Next-gen AirPods will take a page out of AirPods Pro design playbook

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AirPods Pro with black background
Apple will ditch its original AirPods design completely with the next-gen model.
Photo: Apple

Apple’s third-gen AirPods will boast a design and compact system-in-package (SiP) solution similar to AirPods Pro, TF International Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo claims in his latest research note to clients.

Kuo suggests that the next-generation wireless earbuds will arrive in the first half of 2021. That would be approximately 18 months after Apple debuted the AirPods Pro design in 2019.

Fantastic to fugly: All the new app icons in macOS Big Sur

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macOS Big Sur on a MacBook Pro
What do you think of macOS Big Sur's new app icons?
Photo: Apple

WWDC 2020There’s a lot to love about macOS Big Sur, but one thing that’s dividing Mac fans is its redesigned app icons. Some look good enough to eat. Others are so ugly they’ll make you want to use Windows (not really). And some have simply lost some of their charm as a result of simplification.

What do you think of Apple’s new desktop icon designs so far? Check out all of them right here.

It’s official: Macs will start ditching Intel for Apple silicon this year

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Apple silicon will power future Mac desktops and laptops
Yesterday's Apple keynote was one of the best in years. And not just because it had great products announced.
Screenshot: Apple

WWDC 2020In a dramatic shift, Apple is giving up Intel chips. Instead, future Macs will run Apple silicon — processors engineered by Apple based on ARM designs.

While Apple revealed a general timeline for the transition at its developers conference on Monday, and unveiled software developers will need to get their applications ready, the first ARM Macs are still months away.

Leaked AirPower pictures suggest fix for Apple Watch charging issues [Updated]

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airPower
Will Apple finally be able to deliver on its promise?
Photo: Apple

Apple reportedly cracked one of the big problems with its ill-fated AirPower charging mat — specifically the question of how to charge the Apple Watch. That’s according to top Apple leaker Jon Prosser, who posted pictures on Twitter Thursday to prove his point.

“Remember how I said that the main problem was that current prototypes didn’t support Apple Watch?” Prosser wrote. “Yeah. Well. They got the Watch working.”

Apple could confirm Mac’s transition to ARM chips at WWDC 2020

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Full-screen works great on a MacBook.
The move we've all been waiting for is finally getting close.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

Apple reportedly will confirm the Mac’s transition to ARM chips during its Worldwide Developers Conference keynote on June 22.

The company has been using Intel processors inside the Mac since it ditched PowerPC chips in 2006. But speculation regarding a move to custom CPUs has been growing as Apple’s own chips have become incredibly powerful.

We may not see an ARM-powered Mac this year, however. Sources say Apple plans to announce the initiative, code-named Kalamata, at WWDC 2020. That would give developers time to adjust before the first ARM Macs arrive in 2021.

We talk AirPods with health features, and Apple TV+’s hits and misses, on The CultCast

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CultCast 442: AirPods with health sensors
Can you handle some hot, hot beta action?
Image: The CultCast

This week on The CultCast: AirPods with new sensors could be on the horizon, and that would fit perfectly with Apple’s always-on approach to health. Find out why we can’t wait for in-ear health trackers. Or for Apple to revamp the musty Messages app for Mac.

Plus, we discuss the aftermath of last week’s controversial chat with hotshot Apple leaker, Jon Prosser. And finally, Cult of Mac TV reviewer Scout Tafoya tells us why you probably ought to queue up Defending Jacob (and why you might want to skip Central Park).

Our thanks to Squarespace for supporting this episode. Easily create a beautiful website all by yourself, at Squarespace.com/cultcast. Use offer code CultCast at checkout to get 10% off your first purchase of a website or domain.

iOS 14 leaks come from early build obtained by hackers

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iOS 14 on an iPhone 11
Hackers reportedly got an iPhone 11 running iOS 14 months ago.
Photo: Cult of Mac

Details on iOS 14 started leaking out in February, with sources claiming to have a leaked copy of the next iPhone operating system. An investigation by Vice apparently confirms that researchers and hackers really got access to an iOS version more than half a year before its release.

Newton fans (including Woz!) meet online to geek out about long-discontinued device

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Organizer Paweł Piotrowski during the 2020 Worldwide Online Newton Conference.
Organizer Paweł Piotrowski during the Newton conference.
Photo: Paweł Piotrowski

A recent online conference dedicated to Apple’s much-maligned Newton drew dozens of fans from around the world — including Steve Wozniak and other Apple alumni.

After the 2020 Worldwide Online Newton Conference — the first gathering dedicated to the groundbreaking PDA in a decade — event organizer and Newton superfan Paweł Piotrowski marveled at the lasting impact of the handheld, which Apple discontinued almost 25 years ago.

“It is unbelievable that this old technology still connects people who make friendships because of their shared love of a small green device,” Piotrowski, who works as a college lecturer and live-stream technician in Edinburgh, Scotland, told Cult of Mac. “I’m glad this conference was able to build on that.”

Gorgeous iPhone 12 renders could spill new camera secrets

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Render shows iPhone 12 camera with three lenses
The basic iPhone 12 might have three camera lenses, just as the current iPhone Pro models do.
Photo: Pigtou/xleaks7

The 6.1-inch iPhone 12 will jump from dual to triple camera lenses, if an unconfirmed report is correct. New renders supposedly showing other details this handset came to light as well.

If the basic 2020 iPhone gets a big camera upgrade, this would further blur the line between the iPhone 12 and the more expensive iPhone 12 Pro models. Previous leaks indicate that every iOS device coming this fall will have 5G and an OLED screen.

5 reasons Apple still looks totally unstoppable

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Apple Q2 2020 earnings call: Apple still looks unstoppable.
Can nothing stop the Cupertino juggernaut?
Image: Lewis Wallace/Cult of Mac

While COVID-19 certainly overshadowed Apple’s most recent financial quarter, the company actually saw an annual increase in revenue, with the growth primarily coming from services and wearables.

Looking ahead, the company predicts that Mac and iPad sales will be strong. And CEO Tim Cook remains confidant about Apple’s future.