January 3, 2013
Socially conscious gadgets
By Natalia Manzocco, QMI Agency
It's the start of a brand-new year - time to turn over a new leaf and make positive changes to old habits. If you're looking to do more for worthy causes in 2013, an easy way to get off on the right foot is to take a close look at your buying habits. When you can't donate your time or extra cash to your favourite cause, choosing products with a conscience can be a great way to make a small difference.
Samsung's Galaxy Ace II X
The cause: RE*Generation program
Samsung's Galaxy Ace II X smartphone has a lot going for it, including Android's Ice Cream Sandwich platform, a 5MP camera, and a four-inch WGA touchscreen. Virgin Mobile has also made the Ace II X the flagship phone for their RE*Generation program, which has raised $2.2 million since 2008 for programs supporting homeless and at-risk youth across Canada. The non-profit will receive $15 for every unit sold. What could be smarter than giving back? It's $199 prepaid or $0 with a contract or tab at Virgin Mobile.
The cause: Your choice non-profit
Fashion fans who want to do a little good while revamping their closets will love A-Thread, an e-boutique that donates 5% of each sale to a non-profit group of the customer's choosing. Alongside fabulous dresses and jewelry are fun tech accessories like this sequined tablet case, which comes in three colours and features a cheetah-print lining. Fierce. Find it for $29 at a-thread.com.
Origami iPad cover
The cause: The Supply Education Group
Slate and Stylus began as a Kickstarter project, but the case company rose past thousands of similar startups by adding a socially conscious twist. Ten per cent of each of the company'ssales are donated to The Supply Education Group to build schools in Kenya. Only three products are available so far; our fave is the Origami iPad cover, which conceals a collapsible stand within the case's geometric grooves. It's available for $50 at slateandstylus.com.
The cause: Six different charities
1:Face Watch was a hit on crowdsourcing site Indiegogo for its sleek design and clever fundraising platform. The digital watch's face is a tempered-glass mirror; touch a button to see the time illuminated by white LEDs. The watch's six available colours correspond with the cause your cash will support: red (AIDS treatment in developing countries), black (support for cancer patients), white (feeding hungry children), blue (buying environmentally-friendly charcoal stoves for Haitians), yellow (building wells in Rwanda), and pink (funding mammograms). Choose your favourite for $40 at 1facewatch.com.