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Apple releases iPad 2 Dock

Following today’s iPad 2 announcement, Apple has unveiled a new iPad 2 Dock. Priced at $29, the Apple iPad 2 Dock includes a 30-pin Dock Connector port for charging and syncing the iPad as well as connecting other accessories such as the Apple Digital AV Adapter cable and iPad Camera Connection Kit. The Dock also provides a 3.5mm audio line-out port for connecting to powered speakers. The new Dock uses a slightly different design from the original iPad Dock with a small lip at the front. The package will include the Dock only, requiring users to use the cables included with the iPad 2 or purchase additional cables separately.

Apple announces iPad HDMI cable, Smart Covers for iPad 2 (Updated)

Apple today also announced two new accessories that will be available for the iPad 2. A new $39 HDMI video output cable will allow iPad users to connect their devices to an HDTV, providing not only support for displaying HD video content but also mirroring the iPad screen onto a TV, allowing any iPad application to be viewed on the larger screen, including support for both landscape and portrait orientation with no setup or configuration required.

A new Smart Covers accessory was also unveiled for the iPad 2, designed in tandem with the new model. The Smart Cover attaches to the glass screen using magnets built into the iPad 2 which can also detect when the cover is closed. The iPad 2 will be able to automatically sleep when closed, and wake when opened, and magnets will grab and auto-align the cover for easy attachment and removal. The cover also folds into a triangle to be used as a typing stand or video stand and includes a microfiber lining to clean the screen. The cover will be sold in five colours in either polyurethane or leather for $39 and $69 for each version, respectively.

Update: The new HDMI adapter, dubbed the “Apple Digital AV Adapter” has appeared on the Apple Store with a ship date of “Coming Soon.” The cable includes an HDMI port and a 30-pin Dock Connector port for charging the iPad while connected to a TV. The cable is compatible with the iPad, iPhone 4, fourth-generation iPod touch and iPad 2. The product page notes that display mirroring will only be available on the IPad 2.

MountMe intros Freedom mount for iPad

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MountMe has introduced its new Freedom mounting solution for the iPad. The Freedom is a combination case and mounting solution offering full access to all ports and controls, a quick release rear bracket that doubles as a kickstand for video viewing and typing while offering panning and tilting capabilities, and the option to mount the bracket using screws, suction cups, or a mounting strap good for in-car use. MountMe’s Freedom mounting solution for iPad is available in a variety of colors and sells for $50; a model compatible with the second-generation iPad is listed as “coming soon.”

PadPivot, Waldok accessories reach Kickstarter goals

Two new accessories, the PadPivot and Waldok, have reached their KickStarter funding goals and are set to become commercial products in the coming days. The PadPivot is a tablet stand for the iPad and other tablet devices, offering a curved base for resting on both curved and flat surfaces, a central, hinge-mounted sticky pad for setting the tablet at a desired angle, and a slot in the front which works to hold the tablet with the sticky pad providing extra support. It is available for pre-order via a $25 pledge. The Waldok is a plug-in speaker/charger for the iPod and iPhone. The device was originally designed primarily for the sixth-generation iPod nano, but has since been modified for compatibility with most docking iPods and iPhones. Features include a 40mm driver, a top-mounted dock, and retractable, flip-out prongs that allow the Waldock to attach directly to a power outlet. The developers are asking for a $59 pledge to secure one of the first Waldok units; neither product has yet received a firm release date.

NomadBrush debuts conductive paint brush for iPad

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NomadBrush has debuted its new Nomad Brush paint brush for use with the iPad and other capacitive touch screen devices. Handcrafted using conductive materials, the Nomad features real bristles, a 7.5” by 0.25” black body and a weight of 0.2 ounces; other sizes and colors will be available “soon.” Notably, the Nomad Brush is not for use with standard paints or inks, and some bristles will come out during normal use without affecting the performance of the brush. The Nomad Brush for iPad and other capacitive touch screen devices is available now and sells for $24.

Scosche ships goBat II portable battery pack

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Scosche has announced that it is now shipping its goBat II portable battery pack for the iPod, iPhone, iPad, and other portable devices. Sporting an internal 5,000mAh lithium ion battery, the goBat II features two USB ports—one with a 2.1 Amp output for charging devices such as the iPad, and one with a 1 Amp output for charging smaller devices such as the iPod and iPhone—which can be used for simultaneous charging of two devices. Other features include an LED battery level indicator and a microUSB port and wall charger for recharging the internal battery. Scosche’s goBat II portable battery pack is available now and sells for $90.

Spruce seeks funding for Wedge iPad stand

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Spruce Design Studio is seeking funding on Kickstarter for its new Wedge iPad stand. Made from anodized silver aluminum, the Wedge is a minimalist stand, with a slot for holding the iPad in either vertical or horizontal orientation, multiple open cavities to reduce weight, and a non-skid case that helps hold the stand in place while protecting furniture from scratches. Interested customers can pledge as little as $20 as a pre-order for the Wedge; higher contributions include multiple stands and/or a limited-edition, laser-etched Kickstarter version.

