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Charged: High-Tech Summer Essentials

Five smart new products that will help you beat the heat and get the most out of summer

by Kat Herriman
on 01 July 2014

Whether your summer plans have you headed overseas for a safari or only as far as the backyard, smart tech is getting more clever and more seasonally conscious. From air conditioners that know when you're on your way home and can be operated by smartphones to speakers that can hold their own in the deep end, these five high-tech products will help ensure the ultimate summer experience.


Warm weather offers a chance to reconnect with the environment—and devices like Edyn change and enhance those relationships. Essentially a smart sensor for the home garden, Edyn offers a holistic digital solution that is in tune with nature. Capable of being synced to a smartphone, Edyn's sensor compiles real-time data about soil, air and weather and compares it against local conditions in order to provide informed suggestions tailored to help get the most out of your garden. The second component of the Edyn system is a watering sensor that connects to your hose. Synthesizing information from the soil sensor, the smart valve is able to control water flow to suit your patch of green's exact needs. Equipped with an extensive library of species, the straightforward app offers an unprecedented opportunity to tap into the potential of your backyard. (Currently being funded on Kickstarter.)


Air conditioners can be a source of endless summer strife, which is why developments like the Aros are there to help everyone breath easier. A collaboration between Quirky and General Electric—the smartphone controlled air-conditioner offers a streamlined approach to cooling your home. Designed to seamlessly integrate with one’s lifestyle, the updated interface takes into account the weather reports and usage history as well as GPS tracking in order to self-regulate so the temperature is perfect from the moment you walk in the door. Since it's WiFi-capable, the unit is also able to give real-time usage feedback so users can clearly identify ways to cutback on peak energy consumption and adjust habits in order to be more budget-friendly and green. ($300)


Released earlier this year, the rugged Fugoo Sport is a Bluetooth-enabled speaker perfect for waterside activities. Completely water- and sand-proof, the compact sound system is just as safe on the pool deck and the beach as it in your bedroom. Backed up by 40 hours of battery life, the easily portable system can be brought on even the most adventurous summer vacations—either worn with a strap or attached to a bike mount or tripod. ($199)


Coin’s long-awaited debut is making it possible to sport a trimmer wallet to the ice cream truck this summer. Designed to make carrying multiple credit and membership cards obsolete, this smartcard is able to synthesize all your accounts into a singular device that can be swiped anywhere. Managed through a corresponding app, users enter their existing cards into the system with a swiping mechanism and then select the card they need by using a simple toggle. For those who tend to misplace their wallets, Coin also provides an added layer of protection by sending a Bluetooth-enabled alert when the card strays too far from your phone. With a battery that lasts two years, Coin provides a season-less service that will spare you from bulky pockets at the beach. (Available for pre-order for $55 with shipping.)

Cold Bruer

Iced coffee is one of summer’s simple pleasures. Unfortunately, cold brew requires a little more foresight in regard to preparation than its hot equivalent, which is where the Cold Bruer comes in. Inspired by the iconic hourglass shape of the Chemex, the innovative glass tower is in-home cold-brewing an easy, overnight undertaking. Using your beans of choice, the Bruer is able to slowly extract the flavor over five to seven hours, creating a smooth and rich iced coffee without the acidic aftertaste. Simple to clean and nice to look at, the product offers a complete and aesthetically pleasing brewing experience that would please any caffeine expert. ($75)

All images courtesy of respective brands.

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