2017 Best iPhone Accessories (for ANY version of iPhone!)

2017 Best iPhone Accessories (for ANY version of iPhone!)

Looking for the best iPhone accessories for your smart phone that are absolute must-haves? We’ve rounded up our favorites for 2017 – and BONUS – these will work with ANY version iPhone. (So in other words, if you are rocking an iPhone 5s, we’ve got your back!)

best iphone accessories must havesBest iPhone Accessories

Here you go – a round up of our picks for best iPhone accessories. We hope you fall in love with these products as much as we have.

PopSocket

First on our list of best iPhone accessories, the POPSOCKET! What is a POPSOCKET – you ask? A PopSocket is a phone grip and phone stand that expands and collapses using an accordion mechanism. PopSockets “pop” whenever you need a grip, a stand, a headset management system, or just something to play with. You can also wrap your cord around it – so add cord management to this list. 

best must have iphone accessories

Our friends at YouTube Red sent us a YouTube Red PopSocket in a care package. I really didn’t know if I would use it, so popped it on my iPhone and now I’m in love. So much in love, that when I bought I new case (more on that) – I Gorilla Glued the Pop Socket to my new iPhone case. 

Why do I love the PopSocket? I upgraded to the iPhone 7 Plus and while I do love it – it really is HUGE. Add-on my case, my hands are too small to effectively use the phone, but the Pop Socket – it’s lets me have a better grip on my phone. It acts as a handle when I talk or text. You can also use to prop your phone up with it. 

My daughter loved mine and ended up buying one for her phone. I have had countless people ask me about it and several who have purchased (including my nail lady!) 

Buy on Amazon

Screen Protector

When I bought the iPhone 7+, I wanted a case that wasn’t so bulky. I’m a grown-up and my kids are growing – surely I could just use a cute iPhone case and a screen protector. I did great…. for about 7 months. Then my son had to go to the ER for splinters stuck under his toenail (true story) and as I was rushing to get out of the car, guess what. BAM. Right on the pavement, my iPhone dropped. Facedown and when picked up cracked. I was devastated. 

iphone screen protector - best iphone accessoriesI took my phone in to get the screen repaired. The Apple Genius asked that I remove my cute phone case and then he made my day. What do you know, that cheap screen protector I had put on my phone HAD worked and IT cracked NOT my screen! WOOHOO! 

Needless to say, I immediately – before leaving the Apple store, jumped on Amazon and ordered another screen protector AND a new case because this mom isn’t chancing that again.

Buy on Amazon

Otterbox Defender iPhone Case

Next on our BEST iPhone accessories list is a long favorite iPhone accessory of mine, the Otterbox Defender iPhone case. Well actually, Otterbox anything I go fangirl for. My husband has a Samsung Note and uses an Otterbox. My little kids have iPads with Otterbox Defenders and my older kids have iPhones both with Otterbox Defender cases, as well.

must have iphone accessories

What I don’t like about the Otterbox Defender is the bulkiness – but folks, after experiencing the “OH CRAP, I AM GOING TO HAVE TO PAY $150 JUST TO FIX MY IPHONE SCREEN BECAUSE I DROPPED MY PHONE” panic. I quickly realized that you know what. The bulk isn’t that bad and it is so worth it. The bulkiness of the Otterbox Defender is less than what it use to be. 

True story – when we had bought our kids iPod Touches years ago, we put Defenders on the case. A few years ago, I found my son’s old iPod and was scrolling thru his photos and videos. Sure enough, that boy of mine had rolled his phone down our stairs making a video. Like THUNK THUNK THUNK and then would do it again until he was all the way down the staircase. No damage to the iPod Touch. Another time – our then toddler, threw my husband’s phone from the second story foyer balcony to the tile foyer floor. No damage. Thank you, Otterbox! 

OTTERBOX DEFENDER DEAL TIP! Check out Amazon’s Warehouse deals to see if you can find your Defender cheaper. I found my son’s for around $20 – the packaging was damaged but the product was not. 

