Attempting to describe the best gadgets of 2020 sitting here in August will be tough. Gadgets are always coming and going so what is cool and helpful today will be gone tomorrow. If it isn’t gone it will at least have undergone some transformation.
So, here at Nerdy Dads we’ve put together a short list of some of the gadgets that have been great for us this year. Enjoy!
Why Do We Like Gadgets?
“Because they are fun” is the short answer. It’s also accepted as the correct answer for us.
A gadget is a device that incorporates technology and that is uniquely designed to fulfill a defined function. Gadgets can also be used to improve another product or service. Basically, a gadget makes life more comfortable.
We like making life more comfortable. That is a bit longer explanation of why we like gadgets. Now let’s get into our list of the best gadgets of the year…so far!
The Best Gadgets of 2020
With the latest generation of wireless headphones, the AirPod Pro, Apple has yet again caused a sensation in the community. They also refuse to turn down that darn music!
Apple has introduced a revised in-ear design that provides improved comfort and grip. This allows the more fitness focused dads to exercise for hours without the pods falling out. For an added bonus they are also resistant to water and sweat. That sounds kinda like me 😉
You can still manage all the commands using Siri. A new feature is the ability to control the pods based on a pinch to the surface. Another new introduction is the improved noise cancellation system. This is great if you’re taking a work call at home or if you’re just taking a break from home.
For the music aficionados the sound quality is pretty much what we’ve come to expect from Apple. It’s awesome! Excellent treble with a consistent and defined bass. You can also equalize according to your preferences or the music you’re listening to.
All in all, Apple yet again impresses. The AirPods Pro are a great little gadget to have around for work, play, or just chilling.
You know what’s tough about gadgets? They require electricity and without a charge they aren’t much use.
You know what’s not tough about gadgets? Using the Anker PowerCore to keep them fully juiced.
The Anker brand line of power banks will keep your phone charged for all the heavy “work” we do on them. That involves a lot of Candy Crush for Mike. Small enough to fit in your pocket these devices pack a powerful punch and can recharge your devices multiple times.
Case in point is the the Anker PowerCore. The 13000mAh version will charge your iPhone 8 five times (5x!) or an iPhone X 3 times. You can see why this is a device that no responsible dad could ever go without.
Switching to another Bit Tech player we introduce the Google Home.
Let’s take a short trip down memory lane if the ol’ memory still works. Back in the day, movies would show people relaxing at home and speaking a command. An attentive robot (Rosie, anyone?) would make it happen in an instant.
We might not have a robot that cooks and cleans, but we can call out commands to the Google Home. The smart speaker is sophisticated enough to act as the brain of your home. Control the AC? No problem. Play music, set an alarm, check your calendar, and pick winning lottery numbers are all a voice call away. Well, maybe not that last one. Suffice it to say that Google Home can do pretty much anything you need it to. For a complete review the nice folks at CNET have created this Google Home review.
One great feature with the device is that it’s smart enough to (mostly) only respond to a specific voice. You can set it up to respond to you, but no one else. This may seem harsh until you realize that pizza, chips, and soda are appearing on your shopping list a lot more frequently than they should.
If you’re tight on space, such as a crowded desk, the Google Home Mini (shown below) is a great option. All the great features without needing as much space.
Amazon Fire TV Stick
It’s time to round out this list with something we all enjoy: TV.
You could be forgiven for not knowing all the different ways to watch a show these days. Is it on HBO, Disney+, Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime or something else?
Besides the plethora of decisions another more technical issue is that current televisions all have different operating systems. Some of these may be very, very old (like 3+ years!). If you have one of the older models, what can you do?
- Buy a new TV. Gotta love spending that hard earned money.
- Buy a device such as the Amazon Fire TV Stick. Gotta love spending less of your hard earned money.
If you couldn’t tell I’m a bit partial to #2. If your TV is super old then it might be time for an upgrade.
The Amazon Fire TV Stick is yet another voice controlled device. This time your digital friend is Alexa, who is happy to transform your TV into a full-on home automation entertainment center.
I should mention that you will need to have an Amazon Prime account for this to function properly. However, with a ton of preinstalled apps and a clean, user-friendly interface the price is worth it. Also, who doesn’t have Prime?
Well, that about rounds out my list of the best gadgets of 2020…so far. Like I said, gadgets come and go at such a fast pace I probably don’t know 90%+ of what comes out. That coming from a guy who works in tech. New and cool things are always emerging. The trick is separating the winners from the one hit wonders.