How Apple tricks our brains into accepting high prices

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This genius psychological tactic makes Apple's high prices seem totally reasonable.
This genius psychological tactic makes Apple's high prices seem totally reasonable.
Photo: meo/Pexels CC

During the WWDC 2019 keynote, most of Apple’s latest creations drew enthusiastic applause, with one notable exception. The price of Apple’s new Pro Display XDR elicited a somewhat cooler response. But considering just how expensive the monitor is, the fact that it got any applause at all was pretty remarkable.

This is not the first time Apple has had to convince us to pony up for an eye-watering sticker price. Cupertino pulls from a well-established playbook for its keynotes, often employing behavioral science techniques to help soften the blow. (To our brains at least, if not to our wallets).

Why SwiftUI might be the biggest thing to come out of WWDC

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Why SwiftUI is actually a big deal.
SwiftUI is actually a pretty big deal.
Photo: Apple

WWDC 2019 bug Apple lavished attention on all its platforms at WWDC this year. We even got a first look at the all-new Mac Pro. But another announcement, which didn’t grab so many headlines, may prove to be the most important thing to come out of this year’s developer conference: SwiftUI.

SwiftUI promises to fundamentally change the way developers create apps for Apple products. And you don’t need to be a techie to appreciate why it’s such a big deal.

iOS 13 wish list: Giving health & fitness a workout

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Will Apple move workouts to iCloud so you can browse them on any device?
Will Apple move workouts to iCloud so you can browse them on any device?
Photo: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

WWDC is less than a week away and there are already plenty of rumors doing the rounds on what new features Apple has in store for iOS and watchOS. Dark mode, a refreshed Reminders app and a new Find My app all look set to make an appearance.

But will Apple also be giving its operating systems a shot in the arm to improve their health and fitness as well? Here’s my top-ten wish list of announcements I’m hoping to hear during next week’s keynote. These features will get my pulse racing so fast it’ll trigger a heart rate warning on my Apple Watch.

How to build muscle with Apple Watch

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Are you correctly fuelling your muscle growth?
That's actually not how you wear an Apple Watch
Photo: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

If you diligently close your Activity Rings every day in the hope of getting ripped like The Rock, you are going about it all the wrong way.

Apple’s Activity app focuses on cardio conditioning and burning calories. Which is great for losing weight, but irrelevant if you want to build muscle.

In this post, we’ll take a look at what really makes muscles grow and how you can use your Apple Watch to make it happen.

Get in shape for your beach vacay with Apple Watch

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Time to rock that speedo
Time to rock that Speedo
Photo: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

Summer is almost upon us.* If you’ve been training hard all winter to look awesome in a Speedo on the beach, then you can totally skip this post.

Still here? That’s cool. Because in this post we’ll look at five awesome ways your Apple Watch can help give your body a quick tune-up before you hit the beach this summer.

What is your Apple Watch trying to tell you about your health?

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These days Apple Watch detects far more than just your heart rate
Understanding these Apple Watch stats is key to unlocking its healthy potential.
Photo: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

If you’ve been wearing an Apple Watch for a while now, chances are you have built up a huge amount of data related to your health. But do you know what it all means? What exactly is that wrist-mounted technological marvel trying to tell you?

All those different stats Apple Watch saves to the Health app can be a little overwhelming. But if you know how to interpret them, they provide a surprisingly wide variety of insights into your health. Like how fit you are, how much stress you are under and whether you are at risk of heart disease.

It’s worth taking the time to understand what your Apple Watch is telling you. It can help you improve your wellbeing — and it might even save your life.

Master the mysteries of ‘Other’ workouts on Apple Watch

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Apple Watch’s Other Workouts are a whole other ballgame
Apple Watch’s Other Workouts are a whole other ballgame
Photo: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

Everyone knows you can do running, cycling and swimming workouts with your Apple Watch. But did you know you also can log sports like football, golf and boxing? There’s even support for pastimes as diverse as fishing, horse riding and fencing.

These workout types are not easy to find, however. Apple hides them in the “Other” workouts menu. With a bit of hunting around you’ll discover 60 additional options there to choose from.

So, if you’re bored with your regular workout and fancy trying something more exotic, why not give these Other workouts a try? Here’s how to find and use them.

Will Chris Hemsworth’s new fitness app get you ripped like Thor? [Review]

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Centr is a new fitness app by Avengers star Chris Hemsworth
Centr is a new fitness app by Avengers star Chris Hemsworth.
Photo: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

I’m a big Chris Hemsworth fan. The guy is walking workout inspiration. I spend hours at the gym hoping that one day I’ll achieve Thor-style arms. But so far, no luck.

That’s why Centr, Hemsworth’s new fitness app, immediately caught my interest. I was intrigued to learn the secrets of the training regimen that keeps him looking like a superhero. So I eagerly downloaded the app, hoping it would help transform my puny arms into guns worthy of Thor.

10 hidden Activity app features that will take your fitness to the next level

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Discover the secrets of the Apple Activity app.
Discover the secrets of the Activity app.
Photo illustration: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

At first glance, the iPhone Activity app seems pretty simple. It’s basically just a calendar to keep track of your daily Activity Rings. But if you know where to look, you’ll find a surprising number of pro features buried beneath that slick, simple interface.

So check out our top 10 iPhone Activity app tips and discover some indispensable stats that will help take your fitness to the next level.

6 Apple Watch apps for an awesome six-pack

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Want a more defined core? Your Apple Watch can help.
Want a more defined core? Your Apple Watch can help.
Photo: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

For many guys wanting to get in shape, a chiseled six-pack is the ultimate goal. But achieving that iconic washboard look is not easy. Especially as you get older.

Fortunately, your Apple Watch can help you along the way to achieving a tighter core. Apple’s Health app, Activity app and even the Breathe app have a role to play. Here’s how to get a six-pack with a little help from your iPhone and Apple Watch.