Fusion of Ideas has unveiled its new StealthArmor protective film for the Apple iPad. Available in a variety of finishes, including clear, brushed aluminum, carbon fiber, matte black, and wood grain, StealthArmor was originally developed for automotive applications and uses a heat-bonding technology to form itself to the iPad’s unique shape. Notably, the company previously told iLounge that installation involves applying “liberal heat” from a hair dryer to the film in order to make it pliable and ensure a proper fit. Fusion of Ideas’ StealthArmor film for iPad will be available on April 3rd; pricing has yet to be announced.
Brenthaven has introduced its new line of cases for the Apple iPad. Featuring an external shell made from 100% recycled Billboard material, the eco-friendly Bill-Fold Sleeve for iPad also offers a folding design for added corner protection, and a white-on-black color scheme. It will ship April 3 and is available for pre-order for $35. The Ecco-prene Sleeve is also an eco-friendly case option, made with a neoprene-like material that is PVC-free and 100% recyclable, and featuring a faux-fur lined interior for protection against scratches, 7mm-thick walls, and a zippered closure. It will ship at the end of May and is available for pre-order for $25.
The Mini Eclipse case features a briefcase design, a rugged ballistic nylon shell, a retractable handle, a zippered closure, and a front pocket designed to carry the iPad’s charger. It is available now and sells for $20. Finally, the Switch Satchel is a messenger-style vertical case featuring a reversible front flap, zippered main compartment, a front organizer panel for accessories, and a backslip pocket. It too is available now in “Amsterdam” and “Gray Gi Jo” and sells for $40.
TwelveSouth has provided iLounge with an exclusive sneak peek at its upcoming BookArc stand for iPad. Drawing on the design of its current BookArc for Apple’s MacBooks, the BookArc for iPad will be made out of aluminum and feature a slit lined with a silicone pad to hold the iPad in place without scratching the screen, sides, or rear surface. In addition, the design incorporates a small indention to allow for access to the Home button while the iPad is in the stand. TwelveSouth’s BookArc for iPad is coming soon; exact release and pricing information has yet to be announced.
Apple has begun to accept pre-orders for the iPad Camera Connection Kit. The $29 accessory kit includes two separate 30-pin connectors, one with an SD card slot, and the other with a USB port that can be used to attach most digital cameras. According to Apple, once the connection is made with either the SD card or camera, the iPad “automatically opens the Photos app, which lets you choose which pictures to import, then organizes the selected photos into albums. When you sync iPad to your PC or Mac, the photos on your iPad are added to your computer’s photo library.” The iPad will support most standard photo formats, including JPEG and RAW; the iPad Camera Connection Kit will ship in late April. For more on the iPad Camera Connection Kit, see our First Look article.
CaseCrown has introduced its new lineup of cases for the Apple iPad. The Air Cell Padded Carrying Case is a briefcase-style bag offering over 200 “air cells” designed to offer shock protection, a zippered closure, adjustable shoulder straps, and a pink, blue, or black fabric edge. It sells for $35. Both the Neoprene Case and Neoprene Pocket Case feature a neoprene exterior and double memory foam inner lining for shock protection; the latter adds an external pocket for cables, chargers, and other items. Available in pink, black, blue, or red, they sell for $20 and $25, respectively.
CaseCrown’s iPad Suede Slip features a faux suede exterior, a padded, zippered main compartment, a zippered exterior pocket for small accessories, and a detachable and adjustable shoulder strap. It comes in one of five colors and sells for $20. Available on Amazon, the Double Memory Foam Pouch Case with Front Pocket features a checkered outer design, zippered main compartment and exterior pocket, shock absorbing memory foam inner lining, and internal supporting bands for structural integrity. It sells for $26. Finally, the Vertical Multi Pocket Messenger Bag, also available from Amazon, offers a separate, Velcro-closure padded compartment for the iPad, front, back, side, and flap pockets for other accessories, a vertical design, and an adjustable shoulder strap. It sells for $34; all of CaseCrown’s new iPad accessories are available now.
Kensington has taken the wraps off its new line of accessories for the iPad. The PowerBolt Micro Car Charger features a low-profile charging stem, a USB port with 2.1 Amps for fast charging of the iPad, an included, detachable USB-to-Dock Connector cable, and an LED power indicator. It will be available April 3 and will sell for $25. The Reversible Sleeve for iPad is a simple sleeve-style case made from neoprene with a two-color reversible design and a slim profile; it is available now and sells for $10. Finally, the Sling Bag for iPad features an over-the-shoulder, messenger bag-style design offering a zippered exterior pocket with a mobile phone compartment, a soft, padded interior safety compartment for the iPad, and an interior accessory pocket for chargers, wallet, keys, and other small items. It will sell for $30 and is expected to be available April 30.
