12 best gadgets in the world today: T3's definitive list of the top tech you can own

Here we present the best gadgets available right now in 12 key categories, to save you the hard work of doing all the research yourself. In short, if you're starting from scratch and want the very best there is, then this is your new shopping list.

This list will only be updated when something new emerges that is capable of toppling an existing product from its perch – there may therefore be months when the 12 products featured here don't change.

But this is an exclusive club, and only tech that is capable of achieving a towering standard of excellence gets in.

1. Best smartphone - iPhone 7 Plus

A beautiful refinement of a tried and tested design, the iPhone 7 Plus is the most attractive and easy to use handset on the market today. It's splash proof, comes with a battery that can last up to a whole day's use, and boasts a faster-than-light A10 Fusion processor. These aspects, partnered with enhanced storage, powerful dual cameras and a sleeker design, means that the iPhone 7 Plus is a superb all-round smartphone and definitely worthy of your consideration.

When reviewing the iPhone 7 Plus, T3.com said that:

"If you're an iPhone user and you fancy picking up the best smartphone around, this should definitely be your first choice."

Read: iPhone 7 Plus review: much more than a subtle redesign

More: Best iPhone 7 Plus deals and tariffs

best tech gadgets

2. Best home audio - Naim Mu-so Qb

When undertaking an ears-on with this stunning piece of audio tech, T3's own resident audiophile Duncan Bell said:

"This thing sounds superb. Cracking. As Jim Bowen would say, super, smashing, lovely, great. It [delivers] a rich, delicious, chocolatey sound with plenty of well controlled bass and even a reasonable stab at stereo, considering the small size. All in all, there's very little to complain about with the Qb. Given how well its £895 big bro' did it should absolutely fly off the shelves, and it deserves to."

Nuff said.

Read: Naim Mu-so Qb review

best tech gadgets

3. Best tablet - iPad Pro 9.7

The iPad Air 2 ruled the roost here for ages as, really, it has enough power and perfomance to satisfy most people. However, finally the iPad Pro 9.7 has taken it down, with its awesome 2048 x 1536 resolution screen, A9X CPU and 4K video shooting capability helping it take the crown.

Tasty hardware specs mixed with Apple's trademark flair and style? Yes please!

Read: iPad Pro 9.7 review

4. Best headphones - Bose QuietComfort QC35

The best Bluetooth headphones, with noise-cancelling to boot

Ridiculously good noise cancelling
Excellent sonics
Great comfort
Dull looks belie the price
…That price being on the high side

So, I once wore these into a full-on rave (albeit for kids) on London's South Bank, and didn't even realise until taking them off. The noise cancelling on these cans is just great.

The audio in general, as ever with Bose, is very solid rather than world beating. In ideal listening conditions, we prefer Bowers & Wilkins' headphones. 

However, allied to the noise cancelling, the overall result is very hard to fault. It's forceful when it needs to be, but the silence generated by the anti-noise tech allows room for plenty of subtlety. 

Does it sound 'natural'? No of course it doesn't. It's digitally compressed, wirelessly-transmitted sound, which is generally going to be from music files that are compressed in the first place, that's then had digital ambient de-noising applied to it. 

But the QuietComfort 35 is a suitably involving and enthralling, yet very easy listen. 

Add 24 hours of battery life, easy pairing to two devices (you swap between them with the flick of a switch or via a mobile app), and pillowy ear pads, and you have the best Bluetooth headphones to date. 

Even Bose's styling, which for many years was only really suitable for estate agents travelling Premium Economy, is now quite contemporary and verging on cool. It's not the most substantial-feeling pair of headphones ever, but the positive side effect of that is the QC35 is also very light.

Expensive but worth it, in short.

5. Best TV - LG OLED E6 Series

Combining stunning contrast with an ultra-thin design and exceptional sound

55-inch: LG OLED55E6 | 65-inch: LG OLED65E6

Amazing black levels
Stunning thin design
Missing details in bright areas
Very expensive

The OLEDE6's incredibly slim 'picture on glass' design technique creates simply the most gorgeous TVs ever made. Each OLED pixel produces its own light and colour independent of its neighbours. Unprecedentedly deep black colours sit right alongside even the brightest HDR whites without a hint of light 'bleed' - something just not possible with current LCD technologies. The OLED E6 series delivers levels of contrast and light control just not possible with LCD. 

This works wonders for high-contrast HDR sources, as well as making today's standard dynamic range sources look better than on any other TV. The OLEDE6's lose some detail in very bright HDR areas, and occasionally suffer fleeting colour noise. They're not cheap, either. But none of that stops them being utterly brilliant.

A sound bar attached to the bottom of the screen, meanwhile, produces sound quality that wouldn't be out of place on an external audio system. 

