RichardSolo, the new company by The Sharper Image founder Richard Thalheimer, has introduced its new Backup Battery for iPhone/iPod. The compact battery connects to the iPod and iPhone via 30-pin connector, and features a lightweight black aluminum case with LED status lights. According to the company, the 1200 mAh lithium-ion battery can take hundreds of charges and can provide up to double the usage time of the iPhone or iPod’s built-in battery. Other features include automatic on/off charging technology to prevent overcharging, a mini-USB port for charging both the Backup Battery and the device at the same time, an included retractable USB charging cable and AC wall charger, and Made for iPod and Works with iPhone certification. “I’ve spent my entire career researching electronics and discovering the best new gadgets,” said Thalheimer. “I’ve never been more excited about a new product. Not only does it look great, but it also functions intuitively and quickly to charge an iPhone on the go. Most importantly, it is the most powerful pocket-sized unit you can buy.” The RichardSolo Backup Battery for iPhone/iPod is available now and sells for $50.
Maclove has introduced Face off for iPhone, a new line of decorative, protective coverings and matching wallpaper backgrounds. The Face off combines a clear, transparent screen protector with decorative designs that cover the rest of the iPhone’s face. A separate graphic-covered sheet is supplied for rear coverage; both the front and back pieces can easily be removed and reapplied. Based in China, Maclove is currently seeking Western distribution for its products.
Aliph has introduced its new Jawbone Bluetooth Headset, the first substantial update to its award-winning original Jawbone. The new Jawbone is 50 percent smaller than the original, and like its predecessor it features military-grade noise elimination technology called NoiseAssassin. According to Aliph, the technology, originally developed for DARPA, provides the Jawbone with ten times the voice clarity of competing headsets. Other features of the new Jawbone include touch controls, a textured shield inspired by noise abatement surfaces, faster processing to help eliminate noise bursts, and a new fast-charge battery that charges up to 80 percent capacity in just over half an hour. The new headset weighs 10 grams, provides over four hours of talk time and over eight days of standby time, supports Bluetooth 1.1, 1.2, and 2.0, and includes three differently-sized earbuds, four earhoops (two leather, two slim), and a magnetic USB cable and wall charger. The new Aliph Jawbone Bluetooth Headset is available now in matte black and will soon be available in silver and rose gold, and sells for $130.
Just Mobile has introduced its new Xtand mobile stand for the iPhone. The Xtand is made from solid aluminum and features a 360-degree rotating iPhone holder that grips the device on all four corners, leaving all ports and controls accessible. The Xtand’s base is reminiscent of Apple’s recent monitor and iMac bases, with a smooth curve at the bottom and a hole in the middle for cable management. Pricing and release information for the Xtand has yet to be determined.
Vaja has introduced its new iVolution Stripes leather case for iPhone. The iVolution Stripes shares its basic design with the iVolution Top, offering a flip-down protective front flap, open access to all buttons and controls, and an optional rear clip. Unique to the iVolution Stripes is a customizable five-stripe color scheme, which allows the user “more than one million possible color combinations.” The color of the far left and far right stripes is the same and carries over onto the case’s back, which is a solid color. The Vaja iVolution Stripes for iPhone is available now and starts at $100.
Kensington has introduced its new Mini Battery Pack and Charger for iPhone and iPod. The Mini is a small, Dock-connecting accessory that can power and charge an iPhone or iPod, offering extended play times of up to 30 hours for music, six hours for video, and three hours of talk time. The small black body of the Mini houses a high-capacity, rechargeable lithium-ion polymer battery pack and a LED battery meter. The device also includes a retractable USB charging cable for recharging the battery pack. The Kensington Mini Battery Pack and Charger for iPhone and iPod is available now and sells for $50.
ShadesCases has introduced its new Shades for iPhone. Like the company’s iPod cases, Shades for iPhone are made from 100% Polyurethane, measure only .4mm thick, and offer built-in clear screen protection, while allowing for full usability of the iPhone’s touch screen. Shades for iPhone are available now in 11 different colors, and sell for $17 each; the company is currently offering a “Buy two get the second half-off” promotion on the cases as well.