Case-mate has announced seven new accessories for the Apple iPad. The company will offer its I Make My Case service for the iPad, letting users create their own customized hard case, as well as the Gelli Case, a flexible thermoplastic case featuring a unique pattern, open access to all ports and controls, and an included screen protection kit. The latter will sell for $40, while pricing for the I Make My Case service has yet to be announced. The iPad Hybrid Tough case features an inner layer of silicone for impact protection, wrapped in a rugged ABS plastic shell for increased structural integrity, and also offers access to all ports and controls. It will sell for $50, as will the Felt Folio, a horizontally-opening flip-style case made of felt with leather accents, offering interior storage pockets and a magnetic strap closure. The Leather Commuter (listed online as The Walkabout) is a top-opening sleeve-style case made from premium tan leather and featuring a magnetic closure for $80, while the Nylon Folio (listed online as The Express) is a black, splash-resistant ballistic nylon flip-style case with a horizontally-opening design and a magnetic closure. It will sell for $35. Finally, the Stand is an iPad stand that provides support in both landscape and portrait modes and features a collapsible design that snaps together for easy storage when not in use; pricing for the Stand has yet to be announced. All of case-mate’s new accessories for the iPad are expected to be available in Q2 2010.
iWrap has introduced its new Full Body Wrap for iPad. The Full Body Wrap is a set of transparent protective film that covers both the front and rear of the iPad, allows for full access to all ports and controls, and includes an installation kit with application solution and a squeegee. iWrap’s Full Body Wrap for iPad is now available for pre-order and sells for $30.
Wrapsol has introduced its new line of Wrapsol ultra shock-protection film. Unlike ordinary film solutions, Wrapsol ultra features a shock absorption property that helps protect against both drop and scratch damage. The film also uses a new dry application process that removes the need for solution, is optically clear, and comes pre-cut to account for the device’s buttons, ports, and form factor. Wrapsol’s ultra film is expected to be available in the coming weeks for the iPhone, iPod, and other mobile devices; pricing has yet to be announced. In addition, Wrapsol is now taking orders for its traditional iPad film. The package includes film precision-cut to fit the iPad, a microfiber towelette, a mister of application solution, and a flexible application squeegee. It sells for $30.
XGear has provided iLounge with a pre-release look at its new Carbon Leather snap-on case for the Apple iPad. Sporting a design that covers the back of the iPad while snapping over the device’s four corners to provide a proper fit and added drop protection, the case also features a carbon fiber leather fabric exterior covering an ABS plastic shell, and open access to all ports and controls. XGear’s Carbon Leather snap-on case for iPad is expected to ship by April 3 and will sell for $50.
iKit has introduced two new cases for the Apple iPad. The iPad Drop Case is a form-fitting TPU case offering full access to all ports and controls, as well as an included screen protector and cleaning kit. It is now available for pre-order in a variety of colors and sells for $25. The iPad Leather Folio Case is made from genuine leather and features a padded, flip-style design with a horizontally-opening flap that doubles as a stand, an embossed brushed metal plate on the tip of the main flap, open access to all ports and controls, and an included screen protector and cleaning kit. It is also available for pre-order in black or gray and sells for $40.
Ozaki has provided iLounge with a pre-release look at its upcoming iPad accessories. The new lineup includes the iCoat iFit Pad, a plush sleeve-style case featuring a horizontal design and zippered closure, and the iCarry Pad, a unique case featuring a rotating, metallic-finish rear handle that doubles as both a horizontal and vertical stand. Finally, Ozaki will be offering an iCoat Invisible Pad screen protector for the iPad. Both the iCoat iFit sleeve and iCoat Invisible screen protector are expected to launch in mid-May, while the iCarry case is expected to ship at the end of May; pricing for all three products has yet to the announced.
STM has introduced its new Glove extra small laptop sleeve for the Apple iPad and other netbook-sized devices. Made from neoprene, the Glove offers 3mm of cushioning, a vertical, top-opening design, YKK zippers, and internal zipper guards to prevent scratching. STM’s Glove extra small laptop sleeve is available now in five different colors and sells for $30.
Scosche has introduced its new netSuit and netSuit Pro carrying cases for the iPad and other netbook-sized devices. The netSuit is a neoprene sleeve-style case featuring a reversible design and flap closure; it is available for $15. The netSuit Pro is a more traditional, briefcase-style bag with soft microfiber lining for protection against scratches, a zippered main compartment, external zippered pockets for additional storage, and handles that tuck into a pocket for added portability. It is also available now, and sells for $20.
Apple has banned protective screen film from its retail and online stores, iLounge has confirmed with several separate companies, a policy that will affect both cases and individual film packages beginning in May. In communications with vendors that have been ongoing for “some time now,” according to one company, Apple has said that it will remove both film-only solutions from its stores, as well as any case or other accessory that includes film protection as part of its package, such as cases that include film screen protectors. According to sources, the ban will impact all forms of screen film, including completely clear film, anti-glare film, and mirrored film, regardless of whether the purpose of the film is protective, decorative, or both. It will also prevent sales of film for iPods, iPhones, iPads, and Mac computers. One vendor speculated that the ban is an Apple marketing attempt to suggest screen durability, despite scratches that have damaged both plastic and glass displays of its products for years.
