The Morning After: Apple unveiled its $549 AirPods Max headphones

Despite it being December, Apple just won’t stop launching new devices and services. It blindsided most of us yesterday when it revealed its long-rumored AirPods Max — the company’s first over-ear headphones — along with a concrete launch date for Fitness+. The company’s exercise subscription service will land December 14th, while the AirPods Max (available for pre-order today) will ship on December 15th — as long as you’re willing to stump up $549.

AirPods Max

It’s a lot of money for the over-ear headphones, which feature active noise cancellation (ANC), hands-free access to Siri, adaptive EQ and spatial audio in addition to what Apple calls “incredible high-fidelity audio.” The AirPods Pro (which are smaller buds, admittedly) retail for less than half ($249) in Apple’s own stores and sneak under the $200-mark elsewhere.

And if you want to use the AirPods Max as wired headphones, be prepared to pony up $35 for an adapter, which stings our wallets a little more — a lot of wireless headphones at the $500 region include such things as a courtesy.

We’ll withhold further judgment until an Engadget editor has had the chance to test these headphones out. Apple might have the effortless interface and connectivity down, but when it comes to headphones at this price, can the audio quality on the AirPods Max best Sony and Bose’s efforts?

— Mat Smith

CD Projekt Red plans to address Cyberpunk 2077’s epilepsy triggersThe team will implement a ‘permanent solution’ as soon as possible.

Cyberpunk 2077

Following published reviews on Monday, reports emerged that the game’s strobing effects and rapid blinking lights could trigger epileptic episodes. Developer CD Projekt Red has since responded on Twitter, saying it plans to add a separate warning, alongside the EULA that most games show on-screen when a game is booted up. It added that the devs are looking into implementing “a more permanent solution” as soon as possible.Continue reading.

ThinkPad X1 Fold review: Lenovo’s foldable PC is nowhere near readyNearly $3,000 is just too much for a Windows tablet.

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Fold

Lenovo’s latest ThinkPad is different from the rest as it’s built around a bendable 13.3-inch OLED display. The good news is that the $230 companion keyboard, which lets you use it as a laptop, is surprisingly comfortable, and the X1 Fold ran for over 13 hours in our battery run down test. The bad news is nearly everything else — this first-gen product is an “expensive experiment” with many alternatives that are more reasonably priced.Continue reading.

Pornhub ends unverified uploads and bans downloadsIts days as a ‘tube site’ are over.

After a New York Times article dug into PornHub’s lackluster efforts to keep videos of children or assaults off of its platform, Visa and Mastercard began to investigate their relationship with its corporate parent. That apparently was enough to spur meaningful changes, as the company announced it will end uploads from unverified users and block downloads of content immediately.

Though the company will still allow users to upload their own videos, beginning next year it will first require people to complete an “identification protocol” to verify their identity.Continue reading.