10 best in-car gadgets that make life simpler
Take the pleasure of driving a car to new levels with these specially made gizmos.
Garmin Dash Cam 20
This is a high-definition driving recorder that captures both audio and video, with GPS for detailed time and location data pinpointing exactly where and when events occurred. Mount the camera to your windshield and record your drive in 1080p video in a continuous loop, using the included 4 GB microSD card. The camera features automatic Incident Detection (G-Sensor) with customisable sensitivity settings. When an incident – like hard braking or a collision – is detected, your camera will save the current, last and next recordings, thereby preserving a complete record of the event.
Price: Rs 21,208
If wearing a headset is not your thing, try handsfree communication in your car with the Jabra Freeway. Block outgoing noise, experience clear calls and enjoy music with a 3-speaker virtual surround sound system; if you prefer your car’s sound system, use the FM transmitter to send music and calls directly to your car radio. The Freeway turns on and connects automatically, gives you voice guidance and tells you who’s calling, so that you can stay fully focussed on the road.
Price: Rs 5,896
GoPro HD Hero 4
This is not another dashcam. Everyone’s favourite tiny action camera, the GoPro HD Hero 4 is the camera for your next road trip. From twisty canyons and open dunes to inner city lanes and coastal roads – shoot dramatic on-the-go footage or capture a time-lapse movie that enables your audience to travel hundreds of miles in a few minutes. There are many mounting and housing options available for the camera, for both inside and outside a car.
Price: Rs 41,989
Garmin Nüvi 2567LM
Garmin has a bewildering array of products in its range (not all are available in India), but our most recommended SatNav for Indian roads is the Nuvi 2567LM. It includes detailed street maps and premium features like Smartphone Link, an app for Android and iOS that lets you make and receive calls directly from the GPS device and send addresses from your smartphone to the Nuvi.
Price: Rs 17,990
Pioneer MVH-X370BT In-Dash Digital Media Receiver
If you are driving a premium car, chances are that it came with its own, proprietary audio system. For lesser mortals, the Pioneer MVH-X370BT comes with Bluetooth connectivity, which allows users to make hands-free phone calls and stream music from a Bluetooth device. iPhone 4s or later users can take advantage of Siri Eyes Free functionality, which provides access to many iPhone functions such as music selection, making phone calls and listening to text messages, calendar information and reminders.
Price: Rs 10,894
Incipio Quick Charge 2.0
When you are going to be in your car for just a short while and have limited time to juice up your devices, a car charger rated Quick Charge can charge about 75 per cent faster than conventional chargers. The Incipio Quick Charge 2.0 is one of the best chargers in the market and delivers the same extremely fast charging speeds while driving that owners get at home.
Darth Vader Car Charger
Don’t underestimate the power of the dark side. Plug this Darth Vader USB car charger into your 12V vehicle power socket and you’ll get 2.1 amps flowing into your phone, tablet or anything that charges via USB. Note: Using the power of the Dark Side will not necessarily make your device evil, but you will probably want to keep a wary eye on it.
If you are on the road a lot, the PowerMonkey Explorer is an invaluable piece of kit, charging your gadgets on the go. It comes with a range of connectors and adapters, allowing you to charge everything from your mobile phone and iPod to your camera and PSP. What makes the Explorer special is the small solar panel it comes with, which you can dangle out of your rucksack or put on the back of your car.
Price: Rs 9,559
Belkin Car Vent Mount
While there are innumerable car vent mounts for smartphones in the market, the build quality of Belkin is the reason it’s on our list. It has adjustable brackets to ensure a secure fit for your iPhone or Android device, rotates 360 degrees so you can view your device in either portrait or landscape mode and comes with a cable holder on the back of the mount, which lets you keep your phone’s connector cable tangle free and out of the way when you charge your phone from the power outlet in your car.
Price: Rs 1,700
Garmin Head-Up Display
Top Gun fans are going to love the Garmin HUD+, a read-out screen and windshield projector that beams navigation information onto your windshield for easy viewing, reducing driver distraction. It receives data wirelessly from your compatible smartphone, running the free Garmin HUD India App. It shows a multitude of information including turn indicators, distance to your next turn, current speed and speed limit, lane guidance and estimated time of arrival. If you are still calculating its utility, you clearly don’t have any fighter-jet fantasies.
Price: Rs 15,000