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This app lets you do custom iOS icons without the Shortcuts app

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iPhone icon customization is booming, thanks to new features in iOS 14, but there’s still some big catches. The workaround for a bespoke iPhone homescreen requires routing through Apple’s Shortcuts app every time you want to open an app, and the process of customizing all your apps one-by-one is a time-consuming and frustrating task.

But Launch Center Pro — a popular tool for customizing and creating quick shortcuts on iOS — has solved both of those issues with its latest update. With a clever workaround that uses Apple’s own Profiles system to install custom “web clip” profiles that directly link out to your selected apps, users can finally make custom icons that work just like regular apps. Plus, they can be installed in a batch, allowing users to easily add custom icons for almost all their favorite apps in one fell swoop.

It’s not a perfect system: users will still have to set up each app, one by one (although Launch Center Pro does make getting that set up a little easier), and you’ll still have to hide your “real” apps to iOS 14’s App Library, given that Launch Center Pro’s direct links are still, well, links. Still, it’s a far better solution than using Shortcuts, one that makes installing and using custom icons a viable option for day-to-day life. And due to limitations from Apple, the direct linking only works for third-party apps from the App Store — Apple’s own apps still have to bounce through either Shortcuts or Launch Center Pro.

The actual process of getting all your apps installed is a little complicated, but Launch Center Pro has helpfully put together a handy video guide that should help you through it. (There’s also a TikTok version, which makes sense given that the popularity of custom icon layouts has surged in large part due to videos there.)

Launch Center Pro offers several options for its custom icons. Users can directly import existing photos or images from their phone, in the event that you’ve already created your own bespoke icons (or bought a pack from an enterprising seller on Etsy.) There’s also an icon composer, which lets users easily create their own custom icons out of preset backgrounds and tons of preset glyphs. The company has already hired a new designer to continue to create more icon backgrounds, custom icon packs, and styles for the icon composer, too.

And according to developer David Barnard, the company is already working to add more functionality to make Launch Center Pro’s icon system work even better in the future, including the option to save multiple icon sets (so that users can easily swap between setups), the ability to share icon sets to other users, and faster import options to allow pre-made icon sets to be added to Launch Center all at once.

Some of the features here are based on existing options that Launch Center Pro has already offered. But those icons still had to route through Shortcuts — with the new update, they’re able to directly link to any app on the iOS App Store. And of course, all of these complex workarounds are needed because Apple refuses to offer any real customization options in the first place, an issue that the company seems unlikely to relent on anytime soon.

Launch Center Pro is a free download, but many of its features — including the option to add custom app icons to the home screen — require either a monthly subscription (for $14.99 per year) or a one-time purchase for lifetime access ($4.99 for home screen app icons, and $24.99 for the icon composer tool.) The company also offers a $74.99 lifetime bundle that permanently unlocks all current and future features.

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Conquer Your Pup’s Dander and Fur With $700 Off a Cobalt or Charcoal Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum

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Best Home DealsBest Home DealsThe best home, kitchen, smart home, and automotive deals from around the web, updated daily.

Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum & Mop (Cobalt) | $200 | Best Buy

Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum & Mop (Charcoal) | $200 | Best Buy

Allergies can be bad enough as the seasons change. Don’t let pet hair and dander add to that by vacuuming it up early and often. That chore is easier said than done— unless you have a robot vacuum to do the work for you. This lovely bright cobalt Bobsweep PetHair Plus robot vacuum and mop, only $200 today at Best Buy seems like an ideal option. That’s a whopping $700 off, by the way.

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You can get the same deal for the charcoal version of the robot vac, too. This model is not only specially made for picking up pet hair, it self docks and charges when it’s finished with the work.

It also comes with a mop attachment, so it can take care of those kitchen floors for you as well. Grab it while it’s still available for this fantastic price!

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Apple will replace AirPods Pro for free with faulty noise cancellation, static or crackling

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Today, exactly one year after Apple first launched the AirPods Pro — and thus the same day the very first AirPods Pro owners will see their one-year warranties expire — Apple has launched a repair program that offers free repairs or replacements for another whole year if your AirPods Pro experience issues with noise cancellation or static.

Specifically, Apple will fix:

Crackling or static sounds that increase in loud environments, with exercise or while talking on the phone

Active Noise Cancellation not working as expected, such as a loss of bass sound, or an increase in background sounds, such as street or airplane noise

Apple says only a “small percentage of AirPods Pro” are affected by the issues, but it apparently wasn’t just an early batch — Apple says affected units were manufactured “before October 2020,” meaning every AirPods Pro ever made might be eligible. That’s quite a recall if so. Apple says it will repair faulty AirPods Pro for two years after you first buy them.

We’ve heard complaints about degraded noise cancellation before, and at least one Verge editor has replaced their AirPods Pro under warranty. It’s nice to hear that Apple isn’t just cutting buyers off as soon as that warranty expires.

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This 55″ 4K TCL Smart TV Hangs on Your Wall for $200

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Best Tech DealsBest Tech DealsThe best tech deals from around the web, updated daily.

TCL 55″ S434 4K Smart TV | $200 | Best Buy

Best Buy has an insane deal going for a brand new 55″ 4K TCL smart TV. It’s the S434, which is pretty baseline for TCL’s lineup, but at just $200, there’s little to complain about. TCL’s panels are plenty sharp and accurate, and with this set, you’ll get HDR10 compliance for enhanced color and brightness in supported games and video content. This model has Android TV onboard for all your app needs, and with an included voice remote, all your favorite content is just a shout away with the help of Google Assistant.

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