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Updated: 9 hours 3 min ago

iPhone XS benchmarks: The fastest gets faster (and lasts longer, too)

Wed, 09/26/2018 - 06:00

The A11 Bionic processor in the iPhone X and iPhone 8 made those phones the most powerful smartphones of 2017. While it’s difficult to directly compare performance between Android and iOS devices, even the fastest Android phones of today haven’t quite caught up to Apple’s best from last year.

Now, the A12 Bionic makes the iPhone XS even faster, widening the performance gap between Apple and everyone else. The iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max are clearly the fastest iPhones ever made, which also makes them the fastest phones ever made. Apple has managed to wring a little more battery life out of them, too.

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MacOS Mojave: What is Dynamic Desktop and how to use it

Wed, 09/26/2018 - 03:03

It’s easy to lose track of time when you’re working all day in front of your Mac. Before you know it, it’s the end of the day. With Dynamic Desktop, your Mac’s desktop picture adjusts accordingly with the time of day, so you have a better idea of how the day is going.


Here are the instructions for activating Dynamic Desktop in macOS Mojave.

How to turn on Dynamic Desktop in macOS Mojave

1. Click on the Apple menu and select System Preferences.

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MacOS Mojave: What is desktop Stacks and how to use it

Wed, 09/26/2018 - 03:02

The desktop is a convenient place to save files. You can get to the file you need quickly; it’s right there on the desktop, and you don’t need to sift through folders. Problem is, the desktop can get very cluttered, and your access efficiency diminishes every time you save a file to the desktop without removing one.

The new desktop Stacks feature in macOS Mojave helps organize the clutter. (It’s actually not a brand-new feature; Stacks made its first appearance in the OS X Dock. You can choose to have a group of items in the Dock appear as a Folder or as a Stack. The desktop implementation is new, however.) As the name implies, Stacks puts your desktop files into stacks. When you click on a stack, it expands to show the individual files. You can also scrub through a stack of files to find the one you need.

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iOS 12 and macOS Mojave: What is Continuity Camera and how to use it

Wed, 09/26/2018 - 03:01

Over the years, the task of digitizing printed photos and documents has gotten a lot easier. Scanners used to be main tool for the job, but now we have smartphone cameras. With Continuity Camera, you can use your iPhone or iPad to directly import photos or documents scans (like receipts) into a file that you’re creating on your Mac.

How it works: Continuity Camera connects your Mac to your iOS device. You can then take a photo or snap a picture of a document, and that image is then automatically imported into the file you are working on. It’s that simple.

Continuity Camera’s requirements
  • Mac: macOS Mojave. iOS device: iOS 12.
  • Currently, Continuity Camera works with the Mojave bundled apps like Notes, TextEdit, and Mail. It also works with Apple’s Pages and Keynote. For your favorite third-party apps, look for updates from the developers.
  • The Mac and iOS devices need to be logged into the same Apple ID.
  • The Mac and iOS devices need to be on the same Wi-Fi network.
How to take photos using Continuity Camera in macOS Mojave and iOS 12

Here’s how to use Continuity Camera to insert a photo into a document you’re creating on a Mac. Pages is used in the instructions here, and they’re the same steps for any of the bundled Apple apps, such as Notes, Mail, and TextEdit.

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MacOS Mojave: How to customize and markup screenshots and screen recordings

Wed, 09/26/2018 - 03:00

Apple insists that iOS and macOS will never morph into the same digital beast, but at least it’s increasingly willing to share the most useful features between each platform.

Consider, for instance, the ability to markup screenshots in iOS 11. It quickly became one of our favorite tools on the iPhone, as you could quickly circle or highlight specific passages in a screenshot of an email or pinpoint a location in a photo and then send that file off to a friend in an iMessage.

With macOS Mojave, that same great feature comes to Apple’s desktop system, along with a pile of Mac-appropriate enhancements (many of which are familiar from Preview). Here’s how to use it.

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Join us on Wednesday, Sep. 26, at 10 a.m. Pacific

Tue, 09/25/2018 - 15:00

We’ve had the new iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max for a few days. We’ll talk about our experiences with the new phones. We also respond to your comments and questions for Leif Johnson, Roman Loyola, Adam Patrick Murray, and Michael Simon in the Macworld Podcast, episode 623.

