This week we check out the best iPhone cases for using underwater. And seeing as the only reason to take an iPhone underwater is to snap pictures, we’re looking specifically at the camera capabilities.
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Great games don’t always need amazing graphics and sound, but they do need a strong premise and a lot of heart. A Dark Room, an outstanding text-based adventure game with minimal graphics, starts off as a simple survival story and eventually blossoms into a full-on Fallout-style role-playing game (RPG).
Category: iOS Games
Works With: iPhone and iPad
Much of the joy of playing A Dark Room is watching it unfold in surprising new ways. The game starts simply — you’re alone in the dark with a single button to press to start a fire. Eventually, new buttons appear so you can perform actions like collecting wood, and a character called the Builder shows up to help you form a shelter.
Works With: iPhone 5/S
Who’d have thought that four tiny stick-on plastic corners could make such a great iPhone “case?” Yet the Bezl, a case so minimal it doesn’t even have room for vowels, is one of my favorites. That might not be surprising for someone who avoids cases altogether, but they’re pretty useful for something so tiny.
This week we look at docking stations for the MacBook. Docks let you stow your laptop out of the way. With its lid closed, and yet still use its brain to power a monitor and hook up to a mouse and keyboard.
Some docks are simple dumb stands, others offer hookups that the modern MacBook lacks, like HDMI and Ethernet ports.
Let’s take a look at three of the best.
Works With: iPhone 5/s
Summer’s (nearly) here! And that means we are forced outside to use our devices in places that remain inhospitable to our iPhones and iPads.
The Incipio Atlas ID is a slimline waterproof iPhone case that lets you keep using the iPhone 5s’ Touch ID scanner, even while it’s in the case.
Sometimes you just want an iPhone case that protects that beloved all-encompassing communications and gaming device from the vagaries of your crazy life, for sure.
Category: iPhone Cases
Works With: iPhone 5/5s
There are numerous options for those of us who tend to the “drop our gear constantly” school of gadget ownership, but most of them end up being incredibly bulky and difficult to use. Some even provide a screen guard that is less than touchable, as it were.
The Voyager series for the iPhone 5 and 5s, however, aims to provide similar drop, screen, and debris protection as many of these other cases, all for a more affordable price.
I took the case out for a spin to see if it could, in fact, protect my iPhone 5 without trouble, and whether the added bulk is worth the trade off in protection.
Some materials have integrity. Consider aluminum, Jony Ive’s material of choice, and then compare it to plastic. Under the skin, plastic feels wholly artificial, a lump of congealed and polished chemicals; in feel and smell, there’s something unnatural and slightly impure about it. But aluminum feels clean. It has texture. It isn’t just a facade: It is true to itself, right on down through.
Works With: Any MacBook
Another material with integrity is wood. It is true to itself, from the veneer to the grain. It has texture. It is clean. And it has history. Wood actually picks up the oils from your hands, and develops a patina. And because of its innate qualities, wood pairs exquisitely with Jony Ive’s chosen material of integrity: aluminum.
Which brings us to Twelve South’s latest product, the BookArc möd. An organic, well-crafted version of the accessory maker’s popular BookArc stand, it is a laptop dock that offers every bit as much integrity as the MacBook it is meant to house… both different and complementary at once.
Works With: Anything with Bluetooth
Braven’s 710 Bluetooth candybar speaker has a lot going for it. It’s the same size as my favorite pocket speaker ever, the Braven 650. It’s made of aluminum, it has the same battery-sharing tech as all the other Bravens, and it even fixes some of my complaints about the 650 – it has proper buttons for volume and play pause.
Hell, it’s even waterproof. But there’s one thing that isn’t quite so good. It doesn’t sound as good as the 650. Not by much, but enough that you should still buy the 650 – unless you want to use it in the shower.
Yes, we’re reviewing a paper notebook. The thing is – spoiler – this one is awesome. Forget Moleskine, which is nice marketing wrapped in faux leather wrapped around thin, porous, easy-bleeding pages. The Baron Fig Confidant is what you want.
Works With: Pen or pencil
It’s packed with clever “features,” and yet you don’t notice the book at all when you’re using it. Does any of that sound familiar to you Apple users?
Works With: Cameras, iPad mini
I have a kind of standing checklist of things I like and things that annoy me in bag design. Booq’s Python Mirrorless Bag flags just one of my “annoyances,” and that’s a purely aesthetic matter. That’s not to say it’s perfect, but it’s pretty damn good at what it does.