Cell Phone Accessories Chargers/Batteries

Soso beats the so-so option of separate cases and chargers

Cases and chargers are must-have accessories for smartphones and tablets. Having one product that performs both functions, therefore, would be convenient for many consumers. In addition to eliminating the need to buy two separate products, it would eliminate the need to schlep around two separate products.

patent-claimedSoso provides exactly that solution. It’s both a patented device case and charger for mobile devices. Soso comes in multiple form factors to fit Apple devices, and looks like a standard case. But built into the back of the cover is a charging cable that easily peels off when needed and quickly folds back in place when not needed.

Soso ships in July at future pricing of $30 for a version that works with the iPhone 6 and 6 S, $35 for the 6 Plus and 6 S Plus, $39 for iPad mini, $49 for iPad Air, and $59 for iPad Pro. But early bird Indiegogo backers can get them for pledges of $15, $20, $25, $30 and $35, respectively. The cases for iPads also serve as tablet stands. Soso’s makers hope to raise $25,000 by April 8.

This is a handy device for iOS device owners. Support for Android devices would obviously open it up to a much wider audience.


Cell Phone Accessories Imaging

olloclip Studio case creates a photo accessory rig for your iPhone

How far can one take smartphone imaging? Each of the many accessories that are available to improve the standard output of their integrated cameras compromises their portability either with more stuff to manage or by making for an awkward group of phone appendages that must often be treated gingerly.

olloclip is familiar with this scenario. The company that created a Kickstarter stir in 2013 with a series of smartphone lenses. It has since come out with a new version for the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus that includes a small holster to encourage taking the accessories along. Paving the way for much more than lens add-ons, though, the olloclip Studio “mobile photography system” begins with the rare protective case that can accommodate the olloclip lenses and a grip for steading the iPhone.

Arts Tablet Accessories

Sketchmi lets younguns sketch whatever on their tablets

Many artists have switched over to the tech side of things to become graphic designers. They use software and computers to make art. Still, many would prefer to have the convenience of technology, while still using good old fashioned pen and paper.

Sketchmi brings these two worlds together. This product is essentially a tablet case that’s most compatible with the iPad mini, iPad 2 and iPad 3, though it may still work with other models. To use, simply place on the tablet like a case. Add a sheet of paper over the screen to use for tracing a cool picture found on the Internet or from a personal photo library.

Cell Phone Accessories

Nexpaq modular phone case lets you easily snap in new gadgets

Once upon a time in the early days of PCs, enthusiasts customized their desktop machines with a wide range of different hardware — optical and hard drives, sound and graphics cards, and a range of monitors, keyboards and mice.

That spirit of customization lives on mostly in the world of high-performance videogame enthusiasts, but it’s mostly passed on as we’ve adopted tightly integrated laptops, tablets and phones that often have little or no expansion capability. Nexpaq, though, is seeking to bring customization into a new era with a case that can accommodate a wide range of modules, many of which communicate with the phones via Bluetooth. Up to six modules can be installed at any time and they’re all compatible with both iOS and Android.

The range of modules include breath alcohol, temperature/humidity and air quality analyzers, an amplified speaker, a laser pointer, two hot keys (to trigger events on the phone) an extra battery (in addition to one built into the case),  n SD card reader, and up to 4 GB of extra flash or a USB drive. Cases work with either the iPhone 6, Galaxy S6 or the S6 Edge. Nexpaq is seeking $50,000 on Kickstarter by May 30th. A case and four modules is available for $109 and is due to ship in November

Nexpaq has something for everyone, but it’s not enough for everyone to want something.  Unlike slow-burn projects such as Google’s Project Ara, the Nexpaq case allows people to keep their popular phones. But it also raises the bar on the level of components that must be offered by Nexpaq and others it hopes to attract to justify the elimination of their phones’ slim profiles. Without a killer module, Nexpaq will have to count on pocket pack rats who wnat a range of relatively obscure accessories at the ready.

Tech Accessories

Brik Case makes customizing MacBooks a snap

Many laptop users like to personalize the tops of their computers, a fun activity often accomplished with stickers. Laptop users, however, may get tired of previously chosen designs. Not helping matters is that many stickers can be extremely hard to fully remove.

The Brik Case offers a novel way for users to more easily customize their laptop. The Brik Case is a customizable laptop case that uses toy bricks which allow users to constantly change the design of their case. The Brik Case was conveniently designed to easily clip on and off MacBook Pros and MacBook Airs, so long as they were manufactured in 2013 or later. Notably, the case isn’t officially licensed by Lego, Mega Bloks, PixelBlocks, Kre-O or K’Nex. Nonetheless, the Brik Case is still compatible with all of those toy bricks. Its maker is planning to ship the case in August with $39.99 pricepoint. Its makers are hoping to raise $30,000 to help pay for the molds, packaging, engineers and the first order of Brik Cases. The campaign end date is slated for April 25.

