UAG 2017 Part 1: PLYO and Monarch Series, both for the iPhone X

Since the unveiling of the new iPhone, I have been itching to try out some of their newest accessories. I was pleased to receive in my mailbox the more new ones for the iPhone X. Today, I will discuss the PLYO and Monarch Series from our old friend, UAG (Urban Armor Gear).

Just as a reminder of the iPhone X, it was kind of a “one more thing” at Apple’s big event on September 12. The iPhone 8 will accommodate last year’s iPhone 7 model, but the iPhone X is an entirely different animal. It has a big price and a 5.8-inch screen that goes from edge to edge, with no home button.

PLYO Series iPhone X Case Review

UAG Plyo iPhone XI would imagine that it would be difficult to design a case for the iPhone X with its all-screen design. It’s pretty clear that they went with the hard plastic route, and the PYLO has a clear look, at least on its backside.

It is entirely different feel than the edges, which are very soft and flexible. It is designed to clearly be cushioning the sides, and the tactile buttons stand out well. Of course, it is set up to meet military drop-test standards.

It’s all very great, and it is pretty light as well. Just to let you know, it is set up for Apple Pay and the wireless charging feature. It’s a solid case, and can be purchased on the UAG site for $39.95 in Ice (Clear), Ash (Gray), and Crimson.

Monarch Series iPhone X Case

UAG Monarch iPhone XI’ll start by explaining that the Monarch is similar to PYLO, as it is Apple Pay and Wireless charging compatible, but it is a different set-up. Unlike the PYLO, it isn’t made with a solid plastic mold, but it boasts “5 layers of protection”.

Part of these layers is grain leather and alloy metal hardware. The end result is what has become almost a trademark for UAG with what looks like steel framework and black fill-in. Yeah, I can’t figure out how to describe it either, but there are some weird screws in it.

As for the sides, they are very soft with “honeycomb traction grip”, which you can see in the picture is aptly named. The tactile buttons are also prominent, which is also a part of their “premium design and precise engineering”.

The Monarch case is also available on the UAG site in Graphite, Platinum, Crimson, Black, and Carbon Fiber for $59.95.

IOGEAR GearGuard for the iPhone 7 and iPhone 8

IoGear GearGuardWell, since we have relaunched our website, I feel it is time to do something that I haven’t done in a while: a review of a tech product. In fact, we are going to do a lot of tech reviews in the next few months due to it being the holiday season and all.

Most of you know that I have reviewed a lot of screen protectors. Most of them are basically the same, and I was pleased to review the GearGuard from a company that I am pretty familiar with, IOGEAR.

Like most screen protectors, you don’t really know it is there. This is pretty interesting, because it has about 5 layers of protection. So it is good for stopping cracks, grease, water, dust, fingerprints, and all of them.

However, one of the best selling points of this products is that it is easy to install. It has one of those pre-installation tools that will insure that you get it right. So if you have a fear about not installing this correctly, I hope that I have assuaged it.

In fact, the price is very small at $10.95, and it can be found on the IOGEAR site at certain stores. By the way, this was made for the iPhone 7, but I’m assuming that it will fit the iPhone 8, because I have heard that the iPhone 7 accessories will fit the iPhone 8.

The Trainr Pro from Bodyguardz

Trainr ProI’ve seen a lot of great products from Bodyguardz, and the Trainr Pro is one of their more unique ones. They are really great at making screen protectors, but the Trainr Pro is both a case and an armband.

The Trainr Pro has a transparent case that has “unequal technology”, which means that it has some kind of design for an active lifestyle. The case is made of some kind of transparent plastic to show off the back of the Apple device. It also has some padding on the sides on the inside and out on the sides.

I suppose that it is called the Trainr Pro because it is made for the workout. This Trainr Pro has a removable armband that pops on and off, and it is also have some elastomer construction as well.

It is something that I would recommend, and it is available on the Bodyguardz site for $49.95 in Black and Gray, as well as Gray and Mint. Granted, that is for the iPhone 7 Plus, and there is also something available for iPhone 7.

