Mar 28

InnoPocket HexaPose iPad Stand

Last year I reviewed the HexaPose iPad Stand. I was – and am – a big fan; in fact, it’s still part of my daily iPad routine.

Or, more accurately, it was until the iPad 2 replaced its predecessor as my go-to tablet.  Which leads me to my point.

Mel from Ohio wrote in over the weekend regarding the iPad 2 and the HexaPose stand:

I have last year’s iPad and the Hexapose stand.  My iPad 2 is supposed to arrive in the middle of April.  Will the Hexapose work with the new iPad?

As you’ve probably surmised from my introduction, no – sadly, it won’t.  While the iPad 2 does fit inside the HexaPose’s iPad frame, the new tablet is smaller and thinner than the original, so it’s not very stable in the frame – and certainly not stable enough to use the stand’s rotation feature.

I contacted InnoPocket, the company behind the HexaPose, and asked whether there were plans to release an updated iPad 2 frame for the stand (the plastic iPad frame can be removed from the aluminum base, and is, therefore, technically upgradable); unfortunately, at this time, there is no definite plan to do so.

Plenty of iPad 2-specific stands will be coming out over the next few months, but right now if you need a stand, it’s best to go with a more generic-purpose model.  Some personal recommendations: the Twelve South Compass and the Griffin Tablet Stand.

I still think the HexaPose was one of the best 1st Gen iPad stands; I just hope it’ll be updated for the iPad 2.

BYA: You ask, we answer.

M. Nichols, Products Editor

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Mar 24

FlingThere are all sorts of games for the iPad and iPad 2, many of them employing the multi-touch screen for excellent control (Plants v. Zombies, Angry Birds).  But some games, mainly shooters, use directional pads or onscreen joysticks for control, and as beautiful as these games look on an iPad, controlling them with the screen alone leaves much to be desired.

But there’s an accessory designed to change all that:  Fling. Two Fling Controllers with an iPad 2

Made by Ten One Designs,  makers of the Pogo stylus, Fling is a physical joystick that translates your movements to the iPad’s screen.  You can use one or two Fling controllers – depending on the game – by simply attaching them to the iPad screen with the built-in suction cups.  Then you’re off to the races… or battling hoards of zombies. 

To each his own.

Here’s a list of games the Ten One Designs gurus say work (great or otherwise) with Fling.  If you’re already a user, lets us know what you think in the comments section.

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Mar 23

Apple iPad 2 Smart CoverMarch 23, 2011: When Apple introduced the iPad 2 earlier this month, much was made of the new Smart Covers [CHECK PRICES] the company had designed for their 2011 tablet. And there’s no doubt that much time went into the Smart Covers’ development, as the iPad 2 was built with the covers in mind.  They are arguably the most integrated cases ever released for a mobile device.

But how well do they work – and are they worth the respective $40 and $70 price tags? Let’s take a look.

Introduction

The iPad 2 Smart Covers are essentially screen protectors; they do nothing to protect the sides or rear of the tablet.  They can also be folded to serve as stands.  The Smart Cover consists of a magnetic bar used to attach to the iPad 2, a hinge that allows the cover to flip out of the way while connected, and four rigid panels with foldable seams between.  

The story of the Smart Cover can be told almost exclusively by describing its magnets.  A series of powerful magnets hold the cover to the left side of the iPad 2 (when in portrait mode), more magnets keep the cover in place over the screen, while yet another magnet puts the iPad 2 to sleep when the cover is closed and wakes it when opened.  Even more magnets hold the panels in a triangular shape when used as a stand or folded in half while you’re using the iPad.

Available Smart Cover Colors

The Smart Covers are available in ten colors, some with a polyurethane surface (gray to pink on the left above) and others with leather.  The polyurethane covers retail for $39, while the leather versions go for $69.

Continue reading »

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Mar 19

iPad 2 Skin Case

One frustrating aspect of buying the newest Apple gizmo is that fitted cases are, at launch, difficult to find.  Take your basic silicone skin case, for example; more than a week after the iPad 2 launch, finding one still seems like an exercise in futility…

Unless you have an eBay account. A few minutes on eBay and you’ll find a slew of skin cases for the iPad 2, precisely cut and ready to go.

And they’re affordable.  The skin case shown (to the left) goes for less than seven bucks and includes free shipping.  There are more than a hundred such cases available on the auction site this morning.

The downside?  Most of these already-ready iPad 2 cases ship from Asia, so you’ll have to wait a few days longer to get your hands on your purchase.  But with the first iPad 2 skin case on Amazon set to ship on April 8th, you’ll probably have an eBay skin covering your iPad 2 before Amazon can sell you one.

Browse iPad 2 Cases in the iPad 2 Accessories Center…

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Mar 11

This morning at approximately 2:40AM CST, Apple began accepting online orders for the iPad 2.  At that time, each iPad 2 model had a shipping estimate of 3-5 days, with free delivery estimates between March 18th and March 25th.

iPads Ordered Online Now Won't Ship Until Late March at the Earliest

But as of about an hour ago (10:00AM CST), shipping times for all iPad 2 models had been pushed back to 2-3 weeks.  So, if you order an iPad 2 from Apple’s online store now, even with overnight shipping, the earliest you can reasonably expect delivery is March 28th, and perhaps later – though Apple does have a history of shipping items earlier and later than advertised, which puts things even more in flux.

Apple has not announced how many iPad 2s they’ve sold online today since ordering began in the early morning hours, so we don’t know how many units were standing by for first shipments.  However, it’s quite possible that shipping times could be pushed back even further if online orders continue at the current rate.

If you don’t want to wait, you do have options.  You can begin purchasing the iPad 2 at local retail stores this afternoon at 5:00PM local time.  The Apple store will carry all iPad models, of course, as will (presumably) Wal-Mart, Best Buy and Target stores.  AT&T and Verizon will sell iPad 2 as well, though they may only offer the Wi-Fi + 3G models that work with their respective wireless data networks.  

Best Buy and Wal-Mart online stores will also sell the iPad 2, likely today at 5PM or shortly thereafter.   At present, the Best Buy site lists the iPad 2 as available in store only, and Wal-Mart’s online store has all iPad models listed as “Coming Soon.”

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