Photos is out, and we’ve got the lowdown. Cover Design: Stephen Smith
It’s time for another weekly dose of all the great stuff from our intrepid news hounds and reporters within the digital confines of Cult of Mac Magazine.
Buster has the lowdown on eight of the hot new features in Apple’s upcoming Photos for Mac, and he also takes a good long look at the mysterious vans owned by Apple that have been spotted around the San Francisco area. If you need to protect your precious new iPhone, Stephen drops a video spotlight on five cases you’ll want to consider for your fancy Apple smartphone. Rob digs deep into a new digital comic — companion to the Midnight Star video game — and how the award-winning team brings the game world to life. Jim drops in on a hip retro gaming shop in Portland, too, coming back with some stunning pictures of this old boys (and girls!) club.
If you’re going to use a case, it should look good. Photo: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac
You’ve got a brand-spanking new iPhone 6, and boy is it beautiful. You love looking at it and holding its tender, curved edges, but you’re terrified that you’ll drop it and scratch it up. Or worse: shatter the screen into a million tiny pieces.
You need a case that’s protective, functional, and most importantly, good looking. Something minimal and preferably made of quality material. OtterBoxes are great if you’re worried about your iPhone getting run over by a tractor, but most of us want something sleeker for everyday use.
The good news is that there’s already a handful of sexy iPhone 6 and 6 Plus cases worth checking out. We’ve collected the very best:
The AL13 iPhone case comes in an eye-catching electric blue and six other colors. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac
I’m torn these days between wanting a functional wallet-style case for my iPhone and something a bit more minimalist. I tend to switch cases as I need them because I haven’t found a one-case-fits-all solution that works for me.
The minimalist new AL13 metallic bumper case for iPhone 5 or iPhone 5s is quite a classy little addition to your important iOS device, combining good protection with looks that invite stares. It’s got all the great stuff of its ultrathin predecessor, but it’s also easier to put on and doesn’t have any issues with dropped calls due to signal loss.
It’s a bear to get off, though, so if you like to change your iPhone case as often as you change your mood, you’ll probably be a bit frustrated.
Loop’s Straitjacket case will keep your iPhone crazy-safe. Photos: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac
Loop Attachment is famous for making some of the best silicone cases you can buy for iOS devices, but the company’s latest effort for the iPhone 5/5s is a little different. It looks a lot like Loop’s Mummy lineup and carries over some of those cases’ greatest strengths, but it’s made from a mixture of rigid polycarbonate and soft polyurethane.
It’s called the Straitjacket, and it aims to provide your iPhone with excellent impact protection without completely covering its aluminum chassis and iconic Apple logo. It doubles as a credit card holder; provides full access to all buttons, ports and switches; and comes in a number of pretty colors.
What’s more, it’s the best Loop case yet for the iPhone.
The wrist strap is the best part of the Snappgrip. Photos: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac
The Snappgrip is a fantastic idea, with not-too-bad hardware to back it up. It’s an accessory grip for your iPhone that adds a Bluetooth shutter release, zoom buttons and control dial to the phone’s camera, as well as a wrist strap and a handy handgrip.
But in practice, you’ll be better off with the iPhone’s own volume switches if you want a hardware shutter release. Which is a shame, as I was super-excited to try the Snappgrip out.
Sometimes you just want an iPhone case that protects that beloved all-encompassing communications and gaming device from the vagaries of your crazy life, for sure.
Voyager by Pelican ProGear Category: iPhone Cases Works With: iPhone 5/5s Price: $50
There are numerous options for those of us who tend to the “drop our gear constantly” school of gadget ownership, but most of them end up being incredibly bulky and difficult to use. Some even provide a screen guard that is less than touchable, as it were.
The Voyager series for the iPhone 5 and 5s, however, aims to provide similar drop, screen, and debris protection as many of these other cases, all for a more affordable price.
I took the case out for a spin to see if it could, in fact, protect my iPhone 5 without trouble, and whether the added bulk is worth the trade off in protection.
When going out in the evening, I don’t need all my shopping loyalty cards, my library card, or stacks of other such plastic ephemera mucking up the smooth line of my pockets, so I tend to opt for a less is more approach: my debit card, my ID, and a couple of dollars in cash.
FabFolio for iPhone 5S/5 by PureGear Category: iPhone Cases Works With: iPhone 5, iPhone 5S Price: $29.99
I’ve always wanted a way to carry these few things together with my iPhone, foregoing wallet altogether for a unified experience, but have always found other wallet cases too bulky or restricting.
PureGear’s FabFolio, however, reaches that delicate balance between useful, good-looking, and thin. It’s definitely worth a spin in your pocket if you’re looking for something to fill a similar need.
The Atherton is — in name and in design — the iPhone case that 1970s- and 1980s-era U.K. football (soccer) managers would have used. Famous for their sheepskin coats, these hard-talking, hard-smoking sports trainers wouldn’t hold truck with lily-livered modern materials like nylon or — gasp — fleece. Nope. The only covering fit for a testosterone-filled football coach was the skin of a dead sheep.
According to the fine folks at Kubxlab, there are three kinds of wood in this world: Light Wood, Dark Wood, and Brown Wood. And – as luck would have it – all three are available as materials for Kubxlab’s Ultra Thin iPhone Case.