Gadgets :: January 4, 2017

By Gregg Ellman
(@Greggellman)

All you need to know about the new Jaybird X3 sport headphones is that they are as good as any sport style earbuds I’ve seen.

With a wireless (Bluetooth 4.1) connection to your smartphone you can take the sweat-proof earbuds for bike ride, to the gym or even climb mountains since they have enhanced-comfort ear fins and a selection of tips to ensure the right fit for any type of sport activity. Along with staying in place, they wear with comfort.

The Jaybird website has a great line about the universal secure-fit design: “These buds are sticking with you no matter how crazy active you get.”

To keep the sweat out, they are designed with a double hydrophobic nano coating.

The big sound comes from 6mm drivers but what I found really cool was the MySound App (iOS and Android), which lets  you customize your sound settings and then save them to the X3 earbuds. This lets  your music sound the same, no matter where the music comes from.

After a full charge, the internal battery is good for about eight hours of tunes before a charge is needed. An in-line remote makes music selections and handsfree calls.

With the Bluetooth 4.1 connection, two users can have a pair of the X3 sport earbuds connected to the same music source simultaneously.

www.jaybirdsport.com $129.99

For a lack of a better term, portable Bluetooth speakers are a dime a dozen so they need more than sound to stand out in the crowded tech product line.

The Jam Voice is a Bluetooth and Wi-Fi speaker that does just fine at playing your music and also works as a handsfree call speaker system. But what the Jam does to make it stand out is accept commands to turn your lights on or off, give you the weather forecast, news, traffic alerts and a lot more.

It’s built with Alexa integration, Amazon’s voice service, giving you a personal assistant, essentially making it command central for your smart home. So now instead of getting up to turn on an alarm or to control an air system, just talk to the Jam Voice. 

Devices you want to control must have Alexa integration; otherwise you’ll be talking to yourself.

Everything is controlled with a few buttons; the basics being controlling your music and volume. To get to Alexa, just press the Amazon button.

You get a 4-hour battery life from the 3-by-3-by-3-inch speaker or if it’s staying in the same place just have it connected to AC power at all times.

With the built-in Wi-Fi, Jam speakers let you connect multiple Jams into the same system for a multiple room sound controlled by the Jam app.

www.jamaudio.com $79, available in white or black

The slick-looking GEAR4 Carnaby iPhone 7/7 Plus case is built with cutting-edge D3O technology along with Apple color matching, which hard core Apple fans demand from accessory.

And if your like me and have no idea what D30 technology is, I’ll tell you: “it’s a material used by Olympic ski teams and the military, to deliver superior impact protection through advanced shock absorption,” according to a recent press release from the company.

It’s designed with a slim look to match the new slim phones so they remain bulk free. The back has a perforated design to let you show off the color of your new iPhone.

An exterior bumper protects your phone from bumps and small drops.

www.gear4.com $39.99

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