Good deal: 47% off this 6-ft MFi convertible charging cable

By Cody Lee on Dec 19, 2014

Would you be interested in a 6-foot MFi-certified Lightning cable for your iPhone or iPad? Or how about a Lightning cable that converts into a Micro-USB cable so it can work with both iOS and Android devices? If you answered yes to either of these questions, I’ve got a great deal to share with you.

For the next few days, StackSocial is offering a significant discount on its 6-foot long USB-to-device cable, which features a USB plug on one end and duel connectors on the other. One is a Micro USB plug, and the other is a Lightning plug, and their quick cap setup makes it easy to switch between them Read More

 

Good deal: 45% off Striiv Fusion smartwatch and fitness tracker

By Cody Lee on Dec 18, 2014

Folks in the market for a fitness tracker, or perhaps a last-minute Christmas gift, may want to check out this new deal from StackSocial. The deal site is offering the Striiv Fusion smartwatch at a significant discount for a limited time.

The Fusion is capable of tracking steps, calories burned, distance traveled and time active, putting it on par with most of the other available fitness trackers. It also offers smartwatch features too, like text, call and email notifications. Read More

 

Divoom Bluetooth speakers offer big sound in a small package

By Jim Gresham on Dec 17, 2014

The market is crowded with Bluetooth speakers. Every time you turn around, there is someone selling another Bluetooth speaker. They are an excellent iOS device accessory and I recommend having at least one. Of course, they run the full range of prices and I have had my hands on cheap and expensive several hundred dollar models.

When choosing a speaker, it is important to decide what is most important to you. Do you need one small enough to throw in your bag or do you prefer a home theater style option that can shake the walls with crisp and booming sound? Divoom is on the lower end of the Bluetooth spectrum. Providing small packaged, portable Bluetooth speakers with a rugged edge is the niche market for the Texas based company, which sent them over for review. Read More

 

The Kodiak Power Bank will keep your iPhone charged in the rain, snow, or sand

By Jim Gresham on Dec 16, 2014

Samsung called us iPhone users wall huggers in their recent commercial attacks. Sure, we charge fairly frequently, but iPhone owners just like using their device more and do it more frequently. Right? Sometimes that leads to a low battery. Even with an iPhone 6 Plus touting about 10 usage hours before depleting, I sometimes find myself in scenarios where additional charge is critical.

There are loads of battery backups on the market. Just walking into a 7-11 convenient store will reveal small stick sized charging devices for a few bucks. But, a backup is one of those you-get-what-you-pay-for experiences. Take a look inside for details on Outdoor Tech’s Kodiak Power Bank. Read More

 

The Stratus XL controller takes iOS gaming to the next level [review + giveaway]

By Jim Gresham on Dec 15, 2014

Since Apple announced MFi controller support for iOS games, fewer options appeared than originally anticipated. The reason for a slow response is a bit surprising. However, my point of view is slightly skewed as an iOS accessory hardware reviewer. Still, I cannot imagine why app developers would not want to build in the support. Even more shocking is the small list of hardware options.

At CES 2014, it seemed like controllers would be the new thing. Unfortunately, several companies I chatted with never released their controller. We have come a long way since January 2014 and a full year plus another six months since the MFi controller support protocol released at WWDC.

SteelSeries was one of the first companies to-market with their SteelSeries Stratus. The Stratus was an extremely small MFi controller, but perfect for on-the-go gamers. Recently, they released the Stratus XL, a full sized battle tested design, similar to a true console handheld. After settling down with the XL, it changed the way I look at iOS as a gaming platform. Read More

 

Twelve South launches premium BookBook leather wallet case for iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 12, 2014

Participating in the multi-billion dollar accessory industry yields substantial financial incentives for vendors that ready their cases by the time the next iPhone hits the market, but Twelve South has never been about the money alone.

That’s especially evident in the case (pun intended) of the latest iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus models. Because the new phones represent a major departure from the established phone design and form factor, Twelve South has decided to take their time to get their premium BookBook case right for the bigger iPhones.

And it’s finally here. Introducing the BookBook for your iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. Read More

 

Good deal: 58% off this 20,000mAh dual USB battery pack

By Cody Lee on Dec 11, 2014

It’s holiday season, and whether you’re looking to get a gift or something for yourself, at a great price, you’re going to want to checkout this deal from StackSocial. For a limited time, the deal site is offering the Limefuel LP200X dual USB battery pack at a 58% discount from its normal price.

