Accessories

5 accessories to protect yourself and your gadgets from the elements

Don’t just get an umbrella, duh!

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I hate changes in weather. One minute it’s hot and sunny like a perfect summer day, next minute, it’s raining as if Zeus and Poseidon are having the war of their lives. Monsoons got worse thanks to climate change, especially in tropical countries. It’s now even more impossible to predict the weather so you need to stay ready for all kinds of elements.

So we scoured the internet to help you prepare. Here are the accessories you need to protect you and your gadgets, of course, without getting out of style.

Dress your phone with a pouch and a case

Ready to brave the storm? Make sure you put your phone on a waterproof pouch. I know, I know. The thought of using a waterproof pouch sounds cringey. But of course, you don’t have to sacrifice style with this one. Most waterproof pouches let you change their straps to something fancier.

In particular, Travelon’s Clear View Waterproof Pouch comes in five colors and you can still tailor the strap to your preference. For something clearer and more transparent, Anker has a pouch but it looks a little bit tacky.

For those who’d want a case instead, LifeProof offers one of the best waterproof cases in the market. Most cases look bulky and sturdy, but LifeProof made it more fashionable with its bright and popping colors.

Stay fashionable while you protect yourself from the elements

Of course, nothing beats a good old umbrella when it comes to protection against the rain but you can up your style by picking one that’s clear and transparent. Even better if it’s a bubble or a dome-shaped one.

Additionally, you can keep your gadgets and makeup safe with a waterproof bag. Fjällräven has an array of water-resistant and waterproof backpacks that don’t compromise style. Brands like Doughnut and Pacsafe have a set of stylish yet functional waterproof bags, too.

Lastly, cap off your style with a water-repellent raincoat or parka. This particular blush pink raincoat by Cole Haan should be a part of your ensemble, especially when it’s raining. Avoid using black, neutral, and earthy-tone since most people would prefer using a darker hue when it’s raining, and you won’t stand out if you wear the same colors.

For those who don’t feel like wearing a raincoat, Uniqlo has a Blocktech line of water-repellent parkas that you can use casually or for your outdoor needs. NikeLabs has a longer parka as well if you prefer using one!

If you want the world to see your OOTD, you can opt for a transparent raincoat so people can see what’s underneath.

Bonus: Get a water-resistant watch!

If it’s raining while on your way to an important meeting, chances are you’ll be keeping your gadgets inside your bag to prevent it from getting wet. This might keep you from tracking time. Thus, you need a watch that can handle these kinds of elements. Apple and Samsung both have smartwatches that are water-resistant yet stylish at the same time.

Now, who told you rain can’t be fun?

Accessories

Even Samsung calls them Beans, according to teardown

They also have an easily replaceable battery

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Marketing will always clash with engineering. Whereas the latter will use quirky names for a product, the former will always prefer a more marketing-friendly name. Take the Android 11 versus Android Red Velvet Cake debate, for example. Now, another weirdly named product is falling into the same marketing versus engineering clash: the Galaxy Buds Live. If you’ve seen the product, you already know what it should be called. Apparently, Samsung does, too. According to a tear-down video, even Samsung calls them Beans.

In iFixit’s latest teardown video, the infamous dissector of tech revealed the inner workings of the small Galaxy Buds Live. Composed of many minuscule components, each earbud contains a flexible strip that holds the entire thing together. Each cable has a perfectly readable label called “bean left” or “bean right.” Without a doubt, Samsung — at least, their engineering department — calls them beans as well.

In other news, iFixit also comments on the relative ease of taking the earbuds apart, making them much easier to fix. They even found it easy to replace the battery (provided you even have a spare battery in the first place). Overall, the YouTuber gave it a repairability score of 8.

Regardless of what you call the Galaxy Buds Live or Galaxy Beans, the new wireless earbuds are a marvel of product design. The bean-shaped design makes for a more comfortable fit than more elongated earbuds out there. It fits snugly rather than protrudes invasively. Right now, the Galaxy Buds Live are available for US$ 169.99.

SEE ALSO: Samsung Galaxy Note 20 series: Staying the course

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Accessories

Sony WH-1000XM4 price and availability in the Philippines

Right around how much we expected it to be

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Sony’s best just got better as the Sony WH-1000XM4 is now official and has come to the Philippines.

New to the headphones in its 4th iteration is Multiple device pairing. This has been one of this headphones’ weaknesses and it has finally been addressed. You can now connect the Sony WH-1000XM4 to two devices simultaneously.

When a call comes in, your headphones will know which device is ringing and connect to it automatically. You’ll also be able to quickly switch your headphones to either of the two devices in a single tap.

Sound of the WH-1000XM-line has always been stellar and the XM4 should be no different. The ever-reliable QN1 is still here for noise-cancellation but it’s now paired with a new Bluetooth Audio SoC. It can sense and adjust to music and noise at over 700 times per second.

It now also has Edge-AI, DSEE Extreme which more accurately rebuilds audio lost during digital compression for a full fidelity experience. The 360 Reality Audio feature is now also making its way to these headphones. It lets listeners enjoy a custom immersive musical field that is perfectly optimized for each individual user.

The WH-1000XM4 also supports Google’s helpful new Fast Pair feature that lets you easily locate where you left your WH-1000XM4 by ringing them.

Lastly, there’s Speak-to-chat. Previously, you had to cover one of the ear cups to disable the noise-cancelling for a short period. Now, you only have to speak and the headphones will recognize your voice, automatically stop your music and let in ambient sound so you can conduct a conversation without removing your headphones.

Pricing and availability 

The Sony WH-1000XM4 will retail for PhP 19,999 and is available in the Philippines starting August 14, 2020 in all Sony Centers and dealers nationwide.

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Accessories

Petpuls activity tracker monitors your dog’s wellbeing

Available now on Indiegogo with a special early-bird price

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It is without a doubt that dogs are one of the most beloved pets. Like all living beings, they too need affection and proper care. However, pet owners know it can be hard to take care of their furry friends sometimes. Thankfully, there’s a new product that simplifies monitoring of a dog’s well-being for owners.

Petpuls is a recently-launched activity tracker on Indiegogo. It monitors a dog’s physical and mental well-being. Yes, this activity tracker built-in to a collar monitors it all thanks to a proprietary AI technology. This AI technology tunes in to a dog’s bark and recognizes five emotional states: happy, sad, anxious, relaxed, or angry.

While this technology won’t let your dog speak to you like the way Dug does in the movie Up, Petpuls ensure an accuracy rate of more than 80% for this technology. After all, the algorithm behind Petpuls uses a database of more than 10,000 bark samples from 50 dog breeds of 4 different sizes.

Aside from tracking a dog’s emotional state, Petpuls also tracks physical activities. The collar houses a built-in accelerometer that calculates the number of calories burned. Those who are wondering just how active their dog is can now easily do it with Petpuls.

On the mobile app, owners can register their dogs to create a unique profile within the Petpuls community. Owners can set the name, breed, gender, weight, age, and more of their dogs within the app. There’s also a “pet favorites” feature to keep track of a dog’s favorite food, toys, as well as canine best friends.

Availability of Petpuls activity tracker

Petpuls is available on Indiegogo for an early-bird price of USD 79. For that price, owners are getting the activity tracker along with an eco-friendly interchangeable collar. Those who missed the Indiegogo campaign may avail it on Amazon for USD 99. It will ship to eager dog owners in late August 2020.

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