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The Wrap: 23 April

Games with bite

Trying to get your kids to brush their teeth? There’s already an app for that, but now a San Francisco team is bringing gaming to the toothbrush to achieve the same goal. How to fit a game screen onto such a skinny object, you might ask. Well, the Grush actually turns the toothbrush into the game controller, wirelessly sending information to iOS and Android games.


It’s also a bit Big Brother, with a cloud platform to store information about how long kids brush for and send that to their parents via an app. Spending two minutes on freshening the pearly whites may not be such a ridiculous prospect after all.

Palm payments

If you think contactless payment technology is scary, you won’t want to hear about Swedish venture Quixter, started by engineering student Fredrik Leifler. He’s created a palm reader with a difference, which scans a person’s unique vein pattern in their hand to enable a transaction in under five seconds. For added assurance, you do have to enter some digits from your phone number to make the payment happen.

Printing goes mini

If you think printing is an area of tech so boring there’s no room for innovation, the Mini Mobile project might make you think again. It takes its shape from the ink drop icon used on printers to show toner levels. It’s a pocket sized device that allows you to print from your smartphone on to different sized paper. Users run the printer over the page, connecting to their mobile device or laptop to send the information for printing.

Take a load off

Much of the time the weight we cart around in our laptop bag is added by the charger. FINsix has hit Kickstarter to try to change that with what it says is the world’s smallest adapter. It still packs 65 watts of charging and has a USB and single outlet plug. Now all Kiwi users need is an outlet adapter for user downunder.

Amanda Sachtleben is an Auckland writer and social media type, who's also Idealog's former tech editor and business journalist.

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