The Best Travel gadgets
Pebble is a watch that connects to iPhones and Android smartphones using Bluetooth, and sends out alerts for incoming calls, emails and SMSes, Facebook messages, tweets... Cyclists can strap on a Pebble and, using their smartphone GPS, keep track of speed and distance travelled. Once it is synced to your phone, you can view all your phone data on Pebble, minimising the need to check your phone often. It has an outdoor-readable epaper display. It starts shipping in the US from this April, and is available in five colours.
SpareOne Emergency Mobile Phone
A handy, bare bones, spare phone to keep in your car’s glove compartment or carry whenever you travel. It can be used anywhere in the world (just plug in a local SIM card when travelling abroad), operates on just one AA battery, and has a lifespan of 15 years! It’s the perfect phone to rely on in an emergency: It has a built-in flashlight with a life of 24 hours, and a prominent dedicated emergency services dial button when you’re desperate for help (it connects to emergency services even without a SIM). It functions in a temperature range of -30oC to 60oC, and comes in a waterproof bag. If you use your own phone’s SIM, it sends out auto text replies if anyone sends you an SMS text, informing them that you can only receive calls on the handset.
A handheld device that uses UV radiation to purify most kinds of water in less than a minute. It’s rechargeable too. It claims to eliminate 99.9 percent of bacteria, viruses and protozoa that cause Traveller’s Diarrhoea. Its UV lamp has a life span of 3,000 water treatments.
Price $ 50
steripen.com/traveler/ or Amazon.com
A luggage locator, it will ensure you always know where your belongings are. Pack it with the rest of your stuff and once you land you’ll know immediately whether your luggage is in the same airport, or city! Its accompanying app also tells you when you’re within a 30-feet radius of your luggage. It runs on simple AA batteries and sends alerts to your phone. It can also be used to track luggage online. Scheduled to be launched in April, it has special deals on pre-orders.
Price: $63 (for orders before April 27)
Charge your devices on the move, while they sit pretty in the bag. Powerbag Business Class Pack has a built-in battery system to charge smartphones, iPods, tablets, e-readers. It sports padded laptop and tablet pockets to snugly fit in all your devices. With built-in micro- and mini-USB connectors and an on-board USB port, Powerbag can charge up to four devices together. Its external one-touch battery level indicator tells you instantly if the bag needs charging, while its suspension-contoured straps ensure comfort even when the bag is stuffed.
(With inputs from Rohin Dharmakumar and NS Ramnath)