Smartwatch Competition on the Rise

0
Image: smartwatchnews.org

Image: smartwatchnews.org

Smartphones, tablets, notebooks… they’ve all been on the list of “must-have” devices for some time. Now we can add one more to the list, Smartwatches.

It really hasn’t been all that long since Pebble became the most successful Kickstarter campaign, launching its innovative, wearable technology. The days of Pebble as the lone Smartwatch supplier, however, are long gone, and tech companies are releasing watch after watch. As we mentioned a few blogs back, it’s high time Apple stepped into the arena before its too late, as competition is heating up quickly! Let’s take a look at just a few of the watches that have recently hit the market, and that are shaping up to be Apple’s biggest competition in the upcoming years.

Moto 360

Motorola looks to have really outdone themselves with the upcoming Moto 360. One advantage it has over other Smartwatches… it doesn’t look like one. This

Image: mashable.com

Image: mashable.com

Smartwatch, expected to be officially unveiled in early September, features a round-face design, much sleeker and sophisticated than most on the market. Here are a few of the specs you can expect with this one:

  • Water resistant up to 3 feet
  • 1.5″ Color, LED display/ Touchscreen
  • Right or left hand friendly
  • Voice Activation
  • Compatible exclusively with Android devices

Anticipated Price Tag: $250

 

LG G

LG G with Brushed Gold Slickwraps

LG G with Brushed Gold Slickwraps

The LG G is a fairly simple design, much like that of the original Pebble Watch. It has all the basic functions you’d want from a smartwatch and is compatible with Android. Not to be outdone by Motorola, however, LG has hinted at the release of a round-face watch that will better compete with the Moto 360. For now though, lets take a closer look at the current LG watch:

  • 1.6″ IPS display w/ thin black bezel
  • Removable, rubber strap
  • Compatible with Android 4.3 or higher
  • Square watch face

Price Tag: $229

 

Samsung Galaxy Gear 2

Intended by Samsung as both Galaxy compatible and a stand-alone device, the Galaxy Gear packs some pretty good specs. The advantage Samsung has over Apple

Image: technobuffalo.com

Image: technobuffalo.com

thus far is that it’s already had several generations of smartwatches, helping to tweak the device and work through any bugs that come with first-gen. technology. They also have several other options including the Gear Neo, Gear Fit and Gear Live. The disadvantage of the Samsung watches is that they’re only compatible with Samsung devices, isolating a great deal of its target audience. Let’s take a closer look at this wearable device:

  • 1.63-inch Super AMOLED® display
  • Stand-alone music player
  • Square watch face
  • 2 mega-pixel camera
  • Heart Monitor and pedometer

Price Tag: $299

 

Pebble / Pebble Steel

Pebble with Black Leather from Slickwraps

Pebble with Black Leather from Slickwraps

The Pebble was one of the very first Smartwatches to gain popularity. Receiving funding through the crowd-funding site Kickstarter, they may not be a huge company, but they do have the upper hand with a loyal following. While the original featured a fairly cheap looking exterior, the company has given the watch a bit of a sophistication upgrade with the Pebble Steel. Here’s a bit of what you can expect from the device:

  •   1.26″ e-paper display
  •   5-7 day battery life
  •   Downloadable watch faces
  •   iOS and Android compatibility
  •   Water resistant

Price Tag: $150 / $230

 

Those mentioned above are just the tip of the iceberg in this new device market, with dozens of others already available. Now the key is turning towards producing a watch that is both worth the consumers while, while also looking sophisticated and sleek. It will be exciting to see what some of the tech giants will come up with next!

Do you have a favorite Smartwatch brand? We want to know, comment below!

Information courtesy of: smallbiztrends.com, techradar.com, androidcentral.com

Be sure to subscribe to the Slickblogs RSS Feed for behind-the-scenes looks from the Slickwraps headquarters, and the latest technology and Slickwraps news!

 

Share

The Revolutionary Jibo: A Domestic Robot For The Jetsons In Us All

0
Fortunecom jibo

Image courtesy of Forbes.com

 

Domestic robots have long been illustrated by fictional movies and TV shows, filling the colorful minds of children everywhere.  The images still linger even as we raise our own children, shaping how we envision the future with family robots.  They have ranged from such famous earlier cartoon depictions as The Jetsons’ lively household robot, “Rosey”, to more contemporary versions such as I, Robot’s “Sonny”, a robot that unexpectedly develops human-like characteristics.  Despite years of imagination in the film industry, the actual development of the first domestic robots has led to far less advanced versions gracing the market currently, although by far the most anticipated of these is Jibo.

