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Old Jun 9, 2014, 02:38 PM   #1
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iOS 8 Tidbits: Randomized MAC Addresses, Safari Credit Card Scanning, Indoor Mapping, and More




With iOS 8 installed on thousands of developer devices, details about the operating system continue to leak out. We covered quite a few new iOS 8 features listed during the keynote by Apple, including battery usage by app, and then followed that up with even more iOS 8 tweaks and changes, such as time-lapse mode, Messages improvements, WiFi calling, and grayscale mode.

Pulling from an extensive list maintained by our forum members and other iOS 8 users on Twitter and the web, we've catalogued even more improvements to the operating system below.

Randomized MAC addresses - iOS randomizes the MAC addresses of iOS devices when scanning for WiFi networks, which makes it more difficult for companies to track and gather location data on a customer. Each iOS device has a unique MAC address, which could previously be used for location tracking and data collection via WiFi scanning. iOS 8 will use random, locally administered MAC addresses that "may not always be the device's real (universal) address."

Safari credit card scanning - In iOS 8, Safari can utilize the camera to scan in credit card numbers when making online purchases, a faster alternative than manually entering a credit card number. Currently, this scanning function is available in the App Store to scan in iTunes Cards, and the credit card scan functions in the same way.

Photos in the Notes app - Photos can be inserted into the Notes app from the Photos app for the first time in iOS 8.

Hide images from Photos app - Images in the Photos app can now be hidden from the Moments, Collections, and Years view in the Photos app. Holding a finger on a photo will bring up an options menu and selecting "Hide" will keep it from being visible in those sections. Hidden photos are still visible in the albums view, however, in new "Hidden" album.

Background location notifications - iOS 8 has new popups that will notify users of apps that access Location information while running in the background. The popup asks users if they want to continue to allow the apps to access the information or turn it off, giving users more information on apps that could potentially be using a lot of battery life. There are also more Location Services options in the Settings menu and more options per app, for more control over how Location is used.

iTunes Radio Control Center - When playing a song on iTunes Radio, the Control Center will now offer a "Buy" button to give users a quick way to purchase a song.

Indoor Mapping - iOS 8 adds the M7 processor and iPhone motion sensors to the CoreLocation API, allowing venue owners to create indoor positioning systems. In use at San Francisco's California Academy of Sciences, the Westfield Center in San Francisco, and the San Jose Airport, the system can be used to display floor number or direct users to points of interest.

Keep up with all of the new changes introduced in iOS 8 on our forums, where our readers are discussing and sharing feature enhancements and tweaks in the "iOS 8, All The Little Things" thread.

Article Link: iOS 8 Tidbits: Randomized MAC Addresses, Safari Credit Card Scanning, Indoor Mapping, and More
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 02:40 PM   #2
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Will MAC address randomization mess up people who have MAC filtering on their wireless networks? Is it required?
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 02:41 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by mathcolo View Post
Will MAC address randomization mess up people who have MAC filtering on their wireless networks? Is it required?
I would assume there's a "trust this network with my unique device ID" option under wifi? That would make some sense.
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 02:41 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by mathcolo View Post
Will MAC address randomization mess up people who have MAC filtering on their wireless networks? Is it required?
I think it's only when you're not connected (scanning) for a network. When you connect it uses the proper MAC address.
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 02:41 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by MacRumors
With iOS 8 installed on thousands of developer devices
Right.
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 02:42 PM   #6
Brian Y
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<Removing this post, since people are still replying to it 3 pages later instead of reading the topic>

Last edited by Brian Y; Jun 10, 2014 at 06:12 PM.
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 02:42 PM   #7
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The "hide images from photos app" seems a bit odd. Why would anybody want to hide the pictures they are—oh, wait…
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 02:43 PM   #8
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My favorite app is the "Bug Reporter". I been using this app like crazy! It makes reporting issues super easy! LOVE IT!
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 02:45 PM   #9
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Hopefully the Beats acquisition will quickly turn the music division around. That buy button in the control panel looks hideous.
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 02:46 PM   #10
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I don't want to accidentally hit "BUY" in iTunes Radio control center. I'm sure I'll still need to confirm, but it will probably switch over to the iTunes Store app and I'll have to home out of that. Sounds annoying.
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 02:48 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Brian Y View Post
If there's no way to disable this randomised MAC stuff, then no iOS 8 device is going to be able to connect to my network at home, or my corporate network at work.

It also means that networks which rely on MAC for authentication (such as the WiFi on the underground here in London) won't work.

