Archive for the ‘Accessories’ Category

The Airbar Gives a PC/MacBook touchscreen functionality

Airbar PicI am still terribly upset about missing CES this year, and one of the receivers of the Innovation awards was the AirBar. The AirBar is a product that can turn an ordinary screen into a touchscreen.

I know what you’re saying: aren’t all screens touchscreens? Yeah, you would think that, or at least I would. I mean, I just started a job where we have these somewhat old looking mobile devices, and they have touchscreens.

Anyway, with the Airbar, you do all the gestures that you can do on a touchscreen. You know, like the pinch, swipe, zoom, and scrolling. What is interesting is how you can do things that you normally can’t on a touchscreen smartphone or tablet. For example, if you have gloves on, you can totally use it. Also, if you have a brush or stylus, it works!

What is great is how easily that it installs, at least for the MacBook 15.6 inch version. Seriously, the Airbar sesnor just kind of plugs in there.

You should be able to purchase the AirBar on the main website for $69.

Posted by on January 26th, 2017 No Comments

JCPAL LINX Ultra Slim USB-C to 4-Port USB 3.0 Hub

jcpal-3I don’t know why I have never heard of JCPAL products before, but I can tell you that they certainly make some useful stuff. Today, I am going to be looking at the LINX Ultra Slim USB-C to 4-Port USB 3.0 Hub.

I believe that the purpose of the 4-port Hub is to connect to a range of USB A devices to your MacBook’s USB-C port. This way, you can access a hard drive, printer, or anything else that uses USB, which is just about everything.

MacBooks aren’t the only thing that the 4-port Hub is good for. I had a chance to try it out on my HTC 10, and I was able to use the 4-port USB A Hub to read files on thumb drives. I could also use it to recharge USB devices, as I just used the battery in my HTC to charge my Bluetooth headset.

In addition to that, the 4-port Hub has the latest 3.1 standard for high speed data transfer, and if you like it, check it out on the JCPAL site. It can be purchased in gold and silver for $49.99 CAD.

Posted by on January 6th, 2017 No Comments

Merry SKECH-mas, Part 2: Polo Book for iPhone 7 and Journal for Surface Pro 4 and iPad Pro 9.7

skech-4Since I am on a series about SKECH products, I decided to end it with things that close. So I am going to write on the Polo Book for the iPhone 7 as well as two Journal slim fit folio style case for the Surface Pro 4 and the iPad Pro 9.7.

The Polo Book for the iPhone 7/6S/6 puts Apple’s most famous smartphone in something that looks like a wallet. Most products that I see like these hold about three credit cards, and this one has one as well. This one has a transparent cover which is perfect for a driver’s license, and there is even a small pocket for cash, assuming you folded your bills and have no coins.

So it shuts on the iPhone 7 like a wallet, and it has a magnetic clasp to seal it shut. What is interesting is that Polo Book has an iPhone case that magnetizes and becomes a folio, so it is perfect for watching videos.

You should be able to purchase the Polo Book on the SKECH site for about $39.99 in Black, Brown, and Pink.

skech-5Now it is time to start reviewing the Journal, or at least one of them. I will start with a slim folio style case for the Microsoft Surface Pro 4. I will have to admit that this has an interior shell to provide maximum protection.

It looks black, like it could be leather, but it really is not. It has an anti-slip lining so you can view your Surface Pro 4 from many angles. It is compatible with the Surface keyboard, so you can find the perfect typing angle. Oh there is also a pen holder made for the stylus. Those things always help, really.

In short, it is very slim fit design, and it is a pretty interesting product. You should be able to get it on the SKECH site for $39.99.

Those who know my usual routine that I usually put separate pictures by the text about this, but I found that the picture for the Journal for the iPad Pro 9.7 looks just like the image that I found for the Microsoft Surface Pro 4.

Since I had both to review, I can tell you that they are different, but not completely different. I mean, they have a slim-fit design, hard shell, faux leather design, anti-slip lining for positioning, but the Journal for iPad Pro 9.7 has an Apple Pencil holder.

Oh, the price is different at about $34.99 on the SKECH site.

Posted by on December 17th, 2016 No Comments

Our Review of the MicFlip 2.0

micflip-2This is another time to review a MicFlip. This is the MicFlip 2.0, and it has a major difference than the other, unless I am wrong.

You see, I reported the MicFlip 1.0 (I am told this was the first version) had a flip-able micro USB, but not a flip-able USB port. The MicFlip 2.0 can flip both ends.

I don’t know if that makes sense, but hey, there is a lot of cool stuff that a charging cable can do. So if I had to use one charging cable, I would use the MicFlip 2.0. At this point, I don’t know what the MicFlip 3.0 can do.

I wasn’t able to find a link to the MicFlip 2.0 on Winner Gear website, but here it is on Amazon for $19.99.

