How to make sure your iPhone fireworks photos go off with a bang

These tips will help you take better fireworks photos.
These tips will help you take better fireworks photos.
Photo: Richard Dongses/Flickr CC

Last year’s Fourth of July fireworks made you say ooh and ahh, but when you look at your iPhone photos from that night, the sound you make is more of an ugh.

Don’t blame Siri or some engineer in Cupertino. The iPhone camera, as mighty as it is, can’t do all the thinking for you, especially in challenging lighting conditions like a fireworks display. But with a little thought and preparation, you can make this holiday one worth reliving on your iPhone camera roll.

Below are some simple tips to make your fireworks photos sizzle.

How to make your own hilarious memes with Aviary

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We hope your memes are even funnier.
Photo-editing app Aviary is a meme-making machine.
Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

Have you ever wanted to make your own memes? You know, the funny pictures with the bold text on the top and bottom that all the kids are going crazy for these days?

With Photo Editor by Aviary, you can do just that, plus add stickers, frames, and even do some pretty great photo editing right in the same app.

Here’s how to make your own hilarious memes with Aviary (though we don’t guarantee your memes will actually be funny — that’s up to you).

Bluetooth LED makes iPhone camera even flashier [Reviews]

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iblazr-wireless-bluetooth-flash - 1 (2)
This portable Bluetooth flash is perfect for those who thrive on nightlife.
Photo: George Tinari/Cult of Mac

As far as smartphone cameras have come with improved low-light shooting and intelligent LED flash, there will always be some situations in which you could use just a bit more light. This is especially true for photographers who want to make smart adjustments for their photos, or people who tend to do most of their socializing at night. So it’s worth shining a light on iblazr 2, a fantastic Bluetooth LED flash.

This successor to Concepter’s original iblazr isn’t just your ordinary wireless LED flash. It’s equipped with tons of features that let me fine-tune the way I want my photo to come out. The most important feature for me is that it works with the native camera apps on iOS and Android. In fact, according to Concepter’s website, it’s the only wireless LED flash that does.

LifePrint makes your boring iPhone photos come to life

Robert Macauley shows off LifePrint, his app for bringing all your pictures to life.
Robert Macauley shows off LifePrint, his printer and app for bringing your pictures to life.
Photo: Traci Dauphin/Cult of Mac

SAN FRANCISCO — The idea for Robert Macauley’s “photographs for the new millennium” sprang from a camera that is totally 20th century.

“What if you could create a Polaroid experience for your phone?” Macauley said as he showed off a prototype of LifePrint, his pint-size printer that works with an augmented-reality app. LifePrint lets you print out Polaroid-size images that, when viewed through the app, can come to life on your smartphone screen.

Instagram takes on Apple’s Live Photos with Boomerang

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Boomerang is just like Live Photos.
Boomerang is just like Live Photos.
Photo: Instagram

Instagram’s new app Boomerang lets users create one-second videos of everyday moments, then share them to Instagram, Facebook or Twitter.

The new app is a lot like the new Live Photos feature Apple introduced on the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus. Boomerang takes a burst of five photos, stitches them together into a mini-video, then plays the clip in forward and then reverse — you know, just like a boomerang!

Here’s how it works: