It’s been another memorable year for Apple and one packed with great releases. The company introduced the iPad 2, it updated the Mac mini, MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, iPod nano and iPod touch, released the iPhone 4S, and launched iOS 5 and iCloud.
The market in accessories for Apple products is also bigger than ever, which with Christmas coming up is great news. If you’re after the perfect gift to accompany your family and friends’ Apple devices look no further.
We’ve rounded up the best for each budget; from stocking fillers to more pricey gifts, for those of you looking for something really special.
Parallels Desktop 7 for Mac
If you need to run Windows and Mac OS X on Apple hardware, Parallels is an impressive tool to help make this easy. Run Windows applications on a Mac, drag and drop between Mac and Windows applications running side by side, and more. You can even virtualise Lion within Lion. If you already own a previous version of Parallels for Mac, you can upgrade for £34.99.
The Incipio OffGrid for iPhone 4/4S weighs just 56g and is just 6mm think. It offers up to double the battery life for your iPhone, while providing protection for your device. The power/status button and blue lights indicate the charge level of the OffGrid, and allow the user to turn the external battery on or off whenever they like. Know someone that’s complaining about their iPhone’s battery life? Help them out with this handy gift.
BeeWi Bluetooth Mini Cooper
This entertaining and rather clever gift is a remote control car that you can steer using your smartphone. Simply download the BeeWi ControlPad app to your iPhone, iPod touch or iPad, and you can use it like a steering wheel, by turning your iDevice in the direction you’d like your car to head.
Adobe Photoshop Elements 10
This popular photo-editing program is perfect for photographers who want a bit more creative power and scope to experiment with their images. It’s easy to use, and has an impressive range of artistic and photographic effects, including the new pencil sketch and oil pastel effects that make your photos look like hand-drawn sketches. There’s also a bundle available that includes Adobe Premiere Elements 10 for £119.
mophie juice pack powerstation
With a charging output of up to 2 amps, mophie’s juice pack powerstation provides that extra battery boost for most USB-powered mobile devices, including iPads, iPods, and portable gaming devices. The handy LED indicator lets you know if the powerstation’s battery is full, so you’re not caught out in the middle of your travels with no power.
Price: From £62
HyperDrive has come up with this two-way storage solution for iOS devices and Macs. Choose between an 8GB, 16GB and 32GB iFlashDrive. Use it in conjunction with the iFlashDrive app to store, view and manage files on an iPad, iPhone and iPod touch, plus access file-management functions such as create, copy, move and delete. With a USB connector on one side and an Apple-approved 30-pin dock connector on the other side of the iFlashDrive, it’s a quick and easy way to transfer files between an iOS device and a Mac.
Maxell Air Voltage Wireless Qi Charging Mat and Qi Charging Sleeve
Price: Mat £59.99; Sleeve £36.99
These accessories could prove invaluable as they’ll let you charge an iPhone 4/4S without having to plug it in or place it in a docking station. Simply slot the iPhone into the Sleeve, and then place it on the Mat to charge your handset without using any wires. The Sleeve also doubles as a protective case, so you don’t have to remove it. This means you could, for example, position the Mat in a convenient place and simply pop your phone on it as you walk past to charge it.
BookBook for MacBook Air
Handmade to look like a vintage book, this case is one for book-loving MacBook Air owners. Made from genuine leather, the case has two rigid hardback covers to protect an Air from bumps and scratches, while a tough spine and reinforced corners add another layer of defence. For even more peace of mind that your MacBook is safe, the BookBook has soft padded cushions inside, and two soft elastic bands to keep your Mac in place while you use it, and all can be safely zipped away when you’re travelling.