Logitech Slim Combo gives iPad Pro a comfy keyboard [Review]

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The Logitech Slim Combo iPad Pro keyboard case puts a rugged cover on your precious tablet. But it's not for everyone.
The Slim Combo puts a rugged cover on your precious iPad Pro. But it's not for everyone.
Photo: Lyle Kahney/Cult of Mac

If you use the new 10.5-inch iPad Pro, you know it’s got the power to replace a MacBook for some tasks (especially if you’re running iOS 11, which gives your iPad superpowers).

The Logitech Slim Combo case, with a clamshell design and a complete keyboard, makes your iPad Pro seem even more like a laptop than ever. It’s not all super-portable bliss, though. A couple of strange design choices make you painfully aware that the Slim Combo isn’t an Apple product.

This iPhone case doubles as a lint roller

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The Stitched iPhone case lint roller
The Stitched iPhone case helps you look your best in an unusual way.
Photo: Stitched Products

Here’s one for the crazy cat ladies: The Stitched iPhone case works like a lint roller to remove hair, dust and other undesirable detritus from your clothes.

We’ve seen a lot of iPhone cases over the years, but never one like this!

Luxurious leather makes this Apple Watch band feel buttery-smooth [Review]

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clessant
The delicate accent stitching looks great, but there's more to this Apple Watch band than meets the eye. Clessant uses prized Barenia leather from the Haas Tannery in France.
Photo: Courtesy of Clessant

Best List: Clessant Black Barenia Apple Watch Band

When it comes to fashion, it’s hard to beat basic black. However, sometimes you want a little something extra — a design that adds subtle interest without going over the top. The Clessant Black Barenia Apple Watch band does the trick, thanks to fine off-white stitching that looks almost like racing stripes.

Let Apple take you on an iPhone X guided tour

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Guided tour of iPhone X on YouTube
Are you ready for a guided tour of iPhone X?
Photo: Apple

Upgrading to iPhone X means facing a learning curve. Since Apple’s futuristic phone forgoes the familiar home button, iPhone X owners must learn a bunch of gestures.

Apple wants to make the transition as smooth as possible, so the company just uploaded a video to ease the pain of any iPhone X owner shellshocked by all that bright, shiny newness.

Strapple’s mock-croc Apple Watch band gives you a taste of the exotic [Review]

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Strapple Crocodilus Apple Watch strap
Strapple Crocodilus Apple Watch strap
Photo: Lyle Kahney/Cult of Mac

Best List: Crocodilus Apple Watch band by Strapple

This crocodile Apple Watch strap is a total crock. But in a good way! Made of Italian calfskin leather but stamped to look like crocodile skin, this beefy Apple Watch band looks exotic but costs a fraction of what a real reptile hide would set you back.

Why Apple short-circuited the media machine for iPhone X reviews

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Apple's new strategy for iPhone X reviews blew up the system.
Apple's new strategy for iPhone X reviews blew up the system.
Photo: Gerd Altmann/Pixabay CC

Anybody who thinks Apple can’t innovate should look in awe at the fecal hurricane whipped up by the company’s unorthodox iPhone X marketing plan.

By giving popular YouTubers early access to the next-gen iPhone, and allowing them to “scoop” the old-school journalists traditionally granted such preferential treatment, Cupertino upended the typical review cycle.

Apple apparently bruised a few fragile egos in the process. Frankly, it’s hilarious watching the ensuing media meltdown.

Leather MacBook Pro sleeve wraps your laptop in luxury [Review]

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The Woolnut sleeve is pure leather luxury for your MacBook.
The Woolnut sleeve is pure leather luxury for your MacBook.
Photo: Lyle Kahney/Cult of Mac

You know that completely satisfied feeling you get when you first lay your hands on a truly luxurious product? Maybe you remember that special moment when you peeled off the plastic covering from a pristine Apple product. Or when you first slid behind the wheel of an outrageous European sports car (with the requisite leather interior).

Nobody necessarily needs that level of luxury. But sometimes you want to treat yourself (or a friend) to the very best. I totally got that lavish feeling when I first saw a Woolnut leather sleeve for MacBook Pro with Touch Bar.

These leather Apple Watch bands are handmade in America

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E3 supply co.
If you are looking for a distinctive, handmade (and made in America) Apple Watch band, check out the E3 Supply Co. line in the Cult of Mac Watch Store.
Photo: E3 Supply Co.

Whether they are rebuilding vintage motorcycles or crafting Apple Watch straps, the folks at E3 Supply Co. do everything by hand. It’s not that they can’t afford fancy robots to get the job done — the small team of three prefers to do things this way.

Whether working from their shop in Brooklyn, New York, or from the mini leather workshop in the back of their customized 1977 Toyota Chinook, they do things the old-fashioned way. And now Cult of Mac is thrilled to offer E3 Supply’s handcrafted leather Apple Watch bands in our Watch Store.

Blast and Megablast bring Alexa to UE’s portable speakers

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With Alexa baked in, UE's new Blast speaker will be right at home in the kitchen.
With Alexa baked in, UE's new Blast speaker will be right at home in the kitchen.
Photo: Ultimate Ears

SAN FRANCISCO — Ultimate Ears’ punchy portable speakers just got smart. The new Blast and Megablast speakers bring built-in support for Alexa, Amazon’s voice-operated smart assistant.

Bringing the always-listening, voice-operated helper to a battery-powered speaker proved “nontrivial,” said Benjamin Falk, principal software product manager at UE, during a demo of the new speakers.

Google Pixel Buds bring wireless audio — and instant translation

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Google Pixel Buds
Pixel Buds bring Google's AI smarts to your ears.
Photo: Google

The most impressive feature of Google’s new Pixel Buds might not be their audio quality. As demonstrated during the Pixel 2 event today, they work as a real-time translation tool when combined with one of Google’s new phones.

“With Pixel Buds, I can use real-time Google Translate to have a natural conversation in 40 languages,” Google hardware product manager Juston Payne said during the event. “We’re letting you connect with the world around you in a more natural way, by rethinking how a headphone should work, connecting it to cloud-based machine learning and giving you access with the touch of a finger.”