macOS iMessage Location Mystery

One thing I forgot to add to my WWDC18 Wish List was restoring a Location selection to the macOS iMessage account settings. Apple has done a good job integrating iOS and macOS functions over the years, global copy/paste, Handoff, etc., but there are strange and frustrating omissions such as Location in macOS iMessage.

iMessages-Compared.png

Apple ID has a default Location setting that used to be determined by the iTunes account credit card issue country. This isn’t the case anymore, and the country setting in Apple ID settings doesn’t seem to change it either. It’s not a problem on iOS because Location settings in FaceTime and iMessages override default Apple ID country settings to correctly format local country iPhone numbers so they display and message without any problem. iOS iMessage says it best: “Choose a country or region to allow iMessage to message local numbers in your address book.”  I guess Apple means Contacts but we get the meaning.

Once upon a time macOS iMessage had Location selection but it was removed in OS X El Capitan and has not reappeared since. macOS iMessage is basically unusable unless all the iMessage contact numbers are formatted with country codes.iMessages comparison iOS vs macOS

Of course Apple Support advice is: format all of your contact numbers with international prefixes.

No thank you. iOS handles everything flawlessly with a Location setting, please fix macOS iMessage so that it does too.

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WWDC18 Wish List

WWDC18 is almost here with the usual wish lists appearing everywhere. Here is mine.

1) CoreText Reboot: as said before it’s time for Apple to revisit their long convoluted advanced layout architecture story yet again and rewrite it. Make Unicode rendering  secure, offload rendering to the GPU, intelligently integrate OpenType Variable Type font capability, not via the creaky, crappy OS X era font pallet, and for goodness sakes migrate real vertical layout and other advanced typography goodies high level as possible across iOS and macOS. You know, the GX Vision thing. And don’t tell me Apple you don’t know what that means.

2) Apple Maps Cartography Reboot: the Justin O’Beirne era cartography must die before Apple Maps can be reborn into a fulfilling useful life. Also please use Japanese data suppliers that actually know how to read and write Japanese, and have been to Japan.

3) Japanese kana sorting that actually works in iCloud Music Library across iOS and macOS.

And please please pretty please fix the iPhone X Suica bug.

macOS High Sierra 10.13.3 still leaks encryption passwords in plain text

Thank goodness that Howard Oakley and friends are staying on top of APFS bugs and security issues:

If you have erased an existing unencrypted APFS volume to change it into an encrypted APFS volume in the last 20 days or so, then you can be certain that the passphrase to that encrypted volume is stored in your unified log, and accessible to anyone who can access your Mac as an admin user (or when an admin user is logged on).

Just like the last security problem, the actual APFS format is not the problem, a Disk Utility bug is. Hopefully Apple will fix this ASAP.