Here’s our 2010 Year in Review of the best 10 hardware peripherals for your iPhone or iPad that we’ve come across in the last twelve months.
If you missed any of these or didn’t get a chance to check them out for some reason or another, don’t fret — all of them are still available and worth a look.
10. AR Drone Parrot
It’s going to be one lucky kid who gets this iDevice-controllable wonder
The AR Drone Parrot is a quadricopter that’s controlled by the iPhone, iPod touch or the iPad. It can be flown indoors or outside and features many sensors, including a front camera ,vertical camera and an ultrasound altimeter. High-tech sensors make it simple for kids to pilot. The AR Drone can also be used in video games, such as AR FlyingAce, a dogfight between two AR Drones.
The AR Drone Parrot is available from Amazon for $299.99
9. Vers 1.5Rs Clock Radio
There must be a special space reserved at the table in Valhalla for any designer able to make a fat brick look hot; if that’s true, then there’s a seat reserved right next to Jonny Ive’s for the Vers 1.5R’s designer (and yes, both design heaven and design hell are Scandinavian. Don’t believe me? Take a look at an IKEA catalog; now, go experience a 1980s-era Saab).
View Eli Milchman’s complete review here.
8. Just Mobile UpStand for iPad
The Just Mobile UpStand iPad stand is simply perfect. The form factor the stand assumes and the material it is made of coupled with how much it weighs makes it the perfect place to perch my iPad on. The stand sits just right upon my desk and holds my iPad horizontally or vertically leaving complete access to all buttons, switches, and ports — especially the docking connector.
Click this link for more information about this product and a gallery of photos of it in use.
7. Just Mobile Gum Plus
Are you an overactive iPhone user? Addicted to Twitter, Facebook, and e-mail? Is your iPhone battery not lasting as long as you would like it to? If you answer yes to any of these questions you might need emergency backup power. It doesn’t matter about your circumstances, you need a battery pack.
Just Mobile’s Gum Plus, which I tested this year, gives an iPhone over two additional full charges. I don’t have any major complaints about it and I’ll never leave home without it.
See my complete review here.
6. Jawbone Icon Rogue
Finally, a headset that doesn’t look dorky
Not many people feel cool while wearing a Bluetooth headset — especially true for the metrosexual. But the Jawbone Icon Rogue is an attractive headset with amber-hued highlights and boasts amazing sound quality, with excellent wind-noise cancellation. The small headset has an easy power switch and comes with several fit options.
The Icon Rogue is made by Jawbone
The Jawbone Icon Rogue is available from Jawbone for $99.99
5. Ballistic HC case for iPhone 4
The Ballistic HC iPhone 4 case is made for ruffians. Even if pink is their favorite color. Personally I’ll stick to black and that’s the color of the case I tested for this review.
The Ballistic HC case is the most heavy-duty iPhone case I’ve ever used or more accurately ever had on any cell phone. The case wraps your iPhone 4 in four layers of protection. The beautiful iPhone 4 disappears and becomes a rugged, rough and tumble cell phone suitable for, but not limited to very active people, a rodeo bull rider, Ninjas, or public safety professionals.
Read my complete review of the Ballistic HC iPhone 4 case here.
4. Pogo Stylus
It’s a pen for all of your Apple touch screen devices and it works better than your average sausage. Highly recommended for colder regions of the world where wearing gloves is the current fashion and the threat of frostbite prohibits you from cutting out the finger tips to reach your touch screen.
3. Apple iPad VGA Connector
You can use the iPad VGA connector to hook your iPad up to that projector at the office. Thrill your friends with your favorite iPad content (with a view limits) using this handy dongle.
According to Apple you can: “Watch slide shows and movies on the big screen by connecting your iPad, iPhone 4, or iPod touch (4th generation) to a TV, monitor, projector, or LCD display that uses a VGA connector. ”
2. Apple Bluetooth Keyboard
The Apple Bluetooth keyboard works on your Mac, iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad. If you have an iPad and a case styled like Apple’s iPad case you’ll find this a great solution for data entry on Apple’s venerable tablet.
Apple describes it like so: “The completely cable-free Apple Wireless Keyboard uses Bluetooth technology to connect with your Mac or iPad. So you’re free to move the keyboard just about anywhere within range and wirelessly type away. And its slim, compact design takes up much less space on your desk. ”
1. Apple iPad Camera Connection Kit
The iPad has a lot of untapped potential as an image editing tablet… but the only way to load your images on-the-go is to lug a laptop around with you or spring for the iPad Camera Connection Kit, which gives users a couple of options to load images on their iPad: either by connecting their digicam through USB or, if all else fails, slap in an SD card and read your snapshots off of physical media.
It’s not a bad solution, though we’d prefer a USB slot. You can now order the kit for $29.00.
So there you have it — ten stellar examples of hardware peripherals we encountered this year for our Macs. Did you come across this year some great gear or apps not mentioned here? Tell us about it in comments!
Thanks to fellow Cultist of Mac staff members Traci Dauphin, John Brownlee, and Eli Milchman for their contributions to this article.