Written by Joshua Potts
Six months in, this year is already a doozy for the tech world, throwing more treasures at our feet than a pirate with Alzheimer’s. That’s just how we like it. If it were up to us, there’d be limitless credit for every gadget geek: his or her own bank account, topped well into the millions for the awesome stuff we can buy.
But there isn’t. So we have to be savvy with our picks – hence, the list below, which lumps all of the finest technology we’ve seen up till this second in 2018:
30 hours of battery life. My God. Are we in heaven? No – there’s too much Pantera playing at a volume unreasonable to mankind, tucked at the sides of your hoodie when manning the train or regular bus trip. Sony’s flagship headphones are your best friend for life, in terms of audio quality. They’re also supreme for noise cancellation, too, almost (but not quite) beating Bose at their own game.
Move over, Echo; there’s a challenger in town who’s probably gaining more kudos than you, and has an ear for chained voice commands. Google Home is fabulous: the mini version is only £40-50, recognising such things as “Hey, tell me the time and check if I have any meetings and, oh, turn up the heat whilst you’re at it . . .” The race for the crown of the market is on. Amazon have the head start yet are losing out to the feature-rich Home concept, which doesn’t listen to absolutely everything you say; a factor that people will love after all of those ‘Echo ordered me some cookies and a dollhouse’ reports from the joyous corners of the internet.
Flying to the peak of the commercial drone sector is the latest, foldable concept from DJI, the Apple of the skies. Yes, you read that correctly: it folds up so you can carry the device in your pocket, which – along with the three-axis gimbal, 4K camera and enough juice for a 21-minute flight path – makes it the only drone worth raving about in 2018. Parrot have designed a rival, but it doesn’t do too well on obstacle avoidance. Ha! DJI will send you a combo pack, just to underscore their win, for £1,298.
Usually there’s a gulf between digital and a drawing or a scribble. Let the Moleskin Smart Writing Paper blow your brain to bits, then, before someone sketches the result and links it instantly to their cloud account. It works with n-coded paper technology (whatever that is . . .), sending the electronic touch of your pen to a tablet, phone or laptop. The image is yours to manipulate or share at will. Amateur artists are in love with it, almost as much as the trim, black-shoes business types wondering how they can save on the day’s note typing.
We’re almost straying back to smart homes for our last choice, except it’s the gadget to fill the gap until we get 100% super property systems, the kind that tell us we’re beautiful while giving us a massage etc. This universal remote from Harmony Elite doesn’t quite go that far, yet it is compatible with 270,000 lifestyle and entertainment devices – shuttered blinds, smart fireplaces, TV stations; practically the gamut of what we like to chill amongst in the wee hours of the evening. Also: you can lock your front door in bed. What an age to be alive.