Updated 26 May, 2013, 12:15 pm IST
Gadgets for the great outdoors
| by Naina Khedekar
Whether you often go city trotting or love camping on the riverside, technology comes to the rescue especially during dire emergencies. So, while one may not need to take utmost care of devices when indoors, the scenario may not necessarily be the same when outdoors. Saving a device from seeping water, accidental knocks and bumps or even powering it would be a task. We’ve listed out some handy devices for the next time you decide to set out on a mini-trip.
Many users do not prefer to stay away from their phones, even when on a vacation. Arguably, some users wouldn’t want to tag along a mobile phone when away on a vacation to enjoy the serenity without any disturbances. However, a mobile phone can come quite handy, in case of emergencies. The Motorola Defy+ is an aptly designed outdoor phone with waterproof and dustproof capabilities and can take the usual knocks and bumps. It is powered by a 1GHz processor and runs on Android 2.3. While outdoors, you can take quick snapshots with its 5 megapixel camera and view it on the large 3.7-inch capacitive touchscreen. It recently got a price cut and is available for Rs.15,990 at Flipkart, click here for the complete review.
Rugged yet stylish
The Sony Ericsson Xperia Active, literally is quite like its name, plus it will successfully put away the notion that rugged phones are ugly. This one has a cute appearance, along with a rough and tough side. While it is dust resistant, one can call it a delight for water sports lovers, too, as it is resistant to water immersion, between 15cm and 1m for up to half an hour. This one will cost you around Rs.19,000 and click here to read the review.
Be it a brunch, an adventurous trip or a beach vacation, one can't just wait to capture those cherished moments and flash them onto social sites, if we may say so. While cameras have become a standard feature on smartphones, they aren't capable of completely replacing the need for digital cameras, at least not yet. And, yes, you wouldn’t want to damage your high-end camera with reckless handling during a vacation. Manufacturers have been catering to such needs for some time now. While Canon D10 still stays my favourite, there are some nifty recent products available in the market. The Nikon AW100 is one such option (AW stands for All Weather). The camera came out a winner at shock resistant test - it is ruggedly built to ensure that you don’t have to pay too much attention to the camera while vacationing. With a 16MP sensor and street price of Rs. 15,000, it is waterproof up to 10 metres, shockproof from a drop of 5 feet and freeze proof up to -10 degree Celsius. Here's the complete review.
Take it for a swim
Another active outdoor option is the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT3, however it attaches a higher price tag of Rs.25,488. With an extremely solid built, the camera embeds a 2.7-inch screen and 12.1 mega pixel CCD sensor. Its rugged spec sheet talks about being waterproof up to 40m, freezeproof up to minus 10 degree celcius, shockproof up to 6.6-feet and is also dustproof. Besides, the rugged design and feature set, the camera also packs some good tech specs, read the complete review here.
A GPS device is the next in our list of favourite outdoor devices. Now, we know that high-end smartphones are equipped with GPS and maps, but a dedicated GPS device comes with more enhancements, especially for those who love exploring newer places. The nuvi 2565LM is a GPS and Driving Recorder (optional), all-in-one product with free lifetime map updates. The 5-inch large screen has a simple interface and the device is available for purchase at LetsBuy.
A standalone GPS device
Those who love camping and trekking will find the Garmin Forerunner 405CX GPS watch a true outdoor device. It comes with a high-sensitivity GPS receiver and HotFix satellite prediction and locates your position simply, quickly and precisely. It maintains the GPS location even under heavy cover and near tall buildings and trees. Besides, this watch is also a great sports watch and can track your time, distance, pace and heart rate. It can send the data wirelessly to the PC for analysis.
Those who are worried about battery drain during an overnight camp or while on a road trip, can look forward to battery packs that can be charged at your home using a PC or wall mount. These chargers are portable, and you can pick them from renowned companies like CoolerMaster and Energizer, to name a few. They come with varying connectors depending upon the phone you're using. There is also an eco-friendly version of these battery packs, for instance – this CoolerMaster solar battery pack sits pretty on the backside of the iPhone 4 and can charge the device on-the-go as you trek in the scorching sun. Besides, solar backpacks also seem a great option to charge mobile devices. The backside of the bag integrates solar panel that absorbs power to then juice up your devices. The V-dimension Helius Solar Powered Backpack can be grabbed from Junglee.com.
If you don’t have a rugged device and have already spent a hefty amount buying a high-end and not-so-rugged device, then robust cases would surely come to the rescue. For instance, Griffin Survivor Extreme duty case available at fommy.co.in comes with a sturdy built and enhanced capabilities to protect your high-end iPhone 4. These cases aren’t just for high-end products like the iPhone 4, there are cases available for almost all devices. Here is a list of cases that may aptly suit your device at Fommy. Similarly, you can also opt for a casing for your camera and iPod. These cases let you take the camera for a swim without the need for buying a waterproof camera. Those with Canon cameras can find some good underwater cases for them at Naaptol.
These handy devices could ensure that your products are safe and powered, while you enjoy your vacation. If you have some more rugged options, do let us know in the comments section below.
Main Image Credit: Getty Images
Tags: Outdoor gadgets , travel gadgets , travel gadgets India , Motorola defy+ , sony ericsson xperia active , Nikon AW100 , Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT3 , nuvi 2565LM , Garmin Forerunner 405CX GPS , CoolerMaster battery pack , Energizer battery pack , portable battery ,
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