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DJI FPV drone (Cool gadgets)

85 cool gadgets: Our pick of the best new tech for 2021

Welcome to our regularly updated curation of the coolest, smartest kit money can buy.

We all love the arrival of a new gadget, something that will make life more convenient and entertaining for yourself, or help you out with a clever gift idea for a family or friend. That’s why we’ve put together some of the most interesting and innovative bits of tech out there right now in our list of the coolest, new gadgets we think you’ll love.

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If you want to boost your listening experience with the latest speakers and headphones, ramp up your fitness with the newest watches and hi-tech trainers, max out your home entertainment experience or just explore what else is out there, we’ve got you covered.

Make sure to check back regularly for all the latest gadgets.

Find out how to get the best Black Friday gadget deals for 2021. 

Nothing Ear

Nothing Ear on black background

These new wireless earbuds are the most hyped new product in tech right now. Backed by the likes of Tony Fadell, who invented the iPod, and Casey Neistat, one of YouTube’s most revered vloggers, there’s a huge amount of buzz surrounding this product that aims to bring premium audio performance at a wallet-friendly price bracket. It’s something that the company’s CEO Carl Pei had a track record for at his previous mobile phone company, OnePlus, which specialised in unfussy smartphones with powerful chipsets.

We can’t vouch for the sound yet, but we love the design and retro-futurism aesthetic. For the price, there’s an impressive set of features, including variable levels of noise cancellation, water- and splash-resistance and customisable gesture controls on the earbuds themselves.

£99

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 on white background

This is the first foldable phone that might be worth a go. The first few iterations of foldables were marred with reliability issues and huge price tags. However at £949, this phone is likely to cost as much on contract as the latest Apple or Google devices. There’s no sacrificing on processing power or features to make the phone work at this price either: the Flip3 comes with an octa-core processor inside, plenty of RAM and a 120Hz display. Plus it’s waterproof.

Folding the phone will split the display in two, so you can, for example, sit the phone on the table to watch videos. There’s also a small screen on the back so that you can see notifications when your phone is shut. We’d give it a few months to see if anyone reports any hardware issues with the screen, but we personally can’t wait to see what they do with foldable tablets next…

£949

DAB Motors Concept-E

DAB Motors Concept-E on white background

As city centres start to kick out fossil-fuel burning vehicles to reduce air pollution, electric bikes increasingly look like the best commuter option for those of us who don’t want to slip into some Lycra. Plus, would you look at this bike! The DAB Concept-E is the electric equivalent of a 125cc motorbike, which you can ride after a few hours of training and a thorough read of the Highway Code. The bike is reported to have a range of about 112km (70 miles) and it tops out at 104km/h (65mph). Sadly, it’s just a concept right now, with no price, but this is one of a new wave of very cool looking e-bikes on the way.

£TBC, dabmotors.com

Sony HT-A9

Sony HT-A9 on white background

Sony’s new speaker system is designed for those that want to get serious home cinema surround sound, without having to spend time and effort draping wires around your living room. The HT-A9 system is essentially a set of four wireless speakers that talk to a control box plugged directly into your TV. You just place the four speakers around you, and let the setup – which echolocates each speaker – calibrate to you and your living room. Each device has a tweeter, a sub and an upfiring speaker to power the full Dolby Atmos experience. Pair these with a Sony TV and the system will also use your TV’s speakers to add to the sound.

£1,600, sony.co.uk

Zephyr PRO RGB sweat-proof gaming mouse

Zephyr PRO RGB sweat-proof gaming mouse

If you’ve ever played an online game, whether that’s Fortnite, Call Of Duty or Apex Legends, then you’ll have experienced the sweaty palms that come with going toe-to-toe with a cocky 12-year-old shouting abuse at you over the voice comms. Short of keeping a chalk dish and a chamois cloth beside your console, there’s not a lot you could do about it… until now. This gaming mouse houses a tiny fan that blows cool air onto your palms through its honeycomb outer shell while you play. The rest of the mouse hardware uses the latest, most accurate sensors to keep your inputs sharp as well as dry.

