Apple Invites Media to ‘Hello Again’ October 27th Mac-Centric Event

The October event is expected to focus on the introduction of new Macs, headlined by a much-rumored and highly anticipated revamped MacBook Pro. According to rumors, the new MacBook Pro will feature the first redesign to the machine since 2012.

A thinner, lighter body is expected, with a wider, pressure-sensitive trackpad and a flatter MacBook-style keyboard with the same butterfly key mechanism. The MacBook Pro will be available in the same 13 and 15-inch size options, and will feature USB-C with USB 3.1 support for faster transfer speeds, Thunderbolt 3, and Touch ID.

Touch ID is expected to be built into a new OLED touch panel built into the top of the MacBook Pro, where it will replace the physical function key row. The OLED touch panel is said to feature contextual buttons that will change based on each app that’s in use. A leaked chassis suggests it will feature four USB-C ports and a headphone jack, but no HDMI port, no USB-A ports, no MagSafe connector, and no SD card slot.

A refreshed 13-inch MacBook Air with USB-C ports has also been rumored, but it is not clear if other internal changes will be made to Apple’s low-cost machine. It’s possible the 13-inch MacBook Air will be a standalone product going forward, based on rumors suggesting the 11-inch model will be discontinued.

Apple is also said to be working on updated iMacs with AMD graphics chips, which could be introduced at the event, and we might possibly see the debut of a rumored 5K Retina display with an integrated GPU. Apple discontinued the original Thunderbolt Display earlier this year, but an updated product has been in the works and it makes sense to release it alongside refreshed Macs if it’s ready to launch.

Apple’s Mac Pro and Mac mini are in dire need of refreshes, having been updated last in 2013 and 2014, respectively, but it is not clear if these machines will also see updates at the event.

Doctor Strange wallpapers for iPhone

Doctor Strange iPhone Wallpaper splash

The Wallpapers of the Week section is an ongoing list of curated images for iOS devices.

Another collection in the Marvel movie series, Doctor Strange is releasing this upcoming November 4, in what will most likely prove to be another hit movie in the comic bookinspired realm. Step inside to grab your wallpapers before the action hits theaters.

Doctor Strange wallpapers

Aniketman Doctor Strange iPhone Wallpaper










A jet black Apple Magic Keyboard & Magic Mouse to match iPhone 7

The jet black iPhone 7 might be a little more prone to scratches and fingerprints with its glossy finish, but that didn’t stop me from choosing the color for my iPhone this year. And I’m glad I did— it’s even more stunning in person than how it appears in photographs.  

The only thing missing was a jet black Apple Magic Mouse and Magic Keyboard to match my new iPhone…

With a little help from the folks over at Colorware, I decided to give Apple’s Magic Mouse 2 and Magic Keyboard the full jet black treatment. The company’s website let me configure the paint job, and I chose solid jet black with a glossy finish for both the mouse and keyboard. Alternatively, you can pick a matte finish and a number of other color options.

Colorware has been around for a while, but I never had the pleasure of feeling the quality of its paint process for myself. The good news is that unlike many other third-party treatments for Apple’s keyboard that I’ve tested, Colorware’s process didn’t leave the keys of the Magic keyboard or the distinctive glossy shell of the Magic Mouse feeling much different than how they come stock from Apple. That’s important, because other shortcut keyboards I’ve tested, for example, apply color in a way that can drastically change the way the keyboard feels for the worse.


The glossy finish on the Jet Black Magic Keyboard as you might expect feels a bit different than the matte finish that Apple puts on its keys, but it doesn’t noticeably change the typing experience much. The bottom of the keyboard remains white, but Colorware paints all the sides so you only see your color of choice when it’s lying flat. The company has matte color options too, and I might have opted for a black matte keyboard for both the feel and to avoid fingerprints if I wasn’t specifically going for the jet black look to match my new iPhone 7. 

The jet black Magic Mouse, on the other hand, looks and feels almost exactly the same as Apple’s stock mouse which already has a glossy (but white) finish. I didn’t notice any difference in performance, either, with the top of the mouse feeling identical to a stock Apple Mouse for all the usual gestures, clicking and scrolling. The paint job removes the Apple logo normally on top of the mouse, and you can optionally select two tone finishes with a different color on the bottom than the top.

I opted for an entirely jet black setup (the bottom of the mouse is pictured below).


The result is a glossy jet black paint job that doesn’t much take away from the design and feel of Apple’s accessories and looks almost identical to the iPhone 7, so what’s there to lose? You can’t send in your own Apple mouse and keyboard like Colorware does for other products, but you can configure a new set from their site for $199 and $119. That’s a $40 premium on the mouse over Apple’s usual $79 price tag and $99 on the keyboard.


