May support accessory not shipping until 2015
Even though some components are beginning to enter production, the iWatch is still in an engineering verification testing (EVT) stage and yet to undergo production verification testing (PVT), supply chain sources claim. The latter is needed before going into mass production, and the sources point out that Apple could theoretically change the design of the iWatch beforehand. In any case, it's argued that this supports the idea that the iWatch may not ship until 2015.
Best Buy discounts LG G Watch price by $50
Best Buy has cut the price of the LG G Watch by $50. One of the first Android Wear smartwatches revealed and released, recently superseded by the G Watch R, has been spotted by Android Police priced at $180 for both the black and white models. Despite the discount, it is likely the G Watch will continue to be sold for some time, most likely as a budget option compared to the round-faced stablemate's estimated $300 price tag.
DrinkMate breathalyzer adapter for Android nears Kickstarter goal
Breathlyzer adapter for Android phones, DrinkMate, is -- at the time of writing -- a few thousand dollars away from reaching its Kickstarter fundraising goal. A 1.8-inch long device, DrinkMate will plug into a powered Micro-USB port, and used in conjunction with its companion app can display a blood alcohol content rating upon use. Users blow into its air inlet, removing the need for a mouthpiece, and the app compensates for impairment-related misreadings by ensuring the readings are taken long enough after the last drink. Data is intended to be visible and sharable, as to promote safety-related peer pressure. Those interested in backing DrinkMate's Kickstarter can make a pledge starting at $25 to later receive the device.
Two wearable devices may be launched at IFA this week
Sony's alleged update to its SmartWatch range may have surfaced, with the possibility of two launches rather than one. A render has surfaced showing the SmartWatch 3, though it is accompanied by what is believed to be a new fitness tracker called the SmartBand Talk, with the two potentially launching at IFA this coming week.
Electronista and MacNN Weekly deals for August 29, 2014
Once again, its time for Friday Deals! Every Friday, we're going to take a look at current sales, and bring you what we think are some of the best bargains on prime apps, gadgets, and peripherals for you, the discriminating MacNN and Electronista reader. All prices are verified at the time of publication, but any sales may not be valid if you're reading a few days down the line. Check pricing before you click buy! As this is a big back-to-school sale week (plus PAX!), we're expecting more deals on things -- check back often over the weekend!
Delay said to be analogous to launch of first-gen iPhone
While Apple may show off the iWatch at its September 9 event, the product won't ship for several months, sources tell Re/code's John Paczkowski. He suggests that the product could ship as late as early 2015, missing the critical holiday season. The delay is likened to the first iPhone, which was announced in January 2007 but didn't ship until that summer, although Paczkowski comments that the delay won't necessarily be that long.
Updated handheld Nintendo consoles shipping to US, Europe next year
Nintendo is updating its existing 3DS handheld game console, by producing two new versions. Called the New Nintendo 3DS and the New Nintendo 3DS LL, the dual-screen gaming systems offer few in the way of major changes to the existing formula, though both notably add a second analog "C-stick" on the right-hand side, next to Super Nintendo-colored buttons.
LG expected to announce suspension of plasma display production in future
LG may be preparing to exit the plasma television market, a report claims. The manufacturer is said to be experiencing a reduced demand for its plasma display panel (PDP) televisions, with LG expected to announce its suspension of production in the near future as it moves its focus onto other display technologies, such as OLED panels.
Teaser video suggests automated Dyson cleaner using 360-degree camera
A video teaser from Dyson suggests the company is preparing to launch its first robotic vacuum cleaner. A video hinting at a launch on September 4th for N223 provides quite a few clues that it will be some form of automated cleaner, though it is not entirely clear if it will be in a similar vein to devices offered by current market leader Roomba.
Second LG Android Wear smartwatch has round face, heart rate monitor
LG has surprisingly revealed its round-faced Moto 360-like smartwatch ahead of next week's IFA trade show. The G Watch R follows on from the original G Watch launched in July, though instead of a square display of the original, LG has exchanged it for a circular Plastic OLED (P-OLED) screen, measuring 1.3 inches across and with a resolution of 320x320.
Gear S smartwatch can operate independently from smartphone with own 3G connection
Samsung has unveiled a new Gear smartwatch and earphones before its Unpacked event at IFA. The Gear S updates the original device's bulky design into a slimline and stylish smartwatch with a curved two-inch 360x480 Super AMOLED display, though unlike the Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo, this edition adds the SIM card and 3G connection from the rumored Gear Solo, allowing it to work independently from a smartphone.
Device said to exploit HealthKit, HomeKit
Apple is planning to announce the long-speculated iWatch health and fitness wearable at its September 9 iPhone event, rather than in October as was originally anticipated, says Re/code's John Paczkowski. It's not clear whether Apple accelerated its schedule, or if October was just a speculative rumor. In any case, the iWatch is expected to exploit not just HealthKit -- Apple's health and fitness tracking platform -- but HomeKit, designed to unify home automation technology.
