This year's Consumer Electronics Show will kick off next week, and many tech companies are ready to show off their gadgets. Alcatel OneTouch plans to attract attention on the show floor with its line of affordable phones and watches. But this time the price isn't the biggest draw.
The Alcatel OneTouch PIXI 3 series of handsets offer screens ranging from 3.5 to 5 inches. The smallest will only support 3G, while the 4", 4.5", and 5" options should handle 4G LTE as well. All will apparently be able to run Android, Firefox OS, or Windows. Alcatel describes the devices as OS agnostic but doesn't specify if the same hardware will run each platform or if there will be different models to choose from. Read More
Word has hit the street that the Asus ZenWatch will launch in the US on November 9th. Two days from now shoppers reportedly will be able to pick one up from Best Buy for $199.99, with Play Store availability coming at some point after.
The ZenWatch is a peculiar Wear device. It's square, but unlike the LG G Watch or the Samsung Gear Live, it tries to look more like a traditional accessory than a tech gadget. At two hundred bucks, it's arguably the most premium-looking smartwatch you can get for the price.
A Google executive has also said that the Asus ZenWatch will offer a taste of what customized software can look like on Android Wear. Read More
WebOS, the last and sadly failed initiative from the venerable Palm Inc., seems to have more lives than Mumm-Ra the Everliving. After getting a second chance when HP acquired the Palm company, then a third when LG tried it out on connected televisions, it looks like the Korean manufacturer is going to give it a shot at powering future smartwatches. The Verge spotted a WebOS smartwatch page on LG's development portal, which was then swiftly taken down.
The screenshots taken before the site was canned don't say much, but they say just enough. LG is an enormous company, much bigger than many in the west realize. Read More
The Pebble team is continuing to pump life into their monochromatic smartwatch, and it's now rolling out an update that toggles on a few new features. Version 2.5 of the Pebble firmware brings support for emoji, enables compass functionality, and introduces iOS 8 compatibility (one of the items on this change log impacts us less than the others). Just like the previous updates, you get the goods by firing up the Android app and making sure it's paired with your watch.
Once everything's up to date, emoji that arrive in message alerts will actually display properly. A smiley will show up as an image of an actual face, not a set of symbols. Read More
The last we heard of an HTC smartwatch, it was a replica of a rumor, a render of a render posted by the now-retired Evleaks. Then Pocket-Lint reported that HTC had scrapped plans for a Qualcomm Toq-based watch, according to "sources familiar with the matter." If all that wasn't nebulous enough for you, now Cnet says that HTC's watch is coming back, scheduled for a release sometime next year. Try to keep up here.
Mockup of an HTC Android Wear watch. Totally not a real one. Duh.
With the entrance of both Google on the software side and Apple, it's safe to say that the somewhat niche smartwatch segment is heating up. Read More
Update: Motorola responded to Ars Technica's post on the same iFixit story to explain the battery discrepancy. According to the statement, 300mAh is a "minumum rating" for the battery manufactured by Pro-Power, while 320mAh is a more typical rating. (Batteries are much less precise in terms of capacity than, say, a RAM DIMM.) The mix-up reportedly stems from the fact that they simply didn't have room for both a minimum and maximum rating on the tiny label, and erred on the side of caution - after all, end users aren't really supposed to see it. You can read Motorola's full statement at Ars Technica. Read More