Products

Kwilt Shoebox Plus by Jenn Chan

Kwilt Shoebox Plus
Kwilt Shoebox Plus

The Kwilt Shoebox Plus has JUST launched, and is a device that creates a private, personal cloud where you can offload photos and videos to clear off space from your smartphones securely. You can easily access your files anytime, and anywhere via the app.

I was lucky enough to be able to test out one of the units, and I’ve got to say, after all the set up and registration, it was a breeze to use and upload files off my iphone to the device. Seeing as I snap lots of photos and videos daily, I’m so thankful to be able to clear off some space instead of having to make the hard decision of what to delete! (we have all been there!) The part I like most is knowing that all my files are secured and only able to be accessed by me.

All you have to do for set up is:

  1. Power up your Shoebox device, and connect to your WIFI connection

  2. Connect your USB Memory Card (it comes with a 64GB drive)

  3. Download the Kwilt mobile app (sign up for an account & log in)

The Kwilt Shoebox Plus is priced at $119. The Kwilt Shoebox Plus is platform agnostic and includes all of the great features of its sister product, the Kwilt Shoebox Mini, plus even faster processing speeds thanks to its Quad-Core CPU, 5 GHz Wireless-AC network and the ability to connect directly to your router through fast Ethernet. Photos are uploaded in seconds, and its additional USB ports allow up to 4 storage devices to be connected simultaneously. With the Plus, consumers can:

 

  • Offload mobile photos and videos seamlessly at faster speeds

  • Enjoy unlimited mobile storage by connecting up to 4 USB storage devices to the Kwilt Shoebox

  • Maintain original, full-resolution photos and videos

  • Access photos and videos from anywhere, on any mobile platform

  • No longer pay monthly storage subscription fees

  • Maintain complete privacy with a personal cloud accessible only by the consumer

More specs & purchase information can be found at https://www.kwiltshoebox.com/. The Kwilt app is available for free on the Android and iTunes app stores.

Kwilt Shoebox Plus App
Kwilt Shoebox Plus App
Kwilt Shoebox Plus App
 

PRODUCT | Hitcase - CRIO - for iPhone X by Jenn Chan

 Hitcase CRIO with Wide & Ultra Wide Lens

Hitcase CRIO with Wide & Ultra Wide Lens


When you trust your phone to Hitcase it can go from the sweat factory to the glacier to the lake and back again without worry. Poolside Cancun, I've brought it there. Tut tut riding in Vietnam, I've brought it there. Parasailing in Thailand and, ya, I brought it there.


Now I've been loving my iPhone 6 Plus for the last 3 years, but finally it was time to upgrade. I'd been drooling over the iPhone X ever since its announcement back in September and I was able to get my hands on one in November and, of course, I was excited to also upgrade my Hitcase to protect my new baby and I was delighted when I came home a few days ago to a package of Hitcase goodies had arrived in my mailbox!  I couldn't wait to open the package and out came a Hitcase CRIO, 2 Magnetic TrueLUX Lens (wide & ultra wide) and a car mount. I was set!


The main thing to me is, of course, protecting my $1800 iPhone for which I had to pay cash for to keep my sweet cell phone plan, but we'll save that for another post. After a few days' use, I feel the CRIO will do just that. I'm usually pretty careful with my tech toys, but there will be times when I get clumsy and it slips from my hand. The Crio is lightweight, but yet thick enough for a 'harder-than-you-thought' drop onto the table.

 

The Crio also has a built in magnetic plate in the back of its case for all your mounting needs! My package came with this car mount which is super easy to 'mount' onto your car. You simply have to clip the claw onto your vent, lift your phone up to the magnetic circle on the mount, and TA-DA, your phone is now securely mounted onto your car.

 

Hitcase Car Mount

One of the biggest difference I noticed with Hitcase's newest offerings is the new lens system. They're now magnetic, snap-on lens instead of their tradition screw on lens.  This makes obtaining that wide & ultra wide angle that much easier! Just take off the protective plastic caps & let the magnet do its job - VIOLA, now you can capture the whole room without moving 10 steps back!

