Tag Archive | Accessories

Adventure-Proof Your iPhone with the Affordable and Rugged Dualtek XT.

There are an abundance of iPhone case on the market that claim to be heavy duty; and while many may meet the rigorous Military Standard criteria, some are better than others. Recently one of my associates in the PR industry turned me on to the Dualtek XT from Pure.Gear ($49.99), and I have to say, overall I was quite impressed. Read on to get the complete scoop as well as to hear about the pros and cons of this new, ruggedized, “extreme terrain” iPhone case.

First of all, it’s worth noting that the Dualtek XT is compatible with both the iPhone 5 as well as the Touch ID-enabled iPhone 5s, which can’t be said for many of the current crop of heavy-duty protection iPhone 5 cases, many of which don’t accommodate the 5s Touch ID. This case offers superior protection from the elements and from impact, all in a very affordable package. Its easy to get on and take off and the built in screen protector is comprised of a superior scratch-resistant plastic that should hold its shine for a good long while. The ports seal well, if not quite as securely as some of the pricier rugged protection iPhone cases. An added bonus is the little lanyard attachment point allowing you to attach either a key ring or a lanyard to the corner of the case, which gives you a much better hold on your iPhone.

If you primarily use headphones or Bluetooth devices with your iPhone then the following might not be a  big deal, but I have to say, the sound quality of the iPhone’s speakers when in this case is pretty horrible. I’m prepared for every extreme-duty iPhone case to sacrifice some level of sound quality in the name of ruggedization, but this case creates what I’d consider severe distortion. If you don’t talk on the phone much or don’t listen to your iPhone’s speakers, then this may be a non-issue, and then again, the affordability of this case may trump its poor acoustics.

Adventure-Proof your iPhone with the Affordable and Rugged Dualtek XT.


Adventure-Proof your iPhone with the Affordable and Rugged Dualtek XT.

Adventure-Proof your iPhone with the Affordable and Rugged Dualtek XT.


Adventure-Proof your iPhone with the Affordable and Rugged Dualtek XT.


  • Well-designed, slim profile case. Doesn’t add much in the way of unnecessary bulk.

  • Grippy exterior and lanyard attachment point help ensure your iPhone doesn’t leave your side.

  • High-quality, scratch-resistant screen protector built in to front panel.

  • Low cost makes this a good deal for someone looking for an extreme-duty, protective case that meet the rigorous MIL-STD and IP-65 protective ratings.

  • Compatible with the 5s Touch ID.



  • The case has full water resistant protection over the iPhone’s speaker but this comes at a price. The sound quality of the iPhone’s speaker is significantly distorted when it’s in this otherwise exceptional case.

  • Very few color options.


If you are looking for a reliable protective case for your iPhone 5/5s, at a savings of between $10 to $50 over some of the other extreme-protective cases out there, this one is a good deal-if the sound output from the iPhone’s speakers isn’t a big deciding factor. I give the Pure.Gear DualTek XT 3 out of 5 Stars, and I have to emphasize that the only thing keeping this case from being a 4.5 Star case are its acoustics. Hopefully Pure.Gear will improve on this issue in the DualTek XT’s next iteration.


Images courtesy of CargoCollective.com


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Semi-Legal Bluetooth Call Recorder: Did The Wire Teach Us Nothing?

Your smartphone can do many things, but because of legal restrictions, it can’t easily be used to record a conversation. This Bluetooth handset happily will, though, documenting over 340 hours of calls, whether or not the other party knows it.

In most areas, the act of recording a phone conversation isn’t necessarily illegal. It’s when you do it without the other party’s consent that problems can arise. So this handset, which connects to any Bluetooth equipped phone like a headset, can be set to automatically play a custom “this conversation is being recorded” message before every conversation. But only if you want it to.

The $200 recorder has just two gigs of storage on board, but it uses enough compression to hold over fourteen days worth of conversations which can be annotated with comments to make sorting through them a little easier. For reporters the device is perfect for transcribing interviews, or finding a specific quote, but it’s also handy if your conversation has important legal implications. And since people tend to be more honest when they know they’re being recorded, it could even have the benefit of scaring off telemarketers who might not be on the up and up.

