Every year, a flurry of products hits the market hoping to be the next big thing. Many turn out to be duds, but some leave us wondering how we ever lived without them. Here are some of the most intriguing products to consider buying in the coming year. Some have been around for a little while and are beginning to gain more traction, while others have just been released. (Hint: Bluetooth technology will be pretty much everywhere in 2019.)
Prices and availability are subject to change.
RING VIDEO DOORBELL
Est. Price: $100 | Buy it from Best Buy
Want to be able to see who’s ringing the doorbell even when you’re not home? Now you can do that from your phone with a Wi-Fi-enabled video doorbell. There are various versions of this product for all budgets, and most include night vision so you can take pictures and video even in the dark, as well as two-way audio for communicating with visitors.
SONY EXTRA BASS WIRELESS NOISE-CANCELING HEADPHONES
Est. Price: $180 | Buy them from Best Buy
Anyone hoping Apple would bring back the headphone jack was disappointed when the company released its latest iPhones this year. These Bluetooth headphones connect without a cord and block out the rest of the world so you can enjoy your favorite tunes uninterrupted. They last up to 22 hours between charges.
STAINLESS-STEEL DRINKING STRAWS
Est. Price: $9 | Buy it from Amazon
With Starbucks, the state of California, and cities across the country banning plastic straws, now is the time to consider drinking straws made from other materials. Unlike their plastic counterparts, which can be deadly for marine animals when they end up in the ocean, stainless-steel straws can be used again and again. This set of eight (four straight, four bent) comes with brushes for cleaning, as well as silicone tips that feel more like a regular straw. They’re also dishwasher-safe.
PEBBY PET BALL
Est. Price: $189 | Buy it from Pebby
The Pebby Smart Ball is a remote-controlled ball with a built-in camera for monitoring and entertaining your pet while at work or anyplace else. With Wi-Fi and Bluetooth technology, you can use your phone to make the ball roll around the house for your pet to chase. You can also record videos and snap pictures from your desk at the office. The ball includes a built-in laser pointer to amuse cats and an auto-play function.
ANOVA SOUS-VIDE BLUETOOTH PRECISION COOKER
Est. Price: $90 | Buy it from Target
Sous-vide cooking has become a huge trend, especially among home chefs who struggle to cook food to exact temperatures. This handy gadget provides continuous temperature control, with the added bonus of Bluetooth connectivity. (Yes, there it is again.) The Anova Sous Vide Precision Cooker allows you to track your cooking from anywhere in the house and say goodbye to dry edges and rare centers. It can be used for vegetables, meat, fruit, and more.
AMAZON FIRE TV CUBE
Est. Price: $70 | Buy it on Amazon
This hands-free streaming media player features 4K support, for watching the latest ultra-HD content, and the Alexa voice assistant. Without getting off the couch or reaching for a remote, you can ask Alexa to turn on the TV, turn down the lights, or play whatever show or movie you want to watch. The latest 4K streaming box from rival Roku allows access to more content providers, but if you’re already in Amazon’s world, this is the better option, reviewers say — and it’s currently $10 cheaper.
ROCKETBOOK WAVE SMART NOTEBOOK
Est. Price: $21 | Buy it on Amazon
An idea that seems long overdue, this smart notebook instantly sends your notes to Google Drive, Dropbox, Evernote, Box, OneNote, Slack, or iCloud. Want to erase what you wrote? Pop the notebook in the microwave, which erases the text and allows the notebook to be reused. Your family may think you’re crazy nuking a notebook, but consider yourself environmentally friendly, saving all that paper.
ONIKUMA K5 GAMING HEADSET
Est. Price: $30 | Buy it on Amazon
For hardcore gamers everywhere, these headphones are designed to deliver a truly professional and immersive gaming experience on a budget. The surround-sound technology maximizes clarity. There’s also a noise-canceling mic. The headset works with a variety of systems, including Nintendo Switch, PSP, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.
SAMSUNG QI WIRELESS CHARGING STAND
Est. Price: $45 | Buy it on Amazon
Say good riddance to unsightly clusters of cords with this useful accessory, which is designed to wirelessly charge smartphones and other Qi-compatible devices — no need for a wall charger or USB port. It works with the Samsung Galaxy S8, S8+, and Note 8, as well as the iPhone 8, 8 Plus, and iPhone X.
Est. Price: $30 | Buy it from Amazon
Are you still texting with your bare hands while sitting on a ski lift or walking down a cold city street? It’s time to get some touchscreen gloves. These days, they’re not all cheap knit gloves with contrasting fingertips that put their function front and center. These are highly regarded leather driving gloves with cashmere lining.
RECHARGEABLE/REUSABLE HAND WARMER
Est. Price: $25 | Buy it on Amazon
With a “teeth-chattering cold” winter predicted for 2019, mere gloves may not do the trick. A rechargeable, reusable hand warmer can be carried in your pocket or a bag for hiking, camping, skiing, and more. It features three temperature settings ranging from 107 to 131 degrees and promises to warm your hand in three seconds.
RECYCLED PLASTIC FURNITURE
Est. Price: $141 | Buy it from Hayneedle
Eco-conscious living is top of mind for many people these days. Creative minds have developed ways to reuse the mountains of plastic waste we all generate, and one of the coolest uses is stylish furniture made from recycled material for a backyard or patio. Used bottles and other plastics are cleaned and processed to create incredibly durable products that resemble wood.
SILICONE FOOD STORAGE BAGS
Est. Price: $18 | Buy it from Amazon
Silicone food storage bags help cut back on plastic use and waste. These nifty little bags eliminate the need to buy plastic bags to store food. Not only can they be used repeatedly, they are also heat- and cold-resistant and lack BPA, PVC, and other harmful chemicals.
SOUNDBOT WATERPROOF BLUETOOTH SPEAKER
Est. Price: $15 | Buy it on Amazon
Docking a mobile device on a portable speaker is so 10 years ago. You can take the party anywhere with this waterproof Bluetooth speaker and keep your phone on your person. The speaker boasts universal compatibility, a built-in mic, and high-definition audio with wireless connectivity.
Est. Price: $23 | Buy it from Amazon
With "green energy" becoming such a popular buzzword, it was only a matter of time before someone developed solar-powered chargers. Ideal for hiking, camping trips, and other outdoor activities, many can be purchased for about $25 or less.
Est. Price: $40 | Buy it on Amazon
With a Bluetooth stereo headset inside a soft acrylic beanie, you can keep your head warm and listen to music without headphones getting in the way of running, skiing, skating, and other cold-weather activities. This winter cap pairs with cellphones, tablets, and other devices and comes in nearly every color under the sun.
CELLPHONE TRIPOD WITH REMOTE CONTROL
Est. Price: $15 | Buy it on Amazon
A handy gadget that can seriously step up your cellphone photography game, this flexible tripod lets you set up your phone pretty much anywhere and use a Bluetooth remote to snap a photo. Not only is it ideal for capturing perfect selfies — an outstretched arm just doesn’t cut it anymore — it’s great for group photos.
Est. Price: $30 | Buy it from Amazon
Yet another product aimed at reducing waste, the ECOlunchbox is an emerging product designed to replace plastic food containers. The basic stainless-steel box is 100 percent plastic-free and therefore lacks the chemicals found in plastic, such as BPA