Apple’s Macs come with Thunderbolt ports that are USB-C compliant. Depending on the model you choose, a new MacBook Pro comes with two or three of these ports. A pair of them are included in the new MacBook Air. Two Thunderbolt/USB 4 ports are included in a 24-inch iMac, and some models also have two USB-C ports. You most likely have devices that use USB-A, Thunderbolt 1, Thunderbolt 2, DisplayPort, HDMI, or another type of connection. What is the best way to link these devices? With the use of an adaptor.
If you’re planning on purchasing a new 24-inch iMac, MacBook Pro, or MacBook Air, make sure you budget for the necessary adapters. Except for a power adapter, Apple doesn’t include any in the box.
A combo dock, such as the Satechi Slim Aluminum Type-C Multi-Port Adapter ($60 on Amazon), is your best bet. It has a USB-C pass-through port, two USB 3.0 ports, and an HDMI port that supports 4K (30Hz) resolution. You won’t have to carry along different adapters with you.
If you don’t want to use a dock or can’t find one with the connectors you require, Apple or another firm will almost certainly have an adapter for you. We’ve put together this guide to assist you figure out what you’ll need, and we’ve included links to the necessary adapter in the Apple Store or on Amazon.
Check the return policies; third-party adapters can sometimes fail to operate. When possible, examine user reviews and specifications to ensure that the adapter can perform the tasks you require.
What is the best way to connect USB-C devices?
The Thunderbolt ports on the current 24-inch iMac, MacBook Pro, and MacBook Air operate with USB-C devices that have the same connection shape as Thunderbolt devices. You may just insert a USB-C device into one of the Thunderbolt ports to use it. There’s no need for an adaptor. Whew.
What is the best way to connect USB-A devices?
The USB-A connector is the one you’re probably most familiar with. It’s the same USB port that was used on earlier MacBooks. (Terms like USB 4, USB 3, and USB 2 refer to the data transmission speed through the port.)
Get a USB-C to USB-A hub if you need to connect numerous USB-A devices. A USB-C to 4-Port USB 3.0 Hub from Anker ($26 on Amazon) delivers four USB-A ports.
What is the best way to link micro B SuperSpeed devices?
External storage devices frequently use this connection. You’ll need a new cable, such as the StarTech USB C to Micro USB Cable, which costs $15.
The cable’s name is misleading because it could be mistaken for a micro USB cable. However, if you go to StarTech’s product page, you can see a clear photo of the cable’s micro B SuperSpeed connector, which is not the same as micro USB.
How to link an iPhone or iPad to a computer
You can acquire the USB-C to USB Adapter stated above in the USB-A section for the iPhone and iPad if you’re still using the USB-A to Lightning (or 30-pin if you’re using an older device) cable that came with your device.
You don’t want to use an adapter? A $19 Lightning to USB-C cable is available (1m). A 2-meter version is also available for $29.
More latest iPhones and iPads contain a USB-C to Lightning connection, and the iPad Pro has a USB-C charging cable, therefore the converter isn’t required for those devices.
Connecting the Lightning EarPods
Thanks to Anker, there’s a USB-C to Lightning adaptor. Amazon has it for $25. This adapter features a female Lightning connection on one end, allowing you to connect your Lightning earbuds. The other end of the cable is a conventional USB-C connector that you may put into your MacBook or 24-inch iMac.
How to Use a 3.5mm Headphone Plug to Connect Headphones
You’re in for a treat. The 3.5mm headphone jack is found in the MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, and 24-inch iMac. Simply plug it in and you’re ready to go. That was simple.
Assume you require a second headphone jack. A splitter, such as the Belkin Speaker and Headphone 3.5 mm AUX Audio Cable Splitter ($5 on Amazon), can be used. The Boompods Multi Headphone Audio Splitter, which costs $10, fits into the headphone connector and adds four jacks.
What is the difference between Thunderbolt 1 and Thunderbolt 2 devices?
Older Thunderbolt connectors differ from the Thunderbolt connector on the current MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, and 24-inch iMac. Apple’s $49 Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C) to Thunderbolt 2 Adapter is everything you need.
How to Install an External Display
Because there are so many various types of display connections, this one may take up a significant portion of your cash. Be prepared to purchase a number of adapters.
DisplayPort and mini DisplayPort
A USB-C to DisplayPort cable or adapter is required to connect to a DisplayPort monitor. The Cable Matters USB-C to DisplayPort Adapter cable costs $18 on Amazon and supports 4K TV at 60Hz.
An converter, such as the Answin USB C to Mini DisplayPort adapter ($18 on Amazon), is required to connect a monitor through mini DisplayPort.
If you have a 14-inch or 16-inch MacBook Pro, you will have a full-sized HDMI 2.0 connector. You may connect a conventional HDMI cable to the MacBook Pro.
