Published in City Press. What were the gadgets that got us going and those that should not have made it to the shelves this year? By Nafisa Akabor
3. Nintendo Switch Lite
Nintendo makes excellent gaming products for the whole family, but when it comes to the Switch Lite you’re allowed to be selfish and keep it to yourself. This hand-held gaming console is suited for single play with built-in controllers, but cannot be docked on to a TV. At 5.5-inches, it’s portable yet sturdy and fits easily into a bag, especially when travelling. It’s guaranteed to provide hours of entertainment no matter where you are. With titles such as Diablo III, Skyrim and The Witcher 3, it is bound to appeal to the most hardcore gamer.
Price: R3 999
2. Bose Frames Rondo
This is one of the coolest gadgets we’ve played with this year. It’s a pair of audio sunglasses that offer ultraviolet protection while delivering open-air sound. It’s the perfect holiday gadget that you can use at the pool or beach to take phone calls or listen to audio books and playlists. These functions are controlled by a main button, with access to Siri and Google Assistant. The speakers are positioned on the handle of the frames, thus delivering audio directly to you and not surrounds. It helps that Bose is a luxury brand known for its excellent audio quality.
Price: R4 499
1. DJI Mavic Mini
DJI is the market leader when it comes to drones, but it’s mostly been intimidating up until now. The new Mavic Mini is bound to appeal to those who don’t have time to learn how to fly a drone and that’s why it’s our number one pick. At 249g, it is ultraportable and has a fair amount of automated modes to take the perfect shot without requiring the skills to fly it. It has ample flight time at 30 minutes and captures 2.7K resolution videos with 12MP still shots. However, it does not have obstacle avoidance and should be flown away from trees and buildings.
Price: R6 999
Fail of the year: Wireless chargers
It doesn’t matter what brand of wireless charger you buy because it will always be slower than a wired charger. A lot of flagship handsets today support wireless charging; some of them even have reverse wireless charging, which allows your phone to act as the charging station, but this feature is only cool to show your friends. Beyond that it is not practical and we do not recommend purchasing one. Smartphones today are already a step ahead, with fast charging plugs that charge to 80% within half an hour. There’s really no competition here; save your randelas.
Welcome to Wired to the Web. My name is Nafisa Akabor and I’m a technology journalist covering business and consumer tech for the last 13 years. I’m passionate about start-ups, smartphones, mobile payments, travel tech and electric cars. I’m usually unashamedly taking food photos (@nafisaeats on IG).