Today in Apple history: iPad mini arrives

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The iPad mini made a big splash for such a tiny device.
The iPad mini made a big splash for such a tiny device.
Photo: Apple

November 2: Today in Apple history: iPad mini launch brings smaller size and price tag November 2, 2012: The first-generation iPad mini goes on sale, shrinking both the size and the price tag of Apple’s groundbreaking tablet computer.

With a reduced screen size of 7.9 inches – instead of the then-standard 9.7 inches – the iPad mini is the fifth iPad to be released by Apple. Critics hail Apple’s most affordable iPad ever, although some people complain about its lack of a Retina display.

AirPods Pro 2 with USB-C are now an amazing 24% off [Still available!]

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AirPods Pro with USB-C port and charging cable
The new version of AirPods Pro 2 leaves Lightning behind in favor of USB-C. And it's on sale!
Photo: Apple

A crazy good deal on the new AirPods Pro 2 with USB-C case lets you save $60 off the retail price. And this despite the wireless earbuds being on the market for just over a month.

Apple’s new top-of-the-line wireless earbuds take advantage of all the latest new bells and whistles in iOS 17. Plus, they bring additional new features besides the port change, including additional dust resistance and the promise of high-res audio when paired with Apple Vision Pro.

What to watch for in Apple’s earning report

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Wall Street thinks Apple is just limping along
Be ready for Apple to reveal on Thursday how much it took in during the July-through-September period.
Photo: Anna Nekrashevich/Pexels

When Apple reports the results of its most recent financial quarter later on Thursday, look for Mac and iPad to be a drag on the company’s revenue. Still, analysts are upbeat about the company’s earnings.

Investors will also be watching closely, especially considering AAPL shares are down 9% since the company last reported financial results in August.

Mark Wahlberg action-comedy The Family Plan hits Apple TV+ in December

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Mark Wahlberg and Michelle Monaghan star in The Family Plan.
Image: Apple TV+

In The Family Plan, Mark Wahlberg plays a father with a small secret: he used to be an assassin. His past comes back to haunt him — and his family — in a film that debuts on Apple TV+ in mid December.

With that premise, it could be a gripping drama, but the flick will be an action-comedy instead.

Expect to wait longer for high-end M3 MacBook Pro and iMac

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Late-2023 MacBook Pro with M3
Whether you can get your hands on the latest MacBook Pro with M3 chip on launch day depends on which configuration you want.
Photo: Apple

Preorder some heavily loaded configurations of the newly announced M3 MacBook Pro models and you’ll be waiting until later in November to receive them. But Apple still has plenty of other configurations ready to go on launch day.

The same is true for the new M3-powered iMac — load it up and the result is a somewhat longer wait.

Next-gen Apple Watch could offer limited blood pressure monitoring

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AI and ECG readings from Apple Watch could be crucial to detecting heart problems.
Apple Watch X might, at long last, get blood pressure monitoring.
Photo: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

The 2024 edition of Apple Watch might finally include a feature that been a bit of a holy grail for the wearable: blood pressure monitoring. But a new report says the feature will be limited at first.

It’ll supposedly be a highlight of a device that might be called Watch X.

Apple Arcade getting 8 more fun new games in 2023

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Apple Arcade games
There are plenty of upcoming games and recent additions to Apple Arcade.
Image: Apple

Disney Dreamlight Valley Arcade Edition, Football Manager 2024 Touch, Sonic Dream Team and Puzzle & Dragons Story are among the eight games on the way to Apple Arcade in November and December. They’ll join the 200+ already on the service.

In addition, more than 50 of the already available games will get content updates.

How to get the latest AirTag firmware update

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How to get the latest AirTag firmware update
Updating AirTag firmware is easy. But it requires patience.
Photo: Cult of Mac

A firmware update out for AirTag has begun gradually rolling out. You’ll probably want it, but it turns out that updating the software for Apple’s item tracker is both easy and hard. You don’t have to jump through hoops, but neither do you have much control.

Here’s what you need to do.

Apple M3, M3 Pro and M3 Max boost Mac performance up to 50%

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Apple M3 chip family
Apple unveiled the M3 and didn't make Mac users wait for the M3 Pro and M3 Max.
Image: Apple

Apple broke with tradition and unveiled the M3, M3 Pro and M3 Max processors all at once on Monday, rather than stringing the releases out. The performance cores in the new chips are up to 30% faster than M1, and the efficiency cores are up to 50% faster.

“Apple silicon has completely redefined the Mac experience. Every aspect of its architecture is designed for performance and power efficiency,” said Johny Srouji, Apple’s SVP of Hardware Technologies. “With 3-nanometer technology, a next-generation GPU architecture, a higher-performance CPU, faster Neural Engine, and support for even more unified memory, M3, M3 Pro, and M3 Max are the most advanced chips ever built for a personal computer.”

The Enfield Poltergeist documentary brings eerie Halloween chills [Apple TV+ review]

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"The Enfield Poltergeist" is an eerie way to spend a Halloween-ish evening.
Image: Apple

TV+ Review The Apple TV+ documentary The Enfield Poltergeist goes in-depth on “the most famous poltergeist haunting in history.” The events inspired The Conjuring 2 and are creepy Halloween fun, though unlikely to convince anyone that ghosts are real.

I suspended my disbelief for a few hours and enjoyed the show for what it is.

