Mashable: Latest 12 News Updates - including “Apple Now World’s Most Valuable Brand [STUDY]”

Mashable: Latest 12 News Updates - including “Apple Now World’s Most Valuable Brand [STUDY]”


Apple Now World’s Most Valuable Brand [STUDY]

Posted: 09 May 2011 04:32 AM PDT


Not only did Apple surpass Microsoft in market capitalization to become the second most valuable U.S. company in 2010, it also superseded Google to become the most valuable consumer-facing brand in the world, according to a study published by global research agency Millward Brown.

Apple’s brand value jumped 84% to $153.3 billion, driven largely by the company’s success with the iPad and iPhone 4, the study found. Google’s brand declined 2% to $111.5 billion. IBM, Microsoft and Coca-Cola rounded out the top five.

With a 246% increase in brand value to $19.1 billion — the greatest leap of any company in the survey — Facebook made its debut on the top 100 chart at number 35. Baidu, the leading search engine in China, was the second-fastest climber at 141%, placing it at number 29.

Other notable findings: Amazon (#14) overtook Walmart (#15) to become the most valuable retail brand in the world at $37.6 billion; Toyota once again became the most valuable car brand; and 12 of the top 100 brands in 2010 came from China.

Brands’ values were determined by a mix of factors, including future earnings (discounted to their present-day values) and in-depth consumer surveys, Millawrd Brown says. For further information, see the full report.


The 50 Most Valuable Brands


More About: apple, Baidu, branding, brandz, facebook, Google, MARKETING, millward brown

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Mashable Weekend Recap: 17 Stories You May Have Missed

Posted: 09 May 2011 03:56 AM PDT


The whirlwind of international news events gave us a busy week here at Mashable. Even after the sun had set on Friday evening, our readers were still eager to find out whatever they could about Osama Bin Laden.

But lots of other fascinating stuff went on on at the same time, and we covered it all in a variety of posts.

Missed our coverage? We’ve got you covered with this master list of every post from the weekend:

News & Opinion Essentials

Bin Laden Video Released by Pentagon

The 5 Best Gadgets I've Reviewed This Year

This Week in Politics & Digital: Bin Laden Killed, Obama Stays Cool

Infographic: Security Fears Skyrocketing in the U.S.

Kentucky Derby 2011: Can Twitter Pick the Winner?

Helpful Resources

5 Innovative Ways Tech Is Changing Your World

HOW TO: Poll Consumers on Facebook

Top 10 Twitter Trends This Month [CHART]

4 Apps for Getting More Done This Weekend

Mother's Day 2011: 7 Awesome eCards For Mom [PICS]

4 Free Ways to Learn to Code Online

Top 10 Twitter Trends This Week [CHART]

6 Online Resources for Veterans Seeking Jobs

Weekend Leisure

10 Best BlackBerry PlayBook Cases [PICS]

Mind-Boggling Model Airport Is World's Largest [VIDEO]

NFL Lockout: Social Media Users Weigh In [INFOGRAPHIC]

Happy Mother's Day: We Celebrate With Google Doodles [PICS]

More About: osama bin laden, Weekend recap

For more Social Media coverage:


10 Android Apps for Health & Fitness

Posted: 09 May 2011 12:09 AM PDT


Forget summer and swimsuit season; any time is a good time to get in shape. And for Android users, these apps will make that process a little faster, easier and more fun.

Last year, we told you about a few good Android apps to get your lazy butt in gear. But given the rapid evolution of the Android Market, the Android OS and the capabilities and variety of Android hardware, we thought that list needed a little update.

Here are some of the best Android apps for improving your health and fitness, both in terms of diet and exercise. Better still, some of them incorporate games and music to make your workout that much more fun.

In the comments, let us know what Android apps you’re currently using to keep tabs on your health and physical fitness.


Backpacker GPS Trails




Time to get outside, O nerdy one! Backpacker GPS Trails can help you find and explore awesome trails that will improve your health, broaden your horizons, and give you something cool to do with that 8MP camera of yours.