OtterBox has announced its new limited edition pink “Strength” Defender series cases for the iPhone and iPod nano (with video). Otherwise identical to the normal Defender series, 10% of the purchase price of each pink Strength case will be donated to the Avon Breast Cancer Crusade to support access to care and finding a cure for breast cancer, with a focus on the medically underserved. The OtterBox Defender Strength Case for iPhone will sell for $50, while the Defender Strength for iPod nano will sell for $30. Both will be available soon.
Digital Lifestyle Outfitters has introduced its VentMount dashboard mounting systems for the iPhone and iPod touch. The VentMount is a 2-part hard black plastic car mount featuring a secure mounting device, which is attached to a vehicle’s air vents, and a shell which holds the iPhone or iPod touch. The shell allows full access to all ports and controls, and features an integrated rotating belt clip that latches onto the mounting device for in-car use, doubling as a desktop stand away from the vehicle. “The VentMount is an essential car accessory for every iPhone user,” said Andrew Green, vice president of marketing for DLO. “Whether quickly checking a map or taking a call, the iPhone is always secure and perfectly situated for easy, at-a-glance viewing. Once you’ve used the VentMount, it’s hard to live without it.” The DLO VentMount for iPhone and VentMount for iPod touch are available now, and sell for $25. For more information on the DLO VentMount, see our First Look article.
iHome has announced its iP99, its new iPhone-compatible dual alarm clock radio. The iP99 features a built-in Universal dock that can play and charge both the iPhone and docking iPod models, the ability to wake or sleep to custom playlists, stereo drivers with matching Reson8 speaker chambers and 10W of power, line-in, a full-featured remote with iPhone and iPod menu control, adjustable snooze, an AutoSet clock, a high-contrast LCD display with dimmer, and more. In addition, the iP99 is specially shielded to protect against TDMA noise and interference from the iPhone. The iH99 now available for pre-order through Brookstone, one of two retailers offering the product through the end of summer, or from iHome’s website. iHome also plans to offer the iP9, an iPhone-specific version of the iH9 we’ve reviewed, as a less powerful and less expensive alternative. The iHome iP99 will be available in June and will sell for $150.
Digital Lifestyle Outfitters has announced the release of its HybridShell and VideoShell cases for the iPhone. Originally announced in January, the HybridShell for iPhone is made from a combination of a crystal-clear polycarbonate front and a textured, silicone back that features raised, black rubber “dots” for added grip. It also provides open access to all iPhone controls and ports, and comes bundled with a DLO Surface Shield screen protector. The VideoShell for iPhone is a clear polycarbonate case that offers full access to all ports and controls, features an integrated kickstand for hands-free video viewing, and comes with a DLO Surface Shield invisible screen protector. The DLO HybridShell and VideoShell for iPhone is available now for $25 and $20, respectively; the company is also offering its Surface Shield iPhone screen protectors in packs of five for $15.
Griffin Technology has introduced its new ClearBoost case for iPhone, a unique polycarbonate case that aims to help boost the device’s antenna reception. The black and grey case features an internal booster antenna that runs along the inside of the case from the base of the iPhone (where its antennas are located) up and out the top, providing slightly improved signal reception. Other features include open access to all ports and controls, a snap-together design, and an included screen protector. The Griffin ClearBoost for iPhone is available now and is currently being offered online for $30, with a suggested MSRP of $35. Our full ClearBoost review is available here.
Griffin Technology has introduced the Wave, a new polycabonate case for the iPhone. The Wave utilizes a unique wave-shaped closure that provides greater interlocking surface area for a more secure seal. Other features include full access to all ports, buttons, and the iPhone’s display, and an included screen protector and cleaning cloth. “Wave is something truly new in case design,” said George Campbell, Industrial Design Director at Griffin Technology. “It gives customers what they expect in a case for iPhone; but we also found a new structural way to make the case more secure. This new functional design also looks very cool. It’s instantly recognizable as something unique and different.” The Griffin Wave for iPhone is available now in translucent red, pink, orange, green, blue, and black, and sells for $25. For more information on the Wave, see our First Look article.
Sumajin has introduced its Gloss Clear Case for iPhone, a clear polycarbonate case offered in six different colors. The Gloss Case features a two-piece snap-together design, with a series of linear grooves on the back cover for added grip. It offers open access to the headphone port, sleep/wake button, ringer/silent switch, volume buttons, camera, screen, home button, and Dock Connector port; a screen protector is included. The Sumajin Gloss Clear Case for iPhone is available now in clear, black, blue, red, green, and pink, and sells for $21.
