Signs point to a slow, steady year for the Mac in 2024

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The Mac in 2024
2024 will be a slow burner year for the Mac.
Image: Apple/D. Griffin Jones/Cult of Mac

2024 is expected to be a slow and steady year for the Mac, with the iPad and Vision Pro taking center stage. After Apple’s thunderous launch of the M3, M3 Pro and M3 Max chips in the MacBook Pro and iMac a few months ago, these chips will roll out as spec bumps in the MacBook Air M3 and the rest of the lineup next year.

And don’t hold your breath for an M4 MacBook Pro. That probably won’t debut until early or mid-2025.

Hands on with the iKier K1 Pro Max laser engraver and cutter [Review] ★★☆☆☆

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iKier K1 Pro Max laser engraver with a few projects etched into wood sitting beside it★★☆☆☆
The iKier K1 Pro Max with a few of my attempted projects.
Photo: D. Griffin Jones/Cult of Mac

The iKier K1 Pro Max is a top-of-the-line laser engraver that will etch your creations into wood to make beautiful pieces of precision physical art. After extensive testing, I was impressed by the hardware and the pieces I was able to make.

Unfortunately, the machine is complicated to set up and the software let me down at every single step in the process. I never got it working with my everyday Mac, I couldn’t use the machine’s built-in software and the included third-party software (only offered with a 30-day free trial) is a convoluted mess of labyrinthian dialog boxes spawned from user interface hell.

Become an IT security pro in 2024 with this $29.97 training bundle

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Boost your resume with this cybersecurity training bundle for only $29.97.
New Year, new kills: Gain CISSP certification training with this $30 cybersecurity bundle.
Photo: Cult of Mac Deals

Certification is one of the first things that management (and the ATS software they use) looks for when it comes to IT and cybersecurity workers. That’s why CISSP certification is highly sought after.

Now there’s a way to boost your chances at acing those all-important exams — the highly discounted CISSP Security and Risk Management Training Bundle. Ahead of the New Year, you can level up your IT knowledge with this comprehensive bundle for only $29.97 (regularly $424).

Use your iPhone to find and change passwords that hackers stole

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Use your iPhone to find and fix website passwords that hackers have stolen
If hackers steal the passwords you use to log into websites, your Apple device can warn you and help you change them.
Graphic: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

We’re coming to the end of the year, and that’s a good opportunity to do something you’ve probably been procrastinating about: Replace your website passwords that hackers stole because of some company’s lax security. Fortunately, your Apple devices make it easy to find out which of your passwords leaked so you can change them.

Odds are you’re either on holiday or it’s a slow work day. Take this as an excuse to fix a potentially serious problem now.

Ring-a-ding-ding: Get 68% off this video doorbell for HomeKit [Sold out]

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Belkin Wemo smart video doorbell
The video doorbell features dual-band Wi-Fi connectivity.
Photo: Belkin

Christmas day is behind us, but Amazon bargain site Woot! is at it again with a smoking-hot deal for your and yours — two-thirds off the regular price of a Belkin Wemo Smart Video Doorbell!

The hot item sold out recently, so this is a bonus sale on Wednesday, Woot noted. And you should note the gadget works exclusively with HomeKit Secure Video.

Federal court temporarily pauses Apple Watch ban [Updated]

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Biden won't overturn ITC ban on Apple Watch.
U.S. imports and sales of Apple Watch Series 9 and Apple Watch Ultra 2 are on again ... for now.
Photo: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

The ban on Apple Watch 9 and Apple Watch Ultra 2 sales in the United States stands, after the Biden administration confirmed Tuesday it won’t overturn it, but a federal court paused it temporarily Wednesday after Apple’s request for appeal.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit granted a temporary stay until January 10 — so Apple can resume selling the wearables, at least for a short time.

What to expect from iPhone in 2024

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What to expect from iPhone in 2024
2024 iPhones could be all about the little improvements.
Image: Rajesh Pandey/Cult Of Mac

Apple plans some big upgrades for the iPhone 16 lineup in 2024. The phones could get even bigger displays, with AI integration helping make Siri smarter (and, hopefully, a lot more useful).

These changes should arrive on top of the usual yearly upgrades like faster A-series chips and brighter displays. So, what should you expect from iPhones in 2024? Read below to find out.

$2,000 off a loaded MacBook Pro? Don’t miss B&H’s year-end Mega Deal Zone.

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Space black M3 MacBook Pro
Want a great deal on a space-black M3 MacBook Pro? It's in there.
Photo: Apple

The holiday shopping season might cool off a bit right after Christmas, but not at B&H Photo. Its year-end Mega Deal Zone sale is running hot with a bunch of bargains on Apple products this week — especially MacBook Pro.

