Travel & Photography gadgets/services we tried in 2016

It was a cool winter morning when I took a cab to Gurgaon for an offroading event organized by JK Tyres. When I reached there, the event had already begun and as I walked towards the arena, I could see several mean looking jeeps navigating a tricky looking track. As I got closer, the true nature of the track revealed itself to me. There were strategic potholes (I am using potholes for the lack of a better word. I reality they were much much deeper than any potholes I have come across) to provide severe body/chasis twists, angled depressions, deep ditches, steep hills, and mud to test the vehicles' wadng power. The vehicles were indeed being put through some very tough tests. They had to have tyres that would support them through it.JK Tyre & Industries Ltd, pioneers of radial tyres in India, has recently launched its exclusive range of highly advanced multi-terrain tyres- RANGER. The vehicles that were navigating the tricky track were fitted with these sturdy tyres. And indeed the tyres were supporting the vehicles through all the tests they were being put through.I can say this because I drove the vehicles through the track myself, and throughout the drive, not once did I feel that the vehicle is about to veer off the course or out of control. And this is something because this was the first time I was trying offroading. Before this, I have only driven hatchbacks, though I have driven on some pretty rough roads.The fact that the tyres have exceptional grip was proven all through the track, whether it was while climbing out of the potholes, or while navidating the muddy ditch. I also noticed that the tyres didn't skid when I pressed the break very hard. Upon checking the specifications I noticed that the tyres are capable of decelerating from 100 to 0 kmph in 4 seconds, which is really fast.Here is what JK Tyres says in their release note:JK Tyre’s Ranger Series is designed to upgrade the overall driving experience of SUVs in India. Superior DUAL Tread Compound, in Ranger Series, provides maximum grip & control, to match the power and size of these vehicles. Ranger tyres will be available in two specialised applications, RANGER A/T -for all-terrain performance and Ranger H/T - for tarmac application. The tyres come in 10 sizes and therefore work best with a variety of SUVs available in the Indian market, viz., Audi Q-series Land Rover Freelander, Fortuner, Nissan X-trail, Terrano, Pajero, EcoSport, Duster, and many more.In fact, the two versions of the tyres come with some really great features. Check them out below:RANGER A/T1.       Excellent All Terrain Performanc2.       Low Noise and Long Life3.       Deeper Grooves for Supreme Grip4.       Tougher Sidewalls for Tough JourneysRANGER H/T1.       Exceptional Control and Stability2.       High Traction Strength on Wet Surface3.       Superior Grooves for Strong Wet Grip4.       Excellent Steering and Handling5.       Quieter Running at High SpeedsWith the Ranger series, JK Tyre aims to augment its presence in one of the fastest growing segments in the Indian auto industry i.e. the Sports Utility Vehicle segment. JK Tyre will export the new range of tyres to its international markets. And if I go by my experience with the tyres, I have a strong feeling that the Ranger series will prove to be highly successful. If I owned an SUV, I would have definitely considered getting it fitted with these tyres.

2016 has been very exciting journey as far as blogging is concerned. Due to personal reasons, I couldn't travel much and photography was also not happening. This year, I relied a lot on phone cameras to click some of the interesting moments I encountered during routine life. Last year I have been using Honor 5X as my person phone, but I also had an opportunity to try cameras in other phones launched in 2016. That's one of the main reasons of having lot of mobile clicks being published on Travellingcamera blog and especially photographs clicked with Honor 5X phone. 2016 was not only about phone cameras only, but I have tried various other products and services to share my personal views on this blog. There were many such experiences but we have handpicked some of the most memorable ones. 



Oppo F1s was another amazing phone which I loved a lot. I loved the looks of this phone and more than that the capabilities of it's front camera which is used for clicking selfies. If someone who thought so seriously about selfies, it's Oppo. I hardly selfie photographs, but after using Oppo, I have started taking selfies more frequently. 



Huawei P9 is another star device I used this year. Brilliant cameras with dual lens by Leica on rear side. I don't have words to express my feelings about this phone. DO check out the posts & photographs I have created with this phone. And I am sure you would love to have a phone like this. At the same time I observed that phone has heating issue if used for a longer period of time with 4G on or camera screen active. 


