Engineers behind the Altoids box-based iPod and iPhone charger Mintyboost have discovered Apple’s latest way to provide the correct charge to newer iPods and iPhones. According to a lengthy, detailed post and video, they discovered that newer iPhones draw more power than the Mintyboost’s two AA batteries can provide. To get around the issue, the group reverse-engineered a Griffin TuneJuice, and discovered that by using different voltages and resistances, they could signal the attached device to draw less power, thus enabling the two AA setup to power newer devices, although at lower-than-maximum power. More information is available at the above link.
MusicSkins has debuted its new line of skins inspired by the MTV reality show Jersey Shore. Seven different designs are available, including two cast group designs, four graphic designs, and one design dedicated to cast member Nicole Polizzi, better known as “Snooki.” In addition, each skin is available for a wide variety of Apple devices, including the iPad, iPhone, iPhone 3G and 3GS, iPhone 4, iPod classic, first-, second-, and third-generation iPod touch, fifth-generation iPod, second-, third-, fourth-, and fifth-generation iPod nano, and third-generation iPod shuffle. MusicSkin’s new Jersey Shore skins for Apple devices are available now and sell for $15-$20.
Noreve St.Tropez is now shipping its Tradition B case for the iPhone 4. Made from handcrafted leather, the Tradition B is a play through-style case featuring open access to the screen, buttons, cameras, ports, and sensors, embossed interior lining, a snap closure, and an included removable belt clip. Noreve’s Tradition B case for the iPhone 4 is available now and sells for $50.
Recover has begun to offer its new line of wooden skins for the iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, and iPad. Made from 100% real wood and affixed with a residue-free 3M adhesive, Recover’s skins are precision cut and feature cutouts for sensors, buttons, and cameras. The iPhone 4 and iPad skin packs include both front and back skins, while the iPhone 3G/3GS skin includes only a front piece. Recover’s wooden skins for the iPhone and iPad are available in a variety of finishes and sell for $15-$30.
Gear4 has posted a preview of its new UnityRemote for the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. The UnityRemote is a wireless, Bluetooth-powered accessory that works with a Gear4-developed app to control a variety of home entertainment equipment. The small, circular accessory emits infrared signals in 360 degrees via five transmitters inside the device, can also learn remote codes not provided in the app’s built-in database, and is powered by three AA batteries. In addition, the app will allow users to add buttons form different devices to a single remote screen, eliminating the need to switch back-and-forth between multiple device-specific remote layouts. Gear4’s UnityRemote will be available in October and will sell for $100.
Apple has filed a lawsuit against several companies selling “unauthorized” electronic accessories for the iPod, iPhone, and iPad. Filed in federal court in San Francisco, the suit against Eforcity Corporation, Accstation, Itrimming, Everydaysource, United Integral, Crazyondigital, and Boxware Corporation claims that the companies are violating as many as 10 of Apple’s patents and additional trademarks.
At issue are electronic accessories, including chargers, speakers, and cables, which have in the past been known to cause damage to iPods when developed without regard to Apple’s specifications. “Many are of inferior quality and reliability, raising significant concerns over compatibility with and damage to Apple’s products,” Apple says in the suit. For a number of years, Apple has run a “Made For iPod” program and iPhone/iPad equivalents as a way to certify that accessories will be compatible with its products, but has also changed specifications when moving from one generation of device to the next, leaving many formerly “Made For” products unable to charge or otherwise work fully with later iPod and iPhone models—including the company’s own iPod Hi-Fi speaker system.
Shure has rolled out its new SRH240m+ Headset with Remote + Microphone for the iPod, iPhone, and iPad. Using a closed-back, circumaural headphone design with 40mm neodymium drivers and replaceable ear cup pads taken from the previously-released SRH240, SRH240m+ is the company’s first over-the-ear headset to include an in-line microphone and three-button remote unit for Apple device compatibility. Shure’s SRH240m+ Headset with Remote + Microphone is available now and sells for $80.
Incase has unveiled its new Slider Case and Snap Case for the iPhone 4. As in the past, the Slider Case features openings for all ports and controls, as well as a slide-off bottom piece for easy docking. The Slider Case is now available for $35 in Black, and will be available soon in metallic Dark Mauve, Gunmetal, Raspberry, and White. The Snap Case is a low-profile case that snaps around the iPhone 4 and is part of the iPhone 4 Case Program; it will be available for $35 in clear on August 9, and in black on August 16.