Earin True Wireless Earbuds Review

Only_Buds_front-620x400With all the activity we do, it’s great to not to have to be tied down to something. Many earbuds have you hooked up to a line trailing down your arm, neck , back, or leg. There’s an option, though, for those who don’t want strings to hold them down. We were sent these wireless EARIN earbuds to review, so here we go.

Coming from a Swiss startup, these Bluetooth- enabled earbuds come in a nice package. The box that holds them looks like a cardboard box, but it opens and closes magnetically, and the magnets also attract the earbuds so that they don’t fly out when you open the box. We still recommend that you carefully open the box because there still is a chance for them to fly out, and those little guys are miniscule and round, and they roll.

The box contains the wireless earbuds, a charging capsule reminiscent of the flashy-thing in the Men in Black movie, a micro USB cable to charge the flashy-thing, stabilizers to make extra sure they won’t come out of your ears with heavy activity. There’s also the Comply foam tips that give a tight seal, or if you would rather, there are Silicone tips.

The case, or flashy-thing, will hold the earbuds as they charge, and you had better be sure to put these earbuds in the case when you aren’t using them, as that is the only way to turn them off. If you just put them in your pocket, the battery will drain on them, so it’s best to keep them in the case. It will likely be a safer place to keep them anyway. A simple light will turn on while it’s charging the earbuds, another light on top indicates that the case is charging itself.earin-true-wireless-earbuds-with-charging-case-and-aweni7-5

There are complaints that sometimes the right ear bud will cut out, and there is sometimes lag when watching videos. The left ear bud is the one that connects to your device, and the right one is a slave, so it’s not always as reliable as the left.

Other wireless earbuds on the market might run less expensive on price, but we haven’t been able to compare the sound quality of them. We have reviewed the Jabra¬†wireless earbuds, and they are about $100 more, though the Earins used to be the same price, and the Jabra had the addition of being able to take calls because of the microphone. You can’t take calls on the Earins. You can also check your heartrate with the Jabra pair.

Earin does have a special app that you use on your phone to control the bass boost, the balance of volume in each ear, and you can see how much battery life you have left in them. Speaking of battery life, there is about 3 hours of battery life in them, and you can charge them up to 3 times in a fully charged capsule.

Earin is coming out in the future with the M-2 earbuds. These look to be more advanced with a microphone and a way to control them with touch interface on the earbuds. The question will be whether they are comparable in price and quality to the other wireless earbuds out there. Still, at $149, the M-1 might be what you are looking for.

Yesgo Cases for the iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, and iPhone 6/6S

YesgoWe do a lot of reviews of iPhone cases on this website, so it is always refreshing to receive one that I have never heard of. In this case, it is the company of Yesgo, which I am going to just assume is not from this country. The issue is for a product that does so much, it comes at a good price.

But we will get to that (the price). The Yesgo cases have a slim design that allow for full protection with dual layers of shock absorption. The interior of it is textured with all the rubberized goodness that comes with more expensive cases.

In spite of the rubberized case, there is a strange metallic feel on some of the cases. I got to try out the Gun Metal and Rose Gold variations of the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, and they feel like metal, assuming that they aren’t. Yeah, I don’t know if that makes sense.

Okay, so I will recommend them, especially because the price is pretty good at $14.73 CAD, and I’ll let you do the translation for currency, but it is quite good. I will give you the link to the Yesgo website, and you should just purchase one if you are in the market for an inexpensive website.

ZAGG Week Part 4: Invisible Shield glass + luxe and glass + privacy for the iPhone 7 Plus

Invisible Shield Glass LuxeOkay, it is more for ZAGG week, and this time it is a word from Invisible Shield. If you are not familiar with Invisible Shield, they used to make these really interesting plastic covers. I’ll always remember when I first met them at CES, when they threw in their products into a Tupperware box filled with nails and screws, and then they shook the box. The company grew a lot, and they sell a lot of products like screen protectors, such as the glass + luxe and the glass + privacy.

