iPhone Makeover with mendmyi at the The Gadget Show

The iPhone might be one of the hottest gadgets out there but it’s really just a Ford – any colour as long as it’s black (or white). But not for much longer…iPhone repair outfit mendmyi now offer a customisation service called Colour Lab which offers over 170,000 colour combinations for the iPhone 4 and 4S.

mendmyi colours

Effectively, you can choose from 11 different colours or finishes for the front glass, front frame, back glass, back frame and home button. The parts call be all the same colour or all different colours; it’s your choice.

Coloured iPhones

The makeover is currently priced at £96 and if you think that’s expensive, you have to remember that these coloured replacement parts, not stickers, skins or covers. I saw the iPhones in the picture above and the quality is fantastic – you’d think they were manufacturer parts.

If you are interested in having the coolest iPhone in the office, check out my interview with Adrian from mendmyi at The Gadget Show.

Apps That Will Get You Ready for Diablo III

Diablo III will be released on May 15, 2012. My friends and I simply cannot wait to start playing! If you weren’t lucky enough to get into the beta, then you will want to check out a few D3 related apps. These can help prepare you to start playing Diablo III the instant the servers go live.

Diablo III Lore is an app that is compatible with iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. It requires iOS 4.2 or later. I’ve heard a lot of people asking about how they can quickly learn more about the lore of the Diablo games so that they will understand who the some of the NPC’s are, and the stories behind some of the quests, in D3. This is the app for that. Scroll through, and read to your heart’s desire.

Diablo III Skill Calculator is an app that I found on Google Play. It is compatible with Android devices. In Diablo II, the way you chose skills, and built your character, was a very big deal. Once selected, you couldn’t change anything. In Diablo III, you are going to have more flexibility about changing your skills than you did in Diablo II. This app will show you the skills that each class can use. You can play around with them right now, and get familiar with how it works before release day.

Diablo 3 Handbook is another app I found on Google Play. It is compatible with Android devices. This app is a game guide for Diablo III. You get information about each class, about active and passive skills, items, followers, and the world itself. It also contains a skill calculator.

Countdown For Diablo is available through the iTunes store. It is compatible with iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. It requires iOS 3.0 or later. Are you dying to know exactly how many days, hours, minutes, and seconds are left before Diablo III is ready? This is the app for that. You can check it as often as you like. Is it ready yet? No? How about now? Still no? How about now?…

It is worth noting that none of these apps are made by Blizzard Entertainment, the company that makes the Diablo III game.

Panashiba AIO-101

AIO-101How many of you have a docking station for your iPhone and than a separate one for your iPad. I bet many of you are raising your hands. That is the trouble with a lot of iPad or iPhone docks they will dock one or the other, but not both.  Until the AIO-101 by Panashiba.  The AIO-101 by Panashiba allows you to dock and charge either the iPad or theiPhone/iPod Touch. It has an FM radio and an alarm clock. It is also Bluetooth capable which allows you to use it with any Bluetooth capable phone to make hands free calls. It also has a usb port and an SD card slot, On the back of the device there are three HDMI inputs, where you can connect any HDMI capable device including a blu ray player or a video camera just to name a few. There is also an HDMI output which you can use to connect to any HDTV. You can then either watch the video on the large screen TV or on your Ios device depending on your situation.

Panashiba hopes to have this device available in the US soon and will run around $165.00. It looks like a pretty nice device, with a lot of capabilities. I would love to see how well it is made and if it works as well as advertised.

Interview by Jeffrey Powers of Geekazine



Guardian Trace for Your iOS Device

Guardian means security, but a new company called Baytan labs is taking that security into the mobile world with the Guardian Trace for iOS devices.  It works with your device’s contacts list and can be set up to send easy alerts if you find yourself in a bad situation.  A countdown is begun if you fail to deactivate with your PIN and when it reaches 0 an alert is sent to the contact(s) of your choice via both email and text stating that you have failed to check in from whatever event you enabled, such as a jog or date.  The alert will also include your last known location.

The app can also be used on an iPod, which, if you are going for a run, is useful, since that is a common device to carry along.  The app also has a simple “Send Panic Alert” button so if a situation unexpectedly arises you can quickly send a message for help.  The app is currently free, although that will apparently change later when some premium services will become available.  It is currently only available for iOS devices and you can find out more by visiting Baytan Labs.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central for the TechPodcast Network.



Sennheiser Unveils High End Headphones

Sennheiser is one of the big names in headphones, so it’s not unsurprising that a few of the latest models were released at CES. Nick hears the latest for sound buffs from Eric.

First up are the HD 700s, an open headset approaching reference standard. With a wide soundstage, angled transducers give it a sound experience similar to listening to a speaker array; other features are designed keep the sound as pure as possible. These headphones are aimed at audiophiles who want to hear every nuance of the recording. Pricey at around $1000.

Next are the HD 800s, a futuristic-looking headset that takes audio purity and quality to an amazing level. Every detail has a purpose in the design, giving unparalleled acoustic reproduction for the total audio purist. Even more pricey at around $1500.