For other Macs, Apple sells the USB-C Digital AV Multiport Adapter for $69, which has a USB-A port and a USB-C port for charging only. Take note: In August 2019, Apple introduced a new version of this adapter (model number A2119) that supports HDMI 2.0. The previous model (A1621) is HDMI 1.4 compatible. When buying, look for the model number (at an Apple store, you likely will get the new model). The differences between the two adapters are detailed in an Apple support document.
If you don’t want to spend that much money, you can acquire a USB-C to HDMI adaptor, like Anker’s USB-C to HDMI Adapter ($17 on Amazon). The Nonda USB-C to HDMI Adapter ($18 on Amazon) is a favorite of ours. Look for at least 1080p capabilities while shopping for such adapters. The Nonda adaptor supports 4K video.
A 6-foot USB-C to DVI Adapter from Cable Matters is available for $20 on Amazon. They also have 3-foot ($19) and 10-foot ($23) variants available.
Apple sells a USB-C VGA Multiport Adapter ($49 on Amazon) for connecting a VGA monitor. Aside from a VGA to USB-C connection, it also has a USB-A connector for attaching a USB device and a USB-C charging port to keep your laptop battery charged.
The Benfei USB-C to VGA Adapter, which costs $13 on Amazon but lacks USB ports, is a more economical option.
How to Connect to an Ethernet Network
You’ll most likely utilize Wi-Fi, but having an ethernet connection offers advantages. To connect to an Ethernet network, you’ll need an adaptor, such as the Belkin USB-C to Gigabit Ethernet Adapter, which costs $35 on Amazon.
How to connect SD cards
If you use a DLSR or another form of standalone camera, it may include a wireless file transmission option. If not, an adaptor, such as the Cable Matters Dual Slot USB C Card Reader ($10 on Amazon), is required to access the SD card.
If you already have a USB-A card reader, you may try Apple’s $19 USB-C to USB Adapter or a USB-C dock.
Connecting FireWire Devices
You may use Apple’s $19 USB-C to USB Adapter if you have a FireWire to USB-A cord. If you have a device with a FireWire 1394 4-pin connector—it looks like this and was often used on video cameras—and you need to connect it, you may use a USB-A to FireWire 1394 4-pin cable ($8 on Amazon) with Apple’s USB-C to USB Adapter.
It becomes difficult to connect FireWire 400 and 800 devices. Apple sells a Thunderbolt to FireWire Adapter for $29, however it features an outdated Thunderbolt connector that won’t work with a new MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, or 24-inch iMac’s Thunderbolt port.
You might try daisy-chaining adapters, but that’s usually hazardous and may not work, let alone be harmful for the adapters. Connect the Thunderbolt to FireWire Adapter to Apple’s $49 Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C) to Thunderbolt 2 Adapter, which is then connected to the Mac.
How to Connect a Printer to a USB-B Port
Many printers now enable wireless connections, eliminating the need for a cord. However, you may have an older printer or find wireless printing problematic. A USB-B port is found on the majority of consumer printers. It has a squarish connection, unlike USB-A or USB-C.
You’ll need a cable with a USB-C to USB-B connection, such as the Cable Matters USB C Printer Cable. A one-meter cable costs $7, and different lengths are available.
If you already have a USB-C to USB Adapter, you may connect in the USB-A to USB-B cable that comes with your printer. The adapter is then plugged into the laptop.
How to Install a Traditional MagSafe Power Connector on a MacBook Air or MacBook Pro
The 13-inch MacBook Pro and MacBook Air power adapters do not include a detachable MagSafe connection. When someone fell over the power wire on their laptop, MagSafe came in handy.
However, a MagSafe connector may still be added, and there are various charging cables available with magnetic connectors that can break apart when the cable is tugged. Many of the adapters available on Amazon appear to be the same product but branded by various merchants. And, with Amazon user review fraud so prevalent, it’s difficult to depend on such reviews for guidance.
Without having tried these cables ourselves, our best suggestion is to seek for cables that enable Apple quick charging, are long enough for you to use (at least 6 feet), and are built of high-quality materials (like a braided cable). Some cables can be used for data transfers as well, therefore verify the data rate. Some have a right-angle connector; ensure that such a connector does not obstruct the port next to it. Also, keep in mind the warranty and return policy.
I’ve used iPhones of various sizes throughout the years. My first smartphone was a 3.5-inch iPhone, and I’ve owned every size screen since—the 4-inch iPhone 5s, the 4.7-inch iPhone 6s, the 5.5-inch iPhone 7 Plus, the 5.8-inch iPhone X, the 6.1-inch iPhone 11, and, most recently, the 5.4-inch iPhone 12 small.
