Why shove it in your pocket when you can wear it? We won’t be surprised if you’ve ditched some everyday devices in favour of these feature-laden gadgets, some of which let you book cabs with a mere twist of the wrist. There’s even some that can be slipped into shoes, or worn to shade your eyes from the sun, or experience reality in its virtual form.
Apple Watch Series 2
After the first Watch, people expected the Apple Watch Series 2 to have a big enough upgrade. So does it pack all the punches that could make it a necessity, rather than a luxury? Yes and no. Yes, because there are various tech upgrades that we wanted, including a new waterresistant design, a GPS chip on board for tracking your runs, a swim tracker and a much faster processor. The expensive gold variant of the Watch is now replaced by a new white ceramic finish, while the Hermes band reappears to send the cost of the top-spec model further north (now you know about the ‘no’).
Rs 21,900 on amazon.in
Sony has been the pioneer of video gaming globally over the past decade or so, and is now planning to take on the likes of the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive in the virtual reality space. Its own headset, the PS VR, requires a gaming console, unlike the devices in competition that work on PCs or with smartphones. The headset is also much cheaper than its rivals and comes across as a robust piece of hardware. It will work only with a PS4 console, which is its drawback.
Rs 39,900 on amazon.in
GOQii Heart Tracker
The Californian company wants the heart rate tracking of their latest fitness band to be its biggest selling point, but we feel that it’s got much more to offer. It comes with an optional personal coaching subscription, which assigns you an individual trainer to keep you on your toes through the synced GOQii smartphone app every day. This is great if you’re in real need of motivation, but not so much if you don’t like getting nagged too much. That said, the band will also keep a track of your heart rate, daily steps, calories burned, distance covered, active hours and sleep patterns. What we especially loved about the band is that it needs no separate charger. The detachable core can be plugged into any power source via its USB integrated charger, and it lasts for more than a week on a full charge. Also worth mentioning is a decent sized screen that displays Whatsapp, SMS, Email and call notifications.
Rs 2,999 on amazon.in
Developed in India, these wearables function in a unique way. Two pods slot into the bottom of the insoles (which can be cut to your foot size) and connect via Bluetooth to the Lechal app on your smartphone, which has a GPS navigation feature. Once installed in your shoes, the left and right pods buzz depending on which way you have to turn, in a series of patterns that can be quickly learned, thus saving you from having to peer at your phone’s screen all the time. Importantly, the insoles allow visually challenged users to fully take in their environment aurally, without having to grapple with audio instructions on a conventional GPS system. The app also tracks the steps you’ve taken, the distance you’ve travelled and the calories you’ve burned. The pods have a claimed life of 15 days on each charge.
Rs 6,999 on amazon.in
Fitbit Charge 2
This sleek wearable has a number of useful features, at a price that isn’t stratospheric. Being from the Fitbit family, you can connect with other Fitbit-wearing friends and challenge yourselves to achieve fitness goals. The device itself tracks your heart rate, steps, distance travelled, floors climbed, sleep patterns, calories burned and number of active minutes, among others. You can also keep track of your fluid and calorie intake, set silent alarms (the unit buzzes on your wrist), see call/text/calendar notifications, practice deep breathing with a timed function and set different workout modes, apart from telling the time.
Rs 14,999 on amazon.in
Snapchat (now Snap Inc) sprung one of the biggest surprises of the year after announcing its entry into hardware. The company’s first venture in this space are the Spectacles, which are essentially sunglasses with an embedded camera. They allow users to easily capture moments in their lives and then wirelessly save them to the app’s Memories feature. Just like the smartphone application that they originate from, the modern-day lure of the spectacles remain a mystery – but against the new features of Instagram Stories, the challenges keep mounting for Snap. Nonetheless, they exude a certain charm and also have a sense of swag about them, from the design to the cute robots you buy them from. So if you want to experiment with your specs next time you buy a pair, you know what to do.
Rs 15,700 on amazon.in