Stories by Dan Frakes

  • Which iPhone accessories will work with the 5s and 5c?

    Each time Apple introduces a new iPhone model, we get many questions about compatiblity: Will the accessories you already own--cases, speakers, chargers, and the like--work with the new model? In some years, such as when Apple replaced the iPhone 4 with the iPhone 4S, there are few physical and electrical differences, so almost everything works. Other times, Apple changes both the size and the electronics of the phone: The iPhone 5, for example, had both a different shape and a completely different charge/sync connector.

  • Get your Mac ready for Mountain Lion

    Editor's note: This article is the first in a series of upcoming articles on installing Mountain Lion. We'll publish a complete guide to the new version of OS X once the update becomes available.

  • Mid-2012 MacBook Airs offer improved performance and connectivity

    Believe it or not, it's been nearly four and a half years since Apple released the original --MacBook Air. At the time, it was revolutionary in terms of its size and weight, but it also was slow, had little storage, had only a single USB port for expansion, and was very expensive--it started at $1799, and if you wanted solid-state storage, the price increased dramatically (by $999!). As Jason Snell wrote at the time, "laptop design has always been about compromise," and the original Air required some painful compromises.

  • Smarts 1.0 for iTunes

    I'm a heavy user of iTunes's smart playlists, which are dynamic listings of tracks based on criteria you define; as your iTunes library changes, <a href="">smart playlists</a> automatically update their contents to reflect those changes. For example, instead of creating a standard playlist called Recent Jazz, and then manually adding new jazz tracks to it and removing older tracks from it, you can create a smart playlist with the criteria Genre Is Jazz and Date Added in the last 3 months. Whenever you add new jazz tracks to iTunes, that playlist is automatically updated to include them; tracks you added prior to three months ago are pruned automatically.

  • Hitachi announces G-Connect storage, wireless-access device

    Wish your iPad or iPod could hold more media? That your hotel room's Internet connection was wireless? That you had a portable Time Machine drive when traveling? Hitachi's upcoming <a href="">G-Connect Wireless Storage with Internet Access for iPad</a>, announced Wednesday, offers a solution to all these challenges and more in one compact package.