Best new travel gadgets 2019 – from camera phones to noise-cancelling headphones – The Sun
November 2, 2019
HAVING the right gadgets could make all the difference when you’re travelling, whether it means getting better holiday photos or some much needed rest on a flight.
But with so many new products out there, it can be hard to narrow down the right ones.
With this in mind, Sun Online Travel has picked some of the best new gadgets you should look out for this year.
They suit a wide range of budgets, are light weight, and will make your life easier whether you’e travelling for work or pleasure.
So from smartphones to noise-cancelling headphones, we reveal the new gadgets you should look out for:
The smartphone with a great camera
When it comes to smartphones, there are lots of options to choose from – and plenty offering picture quality that competes with bigger DSLR cameras.
Google’s Pixel 3 is one of the best out there thanks to its high resolution cameras and a function called Night Sight, which helps you to take day-time quality photos in low light situations.
When we tested this out in restaurants, we got clearer, brighter pictures than the standard camera setting and there’s no horrible orange hue.
Your photos are also backed up to Google Pictures so if you lose your phone, you won’t lose your holiday snaps.
Then there’s Google Assistant, which alerts you to when your flight is taking off, if it’s delayed and even what gate it’s leaving from.
But the other surprise we found was the battery life.
The phone charges up incredibly quickly – up to 7 hours use from 15 minutes of charge – and a full charge will last the whole day even with some heavy use.
There are three versions of the phone. The 3 and 3XL are the same phone but at different sizes. There’s also the 3a, which is a slightly pared-down version – it doesn’t offer wireless charging for example, but it is much cheaper.
With the Pixel 4 having just launched, you should be able to find some great phone-only deals if you shop around.
For the sim-free option, we found Pixel 3 on Laptop Direct for £549
The ultimate powerbank
A battery pack is extremely handy when you’re travelling, especially if you use your phone a lot.
We think we’ve found the ultimate powerbank in the Mophie Powerstation XXL.
The manufacturers promises 73 hours of charge and we’ve found that it will easily charge a couple of phones back to full in no time.
We found that it charged up our smartphone to full in no time and we could use it over three days (after charging it overnight) without needing to recharge it.
Plus, there are two USB ports so you can charge two devices at the same time.
If you have an Apple Macbook, it might even be worth going the next level up, to Mophie Powerstation USB-C XXL – it will give your Macbook up to 14 hours of extra charge.
Be warned, the bigger model retails over £100 – although you can find it on Amazon for just under £90.
The headphones that will help you sleep
Getting some rest while travelling can be one of the biggest challenges.
While Kokoon‘s headphones might not make your economy plane seats more comfortable, they at least promise to help you get some rest.
The headphones are designed to be used with their free app, which features a number of audio tracks that use Cognitive Behavioural Therapy to help you drift off to sleep.
They are even equipped with sensors so that the sound gradually fades out as you fall asleep.
When we tried them at home, we fell asleep within minutes – but in the air, it was a lot more challenging.
While the headphones were perfect for watching an in-flight film thanks to the noise cancelling technology, listening to the audio tracks didn’t have quite the same relaxing effect.
That said, it was incredibly helpful for adjusting to a new time zone in the comfort of a hotel room.
The new gadget is far from cheap though, retailing at £349.99 on its official website – although we managed to find it for £322.49 on Amazon.
The durable portable speaker
Whether your getaways are all about days out at the beach, or camping away from the crowd, having a portable speaker can be a helpful addition to keep everyone entertained.
Ultimate Ears’ WONDERBOOM 2 is a great option if you’re looking for something light and easy to carry.
But more than that, it has 13 hours of battery for each charge and is water, dust and even drop-proof – perfect for those days out.
Plus, there’s even an “Outdoor Boost” mode that helps improve sound quality when there’s a lot of background noise – like if you’re having a BBQ at home.
And if you have two Wonderbooms, you can pair them up to create stereo sound.
But if you’re not that bothered about the “Outdoor Boost”, it’s much cheaper to get the first generation Wonderboom instead.
We found it on Amazon for £49.99 and it has very similar functions, including being water and drop-proof.
The tool for budding film makers
If you love making videos of your travels, it might be worth getting a stabiliser, which helps to keep your footage steady.
We tested the PNY MOBEE Gimbal Stabilizer, which not only keeps your phone steady but also trains the camera to the pre-set position.
It means that as you’re walking around, there’s minimal shakes – plus, it will point to and film the exact object you want.
There are also different functions on the app you can use, including different zoom settings and slow motion.
And thanks to the in-built “power out connector”, you can even use it to charge your phone so you can keep filming for hours.
The downside is that it’s quite heavy, so you’re unlikely to be holding it up for long video sessions.
It’s also pretty expensive, with an RRP of around £90 – although it’s currently on Amazon for £86.45.
The gadget to keep track of your gadgets
If you’re the sort of person who loses your phone or your keys as soon as you enter a room, then a Tile Bluetooth tracker might be the gadget you need.
We tested out the recently launched Pro version, which has a 400ft range (compared to 300ft before) and the loudest ring of all their products – and it worked wonders.
Basically you use the app on your phone to call the Tiles, which will make a noise so you can locate it.
And if you manage to lose it somewhere else, it also has a tracker that will tell you where it was last spotted.
It even uses other Tile users to help you locate it.
We slipped one into our luggage and, happily, both turned up safe and sound.
A single tile starts from £29.99 on its official website.
The bag to carry your gadgets in
After shopping around, we found that one of the best backpacks around to carry your gadgets in is from the Targus CityLite range.
The one that’s best suited is the CityLite Security Backpack, which has zips at the back of the bag rather than the front, so it’s more secure against potential thieves.
There are also hidden pockets at the back and at the top so you can store your valuables while still having easy access to them.
Inside, there are several pockets where you can store different gadgets, including your laptop or tablet, and a zipped pocked lined with RFID blocking material so the data on your contactless cards is safe.
Best of all, it’s lightweight and adjustable, so you can easily use it on a day out.
If you’re more likely to travel for work, it might be worth investing in CityLite Premium.
It’s a lot heavier but it has lots more pockets and more room to store gadgets and keep any wires tidy.
It’s also convertible so you can carry it on its side as a weekend bag.
The CityLite Premium costs quite a bit more though – its RRP is £119.99 and it’s not much cheaper elsewhere. However, it’s still worth keeping an eye out on places like Amazon to see if the price drops.
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