While we are still waiting for the iPhone's killer accessories to show up, this week sees a few items worth mentioning drop on our desks. We look at a stylish Bluetooth headset, a couple cases, and a couple cabling / connectivity adapters to round it all out. Belkin, Griffin or some clone outfit really has to kick an FM transmitter out into retail land -- unless you've see one working, and if so, please let us know! -- for our favorite iPhone, but until then, enjoy this week's goodies right after the break.
Bang & Olufsen EarSet 2
Bang & Olufsen are sitting comfortably on one of the top rungs of the design and price ladder for audio gear, so we jumped when given the chance to show this off. While not specifically an iPhone accessory, Apple has this bit of design glory on its iPhone site for a mere $349 -- and yes, it does lack "Works with iPhone" status, but, no biggie. The small boom microphone on the headset doubles as the power button, simply swinging it out turns the headset on and the reverse turns it off for when it's time to drop it in the hockey puck-styled charging base.
Weighing in at a barely-notice-it's-there 0.8 oz, supporting Bluetooth 1.2 headset and handsfree profiles, two noise isolating microphones, and rated at 3 hours talk and between 50 and 100 hours standby time, it most definitely has the headset bases covered. Ah, but what about call quality? Apparently the noise cancellation on the microphones worked so well, that B&O designers had to re-introduce some ambient noise -- of course the proof is in the pudding, and sadly we've no pudding to try as this is only a round-up. Suffice it to say, that if you have some spare change kicking around, you may want to at least pop into a shop to kick the tires a bit and decide for yourself.
Griffin PowerJolt Car Charger
Juice on the go is key with most toys, and the iPhone is definitely no exception. While we are waiting for some multi-purpose charger / other-nifty-function devices to arrive, Griffin's PowerJolt will fit the bill nicely.
Included in the kit is a USB to dock connector cable, a USB to mini-USB cable -- letting you charge other devices, how thoughtful -- and the charging adapter that pops into your lighter or accessory port in your car. As an extra, the charger has a built in fuse in case your car's system throws a fit and sends a spike your way. For $20 bucks, it seems a pretty useful add-on for your mobile toolkit.
Boxwave has a wide range of iPhone goodies from screen protectors to cases and even some screen wiping pads you can dangle off your keychain.
For $17 you can pick up the miniSync, a retractable charge and sync cable for your iPhone, a pocketable bit of handiness that can extend out to 36 inches. Available in either white or black, they are a definitely the thing if you choose to leave the original pack-in at home
OtterBox for iPhone
OtterBox make all manner of serious rigid cases and housings for devices and while this case is still a few months out, the concept is worthy of mention.
Designed to fit both 4 and 8GB iPhones, -- magical isn't it? -- the semi rigid case is a departure from the usual OtterBox fare as this case is a form fitting effort and not simply a hard plastic shell. Offering "3 layers of protection," all of the iPhone's buttons are said to be accessible though the case and a patented touch-screen membrane protects the screen without impeding use. Solid stuff, look to this to land in the next few months -- and hopefully in other colors.
DLO has a few new cases on the table, available in black or brown leather and a nylon version for those not so into the cowhide thing.
These straight forward belt mounted cases have an easy open flip-top plus a slot on the bottom to help you kick your handset out when a call rings through. The design protects the entire outer surface of the phone, so dropping it shouldn't be an issue. The headphone port is conveniently cutaway so you can stay plugged in while out and about, though the docking port is hidden and will force you to take the phone out of the case to charge or sync. While the leather case is pretty standard stuff, we are digging that nylon case's shiny look, and for only $29 dollars, it does seem a pretty good buy.