How to add quick keyboard shortcuts for emojis on Mac and iOS

By

emoji text replacements
Adding shortcuts for your favorite Emoji is easy.
Photo: Cult of Mac

If you use emojis, the iOS keyboard is fantastic. It suggests emojis for you as you type words, and you can insert them into your messages with a tap. But what about the Mac? How can you add emojis with the keyboard on the desktop? And how can you force iOS to remember shortcuts for your favorite emoji on the iPhone and iPad? The answer to both is Text Replacement, which is built into both macOS and iOS.

How to use external storage with Files app on iPad or iPhone

By

FileBrowser toshiba flashair
You can even browse wireless SD cards from Files app.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

Did you ever hold your iPhone in one hand, and a USB hard drive in the other, and look back and forth between them, muttering “Why, oh why?” Well, today we have good news for you. You still can’t hook them together with a wire, but with one app you can browse all kinds of external storage devices right from iOS 11’s new Files app.

Hard drive hooked up to your Time Capsule? Check. USB storage connected to your fancy router? Check. Home network storage devices that work great but have really hideous iOS apps to access them? Check. With this tip, you can put any of these in your Files app’s sidebar using the excellent FileBrowser app.

Apple’s ‘fast’ iPhone 8 charger isn’t as quick as you think

By

charger
The MacBook's USB-C charger won't charge your iPhone much faster.
Photo: Maurizio Pesce/Flickr CC

The iPhones 8 and X both support Apple’s “fast-charging” option, which has been available on the iPad pro since the first 13-inch model. Fast charging lets you use a powerful USB-C charger, along with a USB-C-to-Lightning cable, to charge your iPhone quicker than you can with the standard iPhone or iPad chargers. But is it worth the $75 that those accessories will cost? Is charging really so much faster? According to tests run by software engineer and startup investor Dan Loewenherz, the answer is no.

Never lose your parked car again with Siri and Maps

By

parking
Never lose your car again.
Photo: Pomodoro Entertainment/Flickr CC

If your car has a Bluetooth stereo, then you can set your iPhone to remember exactly where you parked, and mark the spot in your iPhone’s Maps app. Once enabled, you’ll never lose your car again. The process is automatic: Whenever you leave your car, the marker is placed. Let’s see how it works.

Amazon is about to ruin its best Kindle model

By

new Kindle oasis
That hot unibody is 50% heavier than the old model.
Photo: Amazon

The new Kindle Oasis was just launched, and it looks amazing. It has the same super-slim form as the current Oasis, along with the asymmetric shape and hardware page-change buttons, only now it also has a bigger 7-inch screen, better battery life, and it is waterproof. It’s even cheaper than the current model.

Luckily, this new Oasis doesn’t go on sale until the end of October, so you still have a few weeks to buy the old one while you still can.

How to use Spark’s amazing advanced email features

By

spark header
Spark works everywhere.
Photo: Readdle

Apple’s own Mail app is pretty amazing in iOS 11 and macOS High Sierra, and is more than good enough for most people. But Cult of Mac readers aren’t “most people,” and that’s where Readdle’s Spark comes in. If you’re looking for more features, like scheduled sending, automatic follow-ups, and integrations with third-party apps and services, then Spark is the place to look. Today we’ll look at how to use these great new features.

This dongle fixes the jackless iPhone 7 for good

By

amazon lightning iphone 7 dongle
Amazon is getting in on the iPhone dongle game.
Photo: Amazon

Apple’s obsession with lopping ports off its devices has spawned a whole industry of dangling dongles. Every time Apple removes hole to slim down an iPhone or a MacBook, or to make space for a bigger battery, somebody else fills that gap with an external widget that does the exact same thing, only messier and more expensive.

The latest in this dongle parade is the AmazonBasics Lightning to 3.5mm Headphone Jack Audio Adapter with Remote and Lightning Charging Port, a product whose name tells you almost everything you need to know.

How to find the hidden printing options in Preview app

By

Printing a PDF isn't what it used to be.
Printing a PDF isn't what it used to be.
Photo: Thad Zajdowicz/Flickr CC

Today’s tip is a simple one which might help some of you from going nuts trying to find hidden pricing options on your Mac. Did you ever try to print a PDF in Safari? Usually when you click on a PDF link in the browser, Safari opens it up right there. This seems great if you want to quickly print the PDF, but you should stop right there. Safari’s printing sheet, the one that opens up when you hit Command-P to print, is a cut down version of the regular one.

Even worse, the missing features are exactly the ones you’ll want to use if printing a PDF — especially if you’re printing tickets, or boarding passes.

5 ways to quickly switch apps on iPad with iOS 11

By

iOS 11 iPad Pro
The iPad is insanely flexible in iOS 11.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

In iOS 11, there are four ways to switch apps on the iPad. Five, if you count the old-school way: hitting the home button to return to the home screen, and tapping an icon to launch a different app. Some of these methods have been around a while, and have changed drastically in iOS 11. Others are brand new, and exclusive to the iPad. Today, we’re going to look at them all.