Gadgets & Gizmos

Logitech Trackpad’s glass multi-touch is familiar

It’s taken me a little while to get used to the Logitech T651 Trackpad for Mac but now I’m hooked.

The square shape (actually 5-by-5 1/4 inches) works like a laptop touch-pad except this one is Bluetooth-enabled. It can be connected with a laptop or desktop computer and be used up to 30 feet away.

An ergonomic design has it laying flat but with it angled lower toward your wrist. It has a glass surface where you use your fingers to scroll, click and zoom. The mechanics also allow for left and right click, which we are used to having on a mouse, and are accessible with the Trackpad in the lower corners.

As mentioned, it takes some getting used to but after a few days it’s like I’ve never worked without it.

A quick driver download added a Logitech Preference Manager option in my system preferences to allow controls for speed, clicking options, zooming, battery level and more.

It’s built with a rechargeable battery, which is charged with the included microUSB cable.

Logitech says a full charge is good for a month but the on/off switch lets it save power when not in use.

Details: $60;


Another entry in the crowded portable Bluetooth speaker market is the Switch from Native Union.

The powerful speaker is shaped like a brick (7.75-by-2.75-by-2.7 inches) so it’s not going to fit in any pockets but the sound makes it worth the portability.

Hooking it up is as simple as any other Bluetooth device; just pair it and you’re set. Your device should remember it even after turning it off.

Past that, it’s just rocking good sound with lots of bass from the Switch, which has three drivers and an active subwoofer. When in use, it can be left on a flat surface in either horizontal or vertical orientation.

The speaker has controls for the pairing, power and volume. If you have it paired with a cellphone and a call comes in, the speaker automatically switches to call mode for a hands-free speaker phone.

A USB-out port is built into the side to give you the option of charging your mobile device right from the speaker.

It charges in four hours for up for up to 14 hours of use with the included USB cable.

Details: $149.99 available in black, blue, gray, red and white;


Both of the previous items can benefit from the Ventev universal rapid chargers.

We live in a portable, power-hungry world and these chargers will work at home, cars, airports or even in the air.

They charge just about any device, including Apple, Android, Galaxy, GPS, tablets, e-readers or anything taking a USB connection.

The Dashport r2200 is a dual rapid charger that’s particularly handy, with a pair of USB ports (10W each) built into a 12V car charger. It’s also available with a single 10W port — the r1200 mini.

The Wallport R2200 is a double-ports rapid charger (10W each port) for any wall plug. Also available in the Wallport models are the 2100, a dual USB universal charger (5W each port), and the e1100, a single USB universal “ecocharger” that uses 100 times less standby power than ordinary chargers.

The company is proud of the design and appearance of the chargers and while they do look cool, the bottom line is they work.

Details: Prices range from $20 to $35;

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