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Latest Articles in Product Reviews

Furnish app with green armchair

Furnish a Room Virtually with this App

Take a photo of a bare room and—through partnerships with IKEA, Crate & Barrel, Pottery Barn, and Herman Miller—the Furnish app places furniture candidates in the room so you can see how the space would look. The app was originally known as IKEA Now, but changed it to Furnish after some legal issues over the name. Free in the iTunes store.
August 22, 2014
oralb smart toothbrush

Smart Toothbrush Tracks Your Brushing Habits

For the people who use them regularly, fitness trackers give feedback that can be the difference between staying on the couch and getting up and going for a walk. It seems logical that the same motivation-through-metrics idea might eventually make its way to toothbrushing. When synched with the free Oral B app on an iOS or Android device, the Oral-B SmartSeries brushes connect via Bluetooth and give x-y graphs showing your brushing habits. Two models will be available: $219 for the Oral-B SmartSeries 7000 and $159 for the Oral-B SmartSeries 5000.
August 14, 2014
TapPainter app color swatches and shape selector.

Painting Your Walls? This App Will Help

The camera in a tablet or phone is powerful enough to render high-resolution images of interior space, and this app uses that capability to pick wall colors. Starting with a photo of the room, TapPainter draws from brand-name paint color inventories to find potential shades, then applies the new coats. Available only for iOS, $2.99.
July 29, 2014
Dyson handheld vacuum head.

Dyson Wireless Handheld Vacuum for Small Jobs

James Dyson made his name making high-end, beautifully structured, and functionally impressive vacuum cleaners. An offshoot from the typical canister and upright vacuums Dyson makes is its wireless handhelds, the latest of which is the DC59 Motorhead. The benefit of one of these models is that since they’re so light and maneuverable, it’s easier to clean intermittently. The DC59 can’t match the suction power of a dedicated upright, but it's ideal for quick dust removal, sucking up spider webs, or clearing broken glass. Available for $550.
July 28, 2014
Jake Dyson Ariel light in grey.

LED Suspension Light for Illuminating Large Areas

If the name Jake Dyson sounds familiar, he’s the son of the famous James Dyson, of vacuum cleaner and hand-dryer fame. Jake, however, made a name for himself with the CSYS desk lamp with a bulb built to last for 50 years. The same ingenious heat-diffusion technology in the CSYS shows up in the Ariel lights, which are designed to illuminate large areas like a kitchen table or workbench.
July 28, 2014
Nosiboo babycare nasal aspirator in pink and blue.

Nasal Aspirator for Young Children

Caring for a young child is full of unglamorous but necessary practices, but this pediatrician-designed device is meant to make nasal care more hygienic and effective. Babies cannot breathe through their noses until they hit six months of age, and even after that age, they’re not able to properly blow their noses. That means their nasal passages and sinuses can clog and play host for germs or inhibit proper breathing. Nasal aspirators draw out the mucus to alleviate congestion, and the Nosiboo is to other drug store aspirators as a Dyson is to other vacuum cleaners. Available online, $192.
July 28, 2014
Escali smartconnect kitchen scale.

Smart Kitchen Scale Is The New Food Journal

If the glut of fitness trackers available on the market is any indication, measurements and numbers motivate people. That fact works well for activity and movement, which can be easily monitored using accelerometers, but there hasn’t yet been an elegant solution for logging food consumption, a far greater factor in overall health. We’ve been mostly limited to elegant text-input food journals, which feel tedious and imprecise next to the dynamic graphs produced by fitness trackers. The Escali kitchen scale aims to take some of the tedium out of that process. It also integrates with the UP by Jawbone system, so nutrition information collected from the scale can be used for better body tracking all around. Available for $99.95.
July 22, 2014
mitsubishi mr wx61y refrigerator beige

Supercooling Freezers—The Future of Refrigerators?

Manufacturers have added carbonation systems, fancy ice-makers, and video monitors to refrigerators, but the general idea of having two temperatures for the freezer and main unit have generally stayed the same for decades. Now, Mitsubishi has announced a line of refrigerators, including the MR-WX71Y and MR-WX61Y, that use a process called supercooling to chill food to three degrees below freezing. Available only in Japan, beginning August 2014, for $4,100.
July 21, 2014
bluesound pulse wifi speaker white

Wi-Fi Speaker System for Better Home Music Listening

Bluetooth speakers are fantastic for using outdoors or while traveling, but the wireless format compresses the data so that sound quality gets diminished. For listening to high-quality music at home, a Wi-Fi system like the one from Bluesound is ideal. The Pulse connects to a home Wi-Fi network through a multi-step process of password entries and location designations, but once it’s set up, it will remember everything. Available for $700.
July 21, 2014
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