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Review: Mytek Brooklyn Digital-to-Analog Converter

Some years ago, the electronics market could be cleanly divided into "professional" and "consumer" gear. Consumer devices were cheaper and prettier, but their pro counterparts did more and were more reliable. Consumers then started to develop a taste for pro-level gadgets, regardless of whether they "needed" the extra power. Manufacturers responded by creating a new class of device — the "prosumer" model — which has grown in popularity to the point that nobody really questions whether high school kids "need" Macbook Pros. The Brooklyn DAC from MyTek is a little like the Macbook Pro in that it is well-designed, feature-packed, beautiful, and expensive. We think it's awesome.

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Apple and Nokia settle patent dispute

Apple and Nokia have announced a resolution to the patent dispute that began late last year. In addition to settling all litigation related to the intellectual property dispute, the two companies have also agreed to a multi-year patent license, which will see Nokia providing certain network infrastructure products and services to Apple, and Apple returning Nokia’s digital health products (formerly Withings) to its store shelves. The two companies are also exploring future collaboration in digital health initiatives, with regular summits between their top executives to maintain the business relationship. Details of the agreement remain confidential, however Nokia will receive an up-front cash payment from Apple, with additional payments made during the term of the agreement.

Cases and renderings show possible new 10.5” iPad Pro design

A new series of case images tweeted by prolific leaker Benjamin Geskin (via MacRumors) show the possible physical design of the upcoming 10.5” iPad Pro. The cases include the expected cutouts for the Lightning connector, speakers, and microphone, as well as a cutout for a 3.5mm headphone jack; however the camera cutout suggests a camera with a vertically aligned flash. Cases for an upcoming 12.9” iPad Pro were also shown, and Geskin adds that no new iPad mini is expected this year, confirming rumours last week that Apple may be planning to discontinue the smaller tablet. Geskin also shared several mockups and renderings with MacRumors of what the new 10.5” iPad Pro might look like based on the case designs that he’s seen. In his tweet, Geskin also claims that the 10.5” iPad is “100% confirmed. Already in mass production,” supporting claims made last week by KGI analyst Ming-Chi Kuo that there’s an “over 70 percent change” that the new 10.5” iPad Pro will see its unveiling at WWDC in two weeks.

Daily Deal: ExoMount Universal Smartphone Car Mounts

In our iLounge Deal for today, you can get the ExoMount Universal Smartphone Car Mounts for only $22.95 — that’s 23% off the regular price. Stop fiddling with your iPhone while driving, and if you must look at it, keep your hands on the wheel with the ExoMount Ultra, which uses the super strong ExoSeal suction cup technology to stick to any dash or windshield, rotating 360 degrees so you can view your iPhone any way you’d like.

Get the ExoMount Universal Smartphone Car Mounts now for only $22.95

Daily Deal: Peach Emoji Power Bank

For Monday’s iLounge Deal, you can pick up the Peach Emoji Power Bank for only $19.99 — that’s 20% off the regular price. Who said phone chargers couldn’t be cute? This peach emoji-shaped power bank packs a battery wallop, with a 2,600mAh battery capacity that is enough to fully charge a smartphone. Know you won’t have time to charge your phone (or any other USB-powered device for that matter) for awhile? Carry this little guy in your pocket and give yourself a boost whenever you need it.

Get the Peach Emoji Power Bank now for only $19.99

Apple denies responsibility for in-flight Beats headphone explosion, points to third-party batteries

Apple has pointed to third-party batteries as the cause of a woman’s Beats headphones exploding on a plane in February, according to a report by the Australian Associated Press. The woman, who wishes to remain anonymous, was sleeping on a flight from Beijing to Melbourne when she was woken up by the sound of an explosion and a burning sensation on her face. The woman’s face, hands, and hair were burned, and she sought compensation from Apple for the replacement of the headphones and clothing which was ruined as a result of the incident. In a statement released by the woman’s lawyers, an Apple representative stated that the investigation “indicated the issue was caused by a third-party battery.” The woman had purchased a standard set of AAA batteries in Australia, and noted that she was extremely disappointed with Apple’s decision as the headphones require batteries, however Apple does not specify a specific brand of batteries anywhere on the headphones or their packaging.

Report: Tim Cook testing Apple Watch connected blood glucose monitor

Apple CEO Tim Cook has reportedly been field testing a blood sugar monitoring device attached to an Apple Watch, CNBC reports. According to a source, Cook was spotted at the Apple campus wearing a prototype glucose-tracker on the Apple Watch, pointing to Apple’s continuing efforts to add more advanced health monitoring capabilities to the wearable device. A report last month revealed that Apple has been ramping up its efforts to create a new type of sensor that could non-invasively and continuously monitor blood glucose levels. During his visit to the University of Glasgow in February, Cook obliquely shared that he had been “wearing a continuous glucose monitor for a few weeks” and had only removed it before leaving for Scotland, although he didn’t specifically mention it as an Apple initiative, but explained that it was helping him to understand how his blood sugar levels were responding to the foods he was eating, and spoke generally about Apple’s commitment to health and the struggles faced by people with diabetes.

Ford releases SYNC 3 update with CarPlay support for 2016 models

Ford has announced an update to its SYNC 3 system that brings support for CarPlay to its model-year 2016 vehicles. Ford included CarPlay in most of its 2017 models last summer, including the Fiesta, Focus, Fusion and Mustang, SUVs including the Escape, Explorer and Expedition, F-Series trucks and Ford’s electrified vehicles. This latest update means that 2016 model owners with a SYNC 3 system will be able to take advantage of CarPlay support as well, although Ford notes that they may also need to purchase a USB hub upgrade from a Ford dealer. Customers can install the update by downloading the software from owner.ford.com and loading it onto a USB drive or visiting a dealership. For the first time, customers with Wi-Fi enabled vehicles will also be able to automatically receive the update wirelessly using their designated Wi-Fi network by enabling Automatic System Updates.

Daily Deal: Exocharge 3-Port USB Car Charger

In our iLounge Deal for today, you can get the Exocharge 3-Port USB Car Charger for only $14.99 — that’s 25% off the regular price. Keep all of your passengers’ devices fully powered up with this handy car charger that can charge up to three devices simultaneously, two at fast 2A charging speeds.

Get the Exocharge 3-Port USB Car Charger now for only $14.99

Tip of the Day: Sharing HomeKit Access

Once you’ve started to deploy more than a couple of HomeKit accessories in your home, you’ll likely reach a point where you’ll want to ensure that your other family members can also access and control them. Fortunately, Apple has considered this in the design of HomeKit, and in fact has even improved these features with iOS 10 and tvOS 10.

To add a user to your HomeKit home from your iPhone, simply open up the “Home” app and tap the arrow in the top-left corner. On this screen you’ll see the name of your home, a listing of any of your Home Hubs, and an “Invite…” button. Tapping this allows you to invite anybody with an Apple ID to share control of your home, and if you’re using iCloud Family Sharing, the app will even helpfully offer up your list of family members to get you started. Note that if you’re managing more than one Home, each one gets its own sharing list, so you can let the whole family control the lights in your main home, while perhaps only allowing your spouse or partner access to the cottage.…

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