So, when the iPhone 13 was out, I automatically got the one that wasn’t on the list: the 6.7-inch iPhone 13 Pro Max. That’s 1.3 inches larger than the iPhone 12 mini I’d been using for the previous 11 months, so it took some getting used to. But, in addition to the size and weight—both of which are important obstacles to overcome—I’ve discovered some interesting distinctions between Apple’s smallest and largest iPhones.
Phones can truly last all day
This may sound apparent, but prior to the iPhone 13 Pro Max, I had never used an iPhone that lasted all day. With the iPhone 12 mini, I kept a charger accessible at all times to guarantee that I didn’t run out of power. That is not at all a worry with the iPhone 13 Pro Max. The iPhone 13 Pro Max is a battery beast, easily going through a day of really heavy usage without falling into the red thanks to the larger battery, A15 power handling advances, and adaptive refresh display. I could definitely get through a weekend without charging if I used it sparingly. It’s the single most important reason I’d suggest the Max to anyone looking to buy an iPhone.
Stainless steel looks nice in renderings but is unworkable in real life.
Because the iPhone 13 Pro has the same design as the iPhone 13, Apple needed to differentiate it in some manner, so it chose stainless steel over aluminum, which looks wonderful in mockups but isn’t all that great in actuality. It’s hefty, it scratches easily, it gathers smudges, and, to be honest, it doesn’t look much better than the iPhone 13’s brilliantly colored metal. I understand why Apple would utilize a different material for its higher-end phones, but I’m hopeful that the titanium rumors for next year’s Pro models are real.
iOS should support bigger displays
The iPhone 13 Pro Max is obviously larger than the iPhone 12 small, but aside from the physical size of the screen, there isn’t much difference between the two phones. The usual Pro-to-non-Pro distinctions apply—better camera, better display, greater battery—but for everyday chores, the Max doesn’t provide much more than the small. The iPhone Max uses the same interface as the iPhone mini, unlike the Apple Watch Series 7, which includes upgraded UI components to take advantage of the bigger screen.
That means to say you’re getting the same icon grid, widgets, dock, and App Library. The iPhone 13 Pro Max could easily fit an extra row of icons, but Apple instead has a large swatch of blank space at the bottom go the Home Screen. The same goes for the Dock, which could fit a fifth icon if Apple wanted. So the only things you’re giving up with the mini are larger photos and a couple of extra lines of text. Apple should take a page from the Apple Watch Series 7 here and retool iOS to take advantage of the extra space.
Apple Pencil support is required for the Max
You don’t need me to tell you that the iPhone 13 Pro Max is a massive device. Its display is just approximately an inch smaller than the original iPad mini, with a 6.7-inch screen. A large display is terrific for viewing movies, but it’s also a great productivity tool for tasks like drafting long emails and editing images. However, you must continue to utilize your fingers for everything.
The Apple Pencil is a terrific iPad attachment, and it would be just as useful on the iPhone 13 Max. With a 6.7-inch display, it’s roughly the size of a tiny notepad, and a smaller Apple Pencil would be ideal for swiftly jotting down thoughts and marking up papers. Furthermore, it would distinguish the iPhone 13 Max from the rest of the range and position it as a pro productivity gadget, similar to the iPad Pro or Samsung Galaxy Note.
The tiny iPhone is deserving of a spot in Apple’s range.
According to multiple rumors, the iPhone 13 small will be the last of its kind. Due to poor sales, the smallest iPhone appears to be on the chopping block, as iPhone customers gravitate toward devices with bigger screens. While I enjoy the iPhone Max’s 6.7-inch display, I mourn the iPhone 12 mini’s one-handed use.
If the iPhone small is indeed being phased out with the iPhone 14 series, I hope Apple maintains it in the pipeline for a future iPhone SE. After all, Apple now offers the 12 mini for $599, and it is expected to be reduced to $499 next year, similar to the current iPhone 11. While reports claim that the 2022 iPhone SE will have the same vintage appearance, the following generation is virtually guaranteed to feature a Liquid Retina display, in which case the iPhone small chassis would be an ideal match.
It’s no secret that Apple is becoming more interested in the sports market, since the company has been investing in and hiring athletes for its TV business. We’ve found evidence to support these theories, including a new “SportsKit” basis for iOS and tvOS apps.
Since the first developer beta of iOS 15.2 was released in late October, 9to5Mac has identified references to “SportsKit” in the system’s internal files. There isn’t much information available about this framework yet, as it is most likely still under development, however it is integrated with the Apple TV app, Siri, and even home screen widgets.
The “SportsKit” home screen widget may get real-time information on sporting events. Apple is likely to expand this interaction to other elements of iOS and tvOS because Siri can presently provide sports scores.
One thing to keep in mind about this API is that SportsKit is currently being developed as a private framework, which means it won’t be available to every developer – which makes sense given that sports-related content typically necessitates special deals, and Apple may have to work directly with providers.