Posted by on December 17th, 2016 No Comments

Merry SKECH-mas, Part 1: Crystal, Jewel, and Matrix Cases

skech-1It has been too long since I have received a SKECH product, but I am actually reviewing several today. This is a two-part review, and I’ll start with the SKECH Crystal.

The SKECH Crystal is a case for a smartphone, and the one particular product that I go to review is the one for the iPhone 7 Plus. It is one of those transparent ones that has a super clear UV coated scratch resistant PC panel. It can also protect the side with a shock absorbent molded frame.

In addition to this, it has some raised front screen rim that lines the case for “optimal screen protection”. If this sounds like something that you want/need, it is available on the SKECH site for $24.99.

skech-2Now, we have the Jewel Case. I realize that sounds like a case for jewelry, but this is a way to put some jewels on your smartphone case.

Well, it is a way to put “elegant stones carefully crafted and placed onto the back of the case for the ultimate fashion statement”. Yes, I took that from the website. I will have to say that it looks pretty shiny, but the jewels actually serve an alternative purpose.

The many jewels give it “griptape” feel. If you don’t know what that is, then you probably have never skateboarded. This is tape that feels like sandpaper so your feet can stay on it. In the same way, the jewels allow you to to keep a good grip on the phone.

You should be able to purchase the Jewel for the iPhone 7 in Rose Gold, Silver, or Gold for $49.99 on the SKECH site.

skech-3This next product here is the Matrix, named because the Matrix is so…oh come on, it’s 2016, who cares about the Matrix series anymore?

Yeah, I don’t know why it is called that, and if you called it the Cyrstal, no one would be able to tell the difference. It is, after all, a pretty transparent case, but it has a soft shell on the inside. It also has the raised rim for screen protection, and it has great side protection.

I will have to say that is an interesting case, and it is available in Clear, Gold, Rose Gold, and Space Gray for about $34.99 on the SKECH site at least for the iPhone 7/6/6S Plus.

Posted by on December 17th, 2016 No Comments

The Mod Mic 5 from Antlion Audio

mod-mic-1Yes, this is the ModMic 5, and I have actually heard that there are four of them before this. I haven’t really heard of them, but is it really possible to hear about every tech product in existence? I’m trying to keep up with them on this blog alone.

Needless to say, the ModMic 5 has an interesting function. It is made to add a high performance microphone to any pair of headphones. In fact, it has dual microphones for maximum flexibility. I suppose that people who don’t have a microphone on their headphones really need this product. It can attach to a pair of headphones with magnetic clasps, and it has a cable clasp for protecting wires.

It also comes with a Y-adapter and a powered USB adapter to allow for current generations of whatever devices that you could bring up. I should probably tell you about some of the features, it has a noise canceling uni-directional cardioid capsule for loud environments or a sensitive omni-directional capsule for high quality voice recordings. It has a modular mute switch and a flexible design.

So, if you want to get into the ModMic 5, head on over to the AntLion Audio site and lay down $69.99 for it.

Posted by on December 15th, 2016 No Comments

A Very Ventev Christmas: Chargesync, Mini Charger, Powercell, Minipro Window Dashmount, and Wallport

ventev-3I have had some great experiences with Ventev products before, and it began several years ago when I encountered them at a conference like CTIA or something. This is a company that makes some great accessories that can do just about anything. Today, I am going to be reviewing five products from them that were sent to me.

I’ll go ahead and talk about the Chargesync Alloy Apple Lightning Cable. There are several charging cables that you can buy from Ventev alone, and this one is for Apple devices and the one I got to review was 4 feet long.

I am told that this has “an ultra-sleek brushed aluminum housing and is braided with a high tensile wrap providing a premium finish and ‘no-fray’ durability”. The end result is a cable that feels very hard and tough, like a metal chain without the links.

It is pretty great, and it is available in eight colors for a price of $29.99 on the Ventev site.

ventev-2I’ll start with the Dashport r1240 mini, which is made for a cigarette lighter. Okay, those that don’t smoke probably use that thing near the radio as a charger, and so do I. It is kind of interesting how we learned to adapt, right?

Anyway, the Ventev r1240 mini charger is able to give your car an extra USB port, and it will charge up a 2.4A output. This allows for charging a smartphone or tablet at its most fast rate.

You should be able to purchase this at Ventev’s website for a price of $24.99.

ventev-4So let’s talk about the Powercell 3015+ Battery Charger, which is a portable battery and wall charger.

It isn’t anything that we haven’t seen before, and this is one of those types that have one of those retractable prongs so you can just plug it into the wall. What makes this really interesting is that instead of having 4 little lights to indicate how much power it has. Instead, it has a percentage on the side, so I will give them points for being different.

This mobile battery can deliver 12.5 hours of extra talk time, and it costs about $39.99 on the Ventev site.

ventev-1As for the Ventev Minipro Window Dashmount, this is one of those things that allows you to attach your smartphone to your windshield.

How does it do that? Well, it has one of those suction cup things where you push a handle down, and it will stick there. I’m sure that this thing has a proper name, but I’ll be darned if I know what it is.

