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iPhone accessory buyers' guide

Accessories aplenty for US iPhone buyers

With the hype surrounding Apple's iPhone reaching critical mass on June 29 in the US, Apple wants to ensure third-party vendors sell accessories engineered to work properly with its multimedia mobile phone.

Apple said on its website that accessories and products certified to work with the iPhone will carry the ‘Works with iPhone’ logo on the packaging. Although the iPhone may cause audio interference with some iPod accessories, it will have the same 30-pin dock connector as the iPod, so many accessories can be used with both the iPhone and iPods, Apple said on the site.

In January, Apple announced it would make available several iPhone accessories, including a compact Bluetooth headset called the Apple iPhone Bluetooth Headset. The company didn't return calls seeking further details.

In an FAQ section of its site, the company said most Bluetooth headsets will also work with the iPhone. Apple also said the iPhone would carry a 3.5mm headphone jack, making it compatible with most stereo headphones.

Despite the secretive nature of the iPhone's development, third-party vendors seem prepared for the launch, offering accessories including headsets, screen protectors and cases.

Available alongside the iPhone at Apple stores will be Aliph's $119.99 (£60) Jawbone Bluetooth headset with Noise Shield, a headset that uses a noise-cancellation system originally developed for the US military. The Jawbone makes phone conversations clearer by adjusting volume and cutting incoming and outgoing background noise.

The hands-free headset harnesses the richness of the iPhone's screen and multimedia capabilities to provide the ultimate communications experience, said Hosain Rahman, CEO and founder of Aliph. "People are doing a lot more on their mobile phones than before, and demanding a higher level of innovation," he said. The Jawbone delivers the award-winning design and high-quality voice cancellation technology necessary for users to get the most out of the iPhone, he said.

Also available alongside the iPhone at AT&T retail stores on launch day will be Digital Lifestyle Outfitters' two protective cases for the iPhone - the Jam Jacket for iPhone and the HipCase for iPhone - designed to make the device accessible while protecting it from the elements.

The Jam Jacket, made of lint-resistant silicone, allows direct access to iPhone controls, dock connector, headphone jack and touch-sensitive screen. The case can also store headsets on its back. The $24.99 (£12.50) case will be available in four colours - black, blue, pink and frost. The $34.99 (£17.50) HipCase is a belt clip made out of leather and Velcro that allows users to store their iPhone on a belt. Users will get one-touch access to the iPhone and the headset jack will be directly accessible to listen to music. Both cases are compatible with the 4GB and 8GB iPhones.


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