Nike BOOM




If music is your ideal motivator, try Nike BOOM. This app syncs your music to your workouts and throws in some audio-visual motivation from pro coaches and athletes along the way. You got this!


Instant Heart Rate Pro




For tracking just how much fat your body is burning, we suggest an app like Instant Heart Rate. It shows your heart rate measurements, a real-time PPG graph and your heart-rate history.


BMI Calculator




This free BMI Calculator will give you key information for setting or optimizing your fitness goals. And it should work for all but the most muscular of bodies.


Pocket Yoga




If your day could use some deep breathing and flexibility, try Pocket Yoga, which packs 145 poses in the palm of your hand. You can choose from three different practices, difficulty levels and durations for a total of 27 sessions. Namaste!


CrossFit Travel




If you're anything like us, you spend some time on the road for work and/or pleasure. Time on the road, however, means time for you to forget about your workout. CrossFit Travel comes to the rescue with an impressive list of exercises that can be done in a hotel room or other small space.


Squats




This one's for the ladies, and the name says it all. If toning your backside is tantamount to holiness, you'll want to check out Squats. The app will help you reach your goals of a hundred or more squats in a row, and the enviable posterior that comes with such an accomplishment.


Calorie Counter




MyFitnessPal offers this Calorie Counter for keeping track of your nutrition -- an important part of any health regime. This groovy app also comes with a barcode scanner, so you can easily find out exactly what nutrients and no-nos are hiding in pre-packaged foods.


JEFIT Pro




Here's a bodybuilding app for the muscle-bound. JEFIT Pro is a highly-rated app to help you track your progress, time your workouts, and beat your own records, all without the hassle of pen or paper.


SpecTrek




Fitness should be fun, and SpecTrek is the app that proves it. This AR game gets you out and moving around in the real world, hunting "ghosts" using your camera, GPS, and your own quickly-moving feet.


Interested in more Android resources? Check out Mashable Explore, a new way to discover information on your favorite Mashable topics.

More About: android, apps, fitness, health, mobile apps, weight loss

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HOW TO: Set Up a Foursquare Special

Posted: 08 May 2011 10:56 PM PDT


This post originally appeared on the American Express OPEN Forum, where Mashable regularly contributes articles about leveraging social media and technology in small business.

When Foursquare 3.0 launched in March, the app’s entire merchant platform was revamped. The location-based service offered more options for specials — and made it quicker and easier to set them up. To date, more than 250,000 small and large businesses have signed up on Foursquare’s free platform for businesses; many of these have offered specials.

The beauty of a Foursquare special — aside from rewarding your customers and getting them back in the door — is that when users often check out the “Specials Nearby” menu when they first open the app. If they’re within a few blocks of your store and you have a special, you’ll show up in that menu. It’s an excellent, free way to gain exposure, and the platform is flexible and intuitive. There are now seven types of specials available on Foursquare; below you’ll find an explanation of each special, along with some tips to help you get started.


1. Create a Special


Once you’ve claimed your venue on Foursquare, go to Foursquare.com

  • Click on “Manager Tools”
  • Click on “Campaigns”
  • Click on “Start a Campaign”
  • Click on “Add a Special”

The new specials are broken up into two types — five that reward new customers, and two that incentivize existing customers to return.


Swarm Special


You can specify the number of people who need to be checked in to unlock something. For example, an ice cream store can give away a free scoop of ice cream when 10 people are checked in at once. You can set a limit for how frequently this special can be unlocked so that you don’t give away too much product.


Friends Special


A reward for when friends check in together. You can specify how many friends need to be checked in and what they receive for being checked in.


Flash Special


You can set a special so that the first X people who come at X time get a reward. It’s great way to incentivize customers to stop by during your slow hours.


Newbie Special


People who check in to your business for the first time can be awarded a Newbie Special — maybe 10% off or a free side dish, if you own a restaurant. Offering a reward for a user’s first checkin — even if it’s a small one — is a great way to start a relationship with a new customer.


Check-In Special


The Check-In Special offers a reward for every single checkin. Restaurants can offer a free soda or a discount, while retailers might offer $1 off a purchase.


