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Wearable Computing Posts - Page 7

Google Glass is now available to all US residents

Last month, Google opened up its Glass device to US residents, for a single day. Now the search giant has opened it completely, to any US resident, meaning you can buy Google Glass right now, for $1500.

 

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Google saw an "overwhelming" response to its previous sale, but this is no consumer launch. Google is simply opening up the flood gates to its Explorer Program, with the final consumer version of Google Glass expected sometime later in the year. We should hopefully hear more about Glass at the company's Google I/O conference that kicks off on June 25.

LG released new teaser video for its Android Wear-based G Watch

LG has just released a new video teaser that showcases its upcoming G Watch, a smartwatch based on the new Android Wear distro from Google. Unlike Motorola's round Moto 360, the LG G Watch is built around a square design, making it appear like all of the smartwatches we have seen so far. This is where I feel that LG missed the mark, and think that Motorola's Moto 360 will fair far better in adoption.

 

 

LG is branding its G Watch as a premium wearable that will come in either black or gold trim, with an all metal case, and waterproof design. The company also touts the device's lightweight design, and claims that it is "ready for anything with a single charge." No information was given on when the device might actually launch, but we do know that it will arrive before the Q3 2014 is over.

Continue reading 'LG released new teaser video for its Android Wear-based G Watch' (full post)

Google Glass sold at Player's Championship golf tournament in Florida

Google is making a big play in wearables with the Glass headset. Despite wanting the device to take off, Google isn't offering the headset for sale at all times. Google recently decided to offer Glass to golfers at a tournament in Florida.

 

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The tournament is the Player's Championship where presumably the people participating in the event have the extra cash around to plunk down $1500 on a gadget like Glass on a whim. Google bundled the Glass with a free mini-camera at the event that clamps onto the golf club.

Continue reading 'Google Glass sold at Player's Championship golf tournament in Florida' (full post)

Fly like a bird with Birdly, a VR rig that lets you flap your wings

If you've ever wanted to fly, but were restricted by that little thing we all hate called 'gravity,' well then a new contraption made by students at the Zurich University of the Arts, mixed with an Oculus Rift could solve those problems.

 

 

Birdly is what it is called, with the video above showing you what it is capable of. You will lay on the apparatus, strapped to some metal wings, wearing the Oculus Rift. There is a fan that provides some faux headwind, and even a scent emitter which allows you to smell what you would when flying through the clouds.

 

Now all I need, is to strap on a cape, and lose those wings and I could do what I've always wanted: be Superman. Come on VR world, deliver.

Continue reading 'Fly like a bird with Birdly, a VR rig that lets you flap your wings' (full post)

Google Glass update XE17 is here, fixes a few bugs

Google has just pushed out a new update for Google Glass, with XE17 fixing up some bugs that its last Android 4.4-powered update delivered not too long ago.

 

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Google has released XE17 which it says fixes some bugs with Glass randomly resetting (something I personally experienced on my unit). Better yet, the search giant teases that "even more improvements are coming soon. Stay tuned".

Microsoft patent surfaces for smartwatch with fitness capability

Wearables are booming right now with more and more of the devices hitting the market all the time. Apple is constantly rumored to be working on the iWatch and a new patent has surfaced from Microsoft that shows the software giant is looking to get into the market.

 

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The patent shows a smartwatch that has heart rate monitoring and other health and fitness capabilities. It will show how many calories the wearer burns like most products out there. One interesting difference between the Microsoft smartwatch seen in the patent and others on the market is that the Microsoft product can be detached from the watchband.

Continue reading 'Microsoft patent surfaces for smartwatch with fitness capability' (full post)

Qualcomm Toq smartwatch gets Toq Talk feature

Qualcomm has added a new feature to its Toq smartwatch that users of the device might find interesting. The new feature is called Toq Talk and it is powered by Nuance voice to text technology. Toq Talk lets users of the smartwatch respond to text messaged using their voice.

 

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Nuance voice recognition text is featured in a number of products. It's rather well known for not begin all that accurate at times. Siri on iOS devices is powered by Nuance and its voice recognition engine is also used in voice systems inside some cars.

Continue reading 'Qualcomm Toq smartwatch gets Toq Talk feature' (full post)

Oculus VR announces the consumer Rift headset for 2015

Most have been wondering when we'll see the Oculus Rift headset released to consumers, with that all being thrown up in the air after Facebook acquired the VR startup. Well, that announcement has been made at the Facebook F8 developer conference.

 

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Oculus VR has said that it will release the Rift to consumers next year, but there are a few big, and good reasons why we're not getting it this year. The company is hiding an even better Rift inside the secret "Valve Room" in its Irvine, California-based HQ. Crystal Cove is the best public display of Rift so far, but this new Rift in the "special room" is reportedly even better.

 

Chris Dixon, a partner at Andreessen Horowitz, talked about this next-gen prototype, saying: "Crystal Cove is 50% of what they are running in LA. You go into a room. It's a special room. Fancier headset. ... In user testing it gets to a level of realism where almost all people feel that it's realistic". He continued: "Imagine everything you can see now, but it's a little bit pixelated. Eventually that [pixelation] will go away".

 

I'm excited to see what Oculus VR can do, but with Facebook's influence and bank account behind it, the future of VR is only just beginning.

Adidas' MiCoach Smart Run fitness tracker gets Spotify offline support

Music has become one of those must have things when it comes to what many consider a successful workout, and Adidas knows this. Today the company announced that it would be adding the ability to play Spotify offline tracks to its MiCoach Smart Run wearable fitness tracker. While the fitness tracker has had Spotify support for some time now, offline track playback was not enabled.

 

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Several websites have confirmed from Adidas that the offline functionality will be enabled and that more features will be coming to the MiCoach Run before the end of the year. Most likely the software update will arrive for users to download around the holiday season later this year. No word was given on what the new features may be, but we are sure that they will be awesome!

Google's Glass cost only $80 to build, so why does it cost $1500

While Google Glass has been regarded as a major advancement in wearable technology, the general public has been, for the most part, hesitant to purchase a pair of Google Glasses themselves. While I am sure that there are thousands of early adopters, techies, and trend followers who have dived head first into the world of Glass, the $1500 price tag makes it very hard for many consumers to swallow, including myself.

 

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According to new estimates, Google Glass is only comprised of about $80 in components which leaves one to wonder why exactly the new technology is worth the $1500 premium that Google has placed on it. Now before anyone jumps on me, I am sure that manufacturing, packaging and marketing cost are factored in as well, but at tops, I see Glass being worth only about $350-500. I also get that Google needs to recoup some of the R&D cost on Glass, but even then a $550-700 price tag would see fair.

Continue reading 'Google's Glass cost only $80 to build, so why does it cost $1500' (full post)

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