Prepare for Sports on Apple TV+
Apple is rumored to be working on its own sports platform as part of its Apple TV+ streaming service. According to a 2019 rumor, Apple was in talks with the PAC-12 about bringing live sports to Apple TV+ subscribers. In 2020, the former president of Amazon Prime Video’s sports area will join the Apple TV team.
Other rumors earlier this year indicated that Apple was in discussions with the NFL to buy the rights to Sunday Ticket, which would be a fantastic addition to Apple TV+. A former ESPN executive was recently appointed to manage the creation of documentary films and unscripted programming for Apple’s streaming service.
The discovery of the first signs of a new sports-related architecture in iOS suggests that Apple will finally have something new to talk about in the coming months.
Apple has published the second developer beta of iOS 14 today, including some minor improvements to the system. And now, we’ve discovered a secret function in the Wallet app that allows users to utilize Apple Pay to make purchases with QR Codes.
Apple is working on a new technique for allowing customers to make Apple Pay purchases by scanning a QR Code or standard barcode with the iPhone camera, according to references found in the iOS 14 code.
We were able to gain access to this feature concealed in iOS 14 beta 2, and while it currently does not operate, we can plainly see a picture demonstrating how it will work. Users will aim the iPhone camera at a QR Code or standard barcode to pay bills and other items using an Apple Pay-enabled card.
The inverse would also work, with users bringing the iPhone up to a scanner and scanning a QR Code created by the Wallet app. Because this code was discovered in a public system API, we can also assume that there will be some interaction with third-party programs.
Apple did not address this feature at WWDC 2020, and it is not yet complete, so we do not know when it will be accessible to customers. It’s worth noting that feature was not there in the first iOS 14 developer beta, which was published last month, indicating that Apple is still working on it.
iOS 14 is set to be launched later this year, with a public beta version available this month.
Many people purchased Apple devices during the Black Friday weekend because they look nice on the outside, but most of them probably didn't pay much regard to the design below the attractive casings. An Apple collector, on the other hand, has given us a cause to...
NewsBuying GuidesHow To'sReviewsThe iPhone is one of the world's most popular gaming gadgets, but if you want to take it to the next level, you'll need a controller. Amazon has the Backbone One Mobile Gaming Controller for $70 with a free month of Xbox Game Pass...
NewsBuying GuidesHow To'sReviews Apple's catalog of already accessible material on Apple TV+ is expanding, but there's an even bigger list of projects in the pipeline. Apple is working on a variety of projects, including films, limited series, specials, and...
Many people purchased Apple devices during the Black Friday weekend because they look nice on the outside, but most of them probably didn’t pay much regard to the design below the attractive casings. An Apple collector, on the other hand, has given us a cause to admire what’s inside our beloved products.
Giulio Zompetti, a collector, has uploaded photos of a pair of Apple gadgets on Twitter that he believes are transparent prototypes of AirPods. It’s unknown why these prototypes were created, although they were most likely never intended for sale and were instead utilized to aid in engineering. Nonetheless, it’s a look that many Apple aficionados would gladly pay for.
Zompetti also tweeted a photo of a transparent 29W power converter, which may be even more stunning than the AirPods. It’s less practical, of course, because it’d be plugged into a wall the majority of the time, but that doesn’t make us want it any less.
Apple had a brief love affair with transparent devices, including the iMac, CRT Studio Display, Pro speakers, and eMate 300, in the late 1990s and early 2000s. Those clear plastic days are certainly over, but it’s difficult not to fall in love with the concept of a range of translucent replicas of Apple’s current goods after seeing these prototypes.
Apple has prioritized interior design since its inception, with the Apple 1 coming without a casing. X-ray images are popular iPhone backgrounds, while translucent side doors were popular Power Mac G5 after-market upgrades. Apple hasn’t introduced anything transparent in a long time, but these goods demonstrate that Apple’s interior design is still a thing of beauty.
The iPhone is one of the world’s most popular gaming gadgets, but if you want to take it to the next level, you’ll need a controller. Amazon has the Backbone One Mobile Gaming Controller for $70 with a free month of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate included, a $30 discount off the MSRP.
You may play any controller-supported game when you insert your iPhone into the Backbone One Controller (iPhone 6s or later). It has a dedicated button for launching the Xbox Cloud Gaming online app, but you’ll need to remove your iPhone from its cover to put it correctly in the controller.
According to Backbone, you’ll need to request an adaptor for “a better experience” on iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max models, but it should function fine on all other versions. The controller includes a 3.5mm headphone jack as well as a Lightning connection for charging while playing. We haven’t tested the Backbone One controller, but it has 4.5 stars and over 3,000 ratings on Amazon.