12:00 AM, November 21, 2016 / LAST MODIFIED: 10:42 AM, November 21, 2016

The top travel tech for 2017

Travelling is all about leaving it all behind. But here are the coolest tech items the seasoned traveller might not want to leave behind.

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ENTERTAINMENT

Lightweight notebooks FOR TRAVEL

When you travel, you need the lightest notebook you can get. And yes, there are great options that are not named Air. Lenovo LaVie Z550 is lighter than a hip Air at 0.78kg. 13-inch, dual-core Broadwell processor. $1,300. Asus ZenBook 3 is 12.5 inches, gorilla glass, full-size keyboard and a fingerprint reader. i7 processor , 16GB DDR3, 128MB Intel HD Graphics 620. 512GB SSD. Weighs 0.91kg and lightens your wallet by $1,600. 

Amazon Kindle Paperwhite

If you love reading books, this is THE gadget. Soft lit front to avoid eye strain in the dark. Charge once a month. $120 

Roku Streaming Stick (3600R)

If you're stuck in a hotel for a long time, play your stored content by streaming to a smart TV. Upto 1080P video. Powered by a TV's USB port. $49

SURVIVAL

Lifestraw

You're travelling to some place with dubious drinking water supply. This straw is a microbiological purification unit capable of filtering 1,000 litres of water sucked up through the straw. Removes 99.9999 percent of waterborne bacteria and parasites. No chemicals, no batteries and no moving parts. Cons: It will NOT remove salt. Won't work on ocean water or in extreme cases, your own bodily water supply. In case of zombie attack in the desert, you can drink your pee through Lifestraw; it will be clean but salty. Ultra-light, weighs only 56 grams. $20

Overboard Pro-Vis Waterproof gadget bag

Waterproof, compact at 30 litres, high visibility colors. Cons: Only available in those two high visibility colors. Won't match your brown leather hiking boots. Starts from roughly $40. 

Royce Freedom Wallet 

It won't transform into a suit. But it will protect your data via an RFID shield that prevents hackers from accessing the info on your passport's RFID chip. It has a Bluetooth tag that syncs with your phone. Lose it and the phone notifies you. $99

STAY CONNECTED

HooToo TripMate Elite travel router 

Stuck in a hotel room with single device wi-fi connection? Use Ethernet, connect multiple gadgets. Two-port USB chargers for phones and tabs. 6,000mAh battery for outdoor charging. Hook up flash drive to share files with other devices. Retails for about $47.

Batterypack cases

Everybody drops their phones. The universe has set a law that the newer/pricier the phone, the easier it breaks. You need a protector while tackling mountains or shopping mall stairs. 

BuQu Tech PowerArmour Case protects your smartphone accidental falls. Provides one full recharge. Nifty LEDs show how much charge remains. Retails for about $80. 

Anker Ultra Slim Extended Battery Case, also for iPhone 6 retails for $46.99. Adds less than 1/4th inch thickness. Adds additional 120% charge. 

The other popular device Samsung Galaxy S7, has PowerBear come to the rescue. 4,500 mAh. 24 Month Warranty and included screen protector. Retails for about $30.

TAKE NOTES

Equil Smartpen 2 

Helps take notes on a tablet like the iPad and write on paper like a ballpen. It will sync with your device and saves your ink scribbles. Pricey pen at $170

Bamboo Solo from Wacom 

Carbon fibre tip, weighs only 10grams to write, tap, draw on any device. Available in four colors.  The Inkspace service easily lets you store, shape and share your ideas. Also much cheaper at under $20. 

SMART LUGGAGE

Trunkster 

Roller suitcase with the only zipperless, garage-door style opening. Built-in charger for your phone, GPS for tracking and it can weigh itself. $345 for the 22 inch carry on luggage. Is it worth buying? That depends on how deep your pocket is!

Raden

Built-in charger, GPS, measuring scale to avoid excess weight. Comes with app providing relevant info such as best routes, TSA wait times and weather updates. Scratch-proof and available in seven colors. The 22-inch carry-on case is $295; the 28-inch check-in case is $395. The two cases are sold together for $595. Trust me, traveling couldn’t have gone more techier!

Coming up: 

Delsey Pluggage is a prototype that includes interior lighting, a fingerprint ID lock and a speaker for playing tunes from your phone while you wait.  On the other hand, Samsonite, one of the oldest name in luggage is working on "self-propelled" luggage. Like a little puppy it will trail the owner six inches behind. And unlike a puppy, it will not hump. 

Most items here are not available for retail in Bangladesh. You can purchase online for which prices are shown in dollars. Or you can nag your favourite uncle to bring it for you. 

Connect with the Author:

Primary life roles: Confused dad, all round car guy, model car builder and cartoonist. Currently Editor of Shift (automobiles), Bytes (technology) and Next Step (career) for the Daily Star. Previously did four years hard labour in advertising before starting Shift and Next Step in 2013 while also re-branding the previous tech publication as Bytes.

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