 

Hitcase CRIO with Wide & Ultra Wide Lens

 

Here's some of the tech specs from their website:

THE NEXT GENERATION OF TRUELUX OPTICS

Completely redesigned for even better optical clarity. Available for HITCASE PRO, SHIELD LINK & CRIO

  • Refined optical design produces the sharpest image in its class

  • No vignetting, edge to edge clarity

  • Very low chromatic aberration

  • Completely waterproof, dust-proof, snow-proof with or without a Hitcase

  • Two start thread and magnetic LINK™ mounting for ease of use between all Hitcase products

  • Anodized aluminum construction

  • Anti-reflective and anti-scratch coatings on all lens elements.
     

 THE NEXT GENERATION OF TRUELUX OPTICS

THE NEXT GENERATION OF TRUELUX OPTICS

 Hitcase Wide & Ultra Wide Lens

Hitcase Wide & Ultra Wide Lens

 Regular iPhone X lens

Regular iPhone X lens

 Hitcase Wide Lens

Hitcase Wide Lens

 Hitcase Ultra Wide Lens

Hitcase Ultra Wide Lens

 

I can highly recommend Hitcase and have counted on them, almost from their inception, to keep my iPhones safe, especially on vacations, as well as allowing me to capture some spectacular angles without having to lug my 90 lb DSLR around everywhere!  I can't wait for the Pro & Shield to come into rotation for the iPhone X and I'm sure I'll write another review!

 

 

Lost Inhibitions by Church & State Wines by Jenn Chan

Lost Inhibition Wine

 

The Church and State winery is in the Oliver-Osoyoos wine region of the gorgeous Okanagan Valley. In 2015 their 2012 Coyote Bowl Malbec won best Malbec getting 96 out of 100 points beating out 5,000+ other entries! Their 2011 vintage also received many accolades and awards.

 

Lost Inhibition Wine

 

Lost Inhibitions screams young, hip, fresh and fun. Phrases like "you're so f@cking classy" "we should do this more often" "shut the front door" in bold colourful writing accompanies their value priced white and red wines. The white is resfreshingly crisp and paired very nicely with a lovely chicken and waffle platter. The red wine is full bodied and smooth and is perfect for a chilly winter night!

 

Lost Inhibition Wine
Lost Inhibition Wine
Lost Inhibition Wine
Lost Inhibition Wine
 
Words: Scott Allan
Photos: Jenn Chan
 

Test Driving the 2017 Ford Fusion by Jenn Chan

Ford Fusion 2017

 

The 2017 Ford Fusion's steering wheel has more buttons on it than my first car had in its entire interior! The navigation display was almost as big as my childhood tv! The seats felt like a reassuring hug from my dear mother, supple and soft, and the suspension was tight yet forgiving. If you're gathering that I enjoyed the vehicle you're not far off... I loved it!

 

The first day of our week long test drive was a typical day in our household. With work finished for the day a plethora of chores loomed. Or Netflix. We opted, reluctantly and after some tense discussion, for the former and set off to make the 50 km journey from our perch in Downtown Vancouver to a property we're flipping in South Langley. Jenn took the first leg of the trip and seemed to enjoy the smooth ride, but bemoaned the height of her road view after years spent exclusively in SUVs. Compared to our usual chariot, a 2012 Ford Escape Hybrid, we felt crouched in go-kart position, but the sensation quickly wore off as we acclimated and after no time at all the silence in the cabin, the comfort of the interior and the responsiveness of both the acceleration and deceleration trumped all. 

 

Then it was my turn. My first impression was more positive than an optimist 3 beers in on his birthday. As I set about fixing the mirrors and setting my seat into the optimum position, think Cheech in a '64 Impala, low and leaned, I realized that I could set it to auto-Cheech the next time I got a chance to drive her. A slow smile crept over my face that didn't disappear after I reached up and clicked the push button start. It didn't disappear after I twisted the Jetson-like dial gear shift into drive. Poof and, with no rubber laid, we were off at a break neck speed. I reached the 60 KM limit in what seemed like 4 seconds and let off the rocket pedal to scope out the cruise control and survey all the other futuristic LED lights, dials and doo hickies. This car was from the future. Here I was in September of 2016 driving a car from 2017. Let that sink in. Magic and unicorns on that trip home folks. Talking beavers and slip and slides in the clouds.


