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Wearable Computing Posts - Page 3

Epic Games founder: VR will look as good as real life within 10 years

Tim Sweeney, the founder of Epic Games and the brain behind the Unreal Engine, has said that there are some insane things going on with VR right now, but a lot of them aren't being shown to the public.

 

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Sweeney was interviewed recently, where he said that he expects VR hardware and headsets to double in quality every few years for the next decade. He added that it will reach a point in around 10 years from now, that it will be hard to tell the difference between the VR world, and the real-world that surrounds you right now.

 

Oculus VR is expected to launch its first consumer-ready version of the Oculus Rift sometime this year, which I'm sure we're going to hear more about at the Game Developers Conference (GDC) which kicks off in just a couple of weeks time.

Consumers still on the fence about fitness tracker wearables

Fitness tracker wearables and mobile apps are becoming popular among consumers trying to improve their lifestyles while become healthier - but manufacturers want to drive interest in wearables.

 

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Most fitness trackers tend to vary in price from $49 for the Misfit Flash up to $250 for something like the Fitbit Surge - with additional hardware and software features being packed into the wearables.

 

Some of the mobile apps are just as accurate as their wearable counterparts, and using a smartphone is something more users are already familiar with. However, here is a bit of advice for consumers unsure if they are ready to make the plunge:

Continue reading 'Consumers still on the fence about fitness tracker wearables' (full post)

CCS Insight: Apple Watch will sell 20 million units by end of 2015

Apple will be able to rack up 20 million Apple Watch units sold by the end of the year, according to the CCS Insight analyst group.

 

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Even though an estimated 7 percent of iPhone owners with devices able to support the watch plan to buy the wearable, Apple can expect to quickly become the leading smartwatch maker. If Apple successfully sells 20 million units by the end of the year, the company would control almost one-quarter of the wearable market.

 

"This highly anticipated smartwatch will create a frenzy of demand, catapulting it almost instantaneously to be the most successful smartwatch ever," according the report. "The current love affair affluent US consumers have with the iPhone guarantees a strong start for the Apple Watch in its home market."

Continue reading 'CCS Insight: Apple Watch will sell 20 million units by end of 2015' (full post)

Apple patent teases a future VR display for the iPhone

The United States Patent & Trademark Office has granted Apple a patent that the iDevice maker filed all the way back in 2008 for a headset design that would see you use your iPhone as a VR headset.

 

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The design resembles the Galaxy Note 4-powered Gear VR, where you slot your iPhone into a device that sits on your face, where you use an external controller that helps you navigate through menus and more when motion tracking doesn't cut it. This is just a patent that Apple has filed, so we don't know if it'll turn into something just yet.

 

But judging by the amazing things Oculus VR has been able to do, all without a consumer VR product on the market, we don't think it'll be long before Apple unveils its own VR or AR headset.

Sony SmartEyeglass Developer Edition on sale, Google Glass alternative

Sony has announced its SmartEyeglass Developer Edition is available for pre-order in the UK and Germany, with sales opening up in the United States, Japan, France, Belgium, Sweden, Netherlands, Spain and Italy beginning next month.

 

 

The hands-free device superimposes images into the wearer's vision range, with Sony hoping it will be able to drive interest in the workplace. The company also was careful to create a more aesthetically pleasing product than Glass, which drew a high amount of criticism from potential wearers.

 

SmartEyeglass also uses a 3-megapixel CMOS image sensor, gyro, accelerometer, electronic compass and brightness sensor - paired with GPS data from a smartphone - to allow custom data to be shared with the wearer.

Continue reading 'Sony SmartEyeglass Developer Edition on sale, Google Glass alternative' (full post)

Apple ordered up to 6 million smartwatches, preparing for launch

Apple is anticipating big demand for its Apple Watch smartwatch, asking Asian suppliers to prepare five to six million units ready for launch in April. The company will release three models and wants to ensure there is adequate stock of each one.

