All that Jide! (1st look)

On January 18, 2016, in Android, First Look, Review, by Guy Serle

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No, MyMac has not become an Android site (unless Tim follows through on his threat to switch if Apple drops the headphone jack in the next iPhone), but while surfing around I found an article talking about a company called Jide. Never heard of them? Not surprised as they’re a small Chinese company that seems to be a relative newcomer. Like most other Chinese companies, the products they make are firmly rooted in the Android world. However Jide is doing something a little different from most of the rest. They’ve kinda forked Android and turned it into a desktop OS. How does it do? Surprisingly well, thank you very much.

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Secūr SP-2000 Digital Solar Radio & LED Flashlight 

Company: Secūr

Price: $50 USD

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I am currently the advisor of the Environmental Club at the high school where I teach. As a result, I’m always on the lookout for ways to minimize the impacts upon the environment that our technology inevitably causes. Our club recycles hundred of pounds of batteries each year in an effort to reduce pollution in our landfills. When I discovered Secūr’s line of solar powered devices, I was intrigued and eager to take a look at them.

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PhotoFast’s MAX Extreme and Hello Kitty Lightning USB External iOS Storage
PhotoFast International links
PhotoFast USA buying and information links
$88 to $270 USA — See company web store for pricing and capacity options from 16GB to 128GB

Max extreme

Attention — owners of iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch devices that are full or nearing capacity. Help has arrived. Stop deleting a movie here or some video podcasts there or a few hundred photos elsewhere to free up a bit of space. PhotoFast’s MAX Extreme and Hello Kitty Lightning USB External iOS Storage mini-drives are the solutions to your storage crisis.

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MyMac Podcast 588: Remixing it AGAIN

On January 10, 2016, in Podcast, by The MyMac Podcast

mymac588
Gaz and Guy speculate about the future of iOS by talking about a unique version of Android from a company called Jide. What the fork?

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TechFan #238 – PineHead

On January 8, 2016, in TechFan, by Tim Robertson

tf238
Tim Robertson and David Cohen discuss the meaning behind PineHead, CES coverage, Quack Tech.
HumanCharger, VR, Oculus Rift, Google Play, Android, Russia, Space Flight, Star Wars, and much more!

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Links:
Russia Says Elon Musk is ‘Stepping On Our Toes’
I’m building a PC just so I can use an Oculus Rift
After 7-minute hearing, US Marshals raid a CES booth
Malicious apps in Google Play made unauthorized downloads, sought root

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Presence Free smart home motion detector webcam for security, surveillance, and energy
People Power Company.
Price: Free / £1.49 7 days / £3.99 1 month / £39.99 1 year pro subscription (UK pricing)

Have you got a spare iOS or Android device kicking around that’s just gathering dust? An older and now discarded iPhone perhaps? Why not turn it into a security device instead? Presence is an App and a service that turns your old iOS or Android device into a security camera with all the features you’d expect, such as motion detection, two way way video calling and even the ability to turn plugs or lights on or off with the right accessory.

Prescence Pro iPad

Getting started with Presence couldn’t be simpler. Download the app to your devices, run it, and choose whether your device is a viewer or sender / camera. If you only have one device to use streams can be viewed online via a browser.

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iRig Acoustic
IK Multimedia
$50 U.S.

fred irig 1

The iRig Acoustic by IK Multimedia is a mobile microphone interface designed for acoustic instruments. This is the first such device for acoustic guitars. This interface has been designed to work with most acoustic guitars, classical guitars, and ukuleles.

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Satechi 10 Port USB 3.0 Premium Aluminum Hub
Company: Satechi
Price: $60 USD
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As much as I love my iMacs and MacBooks, the number of USB ports included on my favorite computers leaves a bit to be desired. Minimalism is “in” at Apple, but that’s not necessarily practical for the rest of us. As a result, I’m always looking for a newer, bigger, and better USB hub to accommodate all of my flash drives, printers, and other USB-powered devices. I recently had an opportunity to take a closer look at the Satechi 10 Port USB 3.0 Premium Aluminum Hub, and I wasn’t disappointed.

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KRADL Air
UPPERCASE Design
$30 U.S.

fred stand 1

There was a time when laptop computers were strictly for use on the go, when you were away from your desk and needed to get work done. Laptops have become most people’s only computer, providing desktop like power with portability. In some cases you may want to keep your laptop in a more permanent place in your home, and UPPERCASE KRADL Air is a product for that scenario.

fred stand 2

The KRADL Air is a vertical stand for MacBook Air (11 and 13 inch, 2010 and newer). It allows you to stand your laptop Mac on its edge. In the stand, it takes up considerable less space on your desk and when connected to a monitor and a keyboard you can have a desktop-like setup with your MacBook Air. You can use this stand for charging your laptop when not in use. In this configuration it again reduces its table space and lifts just enough off the surface to protect your precious laptop from the inevitable spills that seemed to be drawn to our favorite, expensive devices.

fred stand 3

This is a simple product, there isn’t much to it, but the attention to detail is what makes this a great stand. UPPERCASE has definitely studied the design process of Apple and has made a accessory that looks like it could have come from Cupertino.

