Recently CNET published some of the first images of the new USB Type-C cables and ports coming in the future. This new, tiny connector is due to be a reversible form, taking much of the aggravation out of plugging power or data transfer cables into your device. Essentially, this is along the same lines as Apple’s Lightning port. It has been a while since we moved from mini USB to micro USB and a refresh is exciting, there shouldn’t be too many folk out there to grumble as much as Apple users did when their expensive docks and chargers became a little bit incompatible with newer Apple devices. However, anyone who has struggled to find the right way round for a microUSB to fit into their phone in the dark will certainly appreciate the new form.
LG Electronics (LG) is working together with Google on the LG G Watch powered by Android Wear™, which extends the Android platform to wearables. The LG G Watch will be compatible with a wide range of Android™ smartphones and will present relevant information to users just when they need it or whenever they say “OK Google” to ask questions or get stuff done. As one of Google’s lead partners in this effort, LG is planning to introduce its first watch powered by Android Wear in the second quarter of 2014.
The LG G Watch powered by Android Wear will present a low barrier to entry for developers and offer the best Google experience for users. LG engineers worked closely with Google from the initial stages of development to ensure that the LG G Watch worked perfectly with Android Wear. This is LG’s fourth device developed in close collaboration with Google following the Nexus 4, Nexus 5, and the LG G Pad 8.3 Google Play Edition.
“The opportunity to work with Google on LG G Watch was the perfect chance for LG to really pull out all stops in both design and engineering,” said Dr. Jong-seok Park, president and CEO of LG Electronics Mobile Communications Company. “With the LG G Watch, LG is continuing the milestones we’ve set in wearables following in the footsteps of the world’s first 3G Touch Watch Phone in 2009 and the Prada Link in 2008. We’re confident that a well-designed device has the potential to take the smart wearable market by storm.”
Additional details of the LG G Watch powered by Android Wear, including hardware specifications, will be announced in the coming months.
Leaker @evleaks was bang on the money the other day as we have now seen Samsung announce the Samsung Galaxy Gear 2 and the Galaxy Gear Neo. The first point folks will be looking at on these wearables are the price as the first was launched with a rather hefty price tag. This dropped rapidly as the devices were not flying off the shelves. No prices were announced unfortunately but it is a safe bet the Neo will be cheaper than the Gear 2.
The most important factor of these watches are that Samsung chosen platform is no longer based on Android, but Tizen. You can pretty much forget about using this with you Motorola, Nexus, HTC or any non Galaxy device. One can’t help but wonder about the wealth of apps that are currently out for the original Android flavoured Gear… oh wait… there are only about 10.
Samsung Galaxy Gear 2
While gaudy processor and RAM specs don’t quite have the same importance for smart watches as they do phones, it’s still important. The Galaxy Gear 2 slightly improves on the original with the following suite of silicon:
- 1.63-inch 320 x 320 AMOLED display
- 1GHz dual-core processor
- 512MB of RAM
- 4GB of internal storage
- 2 megapixel camera
- Pedometer, heart rate sensor, sleep cycle monitor and more
- Bluetooth 4.0 LE
- Accelerometer and gyroscope
- 300mAh battery good for about 2-3 days of “typical” usage
Samsung Galaxy Gear Neo
This is the same as the Gear 2 aside from the camera, it’s gone. Samsung are bragging a bunch of not so silly colours. The Neo should be available in Charcoal Black, Mocha Gray, and Wild Orange.
Looks as thought Apple might just be launching the iWatch later this year according to new reports from The New York Times and 9to5Mac. An unnamed Apple employee said that Apple’s Bob Mansfield, the senior vice president for technologies, is “directly involved” with and iWatch, and has been “heavily involved” with “exploring devices, sensors and technologies within Apple that can monitor people’s health and connect to an iPhone.” Another Apple employee said that former Adobe executive Kevin Lynch, who joined Apple last year, is currently working on software for the watch.
One of the big rumours surrounding iOS 8 is the inclusion of a “Healthbook” that is touted to keep track of fitness statistics including steps taken, calories burned, miles walked, but also monitor weight loss. Additionally, Healthbook would monitor important tuning like blood pressure, hydration levels, heart rate “and potentially several other blood-related data points, such as glucose levels.” For all this, an iWatch would be required, a product that’s described to be “designed to be heavily reliant on the iPhone.”