You can get $250 off a hot new M3 MacBook Pro or up to an amazing $2,000 off a massively loaded 16-inch M1 Max MacBook Pro, to name two examples. See more below.

Ingenious AirTag mount doubles as a reflector for discreet bike tracking

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AirTag bike mount and reflector
There's an AirTag hidden in there somewhere.
Photo: Device Therapy

Strap an AirTag to your bike so that you can discreetly track its location with this ingenious mount from Device Therapy. It looks just like a bog-standard reflector at first glance, so would-be thieves will have no idea it’s even there.

Bag yours today from the Cult of Mac Store for just $15.99.

Today in Apple history: Second-gen Apple TV hits 1 million sales

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apple tvPIC
On this day in 2010, the Apple TV hit a sales milestone.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

December 27: Today in Apple history: Second-gen Apple TV hits 1 million sales December 27, 2010: Almost four months after the second-gen Apple TV’s debut, Cupertino says it has sold 1 million of the streaming video devices.

The news shows that Apple’s set-top box is gaining momentum. However, Apple’s PR move is also a low-blow shot at competitor Roku, which recently said it planned to hit the 1 million unit mark by the end of 2010.

Multiple Macs drive phalanx of Dell displays [Setups]

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Mac Studio setup with 3 external displays
Windows on water everywhere in this triple-screened Mac Studio and MacBook Pro setup.
Photo: kribyl@Reddit.com

After a recent debate over whether dual external displays should be lined up straight across or angled for better ergonomics, a Mac Studio and dual-MacBook setup addresses the question in a different way. It uses three identical displays in landscape mode, placing the center one one straight and one on either side of it at an angle.

And the setup also offers connecitivity tips, running the two MacBooks into two of the displays via a CalDigit dock while the Mac Studio drives one directly.

Cost of ad-free experience on Amazon Prime Video goes up in January

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Amazon Prime Video
You'll soon have to shell out more money for Amazon Prime Video unless you want to watch ads.
Image: Amazon

Starting in late January, Amazon Prime Video subscribers will need to pay an additional $3 a month to watch without commercial interruptions.

The change leaves Apple TV+ as one of the few video streaming services that doesn’t charge extra to avoid adverts.

Stream unlimited documentaries for one low price with Curiosity Stream

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Food for your brain: Curiosity Stream, a documentary streaming channel, is now only $180.
Learn every time you stream with a discount subscription to Curiosity Stream.
Photo: Cult of Mac Deals

Now that the holidays are drawing to a close, we’re ready to cozy up in those gift blankets and de-stress with some TV. If you resolved to learn more in 2024, you can kill two birds with one stone with a discounted lifetime subscription to Curiosity Stream. Home to some of the best documentaries streaming online, the service offers a fun and educational alternative to the usual Netflix noise.

Through January 1, you can get forever access to Curiosity Stream for only $179.97 (regularly $399). You’ll gain a lifetime of original and entertaining documentaries.

Score a lifetime of cheap travel with exclusive pricing on OneAir

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Save on travel costs for life with an end-of-year price drop on OneAir, now under $80.
Pick up a OneAir Elite Plan for only a fraction of the cost and spend less on all your future trips.
Photo: Cult of Mac Deals

If you plan to go on vacation but don’t want to spend more than necessary, consider upgrading how you find cheap travel. OneAir can help you land reduced rates for flights, hotels, rental cars and more. And you can score major end-of-year savings on this great travel service.

Through New Year’s Day at 11:59 p.m. Pacific, you can enjoy a lifetime OneAir Elite Plan subscription for only $79.97 (regularly $790). This exclusive pricing makes long-distance travel more accessible than ever … forever!

What to expect from iPad in 2024: Pro, Air and mini

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What to expect from iPad in 2024: Pro, Air and mini
2024 will be a big, colorful year for iPad.
Image: Cult of Mac

Get ready for big changes in the iPad 2024 lineup. Apple plans to shake things up next year, offering new versions of every tablet model, from the basic budget offering to the largest iPad Pro.

Details of the upcoming changes leaked out early, so we can tell you now what’s coming to the iPad in 2024.

Gain lifetime access to an advanced AI text and speech toolkit for just $30

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Don't miss $170 in savings on lifetime access to the Jott Pro AI Text and Speech Toolkit.
Pick up this comprehensive AI text and speech toolkit for only $30 through New Year's Day.
Photo: Cult of Mac Deals

You’ve likely heard about how AI is producing major changes across massive industries, but it’s also ready to make an individual impact on how we approach daily tasks. You can streamline your to-do list with a boost from AI at a surprisingly low price through New Year’s Day.

