Posted By Simon Montford on Jan 4, 2016
Expect to see some very exciting technologies come our way in 2016. There is no doubt that the pace of innovation will continue to accelerate, resulting in a glut of new consumer devices that, only a few years ago, were products of our imagination and props in science fiction movies. For example Tony Stark's A.I. assistant, J.A.R.V.I.S. (Just A Rather Very Intelligent System), featured in the Iron Man series of movies, looks like it will become a reality this year.
Posted By Simon Montford on Dec 21, 2015
A UK registered company based in Bristol called OXY Technologies, has launched a campaign on Indiegogo for a smartwatch that will be able to connect with Android, iOS and Windows 10 smartphones. The makers are working with the open source community to accelerate development, and improve the product.
Posted By Simon Montford on Dec 4, 2015
Chronos turns a watch into a smartwatch. It lights up and vibrates when messages, calls, or notifications are received. The device will cost around $100 (£65) when it goes on sale next year, meaning that conventional watch owners will get all the benefits of owning a smartwatch without having to buy one. Obviously, the Chronos is more of a substitute for pseudo smartwatches like the Activite Pop, as it lacks many of the features offered by more sophisticated ones that run apps, and feature touchscreens.
Posted By Simon Montford on Dec 1, 2015
Omate announced today that they will be holding a flash sale of their new 3G enabled smartwatch, the Omate Rise, exclusively on crowdfunding platform Indiegogo. The company will be accepting pre-orders from 3pm GMT / 10am EST on Monday December 7th, for a 48hr period. Backers will be the first in the World to wear the Rise when it becomes available to them in March 2016, instead of June.
Posted By Simon Montford on Oct 17 2015
Whenever I go out wearing my LG Watch Urbane during the day it receives very little attention, because it looks very much like a conventional horological watch. At night, however, it's a different story. The Urbane's illuminated P-OLED fascia looks so good it turns heads.
Posted By Simon Montford on May 20, 2015
An increasing number of people are concerned about the security of their private data. Most of us store our data on servers that are owned and operated by third parties, but is it 100% safe and secure? Last year hackers obtained highly sensitive images via a breach of Apple's cloud services suite iCloud, and posted them on the Internet. As a result "private cloud" hosting has become more popular.
Posted By Simon Montford on May 19, 2015
The term "smartwatch" is becoming increasingly confusing. A powerful touchscreen device that's capable of running apps, making and receiving calls, as well as texts is a very different beast to a Fitness Band that tracks activity, and tells the time. Both devices, however, are referred to as "Smartwatches", as are the three illustrated above, but they possess very different features, and capabilities.
Posted By Simon Montford on May 6, 2015
It looks like Mini's decided to join the silly face fashion brigade with the launch of a prototype pair of augmented reality glasses that enable the driver to see through a vehicle's interior. The technology is undoubtedly groundbreaking, and has the potential to make driving safer, but with driverless cars on the horizon, will this be a still-born technology by the time it becomes commercially available?
Posted By Simon Montford on May 1, 2015
Pulse Play is a social scorekeeping, and ranking system for racket players. It is aimed at amateurs because they often don't have anyone impartial to keep score, which can result in disagreements, or even arguments during a friendly game of tennis, squash, badminton, or table tennis. If you're a fan of racket sports, then I'm sure you'll be able to relate.
Posted By Simon Montford on April 30, 2015
The much anticipated Apple Watch may not work as anticipated if the wearer has tattoos within the area of skin that the Apple watch is in contact with. This is because the sensors (light-sensitive photodiodes), that monitor heart rate, use a reflective light technology that penetrates skin in order to work. Tattoo ink, however, interferes with this process causing the sensors to deactivate.
Posted By Simon Montford on April 23, 2015
This device is clearly aimed at serious swimmers, however, I can also see it appealing to those that already own a fancy smartwatch, or intend to buy an Apple Watch, which is splash and water resistant, but not waterproof. Swimmo is, as you'd expect, waterproof and offers advanced functionality specifically for those who wish to improve their lap times. The device records number of laps, calories, distance, heart rate, and speed.
Posted By Simon Montford on April 20, 2015
A San Franciso-based startup called Prana Tech is seeking $100,000 on Kickstarter, however with only 10 days remaining it looks doubtful if the $100,000 campaign target will be met. According to the company's CEO, good breathing and posture are keys to good health. By providing the wearer with gentle encouragement and reminders to sit straight and relax, it's like having mini Tai Chi and Yoga workouts throughout the day.
Posted By Simon Montford on April 1, 2015
As I've said previously, the fitness tracker's days are numbered. I just can't see why anyone would bother with a FitBit or a Jawbone once the smartwatch goes mainstream (which it will). Highly specialised devices, however, that are designed for elite athletes, and those with specific requirements such as swimmers (xmetrics), weightlifters, CrossFitters (Beast, PushStrength, GymWatch, Atlas, Moov), and yoga (Smartmat) will continue to thrive.