The most obvious feature of the Invisible Shield is it offers 3X shatter protection, so you can hit it with an hammer. You also have some serious scratch protection, so feel free to throw it into the box of screws. Oh, and there is also some serious smudge protection, which makes it very easy to clean.

All of that, and it comes with a lifetime warranty. It is available on the ZAGG site for $44.99, and it comes with complementary colors of black, rose gold, white, gold, and titanium.

Invisible Shield apple_iphone_7_plus_screen_privacy_glassOkay, now it is time to talk about the glass + privacy. This has a 3X shatter protection, which means that it should stand up to smashes, scratches, and smudges. It seems to brag about Ion Matrix technology, and I’m not certain if the previously mentioned product has that.

What makes it a glass + privacy is that it has two-way and side-view privacy. This means that you can check your email, text messages, and anything on your smartphone and not worry about someone else checking it out. There is also the special feature of reinforced edges.

Unlike the glass + luxe, it doesn’t come in any different colors. You should be able to purchase the glass + privacy for $44.99 on the ZAGG site.

Another Patchworks Review of Screen Protectors, Botanical Garden Cases, and Air Straps for the Apple Watch!

ITG-Privacy-Stealth-Packages-for-iPhone-7-plus-for-Shopify_1024x1024This is another time where I get to review Patchworks products, and I am very pleased to review three types today. I will start with the screen protectors.

The ITG Plus Galaxy S7 is a scratch resistant screen protector is one that we have discussed before, but for iPhones. It also has that great oleophobic coating which is great for wiping off fingerprints and other types of stains. And it is of course, shatterproof. You can purchase it for $18.99 on the Patchworks site.

Then there is the ITG Stealth Screen Protectors. In addition to having the shatterproof and oleophobic coating, the Stealth has a unique privacy filter. The privacy filter is made from 3M technology allowing you, and not some stranger watching over your shoulder to see what is on your smartphone.

What makes it better is that the version for the iPhone 7 also works for the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6S. This goes for the Plus sizes too. You can purchase the ITG Stealth for the iPhone 7/6S/6 here for $34.95 and here for the iPhone 7 Plus/6S Plus/6 Plus at the same price.

Patchworks-Level-Botanic_Garden-image-002_1024x1024And now it is time to review another product that we have reviewed before from Patchworks, cases for the iPhone 7 and the iPhone 7 Plus. These ones are of the Botantical Garden series.

This means that they have some serious floral print on them, and they come in Rose, Hydrangea, Blue Bird, Wild Flower, and Russian Blue. There is more than just flowers for these cases, but some rib pattern that traps some air in order to provide some protection for your smartphone if it is dropped. In fact, it can survive 26 consecutive free fall drops at 4 feet at all kinds of angles.

If you are the type that is into floral print, then you can purchase it on the Patchworks site here for the iPhone 7 and here for the iPhone 7 Plus for the price of $26.95.

Patchworks-Air-Strap-for-Apple-Watch-Series-2_001_grey_1024x1024So, let’s end this review with a product for the Apple Watch with the Air Strap. The purpose is to make the Apple smartwatch a lot more classy as the Air Strap is made of premium leather and thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU).

The Air Strap is so named because it has a tunnel structure that allows air to flow, for your skin needs to breathe and you won’t have that sweaty wrist that comes with most watches.

You should be able to purchase the Air Strap on Patchworks for the 38 mm version here and the 42 mm version here. The price is $49.95 in black, gray, white, brown, and red.

Pelican Marine for the iPhone 7

pelican-marine-waterproof-iphone-7-caseI have to admit that I believe now that Pelican is just as good as creating protector cases that might be even better than Otterbox. Pelican has proven itself over and over again with their recent iPhone 7 offerings with Voyager and the Protector. Now, they have the appropriately named Marine.

The Marine has the Pelican stamp of approval that has kept the business in the protection racket since 1976. This one really keeps the iPhone 7 safe from the four destructive elements of water, snow, dirt, and dust.

It has a five layer shell with serious impact absorbing materials, not to mention a scratch resistant coated screen protector. Yeah, that is a lot of terrific protection at IP68, and you can look that up if you want to know what it is capable of.

