Apr 27, 2019

Apple blocks popular apps that fight phone addiction

Photo: Silas Stein/picture alliance via Getty Images

Apple has removed or restricted features from at least 11 of the most downloaded screen-time tracking, phone-addiction fighting, and parental-control apps throughout 2019, according to a New York Times data analysis.

Why it matters: This report is an example of an increasingly common criticism of tech giants: They run the platform third parties rely on to reach consumers, but also own their own competing offerings.

Our thought bubble, via Axios' Kim Hart: It won’t be lost on critics that Apple, which has come under fire for the addictive nature of its products, is reportedly making it difficult for addiction-fighting apps to survive on its platform.

More context, via Axios' Ina Fried: Apple has a history of limiting apps that handle tasks being done by Apple itself. That said, the world could benefit from multiple approaches to battling screen addiction.

The backdrop: Apple CEO Tim Cook told "Axios on HBO" that he used to pick up his iPhone too much, but has reduced his notifications: "The number of times I pick up a device are declining."

Go deeper: The growing war on tech addiction

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Alaska becomes latest state to issue coronavirus stay-at-home order

Data: Axios reporting; Map: Danielle Alberti/Axios

Alaska issued a mandate Friday evening for all people in the state to "remain at their place of residence and practice social distancing" except for those engaged in essential services, including health care and government functions, effective Saturday at 5 p.m.

The big picture: This is the latest state to announce policies to enforce social distancing. More than 1.5 billion people worldwide were asked to stay home Monday.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 12 mins ago - Health

Focus group: Minnesota swing voters balk at Trump's Easter deadline

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

A group of Midwestern swing voters that supported President Trump's handling of the coronavirus less than two weeks ago is balking at his call for the U.S. to be "opened up" by Easter, saying they'll tolerate business closures for as long as it takes to contain the spread.

Why it matters: Their feedback suggests that some voters otherwise mostly supportive of the president — and who still see financial threats outpacing health threats — aren't so tired of social distancing that they're willing to risk ending it too quickly.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 7 a.m. ET: 607,965 — Total deaths: 28,125 — Total recoveries: 132,688.
  2. U.S.: Leads the world in cases. Total confirmed cases as of 7 a.m. ET: 104,837 — Total deaths: 1,711 — Total recoveries: 894.
  3. Federal government latest: President Trump signed the $2 trillion coronavirus stimulus bill to provide businesses and U.S. workers economic relief.
  4. State updates: North Carolina is latest state to issue stay-at-home order — New York is trying to nearly triple its hospital capacity in less than a month.
  5. World updates: Italy reported 969 coronavirus deaths on Friday, the country's deadliest day.
  6. Business latest: President Trump authorized the use of the Defense Production Act to direct General Motors to build ventilators for those affected by COVID-19. White House trade adviser Peter Navarro has been appointed to enforce the act.
  7. 🏰 1 Disney thing: Both Disney World and Disneyland theme parks in the U.S. are closed until further notice.
  8. What should I do? Answers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancing.
  9. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it.

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