Buy on Amazon

iPhone Selfie Light Ring

The selfie light ring for your phone – okay, before you judge read. My husband laughed so hard when he saw this on my phone. You GUYS, it really does make photos better with the light ring functionality. I use to use this often with product photos that I was taking with my iPhone. 

The iPhone selfie light ring clips on to your phone. It even worked with the Otterbox Defender.

Here is the problem. My teen daughter used my selfie light ring once and then I found it in her luggage. I reclaimed it, but the girl has stolen it again. This is the life of a mom with a teen daughter. If it’s not my yoga pants and jeans, it’s my iPhone selfie light ring. You pick and choose your battles, and I just need to order another light ring (they are super cheap – under $10!)

Buy on Amazon

Lightning Cord Tassel Keychain

Belkin is brilliant. They get tech and cute and have nailed it with their adorable lightning cord tassel keychain. That’s right, you will have your lightning cord wherever – whenever since you can easily clip this tassel keychain to your purse or wristlet. 

Buy on Amazon

iPhone Amir 2 in 1 Camera Lens Kit


Do you shoot photography with your iPhone? With the iPhone 7+, I only get my DSLR when I need specific shots or video. Check out this Amir 2 in 1 professional HD iPhone camera lens kit. This easily clips on to your iPhone (sorry, you will have to either have a thin case or remove your Otterbox – but it’s worth it!) For under $30 – you can be shooting photography with your iPhone! 

  • Deluxe – Quality 0.6X Super Wide Angle Lens – Ultra-low distortion will occur on your images when you use this 0.6X Wide-Angle lens. It can help largely expand the field of view and enable you capture the entire family or a whole team member into one picture.
  • Enhanced 15X Macro Lens – Designed with knurling circled around for convenient removing. With it, you can capture clear photos that are in greater detail at a distance of 1.18-1.57 inches from the target object. More convenient and powerful to take clear and gorgeous pictures.

Buy on Amazon

Bluetooth Wireless Headphones

This may sound weird to some, but one of my favorite hobbies is mowing the lawn. We have a few acres and riding the lawnmower while listening to podcasts is just so stress relieving to me. I use my bluetooth wireless headphones and just zone out. Progress is made, my podcasts are listened to – winning!

Buy on Amazon

External Battery / Power Bank

Whoops, I said 7 but I totally meant 8 best iPhone accessories! If you don’t have an external battery/power bank – you are totally missing out on life. Actually no, you are probably living life but just not with a FULL BATTERY. I have a collection of these. Once I was stranded in the Las Vegas and then San Antonio airport and a power bank kept me connected and sane mid-travel-panic-attack. (CES 2015 – oh the memories.)

Anywho, the larger the battery the longer it will work (but longer it will take to charge.) A 20000 mAh is ideal, if you don’t mind a bulkier battery. This lasts me days! Definitely a tech must-have when traveling.

Buy on Amazon

What’s missing in this list of iPhone accessories? Let us know in the comments!

How to Waterproof Your iPhone or Mobile Device

How to Waterproof Your iPhone or Mobile Device

waterproof your iphone

Waterproof Your iPhone

Have you ever wished you could waterproof your iPhone or mobile device? Have you ever had a kid drop a phone in the toilet or splash it with water? I have a certain family member *cough* Stephanie *cough* that has dropped iPhone into the toilet on more than 1 occasion.  The incidents have resulted in replacing her iPhone. Fortunately, Apple has been nice and accommodating, but she’s lucky (and probably flirted with the sales guy).

We came across a new technology for waterproofing. It’s a process on the market that will waterproof your iPhone or mobile device called Liquipel.  This is NOT a waterproof iPhone case or waterproof wrap. It’s a new technology.

Watch as the iPhone is submerged and comes out unscathed!

