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Four Great Gadgets You Didn’t Know You Needed (But You Do)

1. A Virtual Assistant

Every business owner needs an assistant, even if you’re not only the CEO, but also the sole employee. Priced to fit any budget and now packed with useful features that go beyond checking the weather and playing your favourite songs, today’s virtual assistants offer real value and utility. Apple’s newly-released HomePod works with your other Apple gadgets to set reminders and calendar appointments, read and send messages, and even answer calls that come in to your iPhone. For Android users and those who rely on Google’s suite of business services, Google Home is a seamless addition to your tech tools. For sheer utility, ease of use and breadth of options, the Amazon Echo is still the category leader. Alexa, the voice of the Echo, is ubiquitous in many homes and offices, and is now accessible through a suite of Echo-enabled devices from a variety of manufacturers.

2. Hushme

Hushme is a «personal acoustic device that protects speech privacy in open space environments». What the heck does that mean? Think of it like noise cancelling headphones, for your mouth. Billed as the world’s first mask for mobile phone users, Hushme allows you to chat on your mobile phone, without worrying about being overheard, or disturbing others nearby. As odd as it may look, the idea is very practical for those who work in busy, public environments such as airports, trains and coffee shops, or for open plan office spaces with limited privacy. As for how you choose to use the customizable voice masking tools that can make you sound like Darth Vader, among other options, that’s up to you.

3. nScan 915i Document Scanner

I know what you’re thinking: It’s 2018, who needs a scanner? You do. But not just any old scanner. You need this scanner. From restaurant bills and parking receipts, to the endless piles of invoices, packing slips, order forms, tax slips and Post-It notes, the average office is drowning in paperwork. And if you work from a home-based office, you’re likely storing twice the paper in half the space. Ditch the paper and digitize everything instead with three simple steps – scan, store, and shred. The cleverly designed nScan915i from Ambir Technologies is perfect for home offices and businesses alike. The standalone functionality and space-saving design allow it to go anywhere, with no computer or cables required. A wireless connection is all you need to scan and send to email, the cloud, your network, your mobile devices or PC, or even a USB.

4. DeskCycle

Low tech it may be, but that doesn’t make it any less ingenious. We’ve seen standing desks, treadmill desks, ene yoga ball desks, but the DeskCycle may be the most practical solution for anyone who struggles to fit fitness in around a demanding work schedule. Designed to fit inconspicuously under almost any desk, the portable pedal machine is ideal for space-challenged workplaces. Customizable pedal height and resistance levels can be adjusted for multiple users, or to increase the challenge level of your workday workout. And because even the busiest business owner can’t work all day, the DeskCycle can also be used while watching TV, playing video games, or any other time you are seated.