2014 iPad iPhone iPod Buyers' Guide from iLounge.com


Sparrow Sparrow

Sure, Apple’s free Mail app for Macs is quite good, but its starch-white look is getting kind of old. Sparrow ($10) takes all of Mail’s best features and combines them with Twitter’s and Reeder’s Mac aesthetics. The result? A minimalist email client that lets you get in and out of your messages in a flash, with support for the most popular providers including Gmail, Mobile Me, Yahoo, and AOL. Read More


Twelve South BookBook for Air

We chuckled a little at Twelve South’s original version of BookBook—a MacBook case designed to look like an oversized, aged book—but every iteration gets a little better. Today’s just-announced BookBook for Air ($80) is the coolest one yet, sold in separate versions for the 11” and 13” MacBook Air. Each is made from padded genuine leather, and the 11” version is small enough to actually pass for a book. Or at least a “short story,” as the company puts it. Read More

Kanex mLinq

Back in the old days—say, last year—the idea of a Mac running four displays was impossible unless you had a customized Mac Pro. But now that Kanex has released mLinq ($99), which adds an HDMI adapter to any Mac with an open USB port, it’s possible that even current 27-inch iMac users will be able to pull off that feat. Most recent Mac owners will be capable of running up to three displays at once. Read More


Vaja Mouse Pad

A hundred thousand throwaway mousepads have been designed for PCs. Only a few have been created specifically for Apple’s mice. Vaja’s entirely leather Mouse Pad ($69) is one of the best of them. Offered in twin tones—one for the border, one for the center—the Mouse Pad can be had in a white and red color combination immediately, or customized with 18 border and 5 center colors. All of the colors are in Vaja’s soft, wonderfully padded Caterina leather, which the company notes is more sensitive to showing marks in lighter colors; after two years of active use, our sample (originally covered here) is still in pretty great shape. Read More


GelaSkins Magic Trackpad Skin

Some might say that your Magic Trackpad looks boring—just another silver, glassy item for your silver, glassy computer. If you want to recapture the customization options that mousepads used to offer, GelaSkins’ Magic Trackpad Skins ($15) might be right up your alley. We like the company’s stickers for the iPad 2, and now you can get a version to make your pointing device just as distinctive as you. Read More


Apple Wallpapers

Great wallpaper can completely change the look of your Mac’s desktop. That’s why we really dig the collection of images at Apple Wallpapers, a site devoted to collecting and organizing Apple-themed artwork and photographs. Whether you’re looking for something to fill a 30” Cinema Display’s giant 2560x1600 screen, or a small, old 800x600 monitor, you’ll find it in the collection of over 500 images. And they’re all free. Read More

Livescribe 2GB Echo Smartpen

Pens are always going to have their place; even with computers, iPads, and smartphones everywhere, handwritten notes aren’t going away. But why not find a way to make the old work with the new? That’s what Livescribe has done with its Echo Smartpen, now available in a 2GB starter pack model ($100). Armed with a rechargeable battery, Echo records everything you hear and write, turning your words into searchable, sendable text. You dock it with your Mac using an included USB cable to access the recordings. Read More


Backblaze Online Backup

Everyone knows Mac backups are important, but having redundant “just in case” duplicates can be a challenge. Backblaze simplifies the process with its online backup tool ($50/year). It automatically backs up all of your data in the background, including the stuff that’s on connected drives. If you ever need to restore data, just click a button on the company’s secure website, or order it on a DVD or hard drive. On top of the backup, Backblaze has just added a Locate My Computer option—think MobileMe’s Find My iPhone for your Mac. Read More


Altec Lansing Expressionist Classic FX2020

Altec’s Expressionist Classic FX2020 speakers didn’t blow us away at their original $80 asking price, but these days, they’re selling for $40—a sweet price for a sharp-looking entry level audio system. Made from 6.25” square pieces of translucent acrylic plastic with 3” drivers in the center, the Expressionist Classic system comes with its own power supply and audio cable, ready to plug right into your Mac’s audio-out port, and a nice match for current Cinema Displays and iMacs. Read More


Chris McVeigh LEGO iMac

Admittedly, more than one iLounge editor keeps some LEGOs near his workspace, so it’s not too much of a surprise that we’re digging this LEGO iMac ($100). This unofficial set is the closest thing you’re going to get to that fake Playmobil Apple Store from April Fool’s Day. Read More


Tumult Hype

Everyone knows that HTML5 is the future. Steve Jobs said so and heck, even Adobe is getting there. The modern web development standard allows you to create interactive websites that are viewable across platforms, iOS devices included. In the past there was no really easy way to put an HTML5 site together without some hard hand coding. That’s why we’re so impressed by Tumult’s new Mac app, Hype ($30 introductory price). It’s here to help you say bye bye to Flash. Read More

Apple Magic Trackpad

As longtime users of both desktop and laptop Mac models, we have plenty of experience to bring to the trackpad/mouse debate. With the Apple Magic Trackpad ($69), we can finally put the debate to rest. Now available as a no-cost option with new iMacs, it brings one of the best features of Apple’s MacBook line to its desktops—minus the whole portable computer thing, of course. Read More

$32 and up

Creative Dexterity Mac Keyboard Jewelry

If you can’t get  logo clothing directly from the company store in Cupertino, there’s still a way to show off your fandom: Mac Keyboard Jewelry from Creative Dexterity ($32 and up). Read More


Manfrotto Unica VII Messenger Bag

If you find yourself regularly toting around a DSLR, a larger MacBook Pro, and various other effects, odds are you’d fall into the “Pro” category of gear—which means you need an equally “Pro” bag to match. And the Manfrotto Unica VII Messenger Bag ($110) is certainly that. With enough space for a full-sized DSLR with lens attached, 17-inch MacBook Pro, and plenty of extras, it’ll carry pretty much everything you need. Read More


Parallels Transporter

Maybe you just got your first Mac. Or you’ve had one for years and need to transfer some files from an old PC. Either way, it can be a pain to move key files from a Windows machine if you don’t have a ton of experience or time. Apple Stores offer One to One membership services to do this for you, but you’ll need to pay a $99 fee. Luckily, Parallels has introduced Transporter, and for now, it’s only 99 cents. Plus tax. Read More

Sign up for the iLounge Weekly Newsletter


iLounge is an independent resource for all things iPod, iPhone, iPad, and beyond.
iPod, iPhone, iPad, iTunes, Apple TV, Mac, and the Apple logo are trademarks of Apple Inc.
iLounge is © 2001 - 2014 iLounge, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Terms of Use | Privacy Policy