Must have gadgets 

Michaela Bobulinski

 May 27, 2021

This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-SA

Technology seems to be moving fast. Every year there are new gadgets available that just a few years ago would have seemed impossible. Top brands like NetBet online casino always keep up with the latest technology to satisfy their customers. So let us have a look at the must-have gadgets of this year so far.

Digital radio Elan Connect + from Pure

What do you actually want from a kitchen radio? A small takeaway item that can run on batteries if necessary. Not that much, actually. Just play the radio, preferably with a few station buttons, to always have your favorite stations at hand. In this respect, the Elan Connect + from Pure is actually completely overqualified for the job.

Because the device, which is hardly bigger than a cigar box, can not only receive digital channels via the DAB + standard. It can also connect to WiFi and then play thousands of internet stations. A built-in Bluetooth receiver can also be connected to smartphones to listen to music or podcasts from streaming services, for example. And of course, it can also play normal, analog FM radio.

Amazingly, all of this turned out to be very easy to use – provided you have already used a device such as a CD player or something similar. A button switches between the different reception modes; one brings you back to the previous level. The only thing you might not find out without a manual is that you have to press and hold the large rotary button to switch it off. And if you have an internet router without a WPS button for easy connection, you will curse the fiddly entering of the password.

With such a compact radio, the sound cannot, of course, meet the highest demands. It is pretty much in the middle, treble, and bass could be more pronounced, and some Bluetooth speakers do not cost a lot better. If you want to hear how good digital radio sounds, plug good headphones into the analog headphone jack that is also available. The sound is clear and differentiated. 20 station buttons can be assigned per channel. Two can be reached directly with a button, 18 more via a menu – space enough for your favorite stations, and actually quite overqualified for such a small kitchen radio.

Incidentally, the Connect + gets its power via micro-USB, every commercially available charger works, and it also works on the laptop via the USB socket. Anyone who connects the device to the Internet also receives software updates. That you would experience this with a kitchen radio is also a special experience.

Conclusion: The Elan Connect + is the kitchen radio for everyone who loves it versatile.

Cheap smartphone Poco M3 from Xiaomi

Exciting times: It is not only easy to buy a smartphone for more than 1000 euros. What is even more fascinating is that devices suitable for everyday use are available for less than 100 euros. The Chinese tech company Xiaomi has succeeded in bringing such a smartphone onto the market with the Poco M3. To the horror of the competition, to the delight of the users.

Xiaomi was founded in China ten years ago. The tech group now produces everything possible for everyday digital life: from vacuum cleaner robots to smart air pumps to, of course, smartphones. Last year, the Chinese ranked third in global sales statistics, behind Apple and Samsung. If you take a look at the Poco M3, you will understand why.

The Poco brand was launched two years ago, is actually independent, but cannot deny similarities to its mother, Xiaomi. It starts on a positive note with flawless workmanship. The front of the device is dominated by a 6.53-inch display with a small recess for sensors and lenses. Even quite acceptable stereo speakers are built-in. A fingerprint sensor in the on / off button is used to unlock, alternatively, the device recognizes the user’s face, but this is hardly recommended: It only works with a less secure two-dimensional recognition method.

There are three lenses on the back of the M3 – but only the main camera can be used. It takes beautiful photos in daylight. Anyone who loads the Google GCam app onto the device will take great pictures – thanks to the clever algorithms – even at dusk. The back of the M3 is slightly ribbed, in the colors grey, blue or yellow. Despite normal dimensions and a weight of just under 200 grams, the Poco M3 has a very strong battery with 6000 mAh. Two days of use are no problem. For comparison: the battery in the ten times more expensive Samsung flagship S21 Ultra delivers only 5000 mAh.

As the operating system, Xiaomi relies on an adapted Android – which unfortunately occasionally displays advertisements. For a price of 120 euros, recently reduced to 80 euros in the offer, the Poco M3 is the ideal smartphone for infrequent users who hardly have to compromise apart from the advertisements.

Microsoft dual-screen phone

Is there such a thing as phantom pain in the tech industry? Be that as it may, Microsoft has been working on a smartphone again despite the billion-dollar fiasco with the Lumia smartphones taken over by Nokia. The result is the Surface Duo, which has been around in the USA for a few months and now also in Europe.

The duo in the name comes from the fact that the smartphone looks as if two very flat cell phones have been connected to the long edge with a hinge. It can be opened and closed like a book, but it can also be folded down completely so that one of the two screens is at the front and the other is at the back.

Turned this way, the duo can be used as a conventional smartphone. But of course, it unfolds its charm in double operation. Not by using the two screens as one large area, as one might assume. This is possible, but a bar divides the screen in the middle.

No, that’s not what the duo is made for. Rather, it should help office workers to be able to work reasonably well on the go, for example by processing e-mails on the train without having to take a notebook on their knees. The double smartphone shows the inbox on the left and the open message on the right. It’s convenient and works well. With other apps, you have to work your way into it a little until they are arranged in the way that suits you.

Because Microsoft is using Android as the operating system this time, there are no problems with the app selection. The fact that the Lumia cell phones were far too sparse ultimately put an end to the actually good Windows smartphone system. The screens are sharp and sufficiently bright. The battery is – understandably, given the two screens – no endurance runner. The camera, however, has to be called a weak point.

However, since the focus is clearly on the business target group, this is less important than with a consumer device. The price is 1549 or 1649 depending on the memory configuration. You could sooner see that the duo does not master the 5G standard. The installed Android 10 is also no longer the latest. Android 11 will not be delivered for the duo until the summer – Google is already introducing its successor. The target group for the Surface Duo should be pretty small.

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