Before the Portable Media Expo and Podcast Conference concluded last night, we spoke with visiting representatives of several companies about their upcoming products. Here’s what’s new and hot.
Core Cases: The iPod and games division of InnoPocket updated us on its Aluminum Case for iPod nano (sub-$20), previewed in our Holiday Buyers’ Guide. Last-minute tweaks before release have added further protection and features, including the ability to mount vertically or horizontally on a belt. The company is also planning to produce user-submitted (and other) protective stickers for Click Wheels and the faces of certain other cases, such as its Sony PSP hard case.
A1QP: A-1 Quality Products showed off two new versions of its iKeychain holder for the iPod nano (iLounge rating: B+). One of the two cases is plated with strong, attractive gold. The other is encrusted with Swarovski crystals, and was in the process of being tested for durability. Prices will be a lot higher than for the standard iKeychains, but people will like the new glitter.
Pacific Rim Technologies: The company’s top product was its upcoming Nano Cradle, a complete dock and iPod remote control set devoted to the iPod nano. In addition to a physically nice design, the Nano Cradle has rear ports for both data and audio out, as well as a matching, medium-sized remote control for volume, track forward/backward, and play/pause. Oh – and it’ll be available in black, too. If the company does in fact sell Nano Cradle for the $40 price we’re hearing, we predict great things. Pacific Rim also showed off a 5G magnesium case, which like its 4G version has a hard clear plastic front for easy viewing (and strong protection) of the iPod’s screen. There’s still no top, Click Wheel, or Dock Connector protection, but the case looks nice.
Thought Out: The makers of FlexPed and Ped 2 were showing off new Fury speakers ($480) developed by Soundruid – a set of two satellite speakers and a large, substantial subwoofer that combine for 2.1 channel sound. While the enclosures of the speakers weren’t quite our style in looks (they look like small birdhouses, but feel a bit stronger), and there’s no iPod-specific component such as a dock, they can be significantly color-customized and even produced in natural wood tones.
A gallery of photos from the Expo is now available online for your enjoyment. A podcast of our Panel Discussion with leading iPod accessory makers is being handled by the Expo hosts and will hopefully be available online soon. Thanks to everyone who stopped by the iLounge booth: we enjoyed meeting you and hope you enjoyed the Lounge!