Why the notch on the new Apple MacBook is a TERRIBLE idea from a User Interface perspective…

The upper part of a laptop screen is often reserved for mission-critical digital elements like menus and toolbars, search bars, filenames, internet browser tabs, and other crucial information. Putting a notch there is just counterintuitive and downright senseless.

The notch was supposed to be temporary. It was supposed to eventually be replaced by a hole punch camera, or by a transparent display, but it was never supposed to stick around for so long that it manifested itself onto another range of products. Putting a notch on the iPhone could be classified as innovation back in 2017 (complex facial mapping and recognition on a handheld device… pretty impressive), however, carrying it to the laptop feels lazy. Moreover, the notch on Apple’s M1 Pro MacBooks doesn’t even do FaceID, there’s a TouchID Key on the Keyboard for authentication. It’s there because someone at Apple thought slimmer bezels would look nice, echoing a rare Jony-Ive-level of narrow-minded thinking that gave us the iPhone Bendgate, the odd Magic Mouse charger, and the lightning connector on the backside of the 1st Gen Apple Pencil.

Now Apple’s most obvious solution was to simply turn the upper bar into a black no-go zone while using programs in full-screen, so the notch doesn’t eat into the software’s interface elements. You don’t need viral internet star bastion-of-human-sensibility Khaby Lame to tell you that this basically proves that the notch wasn’t necessary to begin with. Through the duration of the keynote, Apple’s team spent a grand total of 9 seconds highlighting the notch (without ever using the word ‘notch’), and even in those 9 seconds, all that VP of Product Design Kate Bergeron ever mentioned was that the upper bezel was made 60% thinner… a feature that’s only purpose was to make the overall screen on the MacBook Pro bigger. Nothing else.

So what’s inside that notch? Well, just a camera. One single 1080p camera. This means the MacBook Pro has a notch, but doesn’t have the benefits of it, i.e., FaceID or Memojis. One can’t help but feel baffled and slightly short-changed here. From what I can tell, the notch is visible ONLY on your desktop and when you have multiple windows open… but when you maximize a task or program, the top of your display turns into a black bar, making that entire strip of screen useless for 99% of your time using the laptop. Apple does this with its own apps too – Safari, Logic, Facetime – going to show that even its own apps can’t account for the notch.

It’s a shame that the notch is the only glaring problem I have with the laptop. It sits there continuously triggering me like talking to someone who is blissfully unaware that they have spinach stuck in their teeth. If you can look past the notch, the laptops are great. The new M1 Pro and M1 Max chips push the laptop’s performance and efficiency off the charts, giving you a laptop that’s VOLUMES faster than even its older iterations. The new laptops use Liquid Retina XDR displays and come with powerful speakers that fire both upward and downward for stellar audio. The ports finally make a comeback too, and the TouchBar’s gone the way of the dodo, being replaced by a row of function keys. The laptops come with up to 8 mind-numbing terabytes of storage and 64 GB of memory, with the M1 Max chip having 10 CPU cores and 32 GPU cores, making the laptop an absolute beast of a machine while still having a respectable 21 hours of battery life thanks to how efficient the new chips are. If you can look past the notch… the new Apple MacBook Pros have a lot to offer. I for one, am patiently waiting for the notch’s demise.

Watch the 2021 MacBook Pro introduction video below.





The world’s first USB-C iPhone exists… and it wasn’t built by Apple





Apple may have until 2024 to comply with the EU’s demands to have USB-C as the standard charging port for smartphones… but it seems like a Swiss robotics student may have beaten them to the punch. Meet the world’s only USB-C iPhone (that we know of), hacked together by Ken Pillonel, a master’s degree student in robotics at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology.

The USB-C iPhone has been on Ken’s mind for a while. In fact, he embarked on this journey 5 months ago with a video explaining how he planned on modifying an existing iPhone, and even demonstrating a work-in-progress. Now, Ken’s work is pretty much complete as he debuted his first working prototype of the iPhone USB-C. The modified iPhone doesn’t just sport a USB-C for kicks… the port actually works, and lets you charge your phone as well as transfer data.