There are just three parts to this stand: the frame, the base pad, and the internal frame. The frame is made out of aerospace-grade aluminum, and if you have handled a MacBook Air you are familiar with this material. While the MacBook Air uses this for reducing weight, the KRADL has a heft to it that assures you that placing your laptop in it will not result in the whole thing tipping over. There is a silicone rubber base pad that keeps your table or desk surface protected from getting scratched, and there is a plastic internal frame in the aluminum frame that also protects your laptop from the base.

The KRADL design was put together thoughtfully to complement the sleek design of the MacBook Air and provide protection or give a smaller footprint for space constrained places.

MyMac review rating is 9 out of 10.

Look at the gallery of excellent photos on the product’s dedicated web site. 

Air Attack 2 for iOS – Review

On January 5, 2016, in Game, iOS, iPhone, Review, by Scott Willsey

Air Attack 2 for iOS
Company: Art In Games
Price: $0.99 USD

For me, iOS games can be broken into two categories: games for deep-diving into, and games for playing for 20 minutes here and there. Air Attack 2, by Art In Games, falls into the latter category, and that’s not a knock on it by any means. It’s a beautifully rendered game with fluid gameplay that’s perfect for jumping in and out of quickly.

IMG_0001IMG_0012

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GripZilla Pro Handle and Tablet Handler Pro for 10 to 13-inch Tablets
Company: LapWorks – Product links
Each is currently $45 (Regular Price is $60)

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(NOTE: Edited to correct some errors in original review)

Remember when there was pretty much one size for a tablet computer? When Apple came out with the original iPad it was 9.7-inches and the follow up Android tablets were much the same when they were released. Then in a desperate attempt to distinguish themselves from all the other Android tablets (and the iPad), the other companies started making them in different sizes.

Apple, wanting to tap into this market and prevent customers from buying a tablet based on a smaller size, came out with the iPad mini. Just as things were calming down, the maxi-tablets (no, I won’t make the obvious joke) were released. Apple recently followed with this trend with the iPad Pro, which is great because choice is good.

Trying to find accessories for some of these jumbo sizes can be a pain, especially with all the variances between tablets. So what can you do if you need a handle or stand? LapWorks has taken an all-in-one approach to the problem with the GripZilla (http://www.laptopdesk.net/gripzilla-pro-handle-stand.html) and Tablet Handler Pro (http://www.laptopdesk.net/tablet-handler-pro.html) lines. How did they do? Read on to find out.

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MyMac Podcast 587: The Worst of Apple in 2015

On January 4, 2016, in Podcast, by The MyMac Podcast

mymac587
Don’t you just get tired of those “Best of” shows? Well the GMen decide to turn that around and instead talk about the worst from Apple in 2015. Boy, talk about the pot calling the kettle black!

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Links:
Guy’s App Pick: Templates for Pages by Nobody $4.99
Gaz’s App Pick: Piano Tiles 2 (Don’t Tap The White Tile 2) Free some in App purchases but so far we haven’t needed them.
People’s Pick: Erick Diaz Not so much a pick, but a tip for those who have the iPhone 6S or 6S Plus. Inside any app, including the phone app while in a call, if you Force Touch the left side of the phone, and slide to the right, it invokes the app switcher. If Apple can, as I’ve seen in some patents, integrate the Touch ID sensor to the screen, the home button might be a thing of the past. Cool feature that I found today. Keep up the…whatever it is you call this thing you do.

Contact / Follow Us:
Guy@mymac.com
MacParrot on Twitter
Gaz@mymac.com
GazMaz on Twitter
GuyandGaz on Twitter
Feedback@mymac.com
Skype +1 Area code  703-436-9501

 

Lifeproof FRĒ Case for the iPhone 6s Plus
Company: Lifeproof
Price: $90 USD

FRE for iPhone 6s Plus provides waterproof, drop proof protection for the toughest adventures. (PRNewsFoto/LifeProof)

I admire the slim profile and the sleek lines and feel of my iPhone too darned much to cover it up. With that confession out of the way, I should also say that I am also very active in the outdoors, exposing my iPhone to the elements on a regular basis. This combination does not marry well.