UE Boom Bluetooth Speaker  : What a brilliant product it is. I want to say only few words for it - brilliant sound quality, compact, good battery life and best companion for travel. You need to try it to believe it. 

Asus Zenpad 8.0 was sent to me by Asus as gift and my nephew loved it. And it's his personal device now. He uses this tab everyday and have sim in it. From games to photo editing apps, shopping apps to educational apps, Youtube for his cricket clips and lot more. He is making best use of this tablet and working fine. This tablet had come with audio cover, but that didn't last for a long time, although the sound quality was good. 

It was a cool winter morning when I took a cab to Gurgaon for an offroading event organized by JK Tyres. When I reached there, the event had already begun and as I walked towards the arena, I could see several mean looking jeeps navigating a tricky looking track. As I got closer, the true nature of the track revealed itself to me. There were strategic potholes (I am using potholes for the lack of a better word. I reality they were much much deeper than any potholes I have come across) to provide severe body/chasis twists, angled depressions, deep ditches, steep hills, and mud to test the vehicles' wadng power. The vehicles were indeed being put through some very tough tests. They had to have tyres that would support them through it.JK Tyre & Industries Ltd, pioneers of radial tyres in India, has recently launched its exclusive range of highly advanced multi-terrain tyres- RANGER. The vehicles that were navigating the tricky track were fitted with these sturdy tyres. And indeed the tyres were supporting the vehicles through all the tests they were being put through.I can say this because I drove the vehicles through the track myself, and throughout the drive, not once did I feel that the vehicle is about to veer off the course or out of control. And this is something because this was the first time I was trying offroading. Before this, I have only driven hatchbacks, though I have driven on some pretty rough roads.The fact that the tyres have exceptional grip was proven all through the track, whether it was while climbing out of the potholes, or while navidating the muddy ditch. I also noticed that the tyres didn't skid when I pressed the break very hard. Upon checking the specifications I noticed that the tyres are capable of decelerating from 100 to 0 kmph in 4 seconds, which is really fast.Here is what JK Tyres says in their release note:JK Tyre’s Ranger Series is designed to upgrade the overall driving experience of SUVs in India. Superior DUAL Tread Compound, in Ranger Series, provides maximum grip & control, to match the power and size of these vehicles. Ranger tyres will be available in two specialised applications, RANGER A/T -for all-terrain performance and Ranger H/T - for tarmac application. The tyres come in 10 sizes and therefore work best with a variety of SUVs available in the Indian market, viz., Audi Q-series Land Rover Freelander, Fortuner, Nissan X-trail, Terrano, Pajero, EcoSport, Duster, and many more.In fact, the two versions of the tyres come with some really great features. Check them out below:RANGER A/T1.       Excellent All Terrain Performanc2.       Low Noise and Long Life3.       Deeper Grooves for Supreme Grip4.       Tougher Sidewalls for Tough JourneysRANGER H/T1.       Exceptional Control and Stability2.       High Traction Strength on Wet Surface3.       Superior Grooves for Strong Wet Grip4.       Excellent Steering and Handling5.       Quieter Running at High SpeedsWith the Ranger series, JK Tyre aims to augment its presence in one of the fastest growing segments in the Indian auto industry i.e. the Sports Utility Vehicle segment. JK Tyre will export the new range of tyres to its international markets. And if I go by my experience with the tyres, I have a strong feeling that the Ranger series will prove to be highly successful. If I owned an SUV, I would have definitely considered getting it fitted with these tyres.

JKTyre's Ranger Series Vibha has been using JK Tyres for her car and she was invited for an off-roading event in Gurgaon to drive jeep with JKTyre's new series. It was a fun event and it was first time that she drove through some unusual tracks. 

Comparison of 2 popular entry level DSLRs of 2016 - Canon 1300D Vs Nikon D3300 : This post is probably one of the most popular gadget posts in 2016. This was compiled after lot of queries by viewers of our blog. This post still gets comments every week and has very high engagement. Do check out if you are planning to buy an entry level DSLR.


