Our tech guru rounds up the coolest tools for 2021 and beyond.
1. LIFESMART MAGIC MIRROR
The Magic Mirror merges fashion with technology. It can be mounted at a central location like the entrance to the home, the bedroom or the bathroom. It has smart features that let you control supported home appliances, similar to a smart speaker. It features an auto-wake-up function, health management, voice control, entertainment functions, and has a built-in camera. The Magic Mirror is Android-powered and runs on a MediaTek chip with 2GB of RAM and 16GB of memory. You simply scan a QR code to set up and select personal preferences.
R29,995 ($1,915) from Mikrotech.co.za
2. SAMSUNG GALAXY Z FOLD 2
The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2 is the gadget to own for early adopters. Samsung’s newest folding screen device is an incredible piece of tech, boasting an ultra-thin glass top over last year’s plastic one. The Infinity-O display, 120Hz refresh rate and multi-tasking capabilities make it a pleasure to use. Add to it a triple lens camera, 5G support, a massive fast-charging battery and what more could you want? If this is the future of mobile, we’re excited.
R46,995 ($3,000) from Samsung stores.
3. IPAD AIR (64GB CELLULAR)
The new iPad Air takes Work From Anywhere to another level. Weighing just under 500g, it runs on Apple’s fastest A14 Bionic chip and is more powerful than most PCs. Plus, the pencil and keyboard accessories give you flexibility on what you can do or how creative you get to be. It has a 10.9-inch display, narrow bezels and 12MP camera; ideally suited for today’s environment as a result of the global pandemic. Work or play, it has an excellent battery life. This sleek tablet now comes in pastel hues like blue, green and pink, in addition to silver and grey.
R14,999 ($958) at the iStore.
4. RING VIDEO DOORBELL 3
Amazon’s popular Ring Video Doorbell 3 is now available in South Africa for the first time. For added peace of mind, it has motion detection and live view, above its two-way talk system. It features
a 1080p full HD camera, enhanced dual-band 2.4-5Ghz WiFi connectivity and Alexa support. It works with the user-friendly Ring app, accessible from a mobile device. The adjustable Near Zone feature detects motion within 1.5m to 4.5m from the front door. Privacy features support areas that can be excluded from the camera’s field of view and the ability to turn off video or audio recording.
R3,999 ($255) from Takealot.com
5. SMEG D&G ESPRESSO MACHINE
The Smeg Dolce & Gabanna manual espresso machine is for serious coffee-lovers who also appreciate a touch of luxury. This retro statement piece with its Sicilian-inspired geometric pattern deserves a special spot in the kitchen. It has a removable 1L tank, adjustable coffee temperature and supports three cup sizes (Ristretto, Espresso and Lungi) with a milk froth function. Other features include an anti-drip system, descaling indicator and adjustable stand-by times between nine minutes to three hours. The 1350W espresso machine is made in Italy.
R24,699 ($1,576) from Yuppiechef.com
6. JEKYLL & HIDE MONTANA BACKPACK
The Montana overnight business backpack from Jekyll & Hide
is stylish and durable, made from full-grain leather available in a beautiful colt shade. The layout is organized with compartments for a laptop, tablet, travel documents, business cards, cables, pens, etc. Its dimensions are 31 x 15 x 45cm and have secure fastening straps; a front zipped pocket, and a secure RFID slot to protect bank cards and passports from identity theft. The main zipped pocket has dedicated 15” laptop and tablet slots. As an overnighter, the middle compartment accommodates a change of clothes or shoes.
R6,999 ($447) at JekyllandHide.co.za
7. UNDER ARMOUR HOVR MACHINA
If lockdown had you turn to fitness, check out Under Armour’s Hovr Machina running shoes. The Bluetooth-powered sneaker connects
to a smartphone app to provide stats like step count, cadence, stride length, foot strike angle, etc. It also acts as a real-time running coach with personalized guidance, and how to better manage the risk of injury while improving performance. The Hovr Machina provides a ‘zero gravity feel’ through its responsive carbon-plated propulsion soles and has the right amount of cushioning. It’s comfortable to wear when not training and suitable for marathons and long distances. Available in sizes for men and women in various shades.
R2,999 ($191) at UnderArmour.co.za
8. SONY PLAYSTATION 5
Sony’s much-anticipated next-generation gaming console has landed in time for the holiday season. The PlayStation 5’s futuristic design has gained a lot of attention since its reveal but given the uptake in gaming during lockdown globally, it’s a no-brainer. There will be two variants available, one with an optical drive and one without. The PS5 supports graphics up to 4K, a high-speed 825GB SSD, and 3D audio on its wireless controller. Exclusive titles at launch include Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales, Sackboy A Big Adventure, and Horizon Forbidden West. Digital Edition:
R9,999 ($638) and Blu-Ray: R11,999 ($766) via Raru.co.za
Dollar prices are approximates as per the exchange rate at the time of going to press.
–BY NAFISA AKABOR