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


CES 2015: Pioneer unveils new CarPlay receivers with Sirius radio, advanced Bluetooth and more

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 7, 2015

Shortly after Kenwood went head to head with Pioneer with its own aftermarket receivers with CarPlay integration, the company responded by announcing a second-generation Networked Entertainment eXperience (NEX) in-dash receivers with CarPlay support.

Building on the features introduced in the previous NEX series (the $1400 AVIC-8000NEX, $1200 AVIC-7000NEX, $900 AVIC-6000NEX, $750 AVIC-5000NEX and $700 AVH-4000NEX), the updated receivers offer better displays, support for Bluetooth connectivity and are Sirius XM-Ready. Read More


CES 2015: Mophie out with Juice Pack battery cases for iPhone 6 and 6 Plus

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 6, 2015

Renowned accessory maker Mophie is out of the gate with the first ‘Made for iPhone’ licensed battery cases for Apple’s iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus.

Their new Juice Pack protective battery cases promise to boost the run time of your iPhone 6 by 120 percent, or up to sixty percent in the case of the larger iPhone 6 Plus which already packs a notably stronger battery than its 4.7-inch sibling.

The California-based company said the new cases for Apple’s last handsets are now available for pre-order. Read More


CES 2015: Moshi launches AirPlay speaker with eye-candy cabinet design

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 6, 2015

Moshi, the maker of premium accessories and peripherals for Apple devices, announced today at CES in Las Vegas a gorgeously crafted wireless speaker with built-in support for AirPlay, a media streaming technology from Apple.

Because AirPlay is directly supported by the Spatia speaker hardware, as Moshi is marketing its new product, you can stream music from an iPhone, iPod touch, iPad or Mac to the speaker without being connected to a home Wi-Fi router. Read More


CES 2015: AT&T unveils LTE case for Wi-Fi iPads

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 6, 2015

If you ever wanted to buy a cellular iPad but couldn’t wrap your head around forking out an extra $130 for LTE functionality, AT&T has you covered.

Here at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, the #2 U.S. wireless carrier announced a new case that gives Wi-Fi-only iPads the ability to connect to its high-speed 4G LTE network.

It’s basically a case with an integrated mobile LTE hotspot and it’s available in several editions, including versions for the iPad Air and iPad Air 2, as well as all three generations of the iPad mini. Read More


CES 2015: Polaroid shows off new tablet, mobile printer, Wi-Fi camera and more

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 6, 2015

Like virtually every other tech company under the sun, Polaroid, one of the most recognized brands in the world, took to CES to show off latest innovation.

Among the announcements that are of interest to our Apple-focused readers, Polaroid showed off a mobile printer, a social instant camera and a Wi-Fi connected camera that all work with iPhones and iPads.

They also announced a new Android-driven tablet, an easy to use automobile dash cameras designed to capture the unexpected, a 65-inch 4K ultra high definition LED TV with HD ultra slim sound bars and TV wall mounts and more. Read More


CES 2015: a true wireless charging system beams power to gadgets from 20 feet away

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 6, 2015

At CES, Energous presented a true wireless charging system that beams power to devices through the air, from 20 feet away, Engadget reported.

They’re calling it WattUp and it uses a proprietary solution that got demoed at CES yesterday.

The technology is ready for seamless integration into a common residential setting, providing the ability to charge a multitude of devices free of any wired connection or charging pad. Read More


CES 2015: HomeKit-compatible Switch controls your home with Siri

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 5, 2015

Debuting at CES 2015 as the world’s first HomeKit-certified products on the market, a smart power switch from an accessory maker called iDevices makes it easy to turn on anything in your home using your voice, no hub required.

Marketed as the Switch, this smart power switch uses voice capabilities of Siri to help manage your home from wherever you are. Read More


CES 2015: SuperTooth unveils inexpensive multiroom wireless speaker system

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 5, 2015

SuperTooth, a maker of Bluetooth speakers hailing from France’s Nebias, unveiled at CES a multi-speaker system that does more than fill your room with wireless music.

They’re calling it the Multiroom System and it uses up to five speakers connected by Bluetooth and controlled by an app for iOS or Mac to bring music to different rooms of your home.

