Belkin’s Thunderstorm handheld home theater now available for iPad 4

By Christian Zibreg on Jul 26, 2013

Accessory maker Belkin back at January’s CES 2013 unveiled a handheld home theater system for Apple’s iPad, the Thunderstorm. The amplification system docks your iPad with integrated front-facing speakers and air channels for the powerful bass sounds. The speaker case was initially limited to older 30-pin iPad 2 and third-generation iPad devices. Today, Belkin announced Thunderstorm availability for iPads outfitted with Lightning I/O, namely the iPad 4… Read More

 

Bluelounge unlocks portable charging with Kii

By Jim Gresham on Jul 20, 2013

In a recent turn of events, two companies released a keychain Lightning charger. You may remember, last week we ran a giveaway for an extremely similar product. However, if you read through the previous post, there were a few things the competition could do better.

Enter, Kii by Bluelounge. A clever pun, Kii is a keychain charger, which is produced both for Lightning and 30 pin options. This little guy is currently attached to my daily key ring and traveled with me for the past couple weeks. Offering a charge on a moment’s notice, the Kii is the perfect companion not only for travel, but also daily use… Read More

 

Saidoka dock cradles iPhone 5 at the perfect angle

By Jim Gresham on Jul 9, 2013

Review fans will be quick to recognize the Bluelounge company name as an accessory manufacturer we tend to frequently cover on iDB. Regularity is due to the creative products Bluelounge designs and produces on a continuing basis. The company is an international design studio that creates relevant and well detailed accessories for Apple products. The creative director, Dominic Symons, believes Bluelounge products should solve a problem, look great, and be well built.

To that end, today, Bluelounge announces the Saidoka desktop iPhone companion that is “docked by your side.” The clever and streamlined design utilizes a minimal footprint and is an officially licensed MFI dock with a Lightning charging pin assembly built into the cradle. Thanks to a friend at the company, I enjoyed playing with the dock before its public release… Read More

 

Keep your Lightning cable handy with Nomad [review and giveaway]

By Jim Gresham on Jul 8, 2013

Running out of the house with an empty iPhone battery can be catastrophic. We have all been there, stuck in the office, out of town, on a long car ride, when the low battery indicator pops up begging for more juice. Despite many 21st century successes, smartphone batteries still weigh us down. Unfortunately, this causes me to keep a Lightning cable near my nightstand, at the iMac, around the office, and in my car.

To prevent such problems, Kero developed the Nomad cable. Cleverly designed as a keychain, Nomad is a 3″, fully Apple certified lifesaver. The seemingly simplistic resolution to an everyday problem prevents charging headaches…

Read More

 

The iDockAll can hold and charge any iOS device, even with the case on

By Cody Lee on Jun 30, 2013

Folks in the market for a new dock for their collection of iOS devices may want to check out the new iDockAll from Wiplabs. The accessory can charge either your 30-pin or Lightning device, or both, depending on which model you get—it even works with cases.

And not only is it universal, but it looks great and is extremely functional. Made out of a single block of solid aluminum, the iDockAll would fit right in on a desk with other Apple hardware, and its unique design allows you to keep using your device as it charges… Read More

 

Accessory vendor bypasses iOS 7 Lightning check

By Christian Zibreg on Jun 24, 2013

One of the little-known features of iOS 7 that not many people will like is its background check of whether or not a third-party accessory is hooked up to the your iPhone, iPod touch or iPad using a non-certified Lightning cable.

We’ve know Apple has tightened its MFi program rules (MFi stands for ‘Made for iDevice’) and iOS 7 seems to be stepping up a cat and mouse game between Apple and non-MFi vendors…. Read More

 

AT&T installing solar-powered charging stations around New York

By Cody Lee on Jun 19, 2013

This is quite interesting. It appears that AT&T has begun installing charging stations in parks throughout New York to help keep smartphones and other mobile devices up and running. The stations are solar-powered and capable of charging a wide range of gadgets.