Best Buy is offering free invisibleShield film to iPhone 4 owners, according to a leaked internal flyer. Engadget reports that the retailer is offering free invisibleShield side film to iPhone 4 users in order to offset potential antenna problems, and possibly to up-sell customers on a full film set or case. In addition, the offer reportedly extends to all iPhone 4 users, not just those who purchased their handset at Best Buy. Calling your local store to double-check that they are participating is recommended; neither Best Buy nor ZAGG has yet made an official announcement about the program.
Immediately following Apple’s launch of the iPhone 4 Case Program, a case giveaway designed to reduce reception-related issues traced to the iPhone 4’s external antenna, iLounge editors discovered two billing-related errors that appear to enable some users to receive more than the correct number of free cases or refunds due. The first error appears to enable a user who ordered a Bumper case from Apple to simultaneously receive an automated refund and still be eligible for a free case using the iPhone 4 Case Program application. Separately, iLounge has discovered that a single person’s order for multiple Bumper cases led to the receipt of multiple refunds—while still remaining eligible for a free case through the application. As a result, one of our editors has already received credits and order confirmations for three cases. It’s unclear whether this is due to a lack of cross-checking the Apple IDs used to register for free cases with past iPhone 4 Bumper case orders, or quiet but intentional over-generosity on Apple’s part. We have contacted Apple to notify it of the errors and obtain a comment, and will update this article if and when we receive a response.
Apple has posted details of its iPhone 4 case program. According to the webpage, iPhone 4 users who want to receive a free case need to download the free iPhone 4 Case Program app from the App Store. Once the app is installed, users need to login with their iTunes Store account or Apple ID. The app checks the device’s IMEI and serial number to verify that the user indeed does own an iPhone 4, and lets the user choose an iPhone 4 Bumper or another case. Apple notes that for iPhone 4 purchases made before July 23, 2010, users must apply no later than August 22, 2010; otherwise, they must apply within 30 days of the iPhone 4 purchase. For advice on picking your free case, take a glance at our recommendation article.
Otterbox has debuted its new lineup of cases for the iPhone 4. The Impact Series Case is made from silicone and features inner coring for increased shock protection, push-through coverage for the volume and power buttons, open access to all other ports, controls, and the camera, and an included self-adhering clear protective film. It is priced at $20. The Commuter Series Case is a multi-layer case consisting of an inner silicone layer, a stiffer outer layer, and a self-adhering screen protector. It also offers access to all ports and controls and silicone plugs for the ports, and is priced at $35. Finally, the Defender Series Case is a three-layer protective case, featuring a clear protective membrane over the screen, a high-impact polycarbonate shell, and a silicone skin, with silicone plugs for the ports and an included ratcheting belt clip holster. It is available for pre-order now and sells for $50; Otterbox’s other cases for the iPhone 4 are listed as coming soon. [Thanks, Anthony]
Vaja has rolled out its new iVolution Grip case for the iPhone 4. The iVolution Grip is a open-face case offering coverage for portions of the device’s sides and back, access to all ports, controls, and the camera, a leather exterior, and metal logo plate at the bottom of the back. Vaja’s iVolution Grip for the iPhone 4 is available for order now with a handicraft process of 45 days and is priced at $65. In addition, Vaja has also introduced new versions of its iVolution Top case, which are physically identical but differ in the leather design.
Miniot has introduced its new iWood 4 case for the iPhone 4. Each iWood 4 is carved from a single block of selected woods, meaning that no two cases are exactly alike. Features include wooden push-through button covers, openings for access to all other ports and the camera, and a two-piece design with a slide-off bottom for easy docking. In addition, the iWood 4 can be custom engraved for free for a limited time. Miniot’s iWood 4 case for the iPhone 4 will be available for pre-order next week starting at €70, or roughly $90, with deliveries to begin on August 30.
