When my iPad first arrived, I used it mostly as a couch computer, surfing the web, posting to Twitter, and playing the occasional round of Plants vs. Zombies—essentially using it as a substitute fun machine for my MacBook, which was relegated to work tasks like writing stories and paying bills. It wasn’t until the recent holiday travel season that my iPad saw any substantial use as an entertainment device. But of course playing a bunch of video saps even the iPad’s considerable energy stores, which made an external battery essential for long flights and multi-day trips. The Stand from HyperMac packs in a hefty 40-watt-hour battery, which gives your iPad more than 1.5 times its built-in capacity.
Apple’s legal eagles have already forced third-party battery maker HyperMac to stop selling MacBook charging cables as of November 2, but now it appears the company has also been forced to bow to pressure over the use of the word “Mac” in their name.
If you’re in the market for a third-party charging cable or car charger for your MacBook because Apple’s own solutions are too expensive, you better act fast -- the sun may be setting for good on at least one company’s option.
If you listen closely, you can hear the drums of war beating once again. Follow the sound on the wind and you'll be led to the faraway land of Cupertino where it's clear that Apple is none too pleased with Sanho Corporation, makers of the increasingly popular line of HyperMac external battery products for just about every Apple product under the sun. It seems that Apple's beef stems from the fact that many of the products from the HyperMac line include MagSafe adapters for connecting to power-hungry MacBooks, MacBook Pros and MacBook Air. In addition, they also utilize Apple's 30-pin dock connector to move juice from their batteries on to every iOS device under the sun. This might not be an issue if Sanho had asked permission to do so. However, as you may have guessed by now, they didn't.
Sure, the unibody MacBooks have longer-lasting batteries. But for many,
those improvements came at too high a cost--no swapping of spare
batteries can be a lethal limitation. But for the folks at Sanho, it
presented a dreamy business opportunity, and their line of batteries
delivers the plug-and-go power that many of you crave, though you’ll
pay a premium for it.
HyperMac showed us their new line of external iPod and iPhone batteries. Available in a rainbow of colors, you'll never have an excuse to not watch the entire Arrested Development series while in flight again.
Now that you've seen our picks for Gear of the Year,
we're curious to find out what your essential gear is. Tell us what
your three favorite pieces of Mac-related hardware were in 2009. And
remember, they don't necessarily have to be Apple products. So if
you've got a favorite mouse, iPhone case, or laptop bag that the world
needs to hear about, let us know. Send the name of your three favorite
hardware products, along with a brief description of what you do with
them, and why they're so awesome. The most interesting and enthusiastic
response will score an excellent prize.