(You're reading all posts by Jonathan Zschau) Jonathan Zschau was introduced to Apple at the age of 5 when his family bought its first computer, an Apple IIGS, in 1986. He has owned and used Macs almost exclusively ever since. He is an attorney from Boston, Massachusetts, where he focuses on litigation technology. He writes about consumer-protection issues related to Apple products and is the author of Buying and Owning a Mac: Secrets Apple Doesn't Want You to Know.
About Jonathan Zschau
There are now over 500,000 iPhone apps and 170,000 iPad apps available on Apple’s App Store and that number will surely continue to increase as new app developers enter the foray. In March 2012 Apple’s App Store surpassed its 25 billionth download. If you’re not already buying apps regularly, you probably will be soon. Here are some tips that may help you save some money on your App Store purchases.
Earlier this year Apple announced iTunes U, making it clear that Apple intends to make the iPad ubiquitous in academia. The iPad is truly coming into its own as a legitimate alternative to the PC. For students, this means that the iPad is quickly becoming a powerful learning tool, which is good for a lot more than reading.
I sat down with a Boston-based PhD student who, for the past year, has been using her iPad nearly exclusively for her studies. Here are the core peripherals and apps that she recommends in order to supercharge your iPad for use in the academic setting.
Buying a new iPad? Be sure that you’re well aware Apple has made some changes to AppleCare. This past year Apple changed the iPhone AppleCare option to AppleCare+ and it has now done the same for the iPad. Unsurprisingly, AppleCare+ offers you more protection for your new iPad than was previously available under standard AppleCare plans, but there are a few differences, which everyone should take a moment to understand.
Part II of this two-article series focuses on battery usage. Battery usage refers to how long you can use your Mac off of a single charge cycle. In addition to proper battery care, there are numerous ways to improve or supplement battery usage. When there’s no power outlet available, consider the following two options. First, optimize your Mac for maximum battery life. Second, supplement your Mac’s battery with a secondary power source.
The new iPad requires a lot more power than the iPad 2. How much more power? So much that despite an astounding 70% increase in the new iPad’s battery capacity (42.5 watt-hour up from 25 watt-hour), it will still run for the same amount of time as the iPad 2 on a single charge. The new iPad is a power-hungry beast and, therefore, knowing a thing or two about its battery is more important than ever.
If you’ve owned any type of portable device for an extended period of time you’ve probably noticed that its battery gets worse with time. You may have wondered what you could do to maximize your device’s battery life or even suspected that a short-lived battery was defective, but didn’t know what to do about it. Maybe you’re interested in extending the usage time you get out of a single charge or need even more battery power than your Mac’s internal battery has to offer, but don’t know what to look for in an external battery pack. This is a two-part guide on the battery basics everyone needs to know. It’s aim is to give you useful information about the batteries used by all of your Macs – including the new iPad.
The release of OS X Mountain Lion is still months away, but it’s never too early to save some money.
OS X Mountain Lion is going to be the first major OS X update sold and distributed exclusively through the App Store. This means that if you want to upgrade you must purchase and download it from the App Store. For savvy buyers out there, this might be a good opportunity to get a discount on your upgrade by taking advantage of special deals on iTunes Gift Cards.
Still shopping around for last minute gifts for your friends or family? Consider these three books authored by Cult of Mac writers, which may be just what you’re looking for.
On Friday U.S. Judge Lucy Koh denied Apple’s motion for a preliminary injunction against Samsung, which, if it had been granted, would have halted the sale of the Infuse 4G, Droid Charge, and Galaxy S 4G phones and Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet in the United States pending the conclusion of the lawsuit. Because the case isn’t scheduled to go to trial until July 30, 2012 this would have been both a strategic and symbolic victory for Apple in its ongoing legal battles relating to alleged infringers of Apple’s intellectual property rights or, as Apple has called them, “copyists.” For now, we will have to wait and see what else Apple’s legal army will come up with in this dispute with Samsung. Barring further developments, Samsung can keep selling its Infuse 4G, Droid Charge, and Galaxy S 4G phones and Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet in the United States at least until the case is tried next summer.
For those of you who haven’t been following this lawsuit, Apple doesn’t like the fact that some of Samsung’s products happen to look a lot like its own products and is suing to stop Samsung from allegedly ripping off its intellectual property (product design and packaging, design patents, and trademarks) and to collect damages for any harm Apple has already suffered. This ruling marks the most recent development in this saga and the redacted 65-page opinion offers some interesting insight into the case.
A good friend of mine recently bought a new iPhone 4S from her local Apple Store. When presented with her new iPhone, the Apple Store salesperson tried to sell her on AppleCare+. It was a hard sell; in her opinion, the Apple Store salesperson went about it in all of the wrong ways. She’s a savvy consumer, reads Cult of Mac and other tech blogs, and has even read my new book. She did her own research before she bought the iPhone. She understood the differences between AppleCare and AppleCare+. She weighed risks of accidental damage against the price and limitations of AppleCare+, and decided the extra protection wasn’t for her.
She passed on AppleCare+, but believes that she might have been swayed if she hadn’t done her homework. She made a choice and, whether or not it turns out to be the right one, she was the one to make it. But not everyone is going to take the time to evaluate the pros and cons of AppleCare+ and will be confronted with this question at the time of purchase. Might you or someone you know fall victim to a hard sell on AppleCare+?
I had previously written the following short article in response to a reader’s question about their MagSafe power adapter. Although the recent class action settlement has seemingly resolved this particular issue, some readers might find it helpful to look at this article as a case study, which may offer some points relevant to other product defects.
“Hi Cult of Mac,
About four months ago I purchased a used 2007 MacBook Pro online from a seller on eBay. Two weeks ago I noticed the charger was discolored and looked like it had started to melt! I can now see the wires inside the cable near the base of where it connects to my MacBook Pro. I don’t think I caused any damage to the cable. I never purchased AppleCare. What should I do?”