Posts made in October, 2012

Review: Simplism Flip Note Case for iPhone 5

Posted on Oct 22, 2012 in iPhone, Reviews

With all the reports of the iPhone 5 being more prone to scratches than its predecessors, a lot of people are looking for good cases. I’ve tried a few plastic-shell style cases, but none of them have been particularly great. In fact, a lot of them seem to be based on rumored specs, rather than the actual dimensions (they refer to ‘new iPhone 2012’ rather than ’iPhone 5’).

In contrast to other cases, the Simplism Flip Note style for iPhone 5 is a wallet-style case designed to fit your iPhone 5 perfectly. It has a plastic mould to hold your phone, a slim leather cover, and two pockets to store credit or business cards. The case is available in red, beige, tan and black.

Fit and finish

This case is really well made – the materials all feel great and it fits the new iPhone extremely precisely. There’s no overlap or gap along the edges, unlike some of the other cases I’ve seen so far.

The peach wood finish on the front adds a bit of tasteful trim to the elegant leather design and bears the stylish Simplism logo.

Usability

I usually prefer shell-style cases on my iPhones, so I was a bit hesitant to make the switch to a flip case. The iPhone is something you take out and use all the time, so any extra steps could potentially be a hassle. I had tried a pouch-style case on my iPhone 4, where you could pull the iPhone out, but quickly gave up on it since it proved to be quite annoying to pull your iPhone out every time.

So how did the Simplism Flip Note fare?
The flip turns out to be quite convenient in everyday use. Your iPhone is really protected from bumps and scratches, but you can easily flip open the cover to use it with one hand.

The back cover actually bends in the middle in order to act as a stand (more on that later), which also makes it comfortable to hold the iPhone with both hands whilst typing. Your right hand can hold the iPhone between the plastic shell and leather flap for easy typing.

It’s a little bit unwieldy when you hold it up to your head for phone calls, but since I tend to use the headset that’s not really much of an issue for me personally.

It’s worth noting that the flip opens to the right rather then to the left. That takes a few moments to get used to, since most books tend to open the other way, but after the first few tries it feels quite natural.
Update: Simplism have clarified that the case opens to the right so you can access the iPhone buttons on the left — makes sense!

Other features

As mentioned above, the back of the Flip Note can fold over, allowing you to use the case as a convenient stand. This works quite well in practise and is useful for FaceTime, watching movies or TV shows (as seen here with our tizi+ digital TV receiver for iPhone and iPad).

The Flip Note also comes with a handy cable clip.

Conclusion

This is the a great case for the iPhone 5 and one of the first truly elegant cases that complement the new design. It offers easy access to all ports, protects your new iPhone perfectly and is practical in everyday use as well.

I’ve found it great when going out as I can store my bank cards and a few notes in the case with my iPhone and don’t need a bulky wallet.

Overall: Recommended

Shop for Simplism Flip Note for iPhone 5 on Amazon.

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Lightning wirecutters

Posted on Oct 5, 2012 in iPhone, Opinions

“Snips by Flickr user Sarae

When iOS 5 introduced wireless syncing, many people stopped connecting their iOS devices to their PCs and Macs altogether. But the dock connector and 30-pin accessories have meant that docking solutions have remained very popular for other accessories such as speaker docks, car connectors and other accessories.

Products like tizi and tizi+ started a trend of wi-fi based accessories and Apple’s continuing improvements to AirPlay and the slowly growing number of AirPlay devices have increased that trend. However the additional cost and slightly unfamiliar setup have meant that simple docking accessories have still been far more popular overall.

However the new lightning connector seems set to introduce a tectonic shift in favour of wireless accessories and audio devices: most users will be unwilling to invest in 30-pin accessories that are now seen as “legacy” or “outdated” technology (despite Apple’s insistence that they will support both connector technologies for some time).
At the same time, there will be many households that have 30-pin AND lightning-based devices (e.g. a new iPad and iPhone 5), so switching to lightning connector-only devices isn’t an option either.

Already the number of bluetooth-based AD2P-compatible devices seems to be increasing and manufacturers with wi-fi or bluetooth-based accessories and know-how will have an advantage for the foreseeable future. Newer standards like AirPlay and Bluetooth 4.0 will make these new accessories easier and more efficient to use, which should improve ease of adoption.

The lightning connector will push consumers towards wireless accessory standards. I for one welcome our new wireless future: the ubiquitousness of accessories like tizi+ on my home wireless network is far more convenient than conventional 30-pin accessories, so let’s hope we can cut some more wires in the next few years.

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