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2014 iPad iPhone iPod Buyers' Guide from iLounge.com

News

Mophie debuts new Powerstation battery packs

Mophie has debuted its new Powerstation mini and Powerstation duo battery packs for the iPhone, iPad, iPod, and other portable devices. The Powerstation mini offers a 2500 mAh battery inside a small black and silver enclosure, as well as a single USB port for charging devices and a 1 Amp output. It is priced at $60. The Powerstation duo greatly resembles the mini, but sports a 6000 mAh battery, two USB ports for simultaneous charging of two devices, and 2.1 Amp output for fast charging of the iPad. It is priced at $100; both are available now.

Casetagram now offering custom iPad case

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Casetagram, a company that makes custom cases based on Instagram photos, is now offering a custom case for the iPad. The case features multiple photos on the back, laid out in one of two designs, as well as openings for all controls, ports, cameras, and speakers, and compatibility with Apple’s Smart Cover. Casetagram’s custom iPad case for the iPad 2 and third-generation iPad is available now in black, white, or clear, and sells for $55; custom cases for the iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S are also available for $35 each. [via Gizmodo]

Dropbox adds automatic Photo & Video Uploads

Dropbox has released an update to its universal iOS app adding support for automatically uploading photos from the iOS Camera Roll. Automatic Camera Uploading was originally introduced to the desktop and Android clients earlier this year and allows users to configure their Dropbox client to automatically upload new photos and videos from their iOS Camera Roll whenever the Dropbox app is opened. Automatically uploaded items are stored in a “Camera Uploads” folder and automatically renamed with a date and time filename. Users can choose to enable uploading of photos over a cellular data connection or restrict uploads to Wi-Fi; videos are only automatically uploaded over Wi-Fi regardless of this setting.

The new version also allows users to see all photos and videos they’ve uploaded to Dropbox in Gallery view and adds support for uploading files of any size and selecting multiple files to move or delete in a single operation. Dropbox is also continuing its offer of free bonus storage for uploading camera roll photos via the Dropbox apps; users who have not already earned this bonus storage via the desktop or Android apps can receive 500MB of space for each 500MB of photos they upload using the iOS app, up to a maximum of 3GB. Dropbox 1.5 is a universal app and is available from the App Store as a free download.

IK Multimedia releases AmpliTube Slash

IK Multimedia has released AmpliTube Slash, a special edition of its popular guitar effects app for iOS devices. AmpliTube is a mobile guitar and bass effects processor that allows users to turn their iOS device into a complete guitar rig and mobile recording studio. AmpliTube Slash is a signature version developed in cooperation with the famous Guns N’ Roses lead guitarist to model his entire rig of iconic pedals and amplifiers, including two classic rock amps—the Marshall JCM Slash Edition Silver Jubilee and the Marshall AFD100, both equipped with the Slash preferred 1960 Marshall speaker cabinet. Users can chain up to six pedal effects including Slash signature Delay, Gate, Octave/Fuzz, Chorus, Booster and Wah/Distortion in a fully configurable rig allowing the users to combine pedals in a 3 to 12 effects chain with one or two simultaneous amps and cabinets plus microphones. The app also includes 30 Slash tone presets, links to Slash songs and the ability to import and play backing tracks from the iOS music library or computer. Single track recording is included in the app with the ability o export recordings via e-mail, SoundCloud, FTP or iTunes File Sharing and users can upgrade to a four-track recorder via in-app purchase.

The main AmpliTube app has also been updated with the ability to add Slash gear a la carte via in-app purchase, and new features introduced in AmpliTube Slash including a new mixer and recorder section with loop points, visual metronome and tap tempo, digital audio and MIDI support, audio copy and paste and SoundCloud and fTP export for recordings. The AmpliTube series of apps are available from the App Store in several versions: the special edition AmpliTube Slash ($10) for the iPhone and iPod touch,
AmpliTube Slash for iPad ($10) are sold separately from the original AmpliTube, which is available in either full AmpliTube for iPad ($20) and AmpliTube ($20) for iPhone and iPod touch versions or a la carte editions that allow users to start with a free app and purchase the specific cabinets, amps and effects they want individually.

