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Gadgets - May 19, 2017

Great gadgets to help welcome the warmer weather

Summer is just around the corner – here’s some high-tech gear to enhance your enjoyment of the great outdoors

Monster SuperStar BackFloat. Visit

Summer is almost here, which likely means spending more time outside, whether it’s a trip to a cottage or campground, a jog through the neighbourhood or barbecuing on a backyard deck. But that doesn’t mean you have to leave your gadgets behind.

While playing with high-tech toys and spending time outside might seem like mutually exclusive pastimes, the two can complement each other nicely. Need proof? Take a look at these great summer gadgets:

Wild wearable

Staying motivated while exercising can be a challenge, but tech might help you achieve your fitness goals. TomTom Spark 3 ($329) is a smartwatch that can monitor your time, distance, steps taken, heart rate and calories burned. Select the kind of activity you’re doing, while integrated GPS means you won’t get lost if exploring a new city. This weatherproof wearable also stores over 500 songs on your wrist to keep you entertained – with Bluetooth earbuds included – or load it up with audiobooks and podcasts.

Keeping afloat

Much of the fun in warmer months takes place in or around water, but how do you listen to music without damaging your gear? As the name suggests, Monster SuperStar BackFloat ($160) is a floating wireless speaker to use in the pool, at the beach or even while river rafting and innertubing. Available in black with neon-blue or green highlights, this water- and shock-resistant speaker connects to your mobile device via Bluetooth and delivers loud and clear sound with its stereo speakers.

Cut it out

Be the envy of your neighbours – as you watch from the comfort of your Muskoka chair, with cold one in hand – by letting a robotic lawnmower do your cutting for you. While it sounds like science fiction, the Husqvarna Automower 450X ($3,999) can cut grass over 1.25 acres before it needs recharging. It then returns to its base station, powers up and continues mowing again. Outfitted with GPS-assisted navigation and anti-theft alarms, this quiet all-weather mower can handle lawns with a complicated shape.

Meat in the middle

Be an disputed grill master with the help of Weber iGrill 2 ($129), a Bluetooth-enabled meat thermometer. Simply stick the metal probe into whatever you’re barbecuing – such as beef, poultry, pork or lamb – and the temperature of the meat is immediately displayed on the small tabletop unit’s LCD screen, as well as on an app for your iOS or Android device (up to 45 metres away). The accompanying app also includes minimum and maximum temperature alarms, a timer, graphs, recipes and more.