Yesterday, I was starting work on some sketches for Android TV. When it was time to move into Sketch (my current mockup tool of choice, mostly because of its Zeplin integration), I realized I hadn't really seen any good ready-made sheets, frames, or stickers for Android TV UI. So I decided to just go ahead and build a few screens, and then maybe - if they came out decent - upload them for other designers who might want to do a quick TV mockup or two.
HTC raised more than a few eyebrows when it announced the Vive, a VR headset that ostensibly competes with the more well-known Oculus Rift. But far from being some one-off excursion like the Re Camera, the Vive has gained critical acclaim from those who've had access to its pre-production developer units, and HTC's partnership with Valve gives the company an in with one of the gaming industry's most influential players. At CES 2016, HTC revealed a new model, the Vive Pre, with some very interesting additions to the original.
On top of some ergonomic adjustments for more comfortable wear, the Vive Pre adds a front-facing camera to the design, which allows for easy viewing of the real world without having to remove the headset.
When it comes to fitness bands, Fitbit is the name to beat. But with new smartwatches from Apple, Google, Microsoft, and Pebble all touting some degree of activity tracking, the company knows the competition comes in more forms than the bracelets Misfit and Jawbone strap onto the wrists of athletic people.
Fitbit has experimented with watch-like devices for a couple years, starting with the Force, which was ultimately recalled. Fitbit replaced that product with the largely identical Charge. Now it's making a smartwatch that looks less like an activity tracker and more like the Asus Zenwatch or the Apple Watch.
Most of the Android Wear devices out there are similar takes on the same use case, but watchmaker Casio is trying something a little different. The Casio Smart Outdoor Watch (WSD-F10) is an Android Wear device with sport watch styling and a seriously rugged design. It can even run for as long as a month in basic monochrome mode. It might not be a watch you wear every day, but outdoorsy folks might really dig it.
Companies want us to perceive their products in a certain way. We hardly agree with them, but sometimes we oblige their marketing taglines. Creative has come to CES with a particularly bold one. The company believes its new iRoar speaker is the most intelligent speaker on the planet.
At last year's Mobile World Congress, HTC and Under Armour announced the Grip, a fitness tracker that would never appear on store shelves. HTC scrapped the product to work on something better—its words, not ours. At this year's CES, HTC and Under Armour are back to show us what better means.
A full year after its announcement at CES 2015, the ASUS ZenFone is ready to make its grand public debut on US territory. The phone, which looks like an amalgam of an Android phone and a Lumia 1020, touts some very interesting and rare, if not unique, features and it will officially launch in the US in early February for $399.
The coup de force of the ZenFone Zoom is its 13MP 3X optical zoom lens with 10 element HOYA arrangement, laser autofocus, OIS, and a dedicated camera shutter button which should result in sharp and detailed photos, even at a distance.
Google's Android Auto system is gaining a bit of steam, but you still need to hunt for a manufacturer and model that support it (assuming you're buying a new car and not just upgrading your stereo). That will be a little easier later this year: in the lead-up to CES, American manufacturing giant Ford has announced that its semi-proprietary SYNC system will soon support Android Auto. Specifically, those cars that are currently on the road and use SYNC version 3 will be upgraded with Android Auto capability, and 2017 SYNC-equipped models should have Android Auto support built in.
Android Auto support will come along with a host of other upgrades, including simultaneous support for Apple's competing CarPlay standard.
There are many ways you could go about filling your home with connected devices. You can pick a standard like ZigBee or Z-Wave and stick to it. You could try looking for anything that mentions SmartThings compatibility on the page. Or you could buy all of your products from a single company. That's the approach LG would like you to take.
Like Samsung, LG has produced fridges, kitchen ranges, washing machines, and dryers with touchscreens and "smart" features. At this year's CES it's introducing a new hub that can help you keep up with those appliances.
The world of open source collaborative projects can be murky at times, and throwing crowdfunding into the mix doesn't make it any clearer. This odd intersection is the source of much drama in the small but passionate community that wants to see Android become as widespread on the desktop as it is on mobile. Members of the open source development team over at the Android-x86 Project, which aims to make Android operable on standard PC hardware, claim that Kickstarter project Console OS has "stolen" Android x86 code and presented it, at least in part, as its own creation.