London Drugs Whistler Tech Conference Recap – Exciting New Products

Every fall, the top London Drugs Experts come together for an event where our vendors show off all the new exciting tech releases hitting store shelfs before the new year. This year’s event was held in the picturesque mountain village of Whistler BC. With over 60 vendors showcasing their goods, the show floor was packed with exciting and innovative products! From new cameras, TV’s, phones and audio equipment to gaming, and an abundant assortment of accessories too, there was something for everyone. We’ve highlighted some of the tech items that we found especially exciting and hope you will too!

  1. Kodak Smartphone camera accessories – Estimated arrival early November

Kodak was the name in photography once upon a time. So much so that in Quebec the term “Kodak” means camera. This was the company that invented the digital camera after all. They have drifted off since the transition to digital, but the good news is they are slowly making a comeback. Their new smartphone camera accessories help you get the most out of the camera in your cell phone. With a portrait light that connects directly to your phone, a mini tripod and multiple lens adapters, the possibilities to elevate your phone photography are endless. With a macro lens adapter allowing you to focus extremely close up, a fisheye adapter to provide a 170-degree field of view (including black corner vignette) and an ultra-wide lens adapter to add that little extra expanse to your image. Look for these to hit shelves at London Drugs sometime in November.

  1. Logixx Wireless QI Canvas Duo – Estimated arrival mid November

Logixx are quickly proving themselves as a smartphone accessory powerhouse. Their Peels Air Pods Case allows for infinite personalization, and have become very popular, as have their wireless charging accessories. New out on the market is their Wireless QI Canvas Duo. No longer will you be faced with the decision to take turns charging devices or buy multiple charging mats. The new Dual Charge Mat is sleek, modern and features two sides, allowing you to charge multiple devices at the same time. Now your watch and phone can charge in harmony. A great bedside accessory that will look sleek in any space.

  1. Logiix Wireless Suction Battery Pack – Available now

Logixx’s battery packs are practical solutions for those extended periods when charging isn’t an option. The suction battery pack sticks to the back of your phone and will charge it wirelessly. Building off feedback from their previous model, they have made the new version a little shorter, while still carrying the same power. This was done to allow camera usage while the phone is charging. A great way to make sure you can continue snapping and charging without worry, when previously your battery would be ready to give out.

  1. Nikon Golf Rangefinder – Available online / via special order in-store

Nikon have a long-storied history in optics. You might know Nikon primarily for their cameras and binoculars, but did you know they also make time-lapse, long term live cell imagery systems for medical research in addition to personal glasses? Nikon does many things and does them incredibly well, and this golf rangefinder is no exception. With 2 models available, you can be sure that avid golfer in your life can determine the distance to the pin accurately every time. Bonus: they are weatherproof, so those rainy days on the course are no problem.

 

  1. Polaroid Originals Lab Printer – Estimated arrival mid-November

Polaroid: the name speaks for itself. Instant colour positive images from a time when images lived in film canisters for days. Now imagine taking that selfie from your Instagram and printing it as a Polaroid. Imagine no more, as the new Polaroid Originals Lab Printer does exactly that. Just lay your phone on top with the image displayed on your screen, press the button, and instantly you have a Polaroid of the same image. Using the Polaroid Originals app on your phone, you can even add your own custom edits prior to printing. The design screams Polaroid, as it is styled in that classic blocky polaroid fashion. This printer is a must-have for anyone who truly loves the nostalgic and tangible experience of a Polaroid but doesn’t want to sacrifice the ease of smartphone photography.

  1. Arcade 1up GamesGolden Tee available now, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles  available for pre-order

Arcade 1Up is bringing the essence of the arcade back and into your home. Their freestanding and countertop models are reviving the arcade experience for a new generation. Back in the day, the original arcade games were a social experience where you engaged with friends. In a world where online gaming has become the norm, the rebirth of these classic arcades is being well received. This fall London Drugs will be adding to our Arcade 1Up offerings with two new classic titles: Golden Tee golf and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Keep an eye out for these on display in your local store between now and the end of November.

  1. Marshall Headphones – Available now

Marshall guitar amps are synonymous with rock and roll. The iconic nameplate plastered in the center of a large amp stack is legendary. With all the headphones on the market, something that stands out as unique is the Marshall headphone line. Offering excellent noise cancelling properties combined with exceptional audio quality, they are an option not to overlook. Add in the vintage styling with modern touches in all the right places, and you have an awesome pair of headphones that really stand out from the crowd.

