Hottest new tech in June revealed – Asus notebook, UE Roll 2 speaker and Philips 4K Blu-ray player
Want the lowdown on the latest tech? Here’s our edit of the gadgets we’re currently loving…
A powerful laptop with a stylish design
In a nutshell: Asus brings us a super-sleek compact laptop that doesn’t compromise on specs
Laptops are getting thinner and lighter than ever these days, and Asus’ new notebook is no exception. It weighs just 910g and measures 11.9mm in thickness.
The Zenbook 3 also looks pretty luxurious in a sleek aluminium finish with gold detail. Choose from 3 colours – Royal Blue, Rose Gold or Quartz Grey.
Don’t be fooled by the shiny exterior though, it packs a pretty powerful performance. The hard drive runs incredibly fast thanks to the Intel Core i7 processor and 16GB of RAM – while inside the ‘world’s thinnest fan’ provides extra-efficient cooling, so it won’t overheat during demanding tasks. Plus you’ll have plenty of room for all your programs with 1TB storage.
From watching movies and TV, to browsing the net and editing photos – everything you do will look great on the high-resolution 12.5-inch screen. While the Harman Kardon quad-speaker gives you powerful sound for listening to all your favourite tracks.
A house bot the whole family can use
In a nutshell: Meet Zenbo, the family-friendly bot who can help you around the house
While the idea of having robots in our homes still feels a bit like something out of a film, Asus’ voice-activated robot could be the first step in making it a reality.
Zenbo syncs up with all your smart home devices. Screen visitors using the built-in camera and he’ll unlock the door to them. Or have him by your side when you’re cooking to read recipes out loud or for timing different dishes. And have peace of mind when you’re away – he can act as a remote-controlled security camera you can watch from the smartphone app.
With his cute, smiley face, Zenbo is a robot the whole family will enjoy. Keep the kids entertained with a host of interactive games and a music player, as well as a built-in encyclopaedia to help with their homework.
Or if you have older family members who live far away, get Zenbo to help them stay on top of their health by reminding them of doctor’s appointments or when it’s time to take medication.
UE’s portable speaker for travelling
In a nutshell: A sturdy, ultra-durable speaker for taking with you on your travel
Make Ultimate Ear’s new portable wireless speaker your travel companion this summer. Take it almost anywhere, with a bungee cord loop for attaching to your backpack, belt loop or bike. It’s so light you won’t even notice it’s there – weighing just over half a pound.
Listening to your holiday playlist at the beach or by the pool? It’s waterproof, so you don’t need to worry about damage. In fact, you can even float it next to you in the pool, as it comes with a special UE Floatie device.
As for audio quality, the Roll 2 has a host of enhanced specs – making it a seriously powerful speaker. With it you’ll get 15% more sound and a wider wireless range of up to 100ft, so you don’t need to keep your smartphone next to it to play your music.
If you’re travelling with mates, sync it up with a second UE speaker to double up your sound. Or take turns playing DJ by using the ‘Block Party’ mode on the UE Roll 2 app that lets you and your mates each sync up your smartphones.
Philips’ 4K Blu-ray player gets set for release
In a nutshell: Philips joins the line-up of 4K UHD Blu-ray players to hit the shelves this year
We first saw it at CES earlier this year, and now Philips’ 4K Blu-ray player is finally set for release in the US – joining Panasonic and Samsung in bringing the ultra-high definition disc format to our screens.
Philips has pulled out all the stops to guarantee a futureproof model – as well as playing 4K Blu-ray discs, it’s also HDR-compatible. And for even more choice about what to watch, you can stream 4K content direct to your TV with the Netflix and YouTube apps pre-loaded.
There’s no need to cast out your existing movie collection either. The model can upscale regular Blu-rays and DVDs to near-4K quality – so you’ll still get an improved picture.
Connectivity won’t be an issue, with Ethernet and built-in Wi-Fi as well as a USB port and 2 HDMI outputs for plugging in all your devices.
First Google Project Tango smartphone revealed
In a nutshell: Lenovo Phab 2 Pro is the first ever Tango-enabled smartphone that lets you experience augmented reality (AR) on your device
What is Tango? A new type smartphone technology developed by Google that uses sensors to recognise movement and physical space. All of this works to change the way you see and interact with your surroundings.
The Phab 2 Pro works with specially created apps to give you access to a range of AR experiences. Some of the things you’ll be able to do with it include:
- Play AR games such as virtual dominos or look after a cute digital pet
- Teach interactive lessons in schools – in one app students can project true-to-scale virtual dinosaurs around their classroom
- Use it when you’re redecorating by measuring spaces and seeing how different furnishings look in your kitchen or bedroom.