Tech

Next-Level Technology

The latest unexpected gadgets make a giant leap into the future.
By Mark Ellwood

Above: Think of this countertop gadget as Keurig for the 21-and-over set. Drinkworks uses the same pod-style system, but in lieu of coffee, those pellets are filled with ultra-concentrated cocktail mixes. Press a button and in less than a minute, you’ll have a bartender-worthy Mai Tai, White Russian, or one of 23 (and counting) other classics; it carbonates sparkling drinks too. The start-up—a joint project between Keurig Dr Pepper and brewing giant Anheuser-Busch InBev—also offers beer pods and is planning low-carb and low-calorie versions of its recipes. Drinkworks is currently available in Missouri, Florida, Pennsylvania, New York, and California; other states will follow soon. $399, plus a sampler pack of pods for $65; drinkworks.com

The Ministry of Supply clothing company, named after the British government department where the real-life inspiration for James Bond’s Q once worked, is known for its high-tech garments, like shirts made from a material originally developed for NASA to control astronauts’ body temperatures in space. One of its latest products: a self-heating jacket with built-in warming pads. A smartphone app and AI program control the heating panels to reduce or increase their temperature throughout the day. If you’re walking briskly, for example, the panels back off to compensate for your own body heat. When idle, as you stand still waiting for a car, the jacket’s temperature increases. $495; ministryofsupply.com

The PIVOT Yoga two-piece outfit comes with a built-in teacher: the smart fabric is embedded with sensors that track your body positioning in real time, providing instructor-like feedback to improve your placements. There’s no special care needed—they can be laundered like any standard yoga clothing, though they must hang rather than tumble dry—and they only need to be recharged weekly. The package comes bundled, Peloton-style, with a monthly subscription to online video classes by yoga gurus like Briohny Smyth. Your avatar will appear in each class, during which you can ask the instructor for feedback and see a comparison view to help fine-tune poses. Preorder for $99, plus a $19/month subscription; pivot.yoga

In February 2018, Bay Area–based Skydio launched the first truly autonomous drone, packed with 12 cameras that effectively allow it to act like an airborne bodyguard or personal, mobile security camera. Once locked onto its subject, the drone can follow and track it independently, all the while shooting video footage. Next up: Skydio 2, billed as the most uncrashable drone on the planet, with improved flight algorithms and a best-in-class camera (the main critique of the first iteration was the variable quality of footage). $999; skydio.com

Use your smartphone to scent your space with the NEST Smart Home Fragrance Diffuser. The device delivers on-demand aromas of Bamboo and Grapefruit (the brand’s most popular scents) controlled with the touch of a few buttons on the Pura Smart Fragrance app. Adjust intensity and toggle between two aromas to create customized schedules that will keep rooms smelling fresh. Each fragrance vial insert lasts approximately 350 hours and diffuses scents in spaces up to 1,000 square feet. $80; nestfragrances.com

The Opté Precision Skincare System is like a real-life photo-filter. Developed by P&G Ventures, the incubator arm of Procter & Gamble, the wand-sized device scans your skin as it passes over your face, ever vigilant for blemishes, discoloration, and sun damage. Capturing 200 pictures every second, it then uses those data points to determine the exact deposition pattern of camouflaging serum to apply, making the pigment invisible to the naked eye, Insta-filter style. Product is delivered picoliter by picoliter via a built-in thermal inkjet printer that shoots out miniscule droplets of Opté’s proprietary serum to offset skin’s unevenness. Since product is only applied exactly where needed, serum cartridges typically last two to three months. Preorder the wand and starter kit for $599; opteskin.com

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