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ln0daAowdJI

Do note Liqiupel says it’s coating should be used as a precautionary measure for incidents involving water. This process doesn’t allow you to purposely go into the pool or scuba diving with your device. I am sure that new technology is coming, but this isn’t what that is.

I wonder what siri would say to this?

What is Liquipel and How Does it Waterproof My Device

Liquipel is a Nano coating that protects your device from accidental water damage.  This is NOT a case and your smart phone will look and feel the same as it did before. The Liquipel coating is 1,000 times thinner than a human hair. It doesn’t effect the performance, look or feel of your device and lasts the lifetime of your device.

How Does Liquipel Waterproof Your Device?

The company puts your mobile device into a machine and permiates your entire device.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ln0daAowdJI&feature=youtu.be

What about the headphone jack and charging ports?

Water does go into the headphone jacks and charging ports but does not hinder your device in any way. Liquipel is a non conductive coating that allows currents to transfer back and forth when there is a direct connection. What this means is you are able to charge, use headphones and access micro usb or sim cards just as you did before with no problem.

Liquipel Device List

Here is a list of other devices that they can waterproof:

  • Apple iPod Shuffle
  • Apple iPhone 4s
  • Apple iPhone 4
  • Apple iPhone 3g/s
  • Galaxy S2 (T-Mobile)
  • Galaxy S2 (AT&T)
  • HTC Evo 4G
  • HTC Evo Shift 4G
  • HTC MyTouch 4G
  • Motorola Droid X/X2
  • Samsung Charge

They are adding new devices regularly.

Digital Mom Says…

This Liquipel stuff is very cool new technology, now if if could only kid proof things – you like like my house.  It’s pricey, but so is a new Apple iPhone replacement.

Speaking of kid proof – check our our post -> Top 5 iPad Cases for Kids

Purchase Liquipel

Liquipel will cost you around $70. You mail in your device and it is mailed back to you.

click to purchase

[This is part of the Digital Mom series: iPhone Tips & Tricks]

Snapseed App – Best Photo App for iPhone, iPad & Mac

Snapseed App – Best Photo App for iPhone, iPad & Mac

snapseed review

Snapseed App Review

I stumbled upon the Snapseed app a month ago while surfing the Mac App Store. After some research, I knew I had to have it. The app was $19.95 for the desktop version. Yes, pricier than some apps, but in comparison to the software I use day to day for photo editing (Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Lightroom) and creating graphics (Adobe Fireworks) – this was drop in the bucket.

I design on a iMac 27 inch and typically do my writing on the a Macbook Pro since it’s easy to tote around chasing the kids. (My background is in design, hence the equipment – but too cheap for a powerhouse Mac!) Snapseed on the Macbook Pro gives me quick editing abilities with a lightweight program.

In addition to Mac Desktop – the Snapseed app is also available on iPhone and iPad for ultimate filtering of your mobile photos. Snapseed was named 2011 iPad app of the year by Apple – yes thing app is special!

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mIGNvb9TA_s&context=C372470eADOEgsToPDskKBPHhRVC3TKNzMsb4DEjoK

Think Instagram on Steroids

Think Instagram  on Steroids! With more filters and better control over editing, and you have Snapseed.  This app applies filters to your photographs. While yes, you can do some light editing (rotating, cropping, color correction) – it’s strength lies in the filters.

Before and after photos using snapseed

So Easy To Use Your Grandma Could Use It!

The interface is extremely simple. On the desktop, you just drag (or open) a photo onto the big “DRAG A PHOTO HERE TO GET STARTED” lettering. On the left you have your editing options.

You can choose from the presets or fine tune your own style. Or even better yet, use the filter presets and then fine tune. Yes, it’s that good.

A Wee Bit Buggy

I have noticed a few bugs that I can’t pinpoint or find answers to. No, I haven’t emailed support – I should do that.

The bugs I’ve noticed include:

  • Photo not showing edits when choosing a filter
  • Export and edits aren’t included

These were few and far between and only when using the desktop version of Snapseed.

