Feature video: We look at three tech toys ahead of Christmas: Evernote’s smart notebook, Sphero, and Parrot Zik headphones.
Christmas is fast approaching and if you’re anything like me, you’ve left all your shopping until the last minute. Well don’t fret, it’s the All Hands on Tech Christmas edition! We’ll be looking at three tech toys to get the geek in your life.
First, a stocking stuffer for the organization freak on your list. The Evernote Smart Notebook by Moleskine. This is an old-fashioned pen and paper notebook that works with the Evernote app on iOS.
First, write your note as you normally would in the notebook. Then use the special “Page Camera” feature in Evernote to take a picture of it. Evernote uses the dotted lines on the page to straighten the image to fit nicely on your page. It also uses high contrast to make the text easier to read.
Best of all, Evernote will recognize your hand-written notes and index them for search. I found it was much better at recognizing my printing than my handwriting. The notebook also comes with stickers. The app will recognize these and automatically tag your notes according to the sticker type.
The Evernote Smart Notebook retails at $32 in Canada. It also comes with three months of an Evernote Premium subscription.
Next, a present for a gaming enthusiast. Sphero is a remote control ball that you control with your mobile device.
Using Bluetooth, you connect with Sphero using an iOS or Android device. Then you use an app to control Sphero using either a touch screen joy stick or by tilting your device. The ball has a 50 foot range and can travel as fast as three feet per second.
Your pet will love chasing Sphero around the room, and your co-workers will also find it hard to resist playing with as it whizzes by their cubicles.
Sphero costs $130 in Canada. You may have trouble finding this hot item in stock.
Finally, for the audiophile that has it all, a pair of Parrot Zik. These uber-high quality headphones also sport a stylish design.
Using an app on your smartphone, you can control Zik’s smart features. Turn on noise cancellation to effectively drown out background noises. Make your songs sound like they’re being played in a concert hall, or a jazz lounge. Or use the equalizer to fine-tune the sound for heavy bass or crystal clear vocals.
These headphones even use a special touch panel to adjust the volume or skip to the next track. Just swipe up to make it louder, down to make it quieter, forward to go to the next track, and back to go to the previous track. Pause the song by tapping the headphones, or simply taking them off.
Parrot Zik headphones cost $430 in Canada.
You can buy all of these geeky gifts at Amazon.ca or the Apple store.