A large number of iPhone and iPad accessories and apps were announced at the Consumer Electronic Show (CES) a few weeks ago (see my posts 1, 2, 3, 4). I am currently trying out some of those new products and will post about them soon. Over the last few days, the Macworld Expo was held in San Francisco, and a number of new iPhone/iPad products were announced and demonstrated. Macworld magazine selected a number of Best of Show winners — most of which were for the Mac, but a few were for the iPhone and iPad. Beatweek also selected its favorite products at Macworld, and the website 148Apps announced the 2010 Best App Ever Awards at Macworld Expo. Here are some of the products voted "best" that struck me as potentially attractive for iPhone J.D. readers:
BusyToDo. This is an iPhone to-do list app that syncs with BusyCal or iCal on the Mac. I haven't tried it myself, but it appears to have a clean interface and lots of features. You can get more info on the program by going here on the developer's website. Click here for BusyToDo ($0.99):
iRest Tablet Stand. This $49.90 device raises an iPad at an angle for when you are using your iPad on your lap or on a table. Roman Loyola of Macworld says that it features "foam cushions for resting the stand on your lap, and a torque hinge that allows you to adjust the angle."
myTrek. This item, which doesn't even show up yet on the Scosche website, is a heart rate monitor that uses Bluetooth to talk to the upcoming myTrek app on your iPhone to help your manage your training.
Fling. This device adds a joystick to your iPad. It attaches to the iPad's screen with small suction cups and works with about 100 games that have virtual on-screen joysticks. I rarely play these sorts of games on my iPad, in part because the touch controls are a little awkward, and I can imagine that for the right game this could be a big help. They cost $20 each or you can get a pair for $30, for those games that have virtual joysticks on both the the left and right of the screen.
Pocket Informant. I know that a lot of people swear by the Getting Things Done strategy for task management pioneered by David Allen, although I haven't tried the system myself. This app includes a calendar and a task list to help you get things done using Allen's GTD methods. Click here for Pocket Informant for iPhone ($4.99): Click here for Pocket Informant for iPad ($6.99):
ZAGGmate with keyboard. This $99.99 hard aluminum iPad case matches the iPad, props the iPad up an an angle, and includes a keyboard that talks to the iPad via Bluetooth. When I travel, I find it very useful to use a Bluetooth keyboard for typing longer e-mail messages, editing documents, etc. I can imagine the advantage of having a keyboard built-in to the case.
FastMac Impact Shield iPhone 4 case. If you need extreme protection for your iPhone, this might be the case for you. As Beatweek says: "Made of super thin rubber-like material, it appears to be just another (very thin) iPhone case. But start whacking the material with a hammer, as the FastMac folks loved doing at their Macworld 2011 booth this week, and you realize that the Impact Shield is nearly indestructible." I don't see a price for the iPhone version, but I see on the website that there is also a version for the iPad for $39.95.
Angry Birds. The game won 148Apps's overall award for Best App Ever. My review of the iPhone version is here, but having now played this game on the iPhone, iPad and my 27" iMac, I think that the best version is the iPad version. Click here for Angry Birds ($0.99): Click here for Angry Birds HD for iPad ($4.99):
Camera+. This utility won 148App's Best Visual Design and Best Photography App categories. My review is here. The app was removed from the App Store because Apple didn't like the use of the volume button to snap a picture, but it is now back with that feature removed and other new features. Click here for Camera+ ($1.99):
Shop Savvy Barcode Scanner. This app, which won 148App's Best Use of iOS Hardware category, let's you scan a barcode and then tells you where you can get the item for cheaper. Click here for Shop Savvy Barcode Scanner (free):
IMDb. This app won 148App's Best Reference App category for the iPad. I use it all the time on my iPhone or iPad (I especially love the iPad version) when I am watching a movie or TV show at home and i find myself wondering about an actor in the show or other information related to the show. Click here for IMDb (free):
FlightTrack Pro. I keep hearing good things about this travel app which won the 148App Best Travel App category for the iPad. It syncs with Tripit for those who use that service, it includes maps and even works in an offline mode so you can see the location of your airplane while you are flying (as estimated by the app), and it has real-time status updates for gates, delays and cancellations. There is also a non-pro version for half the price that doesn't sync with Tripit, lacks push alerts for flight updates, and doesn't include maps of airports. I haven't yet tried this app myself, but hope to do so soon. Click here for FlightTrack ($4.99): Click here for FlightTrack Pro ($9.99):