Quirky’s Pickup Power wants the be the last power-strip you’ll ever need. It houses AC outlets, USB chargers and – the best part – a detachable battery pack that’s always charged and ready to go.
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Boy, things are really heating up in the minimalist heck-with-all-this-crap-I-only-want-to-carry-one-thing space. Earlier this week, Distil Union unveiled Wally, basically a strip of leather that clings tenaciously to the back of your iPhone, with a small cavity you can fill with cards or cash.
But the $35 Crossover, created over at crowdsource-design site Quirky, looks like it might be even more minimalist than Wally — it’s just two silicone straps that grip the edges of your iPhone. And it comes in all kinds of colors to boot.
The one big advantage of traveling in the U.S is that I get to use your crappy, cheap-ass two-pin power plugs. I love that these small pieces of junk can fold up even smaller. Compare this to taking a vacation to the UK, where the adapters are the size of 1980s-era cellphones and young citizens have to be trained in the use of their safety features.
All of which is a roundabout (and culturally insulting) way to say I love Quirky’s new Pivot Power Mini, a tiny lightbulb-sized adapter which converts a single socket into two USB ports and a pair of power-points.
Take a look under your desk at that power-strip. My guess is that, even though it is probably overloaded with another power-strip plugged into it, there are at least a couple of spare sockets. It’s not that you don’t need them — it’s that you can use them thanks to all the awkward-shaped adapters jammed into it. If only you could bend and twist your power-strip to get better access to its hard-to-reach holes…
There appear to be a few ways to stop your earbuds from dropping to the floor when you unplug them from your waxy canals. One is to just run the cable from the iPhone/iPod in your front pants pocket up through your shirt/t-shirt/muscle-vest and out through the neck hole. Pop out the earbuds and there they dangle. This is so easy and well-known that even clueless teenagers can manage it.
The second method, I have just discovered, is to use the Props from Quirky.
I know, I know — it’s yet another power plug. But you’ll like this one, I promise you, because it solves a headache I guarantee you’ll have experienced.
It’s called the Plug Power, and it frees up that pesky leftover socket on the power-strip that has been hemmed in by all the other odd-sized adapters.
It’s a first-world problem to be sure, but that doesn’t make tangled headphone cords any less annoying. Wrapping them around your iDevice helps, but you’ll probably do it too tight and end up breaking the cables. And those reel-em-in hand-cranked spindles so beloved of Sony in the 1990s have disappeared, probably because they’re too much hassle, or just kept getting lost.
Bluetooth promised to be the answer, but still sounds awful and requires recharging one more gadget. So Quirky’s new Wired tangle-free earbuds have got a lot to prove. Can they do it?
Is it snowing where you live currently? Are temperatures well below freezing? Are you outside? If you answered yes to any of these questions then it is likely that you are wearing gloves right now. If you are just looking to keep warm that is okay, but if you want to use your iPhone, iPod touch or iPad you’re out of luck. The touch screens on these devices aren’t compatible with gloves so if you want to use them you’ll have to pull at least one of the gloves off and risk frostbite in order to use one of Apple’s popular devices.
Now there is a solution that will save your fingers, keep you warm, and still allow you to use your touch screens.
In the spirit of the holiday, we here at Cult of Mac have decided to spend the day with our friends and families, but before we do, we thought we’d observe the holiday in the most Apple-centric way we know how… by each writing about the Apple product or related product that we’re most thankful for this year. You can find our choices after the jump, and we hope to hear your choices too.
Here at Cult of Mac, we love the crowd-sourced, gadget-creating think tank at Quirky.com, and their latest is a fantastic answer to the tangle of USB cables snaking out of the back of your iMac.