Through January 1, Jott Pro’s AI text and speech toolkit is available for only $29.97 (regularly $199). From note collecting and email production to speech-to-text and text-to-speech capabilities, this package provides a far-ranging resource for a fraction of the usual cost.

Create content 100 times faster with Write Bot

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Gift someone Write Bot™ and help them generate content faster than ever for only $20.
Quickly generate blog posts, advertising and more with a lifetime sub to this AI tool for less than $20.
Photo: Cult of Mac Deals

Artificial intelligence can significantly reduce the time it takes to craft copy, and that’s precisely what Write Bot is designed to do. Perfect for bloggers, marketers and content creators, Write Bot makes the writing process incredibly easy and efficient with the power of AI.

Through December 25, a Lifetime Pro subscription is priced down to only $19.97 (regularly $539). And since this is a digital item, you could give Write Bot as a last-minute gift. (You won’t need to worry about Write Bot arriving on time.)

Today in Apple history: Woz spends Christmas building Apple II disk drive

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Disk II pic
The Disk II became a massive success for Apple.
Photo: Wikipedia CC

December 25 Today in Apple history December 25, 1977: Steve Wozniak spends the holidays building a prototype of the Disk II, the Apple II’s revolutionary floppy disk drive.

“I worked all day, all night, through Christmas and New Year’s trying to get it done,” Wozniak would later recall in his autobiography, iWoz. “[Early Apple employee] Randy Wiggington, who was actually attending Homestead High, the school Steve and I had graduated from, helped me a lot on that project.”

Wiggington takes December 25 off. Woz does not.

Learn how to use ChatGPT with this handy prompts guide

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Help someone take full advantage of ChatGPT's potential with $100 off this prompts guide.
This discounted prompts guide allows users to discover more through ChatGPT, now only $20.
Photo: Cult of Mac Deals

ChatGPT can work wonders, both professionally and personally — if you know how to create the perfect prompts. If you want to learn how to use the white-hot AI chatbot to maximum effect, the Ultimate ChatGPT Prompts Guide is the perfect place to start.

Primed to help users maximize ChatGPT’s mighty potential, it’s available for just $19.97 (regularly $119) through December 25. This resource is packed with advice, unlocking thousands of possibilities from the ever-advancing ChatGPT.

How to set up your new Mac like a pro

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Set Up Your New Mac: Moving to a new Mac is fast — we’ll get your Mac on track in no time.
Let's get that nice new Mac set up, shall we?
Image: Apple

It’s a great season to get a new Mac. Every Mac today is a great buy. If you’re one of the lucky people to get one this year, here’s how to set it up like a pro.

So rip open that box, tear off that plastic and get to the good stuff.

If this is your first Mac with Apple’s powerful new chips inside, you’re in for a real treat. It’s pretty easy to set up whether you have an old Mac to transfer data from or you’re starting from scratch. There are a few choices to make along the way, though, and some essential tricks and apps you’ll want to consider, so we’re here to take you through the process.

Here is Cult of Mac’s guide to setting up your new Mac the right way.

How to set up your new AirTag the right way

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AirTag
Here's everything you need to know about setting up your new AirTag.
Photo: Mark Chan/Unsplash

The Apple AirTag is arguably among the company’s most useful product releases in recent years. Once you set up an AirTag, it gives you powerful options for locating it (and whatever you attach it to). Put one of Apple’s tracking tags on an item like a keychain or luggage, and you can easily track its location from your iPhone, Mac or iPad.

Since AirTag’s launch, numerous reports have detailed how the tracking tag helped owners find lost items. If you recently acquired an AirTag, here’s how you can set it up the right way and use it properly.

How to set up and use your brand-new AirPods

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lost AirPods
Not everyone has the ears for AirPods
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

If you’re a super lucky duck, then Santa may have left a pair of AirPods a) in your stocking or b) under your tree (depending on how good or bad you’ve been in 2023). AirPods are truly one of the best products Apple ever made, because they really do offer a huge upgrade on all previous headphones.

They’re easy to use, and they sound amazing. Here are a few pointers on getting the most out of your new AirPods.

How to set up your new iPad the right way

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Set Up Your New iPad
Let's get your new iPad up and running.
Photo: Apple

Congratulations — you got a new iPad! Whether it’s the entry-level iPad that brings the essential features to an affordable price, the iPad Air with the powerful M1, the pocketable iPad mini or the top-of-the-line iPad Pro, you’ll want to set up your new device with the least amount of fuss.

We’re here to help you do just that with a ton of little tips and tweaks that will make sure you’re off and using that new iPad as quickly as possible. From backing up your old iPad (if you had one already) to getting up and running with a brand-new iPad from scratch, we’ve got you covered.