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Sean Bacher

Something on the Side: Use a smartphone to do your laundry

In this Something on the Side, SEAN BACHER highlights the Samsung WW9000 smart washing machine, Razer BlackWidow Ultimate Stealth gaming keyboard, the Western Digital My Passport Metal Edition, the Garmin Fenix 2 multisport watch and the Cogito Classic connected watch.

Samsung WW9000 smart washing machine

This Samsung washing machine does away with all the buttons and knobs found on older washing machines and features a user-friendly touch interface. Users can also operate the washing machine using gestures, swipes and even via their smartphone. The 5″ colour touchscreen gives access to the washing machine’s operating system, where it can be linked to a local Wi-Fi network. Users can also use the screen to set the washing machine up to communicate with other smart appliances. When using a smartphone, you can start and stop the washing machine remotely and can even monitor the status of the current load it is washing.

Expect to pay: R30 000

Stockists: Visit for ordering information.

Razer BlackWidow Ultimate Stealth gaming keyboard

The BlackWidow Ultimate Stealth gaming keyboard is designed especially for gamers. Its keys can be programmed to perform multiple functions in a game and different keyboard profiles can be created for each game. The keyboard has a rugged design, with keys that can be battered over and over. Razer claims each key can withstand 60-million keystrokes without showing any signs of fatigue as often seen on ordinary keyboards.

Expect to pay: R2 200

Stockists: The keyboard is not yet available in South Africa but can be ordered online at

Western Digital My Passport Metal Edition external hard drive

The Western Digital My Passport Metal Edition range of drives feature a radial-spin-design aluminum enclosure which provides attractive styling and extra protection against everyday knocks. In addition, the drive offers hardware encryption and password protection to prevent unauthorised use of the drive in the event of loss or theft. For additional content protection and remote sharing, the My Passport Metal Edition includes SmartWare Pro software with Dropbox integration, allowing users to back up content from their computer to the drive and from the drive to the cloud.

Expect to pay: R1 299 for the 1TB version and R2 000 for the 2TB drive.

Stockists: Selected electronic retail stores across South Africa.

Garmin Fenix 2

The Garmin Fenix 2 has been touted as one of the most advanced multisport watches currently on the market. As such, the watch is bursting at the sides with features and can provide vital statistics on a wide variety of sports. For example, the watch can track stroke counts when in swimming mode or can track elevation and speed when in Ski-Board mode. When in normal time mode, the Fenix 2 will show temperature, altitude and it even has a compass. According to Garmin, the Fenix’s battery will last up to 50 hours when in GPS mode and up to five weeks without GPS.

Expect to pay: R5 800

Stockists: Order online at

Cogito Classic connected watch

The Cogito Classic connected watch offers a normal looking analogue face for time telling with a range of imbedded icons that become visible when a certain notification arrives on a smartphone. Although the watch will not answer any calls, like the Samsung Galaxy Gear, it does display who is calling or who the latest text or e-mail is from. This means users don’t have to rummage through their briefcases or search their pockets to check if any new e-mails have come through – they can simply check the watch while checking the time. The Cogito Classic is compatible with most new Android and iOS smartphones and connects via Bluetooth 4.0.

Expect to pay: R2 500


* Sean Bacher is editor of Follow him on Twitter on @SeanBacher

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