2 in1 Accessories Kit Samsung Galaxy S4 Case Cover Protective Case Cover leather Flip Case Protection Case Protective Cover Skin Case Shell for Samsung Galaxy S4 handytasche i9500 And i9505 Pearl Blue Butterfly + Rhinestone Bling Pen Touch Pen Stylus with 3.5mm Anti Dust Plugs Reviews

2 in1 Accessories Kit Samsung Galaxy S4 Case Cover Protective Case Cover leather Flip Case Protection Case Protective Cover Skin Case Shell for Samsung Galaxy S4 handytasche i9500 And i9505 Pearl Blue Butterfly + Rhinestone Bling Pen Touch Pen Stylus with 3.5mm Anti Dust Plugs

  • Materia: Synthetic Leather
  • Specifically designed for Samsung i9500 i9505 Galaxy s4 desighed
  • Perfect protection for your phone before Krazern, dirt and bumps. Very easy to attach and remove. make you feel comfortable when you handle it.
  • New, of superior leather
  • With this product, you can function your device and keep it safe

Features: – Cut out for camera – The ease of use is not restricted. Form and load stable. – Clings to the phone – Protection from dust, scratches and other damage – 100% accuracy

Up by Jawbone aims to keep you healthy

Wristband and app combo

Jawbone, maker of funky headsets, has announced its latest product, Up. Think of Up as like one of those charity wristbands that have been popular over the last few years, except much cleverer.

And that’s because Up features a sophisticated motion-tracking engine that helps you monitor a number of key aspects when it comes to your health.

“The MotionX engine inside the Up band is the result of years of technology development and innovation. MotionX is both extremely accurate and power-efficient, which is critical in delivering a 24/7 product experience small enough to wear,” said Philippe Kahn, CEO and founder of Fullpower, developer of the MotionX technology.

Combined with the free iPhone app, Up allows you to keep track of your activity by monitoring steps, calories burned, distance, pace, and active versus inactive time throughout the day; your sleep including hours slept, time to fall asleep, phases of sleep (deep versus light) and overall sleep quality; and finally what you’ve eaten.

You take photos of the food you’ve eaten and the app analyses this along with info such as where you’re eating and when you’ve eaten.

The wristband is designed to be worn 24/7 and will even give you reminders during the day to eat, be active or rest. You can also join fellow Up users on an online community to help you stay motivated.

“As the global health crisis mounted, we felt a strong sense of responsibility to see if we could leverage our resources, talents, and ecosystem to try and help make a difference,” said Hosain Rahman, Jawbone CEO and founder.

“Up is Jawbone’s first step in giving people tools to become engaged as consumers of their own health. It’s a complete system designed to integrate seamlessly into one’s total lifestyle, 24 hours a day, not just the few times a week people may work out.”

The Up band comes in three sizes (small, medium, large) and seven colours and will be available for $99.99 on 6 November. A global launch is planned for later in the year.

Q&A: The Making of The Amiigo Fitness Monitor


I love that in this day and age, a great idea can go from relative obscurity to overnight success thanks to the power of the Internet and the funding of the general public. Crowd-funding resource Indiegogo is one of the top websites where great ideas get brought to life, and the Amiigo Fitness Bracelet ($99) is one of its latest success stories.

The popularity of the personalized and customizable vitality tracker already is exceeding expectations, and is now in an expanded fundraising phase as it prepares to bring the Amiigo to market.

Currently, the device and its app are available to early birds for a $99 introductory price, and according to one of Amiigo’s co-founders, David Scott, it should begin shipping to Indiegogo customers in June. Once Indiegogo orders are met, the Amiigo will become available publicly within a few months.

The rumored iWatch may indeed be inching its way closer to market, but until then, there’s no shortage of wearable computers to monitor everything from text messages and e-mails to our motions and activities. It will be interesting to see where this new era of the wearable computer takes us. If you’ve been tracking Apple’s patent acquisitions, then you can reasonably predict that the future of wearable iOS-oriented technology is about to become a crowded field. The Amiigo fitness monitor is therefore ideally poised to lead the way in this blossoming field, and usher in a new era of interactive, wearable smart-technology.

