Prototypes are always cool to see, but us consumers don't often get to do so. It's nice to take a look at how the designs of products evolve from the drawing board all the way to our homes, pockets, and backpacks. An interview with Google hardware designer Ivy Ross recently went up on The Keyword, and embedded within are photos of several Google products' prototypes.
The original NVIDIA Shield Portable (just called 'NVIDIA Shield' at first) was released back in 2013, and is still a very unique device. It had the form factor of a flip handheld console, like a Nintendo DS, but was much beefier and used NVIDIA's own Tegra 4 chipset. The result was a beast of a gaming system that ran stock Android, and could stream games from your PC (as long as you had an NVIDIA GPU).
Today is just one day away from OnePlus' announcement, and everyone is eagerly anticipating the final reveal of the company's latest flagship. While we while away the last 24 hours in anticipation of the OnePlus 5 launch event, the fine folks over at The Verge were able to get an exclusive with the company about the new camera setup in the upcoming phone. The article explains a lot of the design decisions that had to be made and demonstrates how OnePlus iterated upon different configurations.
With the OnePlus 5 now confirmed for a summer release, design and spec leaks have started to emerge much more frequently. The successor to the popular flagship-on-a-budget OnePlus 3/3T is shaping up to be another powerful device, with rumors also suggesting it will have an in vogue dual camera set-up. Now, thanks to Android Authority, we have an image of an alleged prototype to whet our appetite further.
Motorola has been doing well in the budget phone arena with its Moto G series, the fourth generation of which just launched last year. These phones are more important than ever now that the Moto X is dead (or on hiatus or whatever), but what does Moto have in store? Well, there's a guy in Romania who appears to have a Moto G5. He's (foolishly) trying to sell it online.
The 2015 Moto X Pure Edition has only been out for a few months at this point, but a new leak purports to show off its successor. The device posted on Nowhere Else (a French site) has a metal back with Motorola branding and a gigantic camera module. It doesn't look like a finished product, but phone development cycles are notoriously long.
Pixate is a tool that helps designers prototype native mobile applications without pulling their hair out. Now it's a part of Google.
The first immediate impact of this acquisition is that Pixate Studio is now free to use. You can go download the software to a Windows PC or Mac right away to create interfaces for your Android or iOS device. Then, if you want to share your prototypes with teammates online, Pixate's new cloud plan goes for $5 a month or $50 a year. The desktop software integrates seamlessly with cloud accounts.
You knew it was coming. With the Moto 360 being easily the most exciting Android Wear device from the initial video almost exactly a year ago, and then being something of a disappointment upon release thanks to its ancient chipset and not-really-360-degree "round" screen, a follow-up was inevitable. It looks like an executive from Lenovo (the new owners of Motorola Mobility) may have let the cat out of the bag on the company's next Android Wear smartwatch.
Google's self-driving car program has been one of the company's most visible and high-profile "moonshots" over the last few years. When Google showed off the primary development stages, the self-driving vehicles were basically production cars (like the Toyota Prius and Lexus SUVs) stuffed with huge amounts of robotics, communications, and processing equipment. Now the first self-driving "Google Car" prototype, built from the ground up to demonstrate the autonomous system, is complete and ready to roll out.
Google has been working on this unique prototype since before May of this year. The company plans to test its curvy new vehicle on an official Google test track, followed by tests on public roads after New Year's.
Project Ara stirred up plenty of excitement when it was first announced, and it continues to entice people with its promise of a modular and upgradeable phone. We recently learned that users will be able to hot-swap modules (excluding the CPU and screen) while the device is on thanks to a modified version of Android Lollipop.
Now Phonebloks has shared a video of Ara's porgress at NK Labs, a Massachusetts-based contractor doing a great deal of work on the project. In it, we see an updated version of the prototype demoed at Google I/O.
Towards the end of this presentation, we hear that a second prototype, known as Spiral 2, will provide more of the device's space to developers and resources.