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This article was published 25/1/2015 (2297 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Virtual keyboard very cool
WITH the Virtual Keyboard from Brookstone, you type like there's a keyboard there, even though there isn't.
That might not make sense, but this is a really cool pocket-sized device. Just pair the hardware with any Bluetooth device you want to use.
Turn it on and lay the virtual keyboard -- which uses laser projection -- on any flat surface. Optics track your fingers typing, which communicates with the device you paired the keyboard with.
It projects a keyboard approximately 28 centimetres wide by 10 centimetres high.
A display shows key features such as your battery level, caps lock, volume, sensitivity settings and brightness.
The three sensitivity levels are for different light conditions and even for those who have painted fingernails. Different modes can be set for how you position your fingers and wrist for typing and using it as a mouse.
An internal, rechargeable battery will last for about two hours of continuous typing.
DETAILS: US$119.99; brookstone.com.
'smart bag' delivers
THE Phorce Freedom over-the-shoulder messenger 'smart bag' holds everything you would expect, but also charges a pair of USB devices inside the bag.
The main compartment holds a whopping 15,000mAh, lithium-ion rechargeable battery that can charge devices simultaneously, including tablets and smartphones.
The battery is built with intelligent connectors that automatically supply the proper voltage to each device.
The bag is coated with natural canvas and has dark gun-metal hardware. Its water-resistant fabric and waterproof zippers will help keep the contents dry.
If you prefer, the bags strap splits into two, converting the shoulder bag into a backpack. Or just take off the straps entirely and use it as a briefcase.
A micro-USB cable is included for charging the battery.
DETAILS: US$199; available in black; phorce.com.
Opener a magic wand
THE Chicexecs Magic Opener isn't really magic, but I think it's cool, so I'll tell you about it.
It's designed to open any bottle or can on the planet and is especially good for anyone suffering from arthritis or other hand ailments.
Sometimes even bottles with a twist-off cap can be a challenge for your hands, but not with this magic.
It's advertised as "No strain, no pain, perfect for seniors, kids and gentle on hands." After using it on a few bottles, I can tell you it's all that.
A magnetic back makes it easy to store and find the bottle-shaped opener.
The original (US$19.99) opens bottles and soda cans, while the "extreme" version (US$24.99) will open canned food as well.
One slick charging station
THE iDapt i4w Qi wireless charging station is as useful as it gets for charging multiple or single portable electronic gadgets, even some without a cord.
It's compatible with more than 5,000 devices and can charge up to four simultaneously.
If your device is Qi-enabled, all you do is lay it down on the flat part of the charging base to charge it.
In addition to the wireless charging, iDapt charging systems are known for their charging modular tips that are interchangeable.
There are five tips included: Two micro-USBs, one mini-USB and one each for newer and older iPhones. Additional tips can be purchased for US$9.99 each.
Any two of these can be put to use at the same time along with the Qi-enabled device. A fourth device can be charged out of the USB port with your own USB cable.
Built-in technology lets the charger sense what charge is needed for any device, enabling it to be charged at the correct speed.
DETAILS: US$59.99; idaptweb.com.
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