Our technology round-up features a handy battery pack and a compact flip phone.
If you don’t want something that folds out from phone to a device closer to a tablet, Samsung’s latest might appeal: it folds in half to become much more pocketable. This model comes with a glorious external display that is so versatile that you often don’t need to unfold it at all. You can also use it for photography, so that your subject can see themselves as you’re snapping them. It folds completely flat to prevent dirt getting in and the crease that you see when the screen is unfolded (a issue that dogs many folding phones) is only visible when the screen is off.
The USB-C socket of this versatile battery pack lets you connect an iPhone or other smartphone to charge by cable, and the white circle wirelessly charges the Apple Watch and second-generation AirPods Pro. It’s the first battery pack that fast-charges the Watch too, from flat to 80 per cent in 45 minutes, and is powerful enough to charge the Watch and a smartphone at the same time. All from a sleek, lightweight battery so portable that it’ll become indispensable.
Beats by Dr Dre (the Apple brand that isn’t AirPods) has launched a tremendous new pair of over-ear headphones. AirPods are designed to work with Apple hardware but Beats, magnanimously, work equally well with an Android as an iPhone. They include seamless pairing, better findability if you lose them and great audio. Battery life is strong at up to 40 hours (24 with noise-cancelling turned on). Unlike Apple AirPods Max, these headphones come with a 3.5mm cable and are more keenly priced too.
This is a remarkable portable sound system that makes the audio from a smartphone or tablet more exciting. It comes in the form of a squat lozenge with a circular speaker at either end. Held in place magnetically, these can be undocked and placed behind the listener to work as satellite speakers. The effect is highly immersive, with Sony software making it feel as though the audio is coming from every direction – even overhead. You can adjust the volume and the distribution of the sound using the buttons on the main speaker or through the Sony app. The audio output is big and powerful from the main unit and the extra units add a spectacular 3D effect. The battery lasts as long as 30 hours; a 10-minute recharge is enough for a couple of hours.