iPad Case Review: Griffin’s Elan Passport Folio

April 21, 2010 by  
Filed under Gadgets and Accessories, iPad, Reviews

This is a hands-on review of Griffin Technology’s Elan Passport Folio Case for iPad.


Although there are lot of cases in fun and bright colors for the iPad, you may still want to dress it up in a tux now and then. That’s where the Elan Passport Folio Case comes in. It’s a sleek case that gives your iPad a whole new professional look. You look like a businessperson carrying it and it’s perfect for taking into the office. Another benefit is that it conceals the iPad pretty well so people would not know that you’re carrying an iPad. This is good if you don’t want your investment to have “steal me” written all over it. It looks like a daily planner or small paper notebook when closed up.

Putting your iPad into the case is easy. Insert the iPad in on the right side first. The latches on this side do not stretch. The latches on the left side are flexible; stretch them so they hold the iPad in place.

The interior of the Elan Passport Folio is made of a soft gray microsuede lining the protects your iPad from scratches. Credit cards and business cards fit nicely in the 4 pocket inserts on the left flap. There is also a side pocket where you can insert larger sheets of paper into. The portfolio case is closed securely with a strap and insert on the outer front side of the case.

Beside being a great carrying case, I also found multiple uses for it. It could also be used as a digital photo frame, a TV stand, or even a desktop calendar. If you insert the iPad in and flip the covers inside-out, it will stand up. This allows you to display the iPad on your desk. If you use it this way, I would recommend putting a book or something heavy behind the case so it doesn’t slide too far back and fall down.

The Elan Passport Folio Case for iPad by Griffin Technology is available in black (with gray interior) and can be purchased at GriffinTechnology.com for $49.99.

Disclosure: This product was sent by Griffin Technology for review purposes. This is part of Beatweek Magazine’s coverage of iPad products. Opinions expressed in this article are my own.

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iPhone App Review: Big Top 10

October 7, 2009 by  
Filed under Games, Reviews

bigtop10Name: Big Top 10 (iTunes Link) (Lite Version)
Written By: Bight Games
Category: Games
Price: $0.99

Size: 9.1 MB
Requirements: iPhone / iPod Touch
Version: 1.0.2
Rate: 4 out of 5 Stars

bigtop10Big Top 10 is an addictive, challenging, yet simple puzzle game that you’ll find yourself playing over and over again. A 5×5 board displays the numbers 0 – 9, along with some bonuses, and negative numbers too. The object of the game is to simply drag and select the numbers so they add up to 10. The longer the selections, the more points you will earn. Your selection of numbers must be continuous on the board and diagonals are not allowed.

For example, you can select “9 + 1″, “3 + 4 + 3″, and “1 + 4 + 5.”

You can also take advantage of the zeroes and negative numbers to create even longer selections. For example, “0 + 3 + (-3) + 4 + 6.”

Power-ups are also available, which include a clock that will freeze time for 5 seconds (or in verses mode, will freeze your opponent for 3 seconds), a bomb which destroys numbers around it (and you are awarded extra points), Double points, and a star that reduces the numbers on the board to allow longer selections. If you’re stuck, you can also shake the iphone/ipod touch (or click on shuffle) to get a fresh new board. And to top it all off, the twist to the game is the 59 seconds you initially start off with.

You need to be on the same Wi-Fi network to play with another opponent. You have 2 minutes to go head to head with each other in the “Verses” mode. The player with the most points win. If you make a selection with the clock, the opponent’s screen will freeze for 3 seconds. It’s highly addictive, and a lot more fun playing with another person.

To make the game more social, Big Top 10 also uses OpenFeint to bring to you the global leaderboards as well as your friends’ game statuses. You can also integrate Twitter and Facebook and play and compare scores.

Click on “Scores” to view your personal top 10 scores, records you set, and various achievement awards. The graphics and music are beautifully done and gives a nostalgic feeling of the old big top circuses. This is what really completes the gaming package.

There is also a Big Top 10 Lite version for you to test out. You have all the features of the full version except for earning more time, head-to-head verses play, and global scores integration. For just 99 cents and hours of playtime, this game is definitely well-worth it!

This article was originally published in iProng Magazine.

Big Top 10 Trailer

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iPhone App Review: Spore Origins

February 11, 2009 by  
Filed under Games, Reviews

Spore OriginsName: SporeTM Origins (iTunes Link)
Written By: Electronic Arts
Category: Games
Price: $4.99
Size: 68.4 MB
Requirements: iPhone / iPod Touch

Eat, or be eaten! That’s the motto of “Spore Origins.” You start off as a tiny cellular blob, swimming around in search of food. You munch on the smaller creatures and stay away from the larger ones.

Evolution takes time. And as your creature develops new skills of swimming and dodging large creatures, you earn evolutionary points at the end of each level. Your creature has the same goal at each level: eat the smaller creatures by swimming towards them, avoid the larger creatures and their attacks, and fill up your “DNA Bar” to finish the level.

Tilting the iPhone in different directions moves your creature around the water or swamp. The graphics of the game is really great and colorful. The music of the game suits it very well too. Very relaxing and captures the mood of each level.

Getting your food becomes more of a challenge at each level. Stranger creatures with spikes and attacks become obstacles in your way. But you also have power-ups called “symbiotes” to your advantage. They’re scattered all throughout the level and come in three colors — red allows you to move faster, blue is a shield, and purple is poison that you can use to attack bigger creatures.

The Creature Creator is another fun part of the game. Click on “Edit Creature” after you complete each level. As you gain evolution points, you are able to edit how your creature looks and add new features to it. You can change the pattern and color, add eyes and feelers, spikes, teeth, and shields. The more evolution points you gain, the more items you can unlock.

Overall, it’s a fun game to play! With 30 levels to explore, it may be a little addictive. If you’d like to try it for free, test out the Spore Origins Lite version. You can play one level as well have full features to the Creature Creator.

Spore Origins Spore Origins Spore Origins Spore Origins Spore Origins

This article was originally published on page 27 of iProng Magazine’s 34th issue.

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iPhone App Review: Easy Relax

October 14, 2008 by  
Filed under Apple, Reviews

photoName: Easy Relax
Written By: RockiFone
Category: Healthcare and Fitness
Price: FREE (time-limited sales promotion)
Size: 19.5 MB
Requirements: iPhone / iPod Touch

I usually have trouble clearing my mind at night. But I started using this iphone app right before bedtime and found myself falling asleep much faster. It’s very similar to those Sharper Image sound makers, except it fits right in your iphone/ipod touch!

The app plays 7 preset themes. With these themes, you can add more ambient sounds. For example, the “Hawaii Vacation” theme plays the sound of the ocean. But if you tap the arrow on the right, you can add the sounds of birds, beach waves, bubbles, etc. Customize it however you want!

My favorite themes are: Fishing, Hawaiian Vacation, Blossoms of India
Hurry, it’s only free for a limited time. Download it now. (iTunes Link)

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iPhone App Review: Crazy Pumpkin

October 13, 2008 by  
Filed under Apple, Reviews

photoName: Crazy Pumpkin
Written By: Ezone
Category: Entertainment
Price: FREE
Size: 2.9 MB
Requirements: iPhone / iPod Touch

What a fun way to get into the Halloween spirit! Swipe the eyes, nose, and mouth and you get a totally different pumpkin. Shake it up and the flickering backlight changes. It’s a very simple to use app but can liven up any Halloween party! Download it now. (iTunes Link)

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