While the growth of musical technology is undoubtedly the most exciting it has ever been, there are a few – more primal – elements of the music experience that still don’t mix well with technology. Top of the list would be attending an outdoor festival, particularly one of the multi-day efforts during which people camp out in flimsy tents and (especially in Britain) struggle to avoid the pouring rain.
As anyone who is a regular festival-goer will attest, then, it’s not the best environment for easily locating your buddies. Most of the time we’re used to calling up a friend at the drop of a hat, and technology that enables you to pinpoint their exact GPS position via a swipe of your smartphone. That same smartphone, however, just doesn’t feel it is designed to endure a long weekend in a rainy field – adverse weather conditions and lack of decent recharging opportunities can swiftly turn that marvellous device into a particularly expensive brick.
That’s why the Booster Brolly – the new invention from the tech busybodies at UK telecoms company Vodafone – is such a welcome development. Looking for all the world like the sort of device Inspector Gadget might carry, this umbrella extends your signal while recharging your phone through a USB port in the handset (plus it has the handy added bonus of making sure you stay bone-dry too).
If you’re going to endure a festival in one of the rainier parts of the world, you could do a lot worse than to have one of these tucked under your arm. What about other handy festival gadgets – any budding inventors out there care to share your genius ideas?
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