iPhone cases

How to update AirPods firmware

Apple periodically brings out new firmware with improvements and bug fixes. It’s well worth installing these updates because they fix bugs and sometimes contain significant new features. The 6A300/6A301 update, for example, added new features to the entire AirPod line.

Apple typically doesn’t bother to announce AirPods updates. However, the company recently started publishing release notes so users know what’s changed.

Firmware updates are conducted automatically when your AirPods are charging and in Bluetooth range of an iPhone, iPad, or Mac that’s connected to Wi-Fi.

What is the latest AirPods firmware?

    • AirPods (3rd generation): 6A321

    • AirPods (2nd generation): 6A321

    • AirPods Max: 6A300

    • AirPods (1st generation): 6.8.8

What is the latest AirPods Pro firmware?

    • AirPods Pro (2nd generation) with MagSafe Charging Case (USB-C): 6B34

    • AirPods Pro (2nd generation) with MagSafe Charging Case (Lightning): 6B34

    • AirPods Pro (1st generation): 6A321

Apple introduced firmware version 6A321 only for AirPods 3 in on January 17, replacing 6A317 from September. The release notes say it simply offers “bug fixes and other improvements.”

At this time, only AirPods Max remains on version 6A300. AirPods Pro 2 are on 6B34 from December 5, whether the earbuds are from 2022 or the new 2023 edition.

How to check AirPods’ current firmware version on iPhone or iPad

It’s pretty easy to quickly check if your AirPods are up to date in iOS and iPadOS.

1. Connect your AirPods to your iPhone or iPad

AirPods Pro in an open case.
Connect your AirPods to your device by opening the case — or pop them in your ears.

Read Cult of Mac’s latest posts on iPhone cases:

OtterBox ‘Cactus Leather’ iPhone case looks good and makes you feel good [Review]

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OtterBox Cactus Leather iPhone case
OtterBox's new iPhone cases look like leather but haven't been anywhere near a cow.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

The just-released OtterBox cactus leather iPhone cases give buyers the option to wrap their handset in a plant-based material rather than traditional leather. In my testing, the cactus-based material looks and feels somewhat similar to cow leather but not identical.

There’s a lot to like about OtterBox Symmetry Series Cactus Leather iPhone cases that are now available starting Monday.

Score up to 92% off iPhone cases and accessories

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iPhone cases and accessories sale
iPhone cases from Case-Mate, OtterBox and Speck are included in the sale.
Photo: Case-Mate

Amazon bargains site Woot! always brings the bargains on Apple gear and accessories. Now you have your pick of super-low prices on iPhone cases and other accessories, mixed in with some of the same for Android users.

And while the sale includes 85 items as of midday Wednesday, seven have sold out so far. The sale ends May 31 at 10 p.m. Pacific.

Nomad’s new Sport Band and iPhone case glow even brighter in the dark

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Nomad Glow accessories
You will see this guy and his Nomad Glow accessories coming, even in the dark.
Photo: Nomad

Apple accessories maker Nomad turned up the wattage Tuesday on its second-generation glow-in-the-dark Sport Band for Apple Watch. And it also unveiled its first-ever Glow Sport Case for iPhone 15 Pro models. They both glow in the dark — even more so than the first Glow Sport Band.

New mophie case adds hours to iPhone battery life [Review] ★★★★

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mophie juice pack for iPhone 15 review★★★★
mophie juice pack is two useful iPhone 15 accessories in one.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

The new mophie juice pack for iPhone 15 combines a protective case with a power bank. Simply put your handset in the case to greatly extend your battery life and add 6 feet of drop protection.

I did real-world testing on the version specifically for the iPhone 15. (mophie also sells juice packs for the iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max, but not iPhone 15 Plus.)

Apple FineWoven accessories: Not quite dead yet?

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FineWoven Apple Watch bands
FineWoven accessories like Apple Watch bands may not be gone yet, but it seems they will go soon.
Photo: Apple

The same leaker who pronounced Apple’s FineWoven material dead Sunday said Tuesday the leather replacement will live one more “season” in new colors. Apple uses the textile in iPhone cases and wallets, Apple Watch bands and some AirTag accessories like keychains.

Presumably, Apple will find a way to replace the heavily criticized material soon, and probably without returning to leather goods, as the leaker implied in their original post on X.

Apple might have stopped making FineWoven accessories

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The Apple FineWoven case is the best official Apple case for iPhone 15.
Time to say goodbye to Apple's FineWoven iPhone cases and Apple Watch bands?
Photo: Apple

Apple reportedly ceased the production of its FineWoven iPhone cases and Apple Watch bands. Announced alongside the iPhone 15 series in September 2023, the woven material replaced leather in Apple’s accessories lineup.

However, users criticized the FineWoven material for its poor durability and in-hand feel. Its shortcomings became especially evident after a few weeks of use.

