By GREGG ELLMAN— Twitter.com/greggellman
So you got an iPhone, iPod, iPad, Kindle, Surface or some other handheld device with a fancy touchscreen. Now you think you’re Joe Cool or a Hip Hop person now. The gifting doesn’t end there, not so many hip, innovative accessories for your gadget.
Some offer protection – others are just fun. By necessity, I had a limit of seven choices, but the list could be endless if given the chance. Here are mine.
The Wren V5 Wireless Speaker System flat out rocks the house. Once you wirelessly connect to your music source, the sound fills any room – even a big room at that. I used the Airplay feature built into iOS devices. Android users have a model (Play-Fi ) built for them and a Bluetooth version is also available. The wireless version will stream up to 150 feet, depending on your music source and the Wi-Fi router. That’s great range compared to the 30 feet that you get with Bluetooth. Wren made sure the sound was first class but put the same effort into the design. The rectangular speaker curves on the ends, with your choice of bamboo or real rosemary wood finish. It measures about 16 x 6 x 4-inches and with the finish, makes a nice addition to any family room. There’s an auxiliary port on the back along along with a USB connector for direction connection of other devices.
www.wrensound.com $399 for the Apple Airplay or the Android Play-Fi or Bluetooth models
The Phiaton Chord MS 530 headphones cut the cord with Bluetooth technology connecting the fancy headphone to your music source. Once paired, the padded ear cups with 40mm titanium driver technology brings you amazing sound. An internal battery (needed for both the sound and noise canceling features) gives you up to 30 hours of use before needing a USB charge. There’s also a dual-microphone built-in so they can be used for handsfree phone calls. You can try them on your next flight but the attendants might catch on to the Bluetooth, which you still can’t use inflight.
http://phiaton.com $349 available at BestBuy.com, Brookstone and Amazon
MapiCases Milano portfolio leather mini iPad case is made with 100 percent premium leather and has a zipper closure on three sides and a soft lined fabric inside to keep your device well-protected and looking great. Inside the cover you’ll find dividers for paperwork, passports, business cards or whatever you want to store. You can get the leather case in black, brown, red and tan.
The Olloclip 3-IN-1 clip-on photo lens works on the new iPhone 5s/5c as well as the 5/4/4s, converting your iPhone lens to a fisheye, wide-angle and macro lens all in one. It clips on and off your phone in seconds The wide-angle lens nearly doubles the widths of your phone’s view; the fisheye gives you close to a 180-degree view and the macro is a 10X magnification.
The lens weighs just 0.6 ounces, measures 1.5 x .98 x .98 – inches and a cloth pouch is included for storage – and it’s handy for cleaning fingerprints off the lens. The brand new olloclip for the 5c, which was announced at Consumer Electronics show earlier this month, comes in phone matching colors of blue, green, pink, yellow and white.
www.olloclip.com iPhone 5/5s $69.99, 5c $59.99 and the 4/4s $69.99, available at Apple Store, Best Buy, AT&T and Target
Fat fingers are always a problem while typing on a touchscreen’s virtual keyboard for anything more then a quick message but the brand new Rapoo E6300 keyboard solves that problem. It’s an ultra slim (.22-inches) Bluetooth 3.0 keyboard made with eye-catching brushed stainless steel and plastic keys.
It measures 8 inches by just over 3 inches. An internal rechargeable lithium battery lasts for about a month on a 2-hour USB charge with the included microUSB cable. You can use it on an iPad, Android devices or any device that is Bluetooth equipped. As for the keyboard, it’s full-sized with 80 standard keys and 15 iPad hotkeys including homepage, play/pause and copy/paste.
www.Rapoo.com $49.99 available at WalMart
If a USB cable can be called amazing, Innergie’s MagiCable Duo is the one. It’s a unique 2-in-1 cable with a charging connections for both the Apple Lightning iPhones, iPads and iPods and Android mobile devices, all in one.
One end has a standard USB connection to plug into your power source. The other has the Lightning tip on the outside, which slides out (and stays attached) to expose the microUSB tip. If your confused, just buy it. Once you see it, you’ll know how cool this is.
www.myinnergie.com $29.99 available at Office Depot and Office Max
f your within 99.99 percent of the population you never back up any music, photos or videos until there is a crash crisis. The WD My Cloud storage system – it has nothing to do with the weather – is one of the easiest to set up and store your data. It looks like a hard drive (2, 3 and 4 TB capacities) and acts like a hard drive.
But you can access the content from anywhere in the world. After you’re done with the simple setup using the WD web-based interface on a Mac or PC, the software automatically detects the drive so you connect to it via the web. My Cloud has a Gigabit Ethernet connection, along with a Dual-Core processor, which results in blazing fast speeds to transfer files. Accessing files stored on the My Cloud is simple on mobile devices using the company’s WD My Cloud mobile app for iOS and Android devices.
www.WD.com bigger is better, go for the 4TB -$249.99, available at Office Depot and Fry’s Electronics