Holiday 2017: Three tech gift ideas for ‘Star Wars’ fans

Sphero BB-9E, BB-8 and R2-D2 droids. — Handout via AFPSphero BB-9E, BB-8 and R2-D2 droids. — Handout via AFPNEW YORK, Dec 5 — As well as catching the upcoming episode of their favourite franchise in theatres this holiday, Star Wars fans can revel in all kinds of high-tech gadgetry themed on the movies. May the Force be with you this season!

Connected droids

After hitting the headlines in 2016, Sphero has added to its range of Star Wars droids with a new character, BB-9E. Like BB-8 and R2-D2, this compact connected robot is controlled by its owner via an app on their smartphone or tablet. Making the same kind of movements and noises as in the films, the droids bring to life characters from the franchise in an interactive way. Plus, with the “Watch With Me” feature, fans can view films from the Star Wars saga with BB-8, BB-9E and R2-D2 reacting by their side to certain scenes.

The Propel 74-Z Speeder Bike. — Handout via AFPThe Propel 74-Z Speeder Bike. — Handout via AFPMini-drones

Propel has brought to life three legendary flying machines from the Star Wars franchise in the form of mini-drones, which can be controlled via a smartphone and a remote. Choose between the T-65 X-Wing Starfighter, used by Rebel Alliance pilots including Luke Skywalker, the Tie Advanced X1 Starfighter, as used by the fearsome Darth Vader, and the Speeder Bike used by the Galactic Empire, seen in the famous chase scene in Return of the Jedi. These compact and lightweight drones can reach speeds of up to 55km/h. All are equipped with lasers to recreate battle scenes with no lasting damage to hardware. The drones also ship with a special-edition collector’s box with a light-up display case which plays the Star Wars theme when opened.

Samsung ‘Star Wars’ Limited Edition POWERbot Darth Vader and Stormtrooper models. — Handout via AFPSamsung ‘Star Wars’ Limited Edition POWERbot Darth Vader and Stormtrooper models. — Handout via AFPRobotic vacuum cleaners

Even more original, Samsung is hoping to clean up this holiday with two connected vacuum cleaners directly inspired by the Dark Side. Designed to resemble Darth Vader and a Stormtrooper, these special editions are part of the brand’s VR7000 robotic vacuum cleaner line. These autonomous cleaning devices have an advanced onboard navigation system, using sensors to detect and memorise the contours of a room in order to ensure thorough cleaning. Plus, cleaning can be launched and controlled remotely. The 10-watt device promises powerful suction. The Star Wars edition models also feature special sound effects.

Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi opens in US theatres December 15, 2017. — AFP-Relaxnews