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The Week in iPad Cases: Mophie's first iPad case keeps your iPad juiced while adding storage

Sat, 2015-04-25 08:38
Pack it up, pack it in

This week’s roundup of new iPad cases brings you a handy backpack for your electronics and their accessories, a useful keyboard/cover from Zagg, a catchy protective solution from Griffin, and much more.

Case Logic

Whether you’re biking to work or taking the subway, the Berkeley Plus (all iPad models; $60) is a functional backpack with plenty of room for your laptop, iPad, and all your accessories.

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Missing the point: Analyzing a thing you haven't used

Sat, 2015-04-25 05:00

Just a thought, but if you're going to write opinion pieces on the Apple Watch when you haven't tried one yet, you might want to familiarize yourself with the writing of people who actually have.

Or not, whatever. Writing for the Forbes contributor network and unaccredited lawnmower maintenance academy, Erik Kain wonders "Will The Apple Watch Push The Boundaries Of Good Manners?" (Tip o' the antlers to ghibby!)

More than the Forbes contributor network already has? Not sure that's possible. It's an interesting thought experiment in a "Could God make a boulder so big even he couldn't move it?" kind of way.

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FAQ: Everything you need to know about the Apple Watch

Fri, 2015-04-24 14:34

The first wave of Apple Watches were delivered on April 24, but if you were waiting to order a Sport, steel, or Edition until you could try it on in person or read the early reviews, you’ll have to wait until June to get your hands on a Watch.

But that’s OK, because we know so much more about Apple Watch now than we did when it debuted last September. How long does the battery last? How does Apple Pay work? Is it really better than a fitness tracker?

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The Week in iOS Apps: Laughs and inspiration

Fri, 2015-04-24 14:29
Laughs and inspiration

This week’s roundup includes apps to inspire you, help you reach your goals, and even have a chuckle or two along the way.

Clear

Somewhere in your past is a tweet that will someday come back to haunt you. Clear for iOS connects to your social media accounts, hunts down and flags questionable posts, and lets you immediately delete them. Going for a job interview? Running for president? You might want this app.

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Apple Watch products that will make people hate you even more

Fri, 2015-04-24 13:53

People hate you. They see that Apple Watch on your wrist and they hate you because they don’t have one. But don’t let the haters stop you from proudly wearing your Apple Watch. In fact, you should go one step further. Pimp that Watch like it’s nobody’s business. All you need are the right accessories, and they’re right here.

Brikk Lux Watch Omni

Brikk Lux Watch Omni, for the understated gentleman

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Yep, that's the Android mascot peeing on Apple in Google Maps

Fri, 2015-04-24 13:06
Now THAT apple will definitely keep doctors away.

My first hour with Apple Watch: Unboxing, pairing, and personalizing this strange new device

Fri, 2015-04-24 12:28

It arrived earlier than I expected, a narrow rectangular box with nothing particularly special or Apple-like about it. But that nondescript brown package belied the brilliant white box inside, which contained an equally bright 38mm Apple Watch Sport with silver aluminum face and blindingly white band.

I gingerly lifted the Watch out of the box, much like I’ve done with new iPhones, not wanting to scuff or smudge the device in any way. There’s really nothing like a gleaming new gadget that hasn’t been yet been marred by dirty hands. (Yeah, my Watch face is already covered in fingerprints.)

Apple is offering personal setup appointments online and in-store for people who want a little extra assistance, but setting up your own Apple Watch is even more simple than getting started with an iPhone.

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Apple Watch teardown findings: 205 mAh battery, upgrades unlikely

Fri, 2015-04-24 10:07

The Apple Watch is surprisingly easy to repair in some ways, but don’t expect to upgrade the internals over time.

That’s the conclusion from iFixit’s Apple Watch teardown. While dismantling Apple’s first smartwatch didn’t turn up any major surprises, it did clarify a few details that Apple isn’t so eager to discuss on its own.

