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Apple removes Java applet plugin from OS X, continuing push for plugin-free web

Further pushing toward the idea of a plugin-free internet, Apple has issued an update to Java for OS X that removes the Java applet plugin. Attempting to use a Java applet through any OS X web browser will now prompt users to download the latest version directly from Java maker Oracle.
This is not the first time Apple has stopped shipping a specific browser plugin with their computers. With OS X Lion, users discovered that their Macs no longer came with Adobe’s oft-derided Flash Player plugin due to its instability and security issues. Apple has long held browser plugins in contempt, especially following the success of iOS, which hasn’t supported browser plugins at all in the past six years.
Just about every Mac Trojan/vulnerability over recent months and years has been related to outdated Java code. This move should close off those attack vectors.

iFixit Tears Down the New Seventh-Generation iPod Nano

The teardown experts at iFixit have taken apart the new Seventh-Generation iPod Nano, noting how much work Apple's engineers put into making the device as thin as possible. The teardown notes that the battery has a rating of 0.8Wh, more than twice the rating of the prior generation Nano.

The battery, Lightning connector and volume controls are all soldered directly to the logic board. The button cable and headphone jack are attached as well. The site does note that the LCD and digitizer glass are not fused together, allowing replacement of either component individually.

iFixit found components from Apple, Broadcom (Bluetooth + FM Radio), NXP Semiconductors, Toshiba (NAND flash), and Texas Instruments (touchscreen controller) inside the Nano.

Overall, iFixit found the new iPod nano to be fairly difficult to repair as many components are soldered directly to the logic board. The battery appears to be particularly difficult to replace. The revelation is not a surprise, as Apple does not intend its mobile products to be user-serviceable and the company's efforts to push the limits of design and size reduction have led it to sacrifice accessibility.

iFixit has also taken apart the Fifth-Generation iPod Touch, as well as the iPhone 5.

Rumors and Speculation of November 2 'iPad Mini' Launch Building

Earlier today, Geeky Gadgets reported that it has received word from a retailer in the United Kingdom indicating that the "iPad mini" will be launching on November 2 in at least the United States and UK, with pre-orders reportedly set to begin on October 26. 9to5Mac also issued a Tweet today stating that it has "heard whispers" of a November 2 launch.

As we noted earlier this week, November 2 is the most obvious date for a launch given Apple's past history and the October 23 date for its media event, making it difficult to assess which rumors might be based on actual information and which might simply be speculation based on the most likely scenario.

Apple typically releases its new mobile devices on Fridays, generally making them available roughly a week and a half after their introduction. This pattern was seen with the iPhone 5 last month and with the third-generation iPad earlier this year, among other past releases. Pre-orders, if they are offered, are a bit less consistent, with iPhone 5 pre-orders going live one week before launch while pre-orders for the third-generation iPad began immediately following Apple's media event nine days before launch.

One wrinkle that could derail Apple's usual schedule is the possibility that the iPad mini may be considered a new product line, and these products such as the original iPhone and full-size iPad had longer gaps between introduction and launch. We do believe, however, that the iPad mini is likely to be a rather straightforward expansion of Apple's existing product line, meaning that a November 2 launch is indeed likely.