Caudabe’s Veil XT is an iPhone case that focuses on simplicity & minimalism. One of the thinnest case in the market coming in at just 0.35 mm. The idea behind it is it’s a case for those who don’t necessarily want a case & appreciate the original form & function of the iPhone. This is what made it personally stand out to me. The Veil XT compared to the Veil model offers full coverage around all edges of the phone with exception of the front screen. Veil XT’s purpose is to protect the phone from scratches & minor falls. This isn’t your average case with reinforced material or shock protection again it’s purpose is to maintain the naked feel of the iPhone.
Veil Price: $13 USD (Affiliate)
Veil XT Price:$21 USD
The case is made for a variety of phones however in this review I’ll be examining the 6S & 6S Plus models.
Again the design on this case is minimal. A very light & thin plastic like material with a matte like finish. Personally I like the feel of the case however I could see it being prone to slipping for some. The Veil XT covers all of the iPhone’s edges neatly. All port cutouts are precise & flush. I had no issue accessing the volume rockers, sleep/wake button, or mute switch. Additionally the bottom ports which are covered in the XT model were all easily accessed as well. All 3.5 mm AUX/headphone connectors worked without any issue. The slim design of the case made it easy to plug in any cord without exception in my testing where as other cases tend to be a bit to thick for certain angled connectors. The lighting port & speaker grills are also aligned perfectly as to cause no issues.
Beyond that the branding on the case is kept to a minimal aspect as well with Caudabe logo subtly on the back. Personalization wise the case is offered in a variety of colors that add a great customization aspect to the case.
Further testing the case accommodated for what I’d call design oversights on the iPhone 6 models. The protruding camera lens for example is solved by a very thin lip added to the Veil XT evening out the phone. This comes at not detriment to the flash on the iPhone. All of this accomplished without adding more than 0.35mm to your iPhone.
Installation was fairly simple however it’s worth noting that case is very fragile. Taking your time is important & not using excessive force as it can lead to breaking the case. I noticed in my testing that the iPhone 6 models for some reason were much more difficult to take off compared to the bigger 6S Plus models of which there are no difference other than size. Other than that you simply slide the phone in starting from the bottom as recommended & snap your phone gently into place.
Fragile (Not meant for hot swapping)
Doesn’t offer front or full protection
Overall the Veil XT is a case that isn’t for everyone that much is certain. However Caudabe from what I’ve seen in their PR doesn’t shy away from this rather they own up to it. That’s something I personally respect, the case is meant for those who want the simplicity & original design on the iPhone while still getting minor protection against everyday damage. In my opinion a case should be unobtrusive in it’s design not hindering me from accessing my phone in anyway while also being protective to a certain level. The Veil XT in my case achieves all of that while being affordable & stylish in it’s simplicity.
I’d reccomend it to those who want to add some level of case/protection to their phone. A skin meets case design that can be added & forgot. For more information head over to Caudabe website or purchase the Veil XT or Veil case.
The iPhone 6S is Apple’s current flagship device. An “S” release that was debuted alongside the 6S Plus. The typical “S” upgrades mean faster, more advanced hardware, new features type of phone. The 6S packs all of that & more in the same design you’ll find on the 6. The only difference being the improved durability from the 7,000 series aluminum that makes the phone that much more stronger & less prone to bending/dents.
This review will break down my overall thoughts on the product & answer some of the major questions consumers may be posing such as what’s new & is it worth the upgrade?
The iPhone 6S features the following hardware
- A9 X CPU
- M9 Co-processor
- Retina 4.7 inch display (3D Touch Sensor)
- 16, 64, 128 GB variations
- Improved Touch ID Sensor
- 12-megapixel iSight Camera (720P 30 FPS, 1080P 30 FPS, 1080P 60 FPS, 4K 30 FPS)
- 5-megapixel FaceTime Camera
Price wise the 6S can range anywhere from $649-$849 depending on the model chosen.
The new A9/M9 CPU performs at outstanding speeds in everyday usage. Packaged with iOS 9 my experience with the 6S was efficient & it handled everything I threw at it. Despite my gripes with iOS 9 multitasking, gaming, and day to day use of the phone ran smoothly.
