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‘Star Trek’ Communicator Is A Reality

Onyx communicator device PHOTO COURTESY ONBEEP

Onyx communicator device PHOTO COURTESY ONBEEP

If you’re a Star Trek fan, at some point in your life you’ve probably fantasized about wearing a communicator and being able to talk to your crew (or friends) with the simple push of a button. I admit to having a Star Trek pin, but of course it doesn’t do anything — it’s just for decoration and the ooohs and ahhhs.

But an actual communicator is now a reality with OnBeep’s recently unveiled Onyx, a device you can use to talk to groups of people and clip to your clothing/purse.

Working via Bluetooth and using your iPhone or Android phone as a home base, you can communicate securely with up to 15 people at once (similar to a walkie-talkie). Think of it as a tiny, wearable speakerphone.

It’s not as tiny or as cool-looking as a Star Trek communicator, but it’s small and light enough that you’ll barely notice it, weighing just 46 grams and measuring a little more than two inches across.

It is perfect for law enforcement/first responders who can’t look down at a device to make a call or send a text.

Onyx requires iOS 7 or above or Android 4.1 or above. The battery will last approximately 12 hours, but varies depending on how much you actually use it, and it charges via micro-USB. You also can use Onyx with headphones, so that your conversations aren’t blaring out to the whole world, making it ideal in a noisy situation.

As far as the app goes, you’ll be able to see who has their device switched on and where those people are (if they opted into the geolocation feature). I can see this being useful in conjunction with a variety of businesses.

This communicator-type technology actually has been around for almost 20 years.

The best example is Nextel’s nationwide push-to-talk technology that basically turned cellphones into extremely long-range walkie-talkies. Our modern-day unlimited text and data plans pretty much killed it.

But recent alternatives WhatsApp and Apple’s iMessage recently added voice to these previously traditional texting-only apps.

You can preorder your Onyx now from OnBeep.com for $99 (or $195 for a pair) and it should arrive in December, just in time for Christmas.

Click Chick’s Mobile Apps of the Week: Thanksgiving Recipe Ideas

I can’t believe we’re in November already. That means Thanksgiving is right around the corner. There are a ton of recipe apps out there, but I wanted to mention a few of my favorites as you start your food shopping and preparations:

Epicurious: This app is good at giving you creative ideas on modifying Thanksgiving classics and has dedicated sections on turkey/gravy, Thanksgiving sides, stuffing, pies and vegetarian options.

Of course, this app gives you great ideas on your everyday food as well.

Bon Appetit: Here you’ll see all the gourmet options for turkey, sides, desserts and cocktails, with detailed instructions and mouthwatering photos. So all the different recipes aren’t so overwhelming, you can filter it down and view it by Classic menu or Southern-style, or the ultimate recipes for 2014.

Whole Foods Market Recipes: Since Whole Foods has become fairly popular here, I just wanted to point out this app as a great resource for trendy, creative, health-conscious or special-diet recipes.

This lists both main dishes and side dishes for vegetarian, wheat-free, dairy-free, raw, low-sugar or low sodium diets.

Gobble gobble!