Gadgets: Nothing to sneeze at! Desktop device monitors indoor air quality.

September 28, 2017 by Gregg Ellman, Gregg Ellman

I recently tested the Awair, Air Quality Monitor, which tracks the five key factors of air quality including chemicals such as volatile organic compounds, carbon dioxide, dust, humidity, and temperature. A lot of the chemicals are in standard products we use for cleaning, and beauty products.

An interesting fact Awair supplied via its website is that indoor air can be 5X more polluted than outdoor air. This can affect allergies, asthma, concentration, sleep and more. Who knew?

The Awair looks like an attractive desktop Bluetooth speaker with a walnut finish and measuring sensors inside. It won't produce music; instead, it measures the air quality and has a front display to show you the findings. There are different modes; use the one based on the area of the house you're testing to find out about allergies, sleeping, and even baby rooms.

The Awair must be connected to your Wi-Fi to work with the Awair app (iOS and Android). The app displays colored dots and information on what problems exist and where. You can view the current statistics along with the changes as it happens after you use the personalized recommendations.

One example is measuring how much dust is in a room, and I wasn't surprised to find several rooms in my house were dusty, especially those which we don't use as often. And as you know, dust is an allergy sufferer's worst enemy. The app offers recommendations on how to reduce the amount of dust.

A great Awair feature is the If This Then That (IFTTT), which allows it to talk with other devices. I have a humidifier that Awair can trigger since it's plugged into a smart plug; thus the changes to my room can be done seamlessly. That's just one example, but with smart home and voice assistants, the help is always there and always improving. $199.99


The bigger and better Apple makes the iOS devices, the more you need. Getting the device with the most storage space isn't always the most cost-efficient, but Kingston Digital has a great option, with more flexibility to combat the limited memory (and no removable memory) on the Apple device.

The recently released DataTraveler Bolt Duo has an Apple Lightning port on one end and a standard USB connector on the other. This enables connecting directly to Apple iPhones and iPads with the Lighting end and to a computer for transferring data on or off with the USB port.

Depending on which of the available sizes you choose, (32, 64 or 128GB) you can store up to 32,000 digital photos without taking up any memory on your iPhone or iPad. The devices have an intuitive Bolt app, which is simple to use for transferring from your device or a computer. When you want to view the contents on your portable player, the app is perfect for photos and videos. Images and videos can also be taken and directly stored on the Bolt.

Images you store on an iPhone can also use the Bolt as a backup, which is something (backing up) a majority of people do not do - until they find out the hard way that they should have.

The pocket-sized Bolt Duo has a protective rubber case, and a keyring makes it conveniently portable. One Bolt Duo isn't limited to a single iPhone or iPad. Use and share as you want, but you'll end up buying more.

It's not too early to put this on your holiday shopping list or even get one before the rush puts em' on back order. I'll guarantee you this will be a popular item. 32GB $59.99, 64GB $89.99, 128GB $119.99


SnowLizard's SLXtreme rugged and waterproof case for iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus are durable and efficient. They are built with a solar panel to power its battery case, which in turn powers your phone for185 percent extended power.

The solar panel is built into the case and absorbs the sun's power or indoor (incandescent) lighting for charging the battery to give the case and phone the shot of energy they need to keep running.

The integrated battery is a 4000mAh, which, as you would expect, powers a smartphone battery by 185 percent for extended power. If AC power is available go ahead and use it with the standard power cord, which comes with the device.

In addition to solar , you can charge the phone with a lightning connector and Micro USB recharging port. Four LED lights will indicate the charging status of the case, which should take a few hours. You won't have access to the headphone port (if your phone has one) while it's in the case but Bluetooth will work fine. As for durability; waterproof (IP68) rating and drop-proof (MIL-STD-810G) up to 6.6-ft.

I'd expect cases for the new iPhones to be announced soon but no definite date yet.

Available in Mossy Oak Break-Up Country Camo, Night Black, Safety Yellow and Signal Orange $149.99

Explore further: Review: Glitzy iPhone X aside, the iPhone 8 is fine for most

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