One of the coolest tech toys this year has to be WowWee’s JoeBot. I was kind of skeptical, as I am with many of these robot things that either don’t work or break in a day or two.
After receiving the JoeBot and unpacking it with my son, I was fearful that this guy might me a bit too technical or breakable for our household. As we pulled this sturdy guy from the packaging, I realized that Joe seemed to be a solid little guy.
Standing up, JoeBot is about a foot tall and weighs about 3 pounds. At first glance into the user manual, I instantly thought this was going to be a daddy and son toy as I did not think there was going to be any way that my 8 year old would be able to lead this sleek, technological robot all on his own. After going through a few of the touch and voice commands, my little guy took JoeBot by the arm and brought him into a room with a bunch of people…to show off all of his robotic talents.
Between his dance routine, battle mode, conversation mode, protection mode and his general voice commanded roaming around…this masterpiece can be hours of fun for both kids and adults. The touch commands are a breeze to master and in the right environment and with the right tone…the voice commands are a blast to play with.
I, without a doubt, believe that this robotic sensation is one of the Hottest Tech Products of 2009.
The Joebot robot is a content-packed, walking, interactive buddy with a sense of humor and
rhythm. Featuring voice command control, the Joebot robot is capable of responding to key phrases via sound sensors; he can also be controlled by his responsive hands or by the Robosapien™ robot's remote controller.
The Joebot robot is not your average Joe – in fact, he can beatbox and dance – just tap out a beat and he will repeat it perfectly while grooving along. His movements are fast and fluid, and he is able to avoid obstacles via infrared sensors or detect if he falls over with tilt sensors. Various modes include wandering, patrol, talk, guard and battle. In battle mode, for example, he will wander freely while tracking and blasting objects with his hand LEDs; you can even challenge him to a "duel" using any TV (IR) remote controller. Ages 8 and up. Available at www.discoverystore.com.
The CEIVA Digital Photo Frame (http://www.ceiva.com), is the one gift that can truly bring families together. With its easy set up and wireless (or hard wired) connectivity, this digital photo frame is one of the best that I’ve seen to date. With access as easy as the click of a mouse …or hitting send on your smart phone…this frame allows friends and family to keep even the most technologically ‘slow’ relatives hip deep in the latest family photos.
When I began the set-up of this photo frame I walked through the wireless set-up and before I knew it…it was up and running. The whole set up only took me about 10 minutes and then I began uploading photos to the online photo server. The process is simple and can be done by simply emailing images to the frame’s individual email address.
I instantly raved…to all who would listen…that this frame was definitely the best of its kind on the market. Even though there is an annual membership fee…I think that it is well worth it…especially for those of us with family spread all over the country.
The frame accepts photos DIRECTLY from iPhones or BlackBerries and INSTANTLY displays them. The frame connects through Wi-Fi or simply through existing phone lines. You don't need to upload anything and it is as easy to use as it is to send an email!
Through the CEIVA PicturePlan membership, your friends and family can email you photos as soon as they are taken so you don't have to miss out on any of the fun. You can wake up to new photos daily next to your bed, or walk by new pictures that are hanging on your wall -- you don't have to be tied down to your PC or laptop to look at new photos that have been emailed to you anymore. Even if you aren't tech-savvy you can use it!
V-Moda’s Faze headphones make my Hottest Tech Products list this year due to their amazing comfort and sound quality. I know that there is not much one can say about cell phone headphones, but these are definitely my favorite so far. The buds fit perfectly into my ears and seamlessly block out all background noise…so that I can hear the digital stereo sound the way it is supposed to be heard.
With so many choices on the market today, I recommend that you all go out and pick up a pair of these as I guarantee that you won’t be disappointed. If you are not into Bluetooth…go V-Moda!!!!
The Faze headphones include a fashion-forward design and an upgraded listening experience at an affordable price. Universally compatible with all iPhone and iPod products, Faze provides a hands-free microphone and call/music control button that allows users to transition between answering calls and listening to music. At $49.99, these headphones will give consumers a high quality, fashionable headphone without breaking the bank.
Plantronics’ Discovery 975 Bluetooth headset is the hottest choice for those of you who like to sport the coolest Bluetooth headset. Its sleek design and amazing level of comfort and sound quality put the 975 at the top of the list when it comes to Bluetooth. Along with its cool little charger/carrying case, this little tech wonder should be the envy of Bluetooth makers world-wide.
Its very stylish and extra light design allow users to feel as though they don’t have some big clunky thing hanging from their ear. I can barely tell that I have it on when I am using it and it being so slim and sleek makes it less of an eye-sore for those ‘anti-Bluetooth’ folks out there.
