Check out this cool Video from
Rene Ritchie 🙂
Check out this cool Video from
Rene Ritchie 🙂
I have plenty of headphones that let me shut out the world, but that’s not always convenient. So now when I want to have a sound track of my life playing while I’m out and about I grab my Motorola HX550.
The HX 550 has got to be the easiest Bluetooth headphone earpiece configuration I’ve ever had connecting a device. By simply flipping open the earpiece, and putting it into your ear start the setup process begins and the earpiece tells you to go into your phone settings and go to Bluetooth. Once you do you’ll see the HX550 headset listed there. Tap On it and it automatically syncs up. Connecting the second device is a little trickier because you have to turn the first phone and then do the process again for the 2nd.
The HX 550 is an amazing earpiece with the ability to support two devices via Bluetooth. I have my iPad mini connected as well as my iPhone. So here is the scenario, I can start music/audio book/podcast playing with my iPad mini into my ear piece, then when I hop into my car I connect my mini to my stereo via a cassette adapter cutting off the audio to earpiece.
Then my earpiece becomes available to use as a traditional Bluetooth. Another nice feature is when a call comes the headset reads the caller ID to me and I can tap the button to answer. Once I arrive to my destination I disconnect the car adapter and then resume playing the content via the earpiece and since it’s only in once ear I have my other ear to pay attention to what’s going on in the real world.
The HX550 also features two microphones one in the back for noise canceling, and of course the forward microphone for your voice.
In fact I used the HX550 to dictate this review into my mini while I’m driving down the interstate headed into the studios. Obviously I’ll need to do some editing once I get to my desk but I can quickly do a brain dump of what it is that I want to talk about inside of my article so I don’t forget anything.
A coworker and I are constantly talk about we are really living in ‘the future’ we grew up with. It’s going to be incredible to see what children born with this kind of technology available to them today are going to come up with. What amazing things could be coming in another 10 to 15 years.
Dictation to digital assistants with the ability to edit as well. It’s all going to be so crazy cool I already can’t wait to get my Pebble watch, and now with my Bluetooth headphones I am literally going be connected on all kinds of different ways to the web.
To prove how great these HX550 are I did this dictation while driving in my car listening to the radio and my window cracked little bit. So I’ve got all kinds of noise,and what should be interference coming through and yet this was still able to pick up my voice with a pretty decent dictation. I have not had any other headphone that talk to me!
The HX550 comes with several different ear hooks and pieces to try and insure a style that will work for a variety of individuals. This has got to be one of the lightest pieces of technology I’ve ever owned, it is very light weight at 9g, in fact we picked up one for Matt and it’s so comfortable he’s fallen asleep with it in his ear, forgetting that he’s got it on.
In conclusion if you want to have music everywhere you go with the ability to still hear the outside world, the Motorola HX550 is defiantly worth investigation.
When you don’t need the clips just slide them out of the way and they add little to no weight or bulk to your device. You do need to stick on the non-slip rubber stopper unless you use a Smart Case, I’m not thrilled about that. However, on the mini it’s kind of a welcome addition as it doubles as a grip.
You can pick up the Smarter Stand at SmarterStand.com Right now there is a special when for the price of two you get three clips for $14.99. You can use the third as a backup, or like us, you can order two and you end up with 3 sets. As any good retailer for the holidays they are offering 15% off a purchase of 3 or more when you use the code HOLIDAYS15 at check out.
If you are a child of the 80s or a fan of the cartoons from the time, you should check out He-Man – The Most Powerful Game in the Universe on the iPad. It seems to skip the recent reboot elements and focuses on the art direction from the original. The art is updated but it has the feel of the original.
Part RPG and Part side scroller, you can upgrade and purchase different power-ups to help you get He-Man through the levels. While the game over all is fun, and a better than average side scroller with some nifty little tricks they pull to keep it interesting like the background protecting you from falling items until they get hit and collapse themselves.
