Top high-tech gear for winter

highIt’s coming. In parts of the country, the white stuff has already blanketed your front yard and made you crank up the old snowblower. In the Midwest, after a few light dustings and curiously warm days, there’s a sure sign of the coming arctic season. No problem! This high-end techie gear is designed to help you get through it. Made with the cold weather in mind, these items offer some brand new features to ward off Old Man Winter.

1. Cat B15Q ($349)

Before you balk at the price tag on this durable smartphone, know this: it will work in temps down to -4 degrees, stay submerged in freezing water for 30 minutes (up to three feet), and withstand a drop to the ice from up to six feet. It’s also just an ordinary Android smartphone that lets you play Angry Birds, make calls and text, and lasts about 16 hours per charge.

2. Outdoor Tech Wired CHIPS ($40)

Don’t let a little snow stop you from listening to Afrojack as the mood hits. These wired audio speakers snap into a ski or snowboard helmet (an audio liner is required, but many ski shops sell them). You control the volume and can mute easily to take a phone call using touch controls. The best part? Outdoor Tech made a wireless version last year, but this one never needs a recharge: it connects using a wired cable to your phone.  More