After Macworld / iWorld 2014 came to a close in San Francisco last Saturday, the AppleTell team sat around a tiny table at Uncle Vito’s discussing our favorite products of the show (and trying to figure out what what David has against sausage). In years past, we each had a clear winner, and sometimes had to fight over who claimed what. This year, that wasn’t the case. This is partially because there was plenty of competition, but also because there wasn’t a single product that completely blew any of us away. But after nearly a week of reflection and pouring through our notes, Kirk Hiner, David Temple and I have finally selected our favorite products of Macworld / iWorld 2014.
David Temple: Kamino for iOS
Go take a hike. No, really, go take a hike and post it to Kamino. Not only will this handy little app show what’s out there to be seen, you can add your own contribution as well.
The guys at Kamino have a philosophy along the lines of get out there and experience the world. In our society of digital devices and decreasing human interaction, it was refreshing to find an app that encourages people to get out of their homes and experience the world in person. You can pick an existing hike and find some neat things your neighbors have found, or you can post your own finds and share what you think is really interesting.
In speaking with Louis Huynh, President & CEO of Kamino Labs, he said this app is a way for the user to “share your perfect day.” I like that. I am guilty of staying inside a bit more than I should but this app is incentive to go out and see what points of interest may be hiding in plain sight. Show off your area and let us all know what’s cool around you. Start hiking and sharing.
Kamino is available now for free in the iTunes App Store.
Aaron Kraus: Petcube
Everything is going to be connected to the Internet of Things soon, so why not your pet? Petcube will let you peek in on your pet virtually, like a modern day Tamagotchi (hopefully minus the neglect and dead batteries).
The Petcube integrates a camera, speaker, and laser pointer so you can check on your pets, call them into the room where the Petcube is located, and use the laser pointer to give them exercise / watch them run in circles. I was surprised to find the Petcube integrated sharing features, but they’re actually pretty amazing. You can grant full access to your Petcube, which allows users to access it at anytime, or you can grant restricted-hours access so your friends/family can peek in on your pet during the day but can’t spy on you at night. You can even turn on full public sharing to anybody with the Petcube app, but that’s limited to 15 minutes.
The Internet’s about to get a whole lot more cat videos, because really, who doesn’t like more cats?
Petcube is available for preorder for $199.
Kirk Hiner: Sennheiser Momentum On-Ear Headphones
True story; despite all the headphones I’ve reviewed here at AppleTell, the pair I always go back to is a set of $50.00 KOSS PortaPro headphones I wrote up back in 2007. Because they’re so lightweight and the sound is so well-balanced, I can leave them on for half a workday without feeling any discomfort. I use them so much that I’ve three times had to order new pads from the company. After trying Sennheiser’s Momentum On-Ear Headphones, I think I’ll finally have to move the PortaPros to backup duty.
The Momentum headphones are very light, weighing a mere 160g including the remote. The earpads are covered with “luxurious Alcantara®,” as Sennheiser calls it, and filled with two layers of a special foam to provide a comfortable fit that doesn’t feel like it’s squeezing your ears in. You should be able to wear these for hours, and you’ll want to, considering how great the audio is. Even through the din of the show floor, the audio samples provided were clear and strong without overpowering you with bass. Whether sampling acoustic Jackson Browne or some thumping dance track by someone I didn’t bother to remember, the audio came through with clean separation and somewhat warm tones despite the digital source.
The Momentum headphones are available in seven eye-catching colors, all of which I’d feel just fine wearing. At their website, Sennheiser says, “MOMENTUM was designed not for those who follow fashion, but for those who define their own style. A triumph of substance over mere effect.” If that’s a subtle dig at Beats, it’s accurate and well-deserved. As I stated on Twitter after sampling these headphones, “When you outgrow your Beats, Sennheiser is ready.”
The Momentum on-ear headphones are available now for $199.95.