The Spanish word “amigo” means companion, or friend, and as your own personal fitness-tracking device, the Amiigo is just that. It reports back to you regarding everything from your vital statistics to the amount of energy you exert at any given moment. Furthermore, the Amiigo is programmable to detect your own unique motions, giving you the most accurate assessment of your energy output and how your body responds to a variety of specific activities.

While there are certainly other options available for fitness monitors that interface with our iOS devices, the Amiigo is the first I’ve come across to provide such detailed information on such a wide range of motions and activities. This is the closest thing to a commercially available, AI fitness monitor that I’ve seen so far.

According to Amiigo’s Indiegogo campaign, “The Amiigo allows users to track specifics like; exercise type, reps, sets, duration, speed, and intensity. Amiigo also tracks heart rate, blood oxygen levels, skin temperature, overall activity level, and calories burned.”

Additionally, “The Amiigo can determine exactly what kind of exercise activity you are doing and can track and identify over one hundred different activities and then correlate these activities with physiological information such as heart rate and blood oxygen saturation. With the Amiigo users can also create and record new exercises that might be unique, abstract or specific to them. After a user records an exercise, it will be recognized in future workouts!”

Recently Amiigo co-founder David Scott took some time with iPhone Life to discuss the Amiigo and how informative, intuitive, and innovative it truly is.

iPhone Life: Thank you for taking the time to chat with iPhone Life. For starters, can you tell our readers a little bit about your inspiration and goals for the Amiigo?

Scott: With the Amiigo, our focus was to create the most engaging fitness experience, in the most user-friendly format. The Amiigo provides measurements and tracking that will definitely be helpful to hardcore athletes, but it’s also designed to be helpful to the less dedicated athletes. The Amiigo was designed to help an individual tailor their personal fitness goals to meet their workouts.

The Amiigo allows you to share your metrics and stats with family and friends. We feel that the social (competitive) element means that you will be more likely to achieve your fitness goals. The Amiigo software can easily be integrated with Facebook, and we are also working hard to build our own social platform.

iPhone Life:We’ve seen a number of wearable fitness monitors pop up over the past couple of years, how does the Amiigo set itself apart from the rest of the options out there?

Scott:Well, two years ago this sector didn’t even exist. Currently, most fitness monitors are just glorified oximeters, they don’t register motion, so that means they don’t register anything on a stair stepper or while cycling for instance.

If you do exercises like free-weight squats or leg presses, other devices may not even register that you did anything, much less that you had different exhaustive experiences. The Amiigo will provide you with precise physiological data that lets you know what you did and how much energy you exerted as well as incorporate a social element that can really help you feel motivated and inspired.

The Amiigo Fitness Bracelet is ideal for:

 The Gym: Weight Equipment, Cardio Equipment, Free Weights, Crossfit

 Cycling: Road and Mountain Biking 

 The Water: Swimming and Water Sports

 Outdoors: Hiking, Walking, Jogging

 Sports: Basketball, Soccer, Baseball, Tennis, Golf, Football, Rugby

 You: Create and Record your Unique Exercises




Munitio’s New SV Earphones: Precision Sound, Luxurious Style

Siva's Reviews: Munitio SV

“To hear a full frequency of a recording, you don’t even have to turn it up loud!”

-Kool Kojak, multi-platinum songwriter who produced Ke$ha, Nicki Minaj, Flo Rida, Katy Perry

Recently, I had the opportunity to connect with the team at Munitio, a precision sound brand specializing in lifestyle electronic accessories. Pronounced “Muni-she-yo,” as in the Latin word for fortification and defense, Munitio audio gear embodies strength, authenticity, and style. Before this year’s Consumer Electronics Show, I must admit, I wasn’t familiar with this small San Diego-based company. Now that I am, I am excited to tell you more about it and share my review of one of its flagship products, the new SV earphones.

Siva's Reviews: Munitio SV

The Munitio SV earphones are one of the most balanced pairs of earphones I’ve had the pleasure of trying out. To say I was very impressed with their exquisite, crystalline sound delivery would be an understatement. Listening to music through the SVs was a surreal experience. The complexity and clearly delineated layers of acoustics the SVs pumped out would impress even the most discerning audiophile.