Loyalty Special


The Loyalty Special is an offering for every third, fifth, seventh checkin — you determine the interval — to incentivize customers to return regularly and cash in on their special.


Mayor Special


The mayor is the person who has checked into a venue more than anyone else. In theory, he is your best and most loyal customer. As such, he deserves a prize, whether it’s a discount, a free t-shirt or a meal on the house. Mayors tend to be proud and protective of their mayorship, and you might even see some turf wars when the mayorship changes hands. You can offer something whenever a new mayor earns the crown, or you can offer a daily reward for the mayor.

Now that you’ve seen the offerings, click the special you’d like to do and determine the stipulations that will require people to unlock the special. Then click “Next Step.”


2. Write Your Special


Now you can write the text of the offer. In the “Offer Description” field, you have 200 characters to outline your special. It will populate in real time on the iPhone to the right so you can see what it will look like on someone’s smartphone. Keep it short and simple.

After you enter the text, click “Next Step.” In the field labeled “Fine Print,” type any restrictions or disclaimers for the special. If you want to target your slow times, you can say that the special can be redeemed only from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. or on Monday and Tuesday. Be specific.

Click “Create Special.”


3. Determine the Venues for the Special


Select the venue where you’d like to have this special run. You can have different specials running at different locations, and you can group your locations. If you have three stores in New York and two in Boston, you can create a “group” of New York venues and a group for Boston, and then each group can have its own specials. Or, each location can offer something different — Foursquare gives you total control. Also note that you can have multiple specials running simultaneously. If it’s a limited-time offer, remember to put an end date for the campaign. Once you click “Start Campaign,” the special is live. (However, it will not show up in the “Specials Nearby” menu until someone on the Foursquare team verifies that the special is legitimate and abide by the terms of service. This usually happens within 24 hours.)


4. Educate the Staff


Once you create your special, Foursquare provides links for a flyer that you can download to explain to your employees how Foursquare and specials work. The most important thing for employees to know is that an unlocked special is color while a yet-to-be-unlocked special is black and white.

More About: foursquare

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Two Web Apps We Love Are Up For Sale, Who’ll Buy Streak.ly & Facto.me?

Posted: 08 May 2011 08:39 PM PDT


A little bird just told us two interesting web apps from an admirable developer are up for grabs.

Creator Kyle Bragger, who also cranked out killer dev/design web app Forrst, is looking for a buyer for these applications.

Last year, we told you about two great consumer web apps. Streak.ly is a motivational tool that helps you knock out your daily tasks. The app uses badges and other incentives to make a game out of accomplishing your goals.

The other app is Facto.me, a fun and addictive tool for sharing facts about yourself. This one reminded us a lot of Formspring; both of these apps neatly toe the line between pure navel-gazing vanity and truly social interaction online.

So why is Bragger letting these two enjoyable, well-made apps go? We’re guessing he simply doesn’t have time to maintain and market them, given the success of Forrst.

Forrst seems to have been taking up much of Bragger’s attention lately. In December, the site launched a virtual currency and credits system called Acorns, and traffic on the site has seen a steady uptick since then, as well.

On his personal blog, Bragger writes, “Neither [Streak.ly nor Facto.me] have received the love and attention they deserve as of late, but maybe you can change that. Both have received a nice amount of exposure and have users in the mid-thousands; both are (were) enjoyable projects to work on and certainly have bigger potential were the right person (or team) to be at the helm.”

A previous Bragger creation, location app Placefav, was acquired by WheresCool.com in 2009. His productivity app Done.io was handed over to Inevitable Corp. about a year ago, as well.

It’s interesting to watch a prolific and on-trend developer work his way through these products, and we’re interested to know where they’ll end up next.

More About: facto.me, forrst, kyle bragger, streak.ly, streakly

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48 New Digital Media Resources You May Have Missed

Posted: 08 May 2011 05:30 PM PDT

icons image

The news cycle this week has been unstoppable, with major events from international politics to British royalty dominating the conversation.

This week saw the marriage of Prince William to Kate Middleton, U.S. tornadoes, the death of Osama Bin Laden, and of course, this weekend’s big event: Mother’s Day.