Posted By Simon Montford on March 31, 2015
The sleek looking Olio is the work of a former HP and Apple product designer Steven Jacobs. Like a growing number of newly released smartwatches, it apes the appearance of a conventional timepiece. This is because the team at Olio Devices chose to utilise high quality materials, instead of the usual plastic or rubber that's so frequently used by other wearable OEMs.
Posted By Simon Montford on March 21, 2015
According to BMWs blog, and as reported by TechDrive, owners of electric powered cars by the Bavarian behemoth will be able to run an app called the "i App" on the new Apple Watch. Initially the app will enable the wearer to find their car, and check the amount of charge remaining in their car's battery. Other features will be added soon. At CES this year, car-related technologies were all the rage. The same went for MWC, where almost every stand had at least one car on display, often for no good reason!
Posted By Simon Montford on March 12, 2015
Last weekend I attended one of a series of Intel Hardware Hackathons, sponsored by IBM (BlueMix), Intel (Edison), and RSComponents, which took place at FabLab in London. The event was part of a multi-city initiative by Intel to raise awareness of the IoT among the startup community by bringing together software engineers (aka "Hackers") and connected hardware enthusiasts (aka "Makers"). It is hoped that by doing so, innovative prototypes that use Intel's "Do-It-Yourself" Edison circuit board, will be developed that showcase the UK's talent for all things IoT, as well as the board's capabilities.
Posted By Simon Montford on March 9, 2015
Wearable technology is becoming increasingly popular, especially smartwatches, fitness trackers, smart clothing, and smart jewellery. As these items are attached to the body, they're far less likely to get lost or stolen, but how about all the other smart tech that we will increasingly carry around with us like umbrellas, smartphones, wallets and smart glasses? Instead of calling them "wearables", perhaps they should be called "bringables" or "carryables". The term most often used, however for such items is the word "Appcessories".
Posted By Simon Montford on March 6, 2015
I feel kinda bad for saying this but, FlyShark have produced one of the most bizarre Kickstarter videos I've seen in a while. I mean who goes for a 1.3 mile run wearing a suit? That's weird, but hold on the weirdness continues. The dude then prepares a "romantic" dinner for some poor unsuspecting girl, that consists of KFC, followed by what must surely be her most favorite thing in the world, ever - chocolate cake. This is because upon seeing the cake her pulse rockets to 180bpm!
Posted By Simon Montford on March 6, 2015
How many times has your umbrella been lost or stolen? In my case, I've lost count! The Davek Alert Umbrella alerts you when you step out of range, because inside the handle is a Bluetooth LE beacon, which can be synced to any iOS or Android smartphone. The app provides weather info, and is even smart enough to recommend when you may need to bring your smart umbrella with you. Tracking devices are becoming increasingly popular among the absent-minded, and safety conscious.
Posted By Simon Montford on March 3, 2015
Quell is the only drug-free FDA approved, and doctor recommended, device in the States that's clinically proven to relieve chronic pain at the touch of a button. The Boston-based company wants to help millions of people avoid discomfort as well as the health implications, and side-effects of taking pain-relieving medication. NeuroMetrix, Quell's creator, launched a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo earlier this week that exceeded its funding target a day after launch.
Posted By Simon Montford on March 3, 2015
LG's new "Watch Urbane" and "Watch Urbane LTE" smartwatches are certainly a step forward compared to the previous model, the LG G Watch R. Although bulkier, the Urbane LTE comes with 4G and a new operating system, which means it can allow the wearer to make and answer calls, and send texts without a smartphone. There is no question that this is the future.
Posted By Simon Montford on Feb 24, 2015
Watching Pebble's live Kickstarter campaigns is becoming a bit like a spectator sport! I've been glued to the screen watching the pledges counter. As I write, Pebble's campaign total of $500,000 has been totally obliterated, and the total has now reached $6,576,994 (£4,256,485). With 31 days still remaining, how high can it go, and more importantly, can Pebble beat Exploding Kittens target of $8,782,571, which was set only a few days ago? Check out my Youtube video at the bottom of the page.
Posted By Simon Montford on Feb 21, 2015
A startup called Neptune has taken an entirely new approach to smartwatch design. It's founder, Simon Tian believes your smartwatch will take centre stage and your smartphone will become its trusty, but far less intelligent sidekick. The company recently announced the Neptune Duo, that'll not only be able to run Android Lollipop, but the device will also come with wi-fi, 4G, NFC, and GPS. In other words it will be capable of replacing your smartphone.
Posted By Simon Montford on Feb 19, 2015
I love the concept of augmented reality, but like so many people, I find the appearance of augmented reality wearables unpalatable. No OEM thus far has been able to figure out how to shoehorn the required tech into such a small formfactor. Wearables need to be lightweight, and most importantly, stylish. Turns out Sony can't make wearable look good either.
Posted By Simon Montford on Feb 16, 2015
E-ink provides a really crisp display and uses very little power, making it an ideal technology for small screen connected devices like Displio, as well as smartwatches such as the Geak Watch 2, and wearables such as the Tago arc by Boston's Liberate Technologies Inc. One major drawback of using e-ink instead of LCD or OLED, however, is that it can only display monochrome images.
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