Since starting this blog, I have come to realise some of the best new products are not coming from the big name brands. Instead, start-ups and smaller businesses are creating great looking and functional devices & luggage to rival the more established names.
To help them on their way from concept to the marketplace, these companies turn to crowd funding sites to get their idea off the ground. With such a huge selection currently on Indiegogo, I am running a week of specials, highlighting some of my favourite, available for backing now.
Travis the Translator
As a British person who enjoys travelling, one thing always shames me: the lack of languages I speak. I’m sure it is a cultural thing, but it still bothers me, and for this reason alone, I watch the booming digital translator market with eagerness.
Back in February, I received a polite and informative email from the Travis team on their new device and an invite to meet them at MWC, which I could not attend this year!
I read through their press kit and followed them across social media to learn more and was ready to post when I decided to do a week of “Indiegogo Specials”, and you can’t do that and not cover the Travis!
Now, I know I often stress the importance of the smartphone being the centre of our tech world. With the right app or add-on accessory, the smartphone can achieve pretty much anything. Yet the Travis, as a standalone device, has no need for your smartphone, and that is refreshingly welcome when you see what it delivers!
There are no stand-out buttons, instead, touch surface controls are activated by a tap or swipe. This gives the Travis a smooth and sleek pebble-like finish that fits easily in your pocket.
Despite the small dimensions, the Travis conceals tech that makes it a truly smart device.
Under the shell is a range of technology that makes using the Travis easy for all!
The battery can sit idle in standby mode for 7 days, but when in use, it can last for 12 hours in offline mode and up to 6 in online mode. Yes, you read that right, online. There is Wifi connectivity and a SIM card slot. The device can translate 20 languages in offline mode and a further 80 when online.
The small display screen is bright and clear to read, displaying the languages you currently have selected for translation and audio wavelength to demonstrate it is picking up your words.
For the Travis to recognise and translate your words, it incorporates noise cancelling and dynamic boost microphone and speaker, so it can work even in busy and crowded areas.
How it Works
The Travis delivers a near-instant translation for your selected language. It achieves this by utilising the quad-core processor and artificial intelligence. As you use the device more and more, the AI gains better voice recognition. Delivering translations within 2 seconds!
Travis also gives you 3 different methods in how it can be used:
1. Use built-in microphone & built-in speakers
This is the most common use for speaking to anyone on the street, at work, or at home. Travis hears what’s being said via its microphones, and clearly repeats what is said in another language via its speakers.
2. Use built-in microphones + earphones (wired/wireless)
This is great for meetings. Travis hears what is said via its built-in microphones, and repeats what is said in your ear via the wired/wireless earphones.
3. Use wired headset + wireless headset (standard Bluetooth or Airpods)
The perfect setting for private conversations. One of you has, for example, Travis in your pocket with a wired headset plugged in and the other person uses a wireless headset. Travis hears what is said via the headsets and translates it in the other person’s ear.
You can purchase Travis the Translator for $149 from Indiegogo.
There is also a Travis Business for $244. This model is the same as the standard but offers the additional function of sending text transcripts from your meetings in both your spoken language and the translation via email! With Travis, you can go global and speak local.
The team behind Travis are showing the translator off at The Next Web Conference in Amsterdam this week. Their tweet this morning about being moved was quite apt, given the tagline, “Meet the Game Changers”.