iHome focuses on Lightning, Bluetooth, and fitness
LAS VEGAS—iHome makes so many different audio products that even the PR people have a hard time keeping them straight. The new lineup introduced at CES is no exception, and here for your enjoyment are some highlights from my personal tour of the company’s 2013 products.
The $150 iDL100 is a triple-charging stereo clock radio with dual Lightning docks—one an iPhone or iPod touch, the other for and iPad or iPad mini—plus a USB port to connect older iOS devices (or even a third Lightning-based product if you’ve got on). You can charge and play music from any of the devices—there’s even an auxiliary jack for playing from other hardware—and you can set multiple alarms to wake you to music or playlists from your devices or from the built-in FM radio.
A step down is the $100 iDL45, which is basically the same product but with a single Lightning dock instead.
iHome’s $200 iBT44 is a follow-up to 2011’s iP4 boombox-styled dockable speaker. But this time around, it’s all about Bluetooth, which lets you wirelessly stream music from iOS, Android, or other Bluetooth-enabled hardware. (The dock slot is still there, but now just as a place to rest your weary portable device.) It runs on six D batteries or wall power, features a five-band EQ, and comes with a magnetic remote that gloms onto the metal front so you won’t lose it.
The iBT30 is a Bluetooth version of the company’s iW3 AirPlay speaker. Like the iW3, the iBT30 is a rechargeable speaker that sits atop it charging base. Stream your music to it wirelessly and then you can just pick it up and move it around the house until the battery runs out. It also includes an auxiliary jack for direct playback and a USB port to charge one of your devices.
The $80 iBT20 is a Bluetooth clock radio that also includes a USB charging port. It’s got an FM radio built-in with six presets, SRS TruBass for better sound, and a backup battery to make sure your alarm goes off even when your power goes out.
The $100 iB85 are Bluetooth headphones with a built-in mic and on-ear remote control functions. They feature a padded headband and ear cushions, charge via a Micro-USB connection, and fold up for better portability (especially using the included travel pouch).
The $20 iB10 sport earhooks with “cord cruncher” cable designed for active (read: exercising) audio lovers. These are fairly standard earbud with sport hooks to keep them from falling off while running and the like. The neat (or gimmicky, depending on your point of view) feature is the retracting, sheathed cable that prevents tangles and limits cable length for when you, say, have your player in an arm band.