28 November 2021

Whilst the classic Kiwi summer is all about the outdoors, including time at the beach and around the BBQ – many of us will also be hoping for a cool new gadget or two this summer. 


When it comes to technology purchases for Christmas presents, or just to make your worktime or free-time better, fortunately there’s plenty of choices despite current supply chain challenges. In this article I will also dive into some home office (or office office) – pick-me-up purchases along with some very special sustainability tech.


Whether buying a treat for yourself, a friend or family member – you’ll have to decide whether to stick with what you know – or if it’s time to try something new. First up, let’s look at drones.


If you’ve yet to try a real drone – then it’s hard to look anywhere else than at DJI. Their drones lead the market globally and even the sub $700 DJI Mini SE is a lot of fun, runs for close to 30-mins on a single battery charge and captures superb Full HD and 2.7K footage. For a little more you’ll find a range of other choices from DJI and all are capable of capturing 4K video. By the way, a ‘dronie’ is a photo or video taken of yourself (like a selfie) but taken from a drone.

Drone combo Heathcote Appliances.


Supplies have been super limited when it comes to new consoles such as the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S, fortunately though there are still other delights for the gamer in your life. It might be a small accessory, possibly a gaming mouse – or something bigger like a high refresh rate monitor or a gaming laptop. My son has been pestering me to buy a new gaming monitor – so that’s what I’m currently on the lookout for.

Samsung curved monitor Noel Leeming.


I’ve spent time reviewing the new iPhone 13 recently and I love the cinema mode. If you prefer buying a phone with Android be sure to check out the options from the big players such as Samsung S21 Ultra, Oppo and Xiaomi as their latest smartphones have really impressive features. I’ve appreciated the high level of competition this year with stunning cameras and zoom features being the norm, alongside long battery life, 5G and large high refresh screens. Some fans argue these features make their favourite Android phone a better option than what Apple has to offer this year.


If it’s focus and relaxation you want, then put away your smartphone and laptop – it might be time to look out for a Kindle. Amazon has recently refreshed the Kindle and I’m looking forward to getting my hands on it any day now. The newest 2021 edition comes in two flavours – the Kindle Paperwhite and the Kindle Paperwhite Signature Edition. Both offer weeks of battery life and modern USB-C charging, however the Signature Edition also brings wireless charging, auto-adjusting light sensors and a solid chunk of ebook and audiobook storage. 


I can’t count the hours I’ve spent working from home this year. One thing it has made me think about more than ever is creating a great working environment – a good desk, a great keyboard and mouse – and of course an excellent monitor, webcam and lighting. Whilst I’m hopeful of less time working from home in 2022, I definitely want to continue improving my workspace (or play space as it can become outside of work hours).


Logitech recently sent me the MX Keys Mini – and it’s quickly become my favourite little keyboard. Being able to link via Bluetooth with 3 different devices it’s ideal to use with your smartphone, tablet, Mac or Windows laptop. MX Keys Mini has a great feel to type on with it’s recessed chicklet keys but also looks stylish and is small enough to squeeze into just about any bag so is perfect if you want to use a computer somewhere different this summer (and at home or work).

Logitech keyboard Noel Leeming.


The new GoPro Hero 10 as usual gets a few improvements this year and will be ideal for capturing whatever you get up to over Summer. One thing many don’t know, is that GoPro’s talent a delivering superb video quality can now be applied to your video meetings thanks to a webcam capability being available as a free download for Mac and Windows.

Go Pro Noel Leeming.