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Lifestyle

Wearable, wireless and good-looking gadgets

When it comes to technology, there are few limits. And while it’s difficult to predict “the next big thing”, what we do see is that consumers want their future to be fun, good-looking, wireless, and creative – just like themselves!

Amazon EchoTaking care of business

When Amazon first announced the Echo, many didn’t know what to make of it or how to describe it in words. Think of it as a personal assistant for your home: It can stream music, take notes, look up answers online, check the weather, and wake you up in the morning.

When it comes to our homes, the future will be built around electronic assistants that can make everyday tasks easier, ­interact with you, and learn as they go. The thermostat from Nest learns your schedule (day, night, home, work) and programs itself to conserve energy. Bonus: It looks great, and you can control it from your phone.

Chemex Coff eemakerWhat’s cooking?

The living room and the ­kitchen are packed with ­technology, but they’re moving in opposite directions. While living-room technology keeps pushing forward, the kitchen is heading back to basics. In keeping with growing demand for organic food and craft beer, 2015 will see a rise in manual and analog gadgets that put existing technology in a modern wrapping.

Targeting your tablet

It seems like it’s been ages since Apple pioneered the market in 2010, and while it might seem like they peaked in 2014, tablets are the next area of significant growth for the tech industry.

In the future we’ll see tablets targeting more specific needs, such as Samsung Nook for readers, Microsoft Surface and ASUS Transformer closing the gap between laptop and tablet, and the Lenovo Yoga, which is a hybrid that you can bend, with a subwoofer and even a built-in projector.

Left: ASUS Transformer. Right: Lenovo Yoga Pro

Go forth and create!

Creativity is a driving force for many, and we have never had more tools to help. The Contour and the GoPro will continue to expand the action camera market next year, but even more spectacular ones are coming. The Panono is a panoramic ball camera that captures everything in all directions when you throw it in the air.

Another company, DJI (its tag-line is “The future of possible”), makes flying cameras with radar positioning, compass, video in HD, and an app to adjust and tweak everything.

Left: DJIPhantom 2 Vision plus. Right: Panono

Fighting for your future

Track your sleep, measure your steps, answer calls and messages. Until recently wearable devices were centered largely around the fitness world, with Polar, Fitbit, and Jawbone making a big splash. But with powerhouse names like Google (Glass) and Apple (Watch) taking to the stage, everybody wants a piece of the action – and they will fight for your neck, your wrist, and even your eyes. Motorola is back in the game with its Moto 360, but the most interesting player is Intel and its multiyear alliance with Luxottica. Intel has a commanding 90 percent share of the chip market for notebooks. Italy’s Luxottica is best known for eyewear, along with brands such as Oakley and Ray-Ban. Together they want to own the future.

From left: Moto 360 wristwatch by Motorola, Google glass, Jawbone Fitness tracker

Text: Øystein Tronstad

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