It’s something I wish Apple itself would do for its products. Why are the new AirPods only available in white for example? I’m not the only one that’s noticed, however, as just last month someone rendered the AirPods in black, which in hindsight seems like a no-brainer alongside the new jet black iPhone 7. And it’s even something that myself and a lot of other people have mentioned when it comes to Mac accessories too…


A black Apple mouse and keyboard was something I hoped for when I bought the “new” black Mac Pro back in 2013, but so far Apple has mostly stuck with the aluminum and white color scheme for its accessories despite bringing new color options to MacBooks and other products.

Fortunately, Colorware remains a solid option until then…

The Magic Mouse and keyboard come with all the original Apple packaging and cables, and you can customize both with ton of different color options and finishes if jet black isn’t your thing. $119 for the Magic Mouse, and $199 for the Magic Keyboard. 9to5toys has 10% off with coupon code ‘9to5Toys’ for a limited time.


Float Shelf is an aluminum-matching iMac stand for decluttering your desk

[Update 10/14: Float Shelf is now available for all earlier iMacs, and Apple Thunderbolt & Cinema displays, including 17″/20″/21.5″ iMacs, 24″/27″ iMacs, 27″ Thunderbolt displays, 20″/23″ Cinema displays, and 24″/27″/30″ Cinema displays.

Float Shelf initially only supported newer 21.5″ and 27″ iMacs without SuperDrives. Now two additional versions which will fit older generations iMacs and Apple Thunderbolt & Cinema displays are available through the campaign.]

Earlier this year at CES I met the folks at Prism Designs who have some interesting new accessories for Apple products in development. The latest is called Float Shelf, which is an aluminum panel that attaches to the back of your iMac to provide a handy stand for decluttering your desk. Float Shelf is launching as a Kickstarter project today with nearly $9,000 (and climbing) in funding already, and we recently got a chance to go hands-on with Float Shelf for iMac…


Prism Designs describes Float Shelf as being machined “from a solid extrusion of aircraft-grade aluminum, a Float Shelf is strong enough to support ten pounds (4.5 kg).”

That’s practical for photos and other things you may want to display on your desk and usually fine for small speakers, routers, and similar accessories.

Float Shelf touts an “elegant tapered profile and anodized finish beautifully complement an iMac’s minimalist aesthetic.” In person, I was very impressed with just how Apple-like Float Shelf seemed.


There’s a single Prism Designs company logo on the bottom side of Float Shelf (out of sight) and no visible logos that would make it look unofficial. It matches the quality of the aluminum base that holds the iMac up with detailed curves and a solid feel.


Installation is very simple. Float Shelf just slides over the top of the iMac’s stand and down into place. A rubber padding prevents any aluminum from making contact to prevent any scratching, and Float Shelf settles firmly into place.


Once installed, Float Shelf looks like a natural extension of the iMac’s stand. While Float Shelf is clearly visible from the sides and back, it’s surprisingly out of sight from the front view.


How you might use Float Shelf depends on your iMac’s placement. For example, the back of the iMac would be facing a wall in my office so Float Shelf could hold speakers or a router that I might want to keep out of sight or off my desk. If you frequently use a SuperDrive or USB hub, for instance, this is a very useful place to leave either.


Testing the version for 27-inch iMacs, Float Shelf fully accommodates the iMac’s full range of tilt too. Even with a speaker loaded up, the iMac didn’t make contact at it’s most extreme recline. The same is true when tilting the iMac as far forward as possible.

Float Shelf had zero issues from installation, use, and removing during testing. Out of curiosity, however, I did test how level it was using the iPhone’s Compass app and saw a -2º readout when flat. For context, my desk showed a -1º reading from the same iPhone when laying flat.

You can lightly tap either side of Float Stand to adjust its placement during installation, however, so if a degree of balance is important to you keep that in mind. In practice, I wouldn’t have noticed any difference in how level it was from just eyeballing it during installation.


Overall, Float Shelf is a very solid product and one that would fit just fine in an Apple Store. The quality is top notch and it had no negative impact on the attached iMac. The Kickstarter is just getting started and funding is increasing quickly ($5000 added in the last two hours). 50 days to go with a funding goal of $25,000.

There are a few early bird pricing levels available starting at $75 for 21.5-inch iMac versions and $85 for 27-inch iMac versions. Delivery for both versions is estimated at April 2017. Having tested Float Shelf for iMac, I’m confident it will hit its funding goal and impress its backers.

Belkin’s new Lightning adapter lets you charge iPhone 7 and listen w/ headphones at the same time

How do you charge iPhone 7 and listen to music at the same time? If you’re using Lightning headphones, like the new EarPods that Apple bundles in the box with iPhone 7, Belkin’s new Lightning Audio + Charge RockStar adapter is currently the only option. The company sent one over this week for us to test…

With iPhone 7, Apple is transitioning users to Lightning and wireless headphones options. If you haven’t made the switch to wireless, or you’re perhaps holding out for Apple’s new truly wireless AirPods coming out later this month, you’ll either have to use the Lightning EarPods that come with iPhone 7 (or third-party Lightning headphones), or use your old 3.5mm headphones with the included Lightning adapter. 