TouCoul rolls out CoulVue mount for iPad

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TouCoul has rolled out its new CoulVue headrest mounting system for the iPad. The CoulVue attaches to any standard car headrest with dual steel rods, using a reinforced locking system to hold the unit securely in place. Features include a flexible arm mount, 360 degree twist/tilt functionality, open access to all ports and controls, and a secure iPad mounting bracket that is designed to be a perfect fit for unencased first-generation iPads. TouCoul’s CoulVue headrest mounting system for iPad is available for pre-order now and sells for $80.

AT&T cuts prices on iPad cases by 50%

AT&T is offering a 50 percent discount on its selection of accessories for the first-generation iPad amidst reports of the next-generation model’s impending announcement. AT&T’s assortment of cases includes offerings from AGF, iFrogz, Incipio, Griffin, OtterBox, and Speck. As noted by Boy Genius Report, AT&T traditionally doesn’t offer such discounts unless a replacement is imminent; recent reports have suggested that Apple’s second-generation iPad is in production and is expected to launch in the “next couple of months.”

OtterBox debuts Utility Series Latch for iPad

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OtterBox has debuted its new Utility Series Latch accessory for the iPad. The Latch is a fabric accessory that works with both encased and bare iPads, with straps that wrap around the device’s corners for a secure hold, an adjustable elastic strap for attaching to the user’s hand, leg, or car seat headrest, an included lanyard, an S-biner utility clip for attaching to a belt or bag, an accessory storage bag that doubles as a stand, and an included lightweight screen cover. OtterBox’s Utility Series Latch for iPad is available now and sells for $50.

Assero intros Defender, Protector packs for iPad

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Assero Industries has introduced its new Defender and Protector packs for the iPad. The Defender is a unique carrying solution for iPad, offering the ability to be carried as a backpack, shoulder bag, briefcase, or frontpack. Features include a neoprene iPad sleeve with a brushed tricot fabric screen protector, microfiber interior flexible pockets, a dedicated iPod/iPhone pocket with headphone cord access, a large back pocket, a carrying handle, mesh, breathable fabric on the body side of the bag, and adjustable straps in the dedicated iPad area that allow the Defender to serve as a hands-free holder when worn in a forward-facing configuration. The Protector uses a similar, but more limited design that can be work as a backpack or frontpack, and offers the same hands-free iPad holder functionality as the Defender. Other features include memory foam cushioning, breathable mesh fabric facing the body, a neoprene iPad sleeve with Velcro for easy adjustment, and a streamlined pocket with space for minimal accessories such as chargers and cables. Assero’s Defender and Protector packs for the iPad are available now and sell for $130 and $90, respectively.

Rain Design debuts iRest Lap Stand for iPad

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Rain Design has debuted its new iRest Lap Stand for the iPad. Designed specifically for use on the user’s lap, the iRest is made from aluminum, and features a torque hinge that allows for angle adjustment up to 60 degrees, the ability to fold flat for travel, foam cushions for comfort, the ability to work as a desktop stand, cutouts for the Dock Connector and speaker, the ability to be used with encased iPads, and padding for the iPad to prevent scratches. Rain Design’s iRest Lap Stand for iPad is available now and sells for $50.

iSkin Q.West collection now available

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Recipient of a 2011 CES iLounge Best of Show award, iSkin’s new Q.West collection is now available online. Ranging in price from $50 for an iPad sleeve or camera pouch to $260 for the Jimmy travel bag, the collection includes 16 unique carriers in a wide variety of styles. Of particular interest to iLounge’s editors at CES was the Sling ($125), a slim, water-resistant bag with an over-the-shoulder design, a storage compartment large enough to hold an iPad or 11-inch MacBook Air, a zippered compartment for cords, compact cameras, or other accessories, and a dedicated phone or media player pocket on the front. For more information on select styles and pricing, see iSkin’s dedicated Q.West mini-site.

Franky Wish launches with new iPad sleeve

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New company Franky Wish has launched, with a new iPad sleeve among its first products. Made from water-resistant synthetic leather, the company’s iPad sleeve features “Pro Extreme Technology,” a protective material with a unique microcellular structure that excels at absorbing the forces of an impact, a smooth interior, a protective interior border, and YKK zippers. Available in “Electric Wish” and “Urban Enigma” exterior designs, the new Franky Wish iPad sleeves are available now and sell for €47, or roughly $65; the company is expected to offer iPhone cases in the near future.

DryCase debuts DryCase Tablet for iPad

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DryCase has debuted its new DryCase Tablet case for the iPad and other tablet devices. The DryCase Tablet is a vacuum-sealed, fully-enclosed waterproof case made from flexible clear material that allows for full use of the iPad while in the case, and also features a three-way headphone jack, a hold handle, and an included hand pump used to create the air tight seal. The new DryCase Tablet for iPad is available now and sells for $60.

