When it comes to autonomous vehicles that can drive themselves, Google is the name that many think of. Google isn't the only major company working in the autonomous car market though. A company called Cruise is now taking pre-orders for a product called the RP-1 that will turn two Audi car models into self-driving cars. The RP-1 product works with the Audi A4 and S4 cars.
Cruise will begin to put the RP-1 on cars early next year with pre-orders underway right now for the first 50 RP-1 units. Cruise is working on making its self-driving tech compatible with other cars, with the product dubbed a highway autopilot.
Once the driver is in a lane on the highway, they can press a button and the RP-1 system will take over control of the accelerator, brake pedals, and steering. The system can be turned off easily if the driver takes over the steering wheel or taps the throttle pedal. The Cruise RP-1 accessory costs $10,000 and straps to the roof of the car.
Whithings is the company that has rolled out some interesting health products over the years. Withings is the firm behind the web-connected scale that will share your weight loss via social media. The company is back with a new product that is part fancy Swiss watch and part activity tracker.
Unlike some activity tracking smartwatches, the Withings Activite isn't able to offer you notifications from your smartphone for calls or texts. What it is able to do is track progress towards your daily fitness goals as well as your sleep. Activite connects to iPhones only via Bluetooth and syncs data with an app running on your smartphone.
The watch has a smart alarm clock that vibrates to wake you up at the lightest point in the sleep cycle. All of the tech is packed away inside a round analog watch that looks very nice. The Withings Activite will sell for $390, comes with brown or black leather bands, and was announced this week.
Sprint has been rolling out HD Voice in markets around the US for months now and has recently announced that HD Voice is now nationwide. Sprint's HD Voice service is currently supported on 28 smartphones on the postpaid side of the network and on 33 devices on the pre-paid side. About 16 million Sprint customers have access to HD Voice enabled devices at this time.
HD Voice uses tech to minimize background noise allowing calls to be clearer. Along with nationwide HD Voice service, Sprint has also announced that it has activated new LTE networks in 28 markets Sprint now covers 471 cities with LTE.
Right now 225 million people are covered by Sprint LTE service with the carrier expecting to cover 250 million people in the US with LTE by the middle of 2014. Sprint Spark service is turned on in three new markets including St. Louis, Winston-Salem and Greensboro, N.C.
TCL has just taken the wraps off of its new Ultra HDTV lineup, with five new products for consumers to choose from. The new 4K-capable TVs are all HDMI 2.0 compliant, which means you can use HDMI for 60FPS goodness.
Starting with sizes, where we have two non 'Smart TV' models with the EU5700 series, available in 40- and 49-inch. Then we have three Smart TV models, which are all from the UH9500 Smart TV series, these are available in 55-, 65- and 85-inch. The 40-inch is priced at $499, while the 49-inch is $100 at $599.
Moving onto the 55-inch UH9500 Smart TV, which is priced at $799 - this is going to be a hot seller in the coming months at that price. The 65-inch is priced very competitively at $1,299 while the 85-inch is priced for the serious HT users at a whopping $7,999. The 40- and 49-inch models are the models TCL will be pushing for gamers, photographers, designers or people who want to display Ultra HD content from an external device.
The UH9500 series features 802.11 2x2 dual-band Wi-Fi, with the 55- and 65-inch models powered by a 1.2GHz dual-core CPU, a quad-core GPU, an advanced 120Hz refresh rate, three HDMI inputs, and two USB ports (one USB 2.0, one USB 3.0). The top-of-the-line 85-inch UH9500 series TV is powered by the same CPU and GPU, but pumps the refresh rate up to 240Hz, features enhanced audio thanks to its dual 15W speakers and Dolby Digital technology for more immersive sound.
Nintendo is struggling to compete on the gaming market of today, but it has been doing better recently with an uptick in Wii U sales thanks to the new Mario Kart game. Nintendo's Shigeru Miyamoto recently talked about a future where gamers might be able to buy one copy of a game and play it on both home consoles and portables.
