About the Author

Jeff Benjamin

@JeffBenjam

Jeff produces videos, walkthroughs, how-tos, written tutorials and reviews. He takes pride in being able to explain things in a simple, clear and concise manner.

Jeff Benjamin's Favorite Gear

July 17

Yesterday I received a special package in the mail from China. The package contained three new iPhone 11 dummy models representing Apple’s upcoming iPhone lineup.

Included inside the package were dummy models of the upcoming iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Max, and iPhone 11R. Watch our hands-on video walkthrough as we explore these well-made mockups. expand full story

July 16

Last week Apple pushed out a couple of updates to the entry-level MacBook Pro and the MacBook Air. The MacBook Air update included a new lower $1099 starting price along with True Tone Display support.

The MacBook Air update was nice, but the refresh to the entry-level MacBook Pro, which hasn’t received an update since 2017, was far more compelling. The new entry-level MacBook model comes with refreshed internals, Touch Bar and Touch ID support, and features the same $1299 base price.

Touch Bar support is nice, but the most impressive thing about this refresh is its speed, thanks large in part to the 8th-generation quad-core CPU that replaces the dual-core CPU on the previous iteration. The update makes the entry-level MacBook Pro well worth considering, even for those who felt the previous model was too underpowered for their needs.

Watch our hands-on video walkthrough inside for the details.

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July 12

HyperCube is a brand new product from Sanho’s Hyper brand that automatically backs up your iPhone to microSD or USB storage while you charge. The product is available now for a 40% off special preorder price for a limited time ahead of a launch scheduled for next month. expand full story

July 11

Features like Dark Mode, and improved multitasking made headlines when iOS 13 and iPadOS 13 were revealed back in June, and rightfully so. That said, I find that many of the smaller, under-the-radar features lend a measurable improvement to the user experience as well. Watch as I discuss my five favorite sleeper features in iOS 13 in this latest hands-on video walkthrough. expand full story

July 9

The Apple Watch receives a huge update with watchOS 6, bringing more independence to Apple’s wearable device than ever before. Among the watchOS 6 changes is a brand new App Store app that allows you to manage and download apps directly to the Apple Watch, a new Software Update provision that lets you perform updates, and a new Enhanced Siri voice assistant that’s much more capable than before.

Of course, there’s also many new watch faces, complications, and additional changes and features to enjoy in watchOS 6. Watch our hands-on video walkthrough as we step through dozens of new watchOS 6 changes and features. expand full story

July 3

Yesterday Apple released its latest developer beta updates for iOS 13 and iPadOS 13. As expected, developer beta 3 brings about a substantial amount of new changes and features. Watch our hands-on video walkthrough as we step through what’s new in iOS 13 and iPadOS 13 beta 3. expand full story

June 27

Creating a bootable macOS Catalina USB install drive is an effective way to generate a clean installation of macOS on your Mac. This hands-on tutorial will work with both the macOS Catalina developer beta, the macOS Catalina public beta, and the final version of macOS Catalina scheduled to launch later this fall. Follow our easy-to-use step-by-step video tutorial for the details. expand full story

June 25

After going hands-on with iOS 13 and iPadOS 13, it’s now time to lend attention to macOS Catalina top features. This latest Mac software update is headlined by the dissolution of iTunes in favor of three new standalone apps for Music, Podcasts, and TV.

macOS Catalina, which checks in at version 10.15, also adds the ability to authenticate passwords with an Apple Watch and use an iPad as an external display. Watch our hands-on video walkthrough for a look at the top macOS Catalina features, and be sure to subscribe to 9to5Mac on YouTube for more hands-on videos. expand full story

June 19

On Monday iOS 13 beta 2 was released to developers and, as expected, it comes with a whole host of new changes and features. The update is headlined by the SMB server functionality in the Files app, which was not working in the previous beta. Beta 2 also includes several new Memoji stickers and new Portrait mode functionality in the Camera app. Watch our hands-on video walkthrough for a look at what’s new in iOS 13 beta 2. expand full story

June 18

After going hands-on with over 250 new changes and features across both iOS 13 and iPadOS 13, I set out to distill the list down to 13 of my favorite new features. What stands out the most amongst so many changes? Watch our hands-on video walkthrough for the details and be sure to subscribe to 9to5Mac on YouTube for more iOS 13 coverage. expand full story

June 17

iOS 13 beta 2 adds new Portrait Lighting Control and High-Key Mono effect to the Camera app

Two of the headlining changes involving Photos in iOS 13 were missing in action in the initial beta, but today’s second beta release makes the new features available to beta testers. A new High-Key Mono effect in the Camera app’s Portrait Mode panel is now available, along with the ability to edit and control Portrait Lightning via a new Portrait Lighting Control section in the Photos app editing interface.

iOS 13 beta 2 enables SMB Server connectivity in the Files app

One of the big new additions to the Files app in iOS 13 is the ability to connect to a server via SMB. In the initial iOS 13 beta, attempting such a connection resulted in an error, but in iOS 13 beta 2, you can now successfully connect to a server wirelessly.

