There is no shortage of Alexa-powered smart speakers at this point. Even though the first third-party Google Assistant smart speakers were the stars of IFA in Berlin this past week (at least as far as audio products go), Amazon hasn't been resting on its laurels. A few more Alexa speakers were revealed at the event, including ones from big-name companies like DTS and Harman (parent company of JBL). Read More
The Amazon Echo and its integrated assistant Alexa have seen a lot of success and popularity over the past year, and now more companies have been tempted to build their own iterations of the product. Some, like Lenovo, have decided to nearly copy the entire idea, from the form factor to the Alexa integration. The result is the Lenovo Smart Assistant Speaker.
It's a cylindrical tower, much like the Echo, with a speaker grille at the bottom and what seems to be a rising control panel with volume and trigger buttons and an array of 8 360-deg far-field microphones with noise suppression that can pick up voices from up to 5m away. Read More
Beside the new nova and nova plus phones, Huawei introduced a follow-up to its MediaPad M2 today at IFA. The MediaPad M3 is a sleek new tablet from Huawei with a focus on a premium audio experience. Its stereo speakers have been designed and fine-tuned in collaboration with Harman Kardon, and the tablet ships with AKG H300 earphones that are specifically designed for it.
The 8.4" 2560x1600 display can filter out the harmful blue light in dark conditions and takes up most of the front of the device, at an 82% screen-to-body ratio. The rest of the tablet is encased in an aerospace-class aluminum body. Read More
It's alright if you've already forgotten about Project Soli - with all of the crazy futuristic stuff that the Google Advanced Technology and Projects (ATAP) team works on, it's easy to get confused. Essentially, Soli is a system that adapts radar-style techniques into tiny hardware in order to enable the tracking of hands and fingers (or anything else, really) which in turn allows software to recognize hand gestures with precision and accuracy that beats anything on the consumer market today. It's pretty cool - watch this video from last year's Google I/O for a crash course. Read More
Update: Pre-order registrations have been extended "due to high demand," until Monday February 2nd, 12pm MST. Beside the $50 discount you get for registering, you'll also receive an extra battery and a glass screen protector. Pre-orders should open on Monday, but the discount and freebies will be gone then.
Beside Energous, the most novel company I met with at CES 2015 was Saygus. Here was this start-up I hadn't heard about touting a superphone of sorts, with bells and whistles to rock most bells and blow most whistles, an unconventional product that seemed, on paper, more hallucinogenic than the most optimistic crowd-funding project you've come across. Read More