At the very heart of Ken’s solution is a redesigned PCB ribbon cable that fits inside the iPhone X, replacing the lightning charging PCB. Ken’s initial experiments from 5 months ago involved using a breadboard to work out the circuitry, before he actually fabricated a pretty professional-looking ribbon PCB that could actually fit inside the iPhone’s housing, sandwiching itself between the other components. The outer chassis of the iPhone had to be CNC machined too, to fit the new, wider port. Ken’s working on a much more in-depth video to showcase his final result and the process behind it, but he decided to give the world a taste of his prototype in a short YouTube snippet.

For now, Ken’s modded USB-C iPhone is probably one-of-its-kind. It isn’t entirely clear if Ken plans on taking his PCB to the market, although I imagine there’s an entire building of lawyers in Apple’s HQ waiting for a chance to fire up lawsuits and cease-and-desist notices to people and companies who create such kits that involve meddling with the iPhone’s hardware.

As a customer, however, the idea of a USB-C iPhone seems quite tantalizing. Imagine having just one cable for your MacBook, iPad Pro, and iPhone, and not needing multiple cables and solutions to charge different devices (or transfer data between them if AirDrop isn’t an option). That being said, unless Apple makes the USB-C iPhone official, Ken’s little hack isn’t going to sit well with the folks at the genius bar when you go to get anything repaired. Don’t expect any of your product warranties to still be valid!

Designer: Ken Pillonel

This iPhone 14 design with a solo powerful rear camera could be Apple’s way of shaking up the smartphone industry




 

An Apple iPhone 14 proposed design that challenges the design iteration of the phone’s camera module.

Now that the powerful and sleek iPhone 13 series is out there to have, the focus for the tech community shifts to the next smartphone in development by Apple. The iPhone 14 is more than 10 months away from fruition and the speculations about how the device will look are already out in the cloud. The phone might take a detour in terms of design from the flattened sides to the contoured design, similar to the iPhone 7. That’s because Apple tends to adapt the old successful designs for the smartphone – take the iPhone 12 and iPhone 13 as examples which adapted the famous iPhone 5 design.

How the next exciting iPhone will look is anybody’s guess, for now, to be frank, but industrial designer Laci Lacko believes it could be a radical leap with its roots tracing back to the iPhone 7 series. That similar rounded side design lending it a thin feel in hand. Surprisingly, the designer doesn’t give us a peek into the front of the device, but going by the rumor mill, it should have minimal (as compared to iPhone 13) or no notch at all. What’s highlighted in this concept phone is the rear camera module.

A big protruding single 35mm lens setup that has an f1.2 i aperture sensor promises the ultimate photography experience. Something comparable to a DSLR. The lens is so big, it almost feels like an add-on to the sleek body frame of the imagined iPhone. While I believe, this design will never make it past the drawing boards, still who’s stopping concept designers from challenging the future of very stagnated phone design philosophy. My only gripe from this design is the lack of front-on images of the phone .

Designer: Laci Lacko

Apple iPhone 13 – Marginally Better Camera, Smaller Notch, Recycled Plastic (An honest guide to the new iPhone)





The fact that you’re here reading my opinion on the new Apple iPhone 13 is a responsibility I take incredibly seriously, but I’ll be honest… a lot of times innovation just gets sugar-coated. Throwing statistics like saying an iPhone is 40% faster and 10% lighter sounds incredibly enticing, but at the end of the day, a consumer is hardly expected to sit and measure an iPhone’s screen to see how much larger it is compared to its predecessor, or simultaneously run games on both phones and see if the newer one has 20% better graphics thanks to a 5-core GPU. As much as nerdy stats sound exciting, they honestly mean nothing to 99.9% of consumers when push comes to shove. So here’s my simplified overview of the new iPhone 13 – no technical jargon, no over-complicated charts, just simple facts.

The simple reason behind why I’m choosing this format is because there’s nothing measurably better in this year’s lineup. I’ve honestly seen the climate go through more drastic changes in a single year than the iPhone has this year. (And I’m not knocking on Apple… I just think this forced tradition of launching a new phone every year is getting tiring)

Apple introduced 5G and MagSafe with last year’s iPhones, so this is almost like a placeholder year for the company as the world combats a pandemic + chip shortage, and also as Apple prepares for much higher demand next year as people who bought the iPhone 11 and 12 will want to upgrade to the iPhone 14. So what’s new with this year’s iPhone? Not much if you’re looking for major changes. The notch is now slightly smaller (yet still very noticeable), the battery slightly bigger, the chip slightly better, the cameras have night mode, and you can now shoot cinematic videos where the focus shifts from one subject to another, like in films. Oh, and the iPhone 13 also uses plastic from recycled bottles in its antenna strips.

