| Cult of Mac

Apple’s new iPad Pro keyboard case is slim but pricey [Review]

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The Smart Keyboard Folio turns the iPad into a laptop, but there are better options.
The Smart Keyboard Folio turns the 2018 iPad Pro into a notebook.
Photo: Andrea Nepori

Anyone planning to use a 2018 iPad Pro for business probably needs an add-on keyboard. Apple’s own offering in this category is the Smart Keyboard Folio, which wraps tightly around this new tablet, both protecting it and providing the text input method so many of us depend on.

Because it’s made by Apple, nearly everyone who buys an iPad Pro considers getting this accessory, but the price will give you reason to pause.

We put one through extensive testing to help you decide if it’s right for you.

New Apple case shows iPhone XR’s true colors

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Clear case 2
Coming soon to an iPhone XR near you.
Photo: 9to5Mac

Apple didn’t make a big thing about iPhone XR accessories that will be available when the less-expensive device launches later this month. However, an eagle-eyed iPhone XR fan (try saying that several times fast) spotted a new clear iPhone XR case mentioned in one of Apple’s regional press releases.

In Canada, and potentially other locations, a line tucked away in the iPhone XR press release notes that Apple will release a clear case for its LCD handset. We presume it will be available in the U.S. as well.

Save $75 on Apple Watch, $700 on Macs [Deals & Steals]

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Refurbished Apple Watch LTE units are available.
Pick up your new Apple Watch for $75 less.
Photo: Apple

Best Buy is celebrating Labor Day weekend with some stellar discounts on Apple’s latest devices. You can save $50 on HomePod, $75 on Apple Watch Series 3, and up to $700 on Macs. Today’s Deals & Steals roundup also includes offers on other Apple devices.

Plus, you can protect your home with an impressive smart security camera for under $75, and pick up a pair of smart bulbs that won’t break the bank.

Apple drops 24 percent off cost of a cable you really need

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A USB-C Lightning cable price drop.
A USB-C Lightning cable has several uses, including faster charges for recent iPhone and iPad models.
Photo: Apple

The price of a USB-C Lightning cable dropped 24 percent. That’s good news to almost every iPhone and iPad user.

This cable really should be bundled with Apple’s phone and tablet. It offers faster charging, and is required for connectivity with the latest macOS devices.

Stylish dock lets you charge Apple devices two at a time

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Smart Dual Charging Station
The Smart Dual Charging Station will be available this spring.
Photo: Satechi

CES 2018 bug Tech accessories brand Satechi is using CES this week to show off a new dual charging station that will create the appearance you’re trying to show off your iPhone and Apple Watch.

The Smart Dual Charging Station props up your iPhone and Apple Watch on a stylish stand of silver or space gray brushed aluminum that neatly organizes your charging cords. The station is customizable and can also work with other Apple accessories, such as the Apple Pencil and Siri Remote.

Week’s best Apple deals: Save tons by buying third-party!

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Looking for Apple deals? Sometimes it doesn't pay to go straight to the source.
Looking for Apple deals? Sometimes it doesn't pay to go straight to the source.
Photos: Apple, Belkin, Dynex

It’s no secret that Apple is expensive, which is why sometimes it’s a great idea to buy Apple items and Apple-compatible accessories elsewhere. See such deals on Apple Watch bands, cables and hardware in this week’s roundup of the best Apple deals.