$59 (£43 approx), marsback.com

SRS-NB10 Wireless Neckband Speaker

SRS-NB10 Wireless Neckband Speaker on white background

What if putting on music didn’t have to mean shutting yourself off from the world? Sony’s new Neckband speaker gives your ears a rest and sits on your shoulders, firing your audio towards your ears in a focused beam. There’s a built-in microphone and Bluetooth connectivity, which means you can take calls or listen to music up to 30m away from your computer – no more excusing yourself from a meeting to make a cup of tea. 

You also needn’t worry about disturbing your partner or housemates, as Sony claims the upward angle of the full-range speaker optimises sound for your ears only, though we’d have to test that one for ourselves to believe it! Weighing only 113g, the neckband is light and comfortable. Take your pick from charcoal grey or pristine white. Can we see it in rose gold?

£135

FLEXOUND Pulse™

FLEXOUND Pulse™

The new FLEXOUND Pulse chair brings a whole new sense to your cinema experience: touch. The latest horror movie could literally shake you to your core, while the orchestral opening of the next Marvel film will make the hairs stand up on your neck. Instead of a loudspeaker blaring a film’s audio at you, the Pulse uses speakers built into the chair to deliver sound that you can feel. The system offers all the intense sound you’d expect in a cinema, except now you can also feel frequencies of up to 1,000Hz on your skin.

Currently, the chair concept is only available for cinemas, but it’s ready to be licensed to a furniture manufacturer willing to put their body where the sound is. FLEXOUND even mentions a future with car brands, creating personal ‘sound zones’ for every passenger or making quiet electric vehicles sound like they have eight-cylinder engines.

£TBC, flexound.com

NightWatch Magnifying Clock Dock for Apple Watch

NightWatch Magnifying Clock Dock for Apple Watch

Not all tech needs to come with wires and buttons. This NightWatch orb magnifies an Apple Watch’s display to effectively turn it into an alarm clock for your bedside table. There’s a slot in the back that holds the watch’s MagSafe charger, and tapping the surface of the orb will wake up the watch screen so you can see the time. Plus, the shape of the NightWatch amplifies sound to transform your watch into an effective alarm clock.

£94

Symfonisk Picture Frame Wi-Fi Speaker

Symfonisk Picture Frame Wi-Fi Speaker on white background

We’re rather besotted with these unconventional Wi-Fi speakers borne out of a collaboration between Sonos and Ikea. The flat panel speaker is about as thick as a flatscreen TV and can be mounted flush against a wall or stood up on a shelf using the kickstand. Ikea offers interchangeable front panels so you can shake things up when you tire of its looks.

There are controls on the side but the speakers also work with Sonos’s S2 app, which means you can send music seamlessly to different parts of your home, and access the full range of streaming services that plug into it.

£179, ikea.com

LG Signature OLED R

LG Signature OLED R

When you turn this TV off, the display just rolls itself up, and tucks into the small speaker cabinet below. Alternatively in ‘Line View’ mode, it shrinks down to about a fifth of its height to work as a display for the integrated sound bar. It’s an achingly cool party trick that’s made possible by OLED technology. This kind of display doesn’t require backlights – the OLED crystals generate their own light when a current is passed through them. This means they can, if manufactured in a certain way, be built into flexible screens.

We’ve seen demos of this bendable screen technology for a couple of years now, but manufacturing is still fairly expensive and hard to perfect, which goes some way to explaining why you’ll have to cough up a house deposit to own one of these TVs…

£99,999, lg.com

Gigabyte Aorus 17G

Gigabyte Aorus 17G on white background

Most gaming laptops wouldn’t look out of place in a steampunk rave with all the extra wings, gubbins and lights that get bolted on to the design, which is why this understated powerhouse from Gigabyte appeals to us. It’s a punchy computer in a relatively slim, sleek case. The Aorus is powered by the latest Nvidia SUPER graphics card, which is developed to handle ray tracing, the complex lighting graphics used in the latest games. The display can run at a blistering 300Hz, which means games will look incredibly smooth on-screen.

