Gear We Like
5 great multi-purpose tech gadgets
If you’re anything like me when you travel, you want all of the gadgets but none of the bulk. By the time you’ve packed all of the cables, power packs and (of course) adapters into your bag, there’s often not enough room for the things that other people might consider essential.
Like, I don’t know, underwear.
One of the big buzzwords in tech in recent years is ‘convergence’ – the idea of combining the functions of multiple devices into one. Sometimes this works really well, other times it doesn’t, but there’s no doubt that saving space, weight and sometimes even money is a good thing for people on the road. As long as you don’t lose things too often, at least…
Here are five of our favourite multi-purpose tech gadgets to consider for your next trip.
This tiny 4-in-1 keychain package is surprisingly useful given its size. It has chargers for Apple products as well as Android,Blackberry and anything else that uses microUSB, a microSD reader that lets you read and store data, and even a tool to eject the SIM card from iPhones and Ipads.
It comes in black or white, and was selling for a touch under $30 on Amazon last time we checked.
There are literally dozens of Swiss Army knife-type tools out there, ranging widely in form, function and price. Our favourite is the Victorinox Secure, as it includes an encrypted USB thumb drive (in various sizes) and LED torch, as well as the usual array of blades and scissors.
With the data being encrypted, at least you won’t need to worry about your personal documents being at risk when you leave the knife in your carry-on and it gets confiscated at security screening…
You’re looking at less than $100 on Amazon for the 8Gb version.
If you’d like to be able to write with your multi-tool instead of store files on it – or are just look for a few more features in a unique style – we really like this pen-based multi-tool.
As the advertising goes, if you need to cut it, carve it, saw it, punch a hole in it, strip it, scrape it, screw it, file it or tweeze it, this device can do it. You could even write a letter with it, believe it or not.
Better still, it’s currently only ten bucks on Amazon. Worth trying out, right?
There’s no doubt, though, that with a few hours of direct sunlight (whether that’s walking around or just propped up beside your table in the beer garden) you can keep your phone and camera charged. After an overnight train ride or when you’re out exploring all day, it might be the only option you have to get things powered up again.
There are hundreds of variations, so just pick a size and style you like.
Reef flip-flops with hidden bottle opener
Last, but obviously the most important, are a range of flip-flops from Reef with a built-in bottle opener. I once owned a pair of shoes with the same feature – had I realised I could have got them in flip-flop form I would totally have bought them.
Just imagine: a long hard day at the beach working on your tan. An ice-cold bottle of beer in the cooler. And then you realise that you left your opener back at home.
Complete tragedy, right? Not with a pair of these on your feet, it isn’t..
And over to you. Is there a multi-purpose gadget that you can’t live without when you travel?
Images via Amazon