For many tech gadgets, 2015 was a year of refinement rather than revolution. HTC, LG and Apple made solid -- but incremental -- improvements to their smartphone lines. Smartwatch makers fixed some of the worst bugs, but forgot about others. Laptop manufacturers released faster models with slightly better battery life, but PC sales continued to decline.
That said, a handful of 2015 tech products stand out in an otherwise routine year. At SpecOut, we poured over the last 12 months to pick 10 products with clear innovations and strong reviews from the experts.
For each product, we'll highlight the key features that made the gadget stand apart in 2015.
Why it made the list: A solid early entry in the emerging virtual reality market
Most serious virtual reality sets will come out in 2016, but Samsung — in typical company fashion — jumped ahead of the pack with its Samsung Gear VR. The headset is powered by Facebook's Oculus, which means you'll have access to hundreds of apps and games from the get-go.
What's more, Gear VR includes motion sensing in the goggles themselves, not just the companion smartphone, allowing for more precise tracking and accurate movement than other early VR models.
Just make sure you have the right handset before snapping one up. Gear VR requires a Samsung smartphone, a little like the Apple Watch needs the iPhone. If nothing else, it's a great excuse to get your Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge.
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This organic and fair trade Kombucha home brewing kit is the perfect gift for your foodie friend who is also a health nut, because the benefits of drinking Kombucha are practically endless, like supporting digestion and the immune system.
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