At this point asking people to support your crowd-funded concept device is kind of like asking them to support your "sure-fire multi-level marketing system." Sure, it could be legitimate, but it's better to just treat that money as if it's gone forever. That said, smartwatches might be the one exception. Pebble, arguably the legitimate dark horse in that small market and one of the first to successfully market itself, got started on Kickstarter. So maybe it wouldn't be fair to dismiss the CoWatch, a new smartwatch that features interoperability with Amazon's Alexa voice control system, out of hand. Read More
If Android Wear doesn't meet all your smartwatch needs, the Pebble series of devices is an impressive alternative... and it doesn't hurt that most of the time, it's the cheaper option. That's especially true today: discount online retailer Monoprice has the latest version of the platform, the Pebble Time, on sale. You can pick one up for just $97.99, plus shipping and local sales tax, when you apply the coupon code "AP20" at checkout. That's a discount of over fifty dollars compared to the retail price of the plastic model. Read More
Part of the attraction of things like laser tag and paintball is that they bring the team-based combat that's become so popular in online shooters into the real world. After some notable success with its embedded heads-up display for snowboarders, Recon Instruments (recently acquired by Intel) is bringing a modified version of the Android-based system to the enthusiast paintball market. The Empire EVS "smart mask" includes a tiny Google Glass-style display in the visor that relays various bits of battlefield information to the player. Read More
Tag Heuer is a Swiss luxury watchmaker. Like most luxury watchmakers, its sole purpose is to convince you, the [probably male] consumer, through various lifestyle marketing and product placement deals that its product is for people who know what's up. It's hip. It's happening. It's trendy. It's classic. It's now. It's timeless - and it tells time. Also, something about precision Swiss engineering that doesn't really matter. Oh, and it will totally make you both attractive and fit in with wealthy people!
Above, you can see a silhouetted image of the company's upcoming smartwatch. It's a watch. It will tell time. Read More
Given how young Android Wear is as a platform, it's not terribly surprising that a new "best" Wear device pops up every six months or so. But the Huawei Watch, announced way back in March at MWC in Spain, has all but stolen the proverbial show since it was first unveiled. Let's get the important parts out in front: pre-orders start today at GetHuawei.com, Google Store, Amazon.com and BestBuy.com, and ship beginning September 17th. The Huawei Watch will start at $349 for the stainless steel body and basic black leather strap and go up to $799 for the rose gold version with matching links. Read More
The Samsung Gear S2 is now officially official, and while it may be small, there's no doubt the watch carries a lot of brand baggage out of the box. The original Samsung Gear was, and this is a fact, bad. The second one wasn't even really that much better. And the Gear Fit, while sort of cool to look at, was basically worthless. And then there was the Gear S but honestly who even bought one of those? (I'm about to find out, aren't I?)
The Gear name is pretty much associated with critical and consumer misses for Samsung in the wearables market at this point, so Gear S2 is perhaps a slightly less predictable name than you might first think. Read More
If you're using a "smart" wearable device because it's fashionable rather than practical (and the current crop of smartwatches have a pretty tenuous grasp on the idea of practicality anyway), then why not just wear an old-fashioned watch or bracelet and deal with the arguable inconvenience of reaching for your phone on occasion? These and other questions might be answered by the Android app for MICA, an Intel-branded wearable that puts fashion over form.
They might be. But probably not.
The MICA is a curved-screen smartband unabashedly marketed towards women. It includes the standard call, SMS, calendar, and email notifications, plus more specialized content like fashion and horoscope apps from Refinery29. Read More
Combining metallic alloys with natural or synthetic threads, Google's ATAP and its industrial partners have created Jacquard yarn. Named for Joseph Marie Jacquard's inventions, the yarn is the basis for ATAP's Project Jacquard, an effort to make it easy for textile makers to weave interactive surfaces into everyday textiles like clothes and furniture. These surfaces would ultimately control things like mobile devices, and perhaps evolve into experiences and functions of their own. Jacquard yarn allows these new surfaces to either be plainly visible or completely hidden from the user so, just like regular yarn, designers can decide exactly how a surface will appear - or not appear, as the case may be. Read More
If the LG Watch Urbane just isn't fancy enough for you, the manufacturer is going to up the stakes. LG just announced the Watch Urbane LTE on its home turf of South Korea, ostensibly to have something to compete with Samsung's Gear S. The Watch Urbane LTE includes the capability to make voice calls, essentially turning it into a wrist-mounted cell phone. It would be the first Android Wear device with stand-alone voice capability... if it were running Android at all. According to LG's (translated) press release, the Urbane LTE is using a proprietary operating system, just like the Tizen-based Gear S. Read More
Can a grown-up company return to the kiddie pool of Kickstarter funding to help with its new product? Of course it can - this is how development works now! This morning the makers of Pebble announced Pebble Time, the company's second generation of Pebble hardware, launching exclusively through a Kickstarter funding campaign (like the record-breaking original two years ago). The company hit its modest $500,000 goal less than half an hour after posting the page.
The Pebble Time gets new hardware goodies like a color e-paper screen and microphone, enabling an experience that's more in line with what smartwatches have become over the last couple of years. Read More