What just about visually sets the iPhone 13 and 13 Mini apart from last year’s iPhone 12 and 12 Mini is the marginally smaller notch (although a 20% size reduction isn’t really enough to make a difference), and the new camera layout on the back. The new diagonal layout, Apple claims, adds more space between the two lenses, allowing the internal sensors to be bigger. It’s enough to make this year’s iPhone 13 camera as good as last year’s 12 Pro. Pretty cool, but it isn’t unexpected to see cameras get better every year.

The new iPhone 13 and 13 Mini run on the A15 bionic chip, come with a slightly larger battery, and house a stronger Ceramic-Shield glass on the front. The antenna strips on the side of the phone use recycled plastic (from single-use bottles) along with recycled rare earth magnets, tungsten, gold, and other materials used in the phone. Like their predecessors, they support 5G and MagSafe, are available in 5 colors, and will ship without a charger.

The iPhone 13 and 13 Mini are accompanied by the 13 Pro and 13 Pro Max, which come with the same shimmering stainless steel body and glass front and back. The front sports the smaller notch, while the back looks exactly the same. The Pro series come with 3 lenses, although Apple claims they’ve made major changes to all three of them, giving all of them Night Mode and the ability to shoot incredible shots no matter the lighting. A notable upgrade to the iPhone’s camera capabilities is the addition of Macro photography, which lets you now zoom in on really small subjects to capture tinier details.

The new cameras on the 13 and 13 Pro editions also support a rather interesting video feature called Cinematic Mode – which allows the camera to automatically and intelligently shift focus from subject to subject while you’re taking a video, just like in Hollywood films. Here’s a quirky little short film they shot entirely on the iPhone to show the Cinematic Mode in action.

Ultimately, the iPhone 13 and 13 Pro aren’t as game-changing as one would expect, although I partly blame us consumers for having such lofty standards each year. Yes, they’re incrementally better (as they absolutely should be), but not in a way that’s directly measurable… or warranting of an upgrade (unless you absolutely need it). If you’re looking at your iPhone 12 and wondering whether to line up outside the Apple Store for an upgrade, I’d tell you to sit this one out. Apart from a slightly smaller notch, you’re really not missing much; and if you want longer battery life, perhaps a $99 MagSafe battery pack could solve your woes?

Designer: Apple

What does the “perfect” iPhone look like? Here’s our wishlist of features ahead of the Apple iPhone 13 event





In just hours from now, the Apple crew take the stage to unveil the iPhone 13 (whether it will also feature a Mission Impossible-style intro with Tim Cook rappelling down into a secret facility with a latex mask is anyone’s guess)… and truth be told, we pretty much know what to expect from the new iPhone, from better battery life to stronger glass, perhaps a smaller (yet omnipresent) notch, better cameras, better display, better software, and possibly even satellite connectivity… thanks, not to overwhelming consumer feedback, but rather to supply chain leaks.

Apple’s approach to designing phones has always been a “we know what’s best for you” one, a stark difference from other companies like OnePlus who intently listen to their communities and design phones based on what their customers overwhelmingly want… and while that isn’t a knock on Apple, it’s resulted in a few popular features being introduced WAY longer than the competition – like wireless charging, widgets, 5G, and even bringing FaceTime to non-Apple devices LONG after Skype, Zoom, Google Meet, and Microsoft Teams became popular. So, what if, for once, Apple designed an iPhone purely based on a consumer wishlist? What would a customer-feedback-driven iPhone look like? Designer Andrea Copellino has a few ideas.