If you’re one of the gaming pros this laptop was designed for, that rapid refresh rate means that there’s no discernible delay between your input and what happens on screen. And of course, the laptop comes with a true mechanical keyboard to provide satisfying clicks with each key press. If you need help justifying the outlay, we’re told all this machinery means it’s pretty adept if you need to do a bit of video or audio editing.

£1,899

Meeting Owl Pro

Meeting Owl Pro

As the world continues to work remotely and online meetings become a part of everyday life, the tech has stepped up to make the process more efficient and immersive, with the meeting owl pro being a great example of that. 

Fitted with a 360 degree camera, 8 microphones, and a speaker, it aims to replicate an in-person meeting while separated from colleagues. With an 18-foot audio pickup radius and an automatic zoom that responds to who is speaking at the time, it’s a sophisticated bit of kit that integrates with Zoom, Slack, Google Hangouts and more.

£999

A500 Mini

Amiga A500 Mini on white background

Set for release in early 2022, the Amiga A500 Mini will emulate the Amiga 500, 600 & 120, featuring 25 classics including Alien Breed 3D, Kick Off 2 and Pinball Dreams, with the option to add your own games.

Perfect for throwback fans and retro gamers, it comes with the original-style 2-button mouse as well as a newly engineered 8-button precision gamepad, for ultimate control over your play.

£119.99

Furbo Dog Camera

Furbo Dog Camera on white background

If you want to keep in contact with your collie while out of the house, this full 1080p HD camera will give you a line of sight with your pup, day or night. With a 160º wide-angle lens, 4x zoom and infrared night vision mode, you’ll be able to keep an eye on your pedigree no matter what. 

There are a number of handy features including a barking alert which will send a push notification to your phone if your dog is upset, and a two way chat system that will let you speak to your pet if you need to comfort or calm them down. You can even store over 100 treats in the device and remotely toss them to your pet to keep them entertained with a tasty game of catch.

£188.99

Fujifilm Instax mini Mobile Photo Printer

Fujifilm Instax Mobile Photo Printer

Print photos and video stills directly from your smartphone with this handy instant printer from Fujifilm. Connecting wirelessly to your device (available in iOS and Android) it takes around 12 seconds to print each photo, with a full charge allowing you to print off 100 continuous shots. 

There are a handful of extra features including Party Mode which can combine images from several phones to create mystery prints, with the options to create a collage, or insert an image into one of 27 styles of frame.

£109

Rocketbook Smart Reusable Notebook

Rocketbook Core Smart Reusable Notebook on white background

For the eco-conscious note-taker, this smart notebook has 32 pages that are easy to wipe clean with a damp cloth when paired with Pilot Frixion pens. The first reusable notepad of its kind, they claim it feels just like writing on a traditional pad thanks to its special space-aged paper.

Available in a variety of sizes, it’s also compatible with the Rocketbook app. This allows you to scan your notes which will then be saved into a cloud of your choice, so you’ll never lose your work and can easily revisit any sketches, notes and lists in the long run. 

£34.99

Pure Flux One e-bike

Pure Flux One e-bike on white background

It’s not obvious that the Flux One from UK retailer Pure Electric is an electric bike – but it is, and it’s one that arrives at a particularly attractive price.

The bottle-like item mounted to the aluminium frame of the Flux One is actually a battery that powers a motor contained within the hub of the rear wheel. Claimed to provide pedal assistance for 25 miles / 40km, this bike isn’t one for big days out but should prove sufficient for most people’s commutes and short leisure rides.