A noticeable difference in switching between apps & perhaps the most pivotal change in my opinion is the Touch-ID 2 sensor. This allows you get into your phone instantly, and I mean instantly. To the point where people have complained that you can’t just preview your lock screen unless you use your non Touch-ID finger. My personal favorite upgrade to the 6S it makes getting in & out of your phone secure but doesn’t at all compromise on efficiency.
What’s New in the 6S:
Aside from the obvious hardware upgrades & overall performance be it on benchmark testing or everyday usage here’s a look at some other things new in the 6S.
Camera- The updated camera more specifically the rear facing camera shoots amazing photos & videos. Still one of the easiest cameras to use, the iPhone has amazing quality with a very raw look to their photos. Great for those who like to edit their photos after the shot has been taken. Video wise you now have 1080P 60 FPS video (Sample Video) which is super fluid! Taking another step up you have 4K video at 30 FPS which is outstanding. While most people won’t shoot in this format it is an option. Additionally the Facetime camera features a software flash which has been overdue, and the new Live Photos feature. Essentially it makes a gif out your pictures recording a couple seconds before & after you take a picture. While its great to capture the moment surrounding a shot I honestly found myself just turning it off as I don’t use it all that often.
3D Touch– The 3D touch sensor within the screen allows for pressure sensitive based interaction. You can press deeper into the screen to get sub-menus to pop up as well as interact with certain items in iOS. This is what Apple calls peek & pop. While it seems gimmicky after spending time with the 6S you find yourself trying to force touch items on older iOS devices. The support isn’t all there across apps however the apps that do feature it make it that much more convenient to quickly access certain functionality. It’s a glimpse at how we’ll interact with iOS in the future & another control mechanism for apps. Certain gaming developers have already begun adding 3D touch based support to their apps.
These are the most noticeable differences aside from the already mentioned A9, M9 and Touch ID updated hardware in the phone. Though they’re slight additions to the phone if you use your camera on a daily basis (which I’m sure many iPhone users do) then its definitely a big difference. The 3D touch while a nice add on to iOS & the iPhone is still in its early stages. It’s not a selling point as of right to upgrade by itself much like Siri was or the camera upgrades on previous iPhones.
That said is it worth upgrading to the 6S? The phone itself is hands down one of the best smartphones out there without a doubt. However if your on last years 6 you can probably wait out this generation unless you simply just have the money to spend. Anything below an iPhone 6 then by all means the upgrade is 100% worth it. You get a phone while not different in looks except the new Rose Gold (Pink) color it comes in. Does pack a punch with its all new hardware. A faster and sleek device. For those who want the smaller screen size & portability coupled with speed the 6S is simply the best smartphone in that category. Backed by an amazing app store, iOS ecosystem, and hardware it’s the reason it’s the top selling phone for Apple & why their sales have reflected as such.
Are there better featured Android phones out there, certainly. However one thing I like about Apple is their patience to not rush out new features to appease the crowd. Rather they try to implement things when they feel they’ve near perfected it & made it such a seamless experience. This is shown in the Touch ID sensor, their camera & it’s software, the overall build of the device.
All in all the 6S is a great phone for most people, if you want a bigger screen sized iPhone than the 6S Plus is your best bet. For your other needs well there’s a phone for everyone but for iOS users and those looking to update their current iPhone line you can’t go wrong the 6S. Keeping in mind when I bought this phone along with the 6S Plus I was upgrading from an iPhone 5S. Which still to this day is one of my favorite iPhones. It was efficient for me and still is for most people but the significant jump from that to the 6S really showcased all that I was missing. The lighter & rounded form factor that is reminiscent of the earlier iPhones. From an engineering perspective I’m still amazed at the power they pack in year after year into these even thinner devices. A truly great device for all my day to day needs.
- The Camera hump on the back while aesthetically unpleasing didn’t bother me much case or no case.
- Rose Gold is more a soft pink
- Phenomenal Battery Life (Apple claims 9-10 hours) however in reality I get everyday usage out of it & for the most part I’m always within a chargers distance
- Touch-ID is crazy fast. Hands down my favorite sensor upgrade.