With all the hubbub, we understand if you missed a story or two from Mashable’s trove of tools and resources published over the past week or so. This week, we have resources on bin Laden as well as our regular social media-focused tools such as PR tips for Facebook, business and marketing case studies, and the evolution of Twitter.

Looking for even more social media resources? This guide appears every weekend, and you can check out all the lists-gone-by here any time.


Editors’ Picks



Social Media


For more social media news and resources, you can follow Mashable’s social media channel on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook.


Tech & Mobile


For more tech news and resources, you can follow Mashable’s tech channel on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook.


Business & Marketing


For more business news and resources, you can follow Mashable’s business channel on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook.

Image courtesy of WebTreats Etc.

More About: business, facebook, Features Week In Review, gadgets, List, Lists, Mobile 2.0, social good, social media, tech, technology, twitter

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5 of Our Favorite Gadgets So Far This Year

Posted: 08 May 2011 03:26 PM PDT


I’ve reviewed a lot of gadgets and technology here at Mashable since the beginning of the year, and now it’s time to figure out which ones I liked the best. I’ve narrowed it down to the top five.

Which devices would I actually go out and buy for myself? Here’s the all-star list, and each of the items proved itself in extensive testing to be superior and unique. There’s not a stinker in the bunch.


World’s Quietest PC: I went on a worldwide search for the quietest computer on the planet, but it couldn’t just be quiet. It had to be enormously powerful too. Enter the Puget Systems Serenity PC, equipped with the latest Core 2 quad-core processor. It’s fast, it’s efficient, it’s so quiet that you can’t even hear a peep out of it — even if you put your ear right next to it. I liked it so much I ordered one for myself. It’s completely deserving of the network name I gave it: ChurchMouse — but it’s the church mouse that roared. Quietly.


Fanny Wang On Ear Wangs: Would it bother you to wear a pair of headphones called Fanny Wang? Never mind the name — as soon as you clap these cans on your noggin and crank up the volume, your jaw will drop. They bring along an incidental benefit: an extra jack on the cable, making it easy to connect an additional pair of headphones, making the experience a lot less solitary. When I buy these for myself, I think I’m choosing the black color (with red trim) rather than this candy-apple red, but one thing’s for sure, for $170, you get a decent value with these great-sounding cans.


Chumby8: What the heck is a Chumby? It’s a network-attached app player with its own library of more than 1500 applications. This new Chumby8‘s 8-inch screen is much larger than its brandmates, and serves either as a huge and sophisticated alarm clock, or a screen you can place in your living room and display all manner of crazy clocks, weather reports, Flickr pictures, and a whole lot more. Nope, it’s not an iPad, but this $199 touchscreen quickly endears itself to you. This was one of the hardest review units to send back.


iPad 2: What gushing prose hasn’t been written about the iPad 2? It’s thinner, lighter and more beautiful than its predecessor, and it does everything faster. One thing I haven’t seen anyone write about it yet is that its brushed aluminum back is improved over last year’s iPad, to the point where it’s so smooth and silky it almost feels like human skin. I’m no Apple fanboy, but I was eager to plunk down a few of my own C-notes for this baby, and I’m glad I did.


Altec Lansing inMotion Air Wireless Audio System: The iPad 2 is not quite magical, but when you connect it to this wireless audio system, suddenly you’re holding onto some serious magic. There’s something wonderful about playing music through an iPad or iPhone into a wireless speaker, particularly when it sounds as great is the inMotion Air. It’s small enough to be compact, yet large enough to drive some punchy bass, mellifluous midrange and crispy highs. And its modern asymmetrical design fits right in with our quirky decor.

More About: Altec-Lansing, bluetooth, Chumby8, Fanny Wang, gadgets, inmotion, iPad 2, Puget Systems serenity PC, Review Roundup, reviews, trending

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HOW TO: Poll Consumers on Facebook

Posted: 08 May 2011 01:02 PM PDT

vote image

This post originally appeared on the American Express OPEN Forum, where Mashable regularly contributes articles about leveraging social media and technology in small business.

