Samsung has officially unveiled its new Galaxy Note 9 smartphone but that wasn't all the South Korean giant unveiled during its NYC-based Unpacked event, with a new standalone smart speaker unveiled.
Galaxy Home is the latest smart speaker to join the ranks dominated by Google, Amazon and others and it looks radically different, but still feels like home. Samsung's new Galaxy Home kind of looks like a mini-BBQ or fireplace, with a mix of a cauldron that a witch would use to make spells to hurt iPhone sales. But don't let its unique looks deceive you, it's what's on the inside that counts.
Inside, Samsung's new Galaxy Home features AKG, full-range speakers and a subwoofer that will give you some great bass. Samsung has designed the Galaxy Home for wherever-you-go music, where it will use SoundSteer to direct the music towards you. For your convenience, Samsung is tapping not just Bixby but Spotify to keep your audio listening experience at its peak.
Logitech has announced it will be acquiring Blue Microphones for a cool $117 million in an all-cash deal, which will see the microphone maker behind Snowball and Yeti joining the ranks of Logitech.
The company took a blog post and said: "For Logitech, this is a new space. But, at the same time, it's not at all. Gamers are already using our Logitech G webcams to stream. People are video calling with friends and family thanks to Logitech every day. And in business, our audio and video know-how is apparent every time a video meeting takes place at the office. Joining up with Blue and their microphone lines is a logical adjacent opportunity with great synergies".
Blue Microphones was founded in 1995 and make microphones starting from $60 right up to studio-grade microphones worth a huge $4000. Blue is infamous with musicians, podcasters, streamers, and everyone in-between who want high-quality microphones that blow their built-in microphones away. Logitech secures one of the best in this acquisition, so it'll be interesting to see what they do from here.
SteelSeries has just unveiled two new high-end gaming headsets in a family of "Arctis Pro" products, with the Arctis Pro family consisting of three variants.
The flagship SteelSeries Arctis Pro gaming headset rocks 96kHz, 24-bit "Hi-Res" audio quality if you're plugged into the included GameDAC breakout box. The flagship Arctis Pro gaming headset also includes RGB lighting, and will work on both the PC and PS4.
SteelSeries has a base Arctis Pro model that doesn't include the GameDAC breakout box, and knocks the audio from 96kHz down to 40kHz, but still includes the Hi-Res audio side of things. We should expect CD-quality audio, which is nothing to scoff at, but if you want the best you're going to go with the higher-end Arctis Pro headset. The mid-range model doesn't work with the PS4, but keeps its RGB lighting.
Qualcomm has just unveiled the next leap in wireless earbud technology with their new TrueWireless Stereo and TrueWireless Stereo Plus products, packed with the latest in Bluetooth tech.
The new TrueWireless Stereo products are completely wireless, with the two earbuds connecting to each other over Bluetooth, versus other wireless earbuds that are connected to each other with a cable but wireless to your smartphone.
Qualcomm's TrueWireless Stereo will connect to your phone and blast L+R audio to the first earbud, and then use Bluetooth to transfer the second channel of sound. TrueWireless Stereo Plus on the other hand blasts the signal in half to each individual earbud.
The company is using their latest low-power Bluetooth SoC which will improve the battery life of wireless earbuds based on Qualcomm's TrueWireless Stereo technology.
Jason Colon was at the gym on February 8 when he noticed that smoke was whispering out of his Apple AirPods, where he took them out of ears after which there were signs of "flame damage."
The left AirPod had no damage, but the other one was cooked, with Colon saying "I don't know what would've happened to my ear. But I'm sure that since it hangs down, it could've been [my] ear lobe, you know, my ear lobe could've been burnt". He added that there were also signs of "flame damage."
Apple Insider reports that the burn residue inside of the damaged AirPods looks similar to what would be caused by an overheating battery, so the battery inside of Colon's AirPods could've been damaged and hurt other parts inside of the earpod. Apple has said that teh company is looking into the matter, and that they are going to get in contact with Colon.
Creative Technology have released the Aurora Reactive SDK. This tool effectively converts the Aurora Reactive Lighting System that is featured with Sound BlasterX products into an open platform, allowing developers to customize, animate and synchronize lighting behavior to add another layer of customization with their products.
The SDK will come complete with sample codes, an API library, and documentation that allows even novice programmers to get started. This gives developers greater creative control to fully immerse the user by programming various lighting behavior modes. Lighting can reflect in-game scenarios by turning red the user is hurt, turn orange when attacking an enemy, or breathe with when searching for an enemy, the possibilities are endless.
