USB Stories March 27

AAPL: 105.67

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In addition to Apple’s newly released USB-C to Lightning Cable, which allows for faster iPad Pro charging, Apple also released a new Lightning to USB 3 Camera Adapter. This new $39.00 adapter is geared towards allowing users to easily transfer photos and videos from digital cameras to the iPad Pro.

But it’s no secret that this adapter has other talents, such as being able to power USB microphones for applications like podcasting, song recording, and voiceovers. Apple says that you can also connect USB accessories like hubs, Ethernet adapters, MIDI interfaces, flash readers, and more.

12.9″ iPad Pro owners received an added bonus as well, that being able to take advantage of the iPad Pro’s USB 3 transfer speeds. All of this considered, is the Lightning to USB 3 Camera Adapter a worthwhile investment? expand full story

USB Stories December 22, 2015

AAPL: 107.23

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Two weeks after quietly updating the Lightning to SD Card Camera Reader to USB 3.0 and adding iPhone support to the formerly iPad-only accessory, Apple is signaling that similar changes may be coming to its cousin, the Lightning to USB Camera Adapter. Notably, Apple has updated the USB Camera Adapter’s official page to add support for the iPhone 5, 5c, 5s, 6, 6 Plus, 6s, and 6s Plus, mirroring a change to the SD Card Camera Reader that was discovered alongside iOS 9.2. Though iPhone compatibility was added in iOS 9.2, Apple previously left the USB Camera Adapter’s page unchanged.

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USB Stories December 1, 2015

AAPL: 117.34

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Leapfrogging the one-device HomeKit “smart plugs” previously released by iHome, ConnectSense has debuted the Smart Outlet with Apple HomeKit ($80), which combines two Siri-controlled wall power outlets with a 2.4-Amp USB port. Using Wi-Fi, the Smart Outlet lets you separately monitor and control each of the three-prong outlets, while the side-mounted USB port has enough power to refuel any iPad — including the iPad Pro — or iPhone at full speed.

Designed with a subtle light bar running across the top, bottom, and front, the Smart Outlet easily replaces a single three-prong outlet, plugging in and covering the existing wall plate with no need for special wiring. ConnectSense notes that Apple’s HomeKit provides end-to-end security for its monitoring and control features, enabling you to safely use Siri or a free app for iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch to turn off lights or activate connected devices from afar. When paired with other accessories, HomeKit also enables you to create “scenes,” simultaneously turning off your lights, locking your door, closing your garage door, and setting your thermostat. A gallery is below…

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USB Stories August 12, 2015

AAPL: 115.24

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Nearly one year after launching its first devices with NFC chips, the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, to enable the Apple Pay mobile payments system, Apple has joined the official NFC Forum as a top-tier sponsor. Along with the sponsorship role, Apple has joined the forum’s Board of Directors, according to the forum’s official website. The site lists representation from Aon Mujtaba, a Director on Apple’s Wireless Systems Engineering team for the iPhone. Paula Hunter, the NFC Forum’s Director, made the announcement by saying that the organization is “delighted to welcome Apple to [its] board of directors as an NFC Forum sponsor member.”

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USB Stories April 29, 2015

Keyboards are important — so important that many people won’t “work” on their iPads without real keys to type on. No one complained when desktop mice gave way to laptop trackpads, or when trackpads evolved into tablet touchscreens, but the switch from physical to virtual keyboards has been met with plenty of resistance… specifically because virtual keyboards offer no resistance. There’s something about the responsive, up and down movement of actual keys, known as “travel,” that people clearly prefer over tapping on completely flat glass.

I’ve tested a lot of keyboards, and since I rely upon them professionally every day, I have some strong opinions as to the best options for different types of Mac and iPad users. You might be surprised by my advice, as it bucks a couple of Apple’s trends (“smaller!” “thinner!”), but if you’re like me, you’ll be a much happier typist if you “think different” on this topic than the folks in Cupertino…

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USB Stories March 31, 2015

Microsoft shifted its focus when it introduced the Surface Pro 3 last year to target both the iPad and the MacBook, but today the company announced a more consumer level iPad-like version of its tablet simply called the Surface 3 with the same $499 starting price as the iPad Air 2.

Google also unveiled a collection of new competitively priced hardware including new Chromebooks and a Chromebit HDMI running Chrome OS for under $100 … expand full story


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