US bans fliers from bringing batteries on passenger planes as cargo

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Hawaiian Airlines
You'll have to bring batteries in your carry-on now.
Photo: Hawaiian Airlines

The US Department of Transportation and Federal Aviation Administration is making it a little bit harder for fliers to haul lithium-ion batteries to new destinations.

Under new rules revealed today, passengers are banned from storing lithium-ion cells or batteries on cargo during commercial flights. There’s also a new ban that prevents companies from shipping batteries with more than 30 percent charge on cargo-only flights.

Mophie’s new powerstations bring super-fast USB-C charging

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mophone powerstation USB-C battery
New mophie powerstation batteries, including this one, have a USB-C and a USB-A port.
Photo: mophie/Zagg

mophie just unveiled a pair of external batteries designed to supply up to 18W of power. They can give recent iPhone models up to a 50 percent charge in half an hour.

This is possible because the new powerstation PD and PD XL each have a USB-C port, enabling them to transfer more power than older USB-A ports.

Apple batteries could get a whole lot more powerful

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Apple batteries
Even Apple batteries wear out, but longer-lived ones are close to release.
Photo: Apple

A new type of battery promises 20 percent to 40 percent more storage capacity. Even better, one of the companies behind the research has ties to Apple, so the improved lithium-silicon batteries are likely to show up in iPhone and iPad.

How to disable iOS 11.3’s new battery Performance Management feature

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battery
Next time you complain about Apple battery conspiracy theories, imagine how life would be if your iPhone ran on AAs.
Photo: James Almond/Flickr CC

Ever since Apple introduced a measure to stop iPhones from unexpectedly shutting down in iOS 11, politicians and other morons have jumped on the story to gin up publicity for themselves. Now, thanks to their efforts, Apple has added a control that lets you switch off iOS 11’s Performance Management.

If you do switch it off, then your iPhone will stop slowing performance when the battery is too weak to supply enough power, and instead you can again face unexpected shutdowns. Here’s how.

How to get the best battery life from your MacBook

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MacBook battery
Looking after you MacBook battery is really easy.
Photo: FruitJuice

Did you know that leaving your MacBook plugged in all the time is a sure way to ruin its battery? That instead you should use your notebook computer on battery power for an hour or two each day? That’s the advice from battery health app FruitJuice, which will help you to keep your battery in tip-top condition.

How to squeeze the longest life from your iPhone battery

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battery
Just be thankful your iPhone doesn't run on these.
Photo: Toshiyuki IMAI/Flickr CC

Thanks to batterygate, the good news is that Apple will now switch out the battery in your old iPhone for $29 instead of $79, a price so cheap it would be crazy not to do it. But how do you take care of that new battery to stop it going bad? The truth is, the lithium ion batteries in phones and notebook computers have a finite life. But you can prolong that life with a few easy tricks.

Apple confirms it makes old iPhones run slower (for a good reason)

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Apple is investigating battery issues for the iPhone 6s.
Does your iPhone 6s feel slower?
Photo: Buster Hein/Cult of Mac

Does your iPhone seem to get slower and slower as it grows older? Well, according to Apple, that is exactly what’s supposed to happen.

Many iPhone users have long suspected that Apple throttles performance of aging iPhones. The popular theory is that Apple does so to entice users to upgrade. However, Apple says there are really good performance reasons behind the practice.

Slow iPhone? Here’s how to check the health of your battery

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iPhone battery
Brazil demands easy iPhone battery replacements.
Photo: iFixit

With all the fuss about depleted old batteries slowing down iPhones, it might be a good idea to at least check the health of your iPhone’s battery. To do this, you can use a free tool called coconutBattery. This handy app digs into your iOS and Mac devices to tell you how old they are, and how strong your battery is compared to when it was new.

Best iPhone 8 battery cases and backup batteries

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battery cases

Even the giant plus-sized iPhones run out of juice eventually, and that goes for the new iPhone 8 as much as any iPhone before it. You could carry a charger with you and spend the day hunting for available wall-sockets, but these days that’s as lame as using dodgy free Wi-Fi instead of reliable and fast LTE. Instead, you should take some backup power with you. There are two options: battery cases, great for really heavy phone users who always run out of power before lunch, and a spare battery with a USB cable that can charge your iPhone, or any device, but stays in the bottom of your bag until it’s needed.

Let’s take a look at the options. There’s also one very cool surprise feature in one of our picks that “wireless” charging fans are going to love.

Apple Car may use hollow batteries to stay cool

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Charging the Apple Car.
Apple is making revolutionary batteries for its car.
Photo: Motor1

Apple might team up with “expert technologists in batteries” from South Korea to create hollow lithium-ion power cells that will fuel the upcoming Apple Car, according to a new report.

While the name of the South Korean company hasn’t been revealed due to a nondisclosure agreement with Apple, it’s supposedly comprised of just 20 people. The South Korean team reportedly joined Apple’s secretive Project Titan automotive effort earlier this year, and the battery innovations could help the Apple Car stand out from the competition.