I never really took the whole wearable computing thing seriously until Samsung invited me (and a whole bunch of other journalists) out to lunch and slapped a Galaxy Gear on my wrist. After 48 hours with the product, I knew the company was onto something. But it isn’t the Gear that gets all the press these days, it’s the Pebble. After launching on Kickstarter, the Pebble has become synonymous with the term “wearable computing”, and today it’s just got an update.
Author Archives: Stefan Constantinescu
Xiaomi is a tiny Chinese handset maker that prides itself on making highly affordable devices, selling them online, and creating an Android skin called MIUI. Lei Jun, the CEO of Xiaomi, often gets called the Steve Jobs of China because he’s copied both Jobs’ look and the presentation style. And in a recent interview, Jun called the iPhone the best phone on the planet.
The Bluetooth Special Interest Group has just announced that they’ve created a new Bluetooth standard, version 4.1. For those who don’t care about Bluetooth all that much, you should, because devices like smart watches, health trackers, and who knows what sort of sensors that have yet to be invented, will use the technology. Version 4.0 added a low-power mode to help converse battery life, and now with version 4.1, they’re tackling radio interference, connection robustness, and data transfer rates.
Apple, unlike the handful of companies that produce Android smartphones that are actually worth buying, releases new a new smartphone just once every 12 months or so. Contrast that with someone like Samsung, who announces a new Galaxy every three weeks. This is important from a sales perspective, because when those new iPhones land, sales spike. According to data collected by Kantar Worldpanel during the 12 weeks ending on Halloween, this spike was more pronounced this year.
NetAirus Technologies is a company owned by 70 year old Richard L. Ditzik, an electrical engineer who patented the idea of a handheld device that can connect to the internet, make phone calls, and be used as a personal digital assistant. In other words, he patented the smartphone. Ditzik has been in court with Apple over this patent for quite a few number of years, but now, according to Bloomberg, the case is over, and Apple has won.
China Mobile scores 130 MHz of 4G LTE spectrum, makes December 18th iPhone 5s/5c launch seem that much more certain
China’s Radio Regulation Bureau, the people who dole out spectrum to the country’s operators, has recently announced that China Mobile will get 130 MHz of spectrum, whereas China Telecom and China Unicom will both get 40 MHz. During China Mobile’s Global Partners Conference, which kicks off on December 17th, it’s said that the world’s largest operator will finally announce that they’re going to start selling the iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c.
When it was discovered that America’s government has been spying on Germany for the past decade, people rightly freaked out and got upset. This isn’t a political website, so we’re not going to argue about what’s right or wrong, but we will say this: German politicians now want to make sure their communications are safe. That means getting everyone in power to use an encrypted phone. That also means iPhones are now banned since they don’t support the encryption software that’s Germany’s intelligence agency has developed.
A man in Beijing named Ma recently had quite a scare in his home. An iPhone 3GS, which he purchased in 2009, spontaneously exploded while resting on his bedside table. According to him, he’s also an iPhone 4 owner, but recently took his old iPhone 3GS from out of a drawer because he wanted to use it for a second phone line. He charged the phone, as one would normally do, and BOOM, it just melted.
Of the many new features in iOS 7, one of the most hyped has been support for game controllers. Yesterday, we shared a review of the first of such controllers to hit the market, the Moga Ace Power. According to TouchArcade, the $100 price tag is far too high, the build quality wasn’t up to snuff, and sadly, not a lot of games take advantage of the controller.
When it comes to mobile gaming, nothing beats iOS. Not even the dedicated systems from Nintendo and Sony offer the wide assortment of games found in Apple’s App Store. There’s just one problem, however, and it’s input. Touch screens are great for lots of things, even gaming, but sometimes you just need an analog stick and a few buttons to get the most out of a title. Luckily, with the release of iOS 7, Apple added support for game controllers. The first product to take advantage of these new APIs is now available.