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Review: Hifiman Ananda On-Ear Planar Magnetic Headphones

You never forget your first. We’ve owned and reviewed a lot of headphones over the years — some good, some bad, some expensive, some cheap — but there are very few to which we have an emotional connection. The Hifiman HE500, an open-back planar magnetic headphone originally released in 2011 for $899, was our first true audiophile headphone. It is a large, heavy headphone, its headband is not comfortable, its cable connectors are annoying to use, and it requires a ton of power to drive properly. It’s perhaps the least convenient headphone we own, but we’ll never sell it — the HE500 is the headphone that introduced us (and our friends & family) to true hi-fi headphone sound. Today we’re trying out a headphone that seems to be, in some ways, a spiritual successor to the HE500 in a more advanced, more versatile package — the Hifiman Ananda. {/exp:char_limit}


News: Apple Watch may face import tariffs

The Apple Watch could end up seeing new tariffs as a result of the U.S.-China trade war, according to a new report by Reuters. According to the report, recent government rulings on tariffs have put at least the original Apple Watch in an obscure subcategory of data transmission devices — alongside several Fitbit activity trackers and Sonos speakers — that would have them falling under one of the 6,000 codes that have been included in President…


News: 1Password gets Markdown support in Secure Notes, iMessage stickers

AgileBits has updated 1Password for iOS adding support for using Markdown to create rich text in secure notes — a feature that came to 1Password for Mac earlier this year) — along with a new iMessage sticker pack and numerous other fixes and improvements. Markdown support allows users to create much more sophisticated secure notes complete with headers, bold and italic text styles, bulleted and numbered lists, and even tappable links, effectively…


News: Daily Deal: USB Wall Charger With Hidden Camera

For Friday’s iLounge Deal, you can get the USB Wall Charger With Hidden Camera for only $49.99 — that’s 61% off the regular price. Disguised as a simple USB charger, the LizaCam USB Wall Plug actually houses a hidden camera so you can discretely keep an eye on your living space right from your wall outlet. A companion iPhone app lets you tap into the camera’s HD feed via Wi-Fi, and audio and video can be recorded to a micro SD…


Review: Fibaro The Button HomeKit Controller

Fibaro has expanded on its lineup of HomeKit compatible sensors with The Button, a new Bluetooth based accessory that allows HomeKit users to easily activate accessories or trigger entire scenes by simply pushing a button, the second new accessory we’ve seen that leverages the controller support that Apple added to HomeKit with the release of iOS 11 last fall to provide easier control for home automation accessories tied into HomeKit. {/exp:char_limit}


News: Mophie releases new lineup of Powerstations with Lightning inputs

Mophie has announced a new lineup of power packs designed exclusively for Apple devices, featuring an Apple Lightning connector for power input as opposed to the more traditional micro USB port. The new powerstation models allow users to use a standard Lightning cable to recharge the battery pack, avoiding the need to pack an additional cable when travelling, since the same cable can also be used to charge an iPhone, iPad, or iPod directly. The new…


News: Wemo Mini adds direct HomeKit support via software update

Wemo has released a software update for is Wemo Mini smart switch that retroactively adds HomeKit support to the smart plug, CNET reports. What’s especially interesting about this update is that it represents the first sofware-only HomeKit implementations to arrive since Apple opened up the possibility last year at WWDC. Previously, HomeKit accessories have required a hardware security chip to integrate with Apple’s home automation ecosystem,…


News: Apple may be tightening USB Restricted Mode in latest iOS 12 beta

A new report from AppleInsider suggests that Apple may be tightening its new USB Restricted Mode even more, following a report last week that security researchers had found a loophole that could be used to work around the new security feature. While we have been unable to reproduce this in our own testing, according to AppleInsider, the fourth beta of iOS 12 has now removed the one-hour window during which a USB data device can be connected to an…


News: Daily Deal: Syncwire UNBREAKcable

For Thursday’s iLounge Deal, you can pick up the Syncwire UNBREAKcable for only $10.99 — that’s 42% off the regular price. This heavy-duty cable lives up to its name with a tinplate interior, a TPE jacket exterior, and wrapped internal wires so it won’t easily break or fray. Rated for more than 30,000 bends, this could be the last cable you’ll ever have to buy. Get the Syncwire UNBREAKcable now for only $10.99 ...