Apple iPhone 13 Wishlist Andrea Copellino

Copellino’s “Peak iPhone” stays mindful of a few things. It doesn’t employ innovation for the sake of it. No waterfall displays, no folding screens, no fingerprint sensor in the Apple logo, no headphone jack to make Apple look like it’s backtracking. The elements of Copellino’s Peak iPhone are simply external hardware features that take the original iPhone experience and amplify it. There are also a few internal hardware considerations that I’d like to see in the iPhone but they aren’t any different from the stuff MKBHD always talks about, like much longer battery life, a higher refresh rate display, possibly a migration to USB-C charging, and possibly the ability to add a memory card to your iPhone.

Apple iPhone 13 Wishlist Andrea Copellino

There are a few noteworthy changes to the front and the back. The front sports a slightly elongated display, pushing the screen aspect ratio from 19.5:9 to the more generally accepted 21:9. It also does away with the notch, offering a more expansive immersive display for viewing content. While Copellino hasn’t hinted at where the front-facing camera would sit, I’d honestly be fine with a hole punch (something that is expected in the iPhone 14 next year).

Apple iPhone 13 Wishlist Andrea Copellino

While the front looks devoid of a camera, the rear comes with a mini screen that does everything from sharing notifications, messages, alerts, the time, and even acting as a viewfinder for the rear camera. This effectively means being able to use the iPhone’s superior set of cameras to click better selfies, although how one would use the camera with apps like Instagram and TikTok is something that’s yet to be determined. Nevertheless, the presence of a rear screen does three things – it lets you interact with your phone without waking the main screen, it creates a more horizontal camera bump that lets your iPhone rest on flat surfaces without rocking, and lastly, offers a functionality-driven secondary display like the ones found in folding phones… except without needing a folding display. It goes without saying that checking your clock or notifications on the smaller screen helps prolong your iPhone’s battery too.

Apple iPhone 13 Wishlist Andrea Copellino

Perhaps my favorite upgrade to the iPhone is the replacement of physical volume buttons with a touch bar. Borrowing its user interaction from the AirPods, the Peak iPhone ditches the physical volume control buttons for a touch-sensitive recessed surface that you can slide your finger on to increase or decrease the volume. It’s elegant to look at, and not to mention, takes the annoyance out of pressing the volume button 10 times or holding it in place for 10 seconds.

Apple iPhone 13 Wishlist Andrea Copellino

All in all, the Peak iPhone makes enough of a leap forward while retaining what works. The flat-edge design is still there, although the absence of the notch really makes the bezels disappear. The back’s upgrade with the screen provides enough functionality without taking away the iPhone’s ability to wirelessly charge or support MagSafe accessories. Just give us a 120Hz screen and a bigger battery and Tim Cook can officially say “This is the best iPhone we ever made” and actually mean it!

Designer: Andrea Copellino

Apple iPhone 13 Wishlist Andrea Copellino

The Apple iPhone 14’s design has already leaked online, a full year in advance… with a flattened camera bump and no notch




No camera module, no notch, and a design that feels like the spiritual successor to the iPhone 4 which would complete its 11th year anniversary on the day. That’s what the upcoming iPhone 14 will look like, proclaims YouTuber and Apple’s worst nightmare Jon Prosser.

Amidst the chaos of the September 14th invite to Apple‘s launch for the iPhone 13, Prosser decided to drop a pretty big bombshell. His leak, he reiterates, isn’t of the iPhone 13… but rather, of the iPhone 14, which isn’t due till 2022. Prosser says he’s been in touch with supply chain workers who have shared images of the new phone with him and has then used those images to create renders that fully do justice to the design. The design in question, celebrates the 10th anniversary of the popular iPhone 4, with a similar flat-edge design, a flat camera module underneath a glass back, and a metal rim running along the sides. A noteworthy upgrade, however, is the presence of 3 rear camera lenses, and the disappearance of the divisive notch, which has plagued the iPhone’s design for nearly 5 years if you count the notched iPhone 13 that drops next week.

Apple iPhone 14 Jon Prosser Rendersbyian

Prosser teamed up with long-time collaborator RendersByIan to help visualize the phone. Look past that incredibly tongue-in-cheek Twitter screenshot of Prosser being blocked by Apple Executive Phil Schiller, and you’ll see a design that seems new yet familiar. Apple’s cultivated a reputation of incremental progress and upgrades (with a few absolute refreshes every decade or so), and the iPhone 14 is no different. It looks remarkably like the iPhone 4, with how flush the cameras sit on the back, the circular buttons against the metal rim on the side, and a silhouette that is just as bit iconic as it was back in 2011.

