2018 Mac mini review roundup: Pricey but impressively powerful

By

Apple Mac mini 2018
Apple packed a lot of power inside the new Mac mini's space gray case.
Photo: Apple

The Mac mini is back! It’s no longer the ultra-affordable entry to macOS it once was. But it’s still the cheapest Apple computer you can buy — and there’s a good reason for the price hike.

This year’s upgrade (the first since 2014) makes it the fastest and most impressive Mac mini yet. Intel’s latest chips, coupled with faster RAM, ample storage options and all the ports you need are squeezed inside its tiny shell.

Here’s what the reviewers are saying so far.

2018 MacBook Air review roundup: A beautifully big improvement

By

MacBook Air 2018
The original ultraportable is back with a bang.
Photo: Apple

The long-awaited MacBook Air update sports an all-new design and more powerful internals, but early reviews indicate there’s still room for improvement.

It’s also the most expensive MacBook Air to date. So, should you spend $1,199 on it when it lands in stores this week? Here’s what the first 2018 MacBook Air reviews have to say.

2018 iPad Pro review roundup: The best tablet money can buy

By

2018 iPad Pro
Have you ordered yours yet?
Photo: Apple

According to early reviews, you should absolutely rush out to get a new iPad Pro when the tablets go on sale Wednesday.

The iPad Pro was already the best tablet money could buy. And yet, Apple somehow made it even better with an improved design, an edge-to-edge Liquid Retina display, and an A12X Bionic chip that delivers unbeatable performance.

Don’t just take our word for it. See what the reviewers are saying below.

iPhone XR review: Why buy anything else?

By

iPhone XR review: With a great screen, cameras, battery life and Face ID, the iPhone XR is a nifty smartphone.
With a great screen, cameras, battery life and Face ID, the iPhone XR is a nifty smartphone.
Photo: Kristal Chan/Cult of Mac

The iPhone XR is typical Apple. It’s an entry-level phone with a bunch of premium features. Jony Ive just cannot cut corners, even if he wanted to. This is no plasticky, cut-rate phone built to meet a price point. It’s a primo phone with primo features (and a primo price tag, TBH). It just happens to be the cheapest new iPhone in Apple’s lineup.

The XR delivers everything customers care about: a big, beautiful screen; great cameras; long battery life; and Face ID.

The iPhone XR is arguably Apple’s most interesting smartphone of 2018 because of this slightly odd bundle of budget/premium features. It’s arguably a $1,200 phone in a $750 package.

For a chance to win a brand-new iPhone XR, enter our free giveaway here.

iPhone XR review roundup: Apple’s cheapest is one of its best

By

iPhone XR portrait mode
You should really consider the iPhone XR.
Photo: Apple

The first iPhone XR reviews are out just a few days before the handset makes its official debut, and one thing’s clear: This is one of Apple’s best smartphones to date.

Despite being a more affordable alternative to the iPhone XS, the iPhone XR is just as good in many areas, and even better in a few others. It makes some sacrifices to be more affordable, but it certainly lives up to the promises where it counts.

Here’s what the early reviews are saying so far.

Android’s new speed king still can’t keep up with iPhone

By

ASUS ROG Phone
The new Asus ROG Phone doesn't even come close.
Photo: Asus

Not even the fastest Android handset comes close to matching the performance of the iPhone.

The new Asus ROG Phone performs better than every other Android in early benchmark tests. It also scores higher than the latest iPad Pro lineup. When it comes to iPhone XS and XS Max, though, the gaming handset is way behind.

Galaxy Note 9’s speedy LTE barely beats iPhone XS

By

Open the iPhone XS Max and you'll see just $443 worth of components.
A new Intel modem buried in the iPhone XS Max brings 4G LTE performance that rivals, but doesn't beat, its top competitor's.
Photo: TechInsights

Last year, Samsung’s smartphones offered significantly faster cellular-data speeds than Apple’s, but a new study shows that the iPhone XS LTE performance almost catches up with its rivals’.

Apple’s latest flagship handsets include some long-overdue technologies that give them noticeably quicker LTE connections.

Is iPhone XS battery life really better?

By

iPhone XS gaming
Battery tests disagree with Apple's claims.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Apple promises that you’ll get better battery life if you upgrade to the iPhone XS or iPhone XS Max. Their cutting-edge A12 Bionic chips and power-efficient Super Retina displays should mean that they last longer than any other iPhone in between charges.

But is that really the case? One battery test has found that last year’s iPhone X actually has more stamina than its successor.

Don’t be fooled: iPhone XS is not a boring ‘S’ upgrade [Review]

By

iPhone XS and XS Max
Will the iPhone XS and XS Max save Apple's Q4?
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

If you ever watched schlocky ’70s sci-fi show The Six Million Dollar Man, you probably remember the opening sequence, during which a faceless narrator describes building a man who is “better than he was before. Better … stronger … faster.”

With the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max, Apple’s engineers achieved just that type of incredible transformation. They fabricated phones that look “normal,” like last year’s iPhone X. But, just like the shadowy geniuses who built the bionic man, Apple indeed made the iPhone X better, stronger and faster — thanks in large part to the A12 Bionic chip that powers the new phones’ most advanced functions. (Other hardware and software upgrades help, too.)

Just like Col. Steve Austin, the ace astronaut who got $6 million worth of bionic implants after a devastating crash, the iPhone X received massive internal upgrades to morph into the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max. While it looks like the same old (excellent) device, it’s actually far more fantastic and futuristic.

It’s a total bionic blast!