- 1080P 60 FPS… I use this more than I do my DSLR which is incapable of shooting in such a format.
In typical “S” upgrade fashion it’s a phone that is that much faster & better despite it’s external likeness to last years model. It’s Apples best phone in that its their latest. Faster, more durable, and packed with their latest OS & features. The iPhone is Apple’s baby & lead selling device & the iPhone 6S encompasses the exact reason why.
Klok is one of those gems you find in the app store now & again. For someone like me who has to deal with multiple timezones & be able to easily convert across them this app provides all of that in an elegant interface.
When you first download Klok you’ll be able to adjust all settings within the app itself. Here you can add clocks of timezones you want to view & manage. Additionally you have options to adjust what clock you want to see be it digital or analogue. However the app is truly built for iOS’s notification center. Swiping down from anywhere in iOS gives you access to your NC widgets. You can easily add in the Klok widget by hitting the “edit” button at the bottom. Once added in your presented with a simple & clean clock interface.
This at a glance shows you the time across your set clocks.
However taking it a step further you can then tap on any specific clock to then set a time to convert across all clocks. So lets say someone in the UK asks to schedule a call at 2:00 PM their time. You simply tap on your London clock & then tap on 2:00 PM this will then change all your set clocks to their local time so you know what time it’ll be when its 2 o’clock in London.
- Ease of Use
- Accessible anywhere via Notification Center
- Occasional bug with clock +1/-1 icon
- iOS only
All in all Klok is completely free & definitely worth the download if you deal with timezones at any capacity. Whether you want to know the time somewhere else in the world at a glance or be able to convert timezones on the fly. Grab it free for your iPhone today.
Instagram has released yet another app in the photo/video tool space to acommpany their social network. Previously they released Hyperlapse their stop motion tool & today they’ve released Layout. As the name entails its a photo collage based app, making it easy to upload multiple photos in one to your Instagram or across the web.
Focusing on simplicity & ease of use controls.
Download Layout for iOS (Coming for Android soon)
You can view our full video review down below:
The app in itself features a very simple interface thats easy to use & navigate. Compared to other layout based apps I’ve used it has the most inuitive design from swapping photos, adjusting sizes, and more. However it is lacking in some areas as well. To break down here are the pros/cons
- Simple Interface
- Instagram Friendly Resolutions
- Supports up to 9 Photos
- Built in Photo Booth
These line of apps have been something Instagram/Facebook has been focusing on to keep the tools & experience in-house. Rather than incorporating these features into Instagram they’ve made completley dedicated apps to solve these solutions then tie back into Instagram. As of now this will replace my default collage app based on the UI experience alone. Grab your copy for iOS today for free!
AnyTrans by iMobie is an all-in-one content manager for your iOS devices be it iPhone, iPods, or an iPad. Allowing you full control over your device & the ability to manage the media from the device to your computer and or vice versa. This is useful in a variety of situations from backing up data, importing content, and or bypassing traditional iTunes sync methods. The app handles all sorts of media from photos, video, contacts and more. Simply plug in the device & get a visual representation of the device & everything on it.
AnyTrans really spans across so many use cases. Let’s say your upgrading from an older device to a new one & want to migrate specific content or all of it over well AnyTrans can do just that. Have a device that iTunes won’t allow access to or allow import/export of media AnyTrans can handle that and the list goes on. It’s a great way to bypass & completely take over iTunes as a content manager and does so in a easy to use fashion.
The features covered include the following:
- Entertainment (Music, Podcasts, Photos, Videos, etc)
- iCloud Content
- Apps & Docs
- Personal Info ( SMS, Contacts, etc)
- File System (Disk Mode)
The best part about the content manager built into AnyTrans is that the interface is clean & simple. Plugging in the device shows you a overview of everything on it & from there you can sort through the media you want to control then choose the method of export. You have the option to move content to iTunes, your mac/pc, and even another device. Everything is visually showcased & easy to navigate and use depending on your needs. Additionally you have the ability to add in content & as well.