Teaser demo-videos have been released showing the endearing behaviors that have been programmed in to Jibo to make him more relatable (his creators have decided he is of the male gender).  His audio vocabulary includes a giggle, while his “eye” squints with the aforementioned laughter and his swivel allows him to bend at the “waist”, among several other displays meant to mimic human emotions. In the demonstrations, Jibo asks intelligent questions, as well as offering helpful reminders and assisting with basic task completion such as ordering dinner.

20140805003203-lean_rotation3

Image courtesy of Forbes.com

 

  • Voice-commanded facial recognition photo capture
  • Swivel motion for 360 degree views
  • Task and calendar reminders
  • Video chat capability without limitations on camera placement
  • Reading capability
  • Phone call capability
  • Socialization abilities

 

He’s a far cry from the household robots we have grown up imagining, but this new face on the technology horizon is standing out in the crowd of lesser creations. His focus on seamlessly fitting in to family-life achieves the contradictory feat of setting him apart from the rest.

Questions have risen about the usefulness of this robot, and whether or not Jibo is really doing anything that our cell phones can’t already accomplish.  One thing is certain:  the followers of this revolutionary device are convinced of its value, as evidenced by the unusually fast crowd-funding success that the company has had.  They also continue to stand strong in their declarations that Jibo will both simplify and improve the lives of those who bring him in to the family.  While that fact is still yet to be seen, we are certainly excitedly awaiting the debut of this little robot that we hope will steal our hearts!

Do you think that Jibo will be capable of improving upon the lives of the average American family?  Will he be an efficient time saving assistant, or a burden masquerading as a helpful tool?  Comment below and let us know your thoughts on this next era of technology!

 

Information courtesy of: Forbes.com and DigitalTrends.com

Be sure to subscribe to the Slickblogs RSS Feed for behind-the-scenes looks from the Slickwraps headquarters, and the latest technology and Slickwraps news!

 

Share

Wearable Technology, Jawbone, Measures Quake Effects

0
Image courtesy of: emergencymanagement.com

Image courtesy of: emergencymanagement.com

The scientist aren’t the only ones keeping track of geological events these days, new technologies are too! When the Napa earthquake hit California early Sunday morning, the Richter Scale measured the 6.0-earthquake as the strongest for the area in 25 years. But more unexpected technologies are offering an insight into the quake.

Screenshot from Jawbone Blog

Screenshot from Jawbone Blog

The Jawbone UP, a wearable health and fitness technology, gave an idea of how the tremors traveled from the epicenter by measuring the sleep pattern of those wearing the device. Jawbone posted a compilation of statistics to their blog showing the sleep pattern of users in the effected areas. Taking a look at cities within 25 miles of the epicenter, Napa, Sonoma, Vallejo, and Fairfield, 93 percent of UP users woke up at exactly the same time, around 3:20am. Traveling farther away from the epicenter in cities such as San Francisco and Oakland (25 – 50 miles), only 55 percent of users felt the effects enough to wake.

The earthquake was responsible for destroying historic building and knocking out power to more than 15,ooo residents. It also caused injuries to approximately 160 people. The Jawbone statistics show 45 percent of users who woke and stayed up the rest of the night. These users could be have been those among the injured, or those helping to clean up the rubble and damage caused by the strong quake.

While the findings from the Jawbone are anything but surprising, it is interesting to see some other ways we are able to see and measure the effects of natural disasters, and with new apps and add-ons constantly being introduced to wearable technology, it’s inevitable that these abilities will continue to grow.

The Jawbone UP

So what exactly does the Jawbone do? This wearable technology is worn to help the user keep track of the daily habits and routine, encouraging a healthier lifestyle. Sitting around too long without moving? The bracelet will vibrate telling you to get up and move around. Not reaching a healthy average of 10,000 steps a day? The bracelet is there to tell you this too! The bracelet is complete with a jack to connect to your smartphone, or the option of a USB to connect to your

Image courtesy of Jawbone.com

Image courtesy of Jawbone.com

computer. With this, the bracelet will sync and display all of your statistics for the day. While there may be plenty more options that the Jawbone can’t do just yet, take a look below to see some of the information it provides its users.

