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January 15, 2009

More Tech Items for Travelers

Following up on her top five tech picks from this year's Consumer Electronics Show, Condé Nast Traveler Deputy News Editor Deborah Dunn gives us five more favorite tools for chronicling your next trip--and enjoying the ride.

TomTomPortable GPS devices seem to be getting better by the day, and TomTom's GO 740 Live is the latest addition to the increasingly competitive field. The most promising feature is the new Google search function, which means no longer depending on the Points of Interests stored in the TomTom database. Instead, you can now access the address and other pertinent information of any place listed on Google. What's more, the 740 has real-time updates on traffic and fuel prices, improved voice recognition, and a service called Map Share, which lets you swap routing tips and map changes with other TomTom users (tomtom.com; $500; available in spring or summer).

The three-year-old Slingbox, possibly the greatest tech innovation since DVR, allows you to watch any of the programs broadcast on your home television from your laptop--wherever you may be. As long as you have broadband Internet access, you'll never have to wait to see, say, the latest episode of Mad Men. The newer SlingPlayer Mobile software airs those TV shows on smartphones, including Blackberry Pearls, and come March it'll be fit for iPhones, Blackberrys, and several other kinds of smartphones. Best of all, the application lets you program your DVR remotely (slingmedia.com; $30).

Find three more top tech picks after the jump.

Sony just introduced a GPS-enabled hi-definition camcorder, HDR-XR52OV, that'll tag exact coordinates and map video clips. If it works as promised, you'll no longer have to spend a month organizing clips from your weeklong trip through Tuscany. The camcorder will also store up to 48 hours of high-def video and it takes 12 megapixel stills. (sony.com; $1,400; available in March).

ExilimThe newest of Casio's super-slim point-and-shoots, the Exilim EX-FC100, has several exceptional new features, most notably the ability to shoot 30 frames per second and then show all the pix in slow motion so you can choose the frame you like best. Just as clever, the camera records up to 25 frames before you press the shutter button, which is especially handy if you're taking wildlife photos or snapping dance performances, or anything else where the subjects don't act on cue ($400 from Amazon.com; available in March).

P7 A compact and elegant little multimedia player, iRiver's brand-new P7 has a crisp 4.3-inch touch-screen, 16 gigabytes of built-in memory, and an SD card slot for adding more memory. Most impressive, the company rep says the battery life should last for some 50 hours of audio playback and 7 hours of video. Too bad the rollout is still a ways off--it may not hit the shelves until the end of 2009 (click here for a product video; price has not been set yet).

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