For instance, the 38mm Apple Watch has a 205 mAh battery, which is much smaller than the 300 mAh batteries inside Motorola’s Moto 360 and Samsung’s Gear S smartwatches. Still, Apple is managing to squeeze 18 hours of typical runtime from the Watch, partly because the AMOLED display remains off when it’s not in use, and only lights up individual pixels as needed. (Apple says the 42 mm Watch should last a bit longer, but the exact battery size is still a mystery.)

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Sky Guide for Apple Watch brings space to your wrist

Fri, 2015-04-24 10:00

Every 90 minutes and some change, the International Space Station (ISS) completes a circuit of the Earth. Two Seattle developers want you to remember the wonder of humanity’s continuous presence in space for nearly 15 years, and raise your wrist and wave digitally.

Chris Laurel and Nick Risinger of Fifth Star Labs are among the early adopters of WatchKit, and support all the possible interactions in their first Watch-ready release. Sky Guide was one of the first apps Apple advertised as supporting Apple Watch, and the two started work on special features the day WatchKit was released.

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Comcast's $45 billion Time Warner Cable acquisition is officially dead

Fri, 2015-04-24 07:25

Comcast is officially walking away from plans to acquire Time Warner Cable, after regulators signaled their displeasure with the deal.

“Today, we move on,” Comcast Chairman and CEO Brian Roberts said in a statement. “Of course, we would have liked to bring our great products to new cities, but we structured this deal so that if the government didn’t agree, we could walk away.”

The deal almost seemed like a foregone conclusion when Comcast announced its $45.2 billion Time Warner Cable acquisition plan last year. As Bloomberg notes, the cable giant spends more money on lobbying in Washington than any other company, and dumped $17 million into its lobbying efforts in 2014 alone.

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Ask the iTunes Guy: Manage your iTunes music library

Fri, 2015-04-24 06:49

This week, I look at a few questions about managing an iTunes music library, dealing with liner notes, album artwork in WAV files, and correcting capitalization in song titles. I also suggest a way to download music from the iTunes Store with an old Mac.

DIY digital booklets

Q: I’ve been ripping my CD collection and I’d like to add liner notes to my iTunes library. I’m happy to scan the CD inserts but what’s the best way to add these files so I can easily access them?

PDF Adder does the tagging you need so your liner notes stay grouped with your music files.

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The Apple Watch is out and more goodies are coming our way…

Fri, 2015-04-24 04:48
The Apple Watch is out and more goodies are coming our way…

Whether or not you will be wearing a brand new Apple Watch today, you can feast your eyes with this incredible variety of accessories, stands, band adapters, cases, screen protectors, and other creative solutions for your wrist.

Adappt

Developed by four Italian students, the Adappt ($9 to $3,450) is a sturdy, fashionable adapter that lets you use wristbands other than the Apple’s original models.

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Staff Picks: 8 Apple Watch apps we can't wait to use

Fri, 2015-04-24 04:45

The Apple Watch’s killer app is, well, its apps—nearly 3,000 available on launch day. While we don’t want to clutter our watch home screens with apps we’ll never use, the Macworld staff did find some gems waiting to work with the go-to apps we’re already using on our phones every single day. These are the apps we can’t wait to use on our wrists.

One note about screenshots: Apple Watch apps typically have dark backgrounds that blend seamlessly into the black bezel around the Apple Watch’s screen. That means developers can place text and graphics right up to the edge of the screen, instead of leaving padding (since the bezel acts as the padding). If a screenshot looks oddly designed seen on its own here, chances are it’ll look just fine in context on the watch itself.

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5 outside-the-box health apps for Apple Watch that go beyond heart rate

Fri, 2015-04-24 04:15

Apple Watch is a health-monitoring machine. The device can count your steps, measure your heart rate, and tap your wrist to remind you to stand up, all on its own. But third-party app developers aim to take the Watch to the next level with unique apps that help you take action to improve your health, straight from your wrist.

WebMD

You won’t be able to use WebMD’s Watch app to frantically look up symptoms and diagnose your mysterious ailments, and frankly, it’s for the best. The online medical encyclopedia’s Watch app is designed to nudge you with medication reminders when it’s time to dose up.

