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About John Brownlee

John Brownlee John Brownlee is a Contributing Editor. He has also written for Wired, Playboy, Boing Boing, Popular Mechanics, VentureBeat, and Gizmodo. He lives in Boston with his wife and two parakeets. You can follow him here on Twitter.

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How to fix Wi-Fi problems in iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite

Download iOS 8.0.1 now. Photo: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac.

These unofficial methods will ease Wi-Fi problems in iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite. Photo: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac

iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite users have been plagued by a host of Wi-Fi problems since Apple’s two latest operating systems were released. Apple has released updates for both, but to no avail: People keep suffering through Wi-Fi drops, seemingly at random.

What the heck’s going on? According to one developer, the issue is caused by the custom technology that Apple uses for AirDrop and AirPlay on both iOS 8 and OS X. And there’s a way to fix it!

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Apple is getting ready to ditch Google as search engine for iOS and OS X

Google-Apple

Apple has spent a great deal of time distancing itself from Google ever since its erstwhile partner launched Android back in 2008. Google Maps and YouTube haven’t been bundled as default apps on iPhones or iPads for years, and rumors keep swirling that Apple will kill its partnership with Google as a default search engine in Safari on both iOS and OS X.

But now? Now it looks like Apple might finally pull the trigger, ending all of its Google partnerships for good.

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This simple new circuit could double iPhone data speeds

A simple new circuit could double iPhone data speeds. Photo: Apple

A simple new circuit could double iPhone data speeds. Photo: Apple

Your iPhone can send data pretty fast over a wireless network, but it’s hobbled in at least one regard: the wireless antenna design can’t send data while receiving data at the same time. That means that the data speeds of your iPhone are potentially cut in half, just by the nature of wireless technology. But a new circuit could allow future iPhones to double their data speeds without making any other changes.

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How to bring Kinect-like gesture control to your Apple TV

Kinect-like gesture control comes to the Apple TV. Photo: Onecue

Kinect-like gesture control comes to the Apple TV. Photo: Onecue

We know that Apple is interested in giving the Apple TV Kinect-like motion sensing abilities — they bought the 3D motion tracking company behind the tech last year, after all — but who knows when, if ever, it will actually come to living rooms.

If you want to start waving your way through your Apple TV’s interface now, though, meet the Onecue. It’s a cool little gadget that grafts Kinect-like functionality into your home entertainment system.

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FCC: T-Mobile can no longer lie about throttled data cap speeds

What, me worry? Photo: T-Mobile

What, me worry? Photo: T-Mobile

T-Mobile has tried to make a reputation for itself lately as the most honest wireless carrier around… but the FCC just had to rap the so-called Uncarrier’s knuckles for lying to its customers about how fast their data connections were after they passed their monthly data caps.

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How to get the best deal on an Apple TV this Black Friday

Photo: Apple

Photo: Apple

blackfriday logoGreat Apple deals can be hard to come by on Black Friday, but here’s a nice exception: If you’re looking to get your hands on an Apple TV, Staples is having a killer deal, selling Apple’s set-top streaming media box for just $79, a $20 savings..

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Why iCloud is Apple’s worst product

What is happening with iCloud within Apple? Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

What is happening with iCloud within Apple? Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

iCloud was hailed by Tim Cook back in 2012 as “not just a product. It’s a strategy for the next decade.” Yet these days, iCloud is something of a mess: Not only has it not gained significant features since launch, but a slate of very public hacks have made it a rare black mark on Apple’s security record.

What the heck happened? According to a new report, iCloud isn’t living up to its potential because, organizationally, it’s an orphan within Apple.

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Apple’s newest iPhone 6 ads celebrate gaming and Continuity

Which hands are Jimmy Fallon's vs. Justin Timberlake's? Screenshot: Cult of Mac

Which hands are Jimmy Fallon’s vs. Justin Timberlake’s? Screenshot: Cult of Mac

With Black Friday just a few days away, Apple has just debuted two new television ads for the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus: one focused on how great the iPhone is at gaming, and the other showing off iOS 8’s impressive new Continuity features.

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Apple celebrates the National Book Awards with huge iBooks sale

Screen Shot 2014-11-21 at 8.49.52 AM

Photo: Cult of Mac

Last night, Ursula K. Leguin, the author of seminal fantasy and science-fiction books like The Left Hand of Darkess and the Earthsea series, won a National Book Award for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters.

During her speech, she made an impassioned defense of fantasy books, saying we needed such literature because “hard times are coming” when novels that can transport the mind will have actual social value.

It sounds like Apple might have been listening, because they are currently promoting the winners of the National Book Award, past and present, on the iBooks Store.

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Got an iPhone 4s or iPad 2? Why you should never upgrade from iOS 7

iOS 8.1.1 is still a bad choice for iPhone 4s owners. Photo: Ars Technica

iOS 8.1.1 is still a bad choice for iPhone 4s owners. Photo: Ars Technica

When Apple first released iOS 8 to the general public, more than a few people with older devices such as the iPhone 4S, iPad 2, and iPad mini noticed that it slowed their devices down to a crawl.

When Apple released iOS 8.1.1, they promised that the update would fix some of the speed issues that iOS 8 had on older devices.

So how’d it work out? iOS 8.1.1 is sometimes an improvement. Sometimes, but not always. And even then, it’s not a huge leap.

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