Brilliant concept brings Touch Bar to the Mac mini

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Mac Mini
This Mac Mini concept is pretty crazy.
Photo: Louis Berger

It’s time for Apple to think different when it comes to the Mac mini.

Even though it’s been over 1,000 days since Apple last updated its smallest Mac machine, Tim Cook insists it’s still an important part of Apple’s product line. Apple fans are desperate for an update, but if it looks anything like this concept it’ll have been well worth the wait.

Take a closer look:

7 biggest takeaways from Apple’s record Q4 earnings

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Will Apple reach its own targets for Q2?
AAPL shares are on the rise.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Apple surprised investors with its best Q4 earnings report ever today. The outrageous numbers dispelled doubts about the iPhone-maker’s strategy — and pushed Apple closer to becoming the world’s first trillion-dollar company.

With the launch of the iPhone X just hours away, Apple CEO Tim Cook had a lot to be happy about during the earnings call with investors. Analysts quizzed Cook and Apple CFO Luca Maestri on everything from iPhone 8 sales to how Apple plans to monetize its augmented reality efforts.

Here’s what we found out:

Custom-fit Apple Watch band takes style to next level

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FFF
The adjustable length Button-Stud Apple Watch band fits virtually all wrist sizes — from the fleshiest to thinnest!
Photo: Form Function Form

Best List: Button-Stud Apple Watch Band by Form Function Form

Making Apple’s “most personal device ever” personal to you is super-serious business for one Florida purveyor of handmade leather goods.

Echoing the individuality of Apple Watch, Form Function Form takes customization to new levels in the design of its one-of-a-kind Button-Stud Apple Watch Band. This ingenious leather strap has 21 different size options, one of which is sure to fit even the thinnest or fleshiest of wrists. If it doesn’t, the company provides free size adjustments for the entirety of your life.

We’ve added seven new leather colors to the Watch Store lineup! Read on for my review:

How to teach Siri to pronounce a name correctly

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siri pronounce
Siri will teach you how to teach her.
Photo: Cult of Mac

Siri is great for setting reminders and timers, but in recent times Apple’s AI assistant has gotten a lot better at other things, too. For instance, sending iMessages to folks via your EarPods or AirPods, with your iPhone still in your pocket, works well enough that you can use it reliably all the time.

However, if Siri can’t pronounce the names of your contacts, then it’ll drive you crazy. Luckily, you can teach Siri to say these names correctly.

5 ways to quickly switch apps on iPad with iOS 11

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iOS 11 iPad Pro
The iPad is insanely flexible in iOS 11.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

In iOS 11, there are four ways to switch apps on the iPad. Five, if you count the old-school way: hitting the home button to return to the home screen, and tapping an icon to launch a different app. Some of these methods have been around a while, and have changed drastically in iOS 11. Others are brand new, and exclusive to the iPad. Today, we’re going to look at them all.

Today in Apple history: Steve Jobs dies at 56

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Steve Jobs, creator of the iPad and created on the iPad.
A portrait of Steve created by artist Jeremy Martin on his iPad.
Portrait: Jeremy Martin

October 5: Today in Apple history October 5, 2011: Apple co-founder Steve Jobs dies at the age of 56 in his home in Palo Alto, California.

Jobs’ official cause of death is respiratory arrest arising from complications related to a rare type of pancreatic cancer. He was diagnosed with the cancer eight years earlier, and officially stepped down from his role as Apple’s CEO in August 2011.

Google Pixel Buds bring wireless audio — and instant translation

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Google Pixel Buds
Pixel Buds bring Google's AI smarts to your ears.
Photo: Google

The most impressive feature of Google’s new Pixel Buds might not be their audio quality. As demonstrated during the Pixel 2 event today, they work as a real-time translation tool when combined with one of Google’s new phones.

“With Pixel Buds, I can use real-time Google Translate to have a natural conversation in 40 languages,” Google hardware product manager Juston Payne said during the event. “We’re letting you connect with the world around you in a more natural way, by rethinking how a headphone should work, connecting it to cloud-based machine learning and giving you access with the touch of a finger.”

Apple Watch 3 reviews: LTE is big, but battery life suffers

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Apple Watch Series 3
Is Apple Watch 3 worth the upgrade fee?
Photo: Apple

Early reviews of the Apple Watch Series 3 are now dropping ahead of its official debut on Friday, September 22. If you’re still in two minds about whether you should upgrade, they should help you make that all-important decision.

The general consensus is that LTE is a great addition to Apple’s wearable lineup. Just don’t expect a drastically different experience, and prepare yourself for some early teething troubles.