Getting back to the overview of the app & who’d exactly would want this covers a wide range of users.
If your looking to replace iTunes completely with something that skips the permissions & common syncing issues than this is for you. While on vacation I use the app to transfer music to my new iPhone that was previously synced with an old library & in order to achieve the same thing through iTunes I’d have to sync with my Macbook Air’s library essentially erasing all my data.
Extracting data, transferring between devices, backing up data and so on are all ways to use this as a content manager. The power really lies in what you want done with your iOS devices. Giving you back complete control & transfer rights to your devices.
Easy to use UI
Full System Control
Video Optimization Tool
N/A in my usage
Worth the Download
It gets my seal of approval & is certainly one of the best iOS content managers available. Allowing the user full control over their devices & the capability to manage the content as they see fit. At this price, its worth having ever in case you’ll need it down the road.
Download & purchase the app via the links below for either OS X or Windows. Each copy runs for about $40 USD with family licenses available for more.
OS X (aff)
(Originally filmed in December 2012 this review has been revised for my experience with the product up to this point)
Product Rating- 8.5/10
Mobee’s Magic Feet is a charging solution for your magic mouse, trackpad, and Apple wireless keyboard. The charging station uses specially designed rechargeable batteries in line with inductive based charging that can be wirelessly charge input devices on the docking station. Coupled with its sleek aluminum design the charging station nestles well on your desk or on your iMac base station. The advantage being that you can charge your input devices simultaneously without every having to replace batteries. The Magic feet also conveniently adds 4 extra USB ports with its built in hub making plugging in other devices an arms length away.
This all in one solution solves your dead battery issue while making it simple & convenient.
Breaking down the product into 3 categories. Design, functionality, and ease of use.
The Magic Feet is simply stunning in its design. Going along with the Apple aesthetic of an all aluminum base station. Magic Feet comes with a Magic Mouse battery pack, Apple Wireless/Trackpad battery pack & the base station itself. The station requires one power cord with a pretty big adapter thats interchangeable for specific regions & another mini USB cord to power the hub. The magic mouse charging station at the top can charge up to two mouses (battery packs sold separately) while the front end can mount either an Apple wireless keyboard or magic trackpad. To top it off the product is made of 100% recyclable material.
The main function of the Magic Feet is to charge. In my testing over extended period of usage the devices held up in great condition only requiring a charge after weeks of usage. In some cases the battery packs would lose connection but nothing a simple on/off couldn’t fix. Charging works efficiently & within an hours time can put great life into your mouse or keyboard. USB ports built into the Magic Feet also act as a convenient location for plugging in small devices such as pen drives, external drives, etc. Seeing as this is typically on your desk or in the front of your iMac its in the perfect location for usage. Charging the Apple Wireless keyboard on the station still allows for use while charging making it all the more convenient. On top of that you save on the cost of constantly replacing batteries for your input devices thus making the product that much more eco-friendly.
Ease of Use-
Mobee did a great job of making the Magic Feet simple to use & setup. Simply replace your old battery packs in the standard devices then set up your charging station & desired and charge when needed. The product features 3 LED lights that are red when the devices aren’t being charged, blinking green when charging, and solid green for a full charge. Allowing you to charge 2 Magic mice and an Apple wireless keyboard or trackpad. The overall design makes it easy to access all USB ports on the hub & charge devices neatly.
-Wireless Charging (Inductive based)
-Saves cost of traditional batteries
-Power Adapter Size
Overall the Mobee Magic Feet at its $150 price point really is a great charging solution to invest in. In the near 3 years I’ve been using the product the rechargeable batteries have remained reliable as ever. If anything I’ve made my money back in terms of savings regarding batteries that I tend to have to replace after prolong usage of each input device. Mobee also sells battery packs separately for you to purchase via their site if need be. Having multiple macs myself the convenience of being able to charge two mice at once really helps. As far as wireless charging stations go Mobee has hit the nail on the head with the Magic Feet. It really is a all in one solution for your Apple input devices. If your a mac user & more so a proponent of the Apple input devices than consider investing in the Mobee Magic Feet.