Kobo gives Aura H2O a 1430x1080 6.8-inch touchscreen display, water protection
Kobo has unveiled an update to its Aura e-book reader, one which allows the e-reader to fend off the occasional splash of water. The Aura H2O is claimed to be the first of its kind to be IP67 certified for water and dust-proofing, meaning it can survive being submerged at a depth of 1 meter (3 feet) for up to 30 minutes.
Report claims round Samsung Gear smartwatch in development
Samsung may be preparing to join the ranks of LG and Motorola, by developing a round-faced smartwatch. A report claims the company is working on the device, though despite the expected appearance of the Moto 360 and a new round LG G Watch at IFA, it is unclear when or even if Samsung will be bringing the device to market.
Coin extends card replacement beta to more users, removes extra cost
Digital credit card replacement start-up Coin has changed the requirements for its extended beta trial, as part of an apology for its heavily-delayed release. A message to backers advises it is extending the beta from 10,000 backers to 15,000 backers, and by making it available at no cost, it is also effectively removing the $30 "fee" for taking part in the trial.
New teaser trailer indicates a traditional watch design, could be called LG G Watch R
After prior reports surfaced that pointed to a new smartwatch coming this September from South Korea-based manufacturer LG, new details were released by the company today about what consumers can look forward to. The company posted a video to YouTube, teasing the release of "a perfect circle" device coming to the IFA trade show on September 5.
New device would receive video streamed from Windows Phone, PCs
Microsoft appears to be in the process of developing a Google Chromecast-like device. Filings with the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) show the software giant to be at least considering a HDMI dongle with Wi-Fi and a USB port, using Miracast to send content from a Windows device in a manner similar to Apple's Airplay. The device would fill an unserved market, with AirPlay only on iOS and OS X devices, and Google Cast on Android, iOS, and web apps.
Coin asks backers to test card before public launch
Payment startup Coin is expanding its base of testers for its digital credit card replacement from 1,000 to 11,000 people. The crowd-funded project, which consists of a plastic card with a screen capable of storing various payment card details and can be swiped at ATMs and payment terminals, is attempting to fix as many issues as possible before it makes the card publicly available.
ESPN creates Scores app for sporting update on Pebble smartwatch
ESPN has released an app for the Pebble smartwatch, providing results for various sporting events. The Scores app includes results from the NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL, college football, and college basketball, and will vibrate to notify the wearer about game updates. The app is now available to download from the Pebble App Store for iOS and Android.
PSBCG90 Smart Bicycling Computer launched by Pyle Audio
Pyle Audio has announced the availability of its new tracking computer device for cyclists, the PSBCG90 Smart Bicycling Computer. Offering cyclists the ability to track their performance, map locations and plan new, chartered routes, the device can connect to one's computer for the purpose of saving training data records. The computer device features software that includes Google Maps, as well as GPS navigation assistance.
Co-branded Samsung tablet adds Nook software features
Samsung and Barnes & Noble has released its first co-branded tablet, as the retailer migrates away from hardware production and into partnering with other manufacturers. The Galaxy Tab 4 Nook is a rebranded version of Samsung's existing Tab 4 tablet, though while the hardware is the same as the original device, the software has been customized with some Nook-specific changes, including access to the Nook store.
Digital magazine newsstand adds batch downloading feature
Zinio, a digital magazine newsstand platform, has released an update for its iOS app. Users can read magazine issues as soon as they are available, and sync their library offline and across devices. Zinio v2.8 features batch downloading, meaning that multiple magazines can be queued to download. Magazine thumbnails now appear larger in one's Library, and featured articles from Explore can be shared more easily via Facebook, Twitter or by email.
Twitter post shows outline of rumored Asus smartwatch
Asus has started to tease the launch of its smartwatch, ahead of an event taking place at IFA on September 3rd. The image on the Asus Twitter account gives a small glimpse of the device, with the shape of one side suggesting it will be using a square display instead of a circular version, despite it having rounded corners on its face.
New tablets feature curated content for children, full Android for adults
Creator of the kid-friendly Nabi tablet, Fuhu has now unveiled the Nabi Big Tab HD 20-inch and Nabi Big Tab HD 24-inch, the world's biggest Android tablets. The very large form-factor tablets are designed around "social interaction, communication, collaboration, and socialized learning," according to the company.
Roku TV takes software from set-top box for smart TV functions
The first smart televisions running on Roku OS are heading to market. The Roku TV, ranges created by TCL and Hisense originally announced at CES in January, uses similar software to drive its smart TV functionality as the Roku set-top box, giving users a simplified interface and access to a selection of over 1,500 streaming channels offering over 200,000 movies and TV shows.
