Mercedes-Benz Financial has announced that the results of its limited iPad pilot program were so “overwhelmingly positive” that the company is expanding the program to all 355 dealerships in the U.S. During the pilot phase, select dealerships in the U.S. were letting potential customers fill out paperwork on the spot using iPads, instead of forcing them into a dealership office to complete the sale, with the hopes of preserving more sales lost at the last minute. “We were surprised,” Andreas Hinrichs, vice president of marketing for Mercedes-Benz Financial, said in an interview with Macworld. “The feedback was so positive we said, we need to push this out to all the dealers and take the financing process to a new level.” The company will also begin use of the 3G-enabled iPads in its leasing process, allowing customers returning vehicles to watch the post-lease inspection and sign the completed forms using their finger.
In addition, Mercedes is showing off a prototype iPad docking station at the Paris Motor Show. Similar to the one shown at the show by rival manufacturer BMW, the Mercedes mount sits horizontally behind the front seat headrest and allows back seat passengers full use of the iPad while it charges. No pricing or availability information has yet been announced.
- October 4, 2010
- iPad Accessories
ColorWare, known for its custom coloring services, has introduced the Grip case for iPad, its first original product. Made from aircraft-grade aluminum, the Grip is a two-piece case featuring an integrated handle, open access to all ports, controls, and the screen, the ability to have two distinct custom colors applied to the handle and frame, and included installation tools. ColorWare’s Grip case for the iPad is available now in a wide range of possible color combinations and sells for $300.
After numerous other companies have debuted similar case designs, Moleskine has finally entered the iPad and iPhone case market with their Tablet Cover and Smartphone Cover. Unlike previous lookalike products, both the Tablet and Smartphone Covers feature blank notebook pages on their interiors opposite the devices, as well as light suede inner lining, a strong elastic closure band, and a smooth black cover. Moleskine’s new Tablet Cover and Smartphone Cover for the iPad, iPhone 4, and iPhone 3G/3GS have yet to receive pricing or a release date.
Monster has introduced five new products for its Beats by Dr. Dre audio line, including the new Beatbox iPod speaker. The Beatbox is a black, trapezoidal system featuring a top-mounted iPod and iPhone dock, digital amplification, two 5.25-inch long throw bass drivers, dual 2-inch concave high frequency drivers, and ABS housing. It will sell for $400. Also new are the iBeats by Dr. Dre, in-ear headphones engineered to deliver high-resolution sound from the iPod, iPhone, iPad, and other portable audio devices. The iBeats feature an in-line ControlTalk box with remote and mic, a noise-isolating in-ear design, a single driver in each earbud, and three included custom-fit eartip sizes for a secure fit. Monster’s iBeats by Dr. Dre are priced at $120.
The rest of Monster’s new Beats lineup includes the LeBron James-endorsed Powerbeats In-ear Headphones, featuring dual drivers and a sports-friendly design for $170, the purple, Justin Bieber-endorsed JustBeats, which sell for $200 for an on-ear version or $120 for the in-ear version, and the new flagship Beats Pro over-the-ear headphones, featuring aluminum construction, flip-up ear cups, dual input/output cable ports, and all-metal hinges for $450. Monster’s new line of Beats by Dr. Dre audio products will be available in the coming weeks. [via Engadget]
- September 29, 2010
- iPad Accessories
Pendle Products has outed its new iPad Stand. The silver-covered stand can hold the iPad in either an inclined or reclined position, and offers full dock connector access in either portrait or landscape orientation, rubber and plastic supports to alleviate scratches, and laser cut steel. Pendle Products’ iPad Stand is available now and sells for £30, or roughly $47.
- September 29, 2010
- iPad Accessories
Booq has introduced its new Boa Folio case for the iPad, iPhone and iPod touch. The Boa Folio is a carrying case for iPad made from Nappa leather or Booq’s Twylon ballistic fabric, and features a dedicated iPhone/iPod touch pocket on the front flap, a closing strap to hold the case closed when travelling, a molded bumper to protect and securely hold the iPad inside, the ability to fold flat, at a low angle for typing, or at a nearly vertical angle for video viewing, and a large interior document pocket. The Booq Boa Folio for iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch is available now in five colors and sells for $90 for the leather versions or $50 for Twylon models.
