Holiday shopping can be stressful as we all know. If you are struggling for unique or cool ideas for holiday gifts for the Apple fans in your life and are short on time to shop, I have some suggestions that might make your shopping easier, and hey, I did the research and tested the products so all you have to do is order. Each of these suggestions is new on the market and I hope something will put that spark in your eye because you think it is perfect.
Do feel free to print out this list, circle something in red, and leave it where the appropriate person will find it. All I can say, is at least one of these recommendations has recommended itself right under my tree, from me to me.
iPad Ultimate SleeveCase from WaterField. This case is available for both the original iPad and for the new iPad mini. It is cushioned with high-grade neoprene and wrapped in a nearly indestructible ballistic nylon shell. The front-facing interior is lined with screen-cleaning Ultrasuede lining. Here is something that is really cool - it is TSA Checkpoint Friendly.
Like all products from WaterField each case is custom ordered. The case is available in lead Indium or brown leather. There is an optional strap available. On the outside of the case is a pocket that will hold a power cord and earbuds. The iPad slides easily into the case, but is held securely. iPad’s with Smart Covers will work just fine, but the SleeveCase will not hold other kinds of cases. The iPad must be removed from the SleeveCase for charging. I love the look of this case and the ease of use. Prices start at US$59. Check it out at the company website.
Portable Charging Station from AVIIQ. This is an all-in-one travel bag with integrated 4-port USB hub and cable management. It is designed to work with the cables you already use. It will charge cell phones and tablets. The USB hub is detachable and comes with a retractable sync cable. Connectors will be required to use this product with Lightening cables.
A member of my family sometimes have to travel for work with almost no notice. Having something like the Portable Charging Station available can make or break a trip that depends on electronics for emergency communication. It measures 10 x 5 x 1.5-in (254 x 127 x 38-mm) and fits nicely in a briefcase or suitcase. There is a one year warranty. MSRP is $59.99 Check it out at the company website. It is also available from Amazon.
ECOXBT from ECOXGEAR. It’s a Bluetooth speaker, rugged, waterproof, floats, and makes music. What else can you ask for if you like the outdoors. It is IPX7 certified to be safely submerged at up to one-meter of water for up to 30 minutes. There is a lithium battery that works for up to 10 hours of continuous use, and it can be used as a speakerphone for conference calls. It has two speakers and a waterproof headphone jack. It recharges via USB cable. It comes in black/orange, black/black, and black/red. MSRP is $130.00 Check it out at the company website. I also found it at a slightly lower price on Amazon ($107.07 as of this writing).
AluRack by JustMobile. Just Mobile comes up with the most unique and useful products for the Mac world and they always blend perfectly with the products they support. The AluRack is no exception. It is designed for people with an Apple iMac or Thunderbolt Display. It creates a solid shelf to hold a laptop on the back of the display to conserve space. It is made from aluminum and screws together through the hole in the stand of your iMac or Apple Display, creating a solid shelf without causing any damage to your computer.
I love this product. I use an external display, not the correct one to take advantage of this product, but I fully understand its value. I have a small work area. So I have my keyboard, behind that is my MacBook Pro, and behind that is my display. The MacBook Pro is never opened, and it would be so nice to have it tucked away behind the display. The MSRP is $59.95. Check it out at the company website.
PowerJolt SE from Griffin. Griffin is never a company to be left behind and with the PowerJolt SE they have updated their PowerJolt to offer a car charger with the Lightning Connector. At MSRP US$24.99 this may be the gift you can afford to get all your friends with new iPhones or iPads. The PowerJolt SE stretches from 23.5-in (60 cm) to 48-in (121.9 cm) and plugs into your cars 12 volt accessory outlehose of us who played with dinosaurs as children remember when that was called a cigarette lighter). There is a LED power light that glows white when the PowerJolt SE is properly connected and ready to charge. The MSRP is $24.99. Check it out at the company website. It is also available on Amazon.
Stripe 13-in MacBook Pro Sleeve from Green and Gray. For the lady with class and style - this red and navy stripe print Stripe 13-in MacBook Pro Sleeve will be a welcome gift. It is made from water resistant, waxed canvas and features a padded and fleece-lined storage compartment with genuine leather wristlet and zipper pulls. The handles are reinforced cotton web with waxed coating. It comes with a one year warranty. The dimensions are 2.20 x 13 x 10-in. There are two compartments inside. The one for the computer has a snap fastening flap and the other has pockets for pens and other assorted necessities. I could easily use this as both a purse an a computer bag. The photo does not really show how attractive this bag is. The MSRP is $49.95. Check it out at the company website.
Hi-Speed USB Charging Adaptor from Satechi. If you give this as a gift or stocking stuffer your recipients are probably going to say “wow, where did you get this!” It is a simple little USB Adaptor that will charge most USB devices two to 4 times faster that normal. And, it lets you charge your iPad on any computer. It works with iPad 4/ iPad 3/ iPad2/ iPad/ iPad Mini/ iPhone 5/ 4s/ iPhone 4/ iPhone 3Gs/ iPhone and 3G/ iPod Touch.
To use it you switch between charging modes.
(Blue LED): all devices except Galaxy Tab
(Red LED): all devices except iPad
(LED Off): data transfer only, no charging
It doesn’t work with USB hubs. It is less than two inches long and less than one inch wide. Check it out at the company website.
My recommendations will continue in part 2 to be published in the next couple of days.