My Tech Highlights Of 2020

Let’s get this out of the way, 2020 was a train wreck of a year that has affected all of us. And that’s included yours truly as I didn’t review as much tech as I am used to. Which is why I will not be doing the IT Nerd awards this year. But that doesn’t mean there wasn’t interesting tech to be had. Thus here’s a list of things that really caught my eye in 2020:

2020 Mazda CX-30 GT: Mazda hit it out of the park with the CX-30 GT. For less than $34K CDN, you’re getting a sub-compact SUV that is great on gas, has an interior to die for, a significant amount of tech, a power lift gate which is rare in this class of car, lots of space for your stuff, and a lot of power from the engine. The bottom line is that if you’re in the market for a sub-compact SUV, this is the one that you want to get. And to make it even more enticing, Mazda will have a version with their 2.5L turbo engine in it. I can’t wait to drive that once the world stops ending.

ASUS ZenWiFi AX (XT8) – With everyone working from home, good WiFi is a must. That’s why the ASUS ZenWiFi AX (XT8) is on this list as I’ve been using it for months and it has given me easy to set up and trouble free and secure WiFi that supports up to WiFi 6. The only thing that may be a downside is the price as it’s not cheap. But if you want near bullet proof WiFi, this is the way to go. Though ASUS also makes the ASUS ZenWiFi AC (CT8) which gives you 802.11ac WiFi that is just as bullet proof at a lower price point.

Roku Streambar: Roku devices are already the top of the streaming devices food chain. But the Streambar is going take Roku to the next level as it upgrades “dumb” TVs to being “smart” TVs with great sound. And it gives “smart” TVs better sound. Plus it supports Apple HomeKit and AirPlay 2 which makes it very versatile. And all for under $200 CDN which makes this a very compelling purchase.

Apple HomePod Mini: When the HomePod first came out, it had great sound, but a price tag that I couldn’t justify. But at $119 CDN, the Apple HomePod Mini is easy to justify. It has great sound quality, it can act as a base for your HomeKit devices, and has a ton of party tricks like “Intercom” which broadcasts a voice message to one or more HomePods along with other Apple devices, and the U1 chip which allows you to point an iPhone 11 or 12 at it and transfer music and calls to it. As long as you are in the Apple ecosystem, this is a must get.

Apple MacBook Air With The M1 Processor: Apple goes 2 for 2 with their new M1 based Macs. I had the chance to test the new MacBook Air and this computer is FAST. It absolutely destroys anything with an Intel processor in any and every way. And the kicker is that this Mac will be the slowest Mac Apple will ever make. Which means that anything after this MacBook Air is going to be way faster. And I can’t wait for those Macs to come out.

Those are the things that really caught my eye in 2020. Hopefully in 2021 the world will become more normal and we’ll all be able to do the things that we’re used to doing. For me that includes reviewing the latest and coolest tech. Fingers crossed that happens.

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