Should we be thankful for Apple in 2016? [Friday Night Fights]


Mmm. Apple turkey.
Photo: Ste Smith/ Tuchodi

Thanksgiving might be over, but with a new year right around the corner, it’s time to think about whether we should be thankful for Apple in 2016.

Friday Night Fights bugIt hasn’t exactly been a spectacular year for Cupertino, but it certainly hasn’t been boring. We’ve gotten a new iPad Pro, iPhone 7 with big improvements, a greater Apple Watch, and the new MacBook Pro with Touch Bar and Touch ID.

But was all that enough? Is this a year you’ll look back on fondly as an Apple fan, or is it one to forget? Join us in this week’s Friday Night Fight as we decide whether we’ve been thankful for Apple over the past 12 months.

Target sold one iPad per second on Thanksgiving


iPad mini is the weak link in Apple's tablet business.
iPads were flying off the shelves on Thursday.
Photo: Buster Hein/Cult of Mac

We’ve written about how the overwhelming majority of Thanksgiving mobile shopping was done using iOS devices, but Apple devices themselves were (perhaps unsurprisingly) highly in demand during last week’s big U.S. holiday.

According to one report, Target managed especially impressive sales of both iPads and Apple Watches during Thanksgiving — with Apple’s debut wearable device proving very popular, while iPads sold at the rate of one per second throughout Thursday.

78% of Thanksgiving mobile shopping took place on iOS devices


Apple raked in the cash last quarter.
iOS users are more likely to shop online than Android owners.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Early Thanksgiving online sale reports suggest that Apple devices were once again the platform of choice for people doing their holiday shopping.

How dominant were Apple devices in this category? Well, according to analytics firm Custora E-Commerce Pulse, iOS devices accounted for a massive 78.3 percent of all mobile e-commerce orders in the U.S., compared to 21.5 percent for Android devices.

Has Apple given us much to be thankful for this year?


Are you pleased with what Apple delivered this year?
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

You might be sick of the sight of Turkey by now, but you can’t spend enough time being thankful. The big question we have is: Should we be thankful to Apple for the lineup it has delivered in 2015, or was this a year to forget?

Friday-Night-Fights-bug-2Apple certainly hasn’t been slow this year; we’ve had the Apple Watch, Apple Music, iPhone 6s with new technologies like 3D Touch, the new Apple TV, and the giant iPad Pro. But will any of these things stand out as smash-hits in a decade?

Join us in this week’s Friday Night Fight between Cult of Android and Cult of Mac as we battle it out over these questions and more!

The absolute best deals: Thanksgiving vs. Black Friday vs. Cyber Monday


Confused at all the different retail promotions lately? Here's how to tell them apart (and find the best deals).
Confused at all the different retail promotions lately? Here's how to tell them apart (and find the best deals).
Photo: DealNews

Black Friday is held up as the ultimate shopping day, but Thanksgiving actually offers more awesome deals. Of course, there are great sales to be found throughout the Black Friday season, with Cyber Monday deals adding their fair share of savings to the mix.

However, if you’re looking for a specific type of product, it’s hard to know whether Thanksgiving, Black Friday, or Cyber Monday will give you the best chance to score that bargain.

Because most shoppers will be looking for deals on these three days specifically, we gathered data from the past four years of Thanksgivings, Black Fridays, and Cyber Mondays to determine which day offered the best sales on any given product category. From TVs to toys to tablets, we’ve got the skinny on when you’re most likely to find a killer price low on anything.

But before we get to the results, let’s discuss the amorphous blob of time that Black Friday has become.

9 things Tim Cook has to be thankful for


Tim Cook bores the world with even more amazing Apple products. Yawn. Photo: Apple
Tim Cook has a lot to be thankful for. No wonder he looks happy. Photo: Apple

In between dessert and the traditional food coma on the couch, Thanksgiving offers everyone a great opportunity to take stock of the past year’s accomplishments.

When it comes to looking back at the previous year, sure you can stew over your failures and missed opportunities, but that’s for losers. And coming off one of Apple’s most successful years in history, Tim Cook is no loser.

So what’s Apple’s CEO going to be thinking about when he sits back in a carbohydrate-induced daze? Here are our best guesses.

