10 great gifts for iPhones and iPads

There's a host of accessories for iPhone and iPad owners -- this collection suggests just some of the solutions you'll find.

10 great gifts ios device users need

10 great gifts iOS device users need

There's no denying that the center of innovation is all around mobile at present -- from the devices themselves to the widening family of accessories, services and apps. Looking forward, the evolution of smart living and wearable technologies promises more of the same. Here's the AppleHolic's 2014 collection of interesting gifts for iPhone and iPad users.


Essential for BYOD people

Logitech has a rich history in making peripherals for Apple products and was quick to the scene when it came to creating keyboard accessories for iPads. The latest model weighs under 12 oz., boasts numerous handy function keys and magnetically connects to your tablet. Available for most iPad models.


The ultimate iPhotographer's kit

Sony's $350 accessory gives iPhotographers a powerful 10.1MP Exmor HD CMOS sensor, a 30x zoom lens, an ISO range of 100-1,600 and much, much more.

The Sony DSC QX30 system links up with your device and lets you shoot in one of two ways: 1. Attached to your phone and controlled by your device and 2. Remotely -- leave the camera on the tripod and grab the image using your device. There's an in-depth account here. For other photography gift ideas, read 8 tips for taking better photos.

harmony home

The real universal remote control

You've always wanted to control all your household devices using your iOS (or Android) device; now you can, thanks to Logitech's Harmony Home Hub, which costs $99.

Easy to set up, the solution features RF, IR, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth, and will control both living room and smarthome devices over the appropriate interconnect via an app on your phone (though do check compatibilty before you buy).Take a look at other connected home ideas here.


A bag for all seasons

PhorcePro is the perfect bag of tricks for mobile workers -- not only can it be transformed from a briefcase to a backpack, but it is also capable of recharging all your mobile devices and contains a host of accessory cables.

There's more: The bag connects to your iPhone using Bluetooth, so you can see how much power is left and (best of all) get a notification if you try to leave the bag behind (unless you've left your iPhone in it, of course). The catch? It costs hundreds of bucks -- $649, to be precise.


The best auto accessory

Automatic is a superb product for any car owner. Fit it to most modern car data ports and you get access to all the information collected by your vehicle's on-board computer -- that's great for fault diagnosis and repair and has other uses too, such as helping identify ways to improve your driving technique.

Currently, Automatic is only available in the U.S., but it has gotten rave reviews. "Automatic could do for driving what the iPod did for music," says CNBC. ($99.95, currently $79.95)


Smartphone scales are smart

Who doesn't want a weighing machine designed to work with all those apps on your smartphone, particularly now that you've also got HealthKit, which will -- inexorably -- remind you of how inactive you are and remove any and all excuses you may otherwise have made for your current corpulent condition?

OK, there's a biographical disclosure within that last statement, but this gadget measures weight, body fat, hydration and muscle and bone percentage and can help you help yourself health. It costs $64.99. Read this for more HealthKit kit ideas.


Smart celestial jukebox, AirHome

AirHome is a new to market AirPlay system that uses wired speakers placed strategically around your home which are then controlled from your Apple device, bringing the best possible music quality to every room in your home (for up to $699).

Of course, not everyone wants to wire speakers into their home. If that's you, then take a look at standalone AirPlay speakers such as those mentioned here.


Smart home? Smart lock

August is an iPhone-controlled door lock that lets you control who can and cannot enter your home, without using any keys. You get reports showing who enters your house and when -- a great way to keep an eye on the kids.

There are several smartphone-controlled door entry systems reaching shops this season, and while I'd urge early adopters to test the tech rigorously, I think we'll see these systems become commonplace in future smart homes. It costs $249. (More smart home ideas here).

amp speaker

iPhone audio gets better

Packed with interesting sounding audio technology, the Soundfocus Amp speaker system is a case that slides onto your phone to make it sound so much better, whether you use headphones, AirPlay or even make a phone call.

The case features two speakers, but its biggest audio playback secret is the software. You see, the system tests your hearing patterns, and monitors your environment to try to identify the best way to optimize audio for your needs. The aim of the exercise is to ensure music played through the system is specially tuned for your ears and surroundings. It's worth a listen. ($129, available for short time at $79).

apple tv

Are you ready for 4K?

Are you ready yet? Think on this: Recent revelations indicate the iPhone 6 chip is capable of 4K video output, which should set you to thinking. We've known for some time that Apple's been working toward some kind of adventure in 4K video. So what's the likely end game?

I imagine 4K movies for rent via iTunes, along with 4K video support on Apple TV. So it makes sense to begin to price out those 4K televisions if you're serious about TV and/or film. Should you jump? That depends on whether you believe the Apple Television rumors or not. Meanwhile, look out for those Samsung 4K TV discounts this Black Friday.

Google+? If you use social media and happen to be a Google+ user, why not join AppleHolic's Kool Aid Corner community and join the conversation as we pursue the spirit of the New Model Apple?

Got a story? Drop me a line via Twitter or in comments below and let me know. I'd like it if you chose to follow me on Twitter so I can let you know when fresh items are published here first on Computerworld.

Copyright © 2014 IDG Communications, Inc.

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