Well, it’s the holidays already – the time of gift-giving! Now that Apple has sold over 500 million iPhones, you’ll easily be able to find someone that fancy’s a gift to accompany their pride and joy. Or… you know… and don’t tell anyone we said this, but you could just treat yourself. Either way, we’ve compiled a list of the best, and the rest when it comes to essential and everyday iPhone accessories.
No more trawling through Amazon reviews! We’ve got you covered.
Note: All prices are accurate at time of writing, but due to fluctuate.
1. iPhone Case
A decent iPhone case straddles the line between aesthetics and protection – you want your phone covered, but you don’t want any bulk completely ruining the iPhone design’s appealing design.
Magpul Field Case – $17
Considering many of you will have already upgraded, be thinking about it, or about to take the plunge via the excuse of Christmas – we’ve picked a great iPhone 6 case: the Magpul Field Case.
The great thing about it is it sits somewhere inbetween levels of protection. If your paranoia about smashed screens and scuffs stretches further than a basic case, but you’re not an extreme sports enthusiasts, the Magpul is a great quality – and perfectly-priced – case. The case is ribbed for greater grip, while the material allows it to slide in and out of pockets easily.
Also – if you’re sticking with the iPhone 5 or 5s – then you can pick up Magpul Field Case for less than $12 on Amazon.
Incipio NGP: Looking for something a little more sheer? Then give the slimmer NGP a bash for only $14. [Get it!]
Speck CandyShell: It’s a bit more expensive ($21), but the CandyShell only adds 0.16 inches, despite its shock-absorbing inner-lining. [Get it!]
2. Battery pack for travelling
There’s two approaches to external power, really. The first is when you’re away from power for longer periods of time, such as at the airport, at a music festival, on holiday – or in remote areas. The second is for everyday use. If you’re a heavy user, you may want a smaller, compact, or even case-based solution. For the former – you can’t go wrong with this pack.
Anker 2nd Gen Astro E4 – $30
More details at iAnker.com
Get it from Amazon
The Anker 2nd Gen Astro E4 claims device detection to deliver faster charge up to 3 amps. It can recharge an iPad Air once, but an iPhone 5s close to six times before it needs recharging itself.
Even better, it’s currently priced at only $30 – so you’re going to want to snap it up if you’re after some portable power.
Intocircuit Power Bank: Also duel-ported, the Intocircuit pack doesn’t claim quite the mAh at 11200, to the Anker’s 13000 – but it is a tad cheaper, and has a nice LCD interface and built-in flashlight. [Get it!]
3. Battery Pack for everday use
We’ve covered the portable power packs that can charge more than one device, or are designed for multiple charges. But what if you’re a heavy user and your iPhone battery simply won’t make it through the day? This is were the ultra-portal USB charges come in.
Limefuel Blast L60X – $30
The Limefuel Blast L60X is slight enough to fit in the pocket, and is one of the few that will charge your phone both fully, and at speed. It does this by using a 1.8 A USB port – which should charge at the speed a normal plug will.
Poweradd Pilot X1: With a 5200 mAh capacity, it comes in just under the L60X’s 6000, but it’s still super-lightweight and will fill an iPhone at least to full charge. [Get it!]
4. Lightning cable
Apple’s official products are reputed for their price points. They’re not the cheapest products on the market, but since when were you paying fifty bucks for an iPhone, right?
Monoprice 3ft. Lightning cable – $12
Get it from Monoprice
Get it from Amazon
What if we were to tell you could buy a Lightning cable that is MFi (Made For iPhone) with a build and speed on par, if not better than Apple’s? Well there’s plenty of good things said about Monoprice’s cables, which generally gain five-star reviews online. Even better, they’re the only cable that’s actually thinner than Apple’s official one.
Lightning cables might not be the most exciting gift, but at this price you can get it as a bonus gift, or stocking filler. Or you know, just stock up on yourself – at $12 you’re barely even treating yourself!
Anker Lightning to USB Cable 3ft: Anker is well known in the charging game, also MFi, and reputable – $10 at time of writing. [Get it!]
dodocool 2-in-1 Lightning & Micro USB: If you have multiple devices, some of which might be non-Apple, try this MFi cable to get the best of both worlds – $19 at time of writing. [Get it!]
5. Best budget in-ear headphones for the iPhone
There are plenty of headphones our there that claim to be decent, budget options – and while more often than not, the sound quality is perfectly adequate with any reconizable brand, build quality varies wildly.
Panasonic RP-TCM125 Ergo Fit – $20
Get it from Panasonic
Get it from Amazon
Headphones also vary wildly in price, making it even harder to decide what level to start at. Well, don’t despair – based on price, features, and sound quality – you’ll be happy with a pair of RP-TCM125s. It also includes a microphone and single-button remote to control audio and use your phone to make handsfree calls. The reason this model has been getting such great reviews online, and on comparison sites is because it sounds great with any style of music. The bass isn’t overpowering, but is by no means weedy – the whole sound is incredibly balanced. Furthermore, its ergonomic fit has been hailed for its comfort, and there are a range of sizes hat come with it in terms of earbuds.
Sennheiser MX365: we’re aware that many people don’t like the earbuds that go right into the ear – if you want another options, try these Sennheisers, which are very nearly as good. [Get it!]
7. Best wireless Bluetooth speaker
Docking stations? Pah! The future is wireless, and that means for your speaker needs, you’re best place looking for a Bluetooth device. There are things to consider; how much space it takes up, how long its battery life is – after all, its wireless nature certainly feeds into its portability potential. But of course, the sound needs to be decent too.
Logitech Ultimate Ears Mini Boom – $98
It’s the portability that actually make Logitech the best option. It’s small enough to fit in a jacket pocket, but has a sound output of 86 dB. Which is pretty huge and will easily fill a small room at a party. It’s only 4.4 inches wide, 2.6 deep, and 2.4 high – to give you an idea on its scope. Pretty compact. It also weighs less than a pound, despite its sturdiness. Its metal grill is surrounded by rubber. Finally, it offers between 9-10 hours of playback.
Jawbone JAMBOX: Another great option – not quite as portable, but with just as great sound, and around the same price. [Get it!]