Argentine leather case maker Vaja has released Retro, a new series of stitched-stripe cases for iPods, iPhones, and the MacBook Air. The cases start at $39 and include:
Retro Slim Bag for iPhone ($39, shown): A sleeve-like case with an open top. An alternate version called Retro Slim Jacket for the MacBook Air sells for $180, and closes like an envelope to protect the computer.
Retro Dockable for iPhone ($75): A flip-style case with a bottom design that allows the iPhone to be docked in Apple’s included Dock without removing the case.
Top Retro with Hook for iPod nano 3G ($65): A flip-style case with a metal lobster claw hook at the top for attachment to a belt or clothing. Here, the front stripe is matched by colored and stitched side leather pieces, as well.
The Retro cases improve upon a version shown briefly last year. Models for the iPod classic and iPod touch have not yet been announced or released.
Proporta has introduced its Echo Mirrored Screen Protector for the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPod nano (with video). The Echo serves a double purpose, functioning as a screen protector for the device when it is in use, and as a silver reflective fashion accessory when the unit is turned off. An application card and screen cleaning cloth are included in the package, and the Echo can also be washed and reapplied. The Proporta Echo Mirrored Screen Protectors for iPhone, iPod touch, and iPod nano (with video) are available now; all three models sell for $10 each.
Griffin Technology has announced that its Reflect and Courier cases are now available for the iPhone. The Reflect for iPhone is a mirror-finish case that combines a polycarbonate front shell with a matte black rubberized case back for added grip. The Reflect allows access to all ports and controls, and includes a cleaning cloth and a static-peel screen protector. It is available now and sells for $25.
Griffin’s updated Courier case has been redesigned with a slimmer look and abrasion-resistance, and now provides protection for the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPod classic. Designed to attach onto a backpack or shoulder bag strap, Courier offers a hook-and-loop closure and carabiner clip, includes two detachable cases for iPhone or iPod touch and iPod classic or fifth-generation iPod, and features a hidden zippered pocket for money, keys, or ID. It is also available now, and sells for $35.
Thought Out has announced that it will be releasing its new KingNAJA holder for the iPhone and iPod touch in the next few weeks. The KingNAJA is a portable media device holder, which like the company’s previously released PED3 stand allows users to rotate the device between horizontal and vertical orientation as needed. The holder itself attaches to a 3-foot soft, flexible cable developed for secure positioning, which coils around the device holder for greater portability. The Thought Out KingNAJA portable holder for iPhone and iPod touch will be available in the next few weeks, and will sell for $40.
Mad Catz has announced that its AirDrives earphones for iPhone are now shipping. Announced in November, AirDrives feature an outer-ear design powered by InAir Technology, a new personal audio technology that lets users hear their surroundings as well as their music. In addition to this unique technology, AirDrives for iPhone will also include a microphone and one-touch music-to-phone capability. Darren Richardson, President and Chief Executive Officer of Mad Catz, said, “In the six months since its release, Apple’s iPhone is indisputably one of the most sought after consumer products worldwide and Mad Catz believes its innovative AirDrives headphones enhance the utility of this leading-edge platform. Combining voice capability with AirDrives’ existing technology allows users the seamless integration of music selections, conversations and their surroundings. We look forward to bringing this virtual communication experience to consumers throughout 2008.” Mad Catz AirDrives for iPhone are available now and sell for $100.
D&G Solutions has announced the LiveSpeakR, a new portable speaker system concept for the iPhone. The LiveSpeakR features two sets of shielded drivers that fold-up and store behind the iPhone during travel, and can also expand, contract, and rotate in order to accommodate both portrait and landscape modes. A built-in stand holds the speakers at different viewing angles, and the LiveSpeakR can run off 2 AAA batteries or an AC adapter. 23-year-old Erik Groset, inventor of the LiveSpeakR, said, “I’m very proud of the LiveSpeakR I believe it could be a perfect accessory for everyone’s iPhone. I invented it from the perspective of the end-user and everything they would want in a speaker-system.” D&G Solutions is currently seeking a partner to license the product for production; Groset said the LiveSpeakR could be available as soon as summer 2008.