June 13

In this iPadOS 13 video walkthrough, we go hands-on with lots of new iPad features. Items covered include new Home screen enhancements, huge multitasking updates, Apple Pencil improvements, and much more. Watch our full video inside for the details, and don’t forget to subscribe to 9to5Mac on YouTube for more video walkthroughs like this. expand full story

June 7

In this video walkthrough, we go hands-on with tons of new iOS 13 beta 1 changes and features. Items covered include Dark Mode, amazing new iOS photo and video editing features, a hugely-improved Files app, and much, much more. Watch our full video inside for the details, and don’t forget to subscribe to 9to5Mac on YouTube to get future videos. expand full story

June 5

Today Serif, creator of Affinity Designer and Affinity Photo, has released version 1.7 of its popular illustration and photo editing apps on Mac. The updates are headlined by enhanced GPU compute acceleration, HDR monitor support, and a new memory management system. Both Affinity Photo and Affinity Designer 1.7 are available for download on the Mac App Store today. expand full story

June 3

Today Apple launched a brand new high-end reference-grade LCD HDR display alongside the newly redesigned Mac Pro. The new monitor, which Apple is calling the Pro Display XDR is a 32-inch LCD display with a 6016 x 3384 6K native resolution and over 20 million pixels. expand full story

June 1

Yesterday I received a special package in the mail all the way from Shenzhen, China. Inside were three prototype cases for Apple’s upcoming 2019 iPhone lineup.

These new iPhones, possibly to be called the iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Max, and iPhone 11R, will feature a new camera array on the rear according to reports from multiple sources.

How do the new iPhone 11 cases compare to current-generation iPhone models like the iPhone XS Max and iPhone XR? Watch our brief hands-on video walkthrough for the details. expand full story

May 31

Earlier this week the iPod touch received a modest upgrade, arriving with little fanfare via an Apple press release. The new 7th-generation iPod touch has little in the way of new features, but it does receive a CPU spec-bump that takes it from an iPhone 6-era Apple A8 to an iPhone 7-era A10 Fusion chip, not to mention double the RAM of the previous generation.

The new hardware upgrades make it so that iPod touch users can enjoy Augmented Reality (AR) apps along with Group FaceTime capability for the first time. There’s also a new 256 GB flash storage tier, another first for the iPod lineup. It means that in 2019, there’s finally an iPod that bests the 160GB iPod Classic in terms of storage space.

While the iPod touch isn’t the mass market item that earlier members of the product line once were, Apple believes that there continues to be a viable audience for such a device. Not only is it ideal for storing large music libraries locally, but with the upcoming launch of the new Apple Arcade subscription gaming service, Apple continues to position the iPod touch as a handheld gaming option.

All of that said, should you consider buying this new iPod touch? Watch our hands-on video review for the details. expand full story

May 29

As we await Apple’s full-on redesign of the MacBook Pro, hopefully with a rethought keyboard in tow, Apple surprised us with another spec-bumped MacBook Pro release alongside the launch of the new 23.7-inch LG UltraFine Display.

In light of the ongoing keyboard issues, it would be all too easy to criticize Apple for releasing yet another MacBook with a slightly-modified butterfly key switch design. The criticism is well-deserved given the history of the keyboard issues, but I also think it’s worth looking at the positive aspects of this release.

Just because its brand new fully-redesigned MacBook Pro hardware with a rethought keyboard isn’t ready, doesn’t mean that Apple has left the existing MacBook Pro lineup to stagnate — something it would have had no problem allowing to happen in the past. Instead, Apple continues to issue updates as they become available from key partners.

For example, Intel’s new 9th-generation i9-9980H and i9-9980HK CPUs just launched this quarter, and Apple wasted no time updating its MacBook Pro with the new 8-core chips. This release, along with last November’s Radeon Pro Vega spec-bump update, shows that Apple is taking the idea of catering to professional Mac users seriously.

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May 24

After discontinuing the smaller 21.5-inch UltraFine Display, LG has released a new larger 24-inch UltraFine-labeled monitor in its place at the same $699 price point. If the launch of the new display flew under your radar, that’s probably because much of the spotlight was centered on Apple’s new 2019 MacBook Pro models, which launched alongside LG’s new display.

This new UltraFine Display is like a combination of the UltraFine 5K and the older UltraFine 4K Display, and for the most part that’s an okay thing. The biggest feature is the inclusion of not just one, but two Thunderbolt 3 ports. That’s an improvement over LG’s previous Apple-centric displays, as you’ll see in our hands-on video review. expand full story

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