This handcrafted wooden dock+tray gives you an elegant spot to charge your Apple products

There’s an undeniable simplicity and beauty to Yohann’s iPhone and Apple Watch charging dock+tray. Handcrafted from walnut wood (there’s a lighter, Oakwood variant too), the charging dock+tray takes into account the space it’s going to be kept in and adds a homely, classy touch to your wooden workdesk, bedside table, or coffee table.

The dock/stand’s choice of wood as a material gives it a classic appeal, making it look elegant even when it’s empty. The underlying tray provides a nice surface to keep your keys, USB sticks, and even AirPods; while channels running along its base you cleverly organize your charging cables. The stand’s waist provides the perfect place to stash/charge your Apple Watch, and the lightning port on the upper surface lets you easily dock your iPhone vertically, so you can charge it while you answer calls, view your calendar, attend conferences, or just browse through social media!

Designer: Yohann

Detachable joy-cons add gaming controls to the back of your iPhone!

Forget Back Tap, the iPhone’s back surface just got a whole lot more functional. Behold the Tundra, a conceptual set of gaming joy-cons that snap to the back of your phone, adding controls to it. Unlike most controllers that add buttons facing you, the Tundra give you buttons that are accessible, but don’t occupy real estate on the front of your phone. They snap on in such a way that you can easily use them with your index, middle, and ring fingers. The index fingers can easily work on the trigger/shoulder buttons on the top, and the middle and ring-fingers can be used to mash the XYAB buttons and the D-Pad. Meanwhile, your thumb can use the on-screen controls too, giving you the best of all worlds!

While the Tundra currently exist only as a concept, they present a new direction for mobile gaming controllers, providing a sleek yet functional alternative to the large, ergonomic, console-style controllers that let you mount your phone into them. The Tundra exist as sleek units that don’t add weight, mass, or thickness to your phone. They can easily slip right into your pocket, phone and all, and if removed, come with a small, pocket-friendly storage/charging case like your AirPods!

Designer: Diego Schreibvogel Cases

This framed disassembled iPhone 5 makes the perfect gift for any tech-lover

As an industrial designer myself, there’s definitely art in the way products are designed, engineered, and crafted together. More so, when the products are pulled apart so you can marvel at the level of intricacy gone into putting it together. Take the iPhone for example, one of the most iconic products of our time. Ask anyone what they think of the iPhone and a hefty percentage of them will say it looks beautiful for sure (some may use the word expensive too), but nobody knows what it looks like on the inside.

Indie art-studio GRID is creating artpieces from these electronics by revealing their, well, inner beauty. The iPhone 5 Framed Edition has a carefully dismantled, arranged, and labeled unit of the smartphone, showing every single component that comes together to form the iconic smartphone. On either side of the display unit lie the front and back, the Gorilla glass display and the machined Aluminum chassis. In between lie the battery, the main board, the different modules, buttons, even the camera, speaker, and the SIM tray! There’s definitely a certain beauty to the iPhone’s complexity, like looking at a da Vinci painting up close so you can see every single brushstroke, crack in the paint, and the canvas texture. If you’re a tech-lover, futurist, and nerd like me, this is no less than looking at the Mona Lisa! Obviously, the phones come pre-loved (used), so expect minor wear and tear.

Designer: GRID

BMW drivers will be able to unlock cars without touching their iPhone

BMW has announced a upgraded version of the BMW Digital Key feature for iPhone. With Digital Key Plus, drivers will be able to unlock and start their car without taking their phone out of their pocket or bag. The automaker is tapping into the ultra-w...

Apple’s new MacBooks may have wireless charging surfaces built into them

It seems like Apple’s plans of not including charging cables with their iPhones may just make a little more sense, considering what they’re building their laptops to do. In patent files recently uncovered by Patently Apple, the company is rumored to be working on integrating wireless charging surfaces into their future MacBooks. According to the patents, charging zones on either side of the trackpad, and even at multiple locations on the lid, will be able to charge a whole variety of Apple products, from the iPhone to the AirPods, Apple Watch, and even probably future iterations of the iPad.

