Review: iHome’s iBN10 sheds the dock and alarms for a minimalist new four-speaker design

ibn10-1

I’ve reviewed a lot of iHome clock radios over the past nine years. They weren’t all formulaic, but there was a very clear evolutionary line from the original 2005-vintage, iPod-only iH5 to the iPad-ready iDL95 released last year: take two speakers, stick a clock in the middle, center a dock on the top, then make the enclosure sort of flat but pleasantly curvy. iHome had a winning general concept and look, which it updated annually with small feature, color, and shape tweaks. But its new $120 model iBN10 breaks the mold in several ways.

The dock’s gone, the clock has been glammed up and shifted to the right, and there are four speakers inside, rather than the standard two. iBN10 is also atypically handsome, built and billed as an “executive music system” by discarding the faux metals that iHome’s midrange speakers have become known for, and adding speakerphone functionality. This isn’t iHome’s first Kleenex box-sized speaker, but it’s definitely the most sophisticated.

Read more

Review: Mad Catz’ C.T.R.L.i and Micro C.T.R.L.i bring overdue competence, fair pricing to iOS game controllers

ctrli-8

Apple’s iOS game controller design guidelines were clearly inspired by Microsoft’s Xbox controllers, but Mad Catz has taken the concept a step further: its new C.T.R.L.i ($60) and Micro C.T.R.L.i ($50, available for $46) for iOS look so much like Xbox One game controllers that you might struggle to tell them apart in a dark room. While the full-sized C.T.R.L.i is very close to the Xbox One controller in footprint and weight, Micro C.T.R.L.i squeezes all of the same functionality into a smaller but nearly identical shape.

Best of all, since they’re more reasonably priced than earlier iOS controllers, both are good enough to recommend to any iOS gamer… assuming you own or want some iOS games with controller support.

Read more

Grab a big iOS App designer bundle (MSRP: over $1000) for only a few bucks

From 9to5Toys Specials:
Programming-classes-cheap

Specials.9to5toys.com is running a **special** on an iOS app designer bundle that up and coming iOS app designers will likely want to take advantage of.  This is an “NYOP bundle”, meaning that people can name their own price to get 2 courses (Learn Mobile Web Design Using Bootstrap & Learn To Build Cross Platform Apps). Or, if you beat the average price, you’ll get the entire bundle (7 courses & assets). This evening that is only a few bucks plus 10% goes to charity of your choice and high bidders get a chance to win a Gold iPad Air/ iPhone 6. The bundle includes:

Read more

Apple releases iOS 8.1.2 with fixes for bugs including ringtone issues

iOS 8.1.2

Apple has released iOS 8.1.2 as an over-the-air software update for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch users running iOS 8. The latest release contains bug fixes for users as well as a fix for a problem regarding ringtones purchased from Apple being removed from devices. We’ll check out the software release for any significant changes or issues and update accordingly. Read more

Apple’s new ‘Change is in the Air’ ads show novel uses for the iPad Air 2

ipad-air-2-ad

Apple released a new iPad Air 2 campaign during Sunday football today showcasing various unique physical and software applications for the iPad Air 2.

Featuring the song “Who Needs You” by The Orwells [iTunes Store, YouTube], the ad is a departure from last year’s iPad Air which were focused on a single user.

iPad Air 2 isn’t just the thinnest and lightest iPad we’ve ever created. It’s the most powerful. From the studio to the classroom, the field to the garage, it’s helping people discover new and better ways to do the things they love. Imagine what you’ll do with it.

Microsite embedded below: Read more

Hyper’s Black Friday: $50 off the world’s only external MacBook battery, $10 battery packs (Reg. $50), $2 iPad cases (Reg. $30), much more

Hyper-BF-deals-01

Hyper, the brand behind a number of popular Mac and iOS products we’ve reviewed in the past, is today offering its best deals ever for Black Friday. The sale includes big deals on external battery packs and other iOS accessories including the world’s only external MacBook battery.

Some of the notables: A $10 3600 mAh battery pack (Reg. $49), a $20 7200mAh battery pack (Reg. $70), and up to $50 off the company’s external battery for MacBooks. Head below for the full list of deals.  Read more

Review: Kenu Stance is a must-have miniature iPhone tripod

Kenu Stance compact tripod

The Stance compact tripod, Kenu’s latest accessory for iPhone, is one of my favorite gadgets I’ve tried out lately. It’s a tiny, pocketable stand for holding up your iPhone during video recording, FaceTime calling, and more. The Kenu Stance attaches to your iPhone or iPod touch by connecting to the Lightning port where you charge your phone, and it locks in securely for standing up iPhone in either landscape or portrait orientation. Check out my hands-on with the Kenu Stance below… Read more

Yosemite & iOS 8 How-to: Send and receive phone calls from your Mac and iPad

Screenshot 2014-10-18 16.37.10

Now that Yosemite is out, with iOS 8 running on your iPhone, you can send and receive phone calls from your Mac and your iPad (also running iOS 8). This is one of the features of Continuity, which further integrates and connects your Mac and iOS devices. Continuity also includes Handoff, Instant Hotspot, AirDrop and SMS Relay (as part of the iOS 8.1 update).

Sending and receiving phone calls from the Mac and iPad is a benefit because sometimes when your iPhone rings it’s not where you are, but instead you are on your Mac or iPad. Now you can pick up the phone call directly from the Mac or iPad and don’t have to worry about stopping what you are doing to rush and find the phone. In this how-to article I will discuss how to set up and disable Phone Relay, how to send and receive iPhone Cellular Calls.

Read more

Apple Store goes down to get ready for pre-orders of the new iPads

store

The online Apple Store is down as Apple readies the site to take pre-orders of the new iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3.

The iPad Air 2 is 18% thinner than the original Air, adds Touch ID, M8 motion-sensing chip and an AX8 processor that Apple says is 40% faster than the previous model. It also has camera and wifi improvements, and is available in gold …  Read more

‘iPad Air 2′ and ‘iPad mini 3′ with Touch ID & Burst Mode confirmed, show up early in iTunes

iPad-2-Air-Mini-3-leak

Apple’s iTunes Store has just made a little bit of a slip-up (and with perfect uncanny timing): screenshots for the iOS 8.1 iPad user guide have just appeared within iBooks and include Apple’s upcoming iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3. Of course, Apple will be formally debuting these devices tomorrow.

The screenshots confirm that both new tablets will include nearly identical designs to their predecessors and the addition of Touch ID sensors in the Home button. Another new feature confirmed by this leak is a new Burst Mode (first introduced with the iPhone 5s) for the iPad Air 2 (image below).

These images also indicate that the new tablets will be named “iPad Air 2″ and “iPad mini 3,” which means that Apple will bringing the numbering scheme for names back to the iPad lineup. Of course, the presence of this user guide means iOS 8.1 (with Apple Pay) is likely to drop tomorrow, too.

Besides the tweaked designs and Touch ID sensors, a gold color option, and a stronger A8X processor, improved camera optics, and new software can be expected at least on the new Air. Apple will also discuss the Mac line tomorrow, including the new iMac with Retina display and OS X Yosemite.

Boom?

Read more