H2O has released its new Surge 2G Waterproof Sport Headphones. The new Surge 2G headphones are 100% sweatproof and waterproof, and features a new design for improved sound, an aerodynamic profile that provides an improved fit and reduces drag, 8mm neodymium drivers, and five included sets of Elastomer earplugs to ensure a waterproof seal and comfortable fit. H2O Audio’s new Surge 2G Waterproof Sport Headphones are available now and sell for $50.
Sennheiser has unveiled six new headsets featuring Apple-compatible in-line remotes and mics. The IE 8i ($600) is an in-ear headphone offering clear, balanced sound, while the MM 70i ($130) are also in-ear headphones, but are designed to offer more pronounced bass. The PX 100-IIi ($120) and PX 200-IIi ($140) on-the-ear headsets are similar, with the open 100-IIi offering more balanced sound than the closed, bass-heavy 200-IIi; the same differences are present in the over-the-ear HD 238i ($170) and HD 218i ($100) models, respectively. Sennheiser’s new line of Apple-compatible headsets with remote and mic are available now.
Scosche is now shipping its MotorMouth II plug and play Bluetooth handsfree car kit and streaming audio receiver. Recipient of an iLounge 2010 CES iPod + iPhone Best of Show award, the MotorMouth II is a 3.5mm connecting accessory and microphone that allows for hands-free phone calls and also accepts streaming audio via Bluetooth A2DP. Features include a built-in microphone, multifunction button for voice dialing, DSP echo cancellation, and an included switching audio splitter, AUX relocation cable, USB charging cable, and car charger. The Scosche MotorMouth II Bluetooth handsfree car kit is available now and sells for $80.
SpeakerCraft has rolled out its new FloBox and FloBox Mini speakers for the iPad, iPhone, and iPod. Both the FloBox and FloBox Mini feature integrated docks compatible with the iPad, iPhone, and iPod, an FM tuner, AirPlay and DLNA compatibility, and a mini USB port for syncing functionality. The FloBox features two 3.5-inch mid-woofers, two 3/4-inch tweeters, and a 5.25-inch subwoofer, while the FloBox Mini features two three-inch woofers and two 3/4-inch tweeters. No pricing or release date has been announced for the FloBox or FloBox Mini. In addition, SpeakerCraft has announced its Vital 250 amplifier, which also features an iPad, iPhone, and iPod dock, AirPlay compatibility, 50 watt output, auxiliary inputs, a dedicated subwoofer output, a pre-out, a line-out, and a composite video output. The Vital 250 will be available in the fourth quarter and will sell for $699. [via Engadget]
Libratone has introduced its new Beat wireless speaker for the iPad, iPhone, and iPod. The Beat features a five-inch subwoofer, two three-inch midrange, and two one-inch ribbon-based tweeters, built-in digital signal processing, 50 watts of power for the subwoofers and 2x25W for the tweeters and midrange drivers, two included wireless transmitters—a 30-pin transmitter for the iPad, iPhone, and iPod, and a USB transmitter for the Mac or PC, with the ability to switch between the two with a single button press—a cashmere wool and chrome body, and an auxiliary input for connecting other audio sources. The Libratone Beat will be available in January 2011 and is priced at $595.
Cervantes Mobile has unveiled its new Jorno keyboard for the iPad, iPhone, iPod touch, and other portable devices. The Jorno is a foldable Bluetooth keyboard, featuring a rechargeable lithium ion battery good for up to one month of use, a mini-USB port for charging, LED power and low battery indicators, a compact, detachable device cradle with stowable kickstand for tablet support, Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR capability, and a footprint of 3.5” x 3.5” x 0.9” when folded. Cervantes’ Jorno Bluetooth keyboard for portable devices is available for pre-order for $79, and is expected to ship in early 2011 for $99.
- September 21, 2010
- iPad Accessories
Headcase has rolled out its new Etch A Sketch case for the Apple iPad. Made of impact-resistant plastic, the case looks much like the classic children’s drawing toy, and features felt interior lining, retractable kick stands, rubber feet for laying the device flat, and open access to all ports and controls. Headcase’s official Etch A Sketch iPad Case is available now and sells for $39.
At the 2010 Paris Motor Show, luxury auto maker BMW announced several new enhancements and accessories for the iPad, iPhone, and iPod. Perhaps most notable among the new offerings is the BMW holder for the Apple iPad, an accessory that attaches to the company’s new Travel & Comfort System, and offers secure back-seat mounting for the tablet, the ability to be used in vertical or horizontal orientation, and angle adjustment. Also new is the BMW Station for the Apple iPhone, another cradle-like accessory designed for BMW models lacking the company’s iDrive control system. It offers optimal mounting of an iPhone, allows for charging without visible cable connections, includes a hands-free kit with directional microphone and radio mute function, and will interface with an upcoming BMW Link app for iDrive-like functionality. The company is also planning to offer new Bluetooth technology created for iOS 4 that allows the iPhone 4 to be better integrated, and complete support for the new iPod Out feature of iOS 4 for improved navigation and control of connected devices. BMW’s new accessories and features for the iPad, iPhone, and iPod are expected to be available in new BMW automobiles beginning in Spring 2011.
