Use the Biscuit ceramic wireless charger forever? So they say.


The ceramic Biscuit charger is designed to be upgraded.
The ceramic Biscuit charger is designed to be upgraded.
Photo: Charles Duffy

A Kickstarter campaign promises a new iPhone wireless charger with a zirconia ceramic body and interior mechanics designed for easy repairs and upgrades. That means it bucks the “planned obsolescence” trend and begs longterm — and even permanent — use. The product’s name? Biscuit.

The value of old iPods could be music to your ears


Tony Hawk, Madonna and No Doubt are just a few of the names whose signatures graced Special Edition models of the iPod Classic.
Tony Hawk, Madonna and No Doubt are just a few of the names whose signatures graced Special Edition models of the iPod Classic.
Photo: Ivan Chernov

Cult of Mac 2.0 bugNick Wellings listens to music on his iPhone, preferring not to disturb any one of his 108 iPods.

He figures his collection would hold 231,000 songs, but only one has ever been touched or seen the light of day. They remain factory sealed in their boxes.

The iPod’s status as an icon was brief but seismic, a sleek and at times colorful trigger of upheaval to the music industry in the middle of the century’s first decade. Soon the iPhone with a media player, that grew more powerful with each generation, relegated the iPod to junk drawers, closets and boxes, next to that cassette-tape-playing Sony Walkman.

This iPod Nano Concept Better Is Than The Real Thing


I'd trade my crappy square Nano in for one of these in a second
I'd trade my crappy square Nano in for one of these in a second

We love us a good iConcept design here at Cult of Mac, and we especially love those which appear to be better than the Apple product they are based on. So I’m happy to bring you Enrico Penello’s iPod Nano Touch, a great-looking update to the terrible iPod Nano.

Celebrate Earth Day With Apple’s Recycling Program [Earth Day]


In 2005 Apple responded to mounting pressure from environmental activists by announcing a free recycling program for its iPod digital music players. Fast forward to 2010, five years later, and this wonderful program is still in existence and it isn’t just for iPods. I thought I should remind you about it, because I nearly forgot about it when my 80 Gb iPod started to act flakey last Fall after years of service.

The program is a win-win for customers, like myself, that are interested in recycling electronics (an effort to save the Earth), upgrading to a new iPod, iPhone, Mac, or iPad, and saving some money at the same time.

Choiix Power Fort Battery Pack Will Juice Your iPods, Your iPhones, Your iPads and More



If you mostly play around with Macs, you’ve probably never heard of Cool Master: the company usually dedicates itself to the task of making the sorts of outrageous, glowing computer cases favored by the sort of mouth breathing PC uber-nerds who list their Counterstrike stats on their curriculum vitaes.

It’s interesting, then, to see Cool Master release a product that can be used by Apple fans, even if it is as bog standard a gadget as an external battery pack.

Called the Choiix Power Fort 5.5 Whr, this battery pack is about the same size as an iPhone and has a single charge port on the bottom that will allow it to juice up any gadget under the sun capable of sucking down electricity through the USB standard.

For Apple-only households, this means you can juice your iPod Touch or iPhone up for an additional eight hours. iPods can expect another 48 hours of on-the-road battery life. Even the iPad should get a few extra hours from the Choiix, and Cool Master says that the 5.5Whr can be recharged up to 300 times while retaining 85% of its total capacity.

Is it worth buying? If you’re looking to recharge a variety of devices, it might be a good deal, but it’s hard to tell, given how cagey Cool Master is being about the price.

Toys ‘R’ Us Taking iPod Trade-Ins



Is that old iPod Classic just not doing much since you got your 64GB fourth-gen iPod Touch? Wondering what to do with the old clickwheel? Head on over to Toys ‘R’ Us and trade it in for a Voltron or He-Man or Alien Goo Blaster or something. You can get up to $100 in gift cards for your old iPod, depending on how crappy it is.

Hearing Loss Blamed On iPods May Be False Positives Says New Study



The role of iPods and earbuds as inner-cochleal deafening devices has been debated for years, with recent studies suggesting very strongly that hearing loss in children and teenagers is much higher than it should be thanks to the likes of Apple’s portable media player.

It might not be quite time to strike a new iPod off of your child’s Christmas list, though: a new study suggests that the prevalence of young people suffering from hearing loss thanks to loud music may be much lower than it has seemed.

According to a report done by the University of Minnesota’s Department of Speech-Language-Hearing Sciences, the conventional hearing tests are producing false positives for hearing loss at a rate of about ten percent.

That’s not enough, obviously, to throw caution to the wind. Cramming ear buds down your aural holes, putting on some Iron Maiden and then wildly spinning your iPod’s volume wheel until brains start dripping from your tear ducts is still going to have some consequences.

That said, it seems that the threat iPods pose to the hearing of our nation’s youth is about the same as it ever was: as long as you listen to your iPod at a lower, more responsible volume, you’re fine