Gear We Like
Travel tech news: August 29, 2012
Nikon releases a new compact camera running Android, donkeys turn into wifi hotspots in Israel, power sockets in airports get a whole lot easier to find, and a cool little device lets you share USB storage with your non-USB devices.
That’s all in this edition of Travel Tech News for August 29, 2012.
Android meets camera in Nikon’s new S800c
In what could be an interesting preview of future camera development, Nikon have just released a new compact point-and-shoot that runs a full version of the Android operating system.
The S800c (check prices) runs Android 2.3, which means that any of the apps that run on that operating system (from Instagram to Photoshop Express, Angry Birds to Twitter) will work on the camera.
With wi-fi connectivity and GPS, it’s just like taking a photo on your phone, except with a half-decent sensor and proper optical zoom. Take the picture, enhance it a bit and share it on social media to impress (or infuriate) your friends.
We actually really like this approach, and wouldn’t be at all surprised to see it catch on with other manufacturers. A bit of competition would help bring the price down as well – always a bonus.
Need to get online in Israel? Find a donkey.
Ok, so we’re struggling to believe this one ourselves, but apparently if you’re wondering what life in ancient Galilee was like but need to Instagram your progress at the same time, the small Israeli town of Hoshaya has just the answer.
At the Kfar Kedem recreational attraction, five of the town’s 30 rideable donkeys have been fitted with a wi-fi router that they wear around their necks. Apparently if the move proves popular (with patrons rather than donkeys, presumably), more of the animals will become walking hotspots.
And cue ass jokes…
Need a power socket in an airport? There’s a wiki for that.
How many times have you found yourself at an airport with several hours to kill, a phone or laptop battery that’s about to die, and not a power socket in sight?
Yeah, us too.
Well, if you can keep your device going just a little longer, fire up the Airpower Wiki and with a bit of luck, that solitary socket behind the vending machine or under an advertising sign will be a mystery no longer.
It’s one of those things that is useless until you really need it – and then it’s completely invaluable. We’ve got it bookmarked.
Share USB storage with your phone, tablet and the cloud.
One of the things that has long annoyed us with phones and (most) tablets is the inability to move files backwards and forwards via USB. Backing up and sharing photos and videos from your iPhone, for instance, is quite a challenge.
Enter CloudFTP, an ingenious little device that for around $100 (check price) lets you attach USB storage like a hard drive or memory stick to it, and either connect to an existing wireless network or create a new ad-hoc one.
If you choose the former, you can upload directly to cloud services like Dropbox. If you create your own network, your phone or tablet can now see everything on the USB device and copy files backwards and forwards as required. Even better, up to three devices can connect at once.
Throw in an SD to USB convertor for a few bucks, and now you can also back up the photos from your camera without needing a laptop.
Yeah, we like this a lot.