 

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At least half of the production numbers will be for the Apple Sport, the company's entry-level smartwatch model, though production plans can be adjusted as needed.

 

The high-end Apple Watch Edition has seen small pre-orders to date, but Apple will produce at least one million units per month during Q2, according to sources. The watch has an 18-karat gold casing and could be extremely popular in China, as Apple products have become increasingly popular there as of late.

Continue reading 'Apple ordered up to 6 million smartwatches, preparing for launch' (full post)

LG plans to unveil its Android-powered LG Watch Urbane during MWC

Korean company LG Electronics has confirmed the LG Watch Urbane, its first all-metal Google Android Wear device, will be unveiled during Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2015 next month.

 

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The watch runs a 1.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 CPU, features a 1.3-inch P-OLED display, 4GB storage, 512MB RAM, and runs Android Wear. The stainless steel body will be available in polished silver and gold finish, attached a stitched leather strap. Additional functionality of the watch wasn't confirmed by LG, with more details expected at MWC.

 

"The LG Watch Urbane's classic design and smart features make it the perfect smartwatch to complement our G Watch and G Watch R, which were designed as more casual and active devices," said Juno Cho, president and CEO of LG Mobile Communications. "LG Watch Urbane is an important part of our strategy to develop wearable devices that are worn and viewed as everyday accessories, not electronic gadgets."

Continue reading 'LG plans to unveil its Android-powered LG Watch Urbane during MWC' (full post)

Ryanair looks to create solutions for passengers wearing smartwatches

Ryanair wants to give smartwatch wearable owners additional features, such as boarding gate information, digital boarding passes, and post-landing information. A prototype app offering will be unveiled after the Apple Watch launches in the spring, according to company officials.

 

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Additional details about the custom smartwatch offering will be released in the coming months.

 

"In the future, Ryanair wants to be able to provide information throughout a passenger's journey, from the second you go to bed in a hotel, to when you land and need to find your car, or book a taxi," said John Hurley, CTO of Ryanair, in a statement published by The Telegraph. "People want micro-moments, micro pieces of information."

Continue reading 'Ryanair looks to create solutions for passengers wearing smartwatches' (full post)

Smartphone apps able to track physical activity as good as wearables

Wearable supporters promote fitness trackers and smartwatches as valuable tools to help monitor physical activity and general health - but a new study found that most smartphone applications are just as accurate, according to researchers from the Perelman School of Medicine and the Center for Health Incentives and Behavioral Economics at the University of Pennsylvania.

 

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During a trial conducted at Penn, participants wore the following: a pedometer and two accelerometers, three wearable devices, and two smartphones (one with three apps and the other smartphone running one app. Smartphone data apps tracked step counts that were similar to one another, while the wearables provided greater variance.

 

"In this study, we wanted to address one of the challenges with using wearable devices: they must be accurate," said Meredith Case, Penn medical student and study author. "After all, if a device is going to be effective at monitoring - and potentially changing - behavior, individuals have to be able to trust the data. We found that smartphone apps are just as accurate as wearable devices for tracking physical activity."

Continue reading 'Smartphone apps able to track physical activity as good as wearables' (full post)

Android Wear powered just 720,000 of the 4.6 million wearables in 2014

Out of the 4.6 million wearable devices shipped across 2014, only 720,000 of them were powered by Android Wear according to analyst firm, Canalys.

 

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According to Canalys' data, the Moto 360 was the most popular wearable on the market. But out of those 4.6 million, Google must be feeling the pain that its Android Wear OS only powered 720,000 of those units, as it faces heavy competition from Pebble, and Samsung's Gear range of smartwatches, which runs Samsung's own OS.

 

Xiaomi shipped over 1 million units of its Mi Smartband, which is something Canalys puts down to its unique marketing campaign. LG's G Watch R had a nice sales boost over the holidays, with Samsung not igniting the wearable world as much as it most likely hoped to.

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