And finally, the Sennheiser Amperior brings the world-famous HD 25s to portable devices by optimising the impedance to give superior sound from a smaller unit. Suitable for all MP3 players, Apple iPods and iPhones, the Amperior comes with an inline remote and mic. Available from March for around $350.

Interview by Nick DiMeo of F5 Live.



Blue Microphones’ Tiki, Mikey and Spark

Blue Microphones LogoIf you’ve listened to the Geek News Central podcast for a few years, you might have heard Todd talking about Blue Microphones as his mic supplier of choice. Here Todd and Don talk shop with Jon Maier.

Blue Microphones returns to CES this year with three new mics, all in the portable space. The new Mikey Digital is designed for the Apple’s newer digital connector rather than the older analogue one, meaning that more digital processing can be done on the microphone itself. In particular, auto-level sensing can adjust the input gain depending on the loudness of the source.

The Tiki is a brand new small USB device that’s been in development for over a year. It plugs directly into the USB port on the side of a laptop and has intelligent signal processing so that extraneous noise, such as typing, is ignored. It’s aimed at Skype and Google Talk users but it’s still a high quality recording device, so if needed, the DSP can be turned off to record live music as naturally as possible.

The studio-grade Spark Digital is a USB and iPad version of their pro mike, the Spark, both of which have glorious retro looks. Sitting in a shock mount, it looks great. Utility-wise, the Spark Digital converts the iPad into a mobile studio.

All the mics are expected to be available in the spring. Prices are $59 for Tiki, $99 for the Mikey Digital and $199 for the Spark Digital.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central and Interview by Don Baine, the Gadget Professor, for the TechPodcast Network.



Kidz Gear Volume Limiting Headphones

Volume Limiting Headphones

CES regular Jack Peterson talks with Todd and Don on the latest headphones for children from Kidz Gear.

Kidz Gear produces headphones with smaller headbands and ear cups to fit the smaller heads of children. This year they’ve brought to the market new wired headphones that have a built-in volume limiter that prevents children’s hearing becoming damaged through excessive sound levels. The headphones reduce the maximum sound level by about 20% into the 80-95 decibel range.

The new headphones are compatible with the iPad, iPhone and iPod ranges and include an inline remote  and mic control. They’re available from the Apple Store or direct from Kidz Gear for $29.99.

An additional new product in the same vein is a volume limit cable which can be added to already-purchased headphones to make them safer for children. Priced at only $9.99, there’s currently a special price of $5.99 showing on-line.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central and Don Baine, the Gadget Professor for the TechPodcast Network.



iLuv Wins With New Travel Gadgets

iLuv LogoiLuv will be familiar to many with their extensive range of matching accessories for tablets, smartphones and MP3 players. At CES this year, iLuv won no less than 5 CES Innovations Honoree awards to add to their collection of accolades. Todd gets a review of their latest products from Peter of iLuv.

The DreamTraveler is combined iPhone dock, USB charger and mains power strip squared aimed at those unfortunate souls who have to spend time in poorly equipped hotel rooms. It has two USB charging ports, three power outlets and an Apple connector for charging iPhones, iPods and iPads.

For the international traveller, iLuv has the RockWall, a dual USB charger that comes with the right mains plugs for different countries round the world.

Finally, the Mo’Beats is a portable tablet or smartphone cradle with Bluetooth wireless speakers that has a built-in lithium-ion battery which will run for about 4 hours.

All the products will be available in April or May. The Mo’Beats SRP is expected to be $89.99 but the website is currently showing $99.99. I think Peter gets his prices mixed up in the video as the RockWall is priced at $49.99 on the website and the DreamTraveler is $129.99.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central for the TechPodcast Network.



Zagg HZO – Waterproofing for Electronics

Zagg Logo

Zagg’s protective films are popular “first purchases” for new smartphone owners and at CES 2012, Zagg shows off their latest protection mechanism. Todd chats to Bill from Zagg to find out what it protects against.

The adage is that water and electricity don’t mix, and by extension, water and mobile devices don’t mix well either. Zagg hopes to change that with a new nanotech-based coating, HZO, that repels water so effectively that a dunk in the drink will have no effect on the device.

The HZO coating is applied during the manufacturing process so that every component is properly treated and waterproofed. There’s no physical skin or cover as the water-repellency is at the molecular level. Almost any device can be waterproofed – smartphones, tablets, MP3 players, headphones, but it has to be done during manufacture, not by the end-user.

Zagg is currently in negotiation with major OEMs so expect water-repellent devices to hit the market in 12-18 months and if you want to see an iPhone working underwater, then watch the video.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central for the TechPodcast Network.



Powerbag at CES Unveiled

Powerbag logoDan from Powerbag shows off the latest in geek fashion, a messenger bag that has a built-in battery and charging system. Up to four different devices can be charged in the bag at the same time. Included are a selection of charging tips, including the Apple connector and USB variants. The battery capacity should charge a smartphone several times, or a tablet once.

Available now for $139 to $249 for a rolling bag with a bigger battery.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central for the TechPodcast network.