  • Measures sleep patterns (deep sleep, light sleep, awake)
  • Food and Drink Tracking
  • Activity and Step Tracking
  • Insight Engine (learns about your behaviors overtime)

The bracelet itself won’t in itself make you healthier, but the information it provides makes users aware of their activity, daily food and drink intake and sleep to help them make better decisions. This in turn leading to an overall healthier lifestyle!

Have any of you used the Jawbone, and has it helped you? Tell us your experiences in the comments below!

 

Information courtesy of: Jawbone.com/up, Jawbone.com/blog, cnet.com, techradar.com, cnn.com

Be sure to subscribe to the Slickblogs RSS Feed for behind-the-scenes looks from the Slickwraps headquarters, and the latest technology and Slickwraps news!

 

 

Share

Patent Points to Stylish, Next-Gen Google Glass

0
Image from: slashgear.com

Image from: slashgear.com

 

Image courtesy of: Google

Image courtesy of: Google

Google may be looking to combat its Google Glass aesthetics problems if newly filed patents have anything to say about it.

While Google Glass found a niche following in tech lovers, the wearable gadget hasn’t yet gained a huge backing. One problem could  be the space-age, some-what awkward look of the device. Patent images recently filed by Google show a much more natural looking pair of specs, with the screen tucked behind the frames. The display could possibly cover the entire lens.

 

The image below shows what the next-generation of Google Glass could entail.

Image from: slashgear.com

Image from: slashgear.com

While aesthetics may be one problem Google is trying to overcome, the much more natural lenses could intensify a completely different problem, a legal one. Putting aside the problem of distracted driving due to the projected screen, privacy concerns could also be an issue that crops up.

The Google Glass looks anything but natural, but recording by voice command with the device is much less conspicuous than pulling out your smartphone and recording. The idea of a some-what “hidden” camera can make people uncomfortable and often feel violated. Take that fear and stick it with a completely natural looking pair of glasses and you’re looking at a whole new level of concern.

So what do you think of the new design? Would you rock a pair if you had the chance? Let us know in the comments below!

 

Information courtesy of: slashgear.com, cnet.com, google.com/glass

Be sure to subscribe to the Slickblogs RSS Feed for behind-the-scenes looks from the Slickwraps headquarters, and the latest technology and Slickwraps news!

 

Share

Rumor Wrap-Up: What’s next from Apple?

0
iphone 6 leak

Photo Credit: PCadvisor.co.uk

It’s that time of year again, and the Apple rumor mills are at full speed. Just as expected, Apple is set to hold a media event on Sept. 9, and with very few updates to the iPhone5s and 5c last year, the tech giant is expected to unveil a completely overhauled design for the iPhone 6. We could also be looking at more than one phone unveiling. As usual, we’ll have to wait until the unveil to see exactly what Apple has in store for us, but there have been photo leaks and designs to help give an idea of what we can expect. Let’s take a look.

iPhone 6 Design Rumors:

Photo Credit: TMZ

The iPhone 6 needs to keep up with the flood of newly released, larger-screened smartphones hitting the market, so we can definitely expect to see a thinner phone and a larger screen. Some of the tech specs to expect:

  • 4.7″ – 5.5″ Sapphire Glass Display
  • Upgraded Camera
  • 7.0 mm thick
  • Possible liquid metal body
  • Wireless charging
  • Price Increase – possibly up to $900 USD

 

Besides the usual state-of-the-art udates, what’s one aspect that fans are hoping for this unveil? How about Apple finally entering the Smartwatch Market? Afterall, the recent releases from Samsung and LG aren’t compatible with the iOS software. If Apple has something up there sleeves, an iPhone 6 compatible with the rumored iWatch could be it! There are plenty of design rumors swirling about a possible iWatch, but let’s take a look at some of the most recent.

iwatch

Photo Credit: TechRadar

 

iWatch Design Rumors:

  •   – iOS 8 Compatability
  •   – Display messages, apps and Siri from phone to watch
  •   – Sapphire Glass Display (Possibly flexible)
  •   – Fitness tracking and biometric sensors

 

With all of these specs being mere rumors, we’ll have to wait until September to see what we can expect next from Cupertino!

Information courtesy of: pcadvisor.co.uk, techradar.com, theverge.com

 

Be sure to subscribe to the Slickblogs RSS Feed for behind-the-scenes looks from the Slickwraps headquarters, and the latest technology and Slickwraps news!

 

Share
Back to Top Copyright © 2012 - Slickwraps. All rights reserved.