As new gadgets consistently make their way onto the market, there are a select few that always try something new to stand out in the crowded world of tech.
It’s risky, and doesn’t always pay off. But when it does, it certainly makes waves and gets everyone’s attention.
It’s here that we celebrate the gadgets and the brands behind them that dared to go where no one has gone before. From laptops and hairdryers, to out of this world earphones, here’s your chance to tell us which among these cool tech gadgets truly deserves to be called the Innovation of the Year.
Lenovo Yoga Book
Neither a tablet, nor a laptop, the Lenovo Yoga Book is something that’s never been seen before in the tech world. The keyboard is simulated on a flat panel, able to read from its stylus or touch input. The device is clever enough to read ballpoint pen writing on regular paper atop its keyboard space. It’s light, thin and foldable in both directions on its bracelet-like hinge, and comes powered in Windows or Android flavour depending on your preference.
The HP Spectre is the true definition of a modern laptop - solid, stylish and no gimmicks within its 10.4mm thick frame, coincidently the world’s thinnest laptop at its release. What makes it especially innovative is how it managed to fit a Core i processor into such a thin body. HP uses a heat pipe which distributes heat away from the processor, in addition to two fans that push heat out from the back. There’s probably no ther device that manages to squeeze something so powerful into such a thin body.
The Dyson name has become synonymous with reinventing our everyday appliances, and its first ever hairdryer follows that same precedent. The Dyson Supersonic combines the ‘air multiplier’ tech from its bladeless fans, along with the styling and motors from its vacuum cleaners for airflow focused enough to style your hair just the way you like. There’s even a ‘glass bead thermistor’ (basically a thermometer) to make sure the air doesn’t get too hot, and in turn reduces hair damage.
Audeze iSine 10
The world’s first in-ear planar magnetic headphones looks like it was beamed down from space by aliens. How does this differ from regular headphones? By spreading out planar magnetics over a large surface, this translates to low-distortion, clear, accurate sound that comes across as very lifelike. Out of the box, the iSine 10 has a typical 3.5mm jack, and a cable for Apple’s Lightning port, with alternatives for Oculus Rift or HTC Vive also available.
Apple MacBook Pro with Touch Bar
The new MacBook Pro’s Touch Bar certainly has its fair share of praise and criticism, but there’s no denying it brings something new to keyboards. While it takes some getting used to, the Touch Bar is extremely customisable, and the addition of Touch ID makes memorising passwords a thing of the past. While the Touch Bar still hasn’t realised its true potential, the introduction of more third-party support pouring in means it’s expected to be an indispensible part of MacBooks for years to come.