It is believed that Apple’s move will have ramifications for the accessory industry outside of its own stores, as the Apple Store constitutes a significant fraction of total sales for many developers, even though accessory manufacturers also sell their products through other channels. Despite consumer demand for film solutions, which are currently ranked the #1 most popular “cases” for both iPods and iPhones in the Apple Store, and the #6 and #7 most popular overall iPhone and iPod accessories, respectively, developers might not create separate versions of each case product, one without film for sale by Apple, and one with film for sale elsewhere. iLounge requested details on the change from leading film developer Power Support, which had no comment, as well as several case makers, who were aware of the new policy but had nothing to add. However, Mirage Mirror Screen Protector vendor XGear suggested that despite the Apple Store ban, its “marketing positioning will not change. This will open many new doors for us as we move forward in my opinion.”
iLounge has requested comment from Apple on this story and will update this article with additional details as they become known.
Update: We’ve posted responses to common reader comments on this story in a separate article.
Wearable, Inc. has introduced its new AirStash wireless flash drive with built-in media server. Airstash is a small device featuring a USB port on one end and an SD/SDHC card slot on the other. Once a card is inserted, users can fill the card with media from their desktop or laptop PCs, and then use the AirStash’s built-in Wi-Fi media server to access the content from any Wi-Fi-capable device with a web browser. Notably, the device’s browser-based interface has been optimized for the iPhone, iPod touch, and the iPad using HTML5, allowing Apple’s mobile devices to play and/or access any document, photo, audio, or video format supported by the iPhone OS. The AirStash is available now for $100.
Orbino has unveiled its new Padova Case for the Apple iPad. This form-fitting flip-style case is hand-stitched with waxed thread and constructed from fine leather and exotic animal skins. Features include a brushed metal Home button cover, a protective front cover with magnetic closure that flips open to serve as a vertical or horizontal stand, cutouts for the volume buttons, screen rotation lock switch, speakers, and headphone jack, and compatibility with Apple’s iPad Dock and iPad Keyboard Dock. Orbino’s Padova Case for the iPad is available for pre-order now in a variety of colors and materials; pricing starts at $209.
Belkin has introduced three new sleeve-style cases for the Apple iPad. The Vue Sleeve is made from neoprene and features a reinforced panel for screen protection, quilted lining, a transparent, expandable outer pocket for accessories, and zip closures on both the main iPad compartment and the exterior pocket. Also made of neoprene, the Max Sleeve features a pleated design that expands to fit more items inside, quilted lining, a reinforced panel for screen protection, and zippered main iPad and external accessory compartments. Finally, the Grip Sleeve combines a basic neoprene sleeve with a textured, laser-etched silicone surface for added grip, and also offers a soft inner lining, a reinforced screen protection panel, and a zippered closure. All three of Belkin’s new sleeves for the iPad will be available soon in purple or black and will sell for $40 each.
Alongside pre-orders of the iPad, Apple has begun accepting pre-orders for its initial range of iPad accessories. Apple’s iPad Case, priced at $39, the iPad Dock, which is priced at $29, and the iPad Dock Connector to VGA Adapter, also priced at $29, are expected to ship April 3, the same day as the first Wi-Fi-only iPads. The iPad Keyboard Dock, which sells for $69, is expected to ship in mid-April, while the iPad 10W USB Power Adapter, priced at $29, is scheduled to ship in late April. In addition, the AppleCare Protection Plan for iPad was also available, extending the warranty and complimentary telephone support coverage to two years for $99. Curiously, no pre-orders are yet being taken for the iPad Camera Connection Kit, as it was not listed anywhere in the store, and while the Apple Bluetooth Keyboard is listed alongside these other accessories, no pre-order is necessary, as it is already widely available.
Macally has announced its new line of accessories for the upcoming Apple iPad. The MetroClear is a clear, snap-on hardshell plastic cover, while the MetroLink combines a clear hardshell back panel with a silicone edge for added shock protection and grip, the MetroChrome adds a mirror finish to the snap-on hardshell MetroClear, and the Metro keeps the snap-on hardshell design but comes in black with a non-slip surface. The FlexFit is a clear soft case made from non-slip TPU material, while the mSuit is made from form-fitting, non-slip silicone and features a textured rear suface for added grip. Macally’s other iPad case, the BookStand, is a folder-style case with a full front cover that folds behind the case to act as a horizontal stand. All of Macally’s upcoming cases for the iPad offer full access to all ports and controls.
The ViewStand is an aluminum frame/stand for the iPad that allows the device to be mounted in any orientation, and features a scratch proof thermo polyurethane coating, pass-though openings for charging, and the ability to be used in a variety of angles. Finally, the iP-PAD808 is a four-way privacy screen protector, offering four-way screen darkening, an anti-smudge and glare resistant material, and a non-damaging, residue-free adhesive for easy application and removal from the device’s screen. Macally’s new lineup of accessories for the iPad are listed as coming soon; pricing has yet to be announced.