New projectors deliver 3000 lumens, designed for ambient light
Projector manufacturer Epson today introduced two new EX Pro series projectors, delivering high brightness and advanced connectivity options, including built-in wireless projection and Mobile High-Definition Link (MHL) support. The new EX7235 Pro and EX7230 Pro are designed for meeting rooms with ambient light, and deliver WXGA resolution for widescreen HD presentations, 3,000 lumens of color light output, and 3,000 lumens of white light output.
KitSound releases new DAB radio alarm clock
KitSound has announced the release of its new radio alarm clock, the Revive. Featuring a dual-alarm function with the option of waking with music or a buzzer, the Revive includes both FM radio and digital stations. The clock can run on battery or connected to a power source, allowing for portability if desired. Available in black or blue, the Revive radio alarm clock is priced at $65.
Second LG smartwatch launch touted months after original released
LG may have a second Android Wear smartwatch being prepared for launch, according to a report. Months after the G Watch went on sale in the United States, the electronics manufacturer is allegedly looking to launch a follow-up of the wrist-based device at IFA next month, with the device said to have a number of upgrades compared to the existing model.
Texas Instruments processor claimed to power Moto 360
More details for the Moto 360 have surfaced, ahead of its expected launch early next month alongside two smartphones. A product listing for the Android Wear smartwatch appeared on the Best Buy website before being pulled from view, and provided not only a full list of specifications for the wearable device, but also confirmed that it will launch at $249.
Listing added for new version, reportedly increased memory from 2 to 4 GB
It appears that Amazon recently began directing consumers looking for a Kindle Paperwhite to a new version of the popular e-reader. The listing modification had occurred with what appeared to be no changes in the e-reader. As it turns out, a minor change did take place in the amount of storage that is included in the unit.
StretchWrite stylus grip converts any pen for tablet use
Felix has announced the release of a new stylus grip for pens and pencils, titled the StretchWrite. Comprised of a thin, hollow-point stylus tip, the StretchWrite converts writing tools by fitting over top of the tip through the hole on its top end. Each order includes a pair of stylus tips in either a red/gray or blue/pink combination. Priced at $10, StretchWrites are available online.
Blackberry launches 1.1 version of BBM for Windows Phone
BlackBerry has officially released BBM for Windows Phone, taking it out of beta. The new release implementes a number of bug fixes and speed improvements that the company gathered during the beta phase. The 1.1 version of the app allows users to engage in BBM Chats with one or many contacts, with the ability to share pictures, voice notes, contacts and location. Features like BBM Voice, Channels, and location sharing are still yet to be added.
New 5.1 surround sound gaming headset features 8 drivers
Tesoro Technology has released its new true 5.1 surround sound gaming headset. The Kuvέη's fully customizable control of every channel offers wearers precise sound, suitable for tactical gaming. The headset includes a subwoofer, center speaker and one rear speaker. Each channel can be customized via the removable in-line control, which also allows for the microphone or speaker to be instantly turned off. Its unidirectional noise-cancelling microphone blocks out noise, and a virtual 7.1 surround sound audio mode is available.
SMS Audio BioSport headphones feeds back heart rate to mobile app
Intel has partnered with SMS Audio, the headphone company by rapper 50 Cent, to develop headphones designed for fitness tracking. The BioSport In-Ear Headphones includes a built-in optical heart rate monitor, one which continuously collects data about the wearer's pulse as they go through intense exercise or a relaxation routine.
Sony SmartWatch 3 allegedly includes Wi-Fi connection for standalone usage
Sony's latest iteration in its SmartWatch range will have a higher resolution but a similar design language to the SmartWatch 2, according to a rumor. The SmartWatch 3 will continue to have a rectangular display, and will also use the same transflective LCD technology, one that relies more on ambient light than a backlight, in order to save battery life.
Company specialized in Apple accessories, reseller distribution
Veteran Apple and Macintosh accessory reseller Dr. Bott is closing its doors after 15 years in the business, and offering discounts on its remaining stock to liquidate its inventory. The Wilsonville, Oregon-based company, which acted as both a vendor and distributor of its own and other companies' products, said it was "sad to announce" the closure, but did not elaborate on the reasons behind it.
Invitation depicts four devices, suggesting multiple Motorola launches
Motorola is preparing to hold an event in Chicago on September 4th, according to invitations sent to members of the media. Though light on detail, the invitation depicts an animated paper fortune teller showing four images, suggesting the smartphone producer could potentially have four devices launching at the event at the same time.
Fitness tracker from Toshiba uses small module with interchangeable wristband
Toshiba is joining the ranks of companies producing wearable devices, by creating its own fitness band. The WERAM1100 uses a simplistic design of a small sensor block embedded inside an interchangeable rubber wristband, similar to the Sony SmartBand's construction, with the device able to perform typical fitness tracker monitoring functions.
