New for 2016 fitness, grooming, and more gadgets that you need on your radar.
Madeline Buxton 1 / 13
2016 has barely started and it’s already shaping up to be a year of major tech innovations and releases. We’re talking fitness trackers that don’t need charging for months on end, high-end, virtual reality headsets that upgrade your gaming, and computers that make traveling for work all the more manageable. Some of these were highlights at CES, the consumer electronics show, where most of the major tech reveals take place, while others are already on the market and ready for you to bring home. Whether you’re hitting the gym, unwinding with a beer on the couch, or heading to the office, this is the tech that will make your life smarter, faster, and better. Get ready to gear up.
Want to run trails in Montana but stuck in the city? iFit’s upcoming NordicTrack Escape Treadmill (slated for a December 2016 release at around $8,000) is for you. While the company has already created some pretty cool escapist workout equipment, the NordicTrack model makes the experience more expansive with a 60-inch curved OLED TV. The screen, attached to the front of the treadmill, lets you access Google Street View on your runs so you can imagine you’re logging miles in rugged terrain. Plus, the treadmill moves in sync with the landscape you’re running in, meaning you’d better be prepared to hit some bumps.
Garmin is calling its quatix 3 “the smartwatch that belongs on water” and it’s hard to disagree. The watch comes equipped with marine apps that provide tide data and sailing stats while also tracking your rowing cadence and estimating your VO2 max, the ultimate indicator of how fit you are. At $599.99, the yet-to-be-released watch isn’t cheap, but given that it also functions for on-land activities including running and hiking, it’s a worthwhile investment.
Samsung’s laptops are getting an upgrade with two new 15- and 13-inch models. Clocking in at just over 2.8 lbs and 1.8 lbs, respectively, the latter is the lightest laptop in the world. Both computers (available early this year) also boast extended battery life (12 hours and 10 hours) and extra security measures to keep your most important work information on lockdown. Suit up, because these aren’t your average PCs.
Think of this as the smartphone that’s ready to take on any adventure. The Kyocera Hydro VIEW is completely waterproof and impact resistant. While we’re not recommending you take calls in the ocean, with a starting retail of $59.99, this phone is a great deal for the more accident-prone among us.
While some smart watches might not pair well with the wild (you don’t really need to track your steps on the AT trail), Casio’s new watch, retailing for about $500 and hitting stores in early April, not only looks ready to take on the wilderness, it actually has the capabilities to do so. Built specifically for trekking, cycling and fishing, the Android-powered watch features everything from atmospheric pressure measurement to a tide graph and altitude measurement. Plus, it syncs with apps including ViewRanger GPS, Runkeeper, and MyRadar. Strap this baby on your wrist and you’re good to go.
The latest tracking device from Fitbit aims to make your workouts even smarter than they already are. Fitbit Blaze ($199.95; available for preorder) looks slightly similar in appearance to the Apple watch with it’s slim, square-ish frame, but while it also provides smartphone notifications, the focus here remains on fitness. Connected GPS, multi-sport mode (which lets you keep track of everything from lifting sessions to runs), and on-screen personal trainer workouts through FitStar make it easy to take your workouts to the next level.
This might just be the trimmer of the future, or at the very least, the trimmer of 2016. Available now for pre-order ($179.95), the Bevel Trimmer is cord-free and stays fully charged for over four hours. Plus, the blades snap on and off making it easier to switch them up. Whether you’re taking this on the road or keeping it at home, shaving is about to get a lot better.
Under Armour’s first step into the tracking world is a bold one. The brand’s $400 HealthBox, available on February 15th, comes equipped with three devices: a smart band, scale, and heart rate chest strap. While each has features that are similar to other tracking devices on the market, the combination of all three is what makes HealthBox such an exciting addition to the field. You’ll have all your stats in one place, making it easier to track your progress and know where to focus your training efforts.
If HealthBox is Under Armour’s foray into into smart gadgets, the SpeedForm Gemini 2 Record Equipped is its approach to smart gear. The brand’s popular sneaker has a cool tech twist: an embedded chip that tracks your distance, stride length, and more. This means that you can leave your phone and smart watch at home and stay focused on pounding the pavement. The shoes hit stores on February 29th and retail for $150.
Withings trackers are known for their clean, simple design and their latest product, Withings Go, stays in sync. Using E Ink, the tracker ($69.95) works as a watch and shows you your progress towards a daily goal that you set within the accompanying app. You’ll get running and swimming stats as well as sleep analysis within the app but what really sets the tracker apart from the competition is its 8-month long battery. That’s 8 months of no charging. Can you ask for more?
State-of-the-art virtual reality is alive and, well, real. Oculus Rift, available now for preorder ($599) and expected to ship in March, comes with a headset, Xbox One controller, and remote that are guaranteed to take your gaming experience to a whole new level. This is immersive viewing at its best and is an exciting first look at what virtual reality can offer you at home. Expect many more VR headsets to hit stores throughout the rest of 2016.
Misfit, like Withings, is all about clean design. Their latest wearable, Ray ($99.99; available for pre-order), has a 6-month battery life and is meant to be worn all day, every day. Similar to other Misfit products, you might not know it’s a tracker just by looking at it, but the simple aluminum Ray gives you notifications (via vibrations) about incoming calls and texts while also measuring distance, sleep duration, and more. It’s attractive enough that you can get away with wearing it everywhere from the boardroom to happy hour.