Are you, or someone in your life crazy about gadgets? Well, you’ll be glad to hear that 2016 is looking very bright. Gadget-wise that is. And with the pace of technology growing ever faster, every year is sure to bring technological marvels.
But, one year at a time. We’re not quite ready for flying cars yet!
So, perhaps you’re looking to buy for yourself, or for the gadget enthusiast in your life. Well, let’s go through a few exciting technologies coming out over the next 12 months:
The Oculus Rift (of Course)
Let’s start with one of the most anticipated gadgets of 2016 – the Oculus Rift. You’ve surely heard of it, right? Well, the Rift is destined to bring virtual reality to the mainstream, finally.
Virtual reality, like 3D films, has tried and failed several times to break into mainstream acceptance. Hollywood has tried to get people excited about 3D movies several times. But after the initial interest to see how good (or not) the technology has become, people invariably lose interest. It takes a special film, with special technology, like Avatar, to really piqué people’s interest.
And it will likely be similar with virtual reality. The technology is getting more and more powerful, yet at the same time financially more accessible to most people. Power increases, price drops. But poor quality virtual reality will put people off, just like poor quality 3D films put people off.
So there are hundreds, if not thousands of developers, developing for the device. With that, there will invariability be some poor quality virtual reality software. But they’ll also be some amazing experiences, and some ground-breaking ones. The virtual reality equivalent of Avatar, if you will.
So it’s exciting that this device is launching in the first quarter of the new year. Not long to wait at all! Gamers and early adopters will jump on it first, and report back in droves as they tend to do. So look out for the YouTube reviews any moment…
And how those early adopters react to it will then start to drive mainstream adoption. Although the biggest factor will be price. And to get virtual reality into every living room, and onto every child’s head (for better or worse), it will have to be affordable. Pester power is a powerful force, but it still needs to be in a parent’s budget.
And if it then catches on, and becomes ever more popular, so yes, the price will fall. And it will make it past the early adopters, into mainstream consciousness. And finally, when your grandparents ask you what the Oculus Rift, you know that everyone’s really heard of it!
And Facebook of course owns it, and they reach well over a billion people every month. So with that marketing platform, and their financial resources, it’s almost guaranteed to be a success.
So what exactly is it? Well, if you don’t know by now…
It’s virtual reality of course. You put on the (hopefully comfortable) headset, and you get immersed into the world you’re seeing and hearing. It fills your senses. Except touch, smell and taste that is. But maybe those senses will be taken care of in version 2.
Pebble Time Steel
Wearable tech is catching on, somewhat. The Apple Watch hasn’t taken off to anywhere near the extent that Apple hoped. But that said, there’s still a viable market for such gadgets. And it will likely grow over time as people get used to having a device on their wrist.
Now, one of the leaders in smart watches is Pebble. That started as a Kickstarter project, and was in fact one of the most successful ones ever. And unlike a lot of Kickstarter projects, it actually shipped. And it actually fulfilled the promise to those who purchased.
So with its popularity, Pebble Time is now a fully fledged business. Although one focused on the relatively narrow field of smart watches. So its latest incarnation is Pebble Time Steel.
One benefit this evolution of the device promises is ten days of life from a single battery charge. Far fetched? We’ll see once this device actually ships.
And excitedly, this gadget can communicate with apps from both the App store and Play store. So whether you’re Apple or Android, your phone can work with this device. And it fits the look of your apple iPhone 6s cases so no worries there.
Perhaps you heard, there’s a new Star Wars film? It’s been mentioned in the media once or twice. Much as I have tried to avoid the Star Wars craze, you just have to mention the adorable little droid, BB-8.
And with a new Stars Wars film comes a whole heap of related toys and gadgets. And here come the latest…
This little droid can connect to your devices through Bluetooth. And it even features holographic communication.
You might be tempted to just play with it as soon as you get it, but remember resale value! Keep it pristine in its box, and then holding onto it for a decade or two might make it a viable pension plan.
Remember those hover boards in Back to the Future? Well, it’s only taken twenty years, but they’ve finally made it from the movies into reality.
It’s not quite the hover board we all hoped for, but it’s a close second. It uses air pressure of course to keep you off the ground, and zipping along. There’s plenty of videos on YouTube you can see of people wiping out on these. And perhaps you’ll join them!
It’s new technology, so it may have a few kinks, and if you wait a little while you’ll get a better version, cheaper. Of course. You know how these things go.
But if you can’t wait, then put it on your shopping list, and get gliding!
Withings Smart Body Analyzer
There’s apps now to track our health every moment of the day. With Fitbit and the rest of them, people are tracking, and ‘hacking’, their bodies, almost to the point of obsession.
Well, here’s a new one for you…
The Withings Smart Body Analyzer is designed to keep you on track with your fitness, weight loss, and health goals. And it does that by measuring all sorts of things about you, constantly:
- Your weight
- Your body fat
- Your heart rate
- Even the air quality
- … and more besides.
And of course, it updates automatically to your smart phone, so at any time you can see exactly how you’re doing.
What are some up and coming gadgets that you have your eye on? Let us know in the comments!