Solar eclipse-inspired iPhone cases look stellar

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Solar eclipse iPhone cases by Carved
These iPhone cases are truly one of a kind.
Photo: Carved

A collection of 100 wild-looking smartphone cases inspired by the upcoming solar eclipse is selling out fast. The one-of-a-kind solar eclipse iPhone cases, made by the craftspeople at Carved, will give your handset an out-of-this-world look.

“We’ve been working hard to capture the essence of this coming 2024 eclipse,” the company said Friday on its Facebook page. “In all the excitement we’ve made a very limited run of eclipse designs just for you!”

AI designed this insane $326,700 iPhone case

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An AI-designed iPhone case by Labodét with crocodile and alligator leather, diamonds and gold detailing.
This stunning iPhone case can be yours for only 300,000 euros. We dare you.
Photo: Labodét

A new iPhone case designed by an AI that apparently doesn’t grasp the value of the dollar will set you back a cool $326,700. The “uber-exclusive” case for iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max models, from French luxury accessories company Labodét, is made of “genuine alligator and exclusive Himalayan crocodile leathers.”

Obviously, it comes festooned in diamonds and features 18K gold detailing. Dust off your titanium Apple Card and hit the link below to snap one up!

With this thing, your iPhone 15 Pro can go nearly naked

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Nomad Magnetic Leather Case Back for iPhone 15 Pro:Pro Max
It's sort of like going halfway from case to caseless.
Photo: Nomad

When I first saw Nomad’s brand-new Magnetic Leather Back for the iPhone 15 Pro series, I thought, what is this, like a thong for iPhone?

Well, it’s what its name describes, a partial case. And it’s for those who wish their handset was naked, but they can’t bring themselves to strip it completely.

Grab one of Laut’s stunning iPhone 15 cases while you can

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Laut Crystal Matter cases for iPhone 15
Laut's Crystal Matter cases come in three colors and fit any of the four iPhone 15 handsets.
Photo: Laut

If you don’t want to go “nearly nude” with your iPhone 15, check out Laut’s supremely stylish and highly protective cases for the handsets.

You can shop all 14 products in the Laut collection, including 11 cases, two screen protectors and one lens protector for iPhone 15, in the Cult of Mac Store. See some highlights below.

Last chance to win a colorful and durable Pitaka iPhone 15 case [Cult of Mac giveaway]

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Pitaka's new Moonrise case for iPhone 15 is a cool blue spin on the company's Sunset Moment case, which sold out last year.
Pitaka's new Moonrise case for iPhone 15 is a cool blue spin on the company's Sunset Moment case, which sold out last year.
Photo: Pitaka

Cult of Mac joined forces with Pitaka again for another unmissable giveaway. Four fortunate winners will receive one of two iPhone cases: either a gorgeous orange-and brown Sunset case — inspired by Jack Kerouac’s Beat Generation novel On the Road, and previously sold out — or a blue-tinged variant called the Moonrise case. (That one’s color scheme pays tribute to “the ‘blue hour’ between sunset and moonrise,” according to Pitaka.)

Each case retails for $69.99, and winners will receive one or the other at random. Don’t miss your shot at landing one of these sought-after iPhone cases!

OtterBox makes ‘leather’ iPhone cases out of … cacti?!?

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OtterBox Symmetry Series Cactus Leather iPhone cases product shot
No cows were harmed making the new Symmetry Series Cactus Leather iPhone cases.
Photo: OtterBox

OtterBox’s new iPhone cases, Apple Watch bands and MagSafe wallets might look and feel like they’re made of leather, but they’re not. They’re made from nopal cactus leaves.

The exclusive Desserto leather alternative used in OtterBox’s Symmetry Series Cactus Leather iPhone cases is “a luxury material that is durable, cruelty-free and sustainable,” the company said Tuesday in a press release.

Nab year-end iPhone accessories deals up to 80% off at Best Buy [Update: Sale over]

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Insignia's 3-in-1 MagSafe charger
Insignia's 3-in-1 MagSafe charger is on sale, along with plenty of iPhone accessories from Apple and others.
Photo: Best Buy

Here’s your last chance of the year to grab certain outstanding deals on iPhone accessories from Best Buy before 2024 comes along, including one item for an astounding 80% off the regular price.

Jump on the links below to nab bargains on iPhone cases, screen protectors, wallets and chargers. Keep in mind the examples below are just a sampling of all that’s on offer. Sales lasts through December 31.

MagEasy iPhone 14 cases go for glamour and toughness

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MagEasy glams it up a bit with one of its new iPhone 14 cases.
MagEasy glams it up a bit with one of its new iPhone 14 cases.
Photo: MagEasy

If you have an iPhone 14, you may want to protect it with a new case. MagEasy offers an interesting selection of options, from glamorous to rugged (but without the bulk). You’ll also find four screen protectors and a portable stand in the mix.

You can see the whole MagEasy iPhone 14 collection in the Cult of Mac Store. And they’re on sale now!

