Our favourite tech from IFA 2017
From watches and toothbrushes to app-controlled Star Wars toys and robo-cleaning, a huge array of new products were unveiled by the biggest names in the tech industry...
IFA is Europe’s biggest consumer electronics show, and we’ve been checking out some of the goodies that will be hitting the shops in time for Christmas.
We round up our favourite new gadgets and gizmos from the event in Berlin.
Garmin’s trio of fitness watches
In a nutshell: Track your walks and runs, and monitor your heart rate with Garmin’s new wearable tech
- Vivoactive 3: With its heart rate variability monitor, this smartwatch can track stress levels over time. It also comes with Garmin Pay. That means you can use your watch to pay for a smoothie or grab a bite to eat while on the go.
- Vivomove HR: Garmin’s first hybrid touchscreen smartwatch blends a classic analogue watch face with a digital display, so is great if you prefer the look of a traditional watch but still want smart capabilities.
- Vivosport: If you want to focus purely on fitness, this GPS-enabled activity tracker does the job nicely. It’s a slim, lightweight wristband that keeps running for seven days in smartwatch mode and up to eight hours in GPS mode.
Neato Botvac D7 Connected
In a nutshell: A smart vacuum cleaner that can map your room and report obstacles that get in its the way
Want a robot to clean up for you? Neato claims its smart vacuum is the "most powerful, connected and intelligent robot vacuum you will ever own".
An exciting new feature enables you to set no-go lines on an app on your smartphone or tablet. The D7 creates a cleaning map of a room so you can draw lines where you don’t want your Botvac to go. It also highlights obstacles that prevent it from doing its job.
Loads of other smart home tech was unveiled at IFA too, including the Samsung QuickDrive™ washing machine.
In a nutshell: The latest app-controlled Star Wars toy with added lights
A couple of years ago, Sphero introduced its BB-8 toy, a replica of the cute rolling droid that first appeared in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. It’s now brought to life BB-9E, who is set to appear in The Last Jedi, which comes out in December.
Like with BB-8, the new droid can be controlled using an iOS or Android app. But, unlike BB-8, its head lights up. The perfect gift for Star Wars fans...
Who is BB-9E? It's an evil version of BB-8, and a member of the First Order.
Sony LF-S50G speaker
In a nutshell: Smart speaker with Google Assistant, gesture control and LED clock
Sony’s new voice-controlled smart speaker runs with Google Assistant, so you simply activate it using the command ‘OK, Google’. It can answer questions and control smart home appliances as well as play music.
The sleek, cylindrical-shaped speaker also has gesture control, which means you can alter the volume and choose a song from your playlist just by waving your hand over the top of the device.
It’s got an LED screen to display the time, as well as Bluetooth to stream music instantly to it.
Philips smart toothbrush
In a nutshell: The smartest toothbrush around – discover which parts of your mouth you’re not cleaning properly
Dental tech doesn’t get its fair share of the limelight, but Philips wants to make oral care cool with its new smart toothbrush. The Sonicare Diamond Clean isn’t just a toothbrush, it’s an ‘oral health platform’, according to Philips
It uses a series of sensors in the brush head to communicate through a smartphone app, showing you which parts of your mouth aren’t getting enough attention. That should help you avoid too many trips to the dreaded dentist…