The 20,000mAh Lithium-ion battery pack features a compact design with an LCD display, built-in flashlight and two USB ports, so you can charge multiple devices at one time. Limefuel claims that when fully-juiced, the pack is capable of charging your iPad or other tablet between 2-4 times. Read More

 

Never forget to water your plants again with the Parrot Flower Power smart sensor

By Jim Gresham on Dec 11, 2014

No one in my home has a green thumb. Sure, like any normal family we have some decorative blooms around the house, but nothing to get too crazy over. Mostly because we are a family on the go, plants suffer in both the summer and winter, when the weather is most extreme. If plants could talk, right?

Well, Parrot developed a way to get the data you need about plants, simply by walking by. While we may be too busy to notice a plant while rushing past, what if you could receive a shout of desperation. A plant begging you for water through a push notification is hard to ignore. Read More

 

Bose products return to Online Apple Store in time for holiday shopping

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 10, 2014

As hinted earlier this week, Bose products have in fact returned to the Online Apple Store following their removal last month. According to some watchers, the iPhone maker pulled Beats products following an alleged patent infringement on Beats’ part.

Some but not all Bose audio products can now be purchased through Apple’s webstore ahead of the Christmas shopping frenzy, such as the $196 SoundLink Mini Bluetooth Speaker, the $300 SoundLink Bluetooth Speaker III and the $300 QuietComfort 20i Acoustic Noise Cancelling Headphones. Read More

 

This micro USB to Lightning cable adapter can help eliminate cable clutter

By Jim Gresham on Dec 10, 2014

Tired of carrying around multiple cables? Of course you are! Lots of gadgets pile up around iOS devices. There are battery cases, portable Bluetooth speakers, powered headphones, and the like. Unfortunately, none of them use Lightning cables for charging as they instead require a micro USB.

I keep both a Lightning cable and micro USB cable in my daypack at all times. Actually, I keep two Lightning and two micro USB cables in my pack. My forgetfulness only proves the challenge of keeping enough cords around. If only there was a cable to satisfy both standards. Thanks to accessory maker TYLT, the Syncable-Duo is just the solution. Read More

 

eBay revamps iPad app with exclusive deals on Apple accessories

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 9, 2014

The popular e-commerce service eBay on Tuesday launched its updated iPad client with a redesigned interface and exclusive deals on Apple accessories.

The 52.2-megabyte download improves your buying and selling functionality with the native tablet interface featuring bigger product images, better item suggestions, tabbed navigation, swiping, smarter search results, a brand new Today homepage and more.

Designed to put your products at the forefront and create an engaging shopping experience for buyers, the refreshed experience is aimed at “giving sellers the best platform to showcase their products and make it effortless for buyers to discover and engage with their inventory,” as per RJ Pittman, chief product officer at eBay. Read More

 

Control up to five Bluetooth devices with the Satechi wireless keyboard

By Jim Gresham on Dec 8, 2014

Apple only produces a small wireless keyboard, which is frustrating for users that require the benefits of a full sized option. Using an Apple wireless keyboard for home use is usually manageable. However, using a reduced keyboard in the office is more of a struggle. The lack of a number pad is extremely complicated when entering digit data and the like.

Why Apple is yet to produce a full size, Bluetooth keyboard is beyond understanding. Third party companies are starting to enter the space with designs that compliment Macs. For several years, Logitech and other companies offered wireless keyboards, but they are bulky and clash with Apple’s aesthetic. Satechi’s Wireless Smart Keyboard is filling the gap. Read More

 

Premium and Stylish Phiaton Bridge MS 500 Headphones [review + giveaway]

By Jim Gresham on Dec 8, 2014

Headphones are one of those device categories where more money does not necessarily equate to a better quality product. Many branded, read “designer,” headphones cost extra simply because they have a celebrity backing them. There is a single branded headphone line that gets most of the attention and offer a high price tag for entry.

There are ways to more intelligently choose a pair of cans. Make sure the sound is superior quality. Of course, pay attention to build quality, but sound is paramount when purchasing headphones. Start with plastic. If the entire headphone is plastic, start second guessing your purchase. Pulling the Phiaton Bridge MS 500‘s from the box was quite a rewarding experience, complete with machined aluminum, perforated leather, and red stitching. Read More

 

Selfy case kinda turns your iPhone into a GoPro

By Jim Gresham on Dec 7, 2014

Where do I even begin talking about selfies? Everyone loves a good selfie. They are wildly popular across the world, even causing South Korea to ban “unregulated” selfie stick sales. Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, SnapChat, and other forms of popular social media channels are completely filled with selfies. What caused our self obsession will never be explained, but the selfie is here to stay.