There are times when I’m fishing in my bass boat or hunting from my tree stand in the rain and snow when it’s an absolute necessity to have some sort of protection for my phone. I’ll never forget the day I fell out of my boat with my iPhone in my jeans pocket and the panic I felt when I realized my phone may have been ruined.

I’ve tried Ziploc bags and all sorts of cases and pouches, some of which were okay, but none made me want to keep the case on my phone when I returned home from my latest outdoor adventure. To get me to put a case on my phone and leave it there all the time, even when I’m not out in the elements, takes some doing. I think Lifeproof may have done just that with the new Lifeproof FRĒ case for the iPhone 6s Plus.

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TechFan #237 – 2015 Retrospective

On January 1, 2016, in TechFan, by Tim Robertson

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Tim and David welcome in 2016 with a retrospective look back at 2015! What were the big topics on TechFan over the last year? Also, automated New Year Twitter failures, Star Wars Battlefront, coffee, and David has some cool news for July!

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The Nyne Mini Bluetooth Speaker – Review

On December 31, 2015, in Audio, Bluetooth, Review, Speakers, by Mike Breed

Nyne Mini Bluetooth Speaker
Company: Nyne
Price: $50 at Amazon.com in USA

 

Nyne Mini Bluetooth

With the myriad of portable Bluetooth speakers on the market these days, it’s easy to get lost in the mix. Nyne has done an exceptional job at creating a product in this category that stands out above the rest. With that being said, the Nyne Mini Portable Wireless Bluetooth Speaker is just as easy to carry around as your phone and yet delivers big sound from a small package.

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Canvas Smart Desk for iPad Pro – Review

On December 29, 2015, in Review, by Curt Blanchard

Canvas Smart Desk for iPad Pro
Manufacturer: iSkelter
Retail price: $68.00

iSkelter has just introduced a lapdesk for the new iPad Pro that performs like a tray. Take a dinner plate to the living room sofa and you have to be careful since balancing it is risky. Put that plate on a tray and you immediately feel more secure and comfortable.

canvas-ipad-pro-apple-pencil-accessory

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TechFan #236 – Post Holiday Tech

On December 27, 2015, in TechFan, by Tim Robertson

tf236
Tim and David discuss dialects, warm winter weather, flooding, bio-medical tech, a little bit of Star Wars (no spoilers!),  Wells TA5005 GoTech Bluetooth Mobile OBDII Diagnostic Tool, Circut design cutting tool, video game, and the design of Apple products.

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Links:
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B015E4BRTE
twitter.com/JonyIveParody

MyMac Podcast 586: Don’t keep the Keeper

On December 22, 2015, in Podcast, by The MyMac Podcast

mymac586

So the holidays are upon us and how better to celebrate than an extra long podcast with crackly bits courtesy probably from Skype! Even though we said we wouldn’t. Fortunately we can blame Karl Madden from the Mac and Forth podcast who joined the GMen this week. They talk about Star Wars (of course) that Karl and Gaz has seen and Guy hasn’t. Also some stuff about malware and programs that might seem legit but probably aren’t. Ho-ho-ho!

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Case Logic LoDo Large Backpack – Review

On December 22, 2015, in Back Pack, Review, by Vicki Stokes

Case Logic LoDo Large Backpack
Company: Case Logic
Price: $100

The Case Logic LoDo Large Backpack is well constructed with protective storage for a laptop and tablet. The backpack weighs 1.76 pounds making it ideal for daily use. However, the $100 price may be a drawback for the budget conscious consumer.

Case Logic is marketing this as a stylish, contemporary designed backpack for work, school or  travel. This large backpack can hold a laptop with a display size up to 15.6 inches. It easily accommodated my 15-inch retina MacBook Pro and iPhone. The laptop pocket is padded for protection. There is a tablet pocket that can store a 10.1 inch tablet and a zippered phone compartment. Another zipper compartment is provided to store pens, pencils and other items. The cotton canvas exterior is responsible for the light weight of the 1.76 pounds backpack. This is ideal since a 15-inch laptop and other electronics could add significant weight. The external pockets have magnetic snap-closures that will ensure the safety of stored accessories with a hook for keys in one of the pockets. The internal compartment has a draw string to allow easy access and prevent items from falling out.

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Aurora HDR – Review

On December 21, 2015, in Photography, Review, by Curt Blanchard

Aurora HDR
Developer: MacPhun
Price: $29.99 (Mac App Store)

AuroraLogo475

When digital High Dynamic Range (HDR) photography effects first appeared, the results often looked over-processed. With MacPhun’s new Aurora HDR you can make impressive images that don’t have that telltale HDR look. Aurora HDR is a Mac-only app specifically developed to produce these images. It’s a one-trick pony, but what a pony!

DuoSunset

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