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We Need To Talk More About This Alexa Moto Mod That Costs $150

Last week I wrote about two new upcoming Moto Mods. A Polaroid Instant Printer and an Alexa Speaker. I focused on the printer, because it’s just way more interesting, and mostly skipped the Alexa speaker, essentially just saying ‘Get a Dot’. Well that all changes now, cause at a whopping $150, Motorola must be out of their freaking minds.

Where do I start? How about that phones like the HTC u11 and the, just announced, Motorola X4 already have Alexa integration built-in and don’t require an expensive and bulky hump. Also, it’s a bulky hump that you’re supposed to leave attached to your phone like a sad turtle shell. Not to mention, to get the best response from Alexa, you should lay your phone face down on a table, seriously.

And most obviously, you can just buy an Amazon Echo for $99. Like a real, fully-functional, flagship model Echo. And have enough left for an Echo Dot as well. But hey, it works as a better, louder speaker for the phone, and that’s cool I guess.

What more can I say except, pre-order yours now because these things will sell out fast.

TheVerge ]

Is There A 7-Day Waiting Period For This Bolt-Action Pen?

 

Pens are pretty cool, let’s face it. You can write, you draw stuff, you can twirl it in your hands; it’s a real triple-threat. But let’s be honest, clicking a pen is lame. Since the first retractable pen in 1950, the process of clicking a pen has really run its course and people have been basically rioting in the streets, demanding a better option.

That’s where the Bastion Bolt Action Pen comes in. It’s a premium pen that retracts using a mechanism similar to a bolt-action rifle, and it looks awesome. You can just sit there and click your pen all day long like you’re training to be an Army Ranger. It even comes in stainless steel or carbon fiber flavors. And because it’s a premium pen, it’s compatible with a number of refill cartridges.

It’s available on Kickstarter for a base price of $39 for the stainless steel, and plans to ship in January.

Kickstarter ]

This Candle That Smells Like A New Mac Now Smells Even More Like A New Mac

 

Last year, Twelve South, an Apple accessories company, released a candle that claimed to smell like you’ve just unboxed a certain $2,000 aluminum computer. It sold out quickly, but it didn’t really smell like a new Mac and it didn’t really have that Apple-look.

Thankfully, they’ve fixed that with the Inspire [mac candle N°2], their new-New Mac candle with an updated profile of bergamot, lemon, and tarragon (Hey, I know one of those words), and it claims to smell much more accurate than last year’s model. It even has a new updated design that really makes it look like something Apple made with a rounded white jar that’s just as pristine as many Apple products.

Personally I really like the new design. It’s cleaner and looks easier to hold in your hand. Last year’s first-gen model may have sold well, but many insiders knew there were still some bugs to get worked out and this second-gen model looks like it might be a real flagship for the company. The candle sells for $29, but some of that money goes to help young people in STEM education, so it’s worth a good cause.

No word on whether this model supports wireless charging or not, but I’ll update if I get more information.

TwelveSouth ]

UPDATE: I just found out candles don’t need to be charged.

Garmin Speak is a GPS That Puts Alexa In Your Car

The Garmin Speak is an odd looking GPS, it doesn’t have a traditional display like other GPS systems, but it still includes a small display which can readout upcoming turns and lane guidance arrows. Many navigation apps do the same using the top 1/4 of the screen, and after a while you sort of stop looking at the satellite image and just focus on the upcoming turns. So I actually like the idea of having a readout of just turn-by-turn directions.

Now, if that was all the Garmin Speak did, it’d still be an interesting piece of tech, but Garmin has teamed up with Amazon to allow you to tap into Alexa while driving. Much like any Echo device, you can adjust music, ask questions, issue commands and control smart home products without ever taking your hands off the steering wheel.

It looks pretty cool, and might be worth the $149 price for some, but I think it’s going to be hard to sell people on a GPS in 2017 when you can buy a $10 suction cup and stick your phone to your windshield for directions.

Call me when the price is slashed in half though.

Garmin Speak ]

Save BIG on Amazon Echo Dot (2nd Gen), Echo Show, and the All-New Echo (2nd Gen)

The holidays are coming fast. Better start your Christmas shopping early. If you got tech-savvy people on your gift list, today’s deals on the popular Amazon products will save you a lot of money on gift buying in groups!

all-new Echo 2

First, the all-new Echo 2, which will be released by the end of October is on sale in packs of 3’s. If you pre-order 3, you can save $50 if you use the code ECHO3PACK. If you have intentions of availing the deal, better not hesitate. The offer’s good for a limited time only.

Learn more about the Echo 2nd Gen here.