Watch us live

The Macworld Podcast broadcasts live on the internet on Wednesdays at 10 a.m. Pacific. You can watch on Twitter via Periscope or on the Macworld YouTube channel.

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Twitter poll: Have you noticed better cellular speed with your new iPhone XS?

Tue, 09/25/2018 - 14:59

Apple’s iPhone and iPad users will now be able to add 1TB of external storage with LaCie’s new Fuel wireless hard drive.

LaCie’s Fuel allows users to preserve storage on their mobile devices by moving large files like movies onto the wireless hard drive. Priced at $199, the drive will be available soon, LaCie said.

The files from the drive can be accessed while on the go. Users will be able to upload or download files remotely, effectively creating a personal cloud with Fuel serving as the central repository of data.

The drive has a battery that can provide a 10-hour run time on a single charge, and the product can act as another access point to an existing Wi-Fi network. It can also serve as a router for a wireless network. The Fuel drive is AirPlay compatible, and users will also be able to stream movies from the drive to TVs hooked to Apple’s TV device and mirror that content on other iOS devices.

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How to create a bootable macOS Mojave installer drive

Tue, 09/25/2018 - 13:30

Whenever Apple releases a new version of macOS, I like to create a bootable USB installation drive. I test different Macs, and when I need to upgrade those machines, it’s a lot more efficient to plug in the USB installer drive and run the installer, than to log into the App Store, download the 6GB OS installer, and then run it.

Because it’s so easy to create an external installation drive, it’s my preferred means of installing the OS. I keep it around for those time when I would rather use the drive than rely on booting in Recovery mode.

In this article I’ll go over the different ways you can create a bootable macOS Mojave installation drive. But before I give instructions on how to create the drive, I’ll go over the items you’ll need and how to get them.

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Get a HomePod for $50 off at Costco today

Tue, 09/25/2018 - 12:06

Luckily for all of us, the HomePod is no longer quite the disappointment it once was. Plug it in today, and you’ll find that it can make calls, announce your calendar appointments for the day, identify songs by their lyrics, and more. And, of course, it sounds great. It’s now a little easier to justifying paying the price Apple expects. That also means Costco’s current $50 discount for membersRemove non-product link sounds super appealing. Take advantage of it today, and you’ll get a space gray HomePod for just $305 (since you'll still have to pay $5 for shipping).

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Amazon's awesome Sabrent hub sale will add up to 10 USB ports to your PC or Mac for cheap

Tue, 09/25/2018 - 10:53

No matter which platform you use, we all have one thing in common: our PCs never have enough USB ports. Whether you need to charge or transfer files, Amazon has four different options from Sabrent on sale todayRemove non-product link, so you'll be able to add as many ports as you need for super cheap.

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What to do when Photos for Mac says your external drive uses an unsupported format

Tue, 09/25/2018 - 09:00

Macworld reader Carah received an error messages from Photos in macOS I’d never seen before—but which is fortunately easily diagnosed and solved.

Carah was trying to free up space on her internal disk drive, as it was nearly full, so followed instructions in another Mac 911 column on copying Photos libraries to an external drive.

After completing the copying and launching Photos with the Option key held down to select her new external library, Photos gave her an error on selection: “The library ‘library name’ is stored on a drive that uses an unsupported disk format. To access this library, copy it to the internal drive on your Mac or to a drive that uses a supported format.”

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What Apple’s ‘background tag reading’ NFC update means for you and business

Tue, 09/25/2018 - 08:00

Apple showed off many new features of the new iPhone during its “Gather round” event earlier this month, but there’s one major update that didn’t make it to the main stage. It was an update to the iPhone’s NFC (near field communication) support, the tech that lets you scan your iPhone to checkout through Apple Pay.

Before iOS 12, users of NFC-equipped iPhones needed to open an app to access this feature. But the day after its event, Apple told developers that iOS 12 would support NFC “background tag reading” on the new iPhones, meaning once these iPhones are unlocked after booting up they constantly scan for NFC tags.

With the new NFC implementation, as long as an iPhone XS or XR is within 1.6-inches of an NFC tag, it displays a notification you can tap to open an app or link in Safari.

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Why Fitbit’s biggest advantage over Apple Watch Series 4 is sleep tracking, not fitness

Tue, 09/25/2018 - 07:56

The Apple Watch Series 4 is easily the best smartwatch ever made. It’s got GPS, LTE, a near edge-to-edge screen, an EKG sensor, and fall detection—all features no competitor can match.