The SVs captured my attention on so many levels. On the one hand, it was easy to get lost in the pristine sound quality of whatever I happened to be listening to; On the other hand, I found myself in auditory awe at all of the details and nuances I was able to hear using these precision earphones. In some instances, songs I’m very familiar with  felt like I had never heard songs, which in actuality, I was very familiar with.

Siva's Reviews: Munitio SV

“More consumers are realizing it’s better to have headphones that sound good based on personal listening tastes, rather than just buying what everyone else has,” said MUNITIO co-founder Danny Massaro. “Appearance is obviously important too, so we’ve created headphones with unique style and sound identities that appeal to certain lifestyles and listening preferences and allow people to hear their music like never before.”

Their latest addition to an already stellar line up continues in the tradition of excellence! Regarding the SVs, MUNITIO co-founder, Danny Massaro had this to say, “Acoustically, each MUNITIO product is designed with its own unique sound identity that appeals to an individual’s personal listening preference.  For instance, the SV is defined by an ultra-smooth frequency response curve through the mids and highs, exceptional vocal clarity and fast, accurate crossover transitions between instrumentals. Stylistically, MUNITIO products take their cues from a variety of different sources, but always with studio-grade performance, rugged industrial design and tactical functionality at the core. Some of the SVs design heritage comes from the world of high performance racing. You can see that reflected with the flat, tangle-free ribbon cable and the slotted bass port and curves of the aluminum housing earpiece.”

Siva's Reviews: Munitio SV

With so many great headphones and earphones out there to choose from, it can be a true challenge for any one company to break away from the pack and gain recognition. Add to that, that I am particularly critical of headphones and speakers and weigh my words carefully when offering my reviews of audio equipment, being raised the son of an audiophile myself. With the SVs, the detail-oriented team of professionals at Munitio have succeeded in not only impressing me, but also in taking high-end audio engineering to a whole new level.

Siva's Reviews: Munitio SV

Munitio Billets

The Munitio SVs may be some of the pricier earphones the company has to offer, but if $130.00 isn’t in your budget, do yourself a favor and check out their high quality Billets that will only cost you $70.00 and I’d say that even these lower priced models perform better than 75% of the earphones on the market today. On the other hand, if you are looking for some of the best earphones money can buy, be sure to take a gander at Munitio’s Nines ($170.00), which are their top of the line, premium sonic experience earphones.

Siva's Reviews: Munitio SV

Munitio Nines

Siva's Reviews: Munitio SV

Munitio Nines


Philips Shoqbox: The Extreme Adventurer’s Ultimate Boom Box!



Know anyone who likes to adventure, who loves the great outdoors or who is into roughing it? If you do, then you’ll want to bookmark this article about a great, ultra-rugged Bluetooth speaker from Philips.


Philips needs little introduction of course, as one of the pioneers and leaders in the world of hi-fidelity sound systems. Now the company that has for decades now, consistently raised the bar as to what we can expect high-quality audio reproduction to sound like, introduces to the world, the ultimate ruggedized portable Bluetooth speaker solution.

Siva's reviews: Philips Shoqbox Ruggedized Bluetooth Speaker


The Philips Shoqbox 7200 is a powerhouse of sound, packing 2, 4-watt neodymium drivers into a compact and super-sturdy structure that is both stylish and highly functional and durable. I was extremely impressed with the Philips Shoqbox. It has everything you could want in a rugged speaker and none of the things that you don’t want. It is drop-proof and shockproof and lightweight, measuring right at 7 inches by 3 inches. It is also splash proof, meaning that minor exposure to water won’t damage it, and if it did happen to fall in the water and become completely submerged for a brief moment, if all your port covers are sealed properly, your Shoqbox should theoretically be just fine.



I have to say, I haven’t done a full submersion test with the Shoqbox. I am simply defining what the term “splash proof” indicates in terms of a device’s waterproof-ness. For the more technically inclined, the Shoqbox’s protection level could also be described as meeting an IP-54 rating, with its superb protection from the ingress of objects, debris, dust and liquids.


