IvySkin Quattro T4 – Review


On November 27, 2008

I was first introduced IvySkin last year when they sent me one of their first-generation iPhone cases.  They claimed that although the screen out of the iPhone was covered while it was in their case you could still do everything you need to do with touch on the iPhone through it. it sounded too good to be true but in fact the case worked exactly as they describe.  When the iPhone was inside the case it was completely wrapped in the plastic material they used in manufacturing and yet the sensitivity of the iPhone screen remained almost the same.

With the Quattro T4 they have kicked it up not one notch but many. The case features their patent pending Xylo Glass ® technology fand has the same degree of "Touch-Thru" sensitivity as I’d experienced previously.  The new case is extremely streamlined and feels more substantial than the first-generation cases.  They described the case as "soft armor" and it’s as good a description for the material as any.  It looks and feels smooth and soft but is incredibly hard and adorable.  Made from a solid polycarbonate material, they case wraps the entire iPhone 3G. in as good a layer of protection as you’re going to find.  To use their words-

Mophie Juice Pack


On November 26, 2008

So here I am on vacation. The sun is warm, the waves are a bit rough and the wifi is horrid. Seriously, the wifi here brings me back to the good old days of dial-up and they weren’t such good old days.

As a result of the anemic wifi I have found myself using my iPod touch far more than the HP MiniNote 1000 I picked up prior to my trip. (it is, by the way, an awesome netbook!). The touch seems to work far better for me for checking email, keeping up with my rss feeds and even writing. It isn’t that the wifi is better on it but that the optimized interfaces on the Touch just feel faster and work much better for me.

Add to all this the fact that I am having a good time playing some games while away and the result is a Touch whose battery runs down super fast.
Enter the Mophie JuicePack for iPhone 3G.

The battery arrive the day before we left and I am glad it did. Like the RichardSolo 1800 we reviewed last week, the Mophie bring 1800mAhr of love to the Touch and iPhone. It is made of a stong material that also feels soft to the touch. A four light battery meter on the back tells you how much battery is left at the touch of a button and a miniUSB port on the bottom makes charging a breeze.

Where the Mophie stands out is in it’s physical design. Rather than attaching to the bottom of the device the way most external batteries seem to, the Mophie "hugs" the device like an openfaced case. No, it doesn’t protect it, but it does allow the device to be fully used. This even included the camera.

The result is the fact that I am typing this on my Touch while the Touch is powered and charged by it. While the battery adds significant weight, it does not interfere with the actual use of the Touch or iPhone. In fact, I tried playing some of my favorite racing games with both the iPhone and Touch in it and had no difficulty at all.
In all, this is a quality battery that was designed incredibly well.

What I Like: great design, no loss of device usage while charging, and adds tons of addition life thanks to huge battery capacity.

What needs improvement:
At a retail price of $99, it is substantially more than the RichardSolo battery.
Blocks headphone jack when used with Touch.

Review – Contour Flick Case For iPhone 3G


On November 20, 2008

When it comes to iPhone cases I’m kind of like Goldilocks- I’m constantly searching for the one that is "Just Right". (That, mind you, is the ONLY similarity!) 

I want good protection that doesn’t add a lot of bulk or weight to the device. I want easy and complete access to all its functions, especially the touchscreen. And I want it to look great.

I’ve used various permanent shields and while I like the degree of protection and the fact that they don’t add weight or size, I don’t like the feel of them. So my search continues…

When RichardSolo sent out their 1800 Backup Battery for review they were also kind enough to included another of the growing number of products they have available on RichardSolo.com- the Contour Flick. The Flick comes pretty close to meeting everything I want in a case.

Review – Richard Solo 1800 Backup Battery


On November 19, 2008

I loved my first generation iPhone but wished it had 3G. I love the high speed data of my iPhone 3G but wish it had the battery life of my first iPhone. Ah yes, you can’t have it all.

Thanks to accessories like the Richard Solo 1800 Backup Battery, though, you can get darn close!

I previously had a chance to review RichardSolo’s original 1200 mAh iPhone backup battery. It is a simple to carry, simple to use, solution to get more life out of your power-hungry iPhone. The RS1800 is its big older brother and the difference is huge! The battery is too!

Like their prior offerings, the RS1800 plugs into the dock connector of the iPhone.

Review – JBL On Stage IIIP Loudspeaker Dock



It took a while but there is finally a nice selection of shielded speaker systems built to withstand the horrid “GSM BUZZZZZZZZ” that is so common thanks to the iPhone’s built-in GSM radio.

I looked through a number of them for my office and eventually settles on the JBL On Stage IIIP Portable Loudspeaker Dock.

At a list price of just below $130, JBL describes the IIIP as

the ideal travel partner. Imagine the convenience of taking the JBL On Stage IIIP speaker dock on the road and enjoying the sound right on your desktop.

I have been using it for a while now and love it.