Desk Pets debuts TankBot with iOS device control

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Desk Pets has debuted its new TankBot, an interactive toy that allows users to control it via an iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch. The remote control toy features three modes for maze navigation, free roaming, or iOS control, built-in IR sensors for gesture control, a retractable USB charger built into the body, and “heartbeat eye” lights on the front to indicate when the robot is idle. In addition, each unit includes a dongle that works with an app to allow for accelerometer control of the toy on an iOS device. Desk Pets’ TankBot will be available in four colors and is expected to ship in June for “under $20.”

Shure outs new earphone, headphones at NAMM 2011

Shure has introduced a new pair of earphones and two new pairs of headphones at the 2011 NAMM Show in Anaheim, CA. The SE215 Sound Isolating Earphone features a single Dynamic MicroDriver, a detachable cable, and includes three pairs of black sleeves, three pairs of soft flex sleeves, and a carrying case. It will be available in clear or translucent black and is expected to sell for around $100. The SRH550DJ Professional DJ Headphones feature 50mm drivers for extended bass, a super-aural design for better isolation, an adjustable, collapsible headband, an included 6.3mm adapter and an included carrying bag. Finally, the SRH940 Professional Reference Headphones promise accurate frequency response, a collapsible, lightweight design, a padded headband, and include a 6.3mm adapter, two detachable cables—straight and coiled—a replacement set of velour ear pads, and a zippered hard carrying case. Shure’s SRH550DJ and SRH940 headphones are expected to sell for $100 and $300, respectively; all three new models will be available this Spring. [via Engadget]

Akai debuts SynthStation49 keyboard with iPad dock

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Akai has debuted its new SynthStation49 keyboard with built-in iPad dock. Designed specifically for use with the iPad, the SynthStation49 features a 49 full-size velocity-sensitive keys, pitch and modulation wheels, an adjustable-angle charging iPad dock, a USB port for connecting to a Mac or PC, the ability to function as a traditional MIDI controller, professional 0.25-inch outputs, nine backlit MPC-style drum pads, and full transport buttons. In addition, it works with the company’s SynthStation software for iOS, offering direct in-app MIDI recording, and is also iOS CoreMIDI compatible, allowing it to be used with a wide variety of other iOS music apps. Pricing and Availability have yet to be announced. [via MusicRadar]

CES launch round-up: Monster, Scosche, Speakal, and more

A number of companies have launched new products at the 2011 International CES. While we’ve covered the cream of the crop in our 2011 Best of Show and subsequent articles, here’s a brief overview of some other major product introductions from the show.

Monster: Monster introduced a number of new automotive accessories for the iPod, iPhone, and iPad at the show, including the iMotion CarPlay Direct Connect. The iMotion CarPlay Direct Connect functions as a traditional car charger and audio-out accessory but adds the ability to control basic music playback functions with gesture controls. It features a charger bulb-mounted sensor to track movement, and also features a black and silver body, red, black, and chrome cords similar to those found on the company’s Beats by Dr. Dre headphones, and a built-in hinge for adjusting the direction of the sensor. Monster’s iMotion CarPlay Direct Connect will sell for $120; other new items include the iCable USB to Dock Connector Cable ($25), the iCarPlay Direct Connect AI 900 ($60), the iCarPlay Direct Connect AI 2000 ($70), the PowerPlug Dual USB 700 Car Charger ($40), the PowerPlug USB 600 Car Charger ($30), the iCar Dual USB 700 Car Charger ($45), the iCar USB 600 Car Charger ($40), and the AirTalk Bluetooth Handsfree Car Kit ($80). 

Bluetrek at CES: Aurele cases, Bluetooth accessories

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Bluetrek is showing a number of new items at its booth inside the iLounge Pavilion at the 2011 International CES. Among them is the new LostDog series of cases inspired by the work of French artist Aurele. The snap-style cases for the iPhone 4 feature glossy rear surfaces covered in artwork, open access to all ports and controls—including the micro SIM slot—and frosted side coverings; a screen protector is also included. Notably, each article in the lineup is made from natural, recycled, or recyclable materials, and most of the cases carry a unique ID that can be used to identify a device should it be lost. Bluetrek’s LostDog cases for the iPhone 4 are available now and sell for $27; the folio-style iPad cases sell for $60 and $90.

Also being shown at the booth but yet to receive a price or release date are the company’s new Speaky Bluetooth handsfree car kit and the Carbon Bluetooth headset. The Speaky is a cartoon character-like car kit that is designed to hang from a car’s rearview mirror, with volume controls on its arms and a central control button on its torso, audible voice alerts, a 3.5mm input for non-Bluetooth use, and a unique auto-off sensor system that shuts the Speaky down after five minutes of no motion. The Carbon is a very small Bluetooth headset, featuring a slim carbon fiber microphone stem, a 4.5 hour battery built into the stem, and an iPhone-like power button.

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