Boost your house’s IQ with these smart home accessories [Deals]


From smart bulbs to HD home monitoring cameras and more, these accessories will make any home smarter.
Photo: Cult of Mac Deals

You can’t buy smarts, except when it comes to your smart house. Right now at the Cult of Mac Store, we’ve got a bunch of accessories that are sure to make your abode more like the smart home of your dreams.

From an HD home monitoring camera to a Bluetooth power outlet, smart LED lightbulbs and a dual-stream Bluetooth audio transmitter, you can teach any old house some new tricks with this gear. Everything’s available at a significant discount, too!

Apple’s Sydney store cleared due to possible bomb threat


The George Street Apple store was evacuated.
Photo: Jon Bragg/Flickr CC

Apple’s flagship retail store in Sydney, Australia, was temporarily evacuated earlier today as part of a “police operation.”

A sniffer dog was spotted entering the building, while the three-story venue was cleared of customers by police, who also diverted local traffic. According to one customer who was evacuated, store employees were talking about a bomb threat. She noted that police were “very firm in telling people to leave immediately.”

Samsung chief is arrested on bribery, embezzlement and perjury charges


Galaxy S7 is pretty, powerful, and packing huge improvements.
The man arrested is the likely heir to the Samsung empire.
Photo: Samsung

The de-facto head of Samsung, Vice Chairman Lee Jae-yong, was arrested earlier today on alleged corruption charges.

According to the special prosecutor’s office, Lee — who is the heir apparent to the Samsung Group and only son of Samsung’s incapacitated chairman — is being held on charges including bribery, embezzlement, hiding assets overseas and perjury.

Apple will build iPhones in India regardless of perks


iPhone SE 7
Apple is keen to grow its market share in India.
Photo: Sam Mills/Cult of Mac

Apple is set to begin manufacturing iPhones in India whether or not it has received agreement from the government over proposed tax relief incentives, a new report claims.

The first iPhones to be assembled in India are said to be 300,000 – 400,000 iPhone SE models, which will be manufactured at a plant owned by Winstron in Karnataka, Bengaluru.

Today in Apple history: Apple introduces ‘world’s fastest’ PowerBook


Screen Shot 2017-02-17 at 10.42.37
Do you remember the PowerBook 3400?
Photo: Apple

Feb17February 17, 1997: Apple launches the PowerBook 3400, a laptop the company claims is the fastest portable computer in the world.

After a rough few years for the PowerBook, this model throws down the gauntlet to rivals, packing a PowerPC 603e processor capable of running at speeds up to 240 MHz, depending on which configuration you buy.

While it is quickly overtaken by speedier Apple laptops, at the time the PowerBook 3400 is able to match the speed of some impressive desktop Macs.

Beats X are better than AirPods in almost every way [Reviews]


Beats earphones
The Beats X are worth listening to.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

I’ve never been a fan of Beats headphones. Whenever I’ve given them a go, I’ve found the sound quality to be less than stellar, with far too much bass. So when Apple unveiled Beats X wireless headphones alongside the AirPods last fall, the weird-looking white ones grabbed my attention.

Now that I’ve had a chance to try them both, it’s clear I got that backward. I give you all the details on Beats X versus AirPods in my Beats X review below.

Apple touts Portrait Mode as an antidote to boring profile pics


Portrait Mode is a game changer.
Portrait Mode is a game changer.
Photo: Apple

Are your social media profile pictures starting to look old and stale? Then Apple has some killer advice for you: buy the iPhone 7 Plus!

Apple just dropped two new video ads for the iPhone 7 Plus that tout the device’s dual-lens camera. With the new Portrait Mode feature, Apple showcases how you can take your boring profile pictures to the next level.

Check it out:

Apple tops list of most admired companies for 10th year running


Fortune likes a company with a fortune. Who would have thought it?
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Apple once again tops Fortune’s annual list of the world’s admired companies.

Other tech companies in the top 10 include Amazon (No. 2), Alphabet (No. 6), Facebook (No. 9) and Microsoft (No. 10). The company that’s nowhere in sight? Samsung, which is coming off a disastrous year in which its Note 7 smartphones exploded and had to be recalled.

For Apple, on the other hand, this marks the 10th year in a row at the top of the list. Do you think Tim Cook gets bored of winning at some point?