After trying this one out, I am very amazed at how thin it is, not adding to the initial volume of the iPhone 7 by much.

You should be able to purchase the Pelican Marine Case on the Pelican website for about $74.99 (marked down from $80.00) in colors of clear, clear with black, and clear with teal.

Speck Review of Three iPhone 7 Cases: Presidio SHOW, CLEAR + GLITTER, and GRIP

Speck 1I always love reviewing Speck products, and it has been a while since I have reviewed them. Fortunately, I had a chance to review three for the iPhone 7.

I’ll start with the Presidio SHOW, which is for the iPhone 7 and the iPhone 6/6S. I believe that it is called the SHOW because it is transparent, which means it shows just about everything on the back of the iPhone.

In addition to the transparent style, it also has this shock barrier on the side which is made of Impactium. That sounds like one of those sci-fi names, like unobtainium from Avatar. This is a good shock barrier to protect the iPhone, so isn’t that great?

Yeah, it is, and the Presidio SHOW can be purchased on the Speck website for $39.95.

Speck 2The next up is the Presidio CLEAR + GLITTER. It is very similar to the Jewel case from SKECH, but it doesn’t have the fakey rhinestones. This is very glittery, and it comes in one solid glittery shape and has some embedded glitter crystals.

Like the Presidio SHOW, it is also made of Impactium. I don’t know if that has officially become an element, but this is definitely a thing now.

You should be able to purchase the Presidio CLEAR + GLITTER on the Speck site for about $44.95 in Clear/Gold Glitter, Onyx/Gold Glitter, and Rose Pink with Gold Glitter/Rose Pink.

Speck 3So, let’s talk about the Presidio GRIP. Let’s just talk about why it is called the GRIP, and it has some divets in it for some extra grip.

In other words, you could have your hands slippery in oil, and you could probably use your iPhone. Or at least you can hold it, but using the touchscreen could be problematic.

Of course, it has Impactium, because apparently all Speck smartphones have that these days. You can get the Presidio Grip on the Speck site for about $39.95, and it comes in Black/Black, White/Ash Gray, Graphite gray/Charcoal Gray, Twilight Blue/Marine Blue, Lipstick Pink/Shocking Pink, and Whisper Purple/Lilac Purple.

Bezalel Latitude, Futura X, and Futura X Stand

Bezalel 1Okay, today, I’m going to talk about three products from Bezalel. I thought that name sounded familiar, and it is apparently from the Bible. Bezalel was the chief artisan of the Tabernacle, and now the company designs some great accessories.

I’ll start with the Latitude, which is apparently the first universal wireless charging case for the iPhone. That is quite a big boast, and honestly, it would be really just great if the iPhone has this ability.

If you are not familiar with wireless charging, it is a cool way to just put your mobile device down on a platform and let it charge. Some devices have this ability already, but some need a case to get it working. The Latitude is a case for the iPhone 6, and yes, it is coming soon for the iPhone 7.

The Latitude is designed to fit in the iPhone, and then the connector slides into place. It is quite a great case, and even more practical. It can be purchased on the Bezalel site for about $49.90 in black or white.

Bezalel 2Since I have talked a lot about wireless charging, I should probably talk now about the Futura X. This is the pad that you can put down, and it has a Qi compatible receiver. Qi is that wireless charging standard that allows for just slapping your mobile down and getting juice.

There is some magnetic alignment happening there, which is just what you need to keep your device engaged for power. it is always good to have one of these around, because they are just plain handy.

Anyway, you can purchase the Futura X on the Bezalel site for about $49.99, also available in white or black.

Bezalel 3Now it is time to end with Futura X Stand. This is a stand that is made for the Futura X charging pad so you can use the smartphone while it is charging.

I mean, who wouldn’t want to watch your phone’s video content while it is charging. Like the wireless charger, it is also very handy. Heck, you can use it without the wireless charger, and it would still be useful.

In fact, as a stand, it would be worth the price. It costs $20.00 on the Bezalel site, but it isn’t available for black and white. It does seem to be available in black and white.