Pricey Lightning headphones will make you care less about headphone jacks [Reviews]

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Audeze EL-8 headphones
With a Lightning connector and an $800 price tag, the EL-8 headphones from Audeze are very Apple.
Photo: Lewis Wallace/Cult of Mac

They don’t call them “headphones” for nothing.

Slipping on a pair of quality closed-back headphones puts you in a rarefied headspace where sound envelopes you completely and nothing matters but the music. Just close your eyes, cue up the perfect tracks to suit your mood, and drift away.

The Audeze EL-8 Titanium headphones, which use a Lightning connector to plug into your Apple device, will take you to that special place. But you’ll pay a steep price for your trip to aural bliss.

Ultimate Ears speakers’ get voice upgrade that lets you ‘say it to play it’

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With the UE Boom 2, Ultimate Ears makes a great speaker even better.
A firmware update lets you bark song requests at your Boom 2 speaker. But you'll have to push a button first.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

A firmware update to Ultimate Ears’ Bluetooth speakers lets you use simple voice commands to make song requests.

After you install the over-the-air update, just tap the Bluetooth button on the top of your paired Boom 2 or Megaboom speaker, then say something like, “Play ‘Iron Man’ by Black Sabbath.” Soon the track will play as if by magic.

Don’t skip this crucial step if you want your app to be awesome [ProTip]

Bill Atkinson portrait MacPaint
Bill Atkinson, the creator of MacPaint, has crucial advice for coders.
Photo: Jim DeVona/Flickr CC

Pro_Tip_Cult_of_Mac SAN FRANCISCO — If you want to make a truly killer app, here’s a crucial part of the creative process you shouldn’t overlook: Give your “finished” software to someone, ask them to do something with it, and then shut the hell up.

Observe their interaction with the app, and you’ll learn what you’re doing right — and what you’re doing wrong.

That priceless piece of advice comes from Bill Atkinson, an Apple veteran who coded some of the greatest Mac software of all time, including HyperCard and MacPaint.

iOS 10 hands on: Your iPhone will never be the same

iOS 10 hands on
What new features will wow you the most in iOS 10?
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

With a host of new features, many of which go more than just skin deep, iOS 10 will bring loads of new functionality to iPhones and iPads.

We got the developer beta up and running to get a look at all the new iOS 10 features in action, and caught it all on video to share with you. Get a glimpse of the iPhone’s future in our iOS hands-on video.

At WWDC 2016, Apple strengthens bonds between increasingly powerful platforms

Apple lays out the future of its evolving ecosystem at WWDC 2016.
Apple lays out the future of its evolving ecosystem at WWDC 2016.
Photo: Apple

With absolutely no new hardware to show off, Apple focused on software — the glue that binds together its increasingly powerful and interconnected platforms — during the Worldwide Developers Conference kick-off event Monday.

“Our North Star has always been about improving people’s lives by creating great products that change the world,” said Apple CEO Tim Cook, addressing thousands of developers in San Francisco’s Bill Graham Civic Auditorium. “Today for the very first time, we are going to talk to you about four Apple platforms. Each of these platforms is category-defining and world-changing.”