Apple iPhone 14 Jon Prosser Rendersbyian

Apple iPhone 14 Jon Prosser Rendersbyian

Apple iPhone 14 Jon Prosser Rendersbyian

Flip the phone over on its front and you’ll notice perhaps its biggest visual change yet. The screen on the front does away with the infamous notch, finally adopting the hole-punch camera design that’s been around on Android phones for a while now. The disappearance of the notch was even briefly foreshadowed on an episode of Ted Lasso where fans managed to catch a fleeting glimpse of a smartphone with a hole-punch camera. Now, this could easily be Apple just trying to elaborately fool us, but the most logical solution is that the company’s finally come up with a replacement for FaceID and therefore doesn’t need that massive unibrow on the top of the phone. Some speculate an in-screen fingerprint while others say the fingerprint scanner could be merged within the power button.

Apple iPhone 14 Jon Prosser Rendersbyian

Apple iPhone 14 Jon Prosser Rendersbyian

Prosser’s video also deep-dives into possible color options and materials, which feels a little speculative at this point but it’s literally the only information we’ve got. He claims the images he saw were of the iPhone 14 Pro Max, so it isn’t immediately clear which other variants Apple aims at releasing and if there’s an iPhone 14 Mini too. Prosser also speculates that the phone will finally do away with the aluminum chassis and offer a new titanium variant which sounds incredibly interesting. The removal of the camera bump ties in with yet another online rumor from Ming-Chi Kuo that the iPhone 14 will be portless, which would mean the smartphone would need to rely solely on wireless communication and wireless charging, putting the phone’s MagSafe feature front and center. A flatter back panel (sans the camera bump) would go a great distance in helping the phone rest on flat chargers and wireless communication devices too. However, it’s too soon to really get into the details of a smartphone that isn’t due for approximately another 13 months. That being said, all we can really hope and pray for is that we get past the massive chip shortage we’re currently facing, so the next iPhone launch is nothing but smooth sailing!

Image Credits: Jon Prosser and Ian Zelbo (FRONT PAGE TECH)

Apple iPhone 14 Jon Prosser Rendersbyian

Apple iPhone 14 Jon Prosser Rendersbyian

Apple iPhone 14 Jon Prosser Rendersbyian

Apple iPhone 14 Jon Prosser Rendersbyian

Apple iPhone 14 Jon Prosser Rendersbyian

The post The Apple iPhone 14’s design has already leaked online, a full year in advance… with a flattened camera bump and no notch first appeared on Yanko Design.

Maybe a circular Apple iPod isn’t such a crazy idea after all…

Apple has had its fair share of product successes, but none have been as impactful as the iPod. The iPod truly made Apple a consumer tech company, taking it out of its little box of being a niche computer manufacturer. It practically changed the music industry overnight, ostensibly killing the CD and the Walkman while simultaneously pushing a generation towards digital downloads. It also singlehandedly forced the entire music industry to pivot from selling entire albums to selling singles. As the iPod rapidly became a household device, it also spawned an entire industry of tech-accessory manufacturers who made speakers and docks specifically for the iPod… but most importantly, it allowed tech and fashion to collide in a way that nobody had ever experienced before… fundamentally changing how Apple would make products in the future. Andrea Copellino’s iPod Nano concept captures that very spirit of the iPod in a fresh new design that breaks the mold all over again.

Nostalgia can be an incredibly powerful emotion (case in point, the 2019 Moto RAZR), although Copellino’s redesign doesn’t capitalize on the old iPod’s iconic design. Instead, it challenges it with a fresh relook at what a music player from Apple could look like – and I’ll be honest. I like it for a bunch of reasons.

Apple iPod Nano Circular Concept by Andrea Copellino

As Apple gradually began phasing out the iPod, it increasingly began looking like the iPhone (in fact the iPod Touch was almost indistinguishable from earlier models of the iPhone). Copellino sidesteps this problem by giving the iPod a complete refresh and making it circular. The new iPod Nano paves its own path forward with a fresh new design that’s instantly distinguishable from the iPhone. It sports a circular UI that Copellino designed from scratch too, borrowing elements from the Apple Watch. It also comes with a circular display that looks just marginally smaller than the one used on the HomePod Mini.

