How a Magic Keyboard made it into the new 16-inch MacBook Pro

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Phil Schiller explains how a Magic Keyboard made it into MacBook Pro
Welcome home!
Photo: Apple

Apple’s newly unveiled 16-inch MacBook Pro ditches the controversial butterfly keyboard and brings back the scissor switch Magic Keyboard.

In a new interview, Apple marketing SVP Phil Schiller talked about redesigning Apple’s notebook keyboard. And whether or not the non-butterfly keyboard will make it to other Apple laptops anytime soon.

The best alternatives to Apple’s disastrous MacBooks

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Macbook alternatives: The Surface Book comes with a 100%-working keyboard.
Unlike MacBooks, the Surface Book comes with a 100%-working keyboard.
Photo: Clint Patterson/Unsplash

Apple’s current line of MacBooks is probably its worst laptop lineup in years. The keyboards are so broken that even the newest MacBook Air is covered under Apple’s keyboard repair program. There are too few ports, and too much heat. And if you want to upgrade any internal parts? You’ll have to buy a new MacBook. But what are the best MacBook alternatives?

If you want to ditch the MacBook, you will find plenty of options. However, none of them offer one essential element: macOS. Switching to another operating system is like moving house and having to leave everything but your clothes behind. But there are workarounds even for that. Let’s check out the best alternatives to the MacBook in 2019.

The new AirPods Pro are fandabbydosey [An appreciation]

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AirPod Pro
Apple's new AirPods Pro earbuds are a super-great update to the original.
Photo: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

Hot dang, Apple’s still got it. The new AirPods Pro are fantastic.

They’re truly great headphones, and every major new feature improves on the old AirPods in big and significant ways.

  • The sound is fantastic — a big upgrade.
  • Their active noise cancellation is as good as Bose and Sony headphones (and maybe even better). Finally, you can use AirPods on airplanes.
  • Transparency mode is weird magic.
  • Best of all are the new Force Sensor touch controls, which take a minute to get used to but are way better than tapping. They’re my favorite new feature, and I burst out laughing with delight when I got the hang of it.

I freakin’ love the new AirPods Pro!

‘AirPods Pro’ with noise cancellation could debut this month

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AirPods 2 pairing with iPhone
I've spent MANY hours with these in my ears.
Photo: Ian Fuchs/Cult of Mac

Apple is expected to deliver pricier “AirPods Pro” with noise cancellation later this month, according to a new report.

Images of the buds were leaked by Apple in an iOS 13.2 beta earlier this month. They are expected to offer multiple listening modes and could cost around $100 more than the regular models.

How to use the Apple Watch to snap remote selfies

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Apple Watch camera remote
Apple Watch camera remote inception.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

The Apple Watch is an amazing fitness tracker, and a pretty good notification device. But it has other tricks — tricks that you maybe didn’t know about, or didn’t realize would be quite as useful as they are. One is the Camera app. The Apple Watch doesn’t have its own camera, but it does give you remote control of your iPhone’s camera.

This lets you trigger the camera’s shutter, or record a video, from anywhere in range of your iPhone’s Bluetooth radio. Why? Group self-portraits, without having to set the timer and run back to your friends in time to smile. Videos: I used the video camera function just this week to record my progress for my guitar teacher. Like I said, it might be more useful than you’d expect.

Here’s how to use the Apple Watch camera remote.

What to expect at an Apple October event

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16-inch MacBook Pro concept
A 16-inch MacBook Pro, which might look something like this, could be arrive soon.
Concept Art: Viktor Kádár

An Apple October event hasn’t yet been announced, but there’s such an impressive list of products that are supposedly ready to launch that the company seems to need a big venue to show them all off.

There’s an epic new Mac, a big MacBook, fresh iPads and plenty more, all reportedly coming soon.

iPhone 11 Pro Max battery beats Galaxy Note 10+ by hours

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iPhone 11 Pro Max battery outlasts four recently-released smartphones
iPhone 11 Pro Max outlasted four recently-released marquee smartphones in a battery showdown.
Photo: Mr. Whosetheboss

In a head-to-head “torture test” challenge, the iPhone 11 Pro Max battery not only lasted longer than the ones in Apple’s other 2019 handsets — it beat Samsung’s new flagship model by a wide margin.

Apple put its largest battery ever in the new 6.5-inch iOS device, and it’s clearly paying off.

Photographer calls iPhone 11’s Night mode a game-changer

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Night Mode
Night mode will revolutionize iPhone photography.
Photo: Austin Mann

The iPhone 11 Pro brings what might just be the best camera ever to ship with a smartphone. Travel photographer Austin Mann, who took the iPhone 11 Pro for a spin this week, lavishes praise on the new Night mode.

It’s so good, in fact, that he thinks it will “completely change how everyone shoots on their iPhone.”

Rumor mill fail: Apple delivers legit surprises at iPhone 11 event

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Tim Cook delivers the goods at Apple's iPhone 11 event.
Tim Cook delivers the goods at Apple's iPhone 11 event.
Photo: Apple

In an age when almost every detail of an Apple keynote leaks ahead of time, Tim Cook managed to pull some genuine surprises from the hat Tuesday. Taking the stage at the Steve Jobs Theater at Apple HQ, Cook and Co. announced at least three big things we weren’t expecting at all.

This in itself is a surprise. Even though Cook pledged that Apple is “doubling down” on secrecy, most of the big details about new Apple products typically trickle out ahead of time. Most of the main features of the 2019 iPhones already leaked. Every Apple blog and YouTube channel under the sun has been playing with detailed iPhone mockups and models for weeks.

Still, Cook’s surprise trifecta did not consist of insignificant things. All three were fairly big and meaty announcements — and there wasn’t a peep about them ahead of time. Here’s what took us by surprise during the “By Innovation Only” event.