News: Doorbell category vanishes from Apple’s U.S. HomeKit page

Apple appears to have removed the “Doorbell” category entirely from its U.S. HomeKit accessories page, according to a report from 9to5Mac. The category previously featured the August Doorbell Cam with HomeKit support “coming soon.” August promised over two years ago to offer a retroactive update to is original August Doorbell Cam, however the company never said anything further about the feature after that, and the feature…


News: Higher-power iPhone charger will only be available initially with new iPhones

Following reports earlier this year that Apple is likely to begin including a higher-power, 18 watt USB-C power adapter with 2018 iPhone models, [Mac Otakara] (via 9to5Mac) now reports that due to supply constraints, the new adapter will only be available bundled with the actual iPhone models, and not initially available to be purchased separately. According to the Mac Otakara report, Apple’s manufacturing partners will be running at full capacity…


News: Instagram moving away from SMS two-factor authentication

Instagram is building a non-SMS-based two-factor authentication system in response to increased efforts by hackers, TechCrunch reports. Since phone numbers can be stolen by hackers with relative ease — as outlined by Motherboard, all it takes is convincing a carrier customer service rep to port the number to a new SIM card — Instagram accounts have been prime targets for hackers since a password can be reset with only an SMS message. To defend…


News: Apple has already stopped signing iOS 11.4, blocking downgrades
With last week’s release of iOS 11.4.1, Apple has already stopped signing the prior version, 9to5Mac reports, effectively preventing users from downgrading, despite the relatively minor changes in the iOS 11.4.1 release. Since downgrading is normally only an issue for users looking to jailbreak an iOS device, Apple’s move to quickly stop signing the older version may indicate that there are deeper security fixes under the hood in iOS 11.4.1.…


News: Daily Deal: Plantronics BackBeat Fit Wireless Sport Headphones

In our iLounge Deal for today, we’re offering the Plantronics BackBeat Fit Wireless Sport Headphones for only $59.99 — that’s 53% off the regular price. Lightweight, sweat-resistant, and noise-cancelling, these headphones are designed to filter outside distractions and fuel your workouts with Bluetooth audio for up to eight hours on a single charge. Their secure fit ensures they won’t get caught on your pumping limbs, and you can…


Review: Udoq Docking System

Although wireless charging is all the rage these days, that only helps users with the very latest iPhones, and — for now at least — doesn’t help you to charge your iPad. Hence, there’s still a call for traditional docking solutions, and if you’re in a family with multiple iPhones, iPads, and other portable electronic devices, finding places to charge them can sometimes be a problem. This is the need that udoq aims to address with its new all-in-one modular docking station that’s capable of handling multiple electronic devices all in one central location, all charging from a single power outlet. {/exp:char_limit}


News: Apple seeds fourth developer betas of iOS 12, tvOS 12 + watchOS 5

Apple has released a fourth set of betas to registered developers for iOS 12 and tvOS 12, following the usual two-week cycle after the release of the last betas earlier this month. iOS 12 beta 4 features a build number of 16A5327f and is accompanied by release notes outlining resolved issues from the last beta, including fixes to the Activity, Calendar, Phone, and FaceTime apps, as well as fixes to Screen Time, Siri, and Spotlight, among other smaller…


News: Former Apple engineer pleads not guilty of stealing trade secrets
Former Apple Project Titan engineer Xiaolang Zhang has pled not guilty on the charge of stealing trade secrets from Apple, Reuters reports. Zhang was formally indicted last week on a single count of trade secret theft on the allegation that he had stolen a 25-page blueprint for an autonomous vehicle circuit board. The indictment followed an investigation by Apple’s Product Security Team and the FBI reported last week, with an FBI agent filing…


News: Lumen releases world’s first pocket-sized ‘metabolism hacking’ device

Digital health and wellness company Lumen has announced a new pocket-sized device that promises to deliver weight management and performance data simply by analyzing a user’s breath. The new pocket-sized device monitors a user’s metabolism by analyzing the amount of CO2 and other gases exhaled by the user, sending the data to a companion iOS app that uses an AI engine to determine whether users are burning carbs or fat for energy and provide…


News: Daily Deal: KoolMAX Cooler

For Tuesday’s iLounge Deal, you can get the KoolMAX Cooler for only $289.99 — that’s 12% off the regular price. No party is complete without the KoolMAX Cooler. Simply put, this cooler has everything you need for all your adventures. With an unmatched Bluetooth stereo sound system, FM radio, recharging station, and a 48-can cooler capacity, KoolMAX will be the ultimate companion whether you’re partying in the backyard or going…


News: Instapaper parts ways with Pinterest to go it on its own

Popular offline reading and bookmarking service Instapaper has announced that it will be leaving Pinterest to go its own way, only two years after the social media platform acquired it in August of 2016. Instapaper was one of the first apps on the App Store back in 2008, developed by Marco Arment who is more recently best known for the very popular podcasting app, Overcast. Arment sold Instapaper to Digg parent company Betaworks in 2013, and the service…



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