Amazing Stories delivers solid shot of escapism with ‘Signs of Life’ [Review]

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Michelle Wilson in Amazing Stories
Michelle Wilson anchors a solid outing of the new Amazing Stories.
Photo: Apple TV+

After a bumpy start, the Apple TV+ reboot of Amazing Stories headed off in an agreeable direction. Between its heart-on-the-sleeve emotional core and the very modern, depressive look at the deflation of the American dream, this is a show that understands why people need to believe in the impossible today.

Episode 4, titled “Signs of Life,” might not be a perfect hour of television. However, it’s got its heart in the right place. And a host of excellent elements make its story beats hit with extra force.

Missile Command: Recharged is a blast from the past [Review]

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Missile Command: Recharged reminds up we used to think this was going to happen any day.
Missile Command: Recharged updates a fast-paced 1980s classic.
Photo: Atari

Emerging from the dark and noisy arcades of the 1980s is a updated version of a classic. Atari’s Missile Command: Recharged for iPhone and iPad is nearly identical to the original with only a few tweaks for a new generation.

And to double down on the nostalgia, an augmented reality mode projects your gameplay onto a virtual arcade cabinet.

Top 5 reasons to love the 2020 iPad Pro

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2020 iPad Pro builds on the 2018 model.
2020 iPad Pro has more RAM, a better camera, an innovative LiDAR 3D scanner and other improvements,
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

The 2020 iPad Pro takes Apple’s very capable tablet from 2018, improves the specs and performance, and even adds some great features.

I did hands-on testing of the new capabilities and found there’s a lot to love in the latest iPad.

Turn your iPad into a mini iMac with this elegant stand [Review]

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Wiplabs Slope iPAd stand
Slope is a stunner!
Photo: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

Now that iPadOS supports mice and trackpads, it’s a better time than ever to turn your iPad into a mini iMac. To do that, you need the Slope: a nice-looking stand that props up your iPad at the perfect angle for working. Just slide a keyboard and trackpad underneath, and you have something that resembles Apple’s new Magic Keyboard, but at a fraction of the price.

Made from anodized aluminum, the Slope looks good in the kitchen, on your desk or at bedside. It keeps your iPad out of the muck when cooking, or at the perfect angle for watching videos.

2020 iPad Pro review roundup: Still stellar, but little reason to upgrade

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Apple Smart Keyboard Folio for the 2020 iPad Pro
The best keeps getting better.
Photo: Apple

Apple’s newest iPad Pro will begin landing on customers’ doorsteps Wednesday, March 25. Will it be worth their hard-earned cash? Let’s find out from reviewers who already have their hands on one.

Unsurprisingly, the 2020 iPad Pro is already being dubbed Apple’s best tablet yet. It improves upon an already winning formula with a LiDAR Scanner, Ultra Wide camera, and faster connectivity.

Some still bemoan missing features in iPadOS. When it comes to the hardware, however, there’s very little to complain about.

The Banker proves too safe an investment for Apple TV+ [Review]

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Anthony Mackie, left, and Samuel L. Jackson star in The Banker, out now on Apple TV+.
Anthony Mackie, left, and Samuel L. Jackson star in The Banker, out now on Apple TV+.
Photo: Apple TV+

Mired in scandal and plagued by delays, the debut fiction film purchased by Apple TV+ is finally here to stream, just in time for everyone in America to be trapped with little else but their TVs.

The Banker, starring Anthony Mackie and Samuel L. Jackson, likely won’t top many best-of lists this year. It’s too slight, though neither does it embarrass itself in the telling of a compelling true story about overcoming discrimination in a racist world.

Amazing Stories continues its hot streak with ‘Dynoman and the Volt’ [Review]

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Robert Forster, left, and Tyler Crumley appear in Amazing Stories episode
Robert Forster, left, and Tyler Crumley appear in Amazing Stories, the veteran character actor's last work.
Photo: Apple TV+

The Apple TV+ reboot of Amazing Stories started with a warning most viewers likely heeded: The show is going to be maudlin, and it will broadcast its emotional and dramatic beats from a mile away. Thankfully, having thrown down that gauntlet, the threat turned into a promise worth keeping. Each episode has been an improvement on the pilot.

“Dynoman and the Volt,” the third episode of the series, has quite a lot to recommend it. Enough, in fact, that it becomes easy to overlook its obvious storytelling and only half-earned poignancy.

2020 MacBook Air review roundup: Magic Keyboard makes all the difference

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2020-MacBook-Air
Still the kind of ultraportables.
Photo: Apple

The first reviews of Apple’s new and improved MacBook Air are out just days after its official unveiling. It will come as no surprise to fans of the machine that each one has great things to say about Apple’s most popular notebook.

New configurations, increased storage, a reduced price, and — most importantly — and brand-new Magic Keyboard make this a stellar MacBook Air upgrade. Still not sure? Here’s what the critics have to say…

Binge time: Best Apple TV+ shows to stream during self-isolation [Review]

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F. Murray Abraham & Rob McElhenney in Mythic Quest: Raven's Banquet
F. Murray Abraham & Rob McElhenney as the squabbling idiot architects of wildly popular MMORPG Mythic Quest: Raven's Banquet
Photo: Apple TV+

Trapped indoors with nothing to watch during the COVID-19 quarantine, or just sick of your usual streaming options? Apple TV+ harbors a day’s worth of exciting and compelling programming to finally dig into.

For anyone looking for an excuse to finally give the streaming service a try, here’s a guide to some standout shows. Not every Apple TV+ series is a slam dunk, but there are hidden gems waiting to be binged during these uncertain times.