We’ve all seen those Facebook polls asking you what Disney Princess you most resemble. However, you can turn those inane surveys into something valuable for your business or brand.

Facebook polls and surveys can be a great way to engage your fans with questions that build loyalty or provide you with valuable feedback. Facebook is often touted for its ability to create a community, but too often brands let those online communities lie fallow on their fan pages. It’s not enough to send a stream of updates without listening to what your fans (your invaluable evangelists and consumers) have to say.

To help, we collected some simple ways to poll your consumers on Facebook, as well as a mini-list of best practices. Once you start polling, let us know what worked for you in the comments below.


Tools and Resources


poll image

Facebook Questions is the in-house poll service from Facebook. Located at the top of your wall and below your profile pic, Questions lets you customize polls in a manner of ways. You can submit an open-ended question or click on the “Add Poll Options” tab to create a custom multiple-choice poll. You can add up to three options. Pro tip: You can link those responses to groups or individuals on Facebook by tagging the name with an “@” when you start typing. This is handy if you want to drive people to your various options.

While you can’t limit your question to a specific demographic (i.e., the question is broadcast to the entire Facebook community to answer), individual Facebook Pages can ask Page-specific questions. To do this, simply click on the “Questions” tab at the top of the Page’s wall. Still stuck? Check out Facebook’s official FAQ.

Poll is an app, meaning you’ll have to allow it access to your account. Poll operates a lot like Facebook Questions (above), but it has some extra options for tracking your respondents, purchasing premium features like ad blocking, and the ability to hide header tabs. It also allows you to add more than three options to your customized questions. That may not seem like much, but Poll has attracted more than 2 million active users so far, and corporations such as ABC, 20th Century Fox, Nintendo, Pepsi and Wimbledon have used the app.

Poll for Facebook is a free service with a slew of options including the ability to include a poll title, introduction text and advanced features such as creating a custom URL and privacy options. You can specify if you want answers as multiple choice, text or a comment thread. You can modify the appearance further by using HTML tags or adding a tab to your YouTube page. Premium users can add images, too. Poll for Facebook is the most customizable and easiest to use of the available options, attracting major corporate users like the Food Network, the Baltimore Ravens and Clarins Paris to the service.

Poll Daddy Polls offer another take on customization. From the “Create a Poll Tab” you can add an image, customize multiple answers, and select where you want the poll to be posted. It’s simple and to the point, even if it has just 300,000 active users, making it relatively small when compared to its brethren.

Status Updates can be used in place of the more feature-rich polling apps discussed above. If you’re just after some quick, informal engagement with your fans, consider simply asking a question via your page status.


Basic Tips


Once you set up your poll using one of the options above, here are some simple best practices for deciding how and what to ask.

  • Ask a real question. People on the Internet are great at sniffing out when you really are interested in their response and just asking a question because it’s been a while. Don’t ask questions that are just self-promotional. Something like “What product of ours do you love the most!?” isn’t going to go over well.
  • Ask question you actually want answers to. In the same vein, if you’re going to ask questions, come up with something that will help your business. Try to get constructive feedback about your products or ask what your customer would like to see more of. If you’re a musician for example, try asking what kind of bonuses your fans prefer (backstage pass, free tickets, advanced orders, etc.) and then offer the highest-voted perk.
  • Ask questions that are topical or relevant. This is a tricky one. Try to find memes and keywords that are both in the news and relevant to your brand. It’s one thing to poll your audience on what they think of Charlie Sheen, but they could be turned off if that has nothing to do with your business or products. Kenneth Cole gave us a pretty good example of what not to do.
  • Be clear why you’re polling. Decide what you want out of your poll: Are you looking for more loyalty, honest feedback, brand exposure? Having this in mind will give you focus and make your polls more useful for your business. If you’re looking for exposure, ask yourself if your poll is something that your fans would share with their own friends. Facebook is great for spreading your message — but only if it’s a message worth spreading.

Interested in more Business resources? Check out Mashable Explore, a new way to discover information on your favorite Mashable topics.