But all of that functionality comes at a cost, and I’m not talking about the $500-plus price tag. The new Apple Watch still only gets around 18 hours of battery life, all but assuring that anyone who buys one will want to invest in a nightstand charger. Like the iPhone, Apple is seemingly content to get users through a busy day wearing its watch, and anything beyond that isn’t a priority.

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How to watch the MLB playoffs and the World Series without cable

Tue, 09/25/2018 - 07:30
Don't miss a postseason pitch, read our cord-cutter's guide to the 2018 MLB playoffs and the World Series.

Small wonder: Suddenly missing the iPhone SE

Tue, 09/25/2018 - 07:00

It is a day that ends in “y” so it must be time once again to second-guess Apple’s strategy.

Writing for the very nice people over at Business Insider (motto: “We are literally inside a business right now!”), Dave Smith sagely advises that “Apple made a big mistake by killing its smallest and most affordable iPhone.” (Tip o’ the antlers to Nick.)

Small phones, big mistakes.

Last week, amid the hoopla surrounding the new iPhones, Apple quietly killed off one of the best smartphones it's ever made: the iPhone SE.

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MacOS Mojave: What is Dark Mode and how to use it

Tue, 09/25/2018 - 03:03

In macOS Mojave in Dark Mode, dark colors are used in place of light colors in the user interface. For example, in Dark Mode the menu bar at the top of the Mac UI is no longer white with black text. Instead, it’s inverted so the bar is a dark color and the the text is white. That dark theme is carried throughout the UI.

For some, Dark Mode may not seem like a big deal, but Dark Mode has many benefits. The higher contrast of text makes it easier to read documents and menu items. Using dark colors instead of white reduces glare, which in turn reduces eye fatigue. Most importantly, Dark Mode can improve your ability certain aspects of video and photos, such as color and detail.

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MacOS Mojave: How to use Gallery View and view metadata in the Finder

Tue, 09/25/2018 - 03:02

With macOS Mojave, the Finder gets a few welcomed improvements that make it easier to work with your files. The new Gallery View makes it easier to identify a file, as well as look at metadata for a photo—you no longer have to launch an app to see this information.

There's also a new Quick Actions feature that is covered in a separate article.

Here’s how to use Gallery View and see metadata.

How to use Gallery View in the macOS Mojave Finder

1. In the Finder, open a new Finder window. If storage devices appear on your desktop, you can double click a device icon. Or in the menu bar go to File > New Finder Window, or press Command-N.

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MacOS Mojave: What are Finder Quick Actions and how to use them

Tue, 09/25/2018 - 03:01

When you’re sifting through a set of files on your Mac—say, photos your just transferred from your iPhone—you’ve probably noticed little things that you want to adjust or fix in those files, but you don’t want to go through what seems like an ordeal of opening the file in an app just for a simple tweak. The new Quick Actions feature in macOS Mojave is here to help. It gives you tools to perform quick edits to your files, right in the Finder, so you don’t have to launch an app.

Your Finder windows need to have Preview turned on to see the Quick Action tools. To do this, open a Finder window and in the menu bar select View > Show Preview, or press Shift-Command-P. Quick Action tools appear in the lower right of the Finder window, under the Preview. The tools available with Quick Actions vary based on the file type.

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Waze now supports Apple CarPlay

Mon, 09/24/2018 - 14:57

When it comes to map apps, Google Maps holds the crown. Apple’s Maps updates are substantial and welcome, but are rolling out slowly. 

But when it comes to driving navigation, there’s just no beating Waze. The popular app is laser-focused on taking you from point A to point B in your car, and uses a huge community of users to report hazards, accidents, speed traps, cameras, and more. Waze’s combination of great map and traffic data and community conditions reports make it an unbeatable navigation app when you’re behind the wheel.

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MacOS Mojave: Apple releases the latest version of its Macintosh operating system

Mon, 09/24/2018 - 13:00

Apple next major revision to its Macintosh operating system is called macOS Mojave. The company revealed the update at its 2018 Worldwide Developers Conference in June, and it features several user interface improvements to make the experience on the Mac better.

In this FAQ, we’ll give you the general details on macOS Mojave: When it will be release, what Macs are compatible, etc. We’ll add more details to this article as they become available.

Editor’s note: Updated 9/24/18 with the release information for macOS Mojave 10.14.

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