Anyway, the suction-cup thingy is attached to a claw. This claw is spring loaded so it can open up and you can plant the smartphone in it. You can then use the phone’s map function safer on the road, and you can adjust the angle thanks to a ball-in-socket functionality.

This can be purchased on the Ventev site for about $24.99.

ventev-5Okay, it is time to write about the last product, the Ventev wallport r2240 charger. I’m not certain how to describe it other than a universal dual output USB port.

So yeah, you have not one, but two ports that you can use on a typical outlet. And yes, it can charge two devices at the fastest possible rate, and this includes tablets.

Yeah, I’m not certain what else I can say about this. I mean, I had to review it because it was sent to me. Okay, that is the first and last time that I will say that about any product that I am reviewing.

Anyway, all five of these products would make great stocking stuffers or gifts, and this one is available on the Ventev site for $29.99.

Posted by on December 14th, 2016 No Comments

Gumdrop Cases for the Holidays 2: DropTech Microsoft Surface

gumdrop-2Okay, now that we are in a series about Gumdrop Cases, it is time to talk about another one. This is the impact resistant, dual-layer silicone/ABS construction DropTech Microsoft Surface Pro 4 Case.

I’ll go ahead and say that it has that clean tire tread look that is characteristic to Gumdrop Cases. I’ll also go ahead and say that the design is very similar to the Hideaway Case for the iPad Pro 12.9. That is, it has a rubbery flap in the back to allow the Surface Pro 4 to lean back and become a kickstand.

gumdrop-2aBy the way, there is a full integration with the Surface Pro 4 kickstand, and the ports for the keyboard connection are fully accessible.

By the way, there is a built-in Microsoft Pen slot. Oh, and I think we can’t ignore that Tech and Learning magazine named the DropTech Microsoft Surface Pro 4 case a winner for their 2016 awards of excellence.

You should be able to get the DropTech Microsoft Surface Pro 4 Case on the Gumdrop cases website for $69.95.

Posted by on December 11th, 2016 No Comments

UAG for Christmas, Part 2: Monarch for iPhone 7/6S and Plasma for iPhone7/6S Plus

uag-3Okay, it is time for another review of a UAG product, and this time it is for some Apple products. This is the Monarch and Plasma series.

I’ll go ahead and start with the Monarch. I’m not certain why it is called the Monarch, but it looks like the King of all cases. It also looks really metallic, but it is pretty light, even with five layers of protection. I’m also told that this meets military drop test standards, and two times.

It is also soft too, as it has an impact resistant core. By the way, the edge is rather honeycombed, so you will get a secure grip on your iPhone.

According to the UAG site, this case is compatible with the iPhone 7/6S/6, and it can be purchase for $59.95 in Platinum or Graphite.

uag-4And now, I’ll move on to a phone for the iPhone 7 Plus with the Plasma Case. Yes, it looks like the Composite Case for the Samsung Galaxy S7 that I just finished reporting about.

Like that model, the Plasma Series has the armor shell and a soft core that is impact resistant. It is also very light, and I’ll go ahead and take something from the website to say it is featherlight.

If you want to get this guy for your Plus sized iPhone, it is available in clear, gray, and some very bright green color on the UAG site for $39.95.

Posted by on December 7th, 2016 No Comments

UAG for Christmas, Part 1: Trooper and Composite Cases for the Samsung Galaxy S7

uag-1So, it has been quite a while since I reviewed UAG products, and if you are not familiar with them, they make cases that can really take a beating. They are up there with some of the best accessory makers like Otterbox, Lifeproof, and so forth. This is one of a three-part series where I review six products.

I’ll go ahead and start with the Composite case for the Samsung Galaxy S7. It is very similar to case for the HTC One M9 that I reviewed a while ago.

The Composite case is very tough, and yet it has a soft rubberized grip around the edges. It is made of some kind of material which is quite light, and it has these cool bolt things on it that don’t do anything but add to the aesthetic quality.

You should be able to purchase the Composite case for the Samsung Galaxy S7 in Black, White, Rust, Ice (transparent), Ash (gray), Magma (Fiery Red), and Cobalt (Dark Blue) for $34.95 on the UAG site.

uag-2This next UAG product is the Trooper Case, made for the Samsung Galaxy S7. Like the Composite, it is also pretty hard, but the inside is very soft, like a rubber trampoline.

Perhaps the reason for its rubbery inner nature is that it is hollow inside. The Trooper is made so you can open it up and insert up to 4 credit cards. Because all you need is a driver’s license, credit cards, and no wallet!

You can rest assured that what you put in your Trooper wallet case will stay there, as it snaps shut very tight. In fact, it can be downright hard to open at first, and hopefully it will stay shut tight as time goes by.

You should be able to purchase the Trooper Case for the Samsung S7 on the UAG site for $39.95 in Black, White, or Rust.

Posted by on December 7th, 2016 No Comments