Google announced their newest upgrade to the Google Glass wearable smart-glasses, only this time it isn’t a software or hardware upgrade, but is actually a structural one. They now have prescription glass frames available that are specifically designed to fit with Google Glass. They are called the Titanium Collection, and that doesn’t just describe their aesthetics. These new Google Glass frames are literally made of ultra-light titanium alloys.
Their Titanium Collection includes “four feather-light titanium frames and two new styles of twist-on shades, designed just for you.” Now you can consider getting Google Glass without worrying about looking like a full-blown dork, just a half-dork! (We kid about this because some of us here at HQ are actually becoming more intrigued by this device regardless of how it looks to other.)
We have mentioned before that Archos is introducing a new, cheap take on the wearables phenomenon with their smartwatches. These Bluetooth reliant assistants are due to pair with both Android or iOS phone, after a quick install of the Archos Smartwatch management app on the relevant phone. After which the user selects the notifications to vibrate and alert you of whats going on in your pocket. Much like a few other smartwatches out there. Archos are giving you a choice of what screen technology you have to display notifications. For $129 you can have E Ink touted to last for 1-2 weeks on a single charge. A $99 LCD won’t last quite a long at 2-3 days on its battery due to this having a touchscreen backlit screen. Lastly, the french manufacturer will be producing a $50 Memory LCD version featuring a black and white, always on screen good for 1-2 weeks. Like most smartwatches the pair will charge with a dock.
Earlier this week, we mentioned Archos was planning launch a smartwatch this year and show the wearable off next week during CES 2014. Keep with Archos’ cheap and cheerful approach the watch is likely to retail for $85 Stateside and looks to use some form of e-paper technology.
One of the bigger features of the smartwatches is an Activity Tracker that monitors daily footsteps, calories burned, and automatically displays time when the device is synchronized with a smartphone. The Activity Tracker will be equipped with a battery life of up to 7 days, and recharged via a hidden microUSB port.
Also scheduled to make an appearance is a new Helium 4G range of unlocked smartphones, the company’s first LTE smartphones powered by Android 4.3 “Jelly Bean”. Two phones featuring Android 4.3 “Jelly Bean” out of the box, and upgradable to Android 4.4.2 “KitKat” soon after.
We have always liked Archos and their attempt to marry value for money, higher specifications and a dash of innovation. Over the years they have managed mixed results but that has never stopped them from trying to reach the cutting edge and this year is no different. Coming up next week at CES are a bunch of new solutions to your gadget needs.
ARCHOS Connected Home
Accessing the ecosystem from anywhere in the world and from any iOS or Android platform, users can retrieve data or command actions using the ARCHOS Smart Home App or the custom- designed Smart Home Tablet – a unique gateway that combines Android with multiple connected objects. ARCHOS’ proprietary app and 7” home gateway give users the ability to customise actions based on different scenarios or triggers such as turning on the light and recording video as soon as a motion
sensor is activated.
Archos approach to this new solution is based on key principles such as sleek design and small accessories (the cam is the size of a pin pong ball), use of Bluetooth Low Energy for long lasting battery life, easy set-up of each connected objects and easy pairing with the Home Gateway and user’s phones or tablets. ARCHOS’ ecosystem of Connected Home Objects, including a mini cam, motion ball, movement tag, weather tag and smart plug, adhere to the tenet that innovative solutions should be easy to use, unobtrusive and efficient.
ARCHOS will also unveil a Weather Station during CES 2014. The ARCHOS Weather Station provides both indoor and outdoor information including CO2 levels, humidity, temperature, atmospheric pressure and environmental noise levels. Similar to the Smart Home App, a proprietary Weather Station app will showcase home and national weather information while recording, tracking and graphing all data for historic comparison and analysis.
ARCHOS Connected Self
The ARCHOS Connected Self App will serve as the backbone application for all connected self devices and will provide key metrics for quick health assessment, display graphs to track activity over time and enable up to 8 different users to set goals to increase motivation. ARCHOS’ selection of Connected Self products on display during CES 2014 include:
ARCHOS Connected Scale – this elegant scale recognises 4 difference users, measures body shape based on mass and height, tracks body fat mass to help users lose weight intelligently and is equipped with onboard memory to prevent data loss between synchronisations.
ARCHOS Activity Tracker – this stylish activity tracker monitors daily footsteps, calories burned and automatically displays time when synchronised with a smartphone. Recharges using USB connector and is equipped with a battery life of up to 7 days.