ICYMI: Gift guides for everyone on your list


All the gifts you need for those special someones. Cover design: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac
All the gifts you need for those special someones. Cover design: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

We’re a bit early this week, but wanted to make sure you got all the Cult of Mac goodness in one fine compilation in time for your four-day weekend. Dig in and enjoy a whole slew of gift guides, including those for the women in your life, that special college student, and outdoor adventurers. Plus? Pro tips on surviving that modern ordeal of American culture: Thanksgiving. All that and some of the week’s biggest Apple-related news are ready for you right now. Just download and enjoy!

Dig into Cult of Mac Magazine November 28 Edition, Free on iTunes

7 pro tips to help you conquer Turkey Day



Are you prepared for Thanksgiving?

We’re just hours away from Thanksgiving and all the family, turkey, football, and drama that comes with it, whether you’re prepared or not.

To help you get ready for the big day and dominate the feast, Cult of Mac has come up with 7 pro tips that will help you become a better cook, entertain the family, and most importantly, maintain your sanity.

Photo: Tim Sackton/Flickr

Prepare food smarter

Planning to pack on the pounds during tomorrow’s feast? PrepPad will help you cook and eat more responsibly by weighing your food and then connecting to a database of 350,000 items to tell you how much you should eat based on your nutritional profile. Combined with its companion iPad app, the Prep Pad becomes a full scale cooking platform, giving you precise info on how many carbs and calories you’re cramming down your throat. $149.95

Take cooking lessons

Take your Thanksgiving feast to an all-new level with the App Store’s cornucopia of apps that will turn you into a Master Chef in no time. Epicurious has all the recipes you’ll need, while Substitutions will help you avert disaster if someone forgets an important ingredient. Bon Apetit has a special Turkey Day app out. Butterball will help you roast your bird to perfection. And if you’re dreading making a last dash to the grocery store, you can just use Instacart and get all the fixings delivered to your front door.

Tap into the power of the cloud

Belkin brings the power of the cloud to your kitchen with its internet-connected crockpot that can be turned on or off remotely, so you can keep your flag football game going without worrying about when you need to get home. The slow cooker crockpot comes with an iOS and Android app that lets you adjust the timer or temperature from anywhere. And it sports manual controls on the front for those that like to keep it old school. $129.99

Don't burn the bird

You can take some of the stress out of cooking a 30 pound turkey by using iDevice’s kitchen thermometer. It comes with a two-probe digital meat thermometer and accompanying app. Just thrust one probe into your bird and the app will alert you when the meat reaches optimal temperature. - $81.49

Get your game on

Spending the entire day with your entire family can be a torture sentence, but some good games can make the time pass so much quicker. We’ve been absolutely addicted to Vainglory the past week, and with it’s Team mode, you can recruit your cousins or in-laws to band together and crush the Kraken.

If MOBAs aren’t your thing, Space Age is one of the best games of the month. Kingdom Rush Origins will also keep you busy for a few hours, and if you just need a great one minute game, download CrossyRoad.

Entertain the guests

Once the turkey’s been devoured and half the family has dropped into a tryptophan coma, it’s prime time to fire up the Apple TV and watch some movies (unless you’d rather watch crapass football). Pretty much everyone is going to love rewatching Guardians of the Galaxy now that it’s on iTunes. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes also dropped this week, but if you’d like to learn how your food went from the fields to your feast, check out Food Chains - a powerful new documentary about the farmworkers who pick your food.


Capture the magic moments

You're going to snap a ton of pictures tomorrow. The iPhone’s camera app is great, but to unleash your camera's full potential try out Manual to capture your Thanksgiving festivities. Manual gives users full control of image exposure with DSLR-like controls that let you tweak the shutter speed, ISO, white balance, focus and exposure compensation, to help you bring out better pictures than the iPhone’s automatic camera.

For editing pictures, we swear by VSCO as the best all-around photography app. It’s got advanced camera controls and its editing features and filters are hard to top. For video, switch it up by using Hyperlapse to create buttery smooth video of all the action.

Cult of Mac Holiday Gift Guide: Mac Lovers’ Edition [Updated]


mac lovers UPDATEd

Believe it or not, Black Friday has already come and gone. Pretty soon the Christmas season will begin, and we’ll mark this midwinter festival by getting together with friends and family and continuing to drink and eat far too much.

Meanwhile, we also buy gifts for those same friends and family members, whether they want them or not. Luckily, we’re here to help, and if you follow our festive advice, your gifts just might make it into the “wanted” category.

From now until Christmas, Cult of Mac will be putting together holiday gift guys full of ideas for the special ones in your life, no matter what their interests or your budget. Today, we’re looking at gifts for Mac lovers (not Mac fighters).