1. The aware eyewear.
From bustling city streets to airport terminals, there are plenty of instances where you shouldn’t drown out your surroundings, even as you listen to music or take a call. Unlike earbuds that can muffle environmental noise, the Bluetooth Frames by Soundcore ($200; amazon.com) tuck four speakers and two microphones into sunglass temples. The batteries in the temples run about five hours per charge and, because they’re removable, you can swap scratch- and shatter-resistant frames for a new look ($50 each).
2. Big screen, tiny package.
Slightly larger than an iPad mini, the Solar Portable by Nebula ($600; amazon.com) beams three hours of content — from Paramount to presentations — in 1080p using a built-in battery and speakers. Sync it to a network, then binge-watch Netflix, play saved movies off its 8GB storage, or cast to it from a smartphone. An HDMI input lets you pipe in presentations from laptops or run a plug-in streamer like Roku — all without a tripod (because its fold-down foot helps adjust the placement).
3. One charger to rule them all.
The last thing you need is another adapter. But the USB-C Nano II 65W by Anker ($60; us.anker.com) will recharge everything faster than the power bricks that came with your devices. Anker’s engineers swapped in more efficient gallium nitride for standard-issue silicone parts. But all you’ll care about is the Nano’s small size — about a quarter of Apple’s 61-watt cube — and the speed. It recharges a MacBook in about two hours and an iPhone up to three times faster than normal.
4. The clever case.
A phone case with legs is nothing new, but the Mobile Tripod by Peak Design ($80; peakdesign.com) might be the most useful one around. About the thickness of three quarters, the aluminum mount magnetically docks to the brand’s case ($40; or $30 for an adapter for a third-party case) with a ball head design for nearly full articulation. Splay the legs to dial in the perfect angle for photos or video, gather them to hold the phone with a mini selfie stick, or set the tripod on your desk for the perfect viewing angle.
5. Power in the pocket.
There is a direct correlation between a phone charger’s usefulness and how easy it is to carry. The ChargeCard by AquaVault ($60; theaquavault.com) has the same footprint as an Amex, so it slips into a wallet sleeve, but its internal battery has enough guts to nearly fully charge a smartphone in a pinch. About the weight of two AA batteries, the card’s swappable cables let you juice up iOS and Android phones with a compact design that’s easy to hold against the device.Internet Explorer Channel Network