Wireless Stories August 27, 2015

AAPL: 112.92

3.23

LG debuts ‘Rolly’ universal, rollable Bluetooth keyboard

In a press release early this morning, Korean tech giant LG announced that it wants to grab a bigger share of the mobile accessories market. It wants to do so with Rolly Keyboard, a wireless, portable, rollable universal keyboard. Opened, it forms a four-row keyboard with close-to full size keys. What makes the keyboard unique is the method by which it’s stowed. Unlike the traditional single fold down the middle, each row of keys has a hinge, enabling the user to roll it up in to a ‘stick’.

Rolly Keyboard is powered by a single AAA battery and uses two Bluetooth 3.0 channels to pair to two separate devices and enable easy-switching between them, similar to the Microsoft Foldable Keyboard we reviewed recently. What’s more, it also features two arms to hold smartphones or tablets upright. It’s made from polycarbonate and black ABS plastic and LG claims it “offers satisfying tactile feedback often not found on flexible silicone keyboards”. Judging from the selection of keys on the device, it seems it’s going to be compatible with multiple platforms, including Apple-flavored devices.

Instead of offering a separate row for extra function keys for tasks like media playback, volume etc. LG has opted to use an individual ‘Fn’ key which — when pressed with a labelled key — will allow users to skip tracks, play/pause, change volume, pair devices and much more. And it won’t be alone on the accessory market his year:

“LG Rolly Keyboard is just one of the many premium input devices we’ll be unveiling in the coming months as we expand our accessories offerings,” said Seo Young-jae, vice president in charge of Innovative Personal Devices at LG Electronics Mobile Communications Company. “The goal was to create a product that could add more value to LG smartphones and tablets at the same time offering a unique design proposition that hadn’t been explored before.”

LG will show off its Rolly Keyboard at IFA in Berlin at the beginning of next month and launch in the U.S. in September. Pricing and availability details will be shared once it’s available to consumers.

Wireless Stories August 18, 2015

AAPL: 116.50

-0.66
Over the weekend, we learned some preliminary details about Apple’s planned updates for two of their most popular Mac accessories, the Apple Wireless Keyboard and Magic Mouse, in the form of FCC filings. Aside from new and improved connectivity thanks to Bluetooth 4.2, both accessories appear to have design deviations from their existing models, as detailed by the rough sketches accompanying the FCC filings. Based on these sketches, I decided to more fully visualize the changes Apple could be planning for an all new and more modern wireless keyboard based on other modern Apple product designs.

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Wireless Stories August 9, 2015

AAPL: 115.52

0.39

In this week’s episode of The Logic Pros, it’s the beginning of hardware month. As previously mentioned, we will be looking at a number of interesting hardware add-ons, instruments, controllers and more for Mac and iOS setups, starting with the puc+:

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Wireless Stories July 16, 2015

Solar cell touch surface patent

Apple tends to patent every one of its inventions that could possibly be used in a future product, so it can be difficult to read the tea leaves on which ones will eventually translate to product features. A new patent from Apple highlighted by PatentlyApple today, though, describes a technology that would be a very welcome remedy to battery life issues. The patent covers applying solar cells to a touch display surface like a trackpad or iPhone to store power for the device: expand full story

Wireless Stories June 17, 2015

Earlier this week we noted that Apple has refreshed the Beats by Dre wireless Beats Powerbeats 2 earbuds with new colors aimed at Apple Watch Sport users. Today, Apple has updated its Beats headphones website to promote the new line of headphones along with a new price: $179, which is $20 less than the previous price at $199.

With its onboard storage for music and Bluetooth connection, Apple is promoting these headphones as a way to tap into listening to music with the Apple Watch without the need of a connected iPhone. Even with the ties to Apple and the new Apple Watch-centric marketing campaign, the new earphones will still work with other Bluetooth media players.

We noted earlier today on 9to5Toys that some retailers are offering as much as $50 off of the wireless headphones, and Amazon is selling the accessory at various discounted prices ranging from $169 to $189.

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Wireless Stories June 14, 2015

Apple quietly updated its Powerbeats2 headphones to match Apple Watch Sport colors this week signalling a new move to focus audio accessories to the Apple Watch ecosystem. The new colors, which match the Apple Watch Sport Band colors of Blue, Black, Green, Pink and (updated) White, are available in Apple Stores but haven’t arrived at other retail locations yet.

Powerbeats2-apple-store

The Apple Watch can store and play 2GB of music without a tethered iPhone wirelessly via Bluetooth 4 and with watchOS 2 will get access to many more audio applications. It wouldn’t be out of character for Apple to release over the ear Beats headphones in matching colors or even PowerBeats Wireless to match the more expensive stainless steel Apple Watch.

The new Powerbeats2 headphones will of course work with all Apple and other Bluetooth 4 devices even though they appear to be focused on the growing Apple Watch market.

Apple Powerbeats2 Wireless earphones still come in their original, dare I say, dated colors for $199 ($189 Amazon, $169 Best Buy or $160 Ebay) but the original White version has been moved from the old lineup the the new lineup. Original urBeats wired headphones can be found for as little as $45 via 9to5Toys.com

(Via Benjamin Thomas) expand full story

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