iHome at CES: iW4, iW5 AirPlay speakers + iDM5 iPad workstation, more
As usual, iHome is making a major splash at CES, expanding its traditional lineup of speakers and clock radios to include a major new Bluetooth keyboard, new AirPlay models, and additions to its ColorTunes family of glowing speakers. Most striking are new introductions to the iW AirPlay series: beautiful white with silver chrome versions of the previously announced iW1, iW2, iW3, and iW4, as well as a totally new model called iW5.
While iW2 and iW3 were originally shown at last year’s show, both have undergone significant internal improvements, with the iW2 now clearly serving as a $179 miniature version of the iW1 without a battery, and the $199 iW3 re-engineered to add a rechargeable battery pack like the iW1’s. iHome also is showing multiple beautiful fabric color options for the new models, which could conceivably let users swap off the fabric speaker grilles for different decor-matching looks. Each unit is now being shown with an optional iPod/iPhone charging dock. A new version called iW5 is being previewed as well, smaller than the rest and simpler with swappable front speaker grilles.
The iDM5 Executive Workstation is an all-in-one iPad-focused Bluetooth keyboard with speakers, a microphone, and charging ports built in, capable of playing music, handling FaceTime/VoIP calls, and letting you type on an Apple-style chiclet keyboard. It’s expected to debut in March for $130. Additionally, a low-end portable speaker extension to the ColorTunes family of color-shifting LED units caught our attention: tiny pocket-sized speakers that glow in their centers, at a very low price point.
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