Pure has chosen a belt-driven single-speed transmission that – unlike the chains used on most bikes – doesn’t require oiling and thus shouldn’t mess up your clothes. Mechanical disc brakes front and rear should provide consistent stopping whatever the weather. 

We think this discrete ebike will prove extremely popular.

£999,

JBL L52 Classic Speakers

JBL L52 Classic Speakers on white background

The latest (and smallest) in JBL’s line of bookshelf speakers, the L52 Classic is a smaller sibling of the L82. With a modern twist on a vintage design, it features a 5.25-inch (130mm) 2-way loudspeaker, made using modern acoustic components, and claims to deliver a legendary sound to excite any audiophile. A stylish unit, it has a walnut wood veneer cabinet, with a range of colours available for the Quadrex foam grilles.

£1,000, jblsynthesis.com

Samsung Odyssey Neo G9

Samsung Odyssey Neo G9 on white background

Take your gaming up a notch with the Samsung Odyssey Neo G9, a next-generation monitor that promises to deliver an unparalleled, immersive experience. With a curved, ultra-wide 49-inch display, and Quantum Matrix Technology that aims to make dark areas darker and bright areas brighter, you’ll be right on top of the action with cutting-edge picture quality to guide you through the game. 

The physical display has a glossy white exterior, and features a rear infinity core lighting system which means you can personalise your set-up with 52 colours and five lighting effect options.

£1,099

KODAK Luma 150 Pocket Projector

KODAK Luma 150 Pocket Projector on white background

Portable enough to fit in a briefcase if you need to produce a presentation for work, or your backpack if you’d like to watch a film or enlarge your gaming experience on the go, the KODAK Luma 150 portable projector promises to expand the screen to up to 150 inches while delivering bright, vivid images.

It has built-in, surround-sound speakers and a headphone jack for private viewing, with a battery run time of up to 2.5 hours, which is rechargeable via mini USB.

£199.99

Grado SR80x headphones

Grado SR80x headphones (Cool gadgets)

We love the build and design of Grado’s headphones. They sound warm, lively and full of bass, while looking both retro and minimal. They’ve recently updated their award-winning range and our pick of the lot is the SR80x.

They’re open-backed, which means the audio will bleed out a little, so you may not want to take these on the train. But it does make them lighter and more comfortable to use at home for long periods and it’ll make the audio sound roomier than a closed-back pair. The new headphones have upgraded drivers too, improving the bass and mid-range. Certainly one of the best sets we’ve worn under the £150 mark.

£129.95

Le Feu bioethanol fireplace

Leu Feu bioethanol fireplace (Cool gadgets)

Although it’s hard to deny the charm of a log burner, it looks like their days are numbered as the government looks set to ban the most polluting fuels used in them to curb emissions.

There is a greener alternative – a biofuel burner. These fireplaces from Danish company Le Feu burn bioethanol, an alcohol produced from biomass like plant waste or straw. This burns cleanly, while providing enough heat to warm a room of 20m2, the company claims.

You don’t need a chimney to install one, although Le Feu recommends cracking a door open to maintain airflow. Unlike your old log burner, you can move this eco-burner around and get it to face you or take it outside. We trust our readers are smart enough not to do that while the fire’s on!

From £1,599

Syng Cell Alpha speaker

Syng Cell Alpha Speaker (Cool gadgets)

It’s rare to find something totally new in home audio, so this spherical speaker has definitely caught our attention. Syng is founded by a former Apple designer, who says that this is the world’s first ‘triphonic’ speaker, which means it uses three speakers to build sound that fills your room in a more ‘accurate’ way.

This doesn’t sound totally barmy, but we’ll have to wait to hear one in the flesh before we give our verdict. If you’ve got the spare cash lying around, the company actually suggests you buy three of the speakers for the optimum setup.

