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Several highlights from this year’s walk of the floor at the Macworld Expo in San Francisco, California:

  • olloclip’s new 4-in-1 camera lens for iPhone and iPod Touch. I’m not sure how useful the fisheye lens will be, but the wide-angle and macro lenses should make for some fascinating imagery. Eager to try it out more.
  • Transporter Sync allows users to create their own private cloud. Attach a hard drive, sync your devices, and you have your own private version of DropBox with massive storage no annual fees.
  • CrazyTalk 7 animates pictures to the words you speak, letting make realistic talking animals, cartoons, and so on. It demoed very well.
  • Kanex was on hand with the standard compliment of high quality adapters and devices. I’ve used their ATV Pro and was impressed with the build quality. You may not need what they’re offering, but if you do, their stuff is excellent in my experience.
  • My favorite iOS app of the Expo was undoubtedly Chore-inator. Designed for parents to remind and reward kids for doing their household chores, the $2.99 app syncs via DropBox to keep everybody—parents and kids—on the same page about what’s been done and what still needs doing.
  • Flir’s FlirOne thermal sensor for iPhone looks useful, but I think the ~$350 price tag moves it out of the reach of most consumers. Can see it being a popular item for contractors, electricians, plumbers, though.
  • Testing the proposition that people want to print from their iPad or iPhone (and are willing to pay $100 to do it) comes the Lantronix xPrintServer iOS. It looks great and was a “Best of Show” winner back in 2012, so I’ve no doubt that if printing from iPhone or iPad is something you want to do, xPrintServer iOS enable you to do it.
  • BusyMac, makers of BusyCal (my favorite Mac calendaring app), announced BusyContacts at the show. It won’t be ready until later this year, but I’m already drooling. As a person with a fair number of contacts (around 1250), I have a love/hate relationship with Apple’s Contacts. It works okay, but could and should be so much better. BusyContacts appears to fulfill that promise, and I await it eagerly.

Overall, I had rather low expectations going into Macworld, but I’d say I was pleasantly surprised by the products, a number of which I purchased or will purchase once available.