Apple items top Mother's Day techie gift list - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports

Apple items top Mother's Day techie gift list

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Apple's iPhone 5 shown in white/silver and black/gray (image courtesy Apple inc.) Apple's iPhone 5 shown in white/silver and black/gray (image courtesy Apple inc.)
Apple's fourth generation iPad with Retina display shown in white (image courtesy Apple inc.) Apple's fourth generation iPad with Retina display shown in white (image courtesy Apple inc.)
Satechi BT Touch powered speaker: a highly portable package that produces big sound. Satechi BT Touch powered speaker: a highly portable package that produces big sound.
New Trent iTorch combines an external USB battery supply, LED flashlight, and laser pointer. New Trent iTorch combines an external USB battery supply, LED flashlight, and laser pointer.
Coloud BOOM headphones with microphone for iPhone shown in purple Coloud BOOM headphones with microphone for iPhone shown in purple

Apple is supposedly experiencing a slowdown in iPhone sales, causing some analysts to speculate whether Apple has lost its mojo. Not likely. According to sources, the iPhone 5 was the world's most popular smart phone in Q4 2012 (the iPhone 4S came in second). With sales of over 37 million smart phones, who can blame Apple for changing its TV ads to flaunt the fact that the iPhone is numero uno?

One reason for the iPhone's dominance is women. Male iPhone owners might clamor for a larger screen, but the current model is well-suited to the hands of most women. The current iPhone is not only comfortable to hold, it's good-looking -- gorgeous, actually. Add ease of use, tons of accessories, and an awe-inspiring assortment of apps, and it's no wonder the iPhone is the smart phone most women prefer.

The iPhone 5 features a 4-inch Retina display and an A6 processor designed by Apple to maximize performance and power efficiency. The 8-megapixel iSight camera features a sapphire crystal lens cover that is thinner and more durable than standard glass with the ability to provide crystal clear images.

The phone's camera can capture jaw-dropping panorama images of up to 28 megapixels by simply moving the lens across a scene in one smooth motion. Other features include improved image stabilization, video face detection for up to 10 faces, and the ability to take still photos as you record.

The iPhone 5's enhanced audio includes a new beam-forming, directional microphone system for higher quality sound. New noise-canceling technology and redesigned Apple EarPods deliver acoustic quality typically reserved for higher-end earphones.

The device comes in either white/silver or black/slate and sells for a suggested retail price of $199 for the 16GB model and $299 for the 32GB model and $399 for the 64GB model. For more information, visit Apple.com.

If Mom already has an iPhone and all the accessories she needs, then let's talk about the iPad.

Apple has sold more than 120 million iPads, and the fourth generation iPad with Retina display is tablet most ladies would love to own. If it's within your budget, spring for the new 128GB model. Mom will get twice the storage capacity of the 64GB model, giving her plenty of room to store videos, music, and over 300,000 native iPad apps (over 800,000 apps total).

Along with tons of storage, the top-of-the-line iPad features a gorgeous 9.7-inch Retina display, Apple-designed A6X chip, and a FaceTime HD camera. The 128GB iPad with Retina display is available in black or white, for a suggested retail price of $799 for the Wi-Fi model and $929  for Wi-Fi + Cellular model. Lesser fourth generation iPads start at $499.

For a finishing touch, add the iPad SmartCover for $39 ($69 in leather) or the iPad SmartCase for $49.

To make Mom's new iPad ultra-personal, consider a FREE laser-engraved message. Personalized laser engraving for a new iPad, iPhone, or iPod is only available on the Apple Online Store, but if you order by May 3rd with expedited shipping, your engraved iPad will arrive in time for Mother's Day. See Apple.com for details.

Other unique Apple Mother's Day gift ideas include the iPhoto Print Products you can create with your Mac. These include beautiful photo hardcover/softcover books, calendars, and letterpress cards. Visit Apple.com for details, or see my Web article from last December.

For those waiting for Apple's next big thing, Worldwide Development Conference will be held in San Francisco June 10 - 15. The event is expected to provide a peak at iOS 7 and glimpses of new Apple products, most of the which industry experts say won't hit stores until the holidays or 2014. As such, for Mother's Day, you can't go wrong buying Mom an iPhone 5 or an iPad -- or accessories for either if she already owns both.

Third-party Accessories

Hundreds of genuine Apple iPhone and iPad accessories are available from Apple's Online Store or at the Apple store in Lakeside Mall. When you add third-party items, the selection becomes almost limitless. High-fashion cases for the iPhone and sexy, bright-colored neoprene skins for the iPad have great girlie-girl appeal, but if you simply want to enhance Mom's enjoyment of her iPhone or iPad, consider the following:

The Satechi BT Touch Wireless Portable Speaker provides quality sound combined with the ability to answer calls via the unit's built-in microphone. When there's a call, speaker volume is automatically lowered. The Bluetooth-connected unit is compact and portable, delivering powerful, dynamic sound via its 2.5 X 2 watt dual-channel speaker system. Sporting a glossy, sleek black design, the unit features modern, blue LED touch buttons that control audio playback, volume, and answers calls. Additional features include a rechargeable lithium ion battery and a built-in 3.5mm jack to connect devices directly to the speaker or to use as an extension of existing audio systems. The Satechi BT Touch Wireless Portable Speaker sells for $49.99. For more information, visit Satechi on the Web.

The New Trent's iTorch IMP52D is a 5200 mAh battery pack designed to work with all versions of the iPhone and iPad. The unit also has a built-in laser pointer and LED flashlight.  The unit can nearly triple the time an iPhone 5 can play videos or surf the Internet via WiFi. A micro-USB to USB charging cable and cloth carrying case are included to complete the package. The iTorch measures 4 x 2 x 0.9-in and weights 4.4 oz. and sells for $39.95. For more information, visit NewTrent.com.

Coloud is a new name in music. The Coloud BOOM series delivers fine-tuned, ergonomic headphones with a microphone/remote function so you can answer those calls that come in and interrupt the sound of music in your ears. One-size fits all, and the choice of colors will delight any Mom. The MSRP is $40.00. For more information, visit Coloud.com.

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