Siva's reviews: Philips Shoqbox Ruggedized Bluetooth Speaker


The Shoqbox is also feature rich, and the only rugged Bluetooth speaker to integrate both gesture control and voice feedback into the device. The gesture control allows you to play and pause and skip tracks with simple, swiping hand motions, and the voice feedback will keep you informed of the battery level. The lithium battery is good to go for 8 solid hours of sound escapades between charges and, as if all that weren’t enough, it has a built-in microphone so that the speaker can be used as a speakerphone!


Like most small Bluetooth speakers, it can receive a signal up to 30 feet away from the source. The Shoqbox also comes with a 3.5mm line-in jack for the times when Bluetooth is unavailable. You can also connect two Shoqbox speakers wirelessly for amazingly crisp, clear and loud stereo sound.


When it comes to sound, this thunderous speaker will blow you away. It’s a fantastic speaker compared to all the other Bluetooth speakers in the market rugged or otherwise, so when you take into consideration it’s rugged durability, I’d say the Shoqbox has few rivals in the world of rugged Bluetooth speakers when it comes to toughness, sound quality or portability.


Siva's reviews: Philips Shoqbox Ruggedized Bluetooth Speaker


With its convenient carabineer bolt and dense rubber bumper surrounding the speaker’s grill, this speaker will keep up with even the most adventurous and extreme of us. Whether in the wild, the forest, the desert, the rainforest, the beach or the mountaintop, camping out, or even just for a family weekend picnic, the Shoqbox is one of the best portable and heavy-duty speaker options you will come across.


At this special time of year, it’s worth note that even if you personally don’t care for spending time out in nature, the Shoqbox would make a great holiday gift for any outdoorsy and adventurous souls in your life.


The Philips Shoqbox is available HERE for $180.00.

Satechi uCharger

Have you ever been frustrated because it takes so long to charge your devices with a
USB cable? Well, now we have Satechi uCharger to solve the problem. This diminutive high speed charger will restore your devices in about half the time.

All you do is plug it into a USB source and then plug your charging cable into the other end and let it do its thing. Your device will be charged in no time.

It is not recommended, however, that you use it in a hub. Plug it directly into a computer or AC adapter.

On the front, there is a single button. This is used to signal charging modes, which include blue for all devices except Galaxy Tab, red for all devices except iPad, and LED off for data transfer only, no charging.

It measures a mere 1.75 x 0.74 x 0.4 inches. The input Voltage  is DC 5V, output CD 5V, with an output current of 700mA-2100mA.

The list price is $15.99, but you can get them here for only $9.99: http://bit.ly/YzrGMU

You can have any color you like, as long as it’s white.

Mapi improves on Apple’s iPad SmartCase design, and brings it to the iPhone

I’ve written about Mapi’s iPad cases before, and I’m a fan of their materials and quality. They make cases for iPads that learn from Apple’s SmartCover concept and

Like Apple’s SmartCover, the flap folds in a triangle, to landscape mode, the phone is elevated about an inch and offers a great angle to view videos, on an airplane

X-Doria Mini iPad SmartJacket

One problem with protective cases can be that they are big and bulky; they add mass to an otherwise sleek device. However, that doesn’t have to be the “case”.  Let me introduce you to the X-Doria Smart Jacket for the iPad Mini.

It is slim, trim, and attractive. At the same time it offers perfectly adequate protection with a sturdy polycarbonate cover that securely snaps onto the iPad like a lobster shell. It will guard against impact and scratches.

The raised surface on the back adds further insulation and provides a surface for gripping and stability. In other words, it won’t slip out of your hands.

The flexible cover, while adding protection, also serves as a two-position stand when folded. It has built-in magnets that serve to wake up or put your device to sleep when opened and closed.

This multi-functional case offers great versatility for viewing movies, playing games, reading books, and surfing the Web. It makes it a perfect work station as well for some serious typing. Write your next novel on it.

You can get a whole wardrobe of SmartJacets as it comes in a choice of white, black, blue, and pink as a reasonable price of only $34.99. You can get one from the manufacturer here:


My only disappointment is that the case will not act as a stand in the portrait position. I hope this problem will be remedied in the next iteration.