Spring is here and that doesn’t just mean rain, flowers and baby critters — a flood of new high-tech gadgets will be hitting store shelves this season.
Remember the Consumer Electronics Show 2015, Mobile World Congress 2015 and that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) Spring Forward event? There was a ton of cool gear previewed at those shows. Now that March is winding down, you will soon be able to actually buy some of that stuff.
We’ve put together a gallery of six of the most highly anticipated gadgets that will finally be released this spring — including one bonus gadget that may not have the benefit of the hype surrounding devices like the Apple Watch, but still scores big points for looking like something from 10 years in the future.
6 Cool Gadgets Arriving This Spring: Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
It’s pretty much a given that Samsung Electronics’ (OTCMKTS:SSNLF) Galaxy S6 will be the best-selling Android smartphone of 2015. And Samsung has upped its design game, finally ditching the tacky plastic in favor of a premium metal and glass look.
It’s not the Galaxy S6 release that we’re excited about though — it’s the Galaxy S6 Edge that’s generating the buzz.
Samsung’s curved screen flagship doesn’t just look slicker than just about any other smartphone out there, the dual edge displays operate independently from the main screen. That lets the Galaxy S6 Edge pull off neat tricks like displaying date, time and weather on one side with the main screen off to minimize battery use.
Pre-orders should be going up any day now for both new Samsung smartphones, with an expected release date of April 10.
6 Cool Gadgets Arriving This Spring: Apple MacBook
Like many other MacBook Air fans, I was disappointed that Apple chose to stick with the 2010 vintage low-resolution screen this year and instead give the long-overdue Retina display to the new MacBook.
At the same time, I’m intrigued to see just how well this new ultra-slim new Apple notebook sells.
If you have at least $1,299 to spare, don’t mind a laptop with only a single multi-purpose port or have a hankering for a gold finish to match your iPhone, the all new MacBook goes on sale starting April 10.
6 Cool Gadgets Arriving This Spring: HTC One M9
While Samsung sells the most Android smartphones, not all Android fans are also fans of Samsung’s gear.
The HTC One series has never matched Samsung’s Galaxy level of sales, but for several years now the HTC One has provided a welcome Android flagship alternative. Known for smartphone design that rivals Apple’s, premium materials with extensive use of aluminum and innovative features like its front-facing stereo BoomSound speakers, the HTC One is always a big deal.
Last year’s One M8 was an excellent smartphone, but the dual lens Ultra Pixel camera was a weak point.
At Mobile World Congress 2015, HTC took the wraps off the One M9. It’s unmistakably part of the One series — HTC didn’t change the external design much other than to make the aluminum finish a little less slippery — but the controversial camera has been replaced with a traditional, 20MP model.
The new CPU is Qualcomm, Inc.’s (NASDAQ:QCOM) powerful new Snapdragon 810, making this smartphone a performance beast.
The HTC One M9 should hit U.S. carriers on April 10, although HTC itself appears to be offering it, unlocked at $649, starting at midnight on March 27.
April 10 is really starting to fill up …
6 Cool Gadgets Arriving This Spring: Pebble Time
Even though it’s not backed by one of the consumer electronics giants, independent Pebble has been the one to beat when it comes to smartwatch popularity.
The original Pebble broke Kickstarter funding records and with the addition of the more upscale Pebble Steel version, sold more than 1 million units in 2014.
With competition heating up in the smartwatch market, Pebble introduced a new model. The Pebble Time — which is expected to start shipping in May — has the same class-leading seven-day battery life, but now features a new color display, a new timeline interface and voice input.
At $199 ($299 for the Pebble Time Steel), it costs less than the cheapest Apple Watch and offers both iOS and Android compatibility.
6 Cool Gadgets Arriving This Spring: Apple Watch
This is the big one, the device that everyone has been waiting for, what Apple hopes will be the coolest of cool gadgets. It was subject to months of rumors, a September 2014 preview and an official launch at the March 9 Spring Forward event.
With prices ranging from $349 to $17,000, Apple’s entry into the smartwatch race is a bold one. Depending on how consumers react to the premium pricing and the need to have an iPhone to use it, it has the potential to be a runaway hit or a rare flop for the company.
The Apple Watch goes on sale April 24, with pre-orders starting — you guessed it — April 10.
6 Cool Gadgets Arriving This Spring: OM/One
Finally, a futuristic oddball of a gadget, but one with a cool factor that’s tough to beat.
Bluetooth speakers are a hot accessory, with even Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) getting in on the act with its Echo wireless speaker/personal digital assistant.
Futuristic as the Amazon Echo is, it’s got nothing on the OM/One.
This Bluetooth speaker isn’t just wireless, it’s touchless. As in it makes no physical contact with anything. The OM/One is a 3.6-inch diameter Bluetooth speaker that magnetically levitates nearly an inch above its base.
The OM/One promises high-quality audio and 12-hour battery life, but let’s face it, sound quality is not why you’re paying $199 for this little speaker. You want it because it’s a speaker that floats in mid-air.
You can buy the “world’s first levitating Bluetooth speaker” in April or May.
As of this writing, Brad Moon did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.