- September 16, 2010
- iPad Accessories
Scosche Industries has outed its new foldIO case for the Apple iPad. The foldIO is a folio-style case featuring a leather-textured exterior surface, suede interior lining, open access to all ports and controls, a low-profile design, and interior ribs to allow the case to function as a three position landscape stand. Scosche’s new foldIO case for the Apple iPad is available now and sells for $50.
Shure has rolled out its new SE315 Sound Isolating Earphone. The SE315 features a single “High-Definition” MicroDriver for full-range sound, a tuned bass port for improved low-end performance, a detachable cable with wireform fit, an included fit kit with three pairs of disposable black foam sleeves, three pairs of soft flex sleeves, one pair of yellow foam sleeves, and one pair of triple flange sleeves, an included carrying case, and either a clear or black housing. Shure’s SE315 Sound Isolating Earphone is available now and sells for $200.
Altec Lansing has debuted its Octiv Duo speaker system for the iPod and iPhone as well as new additions to its line of Muzx earphones. The wedge-shaped Octiv Duo features two top-mounted Docks for charging and playing two devices at once, a built-in USB port for charging a third device, an auxiliary input, a full-featured remote, and compatibility with the company’s Music Mix app for shuffling songs between the two docked devices and the Alarm Rock app for adding alarm clock functionality. The Altec Lansing Octiv Duo will be available in October and is priced at $100.
Altec’s new Muzx earphone lineup includes three models—Muzx Ultra, Muzx Extra, and Muzx Core. Muzx Ultra features an in-ear design with a single balanced armature in each bud, up to 26 dB of passive noise isolation, an in-line remote and mic, a 46-inch cable, a gold-plated 3.5mm jack, and an included eight-piece fitting kit and carrying case. The Muzx Core features 10mm Neodymium drivers and an in-line remote, while the Muzx Extra offers a more bass-heavy sound signature and a full-featured in-line remote and mic. Altec Lansing’s new Muzx Ultra and Muzx Extra earphones will be available in October and will sell for $100 and $50, respectively, while the Muzx Core earphones are available now and sell for $30.
- September 14, 2010
- iPad Accessories
Treegloo has rolled out its new customizable case for the Apple iPad. The case features a folio-style design, with a user-selectable frame finish and interior lining, open access to all ports and controls, a faux leather cover, and an elastic strap closure. Treegloo’s customizable case for the Apple iPad is available now and sells for $35.
Kensington has debuted its new PowerBack Battery Case, Wall Pack Duo Charger, and PowerBolt Duo Car Charger for the Apple iPad. The PowerBack Battery Case is a play-though case featuring an integrated 4400mAh battery good for up to five extra hours of use, a Micro USB sync/charge port, an integrated LED battery level indicator, built-in speaker deflectors, a soft touch finish, and a three-position steel kickstand. It is priced at $130. The Wall Pack Duo Charger is a home wall charger offering dual USB ports, 2.1 Amp compatibility for fast iPad charging, the ability to charge two devices simultaneously, and an included detachable USB-to-30-pin sync/charge cable. It sells for $30, as does the PowerBolt Duo Car Charger, which features dual USB ports, a 2.1 Amp port for fast iPad charging, a 1 Amp USB port for fast iPhone charging, an included detachable USB-to-30-pin sync/charge cable, and an LED power indicator. All of Kensington’s new accessories for the iPad are now available for pre-order; no release dates have been announced.
PLX Devices has introduced its new XWave accessory for the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. Based on the same technology used in Mattel’s MindFlex and Uncle Milton’s The Force Trainer, the headphone port-connecting XWave uses a small sensor placed on the user’s forehead to monitor brain activity via the attached iOS device, allowing the user to detect attention or relaxation (meditation) levels and control games using their mind. In addition to interfacing with a small number of pre-announced apps, PLX is offering an SDK for iPhone developers to allow them to interface with the XWave. PLX Devices’ XWave for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch is available for pre-order now and will ship in October for $100.