Setup couldn’t be simpler.

The master speaker receives the music from your device via Bluetooth and then streams it wirelessly to up to four satellite speakers anywhere in your home, using proprietary RF wireless technology. Read More


TapSense wants to put ads on your wrist

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 5, 2015

If you thought Apple’s Watch would be totally free of pesky ads, you have another thing coming. A mobile marketing firm called TapSense announced at the CES show yesterday a brand new software platform to bring contextually aware advertisement to Apple’s hyped Watch.

Billed as a programmatic ad platform, the TapSense SDK for app makers, along with programmatic APIs for brands, makes opt-in advertisement on the Apple Watch a reality.

The question is, are we as a society ready for coupons and other marketing offers on our wrist? And if so, will Apple actually allow third-parties to inject advertising into Glances and Notifications on the Watch?  Read More


CES 2015: Alcatel Onetouch launches affordable iOS-friendly Watch with a round face

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 5, 2015

Alcatel Onetouch, the brand for mobile phones and mobile broadband modems made by TCL Corporation and Alcatel Mobile Phones, announced at CES 2015 in Las Vegas its foray into the hot market for wearable devices.

Specifically, the firm showed off the Onetouch Watch, a line of premium-design smart watches that work with the iPhone and cost more than half as much as the Apple Watch, which will start out at $349. Read More


CES 2015: Misfit makes Shine wearables stand out with Swarovski crystal

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 5, 2015

With its fashionable Watch, Apple has officially entered the jewelry business. As one might imagine, the development has now captured the attention of the wearable industry which appears to be racing to add some shine and glamour to their accessories.

At the CES 2015 in Las Vegas, Misfit has announced a partnership with the crystal jewelry maker Swarovski to produce a range of fitness and sleep-monitoring sensors outfitted with a Swarovski crystal.

The Swarovski Shine Collection, as it’s called, is basically a range of fully waterproof accessories which includes new wireless activity and sleep monitors and nine matching accessories for all Shine devices. Read More


CES 2015: Withings launches iOS-compatible $150 Activité Pop fitness watch

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 5, 2015

Yesterday at the 2015 International CES show, accessory maker Withings unveiled a new lineup of Activité Pop fitness watches with activity and sleep tracking capabilities.

A successor to the Activité watch that Withings unveiled at last year’s CES, the new Activité Pop is available in several vivid colors and features a secondary hand dial to show your progress as determined by the Health Mate companion app. Read More


iDB travels to CES 2015

By Jim Gresham on Jan 2, 2015

The long and weary January expedition to International CES is now upon the consumer electronics industry. Each year, the entire industry descends upon Las Vegas, NV with more than 150,000 attendees. Noted as one of the largest trade shows in the world, CES is quite a spectacle. Everything from app powered toothbrush games to global players like Sony, Samsung, and LG will be in attendance.

Each year, we head out to the event in hopes of learning about new iOS devices and accessories. Through a week’s worth of events, press conferences, and booth meetings, the upcoming landscape for Apple-related tech is revealed. From Sunday, January 4 through Friday, January 9, I will be trekking across Vegas’ strip in search of the newest items, which will hopefully include Apple Watch accessories.

CES 2015 marks my third consecutive trip and having two previous shows under my belt, the planning strategy this year continues to evolve with my experience. Three trips hardly make one an expert, but no longer an amateur, my novice skills are at work in preparation for one of the most exciting weeks of the consumer electronic year. I will be flying out on Saturday, January 3, getting settled in, then surviving the next seven days.  Read More


CES 2014: NueVue’s new cases claim to remove 99% of bacteria on iDevice screens

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 10, 2014

Case maker NueVue at CES 2014 unveiled a new line of cases which it claims have been designed to remove up to 99 percent of bacteria residing on the surface of your iPhone and iPad’s screen. The cases clean the screen and offer antimicrobial protection every time you remove the device.

Available for the iPhone, iPad and iPad mini, with tablet sporting a handy leather strip to keep the device secure, the new cases make possible antimicrobial protection by using microfibers licensed from medical company BioCote… Read More

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