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Wearables

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Latest Android Wear Update Adds WiFi Support To The LG G Watch R

Google added support for WiFi communication to Android Wear in the 5.1 update a few months ago, but not all watches had the necessary hardware. The pricey LG G Watch R was among those lacking proper support. LG said it planned to rectify that in an update over the summer, and indeed it has in the new Wear update.

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Intel And Fossil Briefly Show Off A New Android Wear Watch With A Round (Flat Tire) Screen

Fossil has been talking about getting into wearable technology for some time, and now it is finally giving us a peek at what it's been working on with Intel. At Intel Developer Forum (IDF) today, Fossil had three Intel-powered wearable devices on hand, one of which was an Android Wear smartwatch. It looks like the offspring of a union between a Watch Urbane and a Moto 360.

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[Deal Alert] Get An Alcatel Onetouch Idol 3 And Onetouch Watch Bundle For $299 ($100 Off)

Alcatel is running a new promotion today for the back-to-school season, and it looks like a good one. For a limited time, you can get an Idol 3 smartphone and a Onetouch Watch for $299. The phone by itself is $250, so you're effectively only paying $50 for the watch.

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LG Starts Shipping Tiny Hexagonal Batteries That Offer 25% More Storage Capacity In Round Smart Watches

Square batteries are fine for square things, but the latest craze is round watches, which means lots of wasted space on the inside. That's a bummer when we're already struggling to keep watches running for more than a day. However, LG Chem says it has leveraged new manufacturing techniques to produce hexagonal batteries that can cram as much as 25% more power into a watch.

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Intel's Fashion-Focused MICA Smartband Gets An Official Android Companion App

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.

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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.

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31 Best Android Wear Apps And Watch Faces From 4/22/15—6/18/15

We're on the verge of second generation Android Wear devices, but you don't have to wait to stock up on cool apps and watch faces. We've got all the best stuff from the last few weeks right here for your perusal. So grab your watch and read on for the best new Wear stuff. It's mostly watch faces these days, but we are still talking about watches, right?

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Google's ATAP Introduces Project Jacquard To Make Interactive Textiles Easier To Produce And Use

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.

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Lenovo's Magic View Embeds A Second Virtual Interactive Display Into A Smartwatch

Lenovo's Tech World conference seems to be a never-ending parade of real products and crazy concepts, and this Magic View smartwatch joins the ranks of the latter while still having some grounds in reality. "But Rita, what is Magic View?" I hear you ask. It's a smartwatch with two screens. Yesssss. Let that sink in for a moment.

The second screen, dubbed a "Virtual Interactive Display," is physically smaller than the main round display (which is reminiscent of the Moto 360, flat-tire and all), but can project an image up to 20 times its size. That is when you hold it close to your eye.

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[APK Download] Wear Mini Launcher Is Updated To v4.0, Comes With Flashlight, Remote Phone Lock, Music Controls

The popular Wear Mini Launcher began rolling out a major update today, going from v3.0.3 to v4.0.0. The changes may not be as large as you would expect for an increase in version number, but they are welcome nonetheless. The main additions are the ability to reorder the quick settings, a "flashlight" app available in the drawer, music controls in the menu, and the ability to remotely lock your phone.

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With the vastly improved navigation in Android Wear 5.1, some users may not feel like they need Mini Launcher as much. Of course, this is why its developer is pushing out updates like this, as it helps keep things useful beyond what stock Wear offers.

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The Android Wear 5.1.1 Rollout Has Begun For The LG G Watch And G Watch R

We now have confirmation that Android Wear 5.1.1 has started to reach LG's G Watch and G Watch R today. Though most users are still being told they are up to date, a select few have been lucky enough to be chosen for the first hours of the rollout.

Thanks to tipster Kevin for the G Watch R screenshot and to Frank Barten for the G Watch image.

For those who are unfamiliar, OS updates tend to first go to a very small portion of users, around 1%, for a period that ranges from a few hours to a couple of days.

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