Echo Show

In case you still don’t know about the Echo Show. It’s like an Echo that can show you things like Amazon video content, live security camera footage, music lyrics, and more. Today, you can save $100 if you buy 2 of these.

Learn more about the Echo show here.

Echo Dot

Lastly, the classic Echo Dot is having a package sale too. If you buy 6, you get 1 free (saving $50) with the code DOT6PACK. If you buy 3, you can save $20 with the code DOT3PACK. 

 

‘Nude’ App Automatically Detects and Protects Your Filthy Photos

Every person has been in that situation where you hand your phone to someone to show them a hilarious picture of your friend Derek being an idiot, and suddenly you remember those pictures you still have hanging around on your phone. You know the ones. And you’re thinking ‘For the love of God, don’t swipe’. Your forehead starts sweating bullets until that glorious moment when they hand your phone back to you.

Now you can be at ease with Nude (that’s its name, seriously), an iPhone app which automatically scans your library using AI learning to detect naughty parts, and once found, hides a copy in a password protected library on the app itself. The app then deletes the original from your library and from iCloud. Sounds odd, but don’t worry, the photos are never sent to ‘Nude’ servers. Instead, the app uses image recognition on the device itself, never allowing the images to leave the phone.

Now, I know none of our readers have anything like that going on in the photo libraries, but in case you were wondering the app is available now, its free to download and costs $0.99 per month. Maybe now you can show Nana your vacation photos from Lake Titicaca, without worrying about her seeing…Well, you know.

9to5Mac ]

The Super NT is a Modern Way To Play All The Super Nintendo Games Not On The SNES Classic

Though the SNES Classic is great, and it is great, it’s a bummer that so many great games were left out. The SNES Classic still has a fantastic library, but what if you’re looking for a way to play all of your old favorites? You can of course, buy an old Super Nintendo, but you can never be sure of its condition, not to mention it won’t play games in HD.

But Analogue is offering a solution, the Super NT. The same guys behind the beautiful (and pricey) aluminum NT Mini are back with another high quality, modern way to play you favorite Nintendo games. Like its predecessor, the Super NT will play all games of the Super Nintendo and Super Famicom’s library and at 1080p through HDMI.

However, unlike its predecessor, the Super NT will be much more affordable at $189. Unfortunately, the Super NT is not made with same stunning aluminum, but it still comes in 4 great colors, including a sharp black model and transparent model that shows off the goodies. Besides, the company says the console is still built like a tank and avoiding aluminum helps keep that price down.

The Super NT is available for pre-order now and will ship in February, however controllers will need be purchased separately from 8BitDo.

Super NT ] VIA [ TheVerge ]

You Never Have To Leave The Couch To Draw The Blinds Again With AXIS Gear

How many times have you been sitting on the couch, about to watch some Netflix when you realize you left the blinds open and wished you can lower them remotely? Not once? You just get up and close the blinds, which takes like 2 seconds? Well, if you had wished for a solution to lowering the blinds remotely then your prayers have just been answered (again, just pretend this a major problem in your life).

The Axis Gear is a motorized smart device that can draw your blinds for you. It works through an app that you use to control the blinds. It can also be setup to open and close the blinds automatically at certain times. A neat trick if you want to try using that big ball of fire as an alarm clock. It’ll even let you open or close all connected Axis Gears in a room with the app or by touching the ‘group’ button on the device.

It’s a neat device and if you looking at automatic blinds, buying an Axis Gear is certainly cheaper (and smarter) than most motorized blinds. But at $180 per unit, it’s not for the faint of wallet. And if you’re like me, then light is your enemy and you try to avoid it.

Axis Gear ] VIA [ DigitalTrends ]

Sensibo Sky Makes Your Old Air Conditioner Smart Home Compatible

Smart Air Conditioners look awesome, being able to turn on your A/C before you arrive home after a hot day, while still being energy conscious, puts them at the top-tier of things you actually want to be a smart device. But if your old A/C is still running well, there may be no reason to upgrade your entire unit. If you still want that smart capability though, you might be in luck with the Sensibo Sky.

The Sensibo Sky is a small device which can make just about any air conditioner smart compatible, allowing you to turn on and off, as well as set temperatures for your A/C. It does this by acting like a remote (so the one requirement is that you A/C uses a remote). Once setup on an adjacent or opposite wall, the Sky will connect to your phone and can issues commands to your air conditioner by acting as a wall-mounted remote control. It’s even compatible with Alexa and Google commands, and seems to have impressive response times.

The Sky seems like a really cool (haha) device to make your life a little more comfortable. It’s available now for $119, which is a little pricey but could be a worthwhile investment for anyone who’s unlikely to upgrade their A/C unit for a few years.

[ Amazon ]