Asus Zenfone Max - A phone I gifted to my sister. Good battery, a bit bulky with average camera. At the cost this phone was available in 2016, lot of folks chose it over others. Battery life is certainly a big plus and that why people chose this phone. And better battery means, bulkier phone. So it's personal choice. It's sturdy as well, as my niece has dropped it many times but phone functions properly till date :).

Continuing our explorating of our favorite city Delhi with the new smartphone on the block - Honor 5c, our next stop was the park that offers different things to different people - Lodhi Gardens. For people in search of greenery, Lodhi Gardens offer trees of a wide variety and velvetty carpet-like lawns. For people in search of birds butterflies, there are 100s of species that can be spotted here. For health-freaks, there's an open gym and walking tracks. For people in search of history and architecture, there are four structures from the time of the Lodhis. For couple looking for some us-time, there is plenty on offer. Even for kids there are options of entertainment such as hillocks and swings.  If you happen to be at Lodhi Gardens early in the morning, you will not only see joggers and walkers, but also people doing various activities such as yoga, aerobics and other sports. come a little late and you will come across people walking various breeds of dogs. In the afternoon, the garden transforms into a lovers' paradise, and in the evening, families descend upon it to sit in the grass, to let their toddlers play, and to feed the geese and ducks. Talking about geese and ducks, there are some very friendly Geese and some reclusive ducks near the little artificial lake. The geese like to stay around people and on days when the birds are feeling extra-social, you can easily walk amongst them without having your feet pecked at by them. These geese are very popular with the people visiting the park and receive a lot of love in the form of bread crumbs and corn. The ducks though prefer to stay at the other end of the lake, or on the tiny island in the middle of the lake. They make it clear that they don't like people. Apart from these, there are other birds such as egrets, parrots, kingfishers, and a strange green bird, we don't know the name of. The monuments in the garden are Mohammad Shah's tomb, Sikandar Lodi's tomb, Shisha Gumbad, and Bada Gumbad, all built by the Lodhi's in the 15th century. The structures are interesting and the ceilings and walls have some interesting Mughal carvings. In the past we have visited Lodhi Gardens many times with our DSLR, but this time we were equipped only with a smartphone with a decent camera - Honor 5c, and were pretty pleased with the results. When photography is more about the composition, you do not necessarily need high-end equipment to achieve desirable results, unless you are doing a professional photo shoot. With its various offerings Lodhi Gardens are a photographer's dream come true especially on bright sunny days right after the monsoon rains. There are a lot of opportunities and a lot of moments worth capturing in these lawns. Imagine children running down the hillocks or a toddler learning to run. Imagine a flock of birds suddenly taking flight. Imagine the geese cleaning their feathers. Imagine an egret poised for a strike. Imagine an old man watching a family play from a distance. It is all there, all waiting to be captured, waiting to be eternalized. So what are you waiting for. Grab your camera or smartphone and go get that perfect shot!

Honor 5C is another phone camera which I tried the most. I planned specific outings with this camera and shot different places in Delhi (India Gate, Lodhi Garden, Connaught Place &  Agrasen ki Baoli) and a monsoon trip to Himalayas.  Instead of saying more about this phone and it's camera, I would encourage you to check mentioned links. 

Genie on Call - This is a service I loved the most, but it's sad to share that company is closed now. And I hope that they come again with more energy and much stronger commitment to serve people and help them handling stuff to save time. When my mom was not well, I had to take lot of leaves and after a point it was getting difficult to compromise work at office. Genie on Call helped me getting medicines from different parts of NCR at very nominal cost. 


I have been active user of Ola and Uber this year, and not sticking to Uber only. There is lot more to share on this, as it really changed the way I used to commute within the city and the kind of freedom these services provide. Stay tuned for something interesting on this topic and some tips to save with Ola and Uber.

Last but not the least, I loved the part when I had to share my experience of 5X phone camera with NDTV CellGURU. I have appeared a few times on TV, but this one was certainly very special.

To check out other products, services and gadgets, you need to check out the archive of 2016. 

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