Rumor: iPhone 8 won’t ship with wireless charger, USB-C cable or headphone jack adapter

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 11, 2017

Japanese blog Mac Otakara claimed Saturday that iPhone 8’s rumored wireless charging feature may require a dedicated wireless charger accessory that customers would need to purchase separately. Citing reliable sources within Apple’s supply chain, the story goes on to say that iPhone 8 also won’t ship with the 3.5mm headphone jack adapter found in the iPhone 7 box nor will it come with a Lightning to USB-C cable as some have hoped. Read More

 

Following delay, Apple’s W1-equipped BeatsX are now available for purchase

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 10, 2017

Following an extended delay, Apple’s BeatsX earphones are now available for purchase from Apple.com, Apple’s retail stores and other retailers. The $150 earphones file as Apple’s most affordable audio product powered by the in-house designed W1 wireless chip, also found in the $160 AirPods, $200 PowerBeats3 and $300 Beats Solo3 headphones. The W1 chip enables seamless iCloud pairing with Apple devices and reliable wireless audio connection. BeatsX also work on non-Apple hardware as standard Bluetooth headsets.

The earbuds sport 8-hour battery life and come with a Siri-compatible RemoteTalk with built-in playback controls that let you control your music without using Siri. Read More

 

All BeatsX purchases come with three free months of Apple Music

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 9, 2017

Apple’s W1-equipped BeatsX earphones with a new flexible neckband design should be available to purchase this Friday in Black or White along with a pair of new color options: Gray and Blue. A few hands-on videos have gone live ahead of the official launch.

Comparing BeatsX to AirPods, YouTuber Jonathan Morrison has discovered that all purchases of BeatsX come with a code that customers can redeem for three free months of Apple Music (on top of Apple Music’s existing three-month free trial). Read More

 

BeatsX earphones will be available to buy this Friday, two new colors added

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 7, 2017

Corroborating yesterday’s report, CNET today said that the upcoming BeatsX earphones with the Apple W1 wireless chip and a new neckband design will be launching this Friday, February 10, in the United States. The earbuds will be available to purchase from Apple.com and company-owned retail stores. Aside from the existing Black and White color options, CNET has learned that the $150 accessory will be available in two additional finishes, Gray and Blue, following this Friday’s launch. Read More

 

Apple taps an old plug to ease connectivity and adapter woes with Lightning headphones

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 6, 2017

Apple will soon allow vendors who design MFi-certified accessories to build support for an obscure but already-existent port in order to ease some of the connectivity and adapter woes associated with Lightning-based headphones. 9to5Mac reported that the company might market UAC, an intermediary in headphone cables, as “Ultra Accessory Connector” (UAC).

Citing sources at Apple, The Verge adds that UAC is an old plug you might have seen with your Nikon DSLR camera rather than a proprietary new connector type from Apple. Apple’s ultimate goal with UAC, The Verge claims, is making Lightning and USB-C work better together rather than replacing them with a brand new I/O port. Read More

 

BeatsX earphones briefly showed as in stock in select Apple Stores ahead of launch

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 6, 2017

Following a recent delay of Beats X Bluetooth earphones with Apple-designed W1 wireless chip, they briefly showed as in stock in select Apple Stores this morning suggesting either an imminent launch (not very likely) or limited availability later this week (more likely). The earbuds use a flexible cord that lets them hang around your neck when not in use. Announced at the September 2016 iPhone 7 event, the accessory sports 8-hour battery life, a Siri-compatible RemoteTalk with built-in playback controls and a Lightning port for charging.

And with Fast Fuel technology, BeatsX customers will be able to get approximately two hours of playback time with a quick five-minute charge. Read More

 

How to install software update for your AirPods

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 3, 2017

Not unlike other accessories, Apple’s wireless earphones need a piece of software, called firmware, to function properly. A new AirPods firmware should install silently in the background without the user ever realizing it. Should the process fail, an update can be manually deployed on your AirPods as soon as Apple releases a new version.

In this step-by-step tutorial, we’ll show you how to deploy a new firmware for your AirPods manually, as well as check the version number of the firmware that’s currently running on your AirPods. Read More

 

Apple updates AirPods firmware to version 3.5.1

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 1, 2017

Apple today updated the firmware on AirPods. The company did not publish the official changelog at post time so we don’t know what this new firmware update provides in terms of new features aside from bug fixes and performance improvements, but we’ll make sure to update the article as soon as we find out more. The new software bumps the AirPods firmware from the initial version 3.3.1 to version 3.5.1. Read More

 

Don’t like the color of your AirPods? Have them repainted black to match your iPhone 7

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 31, 2017

Ever since AirPods made their long-expected albeit delayed debut, some Apple users—this author included—have been scratching their head over the inexplicable lack of a Jet Black edition. That’s why we’re thankful and excited for the BlackPods project.

Taking advantage of a proprietary three-phase coating system, BlackPods promises to give Apple’s first truly wireless earphones a luxurious scratch-resistant black finish that should match any Black, Jet Black or even Space Gray iPhone perfectly. Read More

 

Which W1 chip-equipped audio device should you get?

By Anthony Bouchard on Jan 31, 2017

Because Apple nixed the 3.5mm headphone jack from the bottom of the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, you either have to use the supplied Lightning dongle for backwards compatibility with your 3.5mm audio accessories, or you have to kick it up to the new age with a pair of wireless or Lightning-enabled audio devices instead.

When you don’t want to be bothered with the issue of charging your device at the same time you’re listening to audio with headphones or earbuds in, the obvious choice is to go wireless. While there are tons of options, only a few come with Apple’s brand new W1 chip, which supports the slick new Bluetooth pairing process. Among those are AirPods, Beats Solo3, and Powerbeats3.

If you’re in a predicament and can’t decide between the three then you should find this piece helpful, because I’ll be comparing the strengths and weaknesses of each from a variety of angles. Read More

 
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