AirTags and other new Apple gear might land this week

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APple Smart Battery Case iPhone XR
Apple might quietly unveil an iPhone 11 Smart Battery Case this week, like this one for last year’s handset.
Photo: Apple

Rather than having an October event, Apple unveiled AirPods Pro today via press release. This sparked speculation that the company plans to quietly take the wraps off more products this week.

A release date for the Mac Pro, fresh Apple TV hardware, and other items could be announced, one each day.

New iPhone XS battery case works with iPhone X. Sort of.

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APple Smart Battery Case iPhone XR
You can use the new Apple Smart Battery Case with the iPhone X if you’re willing to put up with some hassle.
Photo: Apple

Apple clearly says its new battery cases aren’t compatible with the iPhone X but some users of that handset claim that they’ve gotten the two to work together.

The designs of new iPhone XS and older X are nearly identical and the 2017 model mostly fits in the Smart Battery Case. Nevertheless, the handset gets power only under some conditions.

Why I love Apple’s hideous Smart Battery Case

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iPhone case
Apple's Smart Battery case has got me charged!
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Apple’s own battery case, cleverly titled the Smart Battery Case, has been on the market for over two years now. I had never really taken an interest in it;  it was just another battery case, only this one looked like it was pregnant with an iPod.

That was until last week, when I was desperately in need of some form of charger for my iPhone and decided to pick one up. Since then, my thoughts on what was just an ugly, overpriced battery case have totally changed.

Check out the video below to find out why it’s earned a place in my heart — and is now my favorite iPhone case.

5 Apple accessories every bit as crappy as the iPhone battery case

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Smart case
Help! My iPhone 6s has eaten my iPhone 4.
Photo: Apple

The consensus view of Apple’s newly launched hunchback iPhone battery case is that it should ideally be hidden from human view, spending its life in isolation ringing bells in Notre Dame.

Immediately upon release, the Internet filled with loud, angry protesters saying this kind of thing would never have happened in Steve Jobs’ day (and accusing Jony Ive of snoozing on the job). While I’m definitely no fan of Apple’s $99 Smart Battery Case, this isn’t the first time the company has released a less-than-stellar piece of design work amidst its usually gorgeous offerings.

Check out the list below for five of the worst pieces of design to come out of Cupertino since … well, yesterday, actually.