What the Tech: Tailgating tech
There was a time before tailgating where football fans walked straight from their car to the stadium gates to watch the game. Thankfully, we're past that primitive time.
There was a time before tailgating where football fans walked straight from their car to the stadium gates to watch the game. We couldn't watch other games and didn't really even know the scores from around the country unless the public address announcer told us at halftime.
Today, fans can watch a dozen games from the parking lot and follow any other game from around the league from their phone. Technology has certainly enhanced football Saturdays both at the game and in the home. If you're looking for some gadgets to take along on a fall Saturday, these gameday gadgets are the bomb.
1. iGrill2. This Bluetooth gadget keeps up with the cook time on anything you throw on the grill. It comes with 4 probes that you insert into chicken, burgers or steak. The probes monitor the internal temperature of the meat and notifies you when it's done. The gadget works together with an app. You enter what you're cooking and the app sets the ideal temperature for rare, medium or well done. There are individual settings for each probe meaning you can monitor the temperature on several cuts of meat and how you like them cooked. The iGrill 2 boasts a 150' range. When the temperature is 10 degrees away from its optimal temp, a notification is sent to any phone with the app. We tested the iGrill 2 on burgers, steak and chicken and all were cooked just right. The iGrill2 is around $100 for the unit and 4 probes. Additional probes can be purchased separately.
2. If you do go to the game there is no way your phone's battery will make it to overtime. A portable charger is a must-have gadget anytime but especially for events like a game where there are no outlets. RAV Power makes a line of portable chargers that, in our tests, charges multiple devices quickly. These come in different shapes and sizes and start at around $40. Ventev also makes a slim charger that's barely larger than a stack of 10 credit cards. The Ventev Powercell comes in two versions, one for iPhones/iPads and another with a USB for charging any non-Apple device. These are both around $45.
3. Flat screen TVs are flatter, thinner and more lightweight than ever. HDR TVs are bright enough now to watch in daylight. HDR stands for High Dynamic Range which displays a wider range of colors and a brighter look. The TVs can be set up with an antenna to pick up any games airing on network TV.
4. The Amazon Tap is a portable battery powered media hub similar to the Amazon Echo. The Tap is slightly smaller but can be taken anywhere. It has a 360-degree speaker for good sound no matter where you're sitting or standing. It also has dozens of 'skills'. It can give you sports updates, news and weather, there are also games such as College Football Trivia. The Tap, if connected to the internet over wifi will stream music and other media content for Amazon Prime members. It retails for $130 from Amazon.