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Strap an iPad to your face with AirVR for mobile VR

Samsung may have Oculus powering its Gear VR headset, but what about Apple users? Fear not, as AirVR has just hit Kickstarter, requesting $20,000 in funds to convert your iPad mini (Retina) or iPhone 6 Plus into a VR headset.

 

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All you have to do is slot in your Retina iPad mini or iPhone 6 Plus into the AirVR, something that costs just $49, for portable, iOS-powered VR goodness. Metatecture is behind AirVR, which will go on sale 'early 2015'. The Kickstarter campaign explains: "AirVR brings the magic of Virtual Reality with you everywhere you go. Ditch the tangle of cables and experience VR anywhere in the world".

The rumors of the Apple Watch 2 have begun, before Watch is released

When Apple announced its first wearable, Watch, people were excited for a good reason. It's Apple's first wearable, and it is a great offering in the same-old-same-old wearable market we see materializing in front of us right now. Well, now there's rumors of the Watch 2, already.

 

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Reuters is behind the rumor, talking with its "insider sources" on the upcoming successor to Watch, Watch 2. Reuters' sources say that development of Watch 2 is well under way, but beyond that there's not much to report on. Health and fitness activities will continue to be the cornerstone of the Watch, and its successor, which is something we can take away from this.

 

Apple seem to be covering the entry into the smartwatch market with Watch, with its successor probably drilling into the areas it does well, and improving on the things it doesn't. Health and medical experts aren't too sold on Watch right now, but Apple is probably taking all of their opinions and recommendations on board, mixing it into the melting pot for Watch 2. But the question remains: with the rumors of a successor to the Watch being talked about months before Watch is even released, would most people skip Watch to wait for Watch 2?

Oculus to release its consumer-ready VR headset in beta form in 2015

We're much closer to see Oculus VR to release its consumer version of its Rift VR headset compared to before, but some of us may get early access of those VR headsets as the company plans for a public beta of these units by April 2015.

 

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As one would expect from a beta, the distribution of these units will be very limited to a certain number of users initially. Its assumed that Oculus is going to use this opportunity to check if the consumers will be interested to own such a headset by having a limited launch. It is said that Oculus will send its public BETA headsets in the similar way how Google launched its public beta for Google Glass. The criteria to qualify for getting a public beta headset is unknown for now.

 

The specification of these consumer-final version has significant improvements over the Oculus Rift Dev Kit 2 version. The consumer version will have a significant increase in resolution compared to the dev kit's 1080p. To add further, the refresh rate is expected to be 90Hz or higher. As one would expect, Oculus really wants its Rift headset to provide the best virtual-reality experience you can provide.

Continue reading 'Oculus to release its consumer-ready VR headset in beta form in 2015' (full post)

Apple teases 'one more thing', announces the Watch

For over a year, rumors have circulated about Apple's iWatch, but now we know the official deal: it's the Watch. No 'i', just Watch. Tim Cook has just unveiled it, with Watch featuring a square display with curved edges, and much more. Watch requires the iPhone, as it will not work with any other device.

 

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Cook said: "An entirely new product. We believe this product will redefine what people expect from its category. I am so excited and I am so proud to share it with you this morning." Watch will be available in silver, gold and an 18-karat gold edition. Different straps will be offered for Watch, too.

 

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When Cook announced Watch, he said that "Apple Watch is the most personal device we've ever created". But Watch isn't just a watch, it is "also a comprehensive health and fitness device".

Continue reading 'Apple teases 'one more thing', announces the Watch' (full post)

Samsung Gear VR available for pre-order, priced at $249

A few days ago we were introduced to the Samsung Gear VR headset, a mobile VR headset that is powered by the Galaxy Note 4 smartphone. Oculus VR, the makes of the Oculus Rift, were instrumental in the design, technology and path of the Gear VR, but now you can pre-order the headset for yourself, at $249.

 

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The Gear VR uses the 5.7-inch QHD Super AMOLED panel as its display, which should provide a clearer picture than the Full HD-based Oculus Rift DK2 unit. The pre-orders were spotted on Mobile Fun, with the retailer defining itself as a 'Samsung Authorized Dealer'. We don't know when Gear VR will launch, but I think we'll see the start of it next month.

Intel unveils MICA smart high-tech, luxury smart bracelet to consumers

Intel has unveiled the My Intelligence Communication Accessory (MICA), a luxury smart bracelet that will be available at Barney's in time for Christmas. The bracelet has water snakeskin and semi-precious gems in a design that features a touchscreen display for wearers to interact with.