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Shop different: What's a new product launch without lines around the Apple Store?

Fri, 2015-04-24 04:04

There was a time when Apple launches didn’t light up headlines around the web. When the original iPod was released back in November of 2001, for example, the only people lining up were at Apple Stores in Littleton, Colorado, and Newport Beach, California—and most of them weren’t looking to fork over $399 for an mp3 player. They just wanted one of the free grand-opening T-shirts.

But ever since the iPhone, Apple launches have become major events, prompting long, snaking lines, week-long camp-outs, and blocked-out vacation days for Apple Store employees. Lines and crowds have become so commonplace that Apple routinely sets up rope stanchions and orders cases of water to keep things orderly.

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How to get your Apple Watch tracking number from UPS My Choice

Thu, 2015-04-23 13:41

I got my tracking number! But not from Apple, like Caitlin did this morning. If you are eagerly mashing refresh on your email account and your “my orders” page at the Apple Online Store, I sympathize—I probably refreshed both about a squillion times today. Caitlin Jealousy was at an all-time high.

This tweet from Adam Christianson gave me hope, however.

Just checked UPS and looks like my Apple Watch will be here Friday! W00t! No word from Apple yet. pic.twitter.com/Im8XRQrcN0

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Apple's Watch App Store launches with 3,000 apps ahead of first Watch deliveries

Thu, 2015-04-23 13:17

The first Apple Watches arrive on doorsteps this Friday, and after people pair their new devices to their iPhones, they’re gonna go right for the apps. Apple just launched the brand new Apple Watch App Store, accessible through the Apple Watch app included in iOS 8.2.

The iPhone's App Store will now tell you when an app has a Watch version.

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Hands on: Phorm takes the awkwardness out of thumb-typing on an iPad mini

Thu, 2015-04-23 13:00

The Phorm case, from Tactus, adds a tactile layer to the software keyboard when you’re holding your iPad mini in portrait mode and engage the switch on the back—supposedly being able to “feel” the keys will make it easier to type.

Yeah, right, I thought.

I admit it, I was skeptical. I pictured bulging bubbles right on top of each letter, having to mash those bubbles with my thumbs, and seeing my iPad mini’s battery life suffer, because of course a case with an on/off switch requires power, right?

Wrong. I was wrong about all of it.

First of all, Phorm uses no power. The switch on the back is purely mechanical. The case, which completely encloses your iPad mini without adding too much bulk or weight, has a thin, double-layered membrane over the screen, and a tiny reservoir built in to the side of the case that holds a small amount of liquid. The switch on the back is completely mechanical—when you push it from one side to the other, the liquid is physically forced out of the reservoir into tiny channels between the two membrane layers, where it settles into place above each key on a standard software keyboard.

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The Week in iPhone Cases: Missing your keyboard? Want more power? How about a wallet?

Thu, 2015-04-23 12:05
Missing your keyboard? Want more power? How about a wallet?

This week’s roundup of new iPhone cases features an interesting alternative to your onscreen keyboard from Brando, extra battery power from Lenmar, and cool wallet solutions from T8 and Terrapin. While you are at it, don’t forget to check out Miniot’s gorgeous natural wood accessory!

Brando

If you miss the feel of a real keyboard, the Eponymous Keyboard (iPhone 6 Plus; $48) combines a built-in ultrathin Bluetooh keyboard and a transparent back case in one package.

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Apple Watch is a day away, but the Apple Watch User Guide is now online

Thu, 2015-04-23 11:45

If you’re lucky, your new Apple Watch is coming to your doorstep tomorrow. So what are you going to do while you wait for the delivery? You can read the Apple Watch User Guide, which Apple has posted on its website.

The guide covers everything you need to know about your new Apple Watch, from how to set it up to how to properly dispose and recycle it (not that you’d want to do that, at least not until a new version is released).

You can learn how to perform Digital Touch, customize your watch face, set up Apple Pay, configure the activity tracker, and a lot more. There’s also information on how to properly clean the bands. If you bought an Apple Watch Edition, the user guide tells you how to find the hallmarks and fineness marks.

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