January's Must-Have Gadgets and Apps

Olly Mann

The rise of the use of gadgets in everyday life is undeniable. So lets stop denying it shall we? These gadgets and apps are the next generation of technology for... the next generation!

Pure Pop Midi with Bluetooth, £79.99

British company Pure’s first DAB back in 2002 was, for many, our first taste of digital radio. But now we demand something smarter and sexier, so enter their new Pop range—boasting one big, central button that pops up at the top of the device to turn on the radio and adjust the volume. Although relatively compact, the Midi fills the room with sound, and, if required, pairs with your smartphone to stream internet radio.

Available from Pure
 

Google Glass (Explorer Edition), £1,000

Will the much-hyped Apple Watch make wearable tech a mainstream commodity? I’m sceptical, but if you’re already keen on web-connected fashion these smart spectacles are, erm, a spectacle. Look up to see a chart of the night sky in your geolocation, or tap the right arm of the glasses for headlines from CNN. Despite the hefty price tag, they’re essentially prototypes, yet to evolve into a truly game-changing gadget; and privacy concerns around video-recording glasses have informed an ugly design with a bulky camera. But it’s hard not to be wowed by the technology.

Available at Google Play
 

The Selfy Stick, £14.95

The unstoppable rise of the selfie has lead to the rebirth of the humble monopod. These extendable stands—available in Selfridges and Footasylum—enable enthusiastic Facebookers to post a wider variety of self-portraits: close-up, bird’seye- view. The gentle clamp holds any smartphone in place, the clasp can be adjusted, and there’s even a Bluetoothenabled shutter button, so you can activate the camera from a distance. Or just stop taking so many selfies.

Available at The Selfy Stick

 

APPS OF THE MONTH

Android App Of the month

Digiduck’s Big Decision, Free

It’s increasingly important for kids to gain a good grasp of cyberspace, both in terms of building up skills and also to avoid the dangers of cyberbullying and internet predators. This eBook, narrated by former Blue Peter presenter Janet Ellis and her daughter Sophie Ellis-Bextor, flags up such concerns in an engaging tale for 3–7 year-olds to read on their tablets along with mum or dad.

Available from Google Play
 

Apple app of the month

London Plaques: Explore London, £1.99

London Plaques app

There are around 2,000 plaques commemorating great people and events in England’s capital city, and this app catalogues them all. With or without access to the internet, the app can locate you on a map so you can visit as many of them as possible, and provides informative potted biographies of each illustrious individual.

Available at iTunes

Olly is a technology expert, LBC presenter and Answer Me This! podcaster.

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