LG updates earlier Wi-Fi G Pad 8.0 with LTE connectivity
A few months after launching its G Pad range, LG has started to ship one of the tablets with LTE connectivity built in. The LG G Pad 8.0 LTE is identical to the earlier Wi-Fi variant in terms of specification and functionality, except for the inclusion of LTE radios, and comes shortly after AT&T announced it would be selling the LTE-equipped 7-inch model.
Gear VR photo shows Oculus Rift-inspired design of Samsung headset
A photograph of Samsung's upcoming virtual reality headset has leaked. The image of the headset, codenamed "Project Moonlight" but appearing in a previous leak under the "Gear VR" name, appears to depict a device which combines aspects of the Oculus Rift design with that of Google Cardboard, into a VR headset which reuses an existing smartphone.
Hue Pro 10,000 mAh external battery released, can simultaneously charge two devices
JunoPower has released the Hue Pro, a new external battery capable of charging two devices simultaneously. The 10,000mAh battery features a brushed aluminum casing, with a built-in LCD screen that displays how much power is left and when recharging it is required. Its high-powered LED flashlight offers an additional functionality, suitable for outdoor or emergency use.
Does the Jongo speaker ecosystem stand out in a crowded field?
Multi-room audio compatibility is a key metric for wireless sound systems these days. The entry cost into a house-spanning system can be problematic for many buyers, with many mid-range systems costing many thousands of dollars for even a small installation. Pure has a solution -- the Jongo speaker system. We've lived with a few Jongo T2 speakers for a while now. How well does the system perform, and when up against higher-end competitors, how does it stand up? Read our review to find out!
Low-cost seven-day pass for streaming service accompanied by day pass price cut
British satellite broadcaster Sky has updated the pricing for Sky Sports on its Now TV streaming device, making it a more-attractive proposition to casual viewers. A new week-long pass is being introduced from this Thursday, allowing viewers to watch for seven days in a row, while the currently-offered 24-hour streaming pass is also receiving a price cut.
Power On youth access initiative launches for LGBTQ teens
Straight But Not Narrow, The Trevor Project and Human I-T have announced a joint initiative to provide LGBTQ youth access to computers and online resources. Entitled "Power On", the initiative will run until LGBT Spirit Day on October 17, with the organizations encouraging donations of laptops, tablets and smartphones for distribution to LGBTQ resources centers throughout the US. The aim of the project is to provide youth with access to the Internet for the purpose of being more readily connected to peer support regarding sexual and gender identities. Donated devices will be refurbished by Human I-T.
Repeatedly-delayed Meta M1 soon to reach customer hands
Meta Watch has finally put the Meta M1 smartwatch up for preorder, after several delays. The long-in-development smartwatch, designed by Frank Nuovo and his Nuovo design studio, is said to start shipping this September, with the eight different finishes of the device ranging in price starting from $249, rising upward to $449.
Leaks suggest 64-bit Tegra processor in rumored HTC-produced Nexus tablet
Multiple leaks suggest HTC's rumored tablet is still on the way, and could be announced soon. Codenamed T1, but previously named as Volantis and Flounder, the device is believed to be a new Nexus tablet, possibly the Nexus 8 or Nexus 9, with the device apparently spotted on South Korean communications regulator RRA's website passing certification.
Standalone Samsung smartwatch could be unveiled next month
The Gear Solo, a rumored standalone smartwatch in the Samsung Gear range, may be announced next month before the IFA tradeshow, according to a report. It is believed the company will use its Unpacked event on September 3rd to show the watch alongside other expected smartphone launches, including the Galaxy Note 4 and the Galaxy Alpha.
Campaign provides plus whole-home integration of audio
Welcome to this Thursday's Crowdfunding Critic here on MacNN and Electronista! We promised that every Tuesday and Thursday we'd highlight a new crowdfunded project -- this week's campaign is the Lightfreq LED light bulb with what the company calls HD audio. We aren't endorsing projects, nor have we been compensated to write about them -- everything we talk about is just something we think might be interesting to our readers. As with all crowdfunding campaigns, even funded projects come with risk, so do your research before you commit!
New device said to be akin to GPS for new parents
The "Internet of Things" has expanded to childcare. The Sproutling wearable baby monitor has commenced pre-orders today, sending information on a child's heart rate, skin temperature, motion, and sleep position to a parent's mobile device. The associated charger gives yet more information, providing environmental data to parents in real time.
Withings aiming for Activité smartwatch release in October
Withings is aiming to put its Activité smartwatch on sale in October, CEO Cédric Hutchings has revealed. At the same time as advising to Wareable about the updated release schedule for the wrist-based device, Hutchings highlighted the stylish and minimal design of the Activite compared to other smartwatches, claiming "We found that wearables were not that wearable." The Withings Activité will apparently cost around $500 at launch.