A number of accessory makers have launched new offers aimed at taking advantage of Apple’s recent announcement of a free iPhone 4 case offer. Both Incipio and Proporta are offering Bumper trade-in programs, with Incipio promising $5 off any Incipio product for each Bumper sent to the company—a limit of two per household applies—and Proporta offering 20% off any Proporta case or screen protector for the iPhone 4 with each Bumper returned using the promo code “CASEFREE,” with no apparent limit in place. Fusion of Ideas is instead offering iPhone 4 users free side pieces of its StealthArmor protective film, with a shipping charge of $1.50, and the option to upgrade to a full-body kit at a $10 discount off regular price.
iHome has debuted a new alarm clock and charging station for the iPad, iPhone, and iPod. The iA100ZE is a modified version of the iA100 that was an iLounge 2010 Best of Show winner at this year’s CES, the iA100ZE is an app-optimized alarm clock offering an integrated Dock, Bongiovi audio technology, custom alarm and nap settings, the ability to sync the clock to that of the connected iPhone, iPad, or iPod, an FM radio with 10 presets, Bluetooth audio and speakerphone technology, programmable snooze time, and gradual wake/sleep functions. The iB969 is a charging station for the iPad, iPod, iPhone, and other USB-charging devices. It features a built-in iPad stand, two integrated iPod/iPhone docks—one offering sync capability and one offering quick charging—and a USB port for charging either the iPad or some other USB-charging device. Prices and release dates have yet to be announced for either product.
Quirky and SwitchEasy have each launched new cases for the iPhone 4. Quirky has introduced the Tilt, an angular bumper-style case featuring a plastic body, rubber front face, a unique bottom portion that flips back to serve as a stand, and open access to all ports and controls. It is now available now for pre-order and sells for $28. SwitchEasy has introduced its Colors case for the iPhone 4. Like previous Colors cases for the iPhone 3G and 3GS, Colors for the iPhone 4 is a silicone case offering push-though coverage for the volume and sleep/wake buttons, a unique “jelly bean” tactile home button, open access to all other ports, controls, and the camera, two included anti-static screen guards, a microfiber cleaning cloth, two Dock connector protectors, two headphone port connectors, and a squeegee for screen guard application. Colors is available in a variety of hues and sells for $15; for more information, see our First Look article.
Apple has pulled its remaining stock of iPhone 4 Bumper cases from its retail and online Stores ahead of its free giveaway. A check with an Ohio-based retail store, as well as with Apple’s online store, shows no availability of the Apple-branded cases, and a retail store representative confirmed with iLounge that the cases had been pulled due to the giveaway. Apple announced on Friday that it would be offering a free Bumper or other, yet-to-be-determined case to all current iPhone 4 users and those who purchase the handset by September 30 due to complaints over the iPhone 4’s antenna issues.
WaterField Designs has announced two new “Bumper-Fit”-sized cases for the iPhone 4. Company owner Gary Waterfield explains that due to the iPhone 4’s ongoing reception issues, the company wanted to create versions of its sleeve-like cases that could accomodate an iPhone 4 inside an Apple Bumper or any other similarly thin case. The Bumper Fit Smart Case is similar to the company’s prior iPhone 4 Smart Case, featuring a rigid insert for screen protection, water-resistant nylon on the outside, Ultrasuede inner lining, and brown leather on the sides. It comes in Slip, Flap, or Clip styles and sells for $39-$45. The company is also offering a Bumper Fit Suede Jacket, an Ultrasuede sleeve featuring a bottom loop to help remove the iPhone from the case, the ability to double as a screen cleaner, and an optional mesh rear pocket. It is available now, in both regular and Bumper Fit form, and sells for $10-$16 depending on options and fabric styles.
ProClip has rolled out its new line of holders for the iPhone 4. The lineup includes both padded and adjustable models of its tilt-swivel holder, tilt-swivel holder with pass-though 30-pin connector, tilt-swivel charging holder with cigarette lighter adapter, and tilt-swivel charging holder with straight power cord for fixed installations. Notably, the padded models are designed to hold bare iPhone 4 units, while the adjustable models can accept iPhone 4 units covered in a variety of different silicone-type cases, though not Apple’s iPhone 4 Bumper case. Also, all the holders require a custom vehicle mount which is not included in the price. ProClip’s new line of holders is available for pre-order now with shipping expected to begin on July 16; pricing ranges from $35 to $80.