Bit silly if you ask me. I'm not sure how a randomised MAC address helps improve security in any way.
It's more for privacy than anything. From what I understand, it's only for when the device is scanning for new wifi to connect to. When you actually connect (or have already connected) the real MAC address is used just as always.
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 02:49 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Y View Post
If there's no way to disable this randomised MAC stuff, then no iOS 8 device is going to be able to connect to my network at home, or my corporate network at work.

It also means that networks which rely on MAC for authentication (such as the WiFi on the underground here in London) won't work.

Bit silly if you ask me. I'm not sure how a randomised MAC address helps improve security in any way.
This is a privacy issue, not a security issue. And I'm sure you'll still be able to connect to your networks. Give Apple a little credit.
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 02:49 PM   #13
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My favorite app is the "Bug Reporter". I been using this app like crazy! It makes reporting issues super easy! LOVE IT!
At least it's better than doing it from the website. I don't know how many times I've had it time out on me without warning...
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 02:50 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Y View Post
If there's no way to disable this randomised MAC stuff, then no iOS 8 device is going to be able to connect to my network at home, or my corporate network at work.

It also means that networks which rely on MAC for authentication (such as the WiFi on the underground here in London) won't work.

Bit silly if you ask me. I'm not sure how a randomised MAC address helps improve security in any way.
From what I read elsewhere, the fake MAC addresses are just for when you're walking around, not on and not attempting to get on wifi.
" When iOS 8 devices look for a connection, they randomize that address, effectively disguising any trace of the real device until it decides to connect to a network."

So once you actively try to connect to a network, this spoofing is disabled. Unless I am understanding this wrong also?
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 02:50 PM   #15
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MAC randomization, clear/simple app permission management, DuckDuckGo, double-checking that you want to be tracked, strict sandboxing of apps and extensions... security and privacy really are king at Apple. How's Android innovation doing on that front?

With iOS 8, we have our cake and eat it too: the flexibility and extensibility that Android crammed in first (with too little regard for safety) but done carefully and correctly, built on a deep security architecture. There's no "band-aid" Google can invent to bring that kind of safety and privacy to Android. But privacy isn't really Google's core mission...
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 02:50 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Y View Post
If there's no way to disable this randomised MAC stuff, then no iOS 8 device is going to be able to connect to my network at home, or my corporate network at work.

It also means that networks which rely on MAC for authentication (such as the WiFi on the underground here in London) won't work.

Bit silly if you ask me. I'm not sure how a randomised MAC address helps improve security in any way.
It's only when you aren't connected and scanning for available networks. Once you go to connect, it will provide the real MAC address.
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 02:50 PM   #17
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I'm still not able to find any definitive information on whether or not the iPhone also randomizes Bluetooth MAC addresses. If anybody has information on that, please share.
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 02:53 PM   #18
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Hide images from photos app, I wonder if this would hide the images from photostream. I can only think of naughty purposes as to why you want to hide images
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 02:55 PM   #19
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I can see grocery stores making use of the indoor mapping feature. I don't know how many times I wish I could pull up maps to find the tomato sause when my wife sends me to the store.
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 02:59 PM   #20
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iOS 7/8 Notes app looks sooo bad...
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 03:00 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nagromme View Post
MAC randomization, clear/simple app permission management, DuckDuckGo, double-checking that you want to be tracked, strict sandboxing of apps and extensions... security and privacy really are king at Apple. How's Android innovation doing on that front?
I know that in Chrome, using a new search engine is trivial. You type in the URL of the search engine's main page and bam, that's your search engine in Chrome. With Safari on the desktop, on the other hand, I had to install a plugin to get DuckDuckGo working.

I haven't used an Android device in ~19 months, so I couldn't say how they're doing on the other fronts right now.
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 03:01 PM   #22
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The "hide images from photos app" seems a bit odd. Why would anybody want to hide the pictures they are—oh, wait…

Still seems useless to me as they aren't gone, but just hidden in one view
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 03:01 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by mbh View Post
This is a privacy issue, not a security issue. And I'm sure you'll still be able to connect to your networks. Give Apple a little credit.
This.

Randomized MAC addresses will stop all those nefarious wi-fi customer tracking systems from working properly on a randomized MAC device.
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 03:13 PM   #24
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Background location notifications.

Re. this feature, I read the Apple presentation on this sub topic and in future, these specific app badges for permissions will (have to?) display the reason why the app is requesting permission. Debs are encouraged to request only those permissions truly needed by the app to do its job.
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Old Jun 9, 2014, 03:16 PM   #25
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This.

Randomized MAC addresses will stop all those nefarious wi-fi customer tracking systems from working properly on a randomized MAC device.
This alone is why I will download 2 seconds after it is release. I need the two seconds to catch my breath
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