$1,799 (£1,274 approx), syngspace.com

Biolite FirePit+

Biolite FirePit+ (Cool gadgets)

We love bonfires (and barbecues!) but it does get tiresome having to dance around the fire all evening to dodge the eye-watering smoke. The FirePit+ eliminates smoke by making your fire hotter. Battery-powered fans at the bottom of the fire basket stoke the flames from beneath, while the mesh sides let plenty of air in.

The improved airflow means the flame burns hotter and more efficiently, therefore producing less smoke. Plus, you can put some charcoal in and rest a grill on the top. The fans last between 7 and 30 hours depending on how high they’re turned up, and the battery can be recharged via USB.

£269.99

Wyze Night Light

Wyze Night Light (Cool gadgets)

These night lights have built-in motion sensors so that they light up when you walk past. They’ve got light sensors too, so they’ll sense when it’s dawn and shut down. They’re lightweight, battery-powered and magnetically snap to a frame that attaches to the wall with sticky tape, so they’re a doddle to install and ideal for anyone renting a home.

Plus, a series of lights can be cleverly linked up so that when you pass the first light, the rest of them illuminate the way.

$19.99 (£17.19 approx), wyze.com

Belkin magnetic phone mount with face-tracking

Belkin magnetic phone mount (Cool gadgets)

This motorised phone stand will pair with your iPhone 12’s face-tracking to follow you around a room while you strut your stuff on TikTok (no? Us neither), film a YouTube video or make a Zoom call.

It capitalises on the iPhone 12’s MagSafe tech, so you can just magnetically snap the phone into place and get going.

£44.99, buy now from Belkin

MyZone MZ-Switch heart rate monitor

MyZone MZ Switch heart rate monitor (Cool gadgets)

This fitness tracker is ready for anything, even if you’re not. The MZ-Switch measures your heart rate to understand how much effort you’re putting into your exercise.

What makes it unique is that this tracker can slot into different straps to read your heart rate from your wrist, arm or chest. It’s waterproof too, so there are few activities it won’t track. In my case, that means it’ll be able to tell me precisely how much of a slob I am.

£139.99, myzone.org

Naim Uniti Atom Headphone Edition

Naim Uniti Atom Headphone Edition (Cool gadgets)

If you want to put on a pair of headphones, dissolve into an armchair and forget the world for a couple of hours, this Naim streaming audio system might be the best way to do it. This new edition of the Uniti essentially squeezes all the hi-fi equipment you might need to produce high-fidelity audio into one small box (headphones not included).

Inside there’s a digital-to-analogue (DAC) converter and a headphone amplifier, as well as a whole bunch of tech designed to optimise your music library for playback on your cans. It’s a self-contained system with hi-res streaming services like Qobuz and Tidal installed, alongside the likes of Spotify and Apple Music. You can also connect it to your smartphone or laptop, with or without wires.

£2,399

Apple iMac 24-inch

Apple iMac 24 inch (Cool gadgets)

11.5mm, that’s how thin Apple’s new iMac is. This slender frame is made possible by Apple’s new M1 chip. Previously, Apple put Intel tech at its core and connected it to various components to build its Macs. Now the company has channelled its work on smartphone and iPad chipsets to build a complete “system on a chip”.

Like having a neatly tidied desk, building the computer’s processing units on one piece of architecture means the new iMacs are able work more efficiently and quickly than their predecessors.

There’s also 4K Retina display onboard, with a six-speaker sound system squeezed in behind it. Plus, the iMac now has Touch ID so you can unlock your computer, log in and pay for shopping with your fingerprint.

From £1,249

Fujifilm Instax Mini 40 camera

Fujifilm Instax Mini 40 camera (Cool gadgets)

Generally speaking, we tend to look forwards here at Science Focus, but this retro, instant camera from Fujifilm is too cute to ignore. There are two modes and two buttons: one for selfies and one for normal shooting. A button beneath the lens pops the lens out so it can get up close and personal for selfies.

