Saturday, October 24

10 Tech Toys You Need to Own

ASTON MARTIN AMR-C01 RACING SIMULATOR

Co-developed with British technology company Curv, the AMR-C01 is like an Aston Martin you can park inside.

The sim is built with an all-carbon-fiber monocoque and an Aston Martin Racing grille up front and shares the same seating position as the Valkyrie sports car.

The experience, meanwhile, was developed with input from three-time Le Mans-winning Aston Martin works driver, Darren Turner. A wrap-around Samsung screen and F1-style steering wheel complete the package.

MICROSOFT XBOX SERIES S CONSOLE

The Series X has gotten most of the attention, but rumored all along was a smaller, more affordable next-gen Xbox.

It’s now been confirmed. Dubbed the Series S, it’s the most compact console yet from the company, keeping the X’s rectangular form but in a 60% smaller, white package not all that much larger than the controller.

As for specs, it’s expected to offer a 512GB SSD for storage, 4K streaming, 4K upscaling, 1440p output at up to 120 fps, ray tracing, variable-rate shading, and variable refresh rate. The Series S will drop on November 10th.

SUPREME MORTAL KOMBAT ARCADE CABINET

Arriving as part of the streetwear brand’s Fall/Winter 2020 collection, this Mortal Kombat arcade cabinet is the latest item to get the Supreme treatment.

The cabinet can play Mortal KombatMortal Kombat II, and Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 on its 17-inch LCD screen, with two sets of buttons and joysticks for two-player action.

Supreme branding can be seen on the illuminated headboard, sideboards, included riser, and Raiden’s garb.

LOVE HULTEN ARCADE COFFEE TABLE

It’s a problem many gamers face: wanting to keep their controls handy but their living space looking nice.

Love Hulten can do exactly that with the Arcade Coffee Table. Crafted from American Walnut, its joystick drawer pulls are the only clue to its true nature.

Pull them out to reveal two full sets of wireless arcade controls, with the same pulls used as joysticks on the inside.

GOOGLE NEST AUDIO SPEAKER

Positioned between the Google Nest Mini and Google Home Max, the Nest Audio Speaker is Mountain View’s latest music-focused smart speaker.

Of course, the upright, pillow-shaped unit has built-in Google Assistant for voice control but is 75% louder than its predecessor with 50% more bass thanks to a 3-inch mid-woofer and 0.75-inch tweeter.

It automatically adapts the audio to the surrounding space, can be used in a stereo pair, and as part of a whole-house system, and has a hardware mic cutoff switch for times when privacy is at a premium.

LENOVO THINKPAD X1 FOLD PC

Folding phones are officially a thing now, so it was only a matter of time before the tech trickled down (or up?) to larger devices. Lenovo’s ThinkPad X1 Fold is the world’s first foldable PC, built around a 13-inch OLED touchscreen.

It can be held like a book, folded into a mini-laptop with a touchscreen keyboard, used with an optional keyboard that’s stored and charged inside the system to create a more traditional PC experience, and used as a pen-based tablet.

It’s powered by 11th Gen Intel processors, and offers 8GB of RAM, up to 1TB of storage, and can be equipped with 5G support. Pre-orders are open now with the device expected to ship in the next few weeks.

BANG & OLUFSEN BEOREMOTE HALO REMOTE

Streaming services are by far the most popular way to listen to music. Unfortunately, that normally means pulling out your phone — a gateway to distraction.

Bang & Olufsen recognized this and came up with a solution with the Beoremote Halo. The rare remote that’s worthy of display, its ring-like chassis integrates a touchscreen display that turns on when approached, showing both favorites and built-in music sources.

It has both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi for wireless connectivity, and will automatically choose the correct technology based on the situation.

Until now, to get a whole view of your home when you’re not there required cameras in every room.

Ring’s new Always Home Cam is here to change that. It’s a fully autonomous drone built for indoor use, with 1080p recording/streaming and the ability to automatically fly to certain areas on command, or when a Ring Alarm detects a disturbance.

While home security is the top priority, it can also be used to check on things as simple as if the oven’s been left on or a door left open. It automatically returns to its camera-blocking charging base when necessary, and has both enclosed propellers and obstacle avoidance to prevent damage to property and/or pets. Arriving in 2021.

Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. The circle of life. Call it what you want, but none of us are getting out of here alive, and it would behoove us all to treat our planet the best we can.

With Loop Cocoon, that includes after we’re gone. Billed as the world’s first living coffin, it’s made from mushroom mycelium, which helps the body “compost” while simultaneously enriching the soil to encourage the growth of new trees and plants.

Mycelium is known for its ability to turn waste into nutrients, is 100% natural, and grows so fast that each cocoon takes only a week to grow without the need for electricity or artificial light — making this perhaps the most eco-friendly way to leave the Earth.

OCULUS QUEST 2 VR HEADSET

Normally when you see a “2” in a product name, it’s a direct replacement for what came prior. Oculus’ Quest 2 is more than that. Inside its lighter, redesigned all-in-one form factor sits Qualcomm’s Snapdragon XR2, offering higher AI capability and 6GB of RAM.

This, along with a new display offering 50% more pixels (1832 x 1920 pixels per eye), means even more realistic visuals. It ships with new Touch controllers and has both built-in hand-tracking and a built-in IPD adjustment mechanism.

The resulting product outpaces both the refresh rate and resolution of the hardwired Rift S; as a result, the Quest 2 is a replacement for both the original Quest and Oculus’ PC VR solution (via a high-speed cable), and the company will focus solely on standalone VR headsets moving forward.