The Brik Case hold a lot of promise, albeit for a very niche audience: MacBook users who are fans of Lego and other toy bricks. Making a version for Windows PCs would be an obvious move that could significantly expand the market for the case. The product’s Kickstarter campaign, however, makes no mention of such plans in the future.

Chargers/Batteries Imaging

SunnyBAG action case stores GoPro and charges it with solar energy

Any extreme daredevil knows that the best way to capture cool stunts is to use a GoPro camera. These cameras’ durability and versatility make them perfect to take to rivers, mountains, cliffs, jungles or any other daredevil-y place.

Up until now, GoPro cases have been rather lame compared to the cameras themselves. Introducing SunnyBAG: a GoPro case that not only protects these cameras wherever they may go, but also charges them. The case is covered with solar panels that soak up rays, turning them into battery life for the GoPro. In addition, the case can also charge smartphones, tablets, Google Glass, smartwatches and any other USB compatible device.

While the charging time for devices supported by SunnyBAG may be on the longer side, this case is still very interesting. It’s ideal for thrill seekers who spend the whole day on the move looking for the next piece of action. Backers can have their very own by April 2015 for $89, if SunnyBAG can meet its $30,000 goal on Indiegogo.

Chargers/Batteries Organization

TekTuk keeps mobiles safe from sleepy feet

Finding a convenient place to charge mobile devices that keeps them off the floor and free from the risk of getting stepped on can be a challenge, especially when traveling. TekTuk offers a way to keep mobiles bedside while still getting charged and in a safe place. The top portion of the leather carrying case fits between the mattress and box spring to keep mobile devices off of the floor. It will hold most tablets (up to 11” wide and 1” thick) and mobile phones (up to 3 ¼” wide, 1” thick) in their cases.

If backers can avoid knocking into the TekTuk during the night, this may be a good solution for mobile protection. The elastic cord management loops seem like a nice touch for keeping wires tangle-free and easily accessible as well. Backers might also want to check out the Z-charge, and ReelJuice  campaigns. This campaign seeks to raise $3,000 by December 8, 2014. Early bird backers get one product for $35, with an expected delivery of December 2014.

Cell Phone Accessories Chargers/Batteries

iPhone 6 charging case integrates stand, USB cable

As battery life still hasn’t caught up with the amount we use our phones, we need to be constantly prepared to charge our phones, even when we’re not at home. The Charge Case was designed to serve several important functions for iPhone 6 users. It’s a lightweight black case that will protect your phone. Charge is also a stand that lets you prop up your phone horizontally or vertically. Lastly, it comes with an attached lightning cable so you can charge or sync your phone anywhere. The cable fits discreetly inside the case.

We’ve seen a ton of portable chargers recently, including inCharge, a lightning cable keychain. Charge Case serves several functions, setting it apart from similar products. As with other portable cables, it’s too bad that it can’t also come with some kind of wall outlet. Still, if you have your laptop with you, this case makes charging, protecting and propping up easy. One will cost backers $35 for estimated delivery in March 2015. Charge Case is looking to raise a modest $5,000 on Kickstarter.

Tech Accessories

Mous Musicase docks earbuds in an iPhone case

We all spend tons of time try to detangle our earbuds. What may feel like half a lifetime of wasted time is being tackled by Mous Musicase. The plastic mobile phone case has a built in system that allows earbud wires to be unrolled when ready for use, and then retracted when it’s time to put them away. The wires stay consistently attached to the phone until the user disconnects them.

Currently, this product is only compatible with iPhone 5, but if the campaign does well, iPhone 6 will be included. It looks like the case is only compatible with one type of earbuds, which may be difficult for backers who go through a lot of earbuds with little brand loyalty. Backers who don’t have iPhone 5 and are looking for a potential way to keep their earbud wires from tangling might want to check out the MagClip campaign. This campaign seeks to raise £10,000 (~$15,700) by December 8, 2014. For £17 (~$27), backers get one product with an expected delivery of December 2014.

Tablet Accessories

Amp gives your iPad Air audio muscle for a mini-home theater

Tablets have really distinguished themselves in the market as cross laptops/smartphones with tons of capabilities in a portable package. As such, there’s lots they can do, but their potential isn’t always met with lots of insufficient accessories. Now the Amp aims to harness the power of the iPad Air and iPad Air 2. This durable tablet case also functions as high quality Bluetooth speakers that work with music, movies and TV shows and as a stand to prop it all up. The tablet snaps in and out of place easily. When the tablet is disconnected, Amp works just like any other Bluetooth speaker system, compatible with smartphones. All folded up, the case is discreet and durable, so the speakers can easily be carried around everywhere. Amp is a well thought out addition to the tablet accessory market and not only offers great function as a speaker system, but also as protection for your iPad Air. It’s a shame it doesn’t work with other tablets, but surely Amp will consider adding more models to its repertoire in the future. One will cost backers $199 by February 2015. Amp is looking to raise $50,000 with the help of Kickstarter.