Tech the Halls

15 Dec 2016
POSTED BY Y Magazine

Wondering what to give family and friends for Christmas this year? Felicity Glover looks at some cool gadgets that she’d like to find under her tree.



Meet Cozmo

The Anki Cozmo has to be the coolest little robot we’ve seen in a long time – and also the smartest. He’s got personality, sophisticated artificial intelligence and even reminds you of Wall-E – just a lot sleeker. Cozmo can recognise its owner, express feelings, greet your pets and play games. The more you interact with him, the more he develops and gets to know you, which could be a little eerie for some. But still, he’s a pint-sized cute bot with huge potential – and we want him. At
www.anki.com from
RO69.

Quiet Comfort

Christmas Tech

Sit back, relax, pump up the volume and tune out from the world with these sleek Bose Quiet Comfort QC35 Wireless Headphones. Described as the best on the market today, they are a comfortable fit, have a long battery life and high-quality noise cancellation. With 20 hours of battery life per charge and up to 40 hours in wired mode, these are the perfect gift for music fans. At www.amazon.co.uk from RO135.

Pocket Printer

Christmas Tech

Ever since we saw British vlogger and YouTube queen Zoella plugging the HP Sprocket Portable Photo Printer a few weeks ago, we’ve been secretly hoping to find this in our Christmas stocking on December 25. The Sprocket is a fabulous little device that lets you print out copies of your best Instagram selfies and other smartphone photos. Just connect it to the free app via your iPhone or Android smartphone and you’ve got printing on the go. Best of all, it utilises zero ink photo paper. At www.amazon.co.uk from RO81.8.

Editor’s Pick

Gamers Unite

Christmas Tech

If there’s one complaint we’d have about the Xbox series, it would have to be the incompatibility of the Xbox 360 and Xbox One – especially if Santa has delivered both over the past two Christmases. But that’s not an issue anymore thanks to Microsoft’s Xbox One’S gaming console. Slimmer and better-looking than the Xbox One, its hardware has undergone a serious upgrade while you can also play 4K Blu-ray movies and stream 4K video on Amazon Instant Video. Game play is richer and more colourful and best of all, you can still play your Xbox 360 games with the advanced features of Xbox One. From www.amazon.co.uk from RO120.

App of the Week

PRISMA

Christmas Tech

Have you discovered Prisma yet? It’s one of the most popular photo-editing apps on the market today, allowing you to turn your smartphone pictures into realistic paintings using a combination of “neural networks” and artificial intelligence. For both photos and videos, you literally turn them into works of art using the styles of artists such as Van Gogh and Picasso. A great way to turn your memorable moments into timeless works of art. Free at iTunes and Google Play.

Game Review: Google Santa Tracker

– By Alvin Thomas

Christmas Tech

Ho, ho, ho folks! As you all know, we’re on the verge of Christmas. And for many, it is a time for going back to their roots: setting up a Christmas tree, sharing gifts and spending time with family. Most children, however, take this time (a month or so before Christmas) to be good – and earn gifts.

The rule is simple: the better behaved you are, the more gifts you get. Little kids also take this time to compose wish lists for Santa Claus – the beloved superhero who delivers gifts to millions of kids around the world. The deal is easy too: you leave a glass of milk and a mince pie in your house, and he’ll be there.

But have you ever tried sneaking up on him? If not, here’s a game by Google that will give you the perfect opportunity to do so. Google’s Santa Tracker is an annual Christmas-themed “entertainment” program that allows users to track Santa during Christmas Eve. However, before that, the app, which is available via a simple search on Google for the same, allows users to play games and take part in simple activities.

As the game is actually a part of Google, you would have to use a web browser to play the game. There are no particular restrictions for the same, so you could use Google Chrome or even Mozilla Firefox to play the game.

Opening the game, there are a few games to choose from. Currently, “Santa Search” is first on the list. As the title suggests, you search for Santa Claus in various locations and among large crowds but it is fairly easy to play.

Other games include the “Code Boogie”, which allows users to code (simply drag and drop elements) elves to dance. There’s also a mini-Wikipedia-esque page called “Holiday Traditions”, which gives players an idea as to how Christmas is celebrated in various parts of the world. There are a few other games to choose from too.

The graphics are extremely slick and gameplay should be smooth if you’re running a system with more than two gigs of RAM (Random Access Memory). However, if you’re desperate to play the game on the go, you can download the Google Santa Tracker app on the Google Play Store.

Just remember: don’t startle Santa when he’s busy leaving gifts for you.

Info Box

  • Genre:

Interactive Learning

  • Platform (s):

PC (Online only) and Android

  • Developer:

Google

  • Rating:

Everyone


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