 

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The only hardware features currently available from Intel is that it includes a 3G cellular radio. However, it will support SMS messaging, messages sent to the bracelet and calendar reminders from your mobile phone.

 

"The wearables market currently exists in two categories - sports wearables that track performance and wearables that are pretty much a cell phone crammed into a small space," said Aysegul Ildeniz, Intel new devices VP, in a recent interview. "We have to grow the pie collectively. We need to go after audiences not addressed currently by wearables and make them much more aesthetically pleasing."

Continue reading 'Intel unveils MICA smart high-tech, luxury smart bracelet to consumers' (full post)

We got hands-on with the new Samsung Gear VR headset at IFA 2014

Samsung unveiled its Gear VR headset at IFA 2014 yesterday, its new VR headset that it worked closely with Oculus VR on. The Gear VR requires the newly-announced Galaxy Note 4 smartphone to work, with our man on the ground at IFA 2014 taking a closer look.

 

 

One of the big benefits of the Gear VR is that it is completely wireless, compared to the multiple cables that require the Oculus Rift to work. There's one that is strapped to the Rift itself, then multiple other cables that need plugging in (two from the positional tracking camera), one for power, and a USB port.

Continue reading 'We got hands-on with the new Samsung Gear VR headset at IFA 2014' (full post)

We go hands-on with the new ASUS ZenWatch at IFA 2014

Our man on the ground at IFA 2014 is Johannes Knapp, who has just had some hands, or wrist-on time with the new ASUS ZenWatch. His video is below, and below that we'll have a quick recap on what the ZenWatch is made of.

 

 

Knapp notes in the video that it looks and feels like a good quality watch, where it's quite thin, too. We have a 1.63-inch 320x320 AMOLED display, a 369mAh battery, a Snapdragon 400 processor and a price tag of $260.

Continue reading 'We go hands-on with the new ASUS ZenWatch at IFA 2014' (full post)

Oculus VR announces the Samsung Gear VR Innovator Edition

Samsung only unveiled the Galaxy Note 4 and Gear VR at IFA 2014 a few moments ago, with the Gear VR "Powered by Oculus". Oculus VR has just announced the new Samsung Gear VR Innovator Edition, which is a new mobile VR headset powered by the Galaxy Note 4 smartphone.

 

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The Gear VR was "created by Samsung and powered by Oculus" and over the "last 12 months, we've been collaborating with Samsung on the future of mobile virtual reality," according to Oculus. The Facebook-owned VR startup continues: "The project actually began as an experiment to see if great VR was possible on next-generation mobile hardware. Oculus CTO John Carmack and the mobile team at Oculus were able to blow everyone away in an extremely short amount of time, quickly proving that we were on to something special."

 

The Galaxy Note 4's internal GPU and CPU to power Gear VR, using the 2560x1440 low-persistence 5.7-inch AMOLED panel as its display. John Carmack's role as the CTO of Oculus VR is becoming more clear, as he has worked with the mobile team at Oculus on Gear VR. The year was spent between developing a new Oculus Mobile SDK, as well as optimizing Android and the GPU drivers for VR.

Continue reading 'Oculus VR announces the Samsung Gear VR Innovator Edition' (full post)

Samsung announces Gear VR, works with Galaxy Note 4

Something that wasn't too much of a surprise, but is an interesting new step for Samsung, is the just-announced Gear VR. Samsung has been rumored to have been working on a VR headset for a while now, but it is now official.

 

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The South Korean electronics giant has teased that Gear VR works with the just-announced Galaxy Note 4 smartphone, which features a 5.7-inch 2560x1440 display, so it'll be interesting to see what Gear VR looks like against the Oculus Rift DK2 which features a 1920x1080 display.

 

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The one big note here is that the Gear VR doesn't work with any other smartphone other than the Galaxy Note 4. The Note 4 will snap into the Gear VR, in front of dual-lenses that provide the 3D effect in the VR headset. There's a trackpad and back button on the right side of the Gear VR, with most of the movements and menu navigation to be performed through head movements and taps on the side-mounted trackpad. The Verge has already enjoyed some hands-on time with Gear VR, with some shots of the Gear VR teasing "Powered by Oculus".

Continue reading 'Samsung announces Gear VR, works with Galaxy Note 4' (full post)

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