10 Top Tech Gadgets

From the 'Book of Tens'

By Published on .

The Tesla Roadster is not your typical 'gadget.'
The Tesla Roadster is not your typical 'gadget.'
1 Tesla Roadster, $100,000
OK, so it's not your typical gears-in-a-box kind of gadget, but this electric sports car is definitely high-tech. The two-seater convertible can reach 60 mph in four seconds and last 250 miles before recharge. The first 100-car run sold out though its debut is a year away. A five-passenger model is in the works for 2009 and will be priced between $50,000 and $75,000.

2 Zune, $249
While the Zune has gotten mixed reviews, it does offer an alternative to the iPod. And we love it for its possibilities. The thinking behind its "social" marketing—to share tracks, DJ to a crowd of other "Zuners" and download music at Wi-Fi hot spots—is appealing, though the actual tech abilities might not be there yet. Also, having to use MS points to buy songs smacks of dictatorship.

3 Slingbox Pro, $249
As if the Slingbox wasn't cool enough, the Pro model adds high definition and the ability to hook up to four AV sources. The basic premise of place- and time-shifted TV watching remains unchanged, with the ability to watch via a computer or Windows-enabled mobile device anytime, anywhere. One bummer: A necessary HD cord is not included, and costs an extra $50.

4 Blackberry Pearl, $199.99 with Verizon contract
Apologies to the gearheads, but this has to be said: The Pearl is so pretty! And small. And smart. BlackBerry drops the scrollwheel in favor of a flexible trackball and includes music and video capabilities in this new model targeted at consumers as well as business users. BlackBerry also departs from its norm by using the RIM SureType system (two letters per key) instead of a QWERTY keyboard.

5 PS3 and Wii, $599 and $249
Hey, what can we say? We're just not ready to call a winner among the next-generation video-game consoles. These two are so different, you'll likely gravitate to one or the other—but we want both! The PS3 offers high definition—including a Blu-ray player—for never-seen-before game play and great movie watching. On the other hand, the Wii's motion-sensitive controller spurs get-up-and-move fun.

6 Apple iTV, $299
What would a top-tech list be without an Apple product? We almost went with the second-generation Nano (its eye-popping colors are nifty), but you've seen that before. So we chose iTV, not yet on the market, and maybe not even by that name, but promised for Q1. With the ability to move TV shows and movies from computer to TV, plus hints about "going beyond streaming video," it tops techies' lists.

7 Navman iCN 750, $699
Portable and personal GPS systems came of age—and down in price—this year. But this Navman offers a great innovation: a camera inside that maps the location of photos you take. Imagine being able to find that great hiking trail again, or that fab wine bar (after one too many), or that funky jacket you saw at a store downtown. Almost as cool: Fans and friends share their photo finds at the NavPix website.

8 Nabaztag, around $150
Sure, it's weird, but it's also fun. Nabaztag ("rabbit" in Armenian) comes to us from those wacky French. The white, plastic rabbit with moving ear-tennae is Wi-Fi-enabled and will alert you to e-mail, news, weather and stock reports, as well as play music, teach you French, light up in an array of colors and even make friends with fellow Nabaztags.

9 Sony Reader, $349
The beginning of the end for books? Probably not anytime soon, but the Reader is a good start. This Sony gadget holds as many as 80 average-size books, and one battery charge will last through 25 of them. Download digital books like Michael Chrichton's "Next" and David Baldacci's "The Collectors" at Sony's Ebooks Connect store at a 25% discount. Stop killing trees already, would ya?

10 Sooloos, starts at $12,000
We can dream right? We'd like to point out—via Sooloos' creators—that "it's not a product; it's a system." OK, whatever. This "system" is amazing. A flat-panel touch-screen serves as gateway to your music collection. Did we mention it comes pre-loaded with all your music? The system also offers suggestions from a panel of music critics and composers. OK, OK, we said it was a dream.
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