Up your mobile audio, photo and charging game [Deals]

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This roundup of gear and gadgets includes awesome audio, video, and charging goodies.

Photo: Cult of Mac Deals

Feel like spicing up the digital dimensions of your life? If so, today is your lucky day. That’s because we’ve rounded up massive deals on top shelf accessories, from Bluetooth speakers and headphones, to an awesome digital camera and portable power pack. It’s all discounted by nearly half off or more. Plus, you can get an additional 15 percent off when you use the coupon code “SAVE15” at checkout. Read on for more details:

Google takes on Echo Dot with cheaper Home Mini speaker

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Google Home Mini
Google Home Mini launches this month.
Photo: Google

Getting acquainted with the powerful Google Assistant is now more affordable than ever before, thanks to the new Home Mini speaker.

It has all the power of the regular Google Home, but it’s smaller and much more affordable to take on devices like the Echo Dot. You can pre-order yours today ahead of its official launch on October 17.

Watch Google unveil its new iPhone rivals right here

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Pixel 2 XL
Google's new Pixel 2 XL will be made official today.
Photo: Evan Blass

Google’s popular Pixel smartphones turn 1 today. To celebrate the birthday, the company plans to unveil two new models that will compete with iPhone 8 and iPhone X.

The Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL will be confirmed during a special event that kicks off at 9 a.m. Pacific today. You can watch the whole thing live right here.

Here’s how you’ll activate Siri on the new iPhone

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Siri
iPhone 8 won't have a physical Home button for Siri.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

We might have a brand new way to activate Siri on Apple’s next-generation iPhones, according to one iOS developer.

References in Apple’s source code hint at a new gesture using the physical sleep/wake button, which will enable us to access the virtual assistant in situations where using the “Hey Siri” command isn’t ideal.

Apple code reveals iPhone 8’s virtual Home button secrets

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iPhone 8 concept
Don't expect this kind of functionality.
Photo: iDropNews

Bidding goodbye to the iPhone’s physical Home button won’t be easy, but there are some advantages to going virtual for iPhone 8.

Not only will it allow for a larger edge-to-edge display, but it also means you’ll be able customize the virtual button. Apple code suggests we’ll have the option to resize it and hide it away if we don’t want it to be displayed on screen at all times.

Samsung will fight HomePod with Bixby smart speaker

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Phil Schiller gives the world a sneak peek at the HomePod during WWDC 2017.
Apple will continue to protect your privacy with HomePod.
Photo: Apple

There isn’t an Apple product Samsung doesn’t have an answer to, so it’s not surprising to hear the South Korean company is developing its own HomePod rival.

It will be powered by Bixby, the Galaxy S8’s new virtual assistant, but it’s likely to be a while before it’s ready to hit the market.

Steve Jobs demanded Android-style back button for iPhone

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iPhone could have looked a lot different had Steve Jobs had his way.
iPhone could have looked a lot different had Steve Jobs had his way.
Photo: Apple

Since it made its debut in 2007, the iPhone has relied on just one physical button for returning to the Home screen. But if Steve Jobs had his way, it would have had two.

The Apple co-founder and former CEO tried to convince other executives that the iPhone also needed an Android-style back button for navigation.

Optimize your Wi-Fi, fix bad typing habits and more [Week’s Best Deals]

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collage-2017-06-06
This week's best deals include a time saving typing assistant, a Wi-Fi optimizer, and lots more.
Photo: Cult of Mac Deals

It’s finally starting to get hot out there, but few things are as hot as the new deals in the Cult of Mac Store. The best of this week’s batch include a game-changing tool for mapping and optimizing Wi-Fi connections, and an app that’ll save you time by shortcutting your typing habits. There’s also a massive certification bundle covering all of Microsoft Office, and a top shelf Bluetooth speaker. Everything is discounted by 60 percent or more, read on for more details: