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Right on schedule — just a couple of days after the release of Google Fit, in fact — Microsoft has unveiled its first modern attempt at a wearable computer: the Microsoft Band, a fitness tracker with a small screen and some smartwatch-like properties. To get the most out of the Band, you’ll also need Microsoft Health, a quantified self/mobile health app that produces pretty graphs and tracks your various fitness-related activities (or lack thereof). Microsoft Band is available to buy today (in the US) for $200, and the Health app is available for iOS, Android, and Windows Phone.
First, let’s talk about the Microsoft Band. Yes, it has an awful name — but I guess the only other option was the Windows Band or Surface Band, both of which are pretty bad, too. The Band is pretty much your standard fitness tracker, but with a rather large selection of sensors, including GPS, heart rate, and even UV, so that you know when to reapply the sunscreen lotion. There’s also a 1.4-inch touchscreen display (33mm by 11mm) with a fairly high resolution of 320×106. The whole thing, including 24-hour heart rate monitoring, will apparently have a battery life of 48 hours.
Wearable Technologies Forum Goes Global in 2014, with Conferences in New York City, San Francisco, London, Seoul and Munich
An impressive lineup of experts ready themselves to engage with hundreds of business and technology enthusiasts at Golden Networking‘s Wearable Computing Conference 2014 (http://www.wearable-computing-conference.com), “How Wearable Technologies are Revolutionizing Mobile Wireless Internet, Healthcare and Fashion”, forums to be held throughout 2014 in New York City (January 30), San Francisco (March 18), London (May 29), Seoul (September 25) and Munich (November 20).
The future is here, with the production of a new generation of technologies such as Google Glass, Apple “iWatch” and Samsung Galaxy Gear, among others, that will allow users to interact with computing devices that are worn by the bearer under, with or on top of clothing. The introduction of smart watches and glasses bring upon economic, social and personal effects that will revolutionize the human experience.
The use of technology has greatly expanded out of the workplace into users’ daily lives. Now the integration of human experience and wearable computing will allow users to enhance each experience. This new wave of technologies will ignite an explosion of innovation which will be the key to advancement for mankind.
Now we are at an inflexion point in the advancement of the adoption of wearable computing. To expand the market for wearable technologies, it is necessary for developers and manufacturers to lead the world to show how the usage of these technologies can revolutionize every aspect of the human experience.
Golden Networking‘s Wearable Computing Conference 2014, “How Wearable Technologies are Revolutionizing Mobile Wireless Internet, Healthcare and Fashion,” will examine wearable technologies’ functions, application, the competition and possibilities for economic and personal growth.
Wearable Computing Conference 2014 is produced by Golden Networking (http://www.goldennetworking.net), the premier networking community for business and technology executives, entrepreneurs and investors.Panelists, speakers and sponsors are invited to contact Golden Networking by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Smart watches are already here, but until now smart watch shipments have been negligible. Smartwatches could be the next big thing in mobile technology. Dozens of companies are gambling on this being the case, but it seems as they will only ever have limited appeal thanks to their superfluous nature.
The tiny screens are considered as a problematic for fat-fingered folks. However, thanks to researchers at the University of California, good news appears to be on the way. Scientists from the University of California at Berkeley and Davis are making a tiny chip that can detect gestures in three dimensions.
The little chip enables the use of ultrasound waves and, because of that, it is called Chirp.
Made by Chirp Microsystems, the system is able to make non-contact gesture control in the same familiar way to interact with mobile devices, as well as control via the touch screen. Its main element is a small electronic chip, equipped with a sound locator–an array of ultrasonic transducers tiny acoustic resonators that generates ultrasonic waves reflected from the user’s hands or objects. Depending on how those waves bounce off nearby objects and reflected, gestures are then captured and analyzed.
Joining Samsung and Apple, Google Nears Android Smartwatch Launch as Company in Talks With Asian Suppliers for Mass Production
Google‘s smartwatch is in late-stage development and the company is in talks with Asian suppliers to begin mass production of the device, people familiar with the matter revealed to The Wall Street Journal’s Eva Dou and Lorraine Luk.
The new device, which will run on Android, will be integrated with Google Now, the company’s intelligent personal assistant that can answer questions, make recommendations and predict what information users need based on what they are doing, a person familiar with the situation said. Google has also been working to reduce power consumption on the smartwatch so it won’t require frequent battery charges, the person said.
The smartwatch will be able to communicate with other devices such as a smartphone, and draw information such as travel schedules from a user’s email through Google Now, the person said. The device could be ready for mass production within months.
No big surprises from Apple. No iWatch. No competition for Samsung Galaxy Gear or other Smart Watches
CNN’s Heather Kelly and Doug Gross report Apple’s iPad becoming thinner, lighter, faster. That’s what Apple promises in its newest iPad, which also has a new name: the iPad Air. Yet, no iWatch and therefore, no competition yet from the Cupertino firm for Samsung Galaxy Gear or other Smart Watches.
The company rolled out the fifth generation of its market-leading tablet. Among its new features, the iPad will weigh 1 pound, down from 1.4 pounds. It’s 20% thinner and 28% lighter than the current fourth-generation iPad.
The iPad Air will have the same 9.7-inch screen as previous iPads and pack the same A7 processing chip that’s in the iPhone 5S. That will make it 72 times faster than the original iPad, according to Apple Senior Vice President Phil Schiller.
The iPad Air will go on sale November 1. Prices will start at $499 for a 16GB Wi-Fi-only model and go up to $629 for a 16GB with 4G LTE connectivity.
Dara Kerr states that it doesn’t look like Apple will be cooking up its own rendition of Google Glass, but some other sort of wearable technology could be brewing.
During an interview at the D11 conference on Tuesday, Apple CEO Tim Cook said that he thinks wearable computing is “profoundly interesting.” While he noted that glasses seem to be “risky,” the idea of wearing something on the wrist is “natural.”
However, he said, “you have to convince people it’s so incredible you want to wear it.” Cook pointed out that most young people don’t wear watches, so it would be the company’s job to make them appealing.