. Many consumers have been calling for the change regardless, for the sake of simplicity.

A move to USB-C would be the second port change in the iPhone’s history. Starting with the original iPhone in 2007 through the iPhone 4s in 2011, Apple used the 30-pin iPod connector popularized years earlier. With the iPhone 5, Apple switched to the smaller Lightning port, touting its more durable design that could be inserted into the iPhone in either direction.

That switch drew some complaints, but customers embraced the change fairly quickly. At the time, Apple sold a separate adapter for old accessories. It cost $29.

Apple’s ‘Peek Performance’ Event: Pocket-friendly New iPhone SE, Mac Studio, And More

Apple’s First Affordable Smartphone In Two Years

Apple has kick-started 2022 on a positive note with its first launch event broadcast live from Apple Park in Cupertino, California. The ‘Peek Performance’ event witnessed the launch of Apple’s budget-friendly smartphone iPhone SE, iPad Air, Mac computers and more.

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Glencore Reaches Settlements With U.S., U.K., Brazil on Bribery, Market Manipulation – The Wall Street Journal


The Justice Department in Washington, D.C. The settlement of the investigations removes a distraction for Glencore.

Photo: Ting Shen for The Wall Street Journal

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Reference genomes provide first insights into genetic roots of mustelid physiological and behavioral diversity – Science Daily

Mustelids are the most ecologically and taxonomically diverse family within the order Carnivora. From the tayra in the neotropics to the wolverine in the subarctic, they inhabit a variety of ecological niches and developed corresponding species-specific traits related to their diet, reproductive strategy and morphology. An international team of scientists led by the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research (Leibniz-IZW) conducted a comparative analysis of whole genomes of several mustelids to obtain insights into the molecular basis of these adaptations. The team found that multiple sources of genomic variation contributed to candidate genes, including those that change the number, position, orientation or size of genes in a species’ genome. The latter forms of genomic variation are frequently neglected in genome studies of wildlife species, and the authors argue that this needs to change.

The Mustelidae are the most ecologically and taxonomically diverse family within the mammalian order Carnivora and includes the badgers, ferrets, weasels and otters. Even closely related mustelids often inhabit different ecosystems where they face very different challenges. Consequently, they evolved a large variety of species-specific behavioural, morphological and physiological adaptations related to diet and reproduction. As recent developments in sequencing technologies and analytical methods permit the construction of draft genomes for many wild species, mustelids provide wildlife geneticists with the opportunity to unravel the roots of this diversity by identifying regions in the genome associated with ecologically relevant traits.

“We focused on the subfamily Guloninae, within which several species occupy a variety of ecological niches, ranging from the omnivorous tayra (Eira barbara) in the neotropics to the carnivorous wolverine (Gulo gulo) in the resource-scarce subarctic,” says Lorena Derežanin, a PhD student at the Department of Evolutionary Genetics of the Leibniz-IZW and first author of the paper. “This is the first study comparing the genomes of ecologically disparate species within this diverse subfamily and sheds light on how these species evolved,” says Klaus-Peter Koepfli, a Senior Research Scientist at George Mason University in the US and a co-author on the study.

The research team produced the first reference genome of the tayra and compared it to the available genomes for the wolverine and the sable (Martes zibellina), two other members of the Guloninae that are ecologically quite different. They found that not only do the “single nucleotide variants,” essentially single “letter” changes in the genetic code, contribute to species differences in genes associated with ecologically relevant traits, but that large scale changes known as structural variants were also important, affecting parts of specific genes or multiple genes. “Our results are important, as they demonstrate that many types of processes responsible for genomic variation need to be considered, including those that can rapidly change the number and function of genes in a genome,” says Derežanin. “If we use the metaphor of a book to represent the DNA sequences in a genome, then the kind of changes we are talking about are akin to deleting, moving, or duplicating large chunks of text, on a scale of paragraphs, pages or even whole chapters,” adds Daniel Förster, a scientist at the Leibniz-IZW and senior author of the paper.

The research team identified modifications in many genes that could be associated with the species’ different ecologies. For example, in the genome of the tayra, the only Guloninae species that breeds throughout the year, they found many modifications of pregnancy-related genes. In the wolverine, a circumpolar carnivore that must cope with seasonal food scarcity, many modified genes were associated with diet and body condition. “In a sense, starving for longer periods is part of the wolverine lifestyle, and we identified candidate genes that allow them to cope with this,” says Jörns Fickel, head of the Leibniz-IZW Department of Evolutionary Genetics. “Generating further genomes for species from this diverse mammalian family will be a strong foundation to help us understand how genomes evolve in response to different environmental challenges.”