Right now Nintendo's 3DS and Wii U consoles are so different that it takes games developed specifically for each console, and therefore two purchases for gamers to have the same game on each device. In the future Nintendo wants to bring together the development environments for the portable and home consoles to the point where gamers might be able to buy one game and play it on both home consoles and portables.
If you are a user of Microsoft's cloud storage service called OneDrive, Microsoft has some good news for you. That good news is more storage at no cost, and lots more storage for Office 365 users. Those who are signed up for a OneDrive account, and those who register for a new OneDrive account with their Microsoft account will now get 15GB of free storage.
Microsoft previously offered 7GB of storage at no cost. If you have an Office 365 subscription, you can get 1TB of free cloud storage at no additional cost. That Office 365 subscription costs $99 per year and gives you access to Office productivity software like Word and others.
The Russian Industry and Trade Ministry has announced plans to replace the US-made processors from companies like Intel and AMD, with its own x86-based processors. These new processors will run on a new Linux-based system, with a CPU built-in Russia called Baikal.
Baikal is being made by an electronics division of T-Platforms, a supercomputer maker, and looks to have some serious funding being pumped into it. Rosnano, a technology firm, and Rostec, a rather large defense contractor, are both chipping into the project. The first processors off the production line will feature an ARM Cortex A-57 at 2GHz, and will run both PCs and servers.
Each and every year, the Russian government reportedly purchases 700,000 PCs which costs around $500 million. On top of this, the government spends a further $300 million acquiring 300,000 servers per year. The new Baikal processors should begin replacing the Intel- and AMD-powered machines starting in early 2015.
The reason behind the change? There are many. With the NSA PRISM and GCHQ stories out there, most would believe its for espionage reasons, but it will also be helping out local companies, instead of overseas interests. On top of that, it will allow the country to better protect its freedoms from the prying, all-seeing eye of the United States.
Intel is about to launch its 16-threaded (but 8-core) processor in September, and while that is for consumers, what is being played with behind closed doors in experiments is incredibly exciting - with a new 36-core processor teased by researchers at the International Symposium on Computer Architecture.
Li-Shiuan Peh, the Singapore Research Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at MIT, has said that the future of massively multi-core processors will be more like little Internets, where every core packs a router, with data travelling between cores in packets of fixed size. Peh's group unveiled a titanic 36-core processor that features this "network-on-chip" at the event.
Today's processors are connected by a single wire, and feature between 2 and 6 cores, with the multiple cores needing to talk to each other through exclusive access to the bus. But, this way won't work as the core count increases, as the other cores will be waiting for the bus to free up, rather than performing the duties you've set it out to do. With the network-on-chip, each and every CPU core is connected only to those that are directly next to it. Bhavya Daya, an MIT graduate student in electrical engineering and computer science explains: "You can reach your neighbors really quickly. You can also have multiple paths to your destination. So if you're going way across, rather than having one congested path, you could have multiple ones".
The first smartphone to come from Microsoft since it purchased Nokia won't run the company's Windows Phone OS; rather the device will run Android. The Android interface on the Nokia X2 looks like Windows Phone, but underneath it's all Android. The X2 will offer users pre-installed apps that will hook the device into Microsoft's cloud services.
Analyst Ben Wood from CCS Insight says that he sees the Nokia X2 as an admission that Microsoft's entry-level Asha line of smartphones were unable to compete with entry-level Android devices. The Nokia X2 has a 4.3-inch screen and 1GB of RAM.
Respawn Entertainment, the studio behind Titanfall, posted a graph of its European Titanfall servers, which saw a massive dip in players when the Uruguay vs. England game kicked off.
Players were still glued to their Titan's when the Colombia vs. Cote d'Ivoire game was on, but activity dipped when the 3 goals were scored - something you can see in the chart, above. Once Uruguay and England hit the field, all bets were off, as well as Xbox One consoles. Just as Uruguay scored at the 39-minute mark, activity surged, but plummeted for the second half.
At around the 85-minute mark when Luis Suarez kicked the game-winning goal and crushed England, Titanfall activity bounced right back up.