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An iPod Could be a Woman’s Best Friend

All it takes are a few accessories and some music to share

Published: May, 2005

Men buy more iPods than women. It makes perfect sense when you think about it, because men have more time to play with ripping, burning and moving music, and polishing their playlists.

If women play catch up it will be because there are finally enough accessories that make the iPod worth spending the time and money for. Just like with computing, when it comes to their iPods, women are happier sharing. Here are a few accessories that provide mood music for wherever life takes you. Whether you want to share the soft background music of a romantic dinner, a head-nodding car trip here’s how you can lose those earpods and share the music.

At home your little iPod can make a really big sound and you’ll be able to replace that leaning tower of stereo equipment with a stylishly clean, great sounding substitute. Fill a room, fill a house or fill your head with sound.


Space conscious podders will enjoy Altec Lansing’s inMotion IM3 www.alteclansing.com . It’s the size of paper back book and runs on normal batteries, yet the four micro sized speakers provide a rich roomful of sound. A remote control means you don’t have to leave the sofa to skip a mood breaking song. Toss the inMotion into your weekend bag and you can finally leave those CD notebooks behind. Priced at $179.

The Bose SoundDock ($299) combines Bose legendary speaker design with a handsome docking station that charges and synchs your iPod. Though it’s not the most portable of the docking stations, it’s has an attention to design detail and rich, full sound that make it an item anyone would showcase with pride. ( www.bose.com )

Design aficionados will ooh and ahh over JBL’s Onstage, a 7 inch wide, donut shaped arrangement that houses a docking station and some marvelous sounding speakers. Also not as portable as the IM3 and won’t run without being plugged in (no battery option). www.jbl.com

By next year the world of iPOD will be wireless. Already there are a few bleeding edge products like Ten Technology’s NaviPlay. NaviPlay relies on Bluetooth technology which means you can tuck your iPOD safely in a desk drawer at home, but carry a small Bluetooth remote receiver to listen to and control your music. By next holiday wireless speakers should be plentiful. ( www.tentechnology.com )

If you already have a state of the art home stero or home theatre system and your iPod is feeling a bit out of the loop, Sonance, has an answer. Working with a network of custom installers they’ll add their Sonance iPort to your already wired (CAT5) home system. ( www.sonance.com )

iPOD On the Road

The car is another place that you want filled with iPOD sound, in this case because it’s illegal and dangerous to drive with headphones on. You’ve got some choices ranging from gerryrigging a system to buying a car that includes a full iPod stereo system.

The poor woman’s car solution is the iTrip from Griffin Technologies. ($35) ( http://griffintechnology.com/products ) It’s a small t-shaped device that plugs into the top of the iPod and contains a tiny FM transmitter. You broadcast your iPod through your car’s radio. Early iTrips suffered from poor transmission; the new version is improved, but you’ll still fiddle with the frequencies on your radio dial to find one that’s static free, and you’ll still have a less satisfying experience in places with over-saturated airwaves (cities) or with poor radio reception.

To protect your iPod from the bumps of the road there are more elaborate systems like Griffin’s RoadTrip and DLO’s TransPod that actually mount the iPod and recharge it; SmartDeck uses your car’s cassette player rather than the radio to control your tunes.

For a more permanent installation Monster iCruze offers an auto docking station that connects directly to your car stereo and costs about $250. I know it sounds like a stock car, but Monster actually makes computer cables. The manufacturers strongly suggest a professional installation. (www.monstercable.com)

This year’s ultimate solution is the car that BMW and Apple recently announced ( www.iPodyourBMW.com ) the first integrated car system. You can use the controls on your steering wheel to control the iPod in the glovebox.

GOIN’ MOBILE

No car? No problem. If you have the nerve you can roam around town toting an DLO Direct’s iBoom ($149) — which looks like a boombox with a little docking space to hold your iPod . It runs off batteries and puts out a big sound. Use at the beach or on the backyard deck; avoid playing at full volume on crowded city streets. ($150). ( http://www.dlodirect.com/iboom.html )