Jawbone Jambox Wireless Speaker ($180 to $300)
It's simply the smallest, greatest-sounding wireless speaker and speakerphone on the planet. The Jambox delivers stunning hi-fi audio in a portable wireless speaker so compact you probably won't believe it when you hear it. Unlike other portable speakers, the Jambox is powered by a pair of proprietary, highly sophisticated acoustic drivers, unmatched in their ability to produce extreme high and low frequencies from a single, ultra-small dome speaker.
While it can't match the sonic awesomeness of a Bose home stereo system, you'll be hard pressed to find a better portable speaker.
"It packs a surprising amount of punch for such a tiny device, and while it doesn't sound perfect, it's surprisingly good," says Will Greenwald, the consumer electronics analyst who reviewed the Jambox for PCMag.com.
Beats Mixr headphones ($225)
Everyone knows that Beats headphones are the hottest sellers in the world right now, but many are splurging on the wrong model. Most shoppers are opting for either the less expensive Beats Solo or the ultra-pricey Beats Pro. However, the Beats Mixr headphones (co-created by DJ David Guetta) are getting better reviews than both of them. Beats Mixr headphones deliver super-deep bass at extraordinarily high volumes as well as impeccable lows, highs and mid-range sounds. And the ultra-flexible lightweight headband allows for easy folding when on the go.
iHome iDM8 ($60)
At the office, in a bedroom, in the park, on a picnic or even at a campsite, it's nice to have a few tunes playing. But if you want a small, portable and rechargeable option that emits good audio quality and lets you take music from your and your friends' mobile devices, the iDM8 fits the bill. It supports Bluetooth audio streaming, as well as standard line-in cables, for playback from iOS, Android, and other mobile devices. You can even charge it from your computer via its MicroUSB cable.
Lytro Camera ($400)
This little tower-shaped gadget might look like just another novelty camera, but Lytro does what most people want in a point-and-shoot camera nowadays: the ability to just point and shoot and worry about focusing and brightness later. The Lytro is the world's first light field camera.
"The camera has only two buttons -- one for power and one for the shutter," explains Christina Bonnington, who reviewed the Lytro for Wired magazine. "All the processing is done with software, which enables the camera to assume a super simple, petite shape."
You can read more about the groundbreaking technology the Lytro uses at lytro.com, but essentially, it allows both the photographer and the viewer to focus pictures after they're snapped, shift their perspective of the scene and even switch seamlessly between 2-D and 3-D views.
Contour +2 POV Camera ($400)
This camera is for the thrill-seekers among us who want something a little more stylish than the GoPro cameras used at the X-Games. You can strap this camera to your helmet, your bike, your skis, your car, or anything else you'd like and record. This camera has a 170-degree field of vision and an easy slider to turn it on and off with ease while you're in the middle of the action.
Kodak Playfull HD Video Camera ($150)
Here's a pocket cam for a very small pocket. An addition to pocket cams of the likes of Soy Bloggie Touch and Flip UltraHD, this little video camera can go anywhere with you (including under water) and record decent video. Kodak has a very easy three-step sharing technology that makes uploading to social media a snap, and you can grab stills from your videos as well.
Nest Learning Thermostat ($250)
Who would have thought that a thermostat could be cool? Tony Fadell (one of the iPod's inventors), that's who. His start-up company has created the beautifully simple and simply beautiful Nest Learning Thermostat, which monitors your comings and goings and temperature preferences to both automate your heating and cooling and to reduce energy consumption. As you'd expect, you can manage and monitor it from your iPhone or other iOS device or from an Android device via Wi-Fi, as well as directly by turning its casing.
Garmin GPS NUVI 2455LT ($160)
While many people are ditching their GPS systems for Google Maps on their Android phones, the Garmin GPS NUVI 2455LT could lure many customers back. For only $160, you get a lifetime of map updates, hands-free voice command, and the Lifetime Traffic system that offers real-time traffic reports.
Kanex MySpot ($60)
When you're on the go, you likely carry multiple devices. But many hotels charge separate Wi-Fi access fees per device, and some still have just wired Ethernet ports in the rooms rather than Wi-Fi service (a common issue in conference rooms and conference stages as well). The Kanex MySpot is an ultraportable Wi-Fi router powered via USB, and it makes a wired Ethernet connection available to all your Wi-Fi-capable mobile devices. You can even password-protect your wireless connection.
Most Popular Stories
- Bipartisan Budget Deal Gets Key Support in House
- TFA Recruiting DACA Recipients
- Bitcoin Clones Lurch Onto Financial Scene
- Scotch Whisky Sales Raise Distillers' Spirits
- Clinton to Keynote Annual Simmons Leadership Conference
- Holiday Shopping Off to a Slow Start This Season
- Health Coverage Disparities Emerge Among States
- Podesta Likely to Reject Keystone XL
- Fake Deaf Interpreter Was Hallucinating, Has Schizophrenia
- Tea Party Glum in Face of Bipartisan Budget Deal