Apparently, we have the new M1 chips to thank for this, and their ability to pull off all this heavy-lifting and power delivery. The filing describes how multiple charging coils could be placed inside both the frame AND lid of a MacBook “that could accommodate charging of multiple devices at one time”. Combine this with some iteration of Apple’s new MagSafe technology and your MacBook, whether closed or open, could be the dedicated charging surface for most of your Apple peripherals. It’s an elegant solution that even does a hat-tip to user behavior patterns, where people already keep their iPhones and AirPods around their laptops while they work. Now these devices have dedicated spaces for charging right ON your laptop… and you don’t need a SINGLE cable. The powerful new MacBook got even more powerful!

It’s a good thing that AirPower Mat didn’t work out, huh…

Designer/Visualizer: Sarang Sheth

Image Credits: Sarang Sheth for Yanko Design
Patent discovered by: Patently Apple

The most minimal iPhone 12 case also gives it the most amount of character

Think of the Arc Pulse as a helmet and elbow + shin guards for your phone. Nobody wears a suit of armor as they’re skateboarding. Instead, they wear gear to protect just vulnerable, high-impact areas like the joints and the head, right? Well, the Arc Pulse applies that logic to the smartphone by targetting and shielding just the areas that are more likely to experience damage… the corners, and the camera bump.

Isn’t it funny that we buy a phone partially based on its aesthetics, meticulously choose a color that appeals to us, and then cover everything up with a boring looking case? The Arc Pulse makes the argument that protecting a smartphone shouldn’t mean shrouding its very character. The Arc Pulse’s bumper-inspired design sits on just the top and bottom, with its minimalist two-part case covering the phone from all angles. The bumpers come with a lip that extends on the front, protecting the screen, while its inherent design guards the corners, sides, and even the back. Available in titanium and aluminum variants, the Arc Pulse gives the iPhone a unique character with the way it sits on the top and bottom. This minimalist, almost ornamental aesthetic not only helps show off your smartphone, but it also exposes the phone’s antenna bands, ensuring perfect 5G coverage, and even allows you to use the wireless charger unencumbered. The Arc Pulse, which is available for all iPhone 12 models, comes with a unique and proprietary slide-on fit™ system that bonds the case to the phone in a way that gives you both impact resistance as well as shock-absorption… all while showing off your smartphone’s design the way it was intended to be seen!

Designer: Arc

These smartphone camera lenses bridge the gap between the iPhone and DSLR

Imagine if the words “Shot On An iPhone” weren’t a distinction. What if the iPhone was just as powerful as a DSLR, so those words “Shot On An iPhone” were more of an assumption than an achievement. Well, in order to be compared to a DSLR, you’d need a powerful sensor and interchangeable lenses… and the iPhone definitely has one of those.

Although the iPhone DOES come with multiple camera lenses, it’s worth noting that only one of them is really the primary, versatile camera, while the others (the Wide Angle and the Telephoto) are more specific in their function. The +Lens modular system by Shawn Wang relies on empowering the primary camera with add-on lenses – much like the way you snap lenses onto your DSLR. Unlike most smartphone camera-lenses, Wang’s +Lens system is both exhaustive and powerful. The system consists of four add-on lenses that come in a nice, AirPods-case-shaped box along with a holder that lets them snap right onto your iPhone. These lenses, apart from augmenting your iPhone’s photographic abilities, come with their own focus rings, giving you precise control over how you capture the world around you. Wide-angle, Fish-eye, Telephoto, and Macro lenses give you the versatility of a DLSR in the convenient portability of an iPhone, and the +Lens holder even features a slot to add modules like an external flash. Combine the power of the interchangeable lens system with that of the iPhone’s computational photography chops, and you’ve really got the best of both worlds, right in your pocket!

Designer: Hsuan-Tsun “Shawn” Wang