The best HomeKit products announced at CES 2017

By Andrew O'Hara on Jan 9, 2017

CES has finished up and just like last year, we saw a barrage of new HomeKit items that will be soon coming to market. Last year we saw the additions of a bunch of new products like ceiling fans from Hunter, several new iDevices products, FirstAlert’s HomeKit safe, a whole range of switches and sensors from Elgato (that we reviewed), and much more.

This year there are even more new products, which is very promising. Admittedly while there are lots of new entrants, not everything is as original as a ceiling fan or safe. Instead we are seeing a lot of products that are making the HomeKit ecosystem more seamless, and giving you options when you look for something like a lock, thermostat, or wall switch. Read More

 

Speck’s Presidio cases offer scratch and drop protection for your new MacBook Pro

By Anthony Bouchard on Jan 6, 2017

Apart from the colorful array of iPhone case offerings Speck is known for, they’re also fabled for their popular transparent MacBook Pro cases, which are built to prevent scuffing across your computer’s metallic surface while you travel with it.

Speck is now announcing a new breed of Presidio-based transparent cases for the all-new 2016 MacBook Pro at CES 2017, which for the first time, brings as much as four feet of drop protection to Apple’s premium notebook computers thanks to the company’s patented Impactium material. Read More

 

OtterBox expands uniVERSE system to iPad Air 2 & 9.7-inch iPad Pro, adds new partners

By Anthony Bouchard on Jan 6, 2017

OtterBox’s popular uniVERSE modular case system for the iPhone 6 and later will soon be expanding to the iPad. The company has announced its plans to launch a new case soon for the iPad Air 2 and 9.7-inch iPad Pro specifically, along with a number of new accessories to complement them.

All uniVERSE case systems are designed so you can add or remove compatible accessories to your device, such as camera lenses, external batteries, and tripods among other kinds of things thanks to special adapters built into the back of the case. Read More

 

Incipio’s OX case lets you charge your iPhone 7 and listen to music simultaneously

By Anthony Bouchard on Jan 5, 2017

Among the many things being unveiled at CES 2017, accessory maker Incipio has just unveiled a new case for both the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus called OX that has a built-in 3.5mm headphone jack in addition to a Lightning port.

The case intends to do away with the convoluted process of charging your device and listening to music at the same time even when you don’t have a pair of expensive wireless headphones to solve this problem for you. Read More

 

AirBar gives your MacBook Air a touchscreen display

By Cody Lee on Jan 3, 2017

You’ll soon be able to give your MacBook Air a touchscreen display, courtesy of AirBar. Neonode on Tuesday unveiled a Mac version of its laptop dongle at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas that will allow you to navigate macOS via touch.

The AirBar magnetically attaches to the bottom of your 13.3-inch MacBook Air display and connects via USB. It uses Neonode’s patented zForce AIR technology to emit an invisible light field that can sense touches from fingers, gloves, and even a paintbrush. Read More

 

CES 2016 roundup: day three

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 6, 2016

It’s day three of the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Nevada, so various gadget announcement keep coming at a faster pace than we can blog. Today’s roundup of CES 2016 includes some notable highlights that might interest our Apple-loving audience, including splash-proof speakers, in-ear buds with an integrated heart rate monitor, a new activity tracker from Withings that can last 8 months between charges and more. Read More

 

Misfit debuts stylish new activity tracker and its first wireless in-ear headphones

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 6, 2016

Wearable devices maker Misfit at CES 2016 announced new products that build on its expertise in health and fitness tracking. A new activity tracker from the company, called the Ray, tracks your movement and sleep and resembles a bracelet with a cylindrical aluminum body.

Another new product from Misfit, a first for the company: the Specter in-ear wireless headphones with dual driver technology and a built-in accelerometer sensor for tracking your activity and sleep when worn. Read More

 

CES 2016 roundup: day two

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 5, 2016

The Consumer Electronics Show is underway this week in Las Vegas, Nevada. Yesterday, we shared a few Apple-related CES announcements on iDownloadBlog before realizing there are too many product unveilings happening at the show for us to be able to cover them without cluttering the homepage with CES stuff.

That’s why we’ve made a decision to run daily roundups of the most important CES announcements you might be interested in, starting with today’s round up of CES 2016. Read More

 

All-new iHeartRadio app coming to Apple TV soon with live stations and podcasts

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 5, 2016

iHeartRadio Media announced today at CES 2016 in Las Vegas that a whole new radio-streaming app will be coming to the fourth-generation Apple TV. In addition to a redesigned interface, it will allow users to experience all of the core elements of the service and let them access thousands of live and custom stations, including podcasts.

Both registered and unregistered users will be able to play live and custom radio stations, view For You recommendations, save favorite stations to a brand new My Favorites Radio feature and more, all from the comfort of their couch. Read More

 

Fitbit unveils new ‘Blaze’ fitness smartwatches

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 5, 2016

Wearable company Fitbit at CES 2016 in Las Vegas announced a brand new lineup of fitness-focused smartwatches, marketed under the Blaze moniker. Featuring a sleek design and easily interchangeable accessories, the Blaze lineup offers an enhanced fitness and workout experience with advanced coaching and other features.

All devices are outfitted with a color touchscreen, have a built-in heart rate tracker and SmartTrack exercise recognition and support interchangeable bands and frames. Read More

 

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

 
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