Incase unveils Shepard Fairey Portfolio for iPad

Incase has unveiled its new Shepard Fairey Portfolio for the third-generation iPad. Available in three of the noted artist’s designs—Elephant, Lotus Ornament and Yen Pattern—the Portfolio features a coated canvas exterior covered in original artwork, a zippered closure, three internal slip pockets, an internal divider to help protect the screen, snap-in iPad attachment, and the ability to covert into a workstation with both viewing and working angles. Incase’s Shepard Fairey Portfolio for iPad is available now and sells for $100.

Evernote Food adds Foursquare integration, new Camera features

Evernote has released an update to Evernote Food, its food-focused companion app for Evernote, adding integration with Foursquare along with several camera-related and other improvements. Evernote Food allows iPhone and iPod touch users to capture and relive their meal experiences with photos and notes that can be organized and synced via the Evernote service. Users can add additional titles, locations, tags and captions to record the experience and share the results as a sort of mini-food blog with friends via Twitter, Facebook and e-mail.

With version 1.2, users can now take advantage of Foursquare for more accurate venue suggestions and icons to illustrate cuisine and venue types. The update also provides a custom multi-shot camera interface for allowing users to take multiple photos of a meal without having to leave camera mode and users can also upload multiple images from the camera roll and tap-and-hold on an image to edit it prior to adding it to their meal. Additional enhancements include support for longer captions and meal notes, improvements to sharing of meals via e-mail, and better handling of meals with a large number of photos. Evernote Food requires iOS 5.0 or later and is available from the App Store as a free download.

Tout adds Facebook integration, new Friend Finder

Tout has released an update to its iPhone and iPod touch social media app adding the ability to sign up using Facebook and instantly share touts via Facebook, Twitter, and e-mail or text. Tout allows users to quickly record short, 15-second video clips that can then be shared on the service and posted in real-time to other social media services. A new Tout-torial has been added to provide users with an introduction to the app along with a new Friend Finder to help users discover new and interesting people to follow. Tout requires iOS 4.3 or later and is available from the App Store as a free download.

Bose SoundLink Air AirPlay speaker leaked by FCC

A listing for a new Bose speaker called the SoundLink Air has appeared on the FCC’s website. While many documents have been withheld from public view until October 31 at Bose’s request, the unit’s Test Report reveals a number of details. Most notably, the SoundLink Air offers 802.11b/g connectivity and AirPlay support, as well as an optional 16.8V lithium-ion battery pack, a 3.5mm auxiliary input, an infrared remote control, and side-mounted capacitive volume controls. It is still unclear what the unit looks like, and pricing information is likewise unavailable, but it appears likely that Bose will be making an official announcement sometime between now and the end of October. [via Engadget]

Apple, Time reach agreement on magazine sales

Apple and Time have reached an agreement that will see the latter make all of its magazines available via Apple’s Newsstand. In an interview with the New York Times, Time CEO Laura Lang and Apple senior vice president for Internet software and services Eddy Cue said the two companies had reached an agreement that would allow readers to subscriber to 20 Time magazines—including People, Sports Illustrated, InStyle, and Entertainment Weekly—through the Newsstand section of the App Store. Time had previously sold single issues of its magazines through the App Store; Lang, who took over as CEO in January, said that a deal with Apple was a top priority. “For a magazine or brand like People or Time, a tablet will become an increasingly important part of the experience,” Ms. Lang said. “Our goal is to offer content where our consumers want to read it.”

TIME Magazine adds Newsstand support

Time has released an update to its TIME Magazine app adding support for Newsstand on iOS 5 devices. TIME Magazine provides iPad users with access to the well known periodical with the ability to either purchase a monthly or yearly subscription or simply buy individual issues on-demand from directly within the app. Digital issues are released weekly and contain all of the news and features found in the corresponding print edition along with bonus international content, extra photos and video and live updates from Time.com. Version 6.1 adds iTunes based, automatically renewing subscriptions and moves the TIME Magazine app to the Newsstand section on iOS 5 where subscribers can now take advantage of automatic background downloading of the latest issues. TIME Magazine requires iOS 4.0 or later, with iOS 5 requires for Newsstand support and is available from the App Store as a free download. Individual issues are available via in-app purchase for $5 each or users can purchase in-app subscriptions for $3/month or $30/year.

