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Inspector Gadget hits Gizmoville

Fab bloggers invade The Reg

Tech Digest The Register may cover everything most sane people would ever want to know about technology, but for certified gadget obsessives Tech Digest and Shiny Shiny scour Gizmoville for the rest:

Obligatory iPod Accessory of the Week: Travel Soother

Why create a plain old Radio Alarm Clock when you can get a bit more coverage with an Apple iPod name check? Smart thinkers over at Sharper Image have concocted the Travel Soother. This not only plays you calming sounds to help you slumber, but also plugs into your iPod (and other music players) supplying an external speaker for you to listen to your music files out loud - although just how good the sound quality is going to be from one speaker remains to be heard.

Ebay Item of the Week: PSP

Those in the UK too impatient to wait for the official launch of Sony’s PSP, which of course launches Stateside this week, will be pleased to learn it’s already hot eBay property. Since the PSP isn’t now debuting in Europe until the summer, we’re expecting a re run of the Apple iPod mini eBay saga where large numbers of the players were sold by Americans to Europeans way in advance of its official worldwide launch. The current UK price for either a Japanese PSP on eBay is around £180. Alternatively for £145.59 games addict who can’t wait until the summer can order a Japanese import PSP from Hong Kong website lik-sang . Courier shipping costs £17 and the PSPs reportedly take 1-3 days to reach you. Although we’ll believe it when we see it.

Hard nut gadget of the week: Gotive H41

They may be entirely irrelevant to the majority of people, but there's something inherently appealing about ruggedised gadgets nonetheless. Maybe it's the bright colours, or the rubbery exteriors, or maybe it's just the promise that you can bash them about with no recriminations. Whatever it is, we're feeling enthusiastic about Gotive's H41 ruggedised PDA. As well as the GSM/GPRS data and voice capabilities, the H41 comes with a GPS function, Bar Code Reader and MMC and CF card slots. It's weather and drop resistant and the connectors are described as "unbreakable" which is surely asking for trouble. It runs on the WinCE NET OS and includes all the usual PIM software. It's pricey though - £990 excluding VAT from Smartdevices.

Tight Wad gadget of the week: O2 X4

O2 does a special line in budget handsets and now the X range has been joined by the latest affordable phone: the X4. O2’s X4 is the first in its series of home-grown 3G phones. Much smaller and lighter than the average 3G Behemoth, the X4 can download or stream, music, sports and comedy clips, but there’s no video calling and only one camera on the clamshell casing. There’s no Bluetooth either - so no chance of using it as a modem for your laptop. Features include a 1.3-megapixel camera, high resolution 262k colour screen, MP3 player, MMC slot and 10MB of storage on board. It’s out now for free.

Ridiculous Phone Accessory of the Week: Mojects Hugm

Emotionally constipated types can now send affection over their phones using the Mojects Hugm, saving them from any messy human contact. Squeeze the little Hugm stresh ball and it will relay the "Hhhuuugggg" message onto text or email (the harder you squeeze the longer the hug). The colour will also change depending on how hard you squeeze. The connection from the Hugm to your phone is via Bluetooth – so there really will be no touching in your life.

Over designed music player of the week: Asono Mica

Another day, another Korean player: but this time there’s a twist - it’s designed in Norway for added Scandinavian Cool. The headphones are integral to the lanyard, making it one to flaunt round your neck rather than just stuff in a bag, and the LCD display has been artfully concealed behind coloured plastic. With the 512MB version at roughly £130 and the 1GB costing £200 you’re certainly paying a premium for the design.

Quick Picks:

  • Nikon Coolpix S1 5.1-megapixel camera compact camera – a real rival for Sony’s ultra desirable DSC-T7
  • Pogo! Radio YourWay LX AM/FM recorder – the first US radio to feature integrated flash storage, so now Americans can pause and record live radio, just like the Brits have been doing for ages
  • TV in your taxi – Cabvision is adding 12inch LCD screens to London black cabs
  • Nokia 6680 - the first 3G phone from Nokia that lets you make person to person video calling. Its has some useful features (MP3 player, 1.3 mega pixel camera, Bluetooth) too.

Loads more of this stuff at Tech Digest and Shiny Shiny.

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