Reach Indians and South East Asians living in Australia



There are some gadgets that make you go ‘hmm’, whether that ‘hmm’ is that of curios interest, wonder or just plain confusion. Here’s a selection out of a list that made us scratch our heads and pull out our hair.
1. Third Generation Apple Shuffle
The Apple Shuffle was a triumph in minimalist design. They fit into the palm of your hand, were not much bigger than a thumbnail, did not have a screen, and played music. But with the third generation, Apple took minimalism to a whole new level, even by their standards. The Third Generation Apple Shuffle had only one button called the ‘Center Button’. No matter what you wanted to do, you just had to press this button. To play or pause, you pressed it once. To go to the next track, you double-clicked it. To rewind or fast-forward, you either double-click and hold or triple click and hold. And so on.
2. Sony Tablet P
How can you trust anything which is called ‘P’? Not even when it’s Sony, as it turned out. Designed to resemble a book with a spine, the Tablet P contained two screens on either side that folded and clasped together neatly when you wanted to put it away. It all sounds peachy until you watch a video and see a black vertical spine running down the length of it. Maybe they thought people won’t mind seeing a thick black line running down the middle of their videos. Well, they did. The Sony Tablet P went out of the market sooner than it entered it.
3. Nexus Q
How much would you pay for a futuristic looking orb which opens up into a screen, with which you can stream videos and music from Google Play and Youtube? What’s that? Nothing? Correct answer. It’s a pity that Google had to create the product fully to learn that. Apart from looking like an overgrown squash ball, the Nexus had nothing else going for it, and owing to horrible customer reviews, it was never released into the market.
4. iPotty
This one made us laugh. Take the parenting effort out of toilet training your toddler. iPotty comes with a built-in tablet screen on which you can stream your baby’s favourite shows. Thomas the train engine? Bob the builder? Just play and plug, and wait for the work to be finished on its own. No hands.
5. Microsoft Kin
Every time a corporation underestimate the intelligence of customers, it seems that it gets burned. Microsoft thought that teenagers today are interested in nothing but social media, so they made a smart phone called Kin that had a social media feed on its main screen. And there was a green spot on the screen where you can drag and drop photographs. But did the customers like it? No. After a few fiddles, they went back to their iPhones. Microsoft went back to lick its Apple-inflicted wounds yet again.
6. Galaxy Gear
This is the newest craze: wearable tech. Everyone’s in on it. Apple recently procured a patent for a smartwatch. In its attempt to recreate the Dick Tracy watch, Samsung designed Galaxy Gear, which makes phone calls, takes photos, displays text messages and does your laundry. Oh, and yes, it displays the time. It did not catch on with customers because it seemed like the phone – er, watch – was trying to do too many things at once. We like our watches simple.
7. Google Glass
It may just be the device of the future, but right now, if you go out wearing a Google Glass, you will just look weird, like you’re straight out of Robocop or something. And not in a cool way. Talking to a ‘Glasshole’ makes you feel like you’re talking to a cyborg, and that is when you’re not getting annoyed at their constant tapping and recording without permission.
8. Betwine
There are some weird ideas out there if you care to look for them, but Betwine may just take the prize for being the weirdest. How would you like to wear a bracelet that tracks your activity? And by activity, I don’t mean things like your location and whereabouts – I mean actual physical activity. The bracelet monitors whether you’re sitting, standing, walking or running. And what’s more, it transmits the status to your friends, who can then nudge you by sending it a vibrating alert. While this may be a great add-on on a device, if that’s all it does, then it’s stretching it a bit. It doesn’t even look that good.
9. Gold electronics
This is probably not as weird, especially if you’re Indian. Madness for all things gold is built into our DNA. We find it weird if people do not get obsessed over gold. So there is a Las Vegas startup called Computer Choppers who will gold plate your electronics for you. For a small fee, of course. We think most of their clients will be Indians. Have we tried them out? Well, what can we say? We like our Macs white.
10. Moto X Tattoo
Motorola thinks that unlocking your phone is for losers. The cool way to do it is to get a tattoo which has a microchip in it, wear it on your arm, and then use a Moto X phone so that whenever you swipe it, it gets unlocked automatically. Oh, and the tattoo falls off after five days, so you have to keep buying a new one. We just think they’re stupid. Who uses a Moto X phone anyway?
11. Moodinq
If you’re into tattoos but don’t like the fact that they’re permanent, there is a (not so simple) solution for the likes of you. Get a MoodINQ and you can change your tattoo whenever you want. It costs $150 and it looks like a scanning machine. Instant tattoo whenever you need it. What’s the catch? Well, you need to first surgically implant an e-reader under your skin. And then you should subscribe to MoodINQ’s tattoo database. Anything for a tattoo, though, right?

Sucheta Roye

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