Boasting more than 15 hours of talk time per charge…I don’t know if there are any other units around that can match that. There is nothing worse than forgetting to charge your Bluetooth…other than using it and having it run out of power…That just won’t happen with this little miracle from Plantronics.
The Discovery 975 Bluetooth headset ($129) was designed to be sleek and stylish. Voted Editor's Choice by CNET in August, the 975 allows you to stay connected on the go without sticking an obtrusive gadget to your face.
The Discovery 975 is available at Best Buy, Verizon stores, Apple stores, AT&T Stores, Radio Shack and Sprint stores as well as online.
Epson's WorkForce 610
This machine boasts a sleek black look, is no bigger than a typical toaster oven and does absolutely everything. Besides printing about 40 pages per minute, the WorkForce 610 also serves as a fax machine, scanner, copy machine and digital media card reader. Designed brilliantly to connect via USB to any computer or independently onto a network via WiFi or Ethernet, the WorkForce now services many of our technological needs…all in one place.
Scanning the directions and knowing the delicate state of our home network…I had some concerns about trying to set it up wirelessly. I decided to try anyway. After all was said and done…it was a snap! The whole thing was set up in about 15 minutes and there was no (typical) trial and error. It just ran through the set up and we were all printing in no time. It amazes me how something so technologically advanced can be so simple to operate.
One of the really cool things is the fact that our daughter, who lives out back in the guest house, can use her wireless laptop and print things straight to my desk.
The printer retails for $199 - but if you go to the Epson store today you can pick up one of these bad boys for only $99.
*see my full review here!
OhMyBod’s Freestyle ‘personal massager’ is a dream come true. Either for a couple or a woman with a sense for good music and a gentle touch…this little guy is simply amazing.
When we tried this sleek vibrator for the first time, It was both simple…yet packed with choices…designed to suit anyone’s intimate desires.
Freestyle is the world's first wireless iPod "massager". It vibrates wirelessly to the beat and rhythm of the music on your iPod or other mp3 players.
Not having an iPod of my own, we had to swipe one of the kid’s iPods for this test. The music packed on the iPod was…not the best for what we had planned, but none the less, we easily achieve the g’O’al. We took turns at the controls of this vibrator as it can be used wirelessly or plugged into an iPod.
For those of you who like to add toys to your bedroom activities…and even for those of you who won’t admit it…log on and get yourself one of these technologically advance sex toys…you won’t be disappointed!!!!
This latest wireless release is pure luxury. Freestyle comes with all the bells and whistles you would expect in a luxury pleasure product. It is rechargeable, splash proof, has a custom travel case and adapters so that you can take it with you anywhere you may travel. Freestyle is available for $130 at OhMiBod.com and select retail outlets/retailers worldwide.
TuneUp Utilities 2010 is a product that came to me just at the right time. I was on the fence about throwing my entire computer out of the freaking window. To give you a bit of the back story…My computer was once an office computer, then a kids’ computer…then became mine. Needless to say there has been a ton of junk downloaded onto this machine, a bunch of re and uninstalls and mountains of garbage stored within its weak walls.
I go through phases where my computer is so sluggish that I can literally click a button to open Word, walk away, get some coffee, go to the bathroom and still have to wait for the program to open. This has all changed now. Once I installed TuneUp Utilities 20100, I no longer have to take anti-anxiety meds before sitting down at my computer.
It performs regular check on my system, allows me to speed things up with the click of a button…in Turbo Mode, and lets me know what system issues need to be fixed to keep things running fast.
This one little program saved me from having to go out and buy a new computer…and saved my ancient beast from going to the computer graveyard.
I have to say that as far as software is concerned…this version of TuneUp Utilities is by far the Hottest of its kind.
New to the 2010 version, TuneUp Turbo Mode allows users to temporarily switch off a large number of unnecessary background processes—with a single click. Consumers will see fewer program interruptions and an increase in the frames per second (FPS) in games.
TuneUp Live Optimization monitors and prevents background programs from using up too much of the PC’s resources. The function helps improve programs’ startup and response times, even when computers are bogged down with a number of applications running simultaneously. This is a great way for busy parents to keep their computers in shape and it's cheaper than purchasing a new PC.
TuneUp Utilities 2010 can be purchased via download at www.tune-up.com and also as a box in stores. The software, which can be used on up to three computers, costs $49.95, and users of previous software versions can upgrade to the latest one for a discounted price of $29.95.