When the subject of iPhone additions comes up, the first thought are the dozens of new apps popping up daily at the Apple App Store. However, there are several new hardware add-ons that can make your iPhone computing more convenient. I am an early adopter of Ten One Design's Pogo Stylus. It's a small aluminum stick with a foam end that emulates the electrical capacitance of your finger. Depending on your finger coordination and size, it makes iPhone input more accurate. While not inexpensive ($14.95), I find that the stylus really helps the clicking of small links on Web pages, improving accuracy and letting me avoid the time spent zooming in several times on a page crammed with small text links. The stick comes with a holder that snaps on the sides of the iPhone and runs around the back. If you have a skin case, then you will have to do some surgery. Of course, most cases won't accommodate hardware accessories and Ten One now has a page with compatible cases, although the page for skin-style cases is a guide to cutting up the case. I already had purchased the excellent DLO HipCase ($29.95), which has a sturdy, leather-covered clip. With the Pogo's clip on the side of the iPhone, the HipCase's flap doesn't close completely and reveals a section of velcro. Still, it works. Also from Ten One is SoundClip ($7.95), a new accessory that was introduced at Macworld Expo last month. It is a small plastic cup that fits over one of the speakers at the bottom of the iPhone and points the sound forward instead of down. It clips into the Dock Connector. The company says that its "tuned conical deflection chamber" enables passive sound enhancement, and following a demo on the show floor, I bought one. It works. You might think that SoundClip would increase the volume of the sound (and the company says that it amplifies the sound by 10dB), but I haven't noticed such a great difference between a bare iPhone and one with the SoundClip (perhaps an indication of the state of my hearing). What it does for me is to boost the midrange and higher parts of the audio spectrum, which can make the words clearer and more intelligible. It sounds better, if the sound from the built-in speaksers can be said to be "good." Also at the Expo was Meridrew Enterprises' iKlear Antibacterial/Microfiber Cloth for the iPhone. It's a small cloth that has a fine absorbent surface that can trap bacteria. I am not paranoid, but it's a simple way to prevent your iPhone from being a vector to a cold. The current small cloth comes with several of the Klear Screen kits (these are terrific sets of a screen-safe cleaner and optical chamois or cloths that are good for notebooks, LCD screen, HDTV screens and your glasses) including: the iKlear Complete Cleaning Kit ($24.95) and the iKlear iPod, iPhone & MacBook Cleaning Kit ($19.95).
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