February 23, 2024

Karandeep Oberoi’s 5 favourite things of 2023

Karandeep Oberoi’s 5 favourite things of 2023

2023 was a happy and inspiring year where I got a lot done.

From exploring the wonders of the night sky with my new telescope, to staying connected and healthy with my Apple Watch Ultra, and managing my messages and notifications with the Beeper Cloud app, here are my five favourites from 2023.

Favourite purchase: A 10-inch Dobsonian telescope

In 2023, I rekindled my passion for amateur astronomy.

When I was a young teenager, I was fascinated with space and wanted to be an astronomer. That desire quickly phased out when I realized that becoming an astronomer requires physics and maths, both of which I hated with a passion.

Amateur astronomy, on the other hand, requires no formal education. All you need is a dark and clear sky, and a sense of curiosity. Pair that with a telescope, and the wonders of the night sky come within your reach.

Karandeep Oberoi’s 5 favourite things of 2023I purchased an Orion XT10i earlier this year, which is a 10-inch Dobsonian telescope. It’s perfect for observing the moon, planets, and deep-sky objects, such as galaxies and nebulae. However, it is not suitable for taking pictures of them.

It features a computerized object locator that makes finding faint objects easier than manually locating them and is easy to set up and use.

With this telescope, I have seen amazing sights that I never imagined before. I have seen the rings of Saturn and the bands of Jupiter in stunning detail, as well as the craters and mountains of the moon and the colourful clouds of some bright nebulae.

The Orion XT10i is definitely my favourite purchase of 2023. It has reignited the amateur astronomer in me.

Favourite series: Jujutsu Kaisen’s Shibuya Incident Arc

Jujutsu Kaisen fans had to wait three long years for the second season of the hit anime, but the long wait was worth it.

The new season ended a few days ago, on Thursday, December 28th, concluding the most intense arc of the anime: the Shibuya Incident Arc. The arc follows the events of Halloween 2018,  when a group of cursed spirits and curse users launch a coordinated attack on Shibuya, Tokyo, with the aim of sealing the strongest jujutsu sorcerer, Satoru Gojo.

The arc delivered a thrilling ride of emotions, with brutal battles, crazy revelations, heartbreaking deaths, and dramatic twists enough to keep you on the edge of your seat. Without giving too much away, the season elevated Jujutsu Kaisen from a well-made anime to one of the best I have ever seen.

Jujutsu Kaisen is available to stream on Crunchyroll.


Favourite gadget: Apple Watch Ultra 1st-gen (2022)

The Apple Watch Ultra (1st-Gen) (2022) is the best smartwatch I have ever owned. I bought it during a recent Black Friday sale at Walmart for a great deal, saving about $400 from its original price. Since then, it has quickly become my daily driver.

Its seamless connectivity with my iPhone is what I like the most about the watch, paired with its health-tracking features. It syncs all my notifications, calls, and messages seamlessly. I can also use it to control my phone’s camera, music and Siri, like having a mini iPhone strapped to your wrist.

Karandeep Oberoi’s 5 favourite things of 2023The ‘Time spent in sunlight‘ feature is my favourite of the bunch. It makes it easy for me to track how much time I’ve spent under the sun each day, which is an important metric considering the sunless and gloomy Canadian winters. Other metrics that I regularly look at are my blood oxygen levels, respiratory rate and resting heart rate.

The display is much brighter than the Apple Watch Series 5 I was using before the Watch Ultra, and I can easily stretch out up to two days on a single charge. The display is Always On, so I can see the time and other information without raising my wrist. The watch also has a sleek design and a comfortable fit, alongside a slew of bands to choose from, making it suitable for any occasion.

The Apple Watch Ultra is a companion that helps me stay connected, healthy and entertained. I am happy with my purchase, and I would recommend it to anyone looking for a premium and versatile wearable to go with their iPhone.

Favourite review for MobileSyrup: Razer’s Atlas Mousepad

I loved reviewing Razer’s Atlas mousepad. Before trying it out, I was oblivious to the fact that tempered glass/tempered glass-coated mouse pads exist, and now it’s hard for me to go back to a regular mousepad.

A tempered glass mousepad sure sounds gimmicky, but it’s not. The glass mousepad offers a smooth and precise surface for gaming. Testing it out for the first time was a unique experience, mostly due to how effortlessly my mice glide on it. The Atlas also features a high-quality rubber grip base that prevents the pad from moving around.

There are no RGBs on the mousepad, and thus, no USB ports of any sort and no cables to manage.

Eight months in, the Razer Atlas remains at my desk, unbothered and in its lane, listening to the cries of older mousepads begging to be used. I barely need to clean it (unlike a regular mousepad), and wiping it with a slightly damp cloth every once in a while does the job.

The only drawback with the Atlas is that it is heavy and not portable, but that isn’t necessarily a problem if you’re replacing an older mousepad, which can be used as a portable pad whenever you need to use it on the move.

Favourite app: Beeper Cloud

I loved using Bepper Cloud in 2023. Beeper Cloud essentially allows you to unify 15 messaging apps into one, including the likes of iMessage, WhatsApp, Telegram, Signal, Instagram chat, Facebook Messenger, and more.

I am deep into the Apple ecosystem, and using iMessage to stay in touch with friends and family is part of my daily routine. Whenever I review an Android device, I make it my daily driver for a little bit. This meant missing out on iMessage and FaceTime to stay in touch, or carrying two phones at all times.

Karandeep Oberoi’s 5 favourite things of 2023Beeper Cloud is one of my favourite things from 2023 because it has made my life easier. With the app, I can access all my chats in one place, without switching between multiple apps or devices, and have access to iMessage while using an Android device.

The app essentially logs you into its “fleet of Mac servers” to relay messages between iMessage and Beeper. Beeper says, once logged in, user credentials are never stored, logged, or cached. Beeper messages are end-to-end encrypted and can not be read by Beeper employees.

Beeper Cloud is available as a mobile and PC app.

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