The carrier says that the new Street Charge project was born out of its work during the recovery from Superstorm Sandy. After the hurricane ripped through most of the eastern US, AT&T setup charging stations in the blacked out areas. And now it’s expanding on the idea… Read More

 

New Apple patents granted, covering multitouch, iPhone 5 and Lightning

By Ed Sutherland on Jun 18, 2013

Among the nearly 40 Apple patents granted today by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) are ones covering multi-touch technology, as well as designs for the iPhone 5 and the Lightning connector. The widest-ranging group of patents involves the multi-touch technology for the iPhone 5 and latest iPads and iPods.

Meanwhile, Apple’s Senior Vice President of Design, Jonathan Ive, is given lead credit for designing the iPhone 5… Read More

 

New Trunk Lightning cable doubles as posable iPhone Stand

By Cody Lee on May 23, 2013

It’s almost impossible to stand out in the crowded space of smartphone accessories these days. This year’s CES alone saw nearly 1000 new mobile add-ons, from 590 different manufacturers. And that’s just a single 4-day trade show.

But it’s no surprise that the folks over at iLoveHandles have managed to do it with their new ‘Trunk’ Lightning cable. The understated accessory may look like just another Lightning to USB cable, but it actually doubles as an iPhone stand… Read More

 

Bluelounge smartly redesigns the MiniDock for iPhone 5

By Jim Gresham on May 14, 2013

Covering several Bluelounge products in our review section, astute readers will now be somewhat familiar with the product line. Creating items from packs to docks, Bluelounge attempts to combine form and function for their small, yet clever array of items. The company, taking hints from both art and architecture, prides itself on “forward design aesthetic.”

Well over a year ago, the MiniDock became a staple item for users trying to get rid of desktop clutter. A portable charging dock made carrying a 30 pin cable around the house a thing of the past. Today, Bluelounge updates their MiniDock with Lightning compatibility and refines a few nice touches at the same time. I was able to get my hands on a prerelease model and am impressed with the new features… Read More

 

USPTO publishes Apple’s extensive Lightning connector patent

By Ed Sutherland on May 9, 2013

Much has been written about Apple’s new Lightning connector, introduced with the iPhone 5 to supercede the aging 30-pin Dock connection. Thursday, the United States Patent and Trademark Office published three Apple patent filings from 2012 detailing how the Lightning connector is built. Among the questions addressed: how did Apple create an “orientation agnostic” connector design while also ensuring stability and proper alignment? Read More

 

Accessories makers embracing Bluetooth to side-step Lightning, AirPlay and Apple exclusivity

By Ed Sutherland on May 6, 2013

A growing trend by accessory makers to adopt wireless connections could disconnect Apple from a significant source of revenue. In a departure from the days of the iPod, where accessories such as speakers were designed with 30-pin connections fitting only Apple devices, add-on device manufacturers are have increasingly been turning to Bluetooth for some time to connect a growing number of mobile devices – many not made by Apple.

The reason for the transition includes the rise of Samsung, Amazon and other iPhone and iPad rivals, along with the feeling Apple kept secret from accessory makers its new Lightning connection. As a result, some of the largest accessory makers are turning to the wireless Bluetooth standard to avoid any more surprises from Apple, according to the New York Times… Read More

 

Pre-orders for Nomad 3-inch USB-to-Lightning cable open, shipping in June

By Christian Zibreg on Apr 19, 2013

The three-inch Nomad Lightning cable made waves when it was announced back in November 2012. This handy little USB-to-Lighting accessory fits your key ring and comes to the rescue when you find yourself out and about with a dying iPhone and no charger in sight.

Originally a Kickstarter project, creators Kegan & Roberto developed the Nomad according to Apple’s strict requirements in order to earn the sought-after Lightning accessory certification. The Nomad cable is available for pre-order now, priced at $24.99 a pop (no shipments expected until June)… Read More

 

RokDock is the new iPhone throne [review + giveaway]

By Jim Gresham on Mar 12, 2013

Rokform is quite a regular on the review stream around these parts and it should come as no surprise. Before you assume, no, this is not a sponsored post. Simply, Rokform makes extremely quality products and I am always impressed by them.

The most recent chunks of T-6061 aircraft grade aluminum that Rokform CNC machined into a usable hunk of metal is the RokDock. The heaviest accessory on my desk, the three pound dock is a hyper-masculine throne upon which my iPhone rests. The RokDock is just awesome, no need to complain about my open love affair with their products… Read More