6. Best smartwatch - Apple Watch Series 2

The original Apple Watch was far from a perfect product, however it was still streets ahead of the rest of the competition on launch. Series 2 is what Series 1 should have been originally, with a number of improvements and fixes, such as 50-metre water resistance and in-built GPS, making it an even more compelling package. When reviewing Apple Watch Series 2, T3.com's Editor Dan Grabham said that:

"Apple Watch remains one of the nicest-looking devices you can own. And with watchOS 3 and the extra features, it's now properly useful throughout the day, too."

Read: Apple Watch Series 2 review

best tech gadgets

7. Best TV service - Sky Q

T3's own Dan Grabham, when reviewing Sky Q, said that:

"It's futile to deny that Sky Q is brilliant. [It is] a seamless experience in an age where the connected home remains a bit of a hotchpotch. So, while it's expensive and has quirks and missing features, Sky Q is a brilliant system that takes TV watching to another level. It also becomes very easy to use very quickly. If your main TV is in constant demand (and/or you want multiroom) and you're happy to pay the extra to upgrade, Q is for you."

Read: Sky Q review

best tech gadgets

8. Best fitness wearable - Garmin Fenix 3 Sapphire

A sport watch that really does do it all, the Fenix 3 Sapphire just knocks it out of the park with its rock hard build, bombastic aesthetic, comprehensive feature set (it can deliver metrics for running, cycling, swimming, rowing and more) and advanced technology. Indeed, with a 1.2-inch sunlight-readable colour display, 3-axis compass, altimeter and barometer, as well as stainless steel antenna with GPS and GLONASS reception, you strap this to your wrist and you are basically ready for anything life throws at you.

Read: Best running watch for new, improving and serious runners

9. Best laptop - HP Spectre 13

A Windows laptop with the sleekness of a MacBook

CPU: 2.5GHz Intel Core i7-6500U (dual-core, 4MB cache, up to 3.1GHz with Turbo Boost | Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 520 | RAM: 8GB LPDDR3 SDRAM (1,866MHz) | Screen: 13.3-inch, 1,920 x 1,080 FHD IPS UWVA BrightView Corning Gorilla Glass WLED-backlit display | Storage: 256GB SSD (PCIe; NVMe; M.2)

Sleek and lightweight
Tactile keyboard
Standard 1080p display
Mushy trackpad

HP's most luxurious laptop borrows the Lenovo Yoga 900S's style and the MacBook's bag-friendly dimensions. The Spectre 13 is so thin that tapping away on its tactile keyboard almost feels like your fingers are tap-dancing on the table. Its biggest advantage over the MacBook is its Intel Core-series processor inside, which lends it the winning combination of dazzling looks and computing muscle. Packing three USB-C ports for hooking up peripherals (note that you'll need a converter to use your old USB-A ones), the Spectre 13 doesn't just look like a laptop from the future - it has one eye trained on it too.

Read the full review: HP Spectre 13

10. Best connected home - Amazon Echo

It's certainly not perfect, however this nifty little device from Amazon is not only really quite handy in a use-it-every-day type way, but at only £149.99 it is also rather affordable too. Allowing you play your music, order food and products, and control lights, switches and thermostats with the power of your voice, among many other things, Amazon Echo is a versatile and forward-thinking product.

Read: 14 unusual requests you can ask your Amazon Echo

best tech gadgets

11. Best camera - Sony A7R II

Canon and Nikon have dominated the camera market for years, however new kid Sony is really starting to make waves in the market with a series of excellent products.

One of the most notable of these is the superb A7R II, an absolute corker of a camera that comes with a massive 42-megapixels, making it perfect for landscape and portrait photography.

Partner this with a solid and premium feel compact body, as well as rather tasty video capabilities, and you've got one hell of a camera.

Read: Best camera: whether you're after CSC, DSLR or action cam, these are the top snappers around

best tech gadgets

12. Best automotive - Land Rover Discovery

We think Land Rover's Discovery is the ultimate lifestyle accessory. It's equally at home travelling in a convoy across the desert as it is dropping the kids off at school. Nothing can faze the Discovery, and that's mostly down to the smart off-roading tech Land Rover has spent years developing. The updated model also features a raft of upgraded tech inside the cabin, with semi-autonomous driving, an intuitive infotainment system, and nifty features such as the ability to fold and unfold seats with a smartphone app. Simply put, one of the world’s most capable cars is now more luxurious, connected, and easier to live with. We think it looks great as well.

Here are some details/specs:

Price: from £43,495 | landrover.co.uk

Towing capacity: 3,500kg Wheelbase: 2,923mm Wading depth: 900mm Gearbox: 8-speed automatic transmission Features: Hill Descent Control, All-Terrain Progress Control (ATPC), Terrain Response 2, 360° Parking Aid, Activity Key, Adaptive Cruise Control, Incontrol Touch Pro 10-inch Touchscreen