The connected traveller: Passage to Perth

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This month, we look at the new Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra with generative AI, the trendy Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses, and the Eufy SmartTrack Link for your luggage. Plus, unlimited data and a dinky, clip-on power bank.

By: Nafisa Akabor

Samsung S24 Ultra 

The new Samsung S24 Ultra has levelled up. It is the first smartphone to feature on-device generative AI. If you’re a frequent traveller, the new Live Translate feature lets you call any phone, including a landline, and translates the conversation in real-time in up to 13 languages.

For in-person conversations, simply use the Interpreter app. All these features are built-in; no Wi-Fi or data required. The S24 Ultra is the most powerful Android yet. Price: R32 500. 

Ray-Ban Meta 

The Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses are the hottest new travel accessory. Share a unique perspective when trying new adventures, cuisines or panoramic views. It shoots in HD, takes 12MP stills, supports voice commands, and lets you listen to music and take calls. Send messages via WhatsApp or livestream on Instagram. It comes in regular lenses or sunglasses. Grab a pair on a trip aboard. From: $/€/£299. 

Eufy SmartTrack Link 

If you want a cost-effective way to track luggage, consider the Eufy SmartTrack Link. It also pairs on Apple’s Find My app and pings with all iPhones globally for accurate location on your bags during transit. Left-behind alerts, a loud alarm, share with friends and family, plus water resistance features make it compelling. Price: R395.  

Next Travel (e)SIM 

South Africans traveling abroad looking for connectivity can try Next Travel Connect. It offers either a physical SIM or eSIM free with a purchase of its packages. It includes unlimited data, local voice calls, free incoming calls and 24/7 WhatsApp support. Pricing is R349 for five days; R449 for 10 days; and up to R749 for 30 days. Visit: nextsim.travel 

Anker Nano power bank 

Anker has come out with a dinky nano power bank, perfectly suited for travellers with limited carry-on space. Say goodbye to cables with a clip-on, foldable USB-C port and 22.5W of fast charging. There’s a separate port to recharge, and it has a light indicator for charge levels. A 5000mAh capacity means it weighs a mere 100g. Price: R995. 

Passage To Perth 

South African Airways has reintroduced direct flights to Perth, Australia and bookings are now open. After an absence brought on by the pandemic, this popular 11-hour route returns three times a week, starting 28 April. Perth, known as the “most isolated big city” in the world, may just be the ideal remote city escape.

It is packed with things to do, such as exploring the art scene, museum- and market-hopping, hiking, or just taking in the skyscrapers in the CBD. There’s no shortage of beach activities, entertainment, wildlife, or visiting Penguin Island, a mere 45 minutes away. If you plan it right, you may even catch your favourite band on tour. NB: South African passport holders require a visa for Australia. 

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