Full version of Resident Evil Village launches for iPhone 15 Pro and iPad

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'Resident Evil Village' on iPhone
You don't need a console to play Resident Evil Village, just an iPhone 15 Pro or a recent high-end or mid-range iPad.
Photo: Capcom

iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max owners can start playing the console-quality version of Resident Evil Village. The survival horror game hit the App Store just in time for Halloween.

It can also be played on iPads with high-end processors.

All the Macs to expect at Apple’s M3-focused ‘Scary Fast’ October event

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Apple's events page for the Halloween event contains a massive hint.
The Apple M3 series of processors will be scary fast.
Photo: Apple

UPDATE: The “Scary Fast” event has come and gone, and it brought the fresh MacBook Pro models and the iMac — all powered with a new M3 processor — that leaks predicted. Check out Cult of Mac‘s full coverage for more details.


Apple fans are getting a treat this Halloween: an event that’ll bring the M3 processor and a range of new Macs to run it.

Here’s everything we’re expecting at Monday’s event, including an iMac and MacBooks, with some accessories thrown in.

These 7 spooky Apple Arcade games dish out Halloween treats

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These 7 spooky Apple Arcade games dish out Halloween treats
Here are the best games with the unquiet dead available on Apple Arcade for your Halloween enjoyment.
Graphic: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

Halloween is almost here, making this a great weekend to play some spooky games. Apple Arcade has a nice selection of these to help you enjoy the creepy season.

Here are the best options in Apple’s gaming service to find ghosts, ghouls and goblins.

iOS 17.1 boosts battery life of most older iPhones

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iPhone 13 charging test
iPhone 13 runs longer on iOS 17.1 than other recent versions.
Photo: ChargerLAB

The most-recent iOS update increases the battery life of several older iPhone models, according to tests on a range of devices. And it’s a jump for almost every model tested over the first iOS 17 version.

But there’s still room for improvement.

NexDock transforms iPhone 15 into clamshell notebook

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NexDock transforms iPhone 15 into clamshell notebook
Add a 13-inch touchscreen, keyboard and trackpad to your iPhone with NexDock.
Photo: Nex

NexDock and the infiniteX2P app are designed to turn an iPhone 15 into a laptop. Connect Apple’s latest to the touchscreen/keyboard/mouse and run the app to start multitasking on a 13-inch display.

The USB-C port in the iPhone 15 makes this combination possible.

Apple already begins testing iOS 17.2 with new Journal app

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Apple Journal App press images creating new entry and list of past entries
Journal can help you create personalized entries, with content from multiple apps, to help you preserve life’s memories.
Screenshots: Apple

Apple seeded the first beta of iOS 17.2 to developers on Thursday. The major new feature seems to be the AI-enhanced Journal app that Apple previously promised. macOS 14.2 beta 1, iPadOS 17.2 beta 1, watchOS 10.2 beta 1 and tvOS 17.2 beta 1 are also available to devs.

These come just a day after the previous versions of all these operating system went out to the public.

Adding one feature would make AirTag way more useful

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AirTag
We want to be warned if our AirTag starts to move away on its own.
Photo: Mark Chan/Unsplash

Apple sells millions of AirTags because people want to track the location of their stuff. But the tracker does only part of the job — it only warns the user when their iPhone moves too far away from the tag. Making it also set off an alarm when the tag moves away while the user is sitting still would be a welcome improvement.

This could be done with a changes to the Find My application. No new hardware is required.

Your iPhone needs this luxurious leather wallet case [Review] ★★★★

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Mujjo Full Leather Wallet Case with MagSafe★★★★
You don't need a separate wallet with this handsome leather iPhone case from Mujjo.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

Apple dropped its leather iPhone cases, but the Mujjo Full Leather Wallet Case with MagSafe is a brilliant alternative. It protects your valuable handset while also providing an easy way to carry credit cards and drivers license. Plus, it looks gorgeous while doing so.

I carried my iPhone 15 Plus this case on holiday, to restaurants … everywhere I went for weeks. Here’s why I love this case for my iPhone 15 Plus, despite a notable drawback.

AirPods 4 could deliver active noise cancellation

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Apple needs to take the frustration out of AirPods firmware updates
With ANC, AirPods 4 might be a significant jump up from its predecessor.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

AirPods 4 will be the first in Apple’s budget line of wireless earbuds with active noise cancellation when they launch in 2024, according to high-profile tipster. And there’ll be other improvements, too.

In addition, a new version of AirPods Max over-the-ears headphones are also supposedly on the docket for 2024.

Basketball fans can now jump into the action in NBA 2K24 Arcade Edition

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NBA 2K24 Arcade Edition is for serious fans.
NBA 2K24 Arcade Edition is a serious game for serious fans.
Screenshot: 2K Games/Apple Arcade

NBA 2K24 Arcade Edition, the latest addition to the long-running esports games franchise, launched a bit earlier than expected. The feature-packed basketball game is now on Apple Arcade for iPhone, iPad, Mac and Apple TV.

This is the definitive basketball game for Apple devices, and each new version adds even more features.

Amazon moves away from passwords to passkeys instead

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Passkeys let you use Face ID or Touch ID to sign into websites.
You can use Face ID or Touch ID to sign into Amazon via a passkey.
Image: Amazon

Add Amazon to the list of tech giants throwing their weight behind passkeys. With the new system, customers can shop online or in Amazon’s apps without passwords. Passkeys are considered safer and easier.

Apple, Google and others have already started their own move away from passwords.