Aukey’s magnetic iPhone 12 charger costs half what Apple’s does [Review]

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Aukey Aircore 15W review
Aukey Aircore 15W uses Apple’s MagSafe system to clip to an iPhone 12 series model and power it up.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

Say goodbye to plugging in Lightning cables with the Aukey Aircore 15W. Touch this wireless charger to the back of an iPhone 12 and it’ll cling there, juicing up the battery.

I tested this low-cost accessory in real-world conditions. Here how it handled.

Mantra behind orgy of screens: ‘Nothing exceeds like excess’ [Setups]

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Can you ever really have too many monitors?
Can you ever really have too many monitors?
Photo: KipKang@Reddit

A Mission Control-looking setup featuring an ultrawide monitor with a spacious screen above it and a portrait-oriented screen on either side of it was bound to get some attention — especially with ring lights sticking up from it like antennae. And it did.

“That just seems so excessive that it isn’t even funny,” one Redditor commented on KipKang’s post promoting his MacBook Pro setup and its relative orgy of displays. “I love it and I am jealous of it. Long winded way of saying NICE!”

“Thanks! ‘Nothing exceeds like excess,’” KipKang replied.

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As the world shifts from web browsers to apps, tensions may rise between Apple and Google over search.
The future of search isn't browsers.
Photo: Solen Feyissa/Unsplash CC

Creepy Calls is a fascinating but flawed head trip [Apple TV+ review]

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Calls on Apple TV+
Calls on Apple TV+
Photo: Apple TV+

With new show Calls, Apple TV+ brings a French TV sensation to America and it’s three things in one. It’s a fascinating experiment, an old idea repackaged — and something of a missed opportunity.

The series, which premieres this Friday, hides its star-studded voice cast behind pixelated images and on-screen text, making it sort of an anti-event. That alone means Calls faces an uphill climb to find a new audience.

Artist uses vintage Mac to re-create Flatiron Building, one pixel at a time

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Wahyu Ichwandardi image
Imagine the hours it took to draw this.
Photo: Wahyu Ichwandardi

Using a 1984-era Macintosh 128K and various retro tools, Pinot W. Ichwandardi painstakingly crafted a beautiful pixel art drawing of one of New York City’s most stunning skyscrapers.

Ichwandardi created his stunning image of the Flatiron Building one pixel at a time, a process he calls “pixel knitting” due to its time-intensive nature. But the incredibly detailed artwork isn’t even the point.

“The most rewarding thing from it is the process,” the 50-year-old designer told Cult of Mac.

It just goes to show that even a Mac that’s nearly 40 years old can still be used to make amazing pieces artwork. And you can buy a print of Ichwandardi’s Flatiron Building art — printed on a vintage dot-matrix printer, naturally!

OLED displays could be coming to iPad and MacBook in 2022

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MacBook Air M1 2020
Future MacBooks could come with OLED screens.
Photo: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

Apple will bring OLED displays to both the iPad and MacBook in 2022, according to a new report from Digitimes.

OLED (short for “organic light emitting diode”) screens offer several advantages over older technologies, including more-vibrant colors, higher contrast, thinner hardware and increased power efficiency.

Losing Alice gets kinky as the end draws near [Apple TV+ review]

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Alice, played by Ayelet Zurer, finally gains the upper hand this week.
Photo: Apple TV+

Losing Alice starts to wind down its look at the perverse triangle formed by a screenwriter, a director and their star in the Apple TV+ psychothriller’s penultimate episode.

The time has come for Alice to direct David and Sophie in their big, erotic close-up. Can they find the chemistry needed to sell it before the wheels come off the machine and Sophie is found out?

Elago iPhone 12 stand makes Apple MagSafe charger even better [Review]

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Elago MS1 Charging Stand for MagSafe review
The Elago MS1 stand holds your iPhone 12 up while it’s charging on Apple’s MagSafe puck.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

Apple’s new MagSafe iPhone 12 charger has limitations. But the Elago MS1 Charging Stand wraps around Apple’s simple puck and makes it better.

I tested this useful accessory on my desk and at my bedside. Here’s why I like it.

Music to your ears? This Mac setup is part workspace, part soundscape [Setups]

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An audiophile's setup includes not just computers and a killer sound system, but sound enhancers on the walls and in corners.
An audiophile's setup includes not just computers and a killer sound system, but sound enhancers on the walls and in corners.
Photo: Ed Yoon

Ed Yoon has a job many music fans and players would covet. He’s chief operating officer of high-end electric guitar maker and distributor Strandberg Guitars USA in Riverside, California. As you might guess from his line of work, he’s a major audiophile. And his office setup makes a lot of noise to that effect.

OK, not “noise.” Beautiful music.

Even before the pandemic, Yoon had been working a lot from home to manage the company’s operations. Then, as COVID-19 spread, remote work became the norm. Unlike most of us, he needed more than just a desk and a computer with decent speakers. He had to have mind-blowing audio.