The iBus claims to be able to help you restore your Apple Watch's software

Apple Watch Series 2
Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends
Apple devices are known for being consumer friendly but when they break down, that isn’t necessarily true. Case in point: When the Apple Watch has software issues that aren’t fixed with an over-the-air update, you are forced to bring your device to an Apple Store to have the issue resolved. Not anymore! Well, maybe.

A company called MFC claims to have built a solution to the issue. The device is called the iBus Data Cable and it’s basically a small dongle that plugs into the Apple Watch’s maintenance port that sites behind the watch strap. Most Apple Watch owners don’t even know that the port exists and speculation suggests that it is mostly built for Apple use — but MFC says that through the port, the dongle can completely restore the Apple Watch’s software.

The iBus Data Cable comes in two separate parts — the dongle itself, and a two-in-one adapter pilot pin. That adapter pilot pin connects to the iBus data cable on one end and your Mac on the other end.

It’s important to note that there are a few caveats here. For example, the device only works with the Apple Watch Series 1 and the company may not provide the actual software files you’ll need for the device, but you can find a few links to use in the comments section on the MFC website. There is another issue here, though. Apple only makes the software files available for an over-the-air update and you will need a file that is currently approved by Apple.

In other words, most people will still want to take their device to the Apple Store but the more tech-advanced among us may have a simpler way of doing things. Assuming they have an Apple-signed copy of the Apple Watch software, that is.

The iBus itself comes at $90 but keep in mind that we have not verified how well it works or if it works at all. If you really still want one, you can get one from the MFC website.

Deals

It’s no Apple Watch, but the Vtech Kidizoom is a cheap smartwatch for kids

Looking for a cheap, no-nonsense smartwatch for kids? The Vtech Kidizoom DX2 smartwatch lets your child take photos, videos, play games, and track steps. With a $15 discount, it's very affordable.
Mobile

iPad Air vs. iPad Mini: Which new tablet from Apple is best for you?

Apple has unveiled two new iPad models, including a new iPad Air and a new iPad Mini. Both devices have a lot to offer. But which iPad is right for your needs? We put the iPad Air and iPad Mini to the test to find out.
Mobile

How to choose an iPad in 2019: A practical guide to Apple’s tablets

Selecting an iPad from Apple's lineup can be intimidating, but it doesn't have to be. Our comprehensive guide should put the numbers and specs in practical, easy-to-understand terms. Find your ideal iPad with the help of our guide.
Mobile

The Apple iPad Air is the power-packed tablet for everyone

The iPad Air is the less serious cousin to Apple's iPad Pro range, and it's the perfect addition to your coffee table. But it's no less powerful. Here's everything you need to know about the iPad Air.
Computing

These are the 6 best -- and free -- antivirus apps to help protect your MacBook

Malware protection is more important than ever, even if you eschew Windows in favor of Apple's desktop platform. Thankfully, protecting your machine is as easy as choosing from the best free antivirus apps for Mac suites.
Android

Mobile World Congress 2019

There's no bigger show for mobile tech geeks than Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain: where flagship phones are born and intriguing new wearables shine. And this year, where foldable phones and 5G are dominating the news. For 2019…
Product Review

Casio’s Pro Trek WSD-F30 outdoors smartwatch fits city lifestyles, too

It’s equipped with all the outdoor tools and sensors you want, but the Casio Pro Trek WSD-F30 is as much a lifestyle smartwatch as it is trekking companion.
Wearables

Microsoft Band: Users of the defunct fitness tracker offered a refund

Three years after it stopped making the device, Microsoft has announced it is finally ending support for its Band fitness tracker. The good news is that current users, if there are any still out there, can obtain a partial refund.
Wearables

Fitbit drops the price, splashes on the color for spring 2019 lineup

Fitbit's spring 2019 lineup includes a new Versa Lite Edition, an affordable everyday smartwatch, as well as the stylish and sleek Inspire and Inspire HR fitness trackers. There's also the Ace 2, a swimproof tracker for kids ages 6 and up.
Wearables

Time to get to the gym: The fitness-loving Galaxy Watch Active is now available

Looking for a new fitness buddy? Samsung just launched the Galaxy Watch Active and the Galaxy Fit, two new wearables with a raft of fitness-focused features that'll keep you moving and get you down to the gym.
Home Theater

IPX what? The electronics water- and dust-resistance rating explained

Increasingly, consumer electronics companies are using an IPX code to demonstrate that their products are water and dust resistant. But what does this IPX code mean? We break it all down and walk you through it.
Wearables

Fitbit Versa Lite versus Fitbit Versa: How are they different?

Fitbit took the best of its popular Versa smartwatch and removed some elements to create the new Versa Lite, an even more affordable entry-level smartwatch. How does the Versa Lite differ from the original Versa? Read on to find out.
Wearables

You will never need to charge a smartwatch again, if new EU project succeeds

A new EU research project has launched into finding a new way of powering wearable devices, with the intention of using an energy harvesting system to ensure we never have to charge one up ever again.
Wearables

Garmin Marq series offers stylish performance for those willing to pay for it

Garmin had been around for 30-years and is celebrating its anniversary with a big announcement: The Marq, a new series of premium adventure smartwatches designed for consumers who want stylish performance and are willing to pay for it.