Story Source:

Materials provided by Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research (IZW). Note: Content may be edited for style and length.

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Zimbabwe Crumble In Final T20I As Namibia Seal Historic Series Win – 263chat.com

Namibia – 127-8 in 20 overs (Craig Williams 48, Ruben Trumpelmann 19*, Jan Frylinck 15; Wessly Madhevere 2/15, Luke Jongwe 2/16, Sikandar Raza 2/18)

Zimbabwe – 95 all out in 19.1 overs (Tony Munyonga 28, Innocent Kaia 12, Sikandar Raza 12; Gerhard Erasmus 2/9, Jan Frylinck 2/25, Ben Shikongo 1/9)

Namibia won by 32 runs

Zimbabwe suffered a 32-run defeat at the hands of Namibia in the fifth and final T20I match at Queens Sports Club on Tuesday, giving the tourists an historic series victory.

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Going into the match level at two wins apiece, the hosts won the toss and decided to put the visitors in to bat first.

For three overs Namibia made a strong showing, with Craig Williams and Michael van Lingen rattling up 31 runs to give them a cracking start.

But then van Lingen, who hit two fours and scored 12 off seven balls, was caught at the wicket by Richmond Mutumbami off Brad Evans, and Namibia were never to have it so good again.

Jan Nicol Loftie-Eaton stayed in with Williams to score nine off 10 balls, 17 runs coming off the next three overs before he was bowled by Jongwe for nine.

Jongwe then struck a major blow when he had Gerhard Erasmus, the hero of Sunday’s match, caught at the wicket second ball without scoring, and wickets continued to fall steadily.

Williams played a superb innings, but four middle-order batters came and went for single-figure scores – two wickets to Jongwe and two to Sikandar Raza.

Jan Frylinck then came in at 84 for five in the 12th over and played with more stability.

At 97, Williams’ fine innings came to an end at 48 with a run-out, Donald Tiripano fielding the ball, after he had faced 39 balls and hit five fours.

Frylinck was then stumped off Wessly Madhevere for 15 off 21 balls, and in the 17th over Namibia were in deep trouble at 106 for eight.

The bowlers could not finish off the innings, though, as Ruben Trumpelmann hit out boldly, while Bernard Scholtz held his end up in support.

Trumpelmann scored 19 not out off 14 balls, with a six and a four, while the partnership added 21 vital runs.

The innings finished at 127 for eight, giving Zimbabwe a target they should be able to reach.

There were two wickets each to Jongwe, Raza and Madhevere, all for less than 20 runs, which was commendable bowling.

Zimbabwe began the chase comfortably enough, with Madhevere and Innocent Kaia scoring 23 together for the first wicket.

However, when Madhevere fell lbw to Frylinck for 10 in the fourth over, disaster struck.

The same bowler bowled out the new man, Regis Chakabva, with his next delivery, and then Kaia was run out for 12.

Three wickets had gone down in four runs, and Zimbabwe were reeling at 27 for three.

The experience of Raza and the cool head of Tony Munyonga now had to repair the damage and put Zimbabwe on the right path again.

For the most part they scored in singles, waiting for the bad balls to look for boundaries.

They added 26 in 4.3 overs before Namibia broke through again, and Raza was caught at the wicket off Ben Shikongo for 12 – 53 for four in the ninth over.

One run later, Mutumbami was bowled by Scholtz, and Zimbabwe were now in serious trouble at 54 for five.

Tiripano batted usefully for three overs, as he and Munyonga scored mainly in singles, until he was caught off Erasmus for 11 off 15 balls, the score now being 72 for six in the 13th over.

Jongwe now joined Munyonga, but the bowling and fielding was too tight for them to score easily, and the run rate rose steadily to more than 10 an over.

Effectively the last nail was hammered into the home side’s coffin when Munyonga was bowled by Wiese after 17 overs for a fine fighting innings of 28 off 31 balls – the only Zimbabwe batter to score more than 12 runs in the match.

The score was now 88 for seven, with 40 runs needed off the final three overs.

Jongwe was then run out for seven, Brad Evans bowled by Erasmus for two, and finally Brandon Mavuta was caught off Trumpelmann to complete the rout for 95 runs with five balls left unbowled.

All six bowlers used took at least one wicket, with Frylinck and Erasmus picking up two.

This is Namibia’s first T20I series victory against a Full Member.

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