If that is the case, Belkin’s new adapter will split your iPhone’s Lightning port into two, allowing you to continue listening with your Lightning headphones while charging your iPhone simultaneously. 


The adapter will look very similar to anyone that has owned Apple’s various Mini DisplayPort/HDMI/VGA and USB-C adapters, with a short 2.5-inch cable connecting the Lightning connector to the two Lightning inputs on the other end. It’s also of similar quality, with a fairly sturdy but stiff cable that, like lots of cables, might get damaged over time and repeated bending. 

The Lightning inputs, either when connecting Apple’s Lightning EarPods or its Lightning to 3.5mm adapter for use with old headphones, hold the Lightning connector snuggly without risk of it inadvertently becoming disconnected. And the physical media controls for volume and controlling calls on your Lightning headphones continue to work. 


In my tests, the Belkin adapter didn’t noticeably change the audio quality of Apple’s Lightning EarPods versus going directly into the iPhone. There was the odd occasion when going from one Lightning port on the adapter to the other caused audio to stop working until I unplugged and reconnected the headphones a second time, but that shouldn’t be something you run into in real world much. 

You can alternatively use the adapter with a Lightning to 3.5mm adapter, like the one that Apple includes in the box with iPhone 7 (pictured above). That will allow you to charge your iPhone 7 using one of the Lightning inputs, and use your old 3.5mm headphones with the other adapter into the other input. Like in our first test, using the secondary adapter with a pair of Apple’s 3.5mm EarPods doesn’t seem to noticeably change audio quality much compared to going direct into the iPhone 7 with the Lightning to 3.5mm adapter by itself.

The company says the adapter will also work if you’re plugging it into the Lightning port on Apple’s iPhone 7 Smart Battery Case.


What it doesn’t do?

Split audio. You can’t use both of the Lightning inputs for audio at the same time. If you plug two sets of Lightning headphones in, or 3.5mm headphones using a secondary adapter, audio will only play out of one side. But you can use either side for charging or listening. It would have been nice if this product could have doubled as an audio splitter for Lightning headphones, as that’s something that’s not currently available like it is for our old 3.5mm headphones

Should you buy it?

Currently the only alternative to this product is a charging dock with audio out. Apple’s new Lightning dock, for example, will let you charge your iPhone  7 and give you 3.5mm headphone jack for audio out, but that doesn’t help much if you want to use the Lightning headphones, like those that come with your iPhone 7, while also charging your device. There isn’t yet an adapter that lets you go from Lightning back to 3.5mm, something lots of MacBook and dock users have noticed after being unable to use their new Lightning EarPods with those devices. 

You can buy the Belkin Lightning Audio + Charge RockStar adapter now for $39.

Wallpapers of the week: the colorful sky

sky wallpaper splash mock up

Every Sunday the Wallpapers of the Week section, attempts to bring you incredible images from across the Internet. The images are formatted for the latest iOS devices, sometimes just iPhone or iPad, sometimes both. It is our intent to keep you with fresh images on a weekly basis, as the section name indicates.

Naturally, wallpaper quality, theme, and artistic value is subjective. Our images cannot impress everyone, every time. If you aren’t impressed with the week’s postings, you can be sure another set will be available the following week. 

Sky wallpapers











Love that new Mac smell? Now you can buy a candle that smells like a freshly-opened Apple product

I thought it was just me, but apparently I’m not the only one who tends to take a long extended whiff every time I crack open a new Apple product. There’s just something about the smell that’s so ridiculously pleasing to the senses.

Apparently the fine folks over at Apple accessory maker TwelveSouth feel the same, as it’s introduced a new candle that smells just like a freshly-opened Mac. Seriously, and there’s more…

The candle, which is simply entitled New Mac Soy Candle is available for purchase via TwelveSouth’s website for $24.00 with free shipping in the US. The candle is comprised of 100% soy wax, and contains hints of mint, peach, basil, and other wonderful-smelling ingredients. Those acquiring the candle can expect a burn time between 45 and 55 hours.


  • 100% Soy Wax
  • Scent Notes: Mint, Peach, Basil, Lavender, Mandarin and Sage
  • Hand Poured in Charleston, SC
  • Burn Time of 45-55 hours

If the idea of a Mac-scented candle doesn’t suit your fancy, then TwelveSouth is offering several other Mac-related novelty items as well. These include the iDrink Can Cooler Set, and the ⌘Q staring t-shirt, among other fine items.


But the New Mac Candle takes the cake. As someone who loves the smell of a new Mac, this candle is definitely on my wish list. I’ll be sure to do a full video unboxing, walkthrough, and review once I get my hands on it. There might be no new Macs (yet), but at least we have this candle to hold us over.