  1. Sony PlayStation VR – Available now

VR isn’t anything new, but if you have been on the fence about getting on board, consider the Sony Playstation VR system. It comes in as a more affordable option when compared to many PC options on the market and is equipped with a decent library of games to enjoy. The headset fits comfortably, is easily adjustable and when combined with headphones, becomes a completely immersive playing experience. Following along on screen while others play is just as entertaining too. With titles such as Everybody’s Golf VR, Firewall Zero Hour, Tetris Effect, Gran Turismo Sport, and Astro Bot to name a few, the library of games available is continually growing, and includes something for everyone to enjoy.

  1. Wandrd Prvke Photography Backpack – Available online

Have you searched aimlessly for a camera bag that is both functional and looks good? That is the guiding principle behind everything Wandrd makes. Their bags are a great option for the traveller looking to have a fluid combination of fashion and function for their camera gear and personal items. The integrated camera cube makes removing all your camera equipment quick and simple, and transferring it from one bag to another a breeze. Take a look at the many options here.

 

This is just a small sampling of what was on display at our tech conference in Whistler. There is a lot more in-store that our LDExperts will be thrilled to tell you all about. Hopefully, this list made you as excited as we are about all the new products coming to store soon! Drop by any London Drugs location and speak to an LDExpert today, or visit our website to find the latest and greatest tech. What new tech products have you most excited this fall? Let us know in the comments below.

 

Ania B’s Road to the Junos with London Drugs

Last weekend we were invited to join a group of bloggers to attend the Canadian music awards. We got our first taste for the Junos when they were held in Calgary back in 2016. It was a really great year for Canadian music with performances from the Weekend and Dear Rouge to name a few highlights and it made us hungry for more. To top it off, when the invite comes from one of the event sponsors who also happens to be one of your favourite Canadian brands, you don’t think twice about accepting!

Starting the JUNOs Journey with London Drugs

London Drugs has been part of our journey for many many years now, before the blog even existed, as a destination for all our photo and tech needs. Fun fact: they are one of the few places in all of Canada that still develop film. As a big supporter of Canadian artists, London Drugs has always been one of our top destinations—together and individually for cameras, electronics, and music. I thought it only fitting that the gear we brought with us to the Junos weekend were some of our top essentials we can’t live without while travelling and for experiencing music.

“As a big supporter of Canadian artists, London Drugs has always been one of our top destinations, together, and individually, for cameras, electronics and music.”

 

In-Flight Tech Essentials

The weekend begun with a flight over to Vancouver and since we were already out west it was a quick one hour trip. Of course, no amount of travel is ever complete without a set of headphones—since we’re both on the latest iPhone X, those are always wireless. Over-ear wireless headphones are probably my favourite thing EVER right now. It’s like everything you love about that look without everything you used to dislike about it, i.e. the long cord that always got in your way.

Day One in Vancouver

From the airport we were whisked away to the brand new J.W. Marriott Parq Hotel, conveniently located next door to the arena where the Junos broadcast was going to happen just two days later. Until then we took in local restaurants (hotels own Honey Salt and La Pentola), a standup comedy night at Juno Fest, the Ready Player One activation downtown Vancouver (who went to see it this weekend?!) and even had some time to locate the Tacofino truck parked nearby!

A Platform for Canadian Artists

The Canadian arts are unfortunately cursed by being in such close proximity to the United States and often artists don’t get the credit they deserve because all our attention gets easily redirected to the south of the border. The Junos provide a platform for all Canadian music to find it’s voice and it was a great opportunity to learn more about it, discover the newest and most exciting talent, and reconnect with the ones that we’ve always loved.

“The Junos provide a platform for all Canadian music to find it’s voice and it was a great opportunity to learn more about it, discover the newest and most exciting talent, and reconnect with the ones that we’ve always loved.”

Michael Buble was the host of the evening and the Barenaked Ladies celebrated their induction to the Canadian Hall of Fame by performing their most loved ‘If I had a $1,000,000’ and ‘One Week‘ taking us all the way back to the best of the 90s! We had a chance to walk two red carpets over the course of our visit and experience the live broadcast of the awards themselves, along with being treated like total VIPs with dinners, parties and even a morning yoga session with Lululemon & DJ Felix Cartal (when in Rome)!

