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Winners and Losers: Apple reinvents the notch but is met with catastrophe in Brazil

It’s been an Apple centric week in the world of tech which is why the company has taken both slots in the latest Winners and Losers column.

Depending on who you ask, it’s either been a great week for Apple or one that the company would rather keep in the rearview mirror. For starters, Apple’s Far Out event brought a ton of new products for the 2022/2023 season, with the brand new Apple Watch Ultra being a particular standout. It was however Apple’s ingenious workaround for the notch on the iPhone 14 Pro that had the entire team thoroughly impressed.

Just before the Far Out event could commence however, Apple was struck with some devastating news as the Brazilian Government ruled that the company could no longer sell iPhones in the country. At a time when sales are waning, a blowback like this could have huge ramifications for Apple.

Apple Dynamic Island iPhone 14 Pro

Winner: Apple (for the Dynamic Island)

Apple’s Far Out event was easily one of its most jam packed occasions of recent memory. The company unveiled three Apple Watches, four iPhones and the Apple AirPods Pro 2 for good measure. If you’re an Apple fan then there’s definitely a lot to look forward to in the coming months.

While the iPhone 14 itself is a fairly modest upgrade over last year’s model, there’s a lot more to be said about the iPhone 14 Pro which finally does away with the controversial notch by replacing it with something entirely unique, known as the Dynamic Island.

At first glance, this pill-shaped notch might seem like a bit of a cop-out at a time when some Android devices manage to hide their front-facing cameras completely (see the Galaxy Z Fold 4), but Apple’s had a strike of genius by incorporating it into the UI, effectively becoming an ever changing notification banner.

The animations for the Dynamic Island make you forget that the notch is even there and you have to give Apple credit for thinking of a fun way to get around the new design without sacrificing the capabilities of Face ID. I think it’ll be a given that in a year’s time every other company will be trying to do its own version of the Dynamic Island, albeit with the smaller hole-punch cameras you tend to see on the competition.

Loser: Apple (for the Brazil ruling)

This week should have been a homerun for Apple (as it tends to be whenever it announces new products) but the company was hit with a major ruling from the Brazillian Government that says it is no longer allowed to sell iPhones in the country unless it reintroduces the charging brick to the box.

From the iPhone 12 onwards, Apple has shipped its smartphones without a wall adapter in the box, citing environmental concerns over its decision to do so. Even if you don’t think that Apple’s explanation is entirely genuine, it is fair to assume at this point that almost everyone living under the sun has at least several chargers lying around the house so there is some merit to the move.

Unfortunately the Brazillian Government hasn’t seen it quite the same way and is now pressuring Apple to go back on itself, citing the initial decision as “discrimination against the consumer”.

To make matters worse, there’s a £2 million fine attached to the ruling, alongside the suggestion that a move from Lightning to USB-C would be a far better way of protecting the environment. There’s no word yet as to what Apple plans to do in retaliation, but it isn’t hard to imagine steam coming out of Tim Cook’s ears.

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