Photo Editing Workflow

While I skip iPhoto and organize everything in Adobe Lightroom in regards to my photo catalog – I have now added Snapseed as a step on several of the photos I edit. Anytime I want to get a good vintage feel or get some tilt shift action happening, I take the photo from Lightroom and export to Snapseed.

Exporting Photos – Sharing Photos

The Snapseed app provides a very easy way to share photos. You can share easily via email, Facebook or Flickr. Me personally Flickr fan, I love this. I just set this up. I had some weird issue with Lightroom and Flickr so had stopped anything but Instagram going there. I love having an online archive of photos of the kids so was happy to see the Snapseed app include this.

You also have the option to save the file to your computer. It won’t let your override a file, so just name it something else, or use the default _snapseed addition.

Snapseed for Android

Currently the Snapseed app for Android is coming soon, so not yet Android folks!

Purchase the iPhone or iPad app – and this app will run on both! SCORE!

How to Use Pinterest App

How to Use Pinterest App

 

Pinterest apps available for the iPhone and iPad

Pinterest apps available for the iPhone

Pinterest app allows you to pin on the go.

Pinterest App for Android?

Pinterest Android users are upset that the social network has snubbed Android users by not creating an app.  Pinterest is available mobile: m.pinterest.com (but truth be told, I often switch back to full site).

On September 13, Pintrest took to their blog and announced:

We believe that mobile is extremely important, and mobile users should have a world-class Pinterest experience. Our goal is to make Pinterest available to anyone, anywhere they go. In support of this, we released a big update to our iPhone app last month, but lack of bandwidth on our end has left Android and other smartphone users in the dark.

At this time they were announcing the addition of their mobile searching. So stay tuned!  A Pinterest Android app is on it’s way.

Pinterest Apps First to iOS

Like several apps, they tend to start on iPhone and then migrate to Android after seeing successes. Case in point? Angry Birds and Words with Friends. The Pinterest app is currently available for the iPhone – but can be downloaded on the iPad. Looking forward to using the Pinterest app for Kindle Fire (Android) whenever that gets in motion!

How to Use Pinterest on iPhone

 

Overview of the Pinterest App

  • The Pinterest app is free
  • Available on the iPhone and iPad
  • Similar but different to the site
  • Allows you to pin from your phone
  • Allows all the standard Pinterest functions – pinning, repinning, following and liking

 Download the Pinterest iPhone App – FREE

Is Your Smart Phone Stressing You Out?

Is Your Smart Phone Stressing You Out?

stress and smartphones

For the love of my iPhone. Since the first meeting of my iPhone, we had an instant love connection. It was a thing of beauty.

A new study reveals that your smart phone can increase stress. From Huffington Post:

The reason, as HealthDay explains, is that smartphones produce “a relentless need to immediately review and respond to each and every incoming message, alert or bing.”

The stress gets so bad for some users that they actually begin to feel phantom vibrations, thinking their phone is buzzing when it isn’t.

“Smart phone use is increasing at a rapid rate and we are likely to see an associated increase in stress from social networking,” the study’s leader, Richard Balding of the University of Worcester told the Telegraph

I have noticed this over the course of the last few months. When I worked in corporate America, my phone dinged or vibrated non-stop. Between my work email, blog email, personal email and side work email – it was relentless. I felt bad not answering the ding, I mean someone needed something most of the time, right?

After enjoying the reduction of emails after quitting my job (I received over 200 a day), last month I cut ties with my personal email and my iPhone. So now the only emails that reside on my phone are blog and side work. While the ding is still there, I have made it a point to not answer if the answer requires more than 2 sentences.

Making these changes has most definitely changed how I interact with my phone. Sure, I still play the occasional game, Instagram or Facebook – but those are leisure. The stress component is gone, and that I love.

Does Your Smart Phone Stress You Out?