However the game is held back by an annoying control system. The left side of the screen is for scrolling left and right and the right part of the screen is for button mashing and jumping. It makes me long for a real game controller so I can really kick-it in the game because right now I can’t get a fine enough control to try and work my way through some of the levels like I could if I had a real controller in hand.
I tried using the ‘Fling’ and it helped a bit with the left – right movement but the jumping was out of the question, I had to remove the right stick because the jump requires more of a swipe.
As you go through the game you can collect ‘lore’ tokens that unlock different pieces of art and bio information. I was able to unlock a piece of ‘production art’ that really looks like a throw back to the 80s toy art that I fondly remember as a child.
There are 7 areas of the map to unlock (27 levels total) and currently I’m in the second stage ‘Snake Mountain’ while I work my way across Eternia towards Castle Grayskull. There is enough fun in the game that I’ll work my way across and there might be some re-play value as they have some ‘Angry Bird’ type scoring for each level and I really like the idea of getting as many stars for each level I can.
All in all if you don’t get annoyed by the controls the game is pretty fun. I’m anxious to see all the different characters and I love the style they’ve selected. Even watching the game credits has fun by having He-Man run through some of the different elements you’ll see and experience while playing the game.
He-Man: The Most Powerful Game in the Universe is $.99 and available for iOS
The iPad is a great piece of hardware and if you own one you have probably wanted to prop it up at some point so that you don’t have to hold it in you hand. Perhaps you are currently folding the Smart Cover back on itself to create a stand, as it is designed to. That works but the inside of the cover, the part that touches the screen, gets dirty very easily…especially when used in the kitchen. If you are considering purchasing a stand for your iPad the UpStand may well be just what you are looking for.
Designed by Just Mobile, who make a range of stylish accessories for mobile devices, the UpStand is precision engineered with a brushed aluminium finish making it look and feel very Mac-like. With the iPad in place it looks like a little iMac and is the perfect match for the Apple wireless keyboard.
The two small supports upon which the iPad stands are quite deep providing ample room for an iPad 1 or an iPad 2 with a Smart Cover attached. Instead of making the stand the exact depth as the iPad so as to make a snug fit, the UpStand makes use of thin rubber inlays to firmly grip and support the iPad.
The rubber fittings not only protect the bottom of the iPad where it rests on these two supports but there is also rubber on all surfaces that touch the iPad preventing the back of the device from being scratched. You can feel at ease just grabbing the iPad, turning 90 degrees and plonking back on the stand without any concern of it touching the aluminium of the stand. Once in the stand the rubber grips hold of the iPad tightly, allowing the screen and stand to be twisted left or right as if they are one. The iPad and stand can be confidently picked up and moved with one hand without fear of the two coming apart. A ring of rubber on the base also protects the surface the stand is placed on and prevents the UpStand from sliding about.
The position of the iPad when in the stand is high enough above the desk to allow the connector cable to be plugged in while in Portrait mode so that it can be charged while in the stand.
One aspect that may cause hesitation in some buyers is that the UpStand is not adjustable, so the angle of the screen cannot be tilted up or down. However, the angle is such that I’ve found no need to alter it in the experiments I have carried out using the stand in a variety of different scenarios, whether placed in portrait or landscape position.
The fact that the stand is a fixed solid piece and not adjustable actually adds to it’s sturdiness and could therefore be considered as a positive. The Home button, for example, can be confidently pressed without fear of the stand falling over. Surprisingly, this is true not only when the iPad is positioned upright in portrait fashion when the Home button positioned at the bottom, but also when placed in landscape position, with the Home button on the side.
Being non-adjustable does mean that the UpStand is not able to be folded up to be carried around with you, though it can be disassembled via two screws to take up less room if packed in a bag for travelling.
The UpStand may seem a little bit pricy at $70 but is ideal for those who are looking for a stand that is both stylish and functional. For anyone who already has the Apple wireless keyboard and an iPad this is the perfect match. With it’s precision engineered grade brushed aluminium the UpStand turns your iPad into a real iMac-like workstation.
…or should I say, UpStanding!
The UpStand can be ordered from the Just Mobile website.