Gadget Hound–Spanish Edition

In Alaska Travelgram, Consumer, Shopping, Technology by scott

Each time I take a big trip, it’s fun to test out new gadgets and travel accessories. Here’s what we’re working with today:

a. Ex Officio undies and t-shirts. OKOK, I never believed in this stuff. But right now I’m in downtown Pamplona, Spain. And it was CHILLY this morning. It will be HOT this afternoon. Having these quick-dry undergarments makes all the difference when you’re traveling with girls. HA. Otherwise–who cares? From Magellan’s.

b. Tweakers. These are portable speakers–SUPER portable, for your laptop/iPod/iPhone. They put out a big sound in a little package. Perfect for warming up the hotel room with your tunes. Watch the video.

c. STAND-OUT GADGET AWARD. Ohh, am I loving’ my portable mi-fi card from Xcom Global! Hey, we did our research and we’re staying at hotels/apartments with wi-fi. But often the wi-fi doesn’t work…or it’s just too slow. These little mi-fi cards let you plug in (wirelessly) up to FIVE devices (iPad, iPod, laptop, smartphone, etc.) into the local 3G network. Here in Spain, the wireless network is almost as fast as the DSL lines into the room. GREAT stuff. Xcom Global has the cards for almost any country. CHECK IT OUT!!

d. Xoom Tablet Computer from GCI. This Android Tablet Computer was a LIFESAVER last night as we drove into Pamplona IN THE DARK (we stayed too long at the wine tasting!!).

If you’ve ever approached an old fortified European city AT NIGHT, you know how confusing it can be to find your destination. Well, the combination of the Xoom, the Xcom Global mi-fi card and a world-class navigator (my wife, Christy), we were able to trace a turn-by-turn path to our hotel. It’s just one of the many virtues of this device–but the GoogleMaps interface is fabulous. Since it’s essentially a Google tablet, it works well with Gmail, Youtube and all things Google. But also–Skype/Facebook/Twitter/Foursquare. Luvin’  it. Check it out.

e. International phone. Sorry to say the jury’s still out on this. I still have not found a cost-effective way to use the data and “smart” functions of my smartphone without busting the bank. I’ve tried the local SIM option on a “dumb” GSM phone–and it’s a stop-gap measure, because we HAVE to have a mobile phone while traveling.  Ideas? I’m all ears on this one.


Share this Post