Jony Ive: Thinking different is easy

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Apple's Jony Ive at least year's Vanity Fair Summit.
Jony Ive sheds (a bit of) light on the new MacBook Pro's creation story.
Photo: Vanity Fair/YouTube

A new interview with Jony Ive sheds light on his team’s thought process as they created the new MacBook Pro and its innovative Touch Bar.

Ive addresses the history of the Touch Bar project, touches on his rationale for ruling out a touchscreen Mac, and explains why thinking different is easy — but doing so is only a small part of the innovation battle.

How the MacBook Pro’s Magic Toolbar can cast a spell on the world

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MacBook Pro
The Magic Toolbar will change depending on the app being used.
Illustration: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Apple faces a serious challenge when it rolls out the rumored OLED “Magic Toolbar” on new MacBook Pros tomorrow: It must convince the world that the new adaptive touchpad is more than a gimmick.

Offering customizable function keys that work in different ways depending on which apps are running, the Magic Toolbar could make the new MacBook Pro one of Apple’s most exciting laptops in years.

But to be more than a gimmick, the Magic Toolbar needs to improve the way we interact with our Macs, not simply add another confusing control element to the laptops. The Magic Toolbar needs to make it easier to perform tasks that we now do using keyboard shortcuts or on-screen toolbars. If it can’t do that, the Magic Toolbar will go down in the history books as a failure.

Luckily, there’s one simple step Apple can take to ensure that the Magic Toolbar becomes a success.

What the Xiaomi Mi Mix could tell us about the next iPhone

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Mi-Max-display
Mi Mix is easily the prettiest smartphone to date.
Photo: Xiaomi

Xiaomi’s incredible new Mi Mix smartphone brings a jaw-dropping “edgeless” display, a ceramic design and groundbreaking new technologies.

Unveiled today, it isn’t just the prettiest smartphone of 2016; it’s the prettiest smartphone to date.

The Mi Mix is not an iPhone clone — something Xiaomi has become famous for — but it could tell us a lot about Apple’s next handset.

All the changes Apple made in iOS 10 beta 2

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apple music app
There's a lot to love in the new iOS 10 beta.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Apple’s second beta for iOS 10 is jam-packed with new features and changes to go along with the big batch of bug fixes.

More than 50 changes have been discovered by developers, affecting everything from Apple Music to widgets. A lot of the changes are very minor UI tweaks that would probably go unnoticed by many users, but Apple has also added some huge additions to the Home button, Messages, Notification Center and more.

Here’s what’s new in iOS 10 beta 2:

Today in Apple history: Power Mac G5 goes on sale

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Do you remember the Power Mac G5?
Photo: Apple

Thursday23Sometimes affectionately called the “cheese grater,” the original Power Mac G5 first went on sale on June 23, 2003 — offering what was then Apple’s fastest-ever machine and the world’s first 64-bit personal computer.

Check out the video of Steve Jobs introducing the computer 13 years ago today.

iOS 10 hands on: Everything that’s new in Apple Music and Apple News

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News and Music ios10
Apple News and Apple Music get much-needed redesigns in iOS 10.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

iOS 10 brings much-needed design overhauls for the Apple Music and Apple News apps.

The big iOS update, which is currently in beta but should hit iPhones and iPads this fall, brings huge changes to the Apple Music UI as well as minor improvements to navigation in the music app. To see all the changes in action, watch the Cult of Mac video below.

How watchOS 3 could fix Apple Watch and end ‘wrist rage’

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Does your Apple Watch give you wrist-rage?
Does your Apple Watch give you wrist rage? If so, watchOS 3 might help.
Photo: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

My biggest gripe with my Apple Watch is not the sluggish hardware, the lack of GPS nor the dependance on my iPhone. These are all problems to be sure. But it is the bad user interface design that often drives me so mad that my force-taps turn into force-thumps of frustration.

With an update to the Apple Watch operating system expected at the Worldwide Developers Conference next month, here’s my top 10 list of interface improvements I’d like to see in the upcoming watchOS 3. These essential changes would spare my wrist from future incidents of wrist rage.

Jony Ive: Apple has a ‘lot to learn’ about wearables

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A starry-eyed, slurry-tongued Jony Ive raves about the Apple Watch in a new parody video. Photo: Gizmodo
Jony Ive is excited about seeing where the Apple Watch goes in future.
Photo: Gizmodo

Jony Ive suggests that Apple is bound to make some missteps as it continues to explore wearable devices, and offers some vague, tantalizing hints about Apple’s plans for the Apple Watch in a new interview.

“Regardless of whether we declare an interest in fashion or not, we are making products that are more and more personal, products that you wear and you wear every day,” he told Business of Fashion ahead of the Apple-sponsored Met Gala. “We’ve not done that before and we’ve got a lot to learn.”