Reeder for iPhone adds Fever sync

Silvio Rizzi has released a major update to Reeder for the iPhone and iPod touch featuring Fever syncing, significant improvements to Readability syncing and support for multiple Google Reader and Fever accounts. Completely rewritten, Reeder 3.0 introduces a different method for Google Reader authentication and now allows users to sync with a Fever RSS aggregator server instead of or in addition to Google Reader. Users can configure most settings on a per-account basis and settings are now accessible from directly within the app instead in the iOS Settings app.

Additional improvements include the ability to subscribe and unsubscribe to Google Reader feeds from within the app and adjust text size and line height options in the article viewer. QUOTE and Buffer have also been added as sharing services, along with a collection of new gestures for marking articles as read/unread or starred and accessing the in-app browser and readability views. Note that Facebook sharing has been temporarily removed in this update although it is expected to return in the future; users who require Facebook sharing are advised that they may want to skip this update. Reeder 3.0 now requires iOS 5.1 or later and is available from the App Store for $3.

AVG Family Safety offers a secure, family-friendly web browser

Internet and mobile security provider AVG has released AVG Family Safety, a new universal iOS web browser designed to help protect children from inappropriate websites and protect users in general from scams, fraud, phishing and other potentially malicious online content. AVG Family Safety operates as a replacement for the iOS Safari web browser, automatically filtering out known malicious websites using data provided by AVG’s LinkScanner technology. Parents can also configure a list of blocked web sites directly within the app or link the app to an AVG Family Safety account for enhanced filtering options and online activity monitoring; when combined with disabling the Safari browser using the iOS built-in Restrictions, AVG Family Safety allows users to provide a safer browsing environment for their children. AVG Family Safety is a universal app requiring iOS 4.3 or later and is available from the App Store as a free download.

Apple Store iOS app adds Express Checkout

Apple has updated the Apple Store iPhone app introducing a new Express Checkout feature. The Apple Store app allows iPhone users to lookup and purchase products from the online Apple Store or reserve products at any U.S. Apple Store for local pickup. Users can also use the app to request help and make Genius Bar and One to One reservations and users in the U.S. and the Netherlands can take advantage of EasyPay to make self-serve purchases in an Apple Retail Store using an iPhone 4/4S to scan the product barcode and complete the purchase transaction directly within the app. Apple Store 2.2 now allows users to save their account information for online purchase to expedite the checkout process and iPhone 4S users in the U.S. can now let Apple Store Specialists know when they’re approaching the Apple Store for a pickup so products can be ready by the time the user arrives. Apple Store requires iOS 5.0 or later and is available from the App Store as a free download.

Essential TPE intros Nanoblock dock for iPhone, iPod

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Essential TPE has introduced its new Nanoblock Universal Dock for the iPhone and iPod. Built in collaboration with Japanese toy company Kawada, the dock can both charge and sync an iPhone or iPod, and accepts Apple’s standard dock adapters; adapters for the iPhone 4/4S and fourth-generation iPod touch are included. In addition, the top surface of the dock is covered in nanoblock brick, allowing users to build their own custom attachments for the dock. Essential TPE’s Nanoblock Universal Dock is available now in four colors and sells for 3,980 yen, or roughly $50.

Photo of the Week: iPhone in Portugal

This week’s featured photo is from our iPhones Around the World gallery, and shows an iPhone overlooking the Douro River canyon in Miranda do Douro, Portugal. To share your photos and to be considered for our Photo of the Week, you simply need to submit your own photo to one of our galleries. So get out there, take some pictures featuring your favorite iPod, iPad, or iPhone and maybe your submission will be our next Photo of the Week!