Appreciating Canadian Talent

As consumers of popular culture, it should be our responsibility to support local artists. Before he was a mega superstar Justin Bieber was also just a kid whose parents recorded YouTube videos in his home in Ontario. Without the support of their communities, artists are just people with creative hobbies. There is an unfortunate catch-22 associated with having to prove yourself outside of your home before getting the recognition you need to make a name for yourself.

As digital creators, we face this all the time—the understanding of how much work, sweat, and tears goes into making your dreams into reality puts things into perspective. We must appreciate the talents we have right here at home and nurture them so they continue providing us with inspiration and bring pride to the country as a whole, and it totally gives us bragging rights when talking about Canada on a global scale!

Lights! Camera! Junos!

Lights! Camera! Access! That was all I could think of when walking down the red carpet at this year’s Junos. Entertainment and news shows lined the walls of the tent as performers and producers answered questions and flaunted their designer looks. It’s always the biggest treat when you get to get an inside look at how our favourite shows are made.

TV is such a fascinating medium and the more I uncover it the more tangible it becomes. Who knows, maybe one day we’ll find ourselves on an all different side of the camera. Tyler was, of course, on camera duty for the whole thing, snapping photos as we made our way through the crowd, even spotting our fave ladies from the London Drugs team reporting live on all the action (you can see the full report on the London Drugs Twitter & Instagram pages).

Thank you to the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS) for hosting such an unforgettable weekend and London Drugs for always being our go-to for all things tech and music! xoxo

Our Junos gear: Defunc over ear bluetooth headphones, Marshall bluetooth portable speaker, Logiix battery pack + cable, Canon DSL 5D mark iv camera, iphone X, Sony a7rii camera, all available at LONDON DRUGS

For more of Ania B’s favourite Vancouver hotspots, visit her Vanouver City Guide and the travel category in the main menu.

Blog courtesy of Ania B

7 Tech Gadgets to Reduce Holiday Stress

With Christmas right around the corner… there’s no time to stress! The holiday season inspires joy, excitement, and family comfort. What’s not to love about spending quality time with the most important people in your life, sipping warm drinks by the fireplace and decorating your home?

Family relaxing over Christmas - London Drugs blog

Unfortunately, we can easily find ourselves feeling a little overwhelmed with office parties, gift exchanges, family reunions and our kids’ school events. No matter how many commitments are booked into your calendar, there never seems to be quite enough time to get anything done – let alone finish Christmas shopping!

Thankfully, we have the tech to help make everyone’s life just a little easier – including your own!

Get into the festive spirit this winter and check out the following 7 tech gadgets that are bound to eliminate some of your holiday stress, while also making great gifts for friends, coworkers and family!

Nest Learning Thermostat

Nest Learning Thermostat - London Drugs

A thermostat may seem like a strange gift to pick up for the holidays, but trust us, the Nest Learning Thermostat is well worth it. Particularly useful during the chilly Canadian winters, this remote-controlled tech gadget can be used right from your smartphone, tablet or laptop through WiFi connectivity. With energy-saving options, safety alerts, and automatic adjustments from your personal energy history, just think – no more coming home to a frigid home, and no more waking up in the middle of the night to adjust the heat!

iQ Keychain Power Bank

iQ Keychain Bank - London Drugs

A fantastic option for stocking stuffers, the IQ Keychain Power Bank is a necessity for busy, on-the-go people who use their portable technology on a day-to-day basis. The keychain feature makes this power bank easily accessible and always within reach when in need. For those days where you forget to charge your phone, or your laptop runs out of battery, simply plug into the IQ Keychain without the stress of finding an available power outlet in public.

TouCan Hands Free Can Opener

 

TouCan Hands Free Can Opener - London Drugs

Opening cans with faulty (and often painful!) can openers can be the bane of your existence, especially when in a hurry and with a hungry family to feed. Another great stocking stuffer option (perhaps for the cook in your life, or for anyone with joint pain) the TouCan Hands Free Can Opener makes opening cans of all shapes and sizes completely effortless. With just a push of the button, anyone can seamlessly prepare their meals, without the mess and frustration.

Belkin Wireless Charging Pad

Belkin Charging Pad - London Drugs

If you’ve been thinking about picking up a charging pad, now is the time! More than ever, we’re glued to our phones and tablets for personal as well as work use throughout the day, making it easy to run out of battery life. The hassle of finding (let alone de-tangling!) the large amount of mismatched chargers you need could give anyone a headache. Thankfully, the Belkin Wireless Charging Pad provides a quick solution to this everyday stress. After a long day at work, place your smartphone, tablet or powerbank (no need to remove any cases!) within the charging ring, and enjoy the luxury of cordless freedom.

