Lego Star Wars Battles explodes onto Apple Arcade

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Grab your blaster: ‘Lego Star Wars Battles‘ shoots toward Apple Arcade
“Lego Star Wars Battles” lets Chewbacca fight Boba Fett. Or have an Ewok take on a Tusken Raider.

The newest addition to Apple Arcade really puts the “war” in Star Wars. Look for a mix of one-on-one real-time combat and tower defense with classic characters in Lego Star Wars Battles.

The game debuted Friday, and is playable on a wide variety of Apple devices.

Sci-fi epic Foundation premieres a day early on Apple TV+

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Sci-fi epic ‘Foundation’ premieres a day early on Apple TV+
The wait for Apple TV+’s Foundation is almost over.
Photo: Apple TV+

You won’t have to wait until Friday for the much-anticipated debut of Foundation on Apple TV+. The first episode of this adaptation of Isaac Asimov’s sci-fi classic will premiere2 on Apple’s streaming service three hours early, so Americans can watch it Thursday night.

The same goes for everything debuting on Apple TV+, including the latest episode of Ted Lasso.

iOS 12.5.5 update blocks Pegasus spyware from older iPhones

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iOS 12.5.5 update blocks Pegasus spyware from older iPhones
Install iOS 12.5.5 on your older iPhone to protect it from the Pegasus spyware.
Photo: Андрей Сидоренко/Pixabay/Cult of Mac

iPhone models that can’t install iOS 14 or iOS 15 can still get protection from the infamous Pegasus spyware thanks to iOS 12.5.5. Apple released this update Thursday for devices as old as the iPhone 5s to close a security hole in active use by hackers.

The same update can also be installed on older iPad and iPod touch models.

EU proposes forcing iPhone to switch to USB-C

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Anker PowerLine II USB-C Cable with Lightning Connector
If the European Commission has its way, the iPhone Lightning port will be replaced by a USB-C one.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

The European Commission put forward legislation Thursday that would make USB-C the standard port for all smartphones and tablets. The move seems aimed directly at Apple and the Lightning port used in iPhone and the budget iPad. But it also would affect super-cheap Android handsets that still use micro-USB.

The proposal also would unbundle the sale of chargers from the sale of electronic devices.

Add a trio of blazing-fast ports to your Mac with new Plugable Thunderbolt 4 hub

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Add trio of blazing-fast ports to your Mac with new Plugable Thunderbolt 4 hub
Plugable’s just-launched Thunderbolt 4 hub makes your Mac more useful by adding accessories that require very fast connections.
Photo: Plugable

The new Plugable TBT4-HUB3C hub turns a single Thunderbolt 4 port into three of them, expanding the number of high-speed accessories that can be connected to a Mac or iPad Pro. That includes big displays and large-capacity drives.

And Plugable also launched new 1-meter and 2-meter Thunderbolt cables Thursday.

Bring on some less dystopian Apple TV+ sci-fi

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Explosion-packed Foundation trailer will get fans excited for Apple TV+ series
“Foundation” looks amazing. And apocalyptic.
Photo: Apple TV+

Apple TV+ is shooting for the stars with two new sci-fi series and a film this autumn. The trailers for Foundation, Invasion and Finch all look amazing. And dark. The descriptions for all of them include either “dystopian” or “apocalypse” or both.

Could we get some science fiction that’s a little more upbeat from Apple’s streaming service?

Read this before installing the iOS 15.1 beta if you plan to get an iPhone 13 ASAP

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Don’t install the iOS 15.1 beta if you plan to get an iPhone 13 ASAP
Putting the iOS 15.1 beta on your current handset will complicate getting an iPhone 13.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

Apple seeded iOS 15.1 to developers on Tuesday and gave the general public access on Wednesday. But you should stay away from it if you intend to get an iPhone 13 as soon as it’s released. It’s likely the new handset will launch running an earlier version of iOS and that’ll cause you difficulties.

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Epic Games v. Apple is just getting started
If you thought the war between Apple and epic Games was over, think again.
Graphic: Epic Games/Cult of Mac

Apple intensifies its war on leakers

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When will the Apple leaks stop?
Tim Cook says Apple is “doing everything in our power” to find iPhone leakers.
Photo: Apple

Apple CEO Tim Cook is fed up with employees who leak details of upcoming devices to the press. He sent out a company-wide memo that said, “people who leak confidential information do not belong here.”

The memo was quickly leaked to the press.

PSA: iPhone 13 series is incompatible with most earlier cases

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PSA: iPhone 13 series is incompatible with most earlier cases
Note the difference in size of the camera hump on the iPhone 12 (on left) and the iPhone 13 (on right).
Photo: Apple

While the iPhone 13 has drawn some criticism for being a minor update, improvements to the cameras mean that none of the new handsets are compatible with tight-fitting cases designed for earlier models.

This is not unusual. But Apple’s 2021 models look so much like their iPhone 12 equivalents that it might be easy to think the exteriors are identical when they are not.