Last updated: 17 November 2016
Winter is coming. If you’re in the northern hemisphere, it’s already the middle of autumn and those summer vacations probably feel like a distant memory. Fortunately, though, there are some tech innovations we’d recommend to cheer yourself up as the weather gets colder.
1. Buy a wearable
With the weather deteriorating, it might be tempting to call off your exercise regime. A voice in your head might be whispering “oh, I couldn’t possibly go jogging today, it’s too cold, I think I’ll watch TV instead”.
But with the rise of wearables, you can grab yourself the perfect exercise buddy. Check out bPay, the wristband from Barclays, for a sneak preview of what owning a wearable is like:
As well as providing you with insights on your running or biking performance, contactless wristbands eliminate allow you to stay connected with social media and text messages. Plus, thanks to NFC technology, if you want to buy a coffee or smoothie during your exercise break, you can do so by simply tapping your wristband against a reader. If you want to make exercising more fun and ensure it’s completely hassle-free this autumn, then a wearable is a must-have.
2. Try out Bitcoin
Bitcoin is the virtual currency revolutionizing the way we pay for goods and services. You might have heard about it recently due to the controversy over Satoshi Nakamoto, a pseudonym for the digital coin’s mysterious creator.
Getting your hands on some Bitcoins is easier than ever before, thanks to a new railway ticket machine in Switzerland. The SBB, the country’s national rail service, has announced a two-year trial, installing 1,000 machines that allow customers to swap money for the virtual currency.
3. Experiment with VR
Nintendo’s Pokemon Go has ensured Augmented Reality has become a phenomenon, as people across the world run around with their smartphones trying to catch virtual creatures (if you’re one of them, make sure you read our blog post on staying safe). Virtual Reality is also set to have a revolutionary impact, particularly in the gaming industry (check out the Oculus Rift and PSVR), allowing you to fully immerse yourself in an imaginary world. You can read more about some of the best VR headsets in our dedicated JustAskGemalto post.
4. Embrace kitchen tech
Autumn’s a great time to start trying out some new recipes and preparing for Christmas. For cooks with an annoying habit of forgetting about food in the oven and burning it, why not invest in IoT-enabled kitchen gadgets?
There are now smart pans which link up with a mobile app and give you detailed information on what you’re cooking, IoT-enabled ovens which scan bar codes and cook food perfectly and even a connected plate that alerts you if you’re overeating. We wonder if the next winner of Masterchef will be an AI-powered, connected kitchen! We wonder what Gordon Ramsay would make of that…`
5. Go travelling!
Just because the weather is getting worse, it doesn’t mean you can’t go travelling. Autumn’s a great time for city breaks, and thanks to NFC technology, you can move around urban environments seamlessly and conveniently. In London, you can use wearable and mobile payments on the Underground and even taxis, while in Seoul, all you have to do is buy a sticker, tag it to your phone and travel with a single tap.
Autumn might bring deteriorating weather, but there’s plenty of innovative gadgets to make sure you’re having fun and exploring outdoors. And thanks to advances in wearables and contactless payments, moving around cities has never been easier.
Do you have any other exciting gadgets to recommend? Let us know by tweeting to us at @Gemalto, or by posting a comment below.