The best summer tech, including a portable pizza oven, intelligent solar charger and the world’s smallest remote-controlled drone.
RC Insane BuzzBee
The world’s smallest remote-controlled drone, at 30x30x20mm this honestly isn't much bigger than a real bumble bee. It's so small that you can stow it away for safekeeping inside its own remote control. So while you can forget any ambitions to hang your GoPro off it for aerial photography, this ‘nano drone’ makes for great indoor fun. It flies for just 5-8 minutes and can do 360-degree flips, spins and dives. It has a six-axis flight control system, and you can set the flying sensitivity and gyros at three different levels, so even a novice pilot can master it quickly.
Technology Will Save Us Mover Kit
Tech Will Save us has a great range of build-it-yourself technology designed for schoolchildren of all ages (big kids can enjoy them too). This new kit, successfully Kickstarted earlier in the year, lets you build and program your own wearable. It features an accelerometer and magnetometer, but rather than limiting these to grown-up uses like counting your steps, you can program it to do all sorts of ‘if this then that’ actions – perfect for creating your own games. For example, program it to light up in rainbow colours when you complete an obstacle course or flash when you brush your teeth for two minutes.
This golf sensor is smaller and smarter than its predecessor. You attach it to your glove and take a few swings, then it analyses thousands of pieces of data from its two accelerometers and two gyroscopes. It gives you – or your coach – a diagnosis of what you're doing well and where you have room for improvement. You can track all sorts of stats and even review your swing in 3D and capture video, so you can see the issues for yourself. A free Smart Coach app from Zepp Labs completes the package, with personalised training programmes and fitness plans
All sorts of 360-degree camera designs are emerging, but none look as mad as Panono, with 36 cameras dotted around its spherical case, and none offer such high resolution. The grapefruit-sized still camera takes 36 photos simultaneously. These are automatically stitched together to make a colossal 108 megapixel still image, sent via Wi-Fi to a companion app for review. They're then saved to the cloud, password protected for privacy but easily shared to web or social media. Features include high dynamic range for low light and remote locking for if it's lost or stolen. The 16GB storage is enough for around 600 Panono panoramas.
Simply the gadgetiest portable pizza oven money can buy. And it's fast: at 500 degrees C you can fire a 12-inch pizza in less than 90 seconds. It's also good for cooking breads and roasting meat, fish and veggies. It takes 15 minutes to come up to temperature – the built-in thermometer lets you keep track of this – but then you can run a pizza production line. It's also unusually versatile: you can cook on stone using either wood or a gas burner (both are supplied). The design is made extra portable thanks to folding legs and removable burners – pizza picnic anyone?
Powertraveller Solarmonkey Adventurer
Charge your gizmos anywhere with this portable solar charger. It's rugged and the size of a paperback but unfolds to reveal the solar cells. A carabiner clips it to your rucksack or tent so it can charge all day long. The tech inside is clever too: Maximum Power Point Tracker adjusts the voltage coming from the solar cells to best charge the battery, so less energy is wasted and it meaningfully charges even in low light. When full, its 3500mAh battery is enough to charge even a large smartphone like the iPhone 6s twice over.