It’s been a big year for consumer tech with plenty of cool devices released in 2015. And most of them have come across the Tech Guide desk. So what are the standout products of the year?
We’re taking a look back at the products we’ve reviewed this year and have picked the top three from the main categories.
1. iPHONE 6S
Apple latest device didn’t put a foot wrong and, despite having the same look and feel as the iPhone 6, it did introduce a number of new features including 3D Touch and Live Photos.
2. SAMSUNG GALAXY NOTE5
Samsung’s latest powerhouse smartphone not only offered a larger screen but also a more powerful processor and even more versatility with the S Pen.
3. SONY XPERIA Z5
Sony continues the high quality and durability of the Xperia range. It’s still waterproof, still has a great design and has arguably the best camera you can find on a smartphone.
1. SONY XPERIA Z4
Sony’s Xperia Z4 is thin and light and offers excellent performance so it can be used for work or play. It has excellent battery life is waterproof and includes the same screen technology as the Sony Bravia TVs.
2. IPAD PRO
The largest iPad is also the best. Apple’s new 12.9-inch iPad Pro has computer-like performance, a gorgeous display, excellent speakers and the ability to write and draw on the screen with the Apple Pencil.
3. MICROSOFT SURFACE PRO 4
Microsoft’s Surface Pro 4 is powerful enough to replace your laptop with the speed and connectivity that other tablets just don’t offer. The included Surface Pen also adds another dimension to the many ways the device can be used.
1. APPLE WATCH
The Apple Watch has brought the iPhone to your wrist and has been a device that has energised the smartwatch market. And with thousands of apps already available, it’s no wonder it’s so popular.
2. SAMSUNG GEAR S2
Samsung’s latest version of the smartwatch has a circular screen and a rotating bezel that makes it easy to navigate the features and apps.
3. HUAWEI WATCH
Huawei Watch went for the premium look and feel and delivered a device that was functional and stylish and that delivered your notifications and information without being annoying.
The 12-inch MacBook Pro is one of Apple’s finest achievements. It combines cutting-edge engineering and technology with incredible design and excellent performance.
2. HP STAR WARS LAPTOP
HP’s Star Wars laptop is a standout for fans and was created in partnership with Disney and Lucasfilm and features logos and designs for the film on the outside and special wallpapers and galleries on the inside.
Now all iMacs will include a Retina Display to make the already excellent desktop computer even better. And the iMac also comes with Apple latest wireless accessories – the Magic Keyboard and either the Magic Mouse 2 and Magic Trackpad 2.
1. GARMIN VIVOSMART HR
Garmin is a leader in GPS and wireless sports devices and its vivosmart HR activity tracker can monitor your heart rate and your daily activities and deliver notifications from your smartphone.
2. FITBIT CHARGE HR
FitBit has become the default name for activity trackers for many customers and the Charge HR gives you a display on your wrist to track your progress and an excellent companion app to manage all of your data.
3. GARMIN FENIX 3
The Garmin Fenix 3 multisport GPS sportwatch is an allrounder that can suit athletes and adventurers and anyone who loves the outdoors.
1. SONOS PLAY:5
Sonos somehow managed to managed to make a good speaker even better with the latest Play:5 and the new Trueplay features on the app can make it sound even better still in your home.
2. BOSE SOUNDTOUCH10
The Bose SoundTouch10 is the new entry level wireless speaker and has both Bluetooth and wi-fi onboard to enjoy your favourite songs or radio stations anywhere in your home.
3. PLANTRONICS BACKBEAT SENSE HEADPHONES
The Plantronics BackBeat Sense headphones have the convenience of wireless connection along with a number of features that make listening to your music a pleasure.
1. GOPRO HERO4 SESSIONS
With the Hero4 Sessions, GoPro has shoehorned the features the brand is known and loved for into the smaller square chassis with a waterproof design that doesn’t require a separate bulky housing.
2. CANON POWERSHOT SX710 HS
The Canon PowerShot SX710 HS is an excellent camera that can suit photographers of all skill levels. And with features like built-in wi-fi it makes it even more versatile.
The 360Fly is the action camera that can shoot 360-degree videos and literally capture every angle whether you’re out having fun or away on holiday in an exotic location.
1. LG 4K OLED
LG’s latest OLED technology combined with the 4K Ultra High Definition resolution makes the new range a standout and provides an incredible home viewing experience.
2. SAMSUNG SERIES 9 SUHD TV
The secret sauce of the Samsung Series 9 TV is nano-crystal technology that improves colour, brightness, contrast and black levels.
3. SONY BRAVIA X90C 4K UHD TV
The Sony X90C looks great even when it’s turned off thanks to its slender 4.9mm thickness but when you do switch it on – wow! It has amazing 4K picture quality and excellent sound.
1. STAR WARS PLAYSTATION 4
The Star Wars themes PS4 has an image of Darth Vader on the side and repeated etchings of the Star Wars logo on the console. The Force is strong with this one.
2. CALL OF DUTY: BLACK OPS III
The latest Call of Duty games delivers what fans of the franchise have come to expect – a solid campaign and an amazing online experience.
3. STAR WARS BATTLEFRONT
Get into the action on some of the most famous battles of the Star Wars universe including action from the latest film The Force Awakens.
1. BB8 BY SPHERO
The loveable ball-shaped droid of the new Star Wars film The Force Awakens was a huge hit when it was released by Sphero who turned the on-screen magic into reality.
2. ZOOMR HOVERBOARD
The ZoomR self balancing scooter was one of the first optimised for Australian users and offers performance that is clearly superior to the cheaper models flooding the market.
3. DJI PHANTOM 3 PROFESSIONAL DRONE
The DJI Phantom got even better this year with improved flight technology as well as a 4K camera to capture breathtaking photos and videos.