Developers can download the Aurora Reactive SDK from here with Creative released monthly performance update patches with improved features and functionality. Current supported products include Sound BlasterX Katana, Sound BlasterX Vanguard K08 keyboard, Sound BlasterX Siege M04 gaming mouse, Sound Blaster AE-5 PCIe DAC and Sound BlasterX Kratos S5 2.1 USB gaming speakers
TUNAI Creative has announced their new DRUM earphones, something they call the High-Resolution Bass Enhanced Audiophile Earphone.
DRUM has been engineered from the ground up to provide great sound across the audio spectrum, with the company saying the DRUM earphones deliver "clear, high-end, rich mid-range, and powerful bass. It gets you as close to perfect sound as our environment permits".
TUNAI Creative is looking to raise $15,000 on Kickstarter to get their new DRUM earphones into consumers' ears, and at the price they're selling DRUM... it'll be an easy pledge goal to hit. Get this: TUNAI have their Super Early Bird special where if you pledge just $9, you get a pair of DRUM earphones. The MSRP for DRUM is $39.99, so this is saving $30 - crazy.
Inside, DRUM has some of the latest high-quality components from Japan Audio Society (JAS), providing the perfect mix of performance, features, and great value. We have 13mm dynamic drivers which deliver a wide soundstage and powerful base.
TUNAI has used an "ultra-thin speaker diaphragm constructed from 8 micrometre aerospace quality PET, facilitating lightning-fast response times in the speakers and extend frequency range to 40,000Hz. It provides performance exceeding the requirements of digital audio sources".
- Driver Unit: 13mm dynamic
- Diaphragm: 8um aerospace grade PET
- Frequency Response (Hz): 10 - 40,000Hz
- Sensitivities (dB/mW): 105 dB/mW
- Impedance: 35 ohms (1 kHz)
- Cord material: OFC, Oxygen free copper
- Cord Type: Y type, round cord
- Cord length: 3.3ft / 100cm
- Plug: Four-conductor gold-plated L-shaped stereo mini jack
- Wearing style: Inner ear
- Color options: Shadow Black, Sterling Silver, Shine Orange, Meadow Green and Turkish Blue
TUNAI is hoping to have the second pilot production run complete by November, with the mass production and delivery of DRUM earphones to Kickstarter backers in late November.
Jaybird have announced their first, completely wireless sports headphone, the Jaybird RUN sport headphones. With collaboration with some of the top runners in the world, the Jaybird RUN offers a lightweight and compact set of headphones designed for physical activities without compromising sound quality.
"Jaybird RUN is inspired by our athletes, and tested and built with the runner in mind who listens to music or podcasts and wants to feel as free as possible," said Jeff Taylor, Jaybird athlete and partnership manager. "Being runners ourselves, we understand how bulky headphones can get in the way. The Jaybird RUN compact form factor fits securely and delivers music without a single wire. We've perfected the Jaybird RUN experience, so you'll forget you're wearing them, and we're excited to share them with runners everywhere."
Offering physical features that include sweat proofing, water resistance and interchangeable tips and fins for different ear sizes, Jaybird RUN also allows for connectivity via Bluetooth technology and provides 12 hours of portable battery life. One intuitive control-button allows to take calls, start and stop music, skips tracks and activates Siri or Google Assistant.
Xiaomi has launched two new devices, the Mi X5 and the Mi AI Speaker.
Xiaomi's AI speaker includes a six-microphone array for echo cancellation and voice control and is designed to be the hub for all of Xiaomi's smart home products. The speaker works like Amazon Echo, meaning you can ask it questions, play music, or set reminders.
Using a companion app, you will be able to install add-ons to bring additional features to Mi AI over time.
Logitech has just announced it is buying gaming headset maker Astro in a deal worth $85 million, with the two making it official next month.
Ujesh Desai, VP and GM of Logitech G brand said that Astro's console-oriented gaming headsets will be a "perfect compliment to Logitech G's focus on PC gaming". Logitech has released a press release talking about the Astro acquisition, where they said: "With the addition of Astro, we're investing in an adjacent gaming market - the console gaming market - to help accelerate the long-term growth of our gaming business. In FY 2018, we expect the acquisition of Astro to add approximately two points of growth to the to p line, and to be slightly dilutive to the bottom line in the first year, as we integrate the business and invest to expand Astro internationally".
Astro co-founder and president Jordan Reiss has talked about the acquisition of his company by Logitech, where he said: "The whole team at Astro has always held Logitech and Logitech G products in the highest regard, so I'm ecstatic we are joining forces. Astro's brand strength combined with Logitech G's unrivaled technology and global distribution network is going to bring our products to even more gamers around the world".