ARCHOS Blood Pressure Monitor – Easy and quick to use blood pressure monitor equipped with memory for over 40 different measurements also displays heart beat information. Comes with irregular heart beat detector and can filter data by time period (morning, day, night).
ARCHOS’ entire selection of connected objects will be on display during CES 2014 at Central Hall Booth 9844. ARCHOS will also be unveiling a selection of smartwatches starting at under £50. ARCHOS smartwatches embrace simplicity and function, feature a pebble-like design and will be compatible with both iOS and Android devices
Are we going to see stickers on cars bumpers saying Android Onboard? It looks like Google wants to dominate our roadways next, and we aren’t talking about their self-driving cars either. According to recent reports Google and Audi will announce a partnership at CES in January. The details of this partnership reportedly revolve around an Android-based automobile entertainment/navigation and information user interface. Google is partnering up with one of the most well respected auto manufacturers in the globe in order to help build global recognition of Android as the premier core element for music, navigation, apps, and Google voice search in future cars.
We will keep an eye out at CES for any hint of this partnership and bring the details as quickly as we can. As a sidebar, there is also talk that NVIDIA might also be partnering up with auto-makers to provide the hardware to power these Android-based car entertainment/nav systems.
Paick is set to show off at CES a new super-slim ½-inch thick 6000mAh portable battery. This ultra-thin wallet-sized is designed for the back pocket or to be thrown in a bag with a dust-proof dual USB/Micro USB slot for Smartphone Charging. The battery is tipped to be compatablie with iPhone 5, 5C, 5S, Samsung Galaxy, HTC, Android Phones, tablets and most USB devices.
Paick www.paick.com, the company creating new digital fashion ideas for life, launched today Noble, the ultra-thin ½ inch portable 6000mAh power bank for business professionals. Fashionably styled with a streamlined wallet-sized aluminium alloy high performance casing, Noble is much thinner than other power banks, which are usually over 1 inch thick. Noble easily fits in a back pocket or bag for easy portability and is low cost with a promotional pricing of only $49.99 from now until March 23, 2013 (normally priced at $64.99). Noble features an intelligentdustproof pop-up interface with two USB slots and 1 Micro USB slot that lets you pop-up for access to the USB charging slots or pop-down to keep it extra slim and free of dust.
Charges iPhone Three Times, Galaxy Twice and iPad Once – One Touch Screen Activation
A Li-polymer battery charger, Noble is more stable and safer than Li-ion batteries. Noble charges iPhone 5, 5C, 5S, Samsung Galaxy, HTC, Android phones, tablets & most USB devices, fully charging an iPhone three times, a Galaxy phone twice, or an iPad once. Noble also features an Advanced Odin Circuit System with efficient synchronous rectifier output, an intelligent on/off touch sensor with one-touch screen activation, Smart Safety Protection and LEDs that show remaining power: 1 LED indicates less than 25%, 2 LEDs: 25%-50%, 3 LEDs: 50%-75%, 4 LEDs: 75%-100%.
Noble to be Introduced at CES 2014 in Las Vegas
Paick will introduce the new Noble super-thin low-cost 6000mAh power bank at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), held Jan. 7-10, 2014 in Las Vegas, at the Noble Booth #70902 – Venetian Ballroom. To schedule press meetings at CES, contact: Karen Thomas/Eva Yutani/Bill Kouwenhovenkthomas@thomaspr.com, firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com.
• 6000mAh portable charger.
• Charges iPhone 5, 5C, 5S, Samsung Galaxy, HTC, Android phones, tablets & most USB devices.
• Unique pop-up interface provides the best dustproofing and a slim design.
• LED lighting design displays remaining battery life.
• Intelligent on/off touch sensor with one-touch screen activation.
• Dual USB ports: One 5V-2.1A and one 5V-1A USB output.
• 1 Micro USB port.
• Odin Circuit System: Synchronous Rectifier Output.
• Intelligent fast charging.
• Smart Safety Protection ensures safe charging.
• Dimensions: 4.6” length x 2.8” wide x ½” thick (118.2 x 2.2 x 13.6mm).
Promotional Pricing until March 20, 2013
Noble includes the power bank, USB/Micro USB cable, and skid-resistance rubber belt. Normally priced at $64.99, with promotional pricing of $49.99 from now until March 20, 2013, Noble is available immediately from Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/gp/