 

Ford Fusion 2017

 

The next day we had a photo project for a successful Tri-Cities Realtor. The Tri-Cities comprise Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam and Port Moody. Each more beautiful than the last. Seriously. Lakes and rivers and mountains and winding mountain roads. We had a list of 24 items and locations to photograph, what better excuse for a test drive? What better way to gain an appreciation for both the shiny silver Fusion AND the lush region? With a dozen locations set into the GPS we set off on our adventure. The vehicle performed admirably in the mountains, on the freeway there and along the winding roads! We were 3 hours into our day when I found it...

 

Sport mode. A mode for guys who like sports? Maybe. I do like sports, but I prefer to think of it as a button that tells your car's computer to make itself more awesome. It obliges. After delighting in its torque and pick up for the better part of an hour I noticed something else. While stopped at a light the paddles on the steering wheel I had been fooling with trying to change the radio station made an "A" grey out and a "1" replace it: sport mode with a paddle shift 5-speed manual transmission! Jenn was nervous for the next hour as I tested how quickly I could scorch my fellow road mates on the line. I didn't lose a "race". In part because I was the only one who knew it was a race and in part because this car has gumption!

 

Over the week it served as a grocery-getter and could have housed our $250 Costco run AND no less that 2 dead bodies; it's a big trunk. It hosted a designated driver DJ'ed pub crawl where passengers marvelled at the leg room in the back. I think someone for the backseat asked me for some Grey Poupon at one point. At least I think that's what he said. 

 

 

Ford Fusion 2017 Interior
Ford Fusion 2017 Steering Wheel
Ford Fusion 2017 Interior
Ford Fusion 2017 Deck
Ford Fusion 2017 Nav System

 

By the end of the week our minds had changed on sedans. Perhaps that trunk would suffice for our snowboard gear, beach chairs and the like? Yes, we thought, we I'll definitely keep it if they offer it. They didn't, however, so I'm left to write about a lost love and plot a course that puts us together again soon. If only in my dreams.


 

Ford Fusion 2017
 
Words: Scott Allan
Photos: Jenn Chan
 

Product Review: Hitcase Shield & Hitcase Snap by Jenn Chan

Hitcase

 

How much does your phone cost? I doubt many people would bat an eye to the fact that the phone I'm typing these words on is worth $1,300... $1,300!? Enter Hitcase, who now boast the world's thinnest waterproof case; the Hitcase Shield! I was fortunate enough to get my hands on both the Shield and the famous Hitcase Snap for my iPhone 6S Plus. We'll start our review with the Shield that hasn't left my phone since I got it.

 

Hitcase Shield
Hitcase Shield

 

 

The feeling of a 'naked' iPhone is such a sweet thing. Think about it. You pull it out of its case and peel of the dingy old screen protector and give it all a thorough wipe. The feeling of that little chunk of aircraft glass and plastic so slim and smooth in your palm; all at once exhilarating and terrifying. If you're like me you re-armour your trusty companion and go on about your day, but with the Shield you still get that slim, 'naked' feeling! It's shockproof, not resistant, waterproof, not sprinkle proof!  Drop it, kick it, take it in a tsunami and Hitcase has you covered!

 

The Snap is the heavy duty big brother to the Shield. Bulky for that extra shock protection during whichever extreme sport you're recording. It comes with the trademark Hitcase fisheye lens for that GoPro-Essie footage and is mountable on any Hitcase selfie stick or other accessory. I have literally never taken it off, save for demoing the Pro, since I got it and won't be doing so anytime soon. Serving as the perfect compliment to my beloved iPhone when I'm on the ski hill. Serving to make Apple's products (Samsung and the rest of the copycat gang as well) better by eliminating the need for a GoPro! Apple spent all this time, money and resources to make their devices shoot video in the splendour that is 4K and Hitcase came along and served a very big need in the market.

 

Hitcase Snap
Hitcase Snap

 

Don't bother with GoPro, just don't, I've personally lost 2 at the bottom on the Pacific and Indian Oceans respectively and the anxiety and fear that the fragility of GoPro accessories leaves you with detracts, massively, from the enjoyment of the day! Go get a Hitcase and spend the money you save on something nice for someone you love! Go now!

 

 
Words: Scott Allan
Photos: Jenn Chan