The Week in iOS Accessories: Full-body fun
This week’s roundup of iOS accessories includes gear for your hands, help for your wrists, and music for your ears. It’s a full-body edition of the roundup—read on for the new accessories we’ve seen this week:
Bang & Olufsen: This premium-audio-gear vendor has unveiled the Playmaker, a wireless speaker system that can play music from your iPhone or iPad via Apple’s AirPlay technology. The cube-shaped speaker system is small and light—it weighs a little more than a pound—but promises to stream high-fidelity music with clarity. B&O doesn’t offer pricing information on its website, but you can book a demo online to go to the nearest dealership to hear the Playmaker system for yourself.
Documont: The $79 Kowala is designed to give iPad users more hand- and wrist-space to sketch, draw, type, and perform other tablet functions comfortably and ergonomically. The device extends the non-touchscreen bezel area of your iPad for several inches in each direction, allowing you to rest the palms of your hands while using the device. It comes with an attached stand that lets you view the iPad, in landscape orientation, at angles ranging from nearly flat to nearly upright. The Kowala also comes with its own carrying bag.
HANDeBand: The great thing about the iPhone is that it’s a computer you can fit in your hand. The $29 HANDeBand improves on that experience by making it…easier to hold the iPhone in your hand. The device is a ring-sized grip that attaches to the back of your phone and slides onto your finger; the company says the grip can also be used as a kickstand, but suggests that “endless wearing options” will make it easier for users to text and email while holding their phone.
iBike: Ready to get in shape? The $279 iBike Powerhouse system is designed to do more than track your cycling—it aims to get you in top fitness. The system comes with a waterproof case and a mount, so you can see your iPhone right on your handlebars as you ride, as well as mountable sensors to measure your speed and cadence as you charge up a steep hill. The company’s companion app lets you pick any of a half-dozen plans that meet your fitness goals and guide you toward reaching them. You’ll be ready for the Tour de France in no time.
iLuv: Ready to head back to school? iLuv has unleashed a plethora of iOS dock-cradle products aimed at the scholarly set, including the $80 Vibro II, which has a shaking function to make sure you wake up when the alarm goes off; the $120 MobiAir Bluetooth stereo system; the $60 Sweet Cotton stereo headphones; and the line of FitActive headphones ranging in price from $20 to $50. If you sleep through class—or don’t have any music to listen to while on the quad—it’s not iLuv’s fault.
Macally: This maker of accessories has several new products on the market. Among them, the $35 20 Watt Dual Port USB Car Charger, for powering your iPhone and iPad on the go; a $15 green USB-to-30-pin-connector syncing cable; the $15 Bubjack, which lets you wind up and store your headphone cables; the $25 Suction Cup Mount for the iPhone; and the $40 Foldable Charging Stand for the iPhone 4 and 4S.
Scosche: A pair of new iOS-compatible headphones have arrived from this leading maker of audio accessories. The $130 RH656 on-ear headphones come in black or white, and include an inline remote to let users control their music or take phone calls—the headphones are pitched as being Siri-compatible for owners of the iPhone 4S. The $100 RH600 headphones offer similar style and sound quality, but lack the inline remote.
The Wrap: Here’s a $10 iOS-charging cord built to (natch) wrap up neatly when not in use. It attaches to the USB end of your iOS charger and features two prongs that, combined with the charger’s own metal prongs, turn the charger itself into a cable winder for the cord. The device is available in white, black, and “limited edition” colors, and a version is also available for European-style iPhone chargers.
USBFever: At first glance, the $64 iCelsius IP2 looks like a dangerous piece of equipment, what with its long, stainless-steel probe that attaches to your iPhone or iPad’s dock-connector port. Don’t worry, though: The only danger this temperature-measuring device poses is to undercooked food. The device lets you measure temperatures ranging from 30 degrees below zero—we’re talking Celsius measurements here—up to 120 degrees, and provides data to your phone that can be shared via Twitter or Facebook. Also new from this company is the $70 Retro Bluetooth Headset for the iPhone.