Image courtesy of iStockphoto, huskerchen


More About: business, facebook, MARKETING, online poll, poll, social media

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Mind-Boggling Model Airport Is World’s Largest [VIDEO]

Posted: 08 May 2011 12:34 PM PDT



The world’s largest miniature airport is now open to the public in Hamburg, Germany. This $5 million masterpiece, six years in the making, captures every detail of the real thing. You have to watch this video to believe it.

In what must be the world’s most intricate and detailed gadget, the model includes realistically crafted and painted airplanes that appear to be landing and taking off, cars, trucks and buses parking and driving around, and lit-up runways that look almost real.

It’s part of the Miniatur Wunderland, an astonishing model and tourist attraction that replicates a variety of landscapes and landmarks around the world, and it’s the world’s largest model of its kind.

Construction of the Lilliputian world began in 2000, and before this airport was added, the original model took up 16,146 square feet of space with more than 10,000 train cars running around its 6.8 miles of HO-scale track. The original construction cost $10 million, and plans are in the works to double the size of the layout by 2014.

This video will give you an overview of this spectacular tourist attraction:



More About: Hamburg, Miniatur Wunderland, model railroad, trending, video

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5 Innovative Ways Tech Is Changing Your World

Posted: 08 May 2011 11:35 AM PDT


Computers, mobile phones and robots are just a few life-changing inventions we tend to take for granted every day. These technologies, however, have enabled us to improve human life by leaps and bounds over the past few decades.

Here are five stories we’ve recently published that showcase how these technologies are changing communities around the world.

Of course, if you're still hungry for more stories on innovative ways that technology is changing the way we live, you can follow Mashable's Global Innovation Series, which brings you the latest innovations in urban mobility and is supported by BMW i, a new concept dedicated to providing mobility solutions for the urban environment. Happy reading!


What Innovations Are Improving Your Community?


Do you know of a forward-thinking startup or technology that deserves to be a part of the Global Innovation Series? Let us know about it in the comments below.

Image courtesy of Flickr, LGEPR

More About: Global Innovation Series, roundup, tech, technology, trending

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NFL Lockout: Social Media Users Weigh In [INFOGRAPHIC]

Posted: 08 May 2011 10:45 AM PDT

Will there be a lockout for the 2011 NFL season? Will there even be any professional (American) football played this Fall? Lab42 asked 500 social media users for their opinions in a survey conducted between April 26 of April 28, 2011, and they reported receiving “some very interesting, very passionate responses.”


Graphic courtesy Lab42

More About: infographic, Lab 42, NFL lockout, social media users

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Happy Mother’s Day: We Celebrate With Google Doodles [PICS]

Posted: 08 May 2011 09:45 AM PDT

The second Sunday in May is when the United States, Canada and a great many other countries around the world honor their mothers, celebrate motherhood and thank moms for all they do.

Since 2000 Google has marked the occasion every year with one of its infamous Google “Doodles,” transforming the classic homepage to a tribute to moms everywhere.

We’ve looked back this Mothering Sunday over a decade of mom-themed Doodles. Take a look through our gallery below and let us know which Doodle you’d like to dedicate to your mom in the comments below or via one of the share options to the top left.


2011





For this year, Google goes with a lovely yet simple design.


2010 -- United States




Last year saw a great Google homepage for the United States made up of quirky glass vases...


2010 -- Global




...While the rest of the world enjoyed a tulip-themed effort.


2009




The logo was pretty in pink in 2009 with a lovely bunch of blooms making up the "l."


2008




This sweet scene sees a mother duck and two chicks decorating the famous logo.


2007




Children's hand-drawn pictures are a cute touch on 2007's Mother's Day Doodle.


2006




Google said it with roses and entwined "os" back in '06.


2005




The search giant keeps the floral theme going in 2005.


2004




A single pink rose adorns 2004's offering.


2003




Another Mother's Day, another vase of posies, again neatly taking the place of the "l."


2002




A single red rose was Google's offering to moms everywhere in 2002.