Apple iPod Nano Circular Concept by Andrea Copellino

What I really enjoy about the new iPod Nano is that it looks different but feels the same. Classic iPods came with round jog-wheels that established a circular interaction, and the new iPod Nano’s circular display just carries that forward. Its puck-like design is comfortable to hold and comes with a clip on the back that makes it easy to secure your music player around your pocket.

Apple iPod Nano Circular Concept by Andrea Copellino

Apple iPod Nano Circular Concept by Andrea Copellino

The iPod Nano concept has a bunch in common with the iPhone (although its drastic design change really sets it apart)- it runs Apple Music, Podcasts, Siri, among a bunch of other apps. It’s entirely portless too, working seamlessly with the AirPods, Pro, and Max, and charges wirelessly. Ingeniously enough, the iPod Nano is exactly the same width as Apple’s MagSafe charger, allowing it to line up perfectly while charging. Magnets on the back of the iPod let it snap to the charger perfectly, ensuring alignment every time.

Apple iPod Nano Circular Concept by Andrea Copellino

Apple iPod Nano Circular Concept by Andrea Copellino

Is Apple going to relaunch the iPod? Probably not, although Copellino’s earlier concept looks a lot like something Apple WOULD launch. This circular iPod Nano is more of a design exercise or a fan-concept, although there’s definitely a dramatic appeal to it. I could totally imagine an alternate universe with colorful billboards of human silhouettes holding circular touch-sensitive iPod Nanos, and people lining up outside Apple stores to buy them!

Designer: Andrea Copellino

Apple iPod Nano Circular Concept by Andrea Copellino

The post Maybe a circular Apple iPod isn’t such a crazy idea after all… first appeared on Yanko Design.

The new Apple iPhone 13 may ‘connect directly to satellites’, allowing you to get cellular coverage even in remote areas

Steve Jobs was famous for disrupting industries. He started with computers, then music, then cellphones, and finally revolutionized the digital marketplace with the app store… Cook continued that legacy by further disrupting watches, and then conveniently reimagining payments, through the newly launched Apple Card. Seems like the iPhone 13 is set to disrupt connectivity as we know it, being one of the first consumer-grade phones to have direct satellite connectivity.

The news comes as a rumor from renowned analyst, Ming-Chi Kuo. While it’s common to make predictions only to have them fall slightly short, Kuo’s analyses and ‘leaks’ have an incredibly high success rate… and the veteran analyst just dropped a big bomb-shell a few hours ago – that the latest iPhone might have the ability to make satellite calls.

In a note to investors, Kuo made claims that the new iPhone would be able to connect directly with Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellites thanks to a customized Qualcomm X60 baseband chip. Low Earth Orbit satellites recently gained popularity, thanks to Elon Musk’s efforts with his Starlink project – an initiative to flood the lower atmosphere with satellites that would provide internet to all corners of the globe. Operating at a level much closer to earth than traditional satellites, LEOs tend to avoid some of the more common pitfalls of satellite internet, like high latency, and frequent blackouts. Starlink is one of many companies launching these LEO satellites into space, and Kuo hints that the Qualcomm X60 chip in the iPhone 13 may just support some form of satellite connectivity. In layman’s terms, this would translate to better 5G coverage in areas that may not have the 5G towers or infrastructure… or even 3G or 4G connectivity for that matter. Sounds interesting, although my doubt remains… how much more expensive would this connectivity-feature be?

Featured Image via MacRumors

This iPhone Magsafe charger comes with a wireless attachment that doubles as your backup power bank!

Chau is a new modular charger that comes with a charging dock station and wireless charger the size of a pop socket so you can charge on the go without the bulk of portable charging packs.

Leaving the house at 25% always feels like a gamble. When our phones aren’t fully charged, we know we’ll have to compromise our precious screen time if we plan on Ubering home at the end of the night. Wireless chargers come in handy, but their bulkiness makes it feel like lugging around another iPhone altogether. Designer Seo Youngeun collaborated with Designer Dot to conceptualize a wireless iPhone charger called Chau that adds as much bulk to your smartphone as a pop socket.