Nab any SwitchEasy iPhone 14 case for 20% off

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What's classier than marble?
What's classier than marble?
Photo: SwitchEasy

Attention iPhone 14 owners: Don’t miss the SwitchEasy sale on all iPhone 14 cases and accessories in the Cult of Mac Store. You can save 20% on any of 10 different cases to protect and dress up your fabulous Apple handset.

The cases cover the bases from tough and functional to highly decorative. There are regular cases as well as MagSafe options. Check out some highlights below. And 20% off saves you about $6 on many of the cases.

Save 30% on sweet Elago accessories for iPhone, Apple Watch through Cyber Monday

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Save on Elago's new Apple Pencil cover
Get the new Apple Pencil cover for just $10.49.
Photo: Elago

Elago’s awesome accessories for iPhone, Apple Watch and AirPods are now available at 30% off through the Cult of Mac Store. All you need to do is add Elago products to your cart and 30% discount will automatically be added.

You can save on brilliant retro charging stands inspired by iconic devices like the original Macintosh and Game Boy, Apple Watch bands, iPhone cases, AirPods bumpers, and lots more. There’s also 30% off Elago’s new Apple Pencil cover.

This discount ends at 11:59 p.m. Pacific Monday, November 27 (Cyber Monday), so enjoy it while you can.

Snag a 5-piece iPhone accessories bundle for just $35

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Save $89 on this 5-piece Apple-compatible charging set.
This $35 bundle includes everything you need to keep your iPhone ready for action.
Photo: Cult of Mac Deals

You don’t need to empty your bank account at the Apple Store to fully accessorize your iPhone. In the run-up to Black Friday, you can grab a useful five-piece iPhone accessory bundle on sale at a special low price of $34.97.

Usually worth $129, you won’t need a coupon code to bag this deal on handy iPhone accessories. But you will need to be quick, as it’ll only be available through November 16.

Your iPhone needs this luxurious leather wallet case [Review] ★★★★

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Mujjo Full Leather Wallet Case with MagSafe★★★★
You don't need a separate wallet with this handsome leather iPhone case from Mujjo.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

Apple dropped its leather iPhone cases, but the Mujjo Full Leather Wallet Case with MagSafe is a brilliant alternative. It protects your valuable handset while also providing an easy way to carry credit cards and drivers license. Plus, it looks gorgeous while doing so.

I carried my iPhone 15 Plus this case on holiday, to restaurants … everywhere I went for weeks. Here’s why I love this case for my iPhone 15 Plus, despite a notable drawback.

Get up to 35% off big selection of eye-catching iPhone cases

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SwitchEasy's MagEasy lineup of iPhone cases is on sale.
SwitchEasy's MagEasy lineup of iPhone cases is on sale.
Photo: SwitchEasy

If you have an iPhone, you should probably protect that expensive gadget from drops and scrapes with a case. And it’ll change up your handset’s look, too. Good thing SwitchEasy is having a big sale on its MagEasy lineup — one case for 20% off and an additional 15% off when you buy two cases.

The collection on sale includes a variety of cases for iPhone 14, 13, 12, 11 and SE. Just remember to use coupon code cultofmac on the product page when you buy.

Dress your iPhone as a Disney villain with these fun new cases

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Casetify Disney Villains collection
You iPhone and AirPods can have some Hallowe'en fun, too.
Photo: Casetify

Hallowe’en is right around the corner, and to celebrate Casetify launched a collection of iPhone cases
featuring Disney villains. And there are accessories for AirPods and Apple Watch, too.

More of a Rick and Morty fan? Casetify has an array of iPhone, MacBook, etc. options for you, too.

Hands-on with Spigen’s iMac-inspired iPhone 15 case [Review]

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Three of Spigen's limited-edition Classic C1 MagFit cases, inspired by 1998's iconic iMac G3.
Spigen's limited-edition Classic C1 MagFit case is inspired by 1998's iconic iMac G3.
Photo: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

One of my favorite iPhone cases of all time is Spigen’s Classic C1 MagFit case. Inspired by the iconic iMac G3, the translucent case is strong, protective, easy to get on and off, and inexpensive.

I used a similar Spigen case all last year to protect my iPhone 14. The case now looks worse for wear, but the iPhone remains pristine.

Spigen updated the case in a limited run for the iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max, and in my hands-on testing, it’s as good as ever.

Enter to win a protective and stylish iPhone 15 bundle from Laut [Cult of Mac giveaway]

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Premium iPhone case, that is built to protect and has a great sleek look.
This week's giveaway pairs a premium iPhone case with a screen protector for maximum protection.
Photo: Laut

We teamed up with Laut this week to give three lucky winners a great accessory bundle featuring new products designed to protect the iPhone 15 series.

This bundle includes an iPhone 15 case and a screen protector to ensure all-around protection for your precious new phone. It’s free and easy to enter!