In this week’s installment of Something on the Side, SEAN BACHER introduces the AR.Race 2 and AR.Rescue 2 games for the Parrot AR.Drone 2.0, the B&W Panarama 2 sound bar, Sony’s new XB920 headphones, the iSoldier mobile device stand, the new line of LA-Z-Boy recliners and the Verbatim Audio Bar for notebooks.
AR.Race 2 and AR.Rescue 2
Parrot has released two new games that can be played with the Parrot AR.Drone 2.0. AR.Race 2 lets you select a gaming zone like a house, garden or forest. Each element of the environment then becomes a part of the game and a potential obstacle. All that’s left is to chart a course and indicate the starting/finishing line and begin the race.
In AR.Rescue 2, a spaceship has crashed and the survivors need your help to collect every part of the broken spaceship. The game consists of four augmented reality worlds, which need to be navigated. Crunchers (miniature monsters) must be avoided or shot down as they are on the lookout for your drone and will rip it apart if they catch it.
Expect to pay: Both games are free.
Stockists: Visit the App Store and download the games directly to your iOS device.
B&W Panarama 2 soundbar
As televisions get thinner, so does the sound they produce. The Bowers & Wilkins (B&W) Panorama 2 promises to address this issue. The Panorama 2 boosts audio performance, without the need to fill a living room with speakers. Once it is connected straight to the television’s HDMI port and mounted on top of the television, 175 watts of surround sound engulfs the viewer from just one speaker.
Expect to pay: R19 500
Stockists: Visit www.bwloudspeakers .co.za to find a retailer closest to you.
Sony XB920 headphones
Sony’s new headphones are made with pressure-relieving urethane foam, making them comfortable to wear, even for long periods of time. They are also built to be portable as they feature a dual-folding design, allowing them to be stowed in a purse or bag. An in-line remote controls music playback without having to reach for a smartphone or MP3 player. The XB920s are available in red or black and offer an output of 3 000mW (milliwatts).
Expect to pay: R1 399
Stockists: Most reputable retail outlets across South Africa.
iSoldier mobile device support
Attach the suction cup to the back of a tablet, smartphone, digital camera or MP3 player and balance the device on a flat surface. Once done, sit back and watch video footage, view photos or listen to music all without the hassle of clutching the device for hours on end.
Expect to pay: R150
Stockists: Order online from www.mantality.co.za
La-Z-Boy recliners have been around for decades now, but their design certainly has changed. The new line offers great back support, padded armrests, a collapsible footrest and 18 different seating positions. There are even certain models that have built-in fridges and offer massages. They are suited to a range of people, including breast-feeding mothers, avid gamers, movie and sports fanatics and the elderly. The recliners are available in a range of colours from bright red to boring old beige.
Expect to pay: R4 500
Stockists: Visit www.rochester.co.za for a dealer closest to you.
Verbatim Audio Bar
It is all very well running a presentation from a notebook if there is no sound involved. Things become a bit tricky when you need sound, as a notebook’s speakers are not really designed for large boardrooms and so distort when cranked all the way up. You can hunt down some external speakers, or you can use the Verbatim Audio Bar. It’s small enough to carry around in your notebook bag, weighs a mere 100 grams and requires no external power, as it draws it from a USB port. The Audio Bar includes a clip for attachment to the notebook screen, but also has a retractable 65cm cable for optimal placement on a boardroom desk.
Expect to pay: R189
Stockists: Contact Drive Control Corporation on 011 201 8927 for a retailer near you.
* Follow Sean on Twitter on @SeanBacher