It’s that time of year, the one where there’s nothing going on. It’s just sort of cold and drab; boring. We’re dying for some excitement, and considering experiences are risky both due to the weather and the pandemic, we’ll have to settle on gizmos and gadgets to fill the void an empty calendar slate leaves. Good news: While 2021 was full of some truly phenomenal gadgets, the year ahead looks equally promising.
I can assure you that on this list we have no block chain, NFTs, or crypto bro recommendations, so proceed calmly knowing we left that discourse on Twitter. There are, also, only a few mentions of the metaverse, but please treat this as your disclaimer. These gadgets are all designed to help make your life easier, or just more beautiful, and they’re not just pictures of nicotine-addicted monkeys that you can steal with a right click. Whether you need a new TV to escape reality, or a new VR headset to escape reality, or a cocktail machine to escape reality, we’ve got something for you.
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I’m getting so powerful—maybe too powerful—and it’s all Tonal’s fault. Tonal makes lifting and resistance training truly easy and, even more, easily accessible from your own home. Which is great because I hate any sort of public weight training, something I’m sure I am not alone on. Tonal has a remarkably easy UI and gives data and feedback in a helpful manner. It also makes you feel great by keeping track of streaks and clear improvements.
Hisense 75″ U800GR 8K ULED Roku TV
That’s right I have an 8k TV, and no I’m not part of the global elite. 8k, like 5g, and 4k before it sounded like a luxury, but now that brands like Hisense, which focus on a more affordable end of the spectrum, have gotten some time with the tech, you can finally bring the deep color output and stunning detail into your living room. Calling it “affordable” may be a stretch, but compared to most 8k TV’s which all run over $5,000, it’s the most cost efficient version of the tech that we’ve got.
Google – Pixel 6 Pro
It’s time to ditch your iPhone. I said it. Google finally created a phone from top to bottom in-house, and it is easily the smartest option on the market. This device can live translate text and video, can automatically pull up info through google lens, and has one of the prettiest and most customizable UIs out there. Hell, this phone lets you make text convos whatever color you want! There’s never been a phone that so expertly bridged the gap between android and iOS until now, and the walls are closing in on the big A.
Oura Ring Generation 3
All the power of an Apple watch at the tip of your finger, or at the forearm of your finger—the part of your finger where you wear rings, damnit. The Oura Ring 3 tracks health and medical stats without any glowing screens or gaudy design. This is the one sleep tracker I’ve ever been able to comfortably wear, and it truthfully taught me a lot about my (terrible) recovery habits.
Dyson Purifier Humidify+Cool Formaldehyde
I have a confession. I’m a big damn nerd. The slightest bit of pollen or dander and I’m reaching for my inhaler and sniffling like a mad man. But while I just can’t win outside, Dyson created a machine that saves me for time at home. This new purifier doubles as a humidifier, plus it has a cooling function, making it the end all be all for stuffy, hot, dry apartments.
Sure you could always get smart bulbs. But where’s the ambiance, the style—the ritz? Nanoleaf has drastically expanded their portfolio of immersive and customizable accent lighting, from shapes to wood paneling. And the impossibly sleek lines blend right into the wall and can change color and dimness; they can also react to sound, should you prefer. It’s 2022, get some mood lighting.
The world of bar hopping may be making a slow return, but if we learned one thing over the last two years it’s that crowded bars and long waits aren’t always the move. If you, like me, can’t make a cocktail that’s not akin to lighter fluid, Bartesian has you covered. Bartesian is hardly the only home cocktail maker on the market, but it is, hands down, the best because it allows you to use your own spirits.
I didn’t know weights could be pretty, and yet here we are. These are the most design savvy set of weights out there, all bundled in a wonderfully accessible way. You may recognize tempo as the creator of one of the many workout mirrors on the market, (the twist with them is that it also acts as storage for your weights) but the new tempo move system allows you to easily connect your phone and their app to a TV, and follow along with all their ass kicking classes—but this time for a fraction of the price.
M1 Macbook Pro
Some people accuse me of being harsh on Apple. I am, but not because I don’t love them. It’s actually the sort of thing where, when you love something too much, they can easily leave you disappointed. That’s how I felt with 2019’s MacBook Pro, anyway. Being a designer, it was my go-to tool, and they absolutely bungled it. So, while the mobile district of Apple still leaves a lot to be desired, it was remarkably refreshing to watch them walk back to a more efficient, and far more powerful MacBook Pro recently. We have ports back, and we have power back. The fact that I can load this baby up with 64 gigs of RAM is a motion designer’s dream come true. More of this please, Apple.
Every year that goes by, VR becomes more consumer friendly. But from the game-changing release of the quest to the now-worrisome omens of the metaverse, you’d be forgiven for feeling mixed emotions on the virtual sphere. Let Vive goggles, which bring an extremely accessible and different approach to the VR world, change that. The Vive goggles are, well, a pair of goggles not unlike something you’d wear to snowboard. They’re extremely lightweight with a lightning fast set-up that’s geared towards things like watching Netflix, or meditation. It’s the calmest headset I’ve ever worn and uses cameras to let you control everything with just your hands. This one’s for the not-gamers.
Osma Pro pre-order
This has got to be one of the prettiest espresso machines ever. Simple design, easy to use, and a beautiful addition to your countertop. Also, it makes a damn good shot of espresso.
LARQ Pitcher PureVis™
Ditch your Britta, because Larq just made your water cleaner with light technology. The best part is it somehow manages to taste clean too—and while I thought it may be a placebo, I’ve forced friends, family, and strangers to compare, and they all agree. Even if you don’t care about clean water, you’ll care about that, right?
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