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TECH: Becoming a Digital Nomad: Must-have Travel Tech and Gadgets
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In this digital age in which we live, more and more people are able to leverage their skills and the latest technologies in order to be able to work remotely. Whether it be from home, the coffee shop or at the beach, location independent professionals (LIPs) or "digital nomads" utilise a number of different functional high-tech gadgets in order to sustain their nomadic lifestyle. Whether you are a web programmer, jet-setting business executive, or even just a travel enthusiast, these latest technologies will be able to help make your travelling experiences more smooth and enjoyable.   
Voltaic Off Grid Solar Power Backpack 
The Voltaic Off Grid Solar Backpack is an extremely functional and versitile backpack that has two solar panels mounted to the back that are waterproof, lightweight, and durable. The solar panel pocket is removable and can be attached to other bags while still charging your devices. 4 to 5 hours in the sun will charge a typical smart phone, while 1 hour in the sun should provide about 3 hours of talk time on your phone. There is an included battery that will efficiently store the solar energy for use anytime. When you are not in the sun, the battery can also be charged via a USB cable or AC travel charger making this backpack absolutely necessary for your electronics while camping or in remote areas. Besides charging your handheld electronic devices, it has 1,500 cubic inches of storage, a padded laptop sleeve, and a number of functional pockets. The backpack comes with a two year warranty on the bag and panel, and a one year warranty on the battery (USD 229). Also, check out Powerbag for a variety of recharning bags. 
SpareOne Mobile Phone 
Chances are that your smart phone can be used in most countries already, but the SpareOne Mobile Phone can be used anywhere in the world and is powered by one AA battery that can stay charged for 15 years! If you are actually using the phone, a single AA battery can give you 10 hours of talk time. Even without a SIM card, this phone will be able to contact emergency services with one push of a button and it also has a built in flashlight. While the phone might not be able to play Angry Birds, it could save your life.(USD 99)
Polaroid iM1836 Android Camera 
A lot of people are using their smart phone these days to capture their travel pictures. If you feel that your phone isn't producing high enough quality photos and you don't want to lug around an SLR camera, then check out the new Polaroid iM1836 Android Camera. This 18 megapixel camera will be the first Android-powered "smart camera" with inter-changable lenses and will be capable of professional quality images, 1080p HD video, built in peer to peer Wi-Fi, sharing via social media, and bluetooth connectivity. The lens of the camera will also be inter-changable. The phone was expected to be released in the first quarter of 2013 but has been delayed. No release date has been announced as of yet. (USD 399)
I'm Watch 
Tired of having to take your phone out of your pocket to check e-mail and look at texts? I'm Watch is the perfect solution! The self-proclaimed world's first "smartwatch" helps you to maximize the usage of your smartphone through bluetooth connectivity. Without having anything in your hands, you can look at e-mail and text messages, keep up to date in real time with all of your favourite social media outlets, read the news, check the weather, and much more. The watch is also a great fitness accessory as it can link up to heart rate monitors, pedometers and other sensors. Paired up with health and fitness applications, I'm Watch can help you maintain a healthy lifestyle. (USD 349)
Trackstick II  
Trackstick is a GPS device that keeps records of all your travels and explorations. You can mount it to your belt or anything at all that moves in order to track the exact path and time of your travel itinerary. It is ideal for all vehicles, cycling, hiking, ATVs, and photo geotagging. Trackstick II data can be uploaded to your computer quickly and easily where you can monitor the results through an integrated Google Earth view. (USD 149)
The 150-Country Auto Detecting Travel Adapter and Converter 
Try saying that name 10 times fast! This travel adapter and converter automatically detects incoming voltage and converts it to 120-volt AC power. It comes with plug adaptors for over 150 countries and has a built in USB port allowing you to charge two devices simultaneously. (USD 39) 
IoSafe Rugged Portale Hard Drive 
During your travels, especially for your year-long around the world trips, you are bound to accumulate gigabytes of multimedia. The best storage solution is to have portable external hard drives that you can plug and play into your netbook/laptop. Generally speaking, external hard drives can be delicate machines that aren't built for the rigors of travel. However, the ioSafe Rugged Portable Hard Drive is designed to military specifications and can handle some of the most extreme conditions. Available in aluminium and titanium, this tough hard drive is crush resistant up to 5000 pounds, can be submerged in 30 feet of water for up to three days, and can withstand falls from up to 20 feet. (Prices starting at USD 249 for 500gbs)  
If you fancy yourself the outdoor adventure type, then you might often find yourself in remote places looking for a clean source of water. The SteriPEN Traveler Portable UV Water Purifier eliminates 99.9% of bacteria and viruses that cause Traveller's Diarrhea. By stickng the UV pen in a glass of water for approximately 48 seconds, you can turn fresh water into clean purified drinking water. (Basic travel model USD 49)
Trackdot Luggage Tracker 
Travel with peace of mind by knowing where your luggage is at all times. The Trackdot Luggage Tracker is a small FAA compliant device that you put in your luggage, where it will continuously monitors cell networks to determine its location. Whilst on the plane, the luggage goes to sleep (while you don't) and wakes up after landing to send you a text/e-mail regarding its location which is hopefully in the same airport as you. (USD 59 for activation fee and USD 13 annual service fee)
One of the highest rated travel applications on the market is TripIt. Available on all major mobile platforms, Tripit helps you to organise all of your itineraries and travel details into a clear and simple master itinerary that syncs with your personal calendar. It also gives you useful information for your travel destinations such as maps and weather. These services are free but if you pay for the Pro version you can get a number of additional features such as mobile/e-mail alerts about flight delays and gate changes, VIP privileges with TripIt partners, and organises all of your frequent flier information in one place. (regular version is free, Pro version is USD 49 a year) 

By Justin Toy 
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