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Inside Apple (Dec 7th, 2018)

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1. The Australian parliament passed on Thursday a set of new cybersecurity measures that compels technology companies to provide law enforcement agencies access to encrypted customer messages. Legislators billed the draft legislation as important for national security and law enforcement in the fight against terrorism. Apple lobbied against the measure in recent months, saying, "It would be wrong to weaken security for millions of law-abiding customers in order to investigate the very few who pose a threat." Apple and other tech leaders expressed concern that if a large country like Australia pushed legislation through, other countries would follow suit. — CNET

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2. The arrest of Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou in Canada on the request of the U.S. could be trouble for Apple, according to Jim Cramer. The arrest "means any tech company that does a huge amount of business in China, including Apple or Micron or Intel or Skyworks or Qualcomm or Broadcom, is worth a little less today than it was yesterday," Cramer said. "Until we know more, we have to figure there could be more downgrades ahead [and] more pain to come in these tech stocks, unless the CFO is allowed to return to China, or at least released on her own recognizance." The announcement of the arrest came as President Donald Trump was meeting with Chinese President Xi Jiping to negotiate U.S.-China trade issues. — CNBC

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3. Morgan Stanley slashed its price target on Apple from $253 a share to $236 on Friday, joining a number of Wall Street firms cutting expectations on Apple stock. Morgan Stanley's Katy Huberty cited weak sales in China as the reason for the cut. "China is following in the footsteps of the US with replacement cycles lengthening, she wrote to investors. "Our recent meetings in Asia highlight a weakening China smartphone market, especially at the high-end where suppliers have seen order cuts across most vendors." — CNBC

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4. Apple products are getting more expensive and at much faster rate than inflation—something that could have dire consequences for the company. “Apple is becoming aggressive, perhaps overly so, in pricing the top-of-the-line models of its products," said Rafi Mohammed, a pricing strategy consultant. He said the move could be "putting its loyal relationship with its core customers at risk.” — THE WASHINGTON POST

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5. Apple's iPhone assembly partner Pegatron is reportedly moving away from China to Indonesia to sidestep the fallout from the ongoing U.S.-China trade dispute. "The Trump-Xi meeting will not affect the pace of Pegatron's strategy," a source told the Nikkei Asian Review. "The investment will be made either by the end of this month or at the beginning of next month at the latest, as it will require two quarters for Pegatron to move, install and certify equipment before the plant becomes fully operational."  — NIKKEI ASIAN REVIEW

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6. Many medical professionals are concerned about Apple's rollout of the ECG feature on its Apple Watch Series 4. In the fine print on the health feature, users are learning its not for people who already have atrial fibrillation, raising questions about who the technology is for. “At the least we’re going to see a lot of engendered anxiety and, at worst, it will be beyond anxiety,’’ Topol said. “Its value is if it’s used only in the right people—not for 20-year-olds who have an Apple Watch.’’ — THE WASHINGTON POST

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7. Apple has reportedly acquired Platoon—a British startup that discovers and cultivates emerging musicians. One of the company's co-founders has had a close relationship with Apple by working on the iTunes store and its early iTunes Festival. — THE TELEGRAPH

8. Apple is in talks to adapt a violent Israeli TV show—a sign to some that it isn't 100 percent in the family-friendly video content business. — APPLEINSIDER

9. Apple tried to buy the streaming rights for "Friends," but ultimately pulled its bid, despite needing a catalog of previously produced content for its coming streaming service. — RECODE

10. Apple has released a 18 watt USB-C power adapter for faster charging for iOS devices with a price tag of $29. — THE VERGE

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This newsletter is written and curated by Philadelphia-based freelance journalist Allen McDuffee.

Editing team: Lon Harris (editor-in-chief at Inside.com, game-master at Screen Junkies), Krystle Vermes (Breaking news editor at Inside, B2B marketing news reporter, host of the "All Day Paranormal" podcast), and Susmita Baral (editor at Inside, recent bylines in NatGeo, Teen Vogue, and Quartz. Runs the biggest mac and cheese account on Instagram).

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