What's coming in 2016?
As 2015 draws to a close, with our bellies full of many a techy wonder, our attention soon turns to the year to come and all the bright, shiny new things that will make our eyes grow large and our wallets considerably lighter. While CES 2016 will no doubt reveal a few more gems (both suspected and unexpected), we at T3 have gathered together the most exciting gadgets and new technology innovations. From Sky's new cable platform Sky Q and the virtual reality headset Vive from HTC to the expected iPhone 7 and Galaxy S7 smartphones, 2016 is already shaping up nicely…
Also check out the best gadgets of 2015
After so many years with its HD set-top box at the peak of the pile, telecomms giant Sky is preparing to give the industry a shakeup with its ambitious new Sky Q package. More than just a flashy new set-top offering, the Sky Q supports 4K as well as enabling seamless and instant transition between recordings, on demand content or purchases direct from the Sky Store. The 2TB box comes with a brand new menu and program guide and, get this, the power to record up to /four/ channels at once, with the option to watch a fifth thrown in for good measure.
Samsung Galaxy S7
With the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge making such an improvement on Samsung's previous iterations in 2015, the next incarnation has a lot to live up to. While the South Korean firm is keeping quiet on its finer specs, there are still plenty of rumours to digest. Reports suggest the S7, which is likely to be the flagship of Samsung's new generation of devices, will feature the bevelled edges of the Edge model as standard, as well a tasty Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor under the hood. We've heard Samsung is pulling out all the stops build wise, so expect lush metals and plastics and extra strong glass this time around.
Let's be clear on this from the off - 2016 will be the year of VR. The virtual reality hype bubble has been expanding exponentially over the last 18 months and with Oculus Rift and PlayStation VR both readying a 2016 launch, the HTC Vive headset will have some serious competition. Well it's a good thing HTC's kit has so much going for it then. Not only has it been produced with cooperation with Valve (yes, it of Steam and Half-Life 2 fame), meaning it'll have game support chops to match Sony's VR headset, it also comes with two bespoke controllers (think Nintendo Wii nunchucks without the copyright infringement).Apple iPhone 7
Apple iPhone 7
If Apple wants to keep something under wraps, you can be damn sure you're not going to see hide nor hair of it until reveal day, but certain details are slowly starting leak out at a glacial pace. A patent filed in 2011 (which went public earlier this year) suggests the next iPhone 7 could lose the headphone jack in the name of extra thinness, while another hot take leads us to believe the next Apple smartphone will be waterproof, too. Finally, FaceTime in the shower! Whatever form it takes, T3 is expecting a serious redesign in 2016 to keep the iPhone on top of the mountain.
Lily Drone Camera
Drones, ranging from budget bots and videogame collector's edition tat to plush high-end versions that would give the MOD a run for its money, are hardly anything new - but a new wave of airborne gizmos are buzzing are their way into 2016, and the Llily Drone Camera is easily the most intriguing. Most notably because it's hands-free - yes, we know all drone are /technically/ hands-free, but this one doesn't even need you to control it remotely. Instead, it tracks a monitor strapped your wrist and can keep pace with you for a full 20 minutes on a single charge. When you're done, the flying wonder will land in the palm of your hand.
Also check out our guide to the best drones.
Another VR headset? Yes… and no. It might seem like Microsoft is simply adding to the many virtual reality gadgets heading to homes in 2016, but its HoloLens kit is more than just a box-ticker. Instead of boxing you away within a closed-off viewing environment, HoloLens takes the interactivity and viewpoint of VR and splices it with reality of the augmented kind. With development kits available from $3,000. With potential applications in everything from videogames to education, Microsoft's 'mixed reality' looks more appealing than ever.
R2-D2 remote control fridge
Sometimes a gadget it so ridiculous and so silly it's nigh on essential. That's the feeling surrounding the 1-to-1 scale replica of R2-D2 that doubles as a fridge. Oh, did we mention it's remote controlled? Yes, a proper locomotive astromech droid in your very own home. Manufactured by Japanese firm Aqua, it can move in any direction, comes complete with all those classic R2 sound effects and even has a built-in projector. In case you're smuggling any Death Star plans and whatnot. The only snag? It'll set you back a rather chilly £5,385.
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Also check out thebest gadgets of 2015