There’s even a teeny tiny mirror embedded into the body so you can get a sense of what you’re framing in your shot. Then you just click the shutter button and wait 90 seconds for the AA-battery-powered printer to process your photo.

£89

Signia Active hearing aids

Signia Active hearing aids (Cool gadgets)

Let’s face it, we give our ears a tough time. Loud concerts (remember those?), cotton buds, illnesses and even our own DNA works against our hearing health. It’s thought that 6.7 million people in the UK could benefit from a hearing aid, but only two million are wearing one.

Signia hopes to change that. With Bluetooth connectivity, an accompanying mobile app, a rechargeable battery and a sleek earbud-style design, the Signia Active hearing aids bring assistive technology on-trend.

Designed for those with mild to moderate hearing loss, the aids pack in intelligent software that boosts voices over background noise and come with a virtual assistant to boot.

£999 for two, active.signia-hearing.co.uk

TrinoXO Tee

TrinoXO Tee (Cool gadgets)

An odour-fighting T-shirt made of recycled crab. Yes, you read that right. This unassuming T-shirt is made of chitosan, a material obtained from the exoskeletons of shellfish.

It’s one of the most abundant ingredients on the planet, so its creators, Allbirds, decided to use it to make some of its clothing line. According to Allbirds, this special blend also has odour-fighting properties (it presumably has a surface that’s hard for smelly bacteria to colonise), which hopefully means you have to wash it less, and it’ll last longer.

£45, allbirds.co.uk, buy now from allbirds.co.uk

DJI FPV drone

DJI FPV drone (Cool gadgets)

Fancy yourself as a drone pilot? DJI’s new drone beams the view from its camera straight to a headset back on terra firma. You see what the drone sees.

It’s a user-friendly version of what drone-racing pilots use in competitions. The drone itself can move at a max speed of 140km/h (87mph) and can reach 0-60mph in just two seconds. It has a max range of 10km (6 miles), but you’ll need a spotter who can keep an eye out for people or obstructions below while you fly.

The tech is pretty power hungry, so you’ll get a maximum of 25 minutes out of a flight, but it will be one helluva ride.

£1,249

Simba Hybrid Luxe Mattress

Simba Hybrid Luxe Mattress (Cool gadgets)

A good night’s sleep is one of the most important things you can do for your health and wellbeing.

Memory foam mattresses are fashionable, but their spongy embrace isn’t for everyone. Simba’s patented hybrid solution pairs springs with open-cell foam, a memory foam-like material with internal pockets that allow the mattress to disperse heat. This creates a mattress that’s firm, ensures two people sleeping in a bed won’t feel each other move around, and is cooler than memory foam.

The company’s latest upgrade, the Hybrid Luxe, adds a second set of springs to provide extra support and remove any chance of sore joints for side sleepers. Plus, Simba has added a breathable bamboo wool layer just beneath the top layer, to help regulate your temperature and fend off a sweaty night’s sleep.

From £1,099 (single mattress)

PS5 VR controller

PS5 VR controllers (Cool gadgets)

Details are thin on the ground about virtual reality on next-gen consoles, but Sony has revealed what its motion controllers (which will translate your hand movements into the virtual world) will look like.

Of particular interest is the finger-touch detection that senses where your digits are placed on the remote. This will enable you to pick up and manipulate objects in the virtual world in natural way.

£TBC, blog.playstation.com

Beosound Emerge smart speaker

Beosound Emerge smart speaker (Cool gadgets)

This might just be the best-looking smart speaker money can buy. Beneath the bookish disguise, the Beosound Emerge is equipped with Google Assistant so it can control any compatible connected home tech.

The audio is powered by a separate tweeter, mid-range driver and subwoofer so it will create room-filling, detailed sound, despite its size. And if you somehow have enough spare cash to buy two, you can pair it with a second speaker to create stereo sound.

£669, bang-olufsen.com, buy now from bang-olufsen.com

Dyson Purifier Hot+Cool Formaldehyde