2001 & 2000




The original Mother's Day Google Doodle appeared in the year 2000 and remained unchanged the next year. It linked to a tribute page to the then Googler's moms.


A Tribute to Our Moms




And here is a grab of part of that page, still live today at Google.com/moms. With the sweet statement that "no search could find better moms than these," Google illustrated the lyrics of Howard Johnson's song M-O-T-H-E-R with portraits. Aw!

More About: design, galleries, gallery, Google, google doodles, List, Lists, logo design, logos, mothering sunday, mothers day, trending

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10 Best BlackBerry PlayBook Cases [PICS]

Posted: 08 May 2011 08:34 AM PDT

RIM’s BlackBerry PlayBook is the latest portable touchscreen launch on the consumer electronics scene sold as the “world’s first professional-grade tablet,” but have accessory-makers stepped up to offer cases to match?

While RIM kindly bundles a simple sleeve in the PlayBook’s box, we’ve found 10 alternative cases, covers, skins and sleeves either made for, or suitable for use with the PlayBook, for anyone who has snapped up one of the RIM-made tablets and wants to protect it with something a little different.

If you’re in the market for a cover for your new super-sized ‘Berry then take a look through the photo gallery of available choices and let us know about any other options you’ve seen around in the comments below.


1. RIM Leather Envelope




RIM offers a decent range of official cases, but the highlight for us has to be this "Envelope" design. Made of leather with a magnetic closure, the RIM logo on the flap is just the right side of branded to look official without making you a poster-boy for the company.

Cost: $59.99


2. Incipio Feather





Incipio offers two minimalist cases for the PlayBook, but the "feather," measuring less than 1mm thick, wins the prize for the most low-profile protection. The form-fitting polycarbonate shell will shield your tablet from everyday wear and tear without adding too much bulk.

Cost: $34.99


3. Case-Mate Pop! Case




Available in black, grey and pink, Case-Mate's tailor-made Pop! offers your PlayBook a fold out stand, soft lining, plastic shell protection and rubber sides for good grip.

Cost: $39.99


4. rooCASE Super Bubble Sleeve




Actually designed to fit the Kindle 3, rooCase's Super Bubble Sleeve with its 8.8" x 6.1" x 1" dimensions will easily encapsulate your PlayBook's 7.6" x 5.1" x 0.4" sizings. Offering all-over neoprene protection, it's the ideal case to cover your PlayBook with before you sling it into your bag.

Cost: Approx $15


5. DODOcase




DODOcase has extended its popular range of book-themed iPad covers to encompass RIM's tablet. Made using traditional book binding techniques, the DODOcase doubles as a stand, offering access to all ports and is available with red, blue, green and charcoal lining.

Cost: $59.95


6. Sena Jornal




The Jornal from Sena offers classic leather finish with a cheeky stripe of color --- either orange on black, red on black or cream on red. As well as good looks it boasts two-position stand functionality and slimline pockets for credit cards and the like.

Cost: $89.99


7. OtterBox Defender Series Case




As with all OtterBox's offerings, its Defender Series case for the PlayBook is suited to those who need belt-and-braces protection from bumps, shocks, drops and dust.

Cost: $69.99


8. Targus Zierra Leather Portfolio




Targus offers a couple of cases for the PlayBook, but we've picked the Portfolio option to feature as it offers traditional business-folk looks and functionality that we think will appeal to many users of RIM's enterprise-suitable tablet.

Cost: $54.99


9. CaseCrown Regal Flip Case




CaseCrown's classic flip case is perfect for anyone who wants leather looks but is stuck with a synthetic budget. It offers simple clip-in-and-go coverage with a flip fold cover.

Cost: $26.95


10. Piel Frama iMagnum




Finally, if you're looking for something a little different, then Spain's Peil Frama offers hand-made leather cases in a range of bold colors custom-created to fit the PlayBook. Although not cheap by all means, the cases offer a good balance between protection and style with inner plastic hardshell contruction covered in cowhide.

Cost: 120 Euros (approx $180)

More About: accessories, blackberry, blackberry playbook, cases, gallery, List, Lists, RIM, tablets, tech, trending

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