I was initially pessimistic about the Apple AirPods when they were announced back in October 2016, even going as far as engaging in mild mockery whenever a conversation about them cropped up. The main reason for my dismissal of them was that they looked far too easy to loose. I mean, just look at them! How could they possibly stay put in your ears without falling out(?). My Apple EarPods would always fall out of my ears, but were obviously never lost as they were wired. Furthermore, launch delays were encountered, and the AirPods were finally released to the public in December 2016. I did not preorder a pair. But after watching some YouTube reviews, I was a believer. Here’s why.
With Apple firmly announcing that they are out of the stand-alone monitor business, it was only natural that users would seek-out a worthy alternative. Fortunately, consumers were not left completely abandoned, with Apple announcing somewhat of a successor to their (now discontinued) Apple cinema displays. Enter the LG UltraFine.
One of my favourite things about home automation is the ability to control my lights. I am already heavily invested in the Philips Hue ecosystem, with Hue bulbs populating my living room, bedroom and study. Controlling these using the Amazon Echo has been a huge convenience and delight. I often wondered if there was room in the market for another lighting system. I happened to stumble upon the Nanoleaf lights on Amazon and a few YouTube videos, and was immediately intrigued. At a first glance, they are very attractive, and one cannot but help to be drawn to them. So, what exactly are these lights?
The Nanoleaf Aurora lights consist of individual triangular panels. They can be mounted to your wall using the (included) 3M double-sided sticky tabs, and connect to each other through interlocking chips. The panels are made entirely from plastic and fairly light in weight, yet have a solid and premium feel.
Since Apple acquired Beats a few years ago, we all knew the day would arrive when there would be flawless integration of the brand into the Apple ecosystem. With wireless sound already showcased as the future by Apple with the removal of the headphone jack from the iPhone 7, it seems that the time has truly come to adopt wireless headphones as standard. This is my first venture into the world of Beats headphones, and in a word, wow!
The Beats Solo³ ship in a nice box and are very well presented. Included inside are the following:
-Beats Solo-3 wireless headphones
-USB-A to USB-micro charging cable
-Wired connection cable
-Carry case with clip
-Quick-start guide/warranty information/beats sticker
The Echo Dot is Amazon’s smaller and more affordable option for those looking to satisfy their home (voice) automation curiosities, without laying down a more substantial investment. Priced at a modest £49.99, it is considerably cheaper than its bigger brother, the Echo unit, which is priced at £149.99. I have already reviewed the standard Echo unit (CLICK HERE). In a nutshell, the Echo Dot carries out exactly the same functions. There are however a few differences as well, which I will also highlight.
I first heard about the Amazon Echo earlier this year. I knew it was not out in the UK (yet), so passed over it without too much curiosity. On September the 14th 2016, I saw that Amazon were now taking preorders here in the UK. I was enticed by discount being offered to Prime members (£99). This resulted in me checking out some YouTube reviews and reading more into home voice automation. Ever watched Ironman or Avengers? Then you may know who JARVIS is; Tony Stark’s automated personal assistant. This is pretty much the beginning of that technology. The Echo unit can control a whole host of things that you already use your smart phone for (and more!). I was actually very excited and am glad that I didn’t pay too much attention to these units (which have been available in the US for well over a year now), as I would have been a little disappointed not to have one here. It really didn’t take long, and I was convinced. I promptly took advantage of this offer and preordered my own Echo. Here are my thoughts.
There are a number of home surveillance cameras available on the market, and as a tech reviewer, I am often invited to review these. The only one which has worked well for me, with minimal effort, is the Philips inSight, which I have in my living room. This allows me to view live footage, but nothing more. Quality is also mediocre at best. I have recently purchased a Canary “all-in-one” home security device. In short, this is a camera from which live footage can be viewed, as well as a history of footage, along with a plethora of additional features. It is these other features which make this probably one of the best home security cameras available to consumers today. Here are my thoughts.
Apple unveiled the new Magic Trackpad 2 on October 13th 2015, and it marks a significant upgrade in both design and aesthetics from the 2010 model. It has been completely redesigned and is the kind of upgrade that makes a purchase worthwhile, particularly after waiting over 5 years since the last model.
I have been contemplating the purchase of an iPad Pro, ever since it’s unveiling at Apple’s “Special Event” in September 2015. Featuring a gorgeous 12.9” touch screen retina display, full-sized keyboard and an intuitive stylus, it wad the iPad all techies had been waiting for. To top it off a powerful A9X chip to handle ‘real’ productivity, a feature which has been lacking from iPads of the past. Yes, this all seems very familiar and Microsoft Surface has been on the scene for a few years now, but we all know that no company can provide the same intuitive and seamless experience that Apple can. So launch day has finally arrived (11th November) and I am sitting here writing this blog post on my retina MacBook, and not the iPad Pro. This has been one of the least hyped Apple launches I have seen for a new product category, and I am wondering why. Let’s take a brief analysis.
Having seen these hoverboard-like devices increase in popularity, I have always been curious about the actual purpose they serve. Are they easy to ride? How are they controlled? Are they really safe? How fast can they go? A number of questions popped into my mind, and I passed by them without too much excitement. I was fortunate enough to be sent one to review and report my own thoughts on. I was curious for sure, but never did I expect to be so very impressed!
The self balancing wheel ships in a very attractive box, and would make for an ideal gift. Included in the box is the scooter itself, a wall mains plug charger, warranty card and instructions.