Apple should sue Xiaomi for its blatant copying — but it won’t

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Xiaomi Mimoji look very familiar.
Mimoji is one of many products Xiaomi has ripped from Apple.
Photo: Xiaomi

Xiaomi has a history of shamelessly ripping off bigger brands, and nine times out of ten, its chosen target is Apple.

The Chinese company has previously cloned the iPhone, iPad, MacBook, and more — without a single shred of fear that it might one day feel the wrath of Apple’s legal department.

Xiaomi’s latest ripoff is its own version of Memoji, and it brazenly stole Apple’s own commercials to promote it on a number of retail channels this week.

Here’s how Xiaomi gets away with it.

How to use the OP-Z’s new sampler with your iPhone

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This is all you need to make a hit record. Well, maybe a few dongles, too…
This is all you need to make a hit record. Well, maybe a few dongles, too…
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

Teenage Engineering’s awesome, pocket-size OP-Z synth can now record and use samples. Thanks to a massive software update, it can now sample live audio in through its mic, or via its USB-C port. And yes, if you hook it up to an iPhone or iPad via USB, it shows up as a standard audio interface: You can record from, and send audio to, the OP-Z in lossless digital quality.

Today we’re going to check out these new features. A few limitations prove annoying, but Apple users should feel accustomed to that by now.

Secrets to multitasking like a pro in iPadOS 13 [Video]

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Multitasking gives you the power to use up to three apps at once on iPad.
Multitasking gives you the power to use up to three apps at once on iPad.
Photo: Ian Fuchs/Cult of Mac

iPad multitasking gets a boost in iPadOS, with tweaks and enhancements that make it easier to do more on Apple tablets.

If you use an iPad for anything beyond watching videos, you should be thrilled by these changes, which boost inter-app productivity. Here’s how to take advantage of the different flavors of multitasking in iPadOS.

iOS 13 finally lets you edit, crop and filter your videos

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iOS 13 video editing
Confused?
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

In iPadOS and iOS 13, you will be able to edit videos just the same way you can edit photos today. You can crop them, rotate them, add filters and adjust their color. And — finally — you can simply save the edited version instead of spawning a copy every time you make a simple trim.

Check out the great new iOS 13 video editing features:

iPadOS Files’ search is now almost as good as the Mac’s

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Files app iPadOS
Files can be stored in drawers.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

The Files app is waaaaay better in iOS 13 and iPadOS. It adds external USB storage support, so you can plug in anything from a hard drive or USB-C stick to a synthesizer that can mount as a USB drive to load samples and presets.

Apple’s built-in file-management app adds column view (with a handy preview) and all the metadata you want to know about a given file. And it also benefits from a massively upgraded search feature.

How to use Safari’s download manager in iOS 13

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Safari's new download manager in iOS 13.
Safari's new download manager in iOS 13.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

In iOS 13 and iPadOS, Safari gets a download manager. If you tap (or click, with the new iOS mouse support) on a link to a file, that file will now get downloaded to a folder. What’s more, you can change the location of that download folder.

This is one of the small but essential new features in iPadOS that really turns the iPad into a viable MacBook replacement, even for those who aren’t yet used to the arcane ways of iOS. Let’s check it out.

How to use a PS4 or Xbox One controller with iOS 13 and iPadOS

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Xbox One controller Apple EarPods
Controller support is better than ever.
Photo: Evan Killham/Cult of Mac

iOS 13, iPadOS, and tvOS 13 will finally allow you to play games with a PlayStation 4 or Xbox One controller.

That means there’s no need to purchase a pricey MFi controller that is restricted by Apple’s outdated gamepad guidelines. Simply connect one of the controllers you already own and you’re good to go.

Here’s how to get set up.

How to make your iPhone read any text out loud

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Speaker grille read text
This speaker symbolizes every word spoken by your iPhone.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

Today we have another great tip ripped form the iPhone’s accessibility settings. The screen reader lets you use a quick two-finger gesture to read anything on the screen. This is obviously designed for folks who have trouble reading the screen, but it is also very handy for everyone else.

You can listen to a long magazine article while you do the dishes for example, and much more.

Vignette adds contact photos to your faceless friends

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Vignette App icon on iPhone Screen
Vignette searches popular platforms to find pictures for your contacts
Photo: Ian Fuchs/Cult of Mac

If you’re anything like me, you love having contact photos for people you talk to most. But, again, if you’re like me, keeping those pictures updated and accurate can be a total pain and a massive time suck.

That’s where Vignette comes in. The simple utility app for iPhone is your key to a better looking contacts list without all the hassle.

Developed by Casey Liss of “Analog(ue),” “Accidental Tech Podcast,” and “Casey on Cars” fame, the app grew from a passing notion on a podcast to a full-on utility for updating contact photos.

Sleek wireless charger looks great while powering up iPhone and AirPods [Review]

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Satechi Wireless Charger V2
A wireless charging mat should look as good as it works, and Satechi’s does.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

Wireless charging is so much easier than the daily hassle of plugging and unplugging your iPhone. And the new AirPods wireless charging case makes giving up Lightning cables even more logical. Satechi just introduced a Apple-compatible wireless charger that’s not only functional, it’s also great looking.

We fully tested this accessory out, so don’t miss our hands-on review.