How Powerful Is Apple?

In February 2016, the US government ordered the tech company, Apple, to create software that could grant unauthorized access into the iPhone The FBI has said this access would allow them to investigate a suspect in the San Bernardino terror attack

But Apple’s CEO Tim Cook has refused, saying that a backdoor to the iPhone could lead to significant privacy concerns for its customers It is rare for a major company to defy the federal government, so we wanted to know, just how powerful is Apple? Well, Apple is the world’s most valuable publicly traded company In February 2015 it rose to be the first US company worth more than $700 billion dollars, about the same as the GDP of Saudi Arabia Since 1976, Apple has manufactured and sold personal computers, but they are now better known for consumer electronics, including phones, tablets, mp3 players and smartwatches Apple has sold more than 700 million iPhones worldwide, and stand as the leading smartphone retailer in the US But much of Apple’s financial success doesn’t come from its quantity of sales, but rather the amount spent on each device

In fact, iPhones only count for roughly 14 percent of the global smartphone market Yet, Apple still makes more than half of the total profits in that industry This, combined with the tight ecosystem of their products, has given Apple an unusual amount of brand loyalty In a 2015 survey of iPhone users, more than 83 percent of respondents said they planned to stick with Apple for their next smartphone purchase Apple product releases and store openings are known to attract thousands of people, some of whom wait for hours in line

With such a widespread level of reach and influence, any security breach on Apple products has severe consequences This was demonstrated in 2014, when hundreds of private photos of celebrities surfaced online as the result of a suspected iCloud hack This was not only devastating to those who were involved, but it raised concern around the security of services like iCloud, which store mass amounts of private information In fact, later that same year, the company revamped the level of encryption in their mobile operating systems, preventing hackers, governments, and even Apple themselves from gaining access Tim Cook has long described digital privacy as a human right, and has repeatedly moved beyond his role as CEO, into the center of high-stakes social and political issues

As Apple devices have increasingly been able to carry more personal data, they have been forced to become more secure The most recent pushback on government intrusion has shown that Apple is powerful enough to stand up to even the FBI But how can Apple just deny access to the government? What does Tim Cook mean when he says they’re unable to access phones produced by Apple? How does encryption work? Check out this DNews video to find out! (sound up) Thanks for watching TestTube News, don’t forget to like and subscribe for new videos every day!

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