Wednesday, April 28, 2010
iPad Camera Connection Kit
One of the Camera Connection Kit's two dongles has a USB port for connecting almost any digital camera via its USB cable (the other has an SD card slot). Connecting a camera or other device that reports itself as a digital camera, including an iPhone, will allow you to download full-resolution images into the iPad's Photos app.
However, experimentation has reveled that other USB devices will work with an iPad as well. Confirming earlier rumors, TidBITS reported that some USB audio devices, like speakers, headsets, and microphones will also work when attached to the USB dongle. Headsets work especially well with Skype for VoIP calls, according to TidBITS. It's expected, though untested, that USB microphones commonly used for recording podcasts or other audio should also work with audio recording applications.
In addition to USB audio devices, TUAW reported that one user was able to plug in a USB keyboard and type text, just as if a Bluetooth keyboard or an iPad Keyboard Dock were being used. This capability doesn't seem especially useful compared to a portable Bluetooth keyboard, but it's there if you need it.
The compact $29 iPhone Stereo Headset includes a decent mic and earphones. Bluetooth earpieces, headphones, and headsets also work with the iPad. And the built-in mic and speakers on the iPad when used with Skype or other audio chat programs make it into something better than most speakerphones I've used.