Ted Lasso is back! [Cult of Mac Magazine 411]

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The unlikely Apple TV+ hit comedy returns with more of the same. And that's a good thing.
The unlikely Apple TV+ hit comedy returns with more of the same. And that's a good thing.
Cover: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

Ted Lasso’s second season brings more of the aw-shucks charm and positivity that made the show the biggest hit on Apple TV+.

I didn’t find the show’s concept — a cornball U.S. football coach gets hired to lead a U.K. soccer squad — all that intriguing when the show debuted last year. But Ted Lasso’s relentless optimism won me over. And I’m not alone: The upbeat show definitely struck a chord with pandemic-weary viewers all over the world.

The show might be too sappy for Cult of Mac reviewer Scout Tafoya, who’s apparently not a sports fan. (He’s more of a Schmigadoon! kind of guy.) But even he grudgingly admits Ted Lasso is “handsomely produced and well-acted.”

And really, the show isn’t about sports … it’s about life, leadership and the transformative nature of teamwork.

Scout’s Ted Lasso season 2 review is the cover story of this week’s free edition of Cult of Mac Magazine. Download it now to read on your iOS device of choice. Even if you’re not into sports, or Apple TV+, you’ll find the mag’s stocked with plenty of Apple news, reviews and how-tos.

Play god. Drive safe. Flip birds. Search secret. [Awesome Apps of the Week]

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Apple Arcade delivers blasts from the past, but there's new stuff in the App Store this week as well.
Apple Arcade delivers updated blasts from the past, but there's totally new stuff in the App Store this week as well.
Image: Cult of Mac

Some classic iOS games got upgraded for their Apple Arcade debuts this week, but that’s just the start of this week’s roundup. A new iOS app gives you the chance to win prizes for not driving like a jerk. And a new Mac app lets you effortlessly declutter your presentations.

Plus, a couple of heavy-hitter apps got updates — one kind of serious from a privacy perspective, and one almost completely frivolous. Are you ready for your app upgrades?

Why we want iPhone wireless charging in reverse [Cult of Mac Magazine 410]

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iPhone reverse wireless charging. We want more.
We want more!
Cover: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

The iPhone 12’s secret reverse wireless charging capability will work with Apple’s new MagSafe Battery Pack. That’s great and all, but Apple should let the iPhone charge other gear, too.

Think how cool it would be to top off your AirPods Pro simply by setting them atop your iPhone.

It’s a logical next step (and it might even be coming soon). Find out why we think Apple should go all in on iPhone reverse wireless charging in the cover story of this week’s free Cult of Mac Magazine. Read it in the app on your favorite iOS device, or get the links to the stories below.

How to send Soundmojis in Facebook Messenger

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Amp up your emoji game with Soundmojis in Facebook Messenger.
Amp up your emoji game with Soundmojis in Facebook Messenger.
Image: Facebook

Emoji just got a sonic boost in Facebook Messenger. The social network’s chat app added Soundmojis on Thursday, giving users the option of sending audio snippets with some key emoji.

At launch, you can send catchphrases from TV shows, bits of hit songs, and garden-variety stock sounds. If your conversation demands the world’s tiniest violin emoji, your chat partner can actually hear it!

FaceTime’s fantastic new features [Cult of Mac Magazine 409]

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Find out how to use FaceTime's hot new features.
Find out how to use FaceTime's hot new features.
Cover: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

FaceTime is about to get even better. In iOS 15, which is available now as a free public beta, Apple’s proprietary messaging service gets great new audio and video features. Plus, you can use it to communicate with Android and Windows folks as well.

Find out what these new FaceTime features do, and how to use them, in this week’s free issue of Cult of Mac Magazine. Also don’t miss this week:

Read all about it in our iOS mag, or get the links below.

The long path to success for Apple TV+ [Cult of Mac Magazine 408]

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What does
What does "success" really look like for Apple TV+?
Cover: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

Apple TV+ just keeps adding new movies and shows, but how many people are watching? Only Apple knows for sure.

An entertainment industry expert takes a look at the current state of Apple TV+ — and outlines what the future might hold for the streaming video service. Read the Q&A to find out what “success” might look like for Apple TV+.

That’s our cover story in this week’s free issue of Cult of Mac Magazine. Download it to read on your iPhone or iPad, or get the links to the week’s top Apple news, reviews and how-tos below.

Get $9 off Apple’s seriously upgraded Siri Remote — the first discount we’ve seen

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Apple TV Siri Remote sale: You don't need to buy the cow to get the milk. Or something.
You don't need to buy the cow to enjoy the sweet cream. Or something.
Photo: Jeremy Zero/Unsplash CC

You can get the best part of this year’s Apple TV update — the totally redesigned Siri Remote — at a healthy $9 off from Verizon Wireless right now. It’s the first discount we’ve seen on the new Apple TV remote, and it drops the price to just $49.99 with free shipping.

By buying the remote separately, current Apple TV owners gain major benefits while avoiding the big (and mostly pointless) investment in the pricey new set-top box. And you don’t need to be a Verizon Wireless subscriber to jump on this hot deal, either.

iOS 15 brings big changes to Safari — but don’t worry [Cult of Mac Magazine 407]

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In iOS 15, Safari's Address Bar gets a new address.
In iOS 15, Safari's Address Bar gets a new address.
Cover: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

I’m too terrified to put the iOS 15 beta on my iPhone. Luckily, Cult of Mac writer Ed Hardy isn’t afraid to sacrifice his smartphone’s stability — and maybe his sanity.

He’s been selflessly testing the next-gen operating system to evaluate the changes coming soon to an iPhone near you. And he’s ready to tell you exactly what to expect in Safari in iOS 15.

Some folks seem upset by Apple’s more-controversial changes, but Ed says not to worry. Find out what he likes about Safari in iOS 15, and what he doesn’t, in this week’s cover story. Download Cult of Mac Magazine to read for free on your iPhone or iPad.

Also this week, we’ve got reviews of new documentaries Fathom and Who Are You, Charlie Brown? And, of course, all the usual Apple news, reviews and how-tos.

Logitech MX Travel Case gives your mouse a proper home away from home

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Your Logitech mouse is ready to hit the road with the new Logitech MX Travel Case.
Your Logitech mouse is ready to hit the road with the new MX Travel Case.
Photo: Logitech

If you love your Logitech mouse as much as I do, you probably hate jamming it unceremoniously into your suitcase. So undignified!

And yet, if you’re like me, you likely depend on your mouse. For me, it’s crucial if I want to remain comfortable and also get some serious work done on the road. The new Logitech MX Travel Case provides proper housing for your precious pointer (and some other gear, too).

Silicone case makes Apple TV’s new Siri Remote even more awesome

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Elago 2021 Apple TV Siri Remote R1 Intelli Case: This silicone case will keep your new Apple TV remote safe.
This new silicone case will keep your new Apple TV remote safe.
Photo: Elago

If the stark aluminum chassis of the new Siri Remote leaves you cold, a stylish new silicone case from Elago could warm your heart.

It’s not only about making the Apple TV remote more comfortable in your hands, though. The R1 Intelli Case packs a trick or two. And it comes in any color you want — as long as that color is “black as Steve Jobs’ turtleneck.”