The selfie stick was one of the first hardware selfie assistants. I saw them around touristy places when I traveled, but didn’t think much of them about a year ago. Now, they are increasingly popular and being utilized in everyday places. Several iterations of selfie-inspired accessories cropped up and iLuv is capitalizing on the fad. Launching “selfy,” iLuv guarantees you will always have a quick way to snap a selfie and includes a laundry list of add-ons to assist. Read More

 

Cover your iPad with a professionally stylish felt sleeve

By Jim Gresham on Dec 6, 2014

Living a conflicted life, I am an iPhone nudist but also a hardware reviewer for iDB. As you can imagine, the struggle comes when reviewing accessories that cause the user to obfuscate the design and detail of an Apple iOS device with unnecessary appendages. I do not like bulky cases, even if their primary function is protection. I do not even like screen protectors because it stands between my finger and the glass.

When Inatek approached me about a sleeve, I jumped at the option. Sleeves are one of my favorite accessory genres because they allow the device to be used naked, while still providing protection for travel and day-to-day carry. The Inatek TPB-IM sleeve fits the bill. Read More

 

Perfectly cradle iPhone in leather with Nodus Access case

By Jim Gresham on Dec 4, 2014

It is rare to find a case I adore. Most of my hesitation stems from being an iPhone nudist, which I mention in most of my articles. Further complicating matters is my disdain for overly complicated designs or cases that interfere with the look and feel of iOS devices.

Many case companies get most things right. The protection level is perfect or the look and feel is spot on. Everyone does their thing. However, running into my third year of accessory reviews, most of the marketed cases are boring to me. In fact, my hardware review articles are quite infrequent due to the lack of truly new cases. Many companies are in their third or fourth iteration of the exact same case, merely updated for the newest iPhone form factor.

Standing in stark contrast to the mundane daily cases, Nodus introduced me to their Access collection. Even before holding the product, I thought to myself, here is a company that is doing it all exactly right. Shortly thereafter, I pillaged my mailbox looking for the iPhone 6 Plus Access case. Read More

 

Declutter your life with the NeatConnect cloud scanner

By Jim Gresham on Dec 2, 2014

In a recent attempt to go paperless, inspired by our own Jeff Benjamin, I began the search for a solid document scanner about this time last year. Thankfully, December is the month before CES and I hunted for a solution at the world’s largest end-user computer conference.

Finding the right scanner was not particularly important, because I had no idea what should accompany a scanner purchase. What features does one need when it comes to scanning? Other than using primitive scanners back in college or a full blown office scanner, there is no personal benchmark for home-use that I could rely upon. In my quest through confusion, I stumbled upon the Neat team members, who promised a scanning option that did not require tethering to a computer. The NeatConnect is a powerful desktop tool without the requirement of annoying USB cables. Read More

 

Twelve South’s Cyber Monday: 25 percent off BookBook cases for iPhones, iPads and Macs

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 1, 2014

Twelve South, a premium accessory maker that designs and builds cases, stands, chargers and other Apple-exclusive accessories, is having a Cyber Monday sale today.

Calling it the biggest BookBook sale ever, they’re taking 25% off all BookBook cases for iPhones, iPads and Macs and more, except for the Rutledge Edition finish.

Specifically, Twelve South’s iconic genuine leather BookBook cases for iPads, MacBooks and iPhones and the BookBook Travel Journal are all included in the promotion. The sale lasts today only and quantities are limited, so it’s good to move quickly on this. Read More

 

Good deal: 41% off this remote control mini drone

By Cody Lee on Nov 26, 2014

Folks looking to pick up something different this holiday season for that special someone, or even themselves, may want to check out the SKEYE Nano Drone. The remote control quadcopter is small enough that it can be flown almost anywhere, and right now deal site StackSocial is offering it at a steep discount.

UPDATE: You can get this mini drone for even cheaper from Amazon.

Drones have become increasingly popular in recent years, and are guaranteed to be a hot-ticket item this holiday season. The SKEYE differs itself from the rest of the pack with its size and agility. It measures just 1.57×1.57 inches and utilizes a 6-axis flight control System, making it perfect for performing stunts. Read More

 

OneCue adds motion gestures to your Apple TV and lets you control other smart home devices

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 25, 2014

EyeSight Technologies, a startup which specializes in machine vision, user awareness and gesture based interfaces, launched a very interesting home accessory yesterday, one that highlights a world of possibilities for a next-generation Apple TV.

They’re calling it the OneCue and it aims to connect and control your Apple TV, or other media streamers and smart home devices for that matter, using hand gestures akin to Microsoft’s Kinect with the Xbox One.

Supporting a plethora of TV sets, cable and satellite boxes, media streamers and AV receiver, the OneCue can turn on multiple smart home devices (i.e. TV, cable box and stere receiver) at the same time with the swipe of a hand or point of a finger. Read More

 
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