The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), a law passed in the United States over 20 years ago, criminalizes the production of technology intended to circumvent DRM. While most people equate this with pirating movies, the law has also drastically affected the technology repair industry, as more and more manufacturers implement DRM designed to limit repair options. For example, recent Mac computers have a chip which makes certain repairs impossible without Apple-authorized software. Read More
Xiaomi is a huge smartphone maker in many parts of the world, but not in the US. When the company announced its Pocophone sub-brand, there was some hope it could come to American shores. That doesn't appear to be the case, at least not officially. You can already purchase the Pocophone F1 from several US eBay sellers, but there are a few things to know before you do. Read More
Xiaomi's Pocophone F1 has already made waves in the smartphone industry for being incredibly affordable; a ~$300 phone with a Snapdragon 845 processor is virtually unheard of. Budget phones are inherently going to have some tradeoffs, and a less-obvious one has been discovered: lack of support for Widevine L1 DRM. Read More
OnePlus' phones are a great value, but they've each individually had a few drawbacks. One negative they all had in common, though, was a DRM deficiency. None of the company's handsets supported the correct Widevine level required for HD playback in Netflix. Distress on the subject came to a head late last year, and OnePlus surprisingly announced that it would add the feature in the future. In a comment on OnePlus' forums today the company confirmed that it was now able to update handsets to support it, but the process will require that you physically send the phone back to OnePlus for the update. Read More
The OnePlus 5T is one of our favorite phones at AP. It's a fantastic value, improving on its predecessor without costing a whole lot more. But there is still one unfortunate disadvantage to using one. Like OnePlus' older phones, it doesn't support the correct DRM level for HD playback on services such as Netflix. But OnePlus has promised us that this will be corrected in the future for the OnePlus 5 and 5T. Read More
This May, Netflix started blocking rooted and unlocked devices from downloading the company's app on Google Play. It was an unfortunate restriction that locked out many people and stirred up a lot of anger. Over the last week, some of us at AP have started noticing the app reappearing, even though our devices still don't pass SafetyNet/Google Play device certification. Read More
Earlier today, Netflix started showing up as 'incompatible' on the Play Store for rooted and unlocked Android devices. However, the app itself continued to work fine, leading some (including myself) to think it could have been an accident. However, Netflix has now confirmed to us that blocking modified devices from downloading the app was intentional. Read More
You know those scary warnings that show up whenever you unlock the bootloader on a phone? "We can't be held responsible... blah blah... reduced functionality... blah... fiery death... blah blah blah." Sometimes they aren't kidding. Users who have unlocked the new Xperia Z3 Compact have found that low-light camera performance drops considerably. It turns out to be because of DRM in Sony's image signal processing.
When it comes to publishers, few names stand out in the technical world like O'Reilly. With literally thousands of books and videos, there are topics ranging from Programming to Business, and Fitness to Photography. Not only does O'Reilly print under its own name, but it also owns several other brands including: Wiley, Packt Publishing, No Starch Press, and more. Almost every developer probably has a small stack of books with the trademark line-drawn animals on the covers.
In honor of Day Against DRM, O'Reilly has cut the price of everything in its entirely library by half. The discount applies to both books and videos, and it even includes brand new releases. Read More