Keeping the red theme going, I picked up an Elago S5 Breathe case for the iPhone. The snap on case is called Breathe due to the small holes around the case which gives it a distinct look. The case is a soft plastic with a special coating that Elago claims will resist dirt and smudges. The coating feels real nice in the hand and in combination with the holes gives the case a good grip.
The Breathe comes in 12 different colors and can be purchased directly from the Elago site for $24.99. As with most cases, check Amazon for better pricing deals.
A couple of nice purchases that I am really enjoying.
Everdock Duo - $69.00 - A dual charging dock for mobile devices.
Bose Soundlink Mini - $199.95 Mini Bluetooth speaker with amazing sound.
Stay tuned for my further musings on these great products.
Simple notes. Sounds appealing? If it does, then read on. There are a plethora of note taking apps for iOS including the built in note application from Apple, which syncs via iCloud to your various other iOS devices as well as to and from a Mac. Simplenote, a basic note taking application that runs on iOS (universal) and Mac, offers the basic note functionality of the Apple Notes offering but adds a few extra features worthy of consideration for note taking needs.
Simplenote is a universal app which means it run in either a native phone or tablet app UI depending on the device it runs on. But wait, there’s more! There are also Mac, Android, Kindle, and a browser (web) client. Sorry PC owners, looks like you guys are stuck using the browser client. With all of these supported platforms, the ability to sync your data across all of these devices is critical. This is where Simplenote shines. Using the app on an iPhone, iPad, and Mac, the sync was almost intantaneous and flawless. Changes on any of my iDevices were automagically pushed to my Mac and vice versa.
Simple Note excels at entering in new notes quickly and easily. The add new note button (a “+” sign) is always available in the upper right hand corner of the screen. Once in the new note screen, you can type to your hearts content.
Notes are basic text, no fancy fonts or styles or markdown formatting, and no ability to insert or attach an image. However urls to websites are supported. The first paragraph of a note is set in boldface. Pressing return to start a new paragraph returns the text to normal (non-bold) font. At the bottom of the note entry screen is a freeform tag entry box. Tags assist in categorizing notes and multiple tags can be assigned to a single note. Tags can be added or deleted from the note.
While in the note create or review screen, pressing the information button (an “i” button) will bring up a slide-up-from-bottom menu that offers several choices: Send, History, Collaborate, and a trash can, which will place the note in the recoverable trash area. At the top center of the menu is an active word count. On the top right of the menu, there is a “pin to top” option button that when pressed will pin the note to the top of your note list. Pinned notes are marked with a circle with a dot inside prior to the note title. While writing this review using Simplenote on the iPad, I pinned the review to the top of my list and watched the change sync almost instanteously over to the iPhone sitting next to my iPad.
After the Apple leather case debacle, I decided to keep the "red" theme going by picking up an Incipio Feather case for my iPhone 5S. The Feather case has always been one of the thinnest cases available for the iPhone line. The offering for the 5/S is no exception. The case is a typical snap on rear shell with open top, bottom, and control side for easy access to all jacks, openings, and buttons. The case feels extremely nice and is made of a "soft-touch" plastic. My experience with soft touch coatings in the past hasn't been very good as they tend to smudge and look horrible over time. Hopefully the Feather lasts a bit as I really do like the look and feel of the case. I picked one up in Crimson Red and is available in a total of 14 other colors. The Feather lists for $24.99 at the Incipio site, but search around and you can probably find it for much cheaper. I picked mine up at Amazon for under 10 bucks but prices do vary.
This case is a very nice choice for anyone looking to keep their iPhone slim and reasonably protected from daily bumps, bruises, and scratches.
Apple has activated iBeacon technology at most of its retails stores. The technology is based on low power Bluetooth and can push information to your phone when you enter a particular radius of a given signal transmitter. In an Apple store, a transmitter can be a dedicated device or supposedly another computer or even an iOS device.
Well it works. Earlier in the day I updated my Apple Store app and permissioned it to use my location so that the iBeacons can locate me and push relevent and targeted message to me. I walked into the Grand Central store and I received my first "welcome to the Apple store" push notification and prompted me to open my Apple Store app. The next push notification I received was when I was in the accessory section and a push notifIcation said that I could read reviews of accessories before buying. It was pretty cool. I would have liked to see more but I guess I didn't activate any of the other beacons.
This is a very exciting technology and the possibilities are endless. I look forward to visiting CitiField during the next baseball season to see how MLB and the Mets are using iBeacons to enhance the ballpark experience.
The Winter season is practically upon us so to bring in the cold weather is another installment of What's On My iOS Home Screens. There have been some notable changes in home screen apps since my last posting back in the Fall.
As an avid tech fan I look forward to sharing my tech experiences both personally and professionally with those that have similar interests and passion for technology.