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Watch maker Swatch looks forward to launch its own smartwatches next year, with the aim of competing for a multi-billion-dollar industry that analysts expect Samsung, Apple, and other companies to dominate in the coming years. Swatch is the largest watchmaker in the world, and hopes its new Swatch Touch - scheduled for release in 2015 - will help shake up the smartwatch market even further.
"Our first message for customers is the watch," said Nick Hayek, Swatch CEO, in a recent interview posted on Reuters. "If they like it, they might also be interested in the extra functions. It is a problem if you only define a product by its technology. Technology alone doesn't sell, not in watches."
Analysts believe Swatch could take a two percent revenue and earnings hit from potential Apple iWatch growth with each 10 market share the iWatch can capture. Swatch and Apple would be able to offer a lucrative product, but Swatch wants to continue selling fashionable watches - and not just focus on technology.
We should hear all about the iWatch on September 9 when Apple unveils its iPhone 6, but it's still rumored - nothing is confirmed yet. Re/code is now reporting that Apple executives have been discussing a price point for its first wearable, with cheaper models to be released in the future.
Re/code reports: "Apple executives have discussed charging around $400 for the company's new wearable device. Pricing has yet to be finalized for the forthcoming product, which is expected to begin shipping next year. Sources say consumers should expect a range of prices for different models including lower priced versions."
I think we'll see Apple unveil the iWatch alongside the iPhone 6, with the $400 price seeming about right for Apple. We will know much more on September 9, just over a week from now.
The Apple iWatch will reportedly be introduced during a special event on September 9, with the rumor mill and hype machine continually driving interest for the expected announcement. Apple has been under pressure to announce a new product category, with CEO Tim Cook previously stating the wrist could be an ideal place for a new Apple product.
Details regarding the iWatch remain unknown, but previous reports indicated the screen size could range from 1.3" up to 2.5" - and Apple could release multiple screen sizes to consumers. Similar to other smartwatches already available, health and fitness should be major selling points for Apple's announcement next month. However, hardware specifications and pricing details won't be known until September 9, as Apple prefers to remain secretive leading up to its events.
Most smartwatches are designed for Google Android-powered devices, and while the iWatch hype has ramped up in recent months, Apple will have to compete against Samsung, LG, and scores of other competitors in the suddenly crowded market.
Korean tech companies Samsung and LG Electronics have unveiled new smartwatches, as Apple continues to wait until an expected event next month. Companies in the smartwatch market are interested in creating fashionable watches that still have excellent connectivity and features to draw consumers in.
The LG G Watch R has a traditional watch design and the Samsung Gear S uses a curved screen. The G Watch R includes a heart rate monitor, with the watch itself using a 1.2GHz Snapdragon CPU, 4GB of storage and 512MB RAM. LG plans to release it in time for Christmas, but pricing details weren't made available.
Meanwhile, the Gear S from Samsung has a 2-inch curved Super AMOLED display, built-in GPS, 3G cellular radio, running the Tizen operating system. It's the sixth smartwatch Samsung has released in 2014 so far, indicating the company plans to remain a major force in the growing smartwatch market.
It feels like there's so much conflicting information on the iWatch right now, but according to Re/code, we should expect Apple to unveil its first wearable next to two new iPhones - which should arrive in 4.7- and 5.5-inch versions.
Apple's iWatch should feature deep integration with Apple's health tracking tools, something that will make an appearance with iOS 8. We should also see the health tools go as far as working with home automation kit HomeKit, which is something else that will reportedly arrive with Apple's next iteration of its mobile OS.
If you thought the future of first-person shooters was using a mouse and keyboard, this video will have you thinking again. Half-Life 2 + Oculus Rift + Razer Hydra motion controllers open up an entire new world, a world where my wallet is obviously not accepted through my LCD screen.
Not only is shooting in the VR world improved by many magnitudes, but the reloading of the guns is impressive, with the revolver being the highlight according to YouTuber 'Goldfish'. He explains: "You unlatch the barrel, [physically] flick it over, release the clips, put in the new ones, flick it up and then you shoot".
There's not much time until IFA 2014 kicks off, with two weeks until the event left. Some photos have popped up on Naver, showing off the new Gear VR headset from Samsung, a new VR headset that will connect up to your compatible Galaxy smartphone for some VR goodness.
We now, possibly, know the model number of the new headset: SM-R320, but other than that, we only have a few pictures to share with you today. We should see Samsung unveil, and launch the new Gear VR hardware next month, which will be compatible with the company's Galaxy S5 smartphone. Samsung's Gear VR should feature an OLED display, which should be similar, if not identical to the one found inside of the Oculus Rift DK2 unit - which is a Samsung Galaxy Note 3 panel.
The future of entertainment isn't just sitting in front of your TV watching a flat image, but it is going to be a world that wraps around you in virtual reality. This is where Jaunt steps in, a cinematic VR technology company, which just took in a new round of funding.
Jaunt received $27.8 million of new funding, which will help it pump more money into its omnidirectional camera shooting 360-degree experiences, perfect for VR technologies like the Oculus Rift. Jaunt had its funding come in from many different companies, who hope to see the company lead the future of cinematic VR.
Jaunt's technology was recently spotted at the premiere of Guardians of the Galaxy, where it was shooting 360-degree footage which can be played back through the Oculus Rift. Jens Christensen, CEO of Jaunt, says: "The enthusiasm we have seen for our technology has been tremendous and we are working tirelessly to make VR experiences available to mass audiences".
The fatal shooting of Michael Brown, and subsequent riots and unrest in Ferguson, Missouri, led to greater interest in video camera wearables for police officers.
Taser, better known for its stun gun technology, also has several wearable cameras for law enforcement officials. The company has seen a rise in sales and a 30 percent surge in its stock since the Brown incident.
"We believe the concept of using wearable cameras to provide a foundation of transparency has a tipping point," said Rick Smith, Taser CEO, in a statement to the Washington Post. "The intense emotions that arise from uncertainty and diametrically opposed conjecture about what did or did not happen in life and death encounters can tear communities apart. We believe wearable technology, like body-worn cameras, is the future for communities to relate to those entrusted to protect them."
Google has just pushed out a new firmware update to Glass, which improves the Hangouts abilities on Google's wearable device. Glass users now have the option of starting a new Hangouts session with a contact, send them an email, or message them through SMS.
Android-powered users should be receiving the update any minute now, if not already, while iOS users will have to wait until next week to update through the MyGlass app. In order to get the new functionality, users will need to update their MyGlass app, with the Android version sitting at 3.2, and the iOS version at 0.7.0.
After that, Glass users will need to update their Glass firmware, bringing it to XE20.1. Google explains its new update: "Now when you tap on one of your contacts, you can swipe between Hangouts, email or SMS - whichever strikes your fancy at that moment".