Apple Arcade makes a power play [Cult of Mac Magazine 396]

By

Apple Arcade looks ready to be a major player.
Apple Arcade looks ready to be a major player.
Cover: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

Adding dozens of new games is great and all, but embracing the past might be the smartest move Apple Arcade made this month.

Now Apple’s subscription gaming service includes two new categories — Timeless Classics and App Store Greats — that showcase just how fantastically fun mobile gaming can be.

The expansion is a real boon for casual gamers who might be more into sudoku than an arty indie game they’ve never heard of. And it makes Apple Arcade’s $4.99-a-month subscription look like an unbeatable deal.

If you haven’t tried Apple Arcade, now might be the time to take the plunge. And if you haven’t checked out Apple One subscription bundles — all of which include Apple Arcade — you might be missing out some real savings.

Read all about Apple Arcade’s power play (and get the rest of the week’s top Apple news) in Cult of Mac Magazine. Download the free app to read on your iOS device, or get the links below.

Give your drab Home app a spiffy remodel with HomePaper

By

HomePaper for HomeKit lets you customize the Home app.
HomePaper lets you quickly give the boring Home app a fresh coat of paint.
Image: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac

New app HomePaper for HomeKit lets you quickly customize the look of Apple’s notoriously bland-looking Home app — with zero hassles.

With the app, you simply select a photo from your iPhone or iPad camera or take a new one. Then you can quickly adjust the color(s) and make your own customized wallpaper for the Home app. There’s no fussing around with a complicated image editor or painstaking resizing required.

Here’s how to use HomePaper, which runs on iPhone and iPad, to give your Home app the remodel it deserves.

45 ways Apple put a ding in the universe [Cult of Mac Magazine 395]

By

Yes, Apple changed the world.
Yes, Apple changed the world.
Cover: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

In some ways, it’s hard to remember what the world looked like before Apple arrived in 1976. The upstart company made computing consumer-friendly, fashionable and, ultimately, ubiquitous.

In just four and a half decades, Apple made a surprisingly big impact on the tech scene and the world at large.

As we look back on the company’s 45th birthday this week, we take stock of 45 ways Apple put a ding in the universe. Hit the highlights in this week’s issue of Cult of Mac Magazine. Get the free app to enjoy the stories on your iOS device. Or read them on the web via the link stacks below.

iPhone 13 rumor roundup! [Cult of Mac Magazine 394]

By

iPhone 13 rumor roundup: Here's what we know so far.
Here's what we know so far.
Cover: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

It seems early, but we’re already deep into rumor season when it comes to this year’s iPhone. This week alone, we heard tantalizing tidbits about a massive storage upgrade, a cool black finish and more.

And that’s just for the iPhone. We’re also knee-deep in rumors about upcoming upgrades for AirPods, iMacs and Apple Watch, as well as as-yet-unconfirmed products like AirTags and Apple’s AR headset.

Get up to speed on the latest Apple rumors in this week’s issue of Cult of Mac Magazine. It’s packed with Apple news, reviews and how-tos. Download it to read on iPhone or iPad, or get the stories below in your browser.

Apple leaker Jon Prosser shaves eyebrows after missing key prediction

By

Apple leaker Jon Prosser shaves his eyebrows.
Jon Prosser makes good on his promise to totally destroy his eyebrows.
Screenshot: Front Page Tech

Jon Prosser’s eyebrows are officially toast.

Prosser, the serial Apple leaker with a big personality and a seemingly deep field of sources inside Cupertino, pledged to shave his eyebrows if we didn’t get an Apple event on March 23.

Well that day has come. And the Apple event didn’t. So he took a trimmer to his precious eyebrows in the most Prosser way possible — on YouTube, with a solid sense of humor (and a charity to boot).

R.I.P HomePod [Cult of Mac Magazine 393]

By

R.I.P. HomePod.
Apple buries another beloved product.
Cover: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

Pour one out for our homie, the HomePod.

Apple recently pulled the plug on its sweet-sounding smart speaker, and the move is definitely not music to our ears. In fact, it calls into question Apple’s strategy of releasing — and then rudely abandoning — expensive, niche products. Maybe it’s time to throw in the towel on that.

Find out why we hope that never happens again in this week’s free issue of Cult of Mac Magazine. Download it to enjoy on iPhone or iPad, or get the stories below in your browser.

Goodbye, iMac Pro … and good riddance! [Cult of Mac Magazine 392]

By

Goodbye, iMac Pro ... and good riddance.
Farewell ... and don't let the door bang you on the bezel on your way out.
Cover: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

The iMac Pro was sleek and fast and capable and ultimately … uninspired.

That’s Cult of Mac writer Luke Dormehl’s take on Apple’s recently expired pro all-in-one. He serves up a compelling “Dear John” letter to a weird period in Mac history. And it doubles as a lovingly hopeful look at what the future holds.

If you want to peer even deeper into the Cupertino crystal ball, we’ve got a hot mess of new rumors and leaks this week as we speed toward a probable Apple event on March 23. Catch up with this week’s free issue of Cult of Mac Magazine. Download it to enjoy on iPhone or iPad, or get the stories below in your browser.

iPhone: The Next Generations! [Cult of Mac Magazine 391]

By

The future of the iPhone is coming into focus.
The future of the iPhone is coming into focus.
Cover: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac

An unusually deep and detailed report from one of the world’s most reliable Apple analysts gives us a possible look at where the iPhone is headed in the next few years.

From no-brainers like bigger batteries (coming later this year) to more mysterious possibilities like a folding model (2023 at the earliest), this week’s top stories offer a glimpse of what the next generation of iPhones might bring.

Get up to speed with this week’s free issue of Cult of Mac Magazine. Download it now to read on iPhone or iPad, or get all the top headlines in the link lists below. And let us know if the features you’re craving are on Apple’s agenda.

Billie Eilish doc attracts coveted young viewers to Apple TV+

By

New documentary
Sounds like the Billie Eilish doc brought a coveted crowd to Cupertino's streaming service.
Photo: Apple TV+

How do you get the kids to tune into your underachieving streaming service? Buy a documentary about one of the hottest young singer/songwriters in the world.

That’s what Apple TV+ did when it snapped up the rights to new doc Billie Eilish: The World’s a Little Blurry — and the strategy apparently worked. As per usual, Cupertino won’t reveal the actual number of people who watched the film since its premiere last week. However, an insider report says the music doc brought a ton of new, young viewers to Apple TV+.

Weird series Calls brings terrifying phone convos to Apple TV+

By

New audio-intensive Apple TV+ show Calls leaves a lot to the imagination.
New audio-intensive Apple TV+ show Calls leaves a lot to the imagination.
Image: Apple TV+

Calls, the new thriller coming to Apple TV+, will depend on ears instead of eyes to get hearts pounding.

The oddball series “masterfully uses only audio and minimal abstract visuals to tell bone-chilling snackable stories,” Apple said in a description of the Calls trailer posted Wednesday.