This Month In Technology

Stuck at work? Why don’t you treat yourself with some of the latest gizmos., Here are five areas that are currently trending:

  1. Vocal assistants

Voice assistant technology has exploded this year, and probably won’t stop for a long time. A voice assistant usually takes the form of a small connected speaker, which incorporates microphones. With a keyword like “Ok Google”, “Alexa”, “Hey Siri”, you can wake your device up and ask whatever you want. For now, it’s mostly about the weather, the stock market price, the traffic on the road, the translation of a sentence, launching your favourite TV show, or listening to your personalized audio playlist. But the possibilities are increasing fast, as fast the Artificial Intelligence can learn.

You can also control your home with voice through connected objects in your home, or play interactive games with the children. In short, it is possible to do a lot of things thanks to voice assistants, who are becoming essential for monitoring your house. Google was the first to arrive with Google Assistant and its Google Home devices. Amazon followed rapidly with Alexa and Amazon Echo, then Apple with its Homepod. Google and Amazon have also given the opportunity to third-party manufacturers to integrate their voice assistant, so it is possible today to have an assistant embedded in speakers from Sonos, Sony, etc. There are vocal assistants for all prices, for different requirements.

  1. Robot vacuum cleaners

Robot vacuum cleaners have now reached a very advanced level of technology and they are doing their job perfectly. You can make them scan the room to develop the best route and optimize cleaning, resume loading automatically, and return to work where they left off if necessary. Some of them even provide the option of creating areas that can be cleaned on demand. They are so smart that they avoid obstacles and prevent furniture from any damage. 

In short, we can now trust these devices to help us in the tedious task of maintaining a house. And more so because their prices have dropped considerably in recent years, making this small investment is a major time-saver. You can usually control your vacuum cleaner from a mobile phone, sometimes with very simple programming. For example, you can make it work when the alarm is activated, indicating that no one is left at home. They do the job quietly and when you get back home, it’s clean. So don’t you want to make your life easier?

  1. Wi-Fi repeaters and amplifiers

Repeaters and Wi-Fi amplifiers are becoming more and more popular. And for a simple reason. While we had 3-4 devices connected to the Wi-Fi a few years ago, today we can very easily have forty of them. For instance, a Freeview box can include smartphones, tablets, laptops, game consoles, and various connected objects. What’s more frustrating than “lagging” during a game online, or buffering on the Freeview HD? Unless you’re still on satellite television, you are going to need one of these babies. 

We consume more and more online services (games, streaming video service, music streaming services, etc.), so we must not only have a good bandwidth from internet service providers, but also a good Wi-Fi network. Things like the Orbi RBK50 can revolutionize your Wi-Fi network. Netgear who makes those little things has indeed established as a leader in the field with its range Orbi, capable of covering huge areas, whether you have a house of 80square metres or 800 square metres. These amplifiers provide the best internet options for rural areas. Other manufacturers also propose decent managed IT services solutions such as Synology with its Mesh router, Google with its Wifi, Asus, Linksys, etc.

  1. Wireless headphones, or True Wireless

The trend among phone manufacturers is to give up on the famous jack, to the extent that it becomes difficult to find a smartphone that still has a jack. Our good old wired headsets are gradually abandoned. With no choice, we must turn to Bluetooth headsets. In this area, we find a plethora of competitors. We have “classic” headsets, working wirelessly, withBluetooth. But the trend is increasingly for “truly wireless” headphones, those in-ear headphones that slip into your ear and have zero wires to connect. It gives you total freedom of movement! You can even go jogging with them!

But of course, with their small size, the autonomy of the devices is not that great. The parade is to offer a box to store them, so as not to lose them, which also takes care of charging them. Even if the headphones themselves usually offer 3 to 4 hours of listening, a little trip in their storage box can increase the enjoyment of listening until twenty hours. See for instance the Antipods of Divacore, with their new “Nomad” and “Nomad +” versions providing the best replacement to your old earphones.

  1. Micro mobility

Finally, let’s talk about micro-mobility. This area has developed progressively following the democratization of small electric vehicles like hoverboards, scooters, monowheels,skateboards, and now electric rollers. 

Just go to a city and you’ll see dozens of people walk around with these funny devices. Easy to carry, non-polluting, non-noisy, they can absolutely go everywhere! Some are more difficult than others to ride like the monowheel, but others are very simple, like the electric scooter, which drives quite naturally. 

Some big cities like Auckland now propose them on rent. If you prefer to have your own device, the rates have dropped significantly. Check for instance the M365 Xiaomi which is affordable and cheap, perfect to go to work!

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