Fiat Chrysler to offer CarPlay in select Chrysler, Dodge and Jeep vehicles this year

By Cody Lee on Jan 4, 2016

Fiat Chrysler on Monday announced its fourth-generation Uconnect system, which will bring Apple CarPlay and Android Auto to select vehicle models later this year. In a press release, the automaker says that the addition of CarPlay will give drivers a smarter, safer way to use their iPhones while in their cars.

“With fourth-gen,” said Joni Christensen, Head of Uconnect Marketing, “we are continuing to minimize the everyday stresses of busy lifestyles by providing drivers with a variety of ways to stay conveniently connected to their vehicles, while making every drive exceptionally informative, entertaining and unique.” Read More

 

This new portable charger wants you to believe it was designed by Apple

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 4, 2016

Picking a portable battery pack for your iPhone or other smartphone brand can be a daunting task. There are literally hundreds of such accessories in the marketplace that are vying for your attention, available in many shapes, sizes and price points.

The latest entrant to the mobile charging game is a Silicon Valley startup called 4Second Life, which at CES 2016 in Las Vegas showed off its portable charger, the Aluminum VI, which looks (or wants to look) like it was designed by Apple itself. Read More

 

Brydge launches backlit keyboard cases for iPad Pro and iPad mini 4

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 4, 2016

Accessory vendor Brydge launched at CES 2016 in Las Vegas a pair of brand new clamshell backlit keyboard cases for Apple’s super-sized iPad Pro and the fourth-generation iPad mini.

Both the aluminum-clad $189 BrydgePro for iPad Pro and the $99 BrydgeMini for iPad mini 4 have rechargeable three-month batteries, sport backlit keys akin to those on MacBooks, offer Bluetooth connectivity and have a multi-angle hinge mechanism for folding them into a clamshell-like appearance. Read More

 

Griffin’s new USB-C power cable brings MagSafe charging to 12-inch MacBook

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 4, 2016

Apple’s twelve-inch MacBook is one hell of a laptop in terms of portability, build quality and features, but some people are fretting over its limited expandability. With just one USB-C port, folks who wish to connect more than one accessory to the notebook must buy pricey USB-C adapters.

Sadly, the adoption of USB-C on the one-port MacBook has also meant nixing Apple’s tremendously popular MagSafe adapter.

If you’re concerned about sending your notebook flying by accidentally tripping over its USB-C charging cable, Griffin has a solution for you in the form of a newly announced charging cable that brings MagSafe-like technology to the new MacBook. Read More

 

These tiny wireless earbuds pack an MP3 player, a versatile fitness tracker and much more

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 12, 2015

Ever since the iPod’s heyday a decade ago, I was been wondering whether Apple in its pursue of miniaturization might eventually come around engineering an iPod shuffle of sorts that would be entirely embedded inside the firm’s In-Ear Headphones.

But as Apple hit the brake on iPod innovation amid rise of the iPhone, my dreams have remained mere wishful thinking — up until now. A German company called Bragi has created a tiny earbuds that contain an embedded MP3 player, a comprehensive fitness tracker and a host of other features. Read More

 

CES 2015: Harman builds CarPlay solution based on steering wheel-mounted touchpad

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 8, 2015

Jeremy Horwitz of 9to5Mac had a chance to play with Harman’s novel CarPlay solution at CES 2015 which ditches touchscreen-based interactions in favor of a steering wheel-mounted touchpad.

Harman, which designs and sells audio and infotainment equipment, says its Integrated Essentials Cockpit is noteworthy as it doesn’t render UI on an in-car display like other CarPlay systems, but rather puts it in the dashboard directly behind the steering wheel.

Such an approach could be viewed as better compared to touchscreen-based CarPlay systems for a number of reasons, yet isn’t without its pitfalls. Read More

 

New noise-cancelling headphones from Philips draw power from Lightning port

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 8, 2015

As The Verge reported Thursday, Consumer electronics maker Philips took the wraps off its new on-ear headphones that don’t have a built-in battery, instead drawing power from the Lightning port of an iOS device.

The Fidelio NC1L features noise-cancelling technology which uses four different microphones to suppress background noise. Audio quality is improved further thanks to the use of Philips’s own integrated 24-bit digital-to-analog converter instead of the one built into iOS devices. Read More

 

CES 2015: OWC puts desktop-class SSD into USB 3.0 thumb drive, previews FusionDrive-like app

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 7, 2015

At CES, Other World Computing launched several new products aimed at Apple users, including a new desktop-class solid state drive (SSD) packaged inside a tiny USB 3.0 thumb drive form factor and a work-in-progress version of the forthcoming Transwarp software which marries traditional hard drive to SSD cache akin to Apple’s own FusionDrive solution. Read More

 

CES 2015: upgraded Flir One thermal imager has 4x resolution, works with any Lightning iOS device

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 7, 2015

This time last year at at CES in Las Vegas, the world’s first private thermal imager, the Flir One, was announced and released six months later in the form of a case that slides onto an iPhone 5/5s. And now at CES 2015, a much improved version got unveiled which works with any Lightning-enabled iOS device and Android smartphones via USB.

Additionally, a Flir One software developer kit (SDK) was released in December for the iOS platform.

Android developers will gain access to the SDK in the Spring. Both iOS and Android editions of the Flir One SDK will let programmers write apps which access absolute temperature data for all pixels and control the camera’s shutter mode, in both manual and automatic settings. Read More

 

After T-Mobile, AT&T to roll over your unused data to the next month, but with a twist

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 7, 2015

Wednesday, AT&T promised to give folks on its shared plans rollover data. Beginning January 25, the more than 50 million of its Mobile Share Value customers will be able to carry over any unused cellular data allotment to the next month.

Any unused, shareable plan data in a given month gets rolled over to the next, as long as family members are on the same Mobile Share Value plan.

T-Mobile back in December launched a similar data rollover feature called Data Stash. Read More