Chau is a wireless charger that can be either mobile or stationary. Much like wireless chargers already on the market, Chau comes in two parts: a wireless charger and its charging dock. The charging dock can be plugged into any outlet and features two charging stations for Apple products. The raised charging station holds the auxiliary charger in place so users can either leave their phone to charge on the dock or dislodge the auxiliary charger from its magnetic port and charge on the go. Working from home, we don’t have all of the supplemental charging accessories that fill up the office and our appliances with juice. Chau is designed especially for new WFH circumstances, where we move from one room to the next with our iPhones in tow and our chargers left behind. With Chau, our iPhones can always have access to some extra battery juice.

Besides the wireless charging port, Chau features a flat charging surface similar to Apple’s MagSafe Charger that can charge any EDC Apple product from your Apple Watch to your AirPods. Made from silicone and coated in varying shades of matte plastic, Chau has a similar texture to that of other Apple charging products. Having Chau in your home office will help streamline our workdays and keep our iPhones running as long as we are.

Designer: Seo Youngeun x Designer Dot

Before settling on Chau’s final form, Seo Youngeun went through multiple ideations.

Chau is compact by design so it can fit on any desk or in any workspace.

Chau allows for landscape positioning so you can stream or watch movies while charging. 

Chau’s flat charging surface lets users charge their EDC Apple items like AirPods and Apple Watches. 

Chau’s modular auxiliary charger comes with its own charging ports so users can charge it while away from home. 

Seo Youngeun adapted Apple’s silicone and matte plastic design language for Chau.

Chau’s charging dock can standalone and remain fully charged in place on your desk. 

Coming in an array of different colors, Chau adds some color to your home office. 

This iPhone case integrates a pair of ultra-thin reading glasses into its design to ensure you never lose your EDC items!

Picture this. You’re out at a friend’s place (seems implausible given this ridiculous pandemic, but bear with me) and you’ve got contacts on and it turns out you need to spend the night. You’ve got nowhere to stash the lenses so you decide to ditch them, but you forgot to carry your spectacles too. Or imagine you’re traveling someplace and your contact lens relocates inside your eye (or pops out) and suddenly you’re visually compromised because contact lenses are the goddamn worst. Would be nice to have spectacles handy, right? Well, with the Read On iPhone Case by Sol Sol Ito, you don’t have to worry about losing your lenses, because this nifty iPhone case comes with its own pair of glasses docked inside it.

Industrial designer Sandra Kaufmann and artist Monika Fink first attempted to design a pair of lightweight sunglasses that could be folded to save space. Leaning on the inherent foldability of eyewear, Kaufmann and Fink designed a pair of folding reading glasses that are slim enough to slip into the back of a phone case for storage. Reaching a total height of only 4mm when folded, Read On glasses hardly add any size to the accompanying iPhone case, only a slightly raised finger grip. The polished correction glass is only 3.7mm thick, allowing the slight overhang of the frames to protect the glasses from scratching when tucked in and out of their slot. The brackets’ design also allows the glasses to be folded down to one plane, enhancing their slim construction.

Whether you’ve had to ditch your contact lenses, or you’re in a dimly lit restaurant, or need to read the washing directions on clothes tags, Read On makes reading the fine print that much easier. With Read On, the days of scrambling around the house looking for your glasses with five minutes to spare are over. Integrating a pair of reading glasses into the build of an iPhone case keeps your glasses on hand without the extra bulk and time spent looking for them. Sure, you forfeit the ability to be able to wirelessly charge your iPhone with the case on, but it’s a small price to pay for having clear vision, isn’t it?

Designer: Sol Sol Ito

The discreet storage compartment for reading glasses appears as only a slightly raised finger grip.

The reading glasses have a unique design that allows them to fold down onto a single plane.

The reading glasses feature Sol Sol Ito’s lengthy, signature temples.

The reading glasses are simple and slim to slip easily into the iPhone case and get their job done.

Read On’s case features slots for the iPhone’s microphones and charging ports.

Reaching a maximum height of 4mm when folded, Read On’s glasses are built on a slim design.

Read On’s unique brackets protect a 3.7mm thick lens that allows them to fold into one plane.