Opinion Tech

Hidden Features of Your Tech Gadgets

You use your phone and many gadgets daily, but do you know all that they are capable of? These gadgets are smart and well worth the money. Get more of your money’s worth by finding the hidden features of your smartphones and hand-held devices.

Amazon’s digital book reader, Kindle, can do more than just load a book or magazine for you to read. Let’s say your eyes get tired from reading or you need to go to the store and don’t want to step away from your book. Press the “Aa” button and choose “turn on Text-to-Speech.” Kindle will then read the book to you. To turn it off, hit the “Aa” button and choose to turn the text-to-speech off. Keep in mind not every publisher allow this feature to be enabled.
Games can be played on Kindle. Get the games at the Kindle Store to download apps and games like Scrabble, Solitaire, and Monopoly.
The Amazon Kindle also allows web browsing. Keep in mind it only provides the most basic in browsing. If you want to check your email, then this works great.

-Another gadget you can browse the web is Nintendo Wii. Go to the Wii Store and choose the “Internet Channel” free app. Now you can search, browse, and click links. Do this with the Wiimote or attached a separate keyboard. With Wii you can also stream music. Use the Wii browser and go to finetune.com/wii and choose the option of creating your own radio station.

iPhone has a free app that can tell you your heart rate. Android phone also have a similar app, called Instant Heart Rate, available. The iPhone’s app is called Heart Fitness. When downloaded, follow the directions on where to put your finger and what light source to use. When it’s done, you will be shown your heart rate in beats per minute and a graph illustrating the heart rate.


Digital camcorders can be used as a better quality webcam for Skype. As long as the camcorder has a DV IN/OUT port and your computer has a firewire port or IEEE 1394 port, you are good to go. Connect the computer tot he camcorder with a firewire cable and the open up Skype. Click Options and “Video settings”. Choose “Select webcam” then “Default video device”. Try a test run and if everything is fine, start video chatting!

-Your old cellphone can give directions too. You do not need the latest smartphone to get you un-lost. Send a text saying “directions to (starting location) TO (destination)” to 466453. You will receive a text back that says step-by-step direction to your destination. Get directions, today’s weather, and movie listings this same way—all for free.

Useful Links: Convenient online calculator. Loading and running quickly, requires no installation on your computer.


Angelica Bee

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