This was a big week if you own an Apple Watch and subscribe to either Spotify or Tidal. Why? Because you can finally download music and podcasts to your Apple Watch for offline listening. In other tech news, Apple changed its mind and now says that its HomePod and HomePod mini will be able to play lossless audio. There’s a new USB standard that’s going to charge your gadgets hella-fast. And Lebron seems to have worn Beats’s new wireless earbuds that haven’t been announced yet.
There were a lot of new gadgets announced this past week, too. We’ve rounded them up below.
Anker Nano II Wall Adapters
Released in 2018, Anker’s Nano wall adapters were the first to feature GaN (gallium nitride), a material that is significantly more energy-efficient and space-efficient than silicon, which allowed the wall adapters to be smaller, lighter and still really powerful. Three years later, Anker has released a line of Nano II wall adapters featuring GaN II, a next-generation material that helps the wall adapters be even more energy efficient and better regulate its temperature. Basically, Anker’s new wall adapters are still tiny, but even more powerful. The Anker Nano II lineup consists of three wall adapters: a 30-watt model ($30), a 45-watt model ($36) and a 65-watt model ($40). All three wall adapters have a single USB-C port and come with PowerIQ 3.0 technology, which helps manage/control the wattage.
All three new wall adapters are available for preorder and are scheduled to ship in June.
Price: $30 — $40
JLab JBuds Frames
The JLab JBuds Frames are neat because they are essentially clip-speakers; they allow you to turn any pair of eyeglasses or sunglasses that you already own into a pair of audio glasses akin to Bose Frames. The kicker is that the JBuds Frames cost just $49, which is a much cheaper proposition than the Bose Frames, which can cost 3x to 4x that amount.
The Sony SRS-XB13 is the company’s smallest portable Bluetooth speaker — it’s effectively half the size of a soda can. It’s the next-generation version of the SRS-XB12, which looked identical, but the SRS-XB13 now charges via USB-C and delivers true 360-degree sound. Other than that, the SRS-XB13 is still a good portable speaker for people looking for a small and affordable option. If you’re looking for more room-filling sound, we recommend spending a little more on Sony’s SRS-XB23, which you can pick up for just below $100.
Wyze Night Light
The Wyze Night Light is the company’s newest affordable smart light — you can get a 3-pack for $20. The Wyze Night Light is unique for a few reasons. First, each light is battery-powered that you recharge via USB-C; Wyze claims the each light can last 128 days by itself or 85 days when it’s linked with other Wyze Night Lights. Second, each light can be placed wherever you want thanks to an included mounting system — no need to worry about wires or the location of an outlet. And third, each Wyze Night Light has a built-in light and motion sensors, so they’ll automatically turn on when it’s dark and/or motion is detected.
Price: $20 (3-pack)
Sonos One SL (Updated)
Sonos didn’t give us an entirely new speaker this week, but it did update the One SL, which is a One without built-in microphones . That said, you won’t notice the update. The refreshed One SL looks exactly the same and has the same functionality as before. Sonos gave the speaker a new wireless radio to make it more power efficient. It also removed some excess plastic from the speaker’s base to make the product more recyclable. The price of the new One SL remains the same.
Native Union Rise Dock
The Rise Dock isn’t a MagSafe charging stand on its own. It’s a stand that requires you to own Apple’s MagSafe Charger, which Apple sells for $39, to work. That said, the weighed stand is able to house Apple’s wireless charger in such a way that it elevates your iPhone 12, which is pretty cool. Plus, its dark finish will match perfectly with anybody who has any of Apple’s space gray accessories.
Kanto YU Passive Bookshelf Speakers
Kanto launched two new sets of passive bookshelf speakers, both of which cost less than $200. There’s the YU Passive 5.25″ ($199/pair), which features a 5.25-inch Kevlar woofer and 1-inch silk dome tweeter, and the YU Passive 4″ ($159/pair), a 4-inch woofer and 1-inch silk-dome tweeter. The two sets of speakers look basically identical, other than the YU Passive 5.25″ being slightly larger, and being passive bookshelf speakers, they’re also very flexible. You can use them as desktop speakers if you a DAC/amplifier, or you can use them as TV or stereo speakers with a receiver. Available now.
Price: $159 (4″); $199 (5.25″)
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