It’s been quite a while since Apple Watch came out (7 months!) and finally Apple has released an official dock accessory that might be worth a look. Maintaining typical Apple style, this watch dock is very simple…
Reviews November 23
Reviews November 20
The new Nanoleaf Smarter Kit with HomeKit support comes with a Smart Hub and two Nanoleaf Smart Ivy Light Bulbs to get you started. Like other popular connected lighting systems including the Philips Hue, you can purchase more bulbs individually once you’ve bought the Smarter Kit with the hub that allows a wirelesses connection for control from your iPhone or iPad and support for connecting up to 50 bulbs (the standard limitation among these types of products). But the Nanoleaf Ivy bulbs have a lot to offer in a package unlike anything else I’ve tested. The bulb is made entirely from a foldable printed circuit board with embedded LEDs… expand full story
Reviews November 18
It’s immediately noticeable that the new Lowry Cuff strap from Pad & Quill meets the company’s usual quality standard requirements. You’ll first likely notice the strap is handcrafted by the rugged look of the stitching that clearly wasn’t done by machine. And the leather, which the company notes is full-grain vegetable-tanned leather from Horween Tannery (a favorite source of leather for a lot of high-end goods), is extremely soft to the touch. Some leather bands are stiff and as a result a bit cheap feeling, especially before breaking them in a bit, but the Lowry Cuff doesn’t suffer from any of those issues. expand full story
Nomad is ending 2015 with a bang. Having moved from small plastic accessories into using luxury materials including metal, leather, and wood, Nomad is flexing its design muscles with four new Apple device chargers that are equally attractive and creative. There’s a deluxe metal Apple Watch/iPhone travel charger called Pod Pro, the wood-encased iPad battery pack PowerPlant, a hybrid iPhone battery and car charger named Roadtrip, and a Lightning battery-equipped leather Wallet. Three of the accessories look as if they were expressly designed to be holiday gifts, while the fourth is less exotic, but practical.
The common thread here is “portable power.” Pod Pro steps up from Nomad’s Apple Watch-only Pod (reviewed here) by more than tripling the power to 6,000mAh, and adding iPhone charging. PowerPlant packs an iPad-ready 12,000mAh cell inside a solid American Walnut wood block. Roadtrip serves as a car charger in your car, doubling as a portable iPhone battery pack for on-the-go use. And Wallet guarantees you’ll have a 2,400mAh battery and Lightning cable anywhere you go. Below, I’ll quickly walk through all of these new accessories so you can get a sense of whether any or all of them is right for you, or your favorite gift recipient…
Reviews November 17
There aren’t many iPad Pro-specific keyboards out there — Apple’s $170 Smart Keyboard and Logitech’s $150 Create (reviewed here) are the first two, if you can find them, with at least a few others announced and on their way to stores. But there’s really no need to wait on iPad Pro-specific keyboards, or spend a king’s ransom for one. Tons of iPad-compatible Bluetooth keyboards are already available, and thankfully at much lower prices.
Depicted with an iPad Pro on its box, Zagg’s Messenger Universal ($70) is clearly an alternative to Apple’s Smart Keyboard. Just like Apple’s accessory, Messenger Universal combines a full-sized keyboard with a magnetic iPad Pro-ready stand that folds down to a small size. But it skips the iPad Pro-only Smart Connector in favor of Bluetooth, and rather than serving as an oddly thick screen cover, takes the shape of a standalone folio that you can carry around as needed. Although it fits the iPad Pro perfectly, Messenger Universal works with all iPads — and other devices — so you needn’t feel constrained to using the keyboard with only a single tablet…
Reviews November 16
It’s no secret that Anker’s power accessories are some of the very best options available in their respective categories: its affordable, powerful wall chargers, car chargers, and battery packs have become sensations over the last couple of years. Heading into the holidays, Anker has debuted a fantastic option for both iPad and Retina MacBook users — the new PowerCore+ 20100 ($70).
Redesigned and improved from an earlier model, PowerCore+ 20100 uses even better materials and more powerful charging circuitry to expand its appeal. This time, PowerCore+ sports a USB-C port, enough amperage to recharge Apple’s latest 12″ MacBooks and iPad Pros, and notably faster recharging speeds. Having tested it with an iPad Pro, I was able to take the 12.9″ tablet from 0% to 100% power with plenty of juice left over, and the Retina MacBook is in the same camp. iPad Air and iPad mini owners can expect around two recharges, while iPhone users can get four or more recharges…