Harman Kardon rolls out new headphones for iPhone, iPad

Harman Kardon has rolled out a new line of five headphones for the iPhone, iPad, iPod, and other portable devices. The line includes two in-ear models tailored specifically for the iPhone, which feature passive noise cancellation, multiple earphone sleeve options, and a three-button remote + mic. The NI features 9mm drivers, a rectangular black housing, and is priced at $100, while the AE model features a silver-toned aluminum casing for superior acoustic dampening, premium 9mm drivers, and foam sleeves included alongside the silicone sleeves that ship with the NI. It is priced at $150.

The other models in the lineup are either over- or on-ear units, offering lightweight, sand-blasted steel outer bands, leather inner bands, steel hinges, leather ear pads, enclosed steel frames, detachable ear pads, 40mm drivers, detachable cables, and fold-flat designs for easy portability inside included carrying cases. The on-ear CL is meant to reflect the iPhone’s design and features uniquely baffled drivers for improved bass response; it is priced at $199. As its name suggests, the over-ear BT model features Bluetooth for wireless audio streaming, and also offers built-in playback buttons on the side of one of the ear cups, 12 hours of battery life, an integrated microphone for receiving phone calls, and an included fabric cable that allows the BT to work even when the battery is exhausted. It is priced at $249.

Finally, the over-ear NC offers digital active noise-cancellation technology, slow-retention foam ear pads for a more comfortable fit and better seal, a 30-hour battery life, and the ability to continue operating after the battery has run out. The NC is priced at $299 and is expected to ship later this summer; all the other models are available now at Apple’s Retail and Online Stores.

Apple to axe Ping in next major iTunes release?

Apple will discontinue its Ping social network for music in the next major release of iTunes, according to a new report. Citing sources close to the company, AllThingsD reports that Ping will be gone in iTunes’ next major release, which is likely scheduled for this fall. The report claims that at that point, Apple’s social networking features will rely entirely on Twitter and Facebook. Apple CEO Tim Cook hinted at Ping’s demise in a recent interview, stating, “We tried Ping, and I think the customer voted and said ‘This isn’t something that I want to put a lot of energy into’”. Ping launched in September 2010.

Seidio ships Desktop Charging Cradle for iPhone 4/4S

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Seidio has announced that it is now shipping its new Desktop Charging Cradle for the iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S. The black plastic dock features a soft touch coating, a power LED on the rear of the cradle, included removable plates to accomodate both bare iPhones and devices encased in the company’s Surface, Active, or Active X cases, and a micro USB cable for charging. Seidio’s Desktop Charging Cradle for the iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S is available now and sells for $30, or in a kit with an included travel charger for $40.

Apple updates AirPort Utility, adds IPv6 support

Apple has released an update to its AirPort Utility for iOS devices adding support for the new Apple AirPort Express (Mid 2012) released yesterday. AirPort Utility allows users to manage Airport Express, Airport Extreme and Time Capsule devices from an iPad, iPhone or iPod touch, presented as a graphical overview of the user’s Wi-Fi network and devices. Users can display information about connected Wi-Fi devices, view and change base station and network settings, restart devices and update firmware and passwords. With the latest update users can now configure IPv6 settings on AirPort base stations as well. AirPort Utility requires iOS 5 and is available from the App Store as a free download.

Amazon releases Cloud Player for iOS

Amazon has released an iOS app for Cloud Player, its cloud-based music service. The new Amazon Cloud Player for iPhone and iPod touch allows users to stream or download music stored in Cloud Player to their device; users can also listen to music already stored on the device and manage and create their own custom playlists. The app provides users with full access to their Cloud Player music library as well as seamless integration with existing playlists that are currently on their device. The app also provides support for listening to music in the background and is compatible with iOS lock screen controls and Bluetooth streaming. The Amazon Cloud Player service provides users with 5GB of free storage to upload their digital music library with unlimited MP3/AAC music file storage available for those who purchase an additional storage plan. Amazon Cloud Player requires iOS 4.3 or later and is available from the U.S. App Store as a free download.

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