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On the Horizon: Travel Gear

Perhaps the biggest news in 2010 will be the launch of the new Android smart phones, including a model from Archos, a leading manufacturer of portable media equipment and iPod alternatives. The phone is expected to make its debut late next year with a thin, four-inch touch screen, an easy-to-use interface, and video capability.

Next year may also be the time to invest in a new camera, whether it’s the pro-level Leica X1, which delivers the power of a digital SLR in a compact size, or Sony’s less expensive 2010 Cyber-shot TX1, which lets you scan its lens across a wide area for up to 10 seconds to get one panoramic photo.

Expect a flurry of portable devices (with new travel apps) that take advantage of social media programs: the recently launched pint-size Twitterpeek allows you to update your status and connect with others wherever you are.

There are also better navigation systems in the works: Come January, check out TomTom’s iPhone-GPS system car kits and Garmin’s nuLink data connection, which merges Google and white pages searching abilities with real-time airline, traffic, and weather updates. —Adam Baer


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