Global Data SIM Card

 

Visiting family or friends over the holidays, and travelling outside of your designated carrier zone? Know anyone who travels frequently overseas, and could benefit from some extra coverage? Look no further! Pick up the AOW Global Data SIM Card for yourself or as a gift and enjoy 4G LTE access to over 90 countries across the globe. Choose from hourly plans, by day, or by storage, and pre-schedule before you leave. The Global Data SIM Card is compatible with any unlocked smartphone, and will not only save you the effort of finding secure WiFi, but allows you to stay connected with loved ones via apps without daunting roaming fees.

London Drugs Rechargeable Wine Opener

London Drugs Rechargable Wine Opener

If you don’t need one of these in your kitchen cupboard, guaranteed you know someone who does! Just like opening a can, grappling with a tricky cork can result in nicked fingers, compromised wine and most likely a bad mood. Avoid the fuss and save your energy with the London Drugs Rechargeable Wine Opener. This sleek electric opener can be easily recharged when needed, and makes a great gift for any wine connoisseur.

Ring Wi-Fi Video Doorbell

Ring Wi-Fi Doorbell - London Drugs

Ordered your Christmas gifts online and anxious for them to be delivered to your door? More often than not, you won’t be home mid-day to receive your parcels. With the Ring Wi-Fi Video Doorbell, there’s no need to rush home to see if your packages have arrived! With wide angled HD video and instant alerts straight to your phone, this futuristic doorbell can also act as a security monitor, alerting you of what’s going on outside without having to be at home! Great for families with children, the doorbell also offers a safe way for kids to see who’s at the door without having to answer it.

E3 2017 – Ubisoft

When E3 2017 is long in the past, history may determine that the strongest lineup at the show belonged to Ubisoft. Every game at the mega-publisher’s booth has the potential to be a smash hit, offering everything from high caliber gun play in the hills of Montana to a vast adventure in ancient Egypt. Ubisoft came to play at E3 2017, and there’s plenty to like in every single offering.

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Viruses – Our Tech Pros Can Help!

Almost every day we are warned about a virus making the rounds. Although it may seem that they spread independently from computer to computer, in fact they do not… they need people to spread, just like a cold. Viruses are like sneezes, except that the sneezes are emails. Innocently attached to an e-mail message, a virus does its damage by delivering its payload – a malicious piece of code – once it has reached the destination computer.

Computer Viruses

Here’s a quick primer on the different types of viruses, how they typically propagate, and what kind of damage they can do.

Simple Virus

This type of virus works by attaching itself to a program file, and is activated when you launch that program. The virus then takes control of your computer, attaches itself to another program file, and the cycle continues.

Encrypted Virus

Every virus is a piece of code, or a specific sequence of bytes. This sequence is known as a signature, and in an encrypted virus, this signature is scrambled, making it difficult for virus scanning software to detect.

Polymorphic Virus

As with the encrypted virus, creators of polymorphic viruses encrypt the virus’ signature. What makes this type of virus so difficult to detect, however, is that the decryption routine used to unscramble the encryption is also encrypted.

Macro Virus

Almost 75% of viruses reported today are macro viruses. They are easy to write and generally spread via programs that make use of macros, such as MS Word.

Trojan Horse

Like the legendary Trojan Horse of Greek mythology, this type of virus is actually a nasty program disguised as a benign program, like a screensaver. It does its damage when it is executed, typically stealing passwords or spreading viruses.

Worms

Unlike a true virus, which needs users (and usually their e-mail) to spread from computer to computer, a worm is self-propagating. Because of this, a worm can spread to hundreds of thousands of computers in an incredibly short time, doing substantial damage as it does. Not only can a worm attach itself to every email address in your MS Outlook address book, but it can also stick to certain types of files on your computer which, when opened, will start the whole propagation process again.

Our London Drugs Tech Pros Can Help!

Every London Drugs Computer Department has a CompTIA Certified A+ technician on hand to provide a full range of services to our customers.

Installation of:

  • Video cards
  • Sound cards
  • Hard Drives
  • Installing Floppy Drives
  • Network Cards
  • High Speed Internet Modems
  • Memory – RAM
  • CD Burners
  • CD Players
  • DVD Players

Also:

Our London Drugs Tech Pros can service any make or model of computer.

Please visit our store locator to find a LD Tech Pro near you.