Android, Chrome head Pichai reveals SDK for wearable device plans
Google will be helping developers create software for wearable devices, by releasing a software development kit specifically for the gadgets, the head of Android and Chrome has revealed to an audience in Austin, Texas. Sundar Pichai advised during a SXSW interview that the company would provide an Android-based SDK for wearables within the next two weeks, as well as discussing in-car technology, the Chromecast, and other topics.
Health tracker manufacturer reportedly bought by Intel
Intel has picked up health tracker producer Basis Science, beating off competition from Apple and Google, according to a report. The acquisition, yet to be confirmed by either company, is said by multiple sources to be worth $100 million or $150 million, and extends Intel's wearables portfolio from the SD card-sized Edison computer and the combined headset and smartphone combination known as Jarvis.
Sony enters fitness tracker market with discrete wearable device
Sony initially unveiled its SmartBand wearable tracker at CES in January as the company's first foray into the fitness tracker market. Consisting of a rubberized band and a central and small Core sensor acting as the brain of the device, the tracker in theory performs all of the usual tracking functions of a fitness band, as well as handling other aspects of the wearer's life, such as music, when used with the accompanying Lifelog app. Electronista spent time at Sony's Mobile World Congress booth to try out the SmartBand.
Fitness tracker combines wrist-worn device with Bluetooth earpiece
Huawei has entered the wearable devices market with an accessory that provides users more options beyond just fitness tracking. The TalkBand B1 is a wearable fitness tracker that incorporates a detachable Bluetooth earpiece as part of the design, allowing the wearer to make and receive phone calls when not monitoring fitness. Electronista took a closer look at the device at the company's Mobile World Congress display.
Huawei announces TalkBand B1, unlikely to be released in US
Huawei has announced its upcoming wearable tech device, the TalkBand B1. Described as both a fitness band and Bluetooth headset combined, the band has a removable earpiece that accepts calls, and when used in the band tracks physical activities including sleep. Its 90mAh battery can last up to six days powering the flexible OLED display. The TalkBand B1 is not anticipating release in the US, though will be available in Chinese markets next month, and Japan, the Middle East, Russia and Western Europe in the second quarter of 2014.
Battery, display issues hampering HTC smart watch development
HTC is still planning to compete with Samsung and others in the smart watch market, by shipping a wearable device later this year, the company chairwoman has revealed in an interview. Work on a smart watch has been stalled by battery issues and other problems, according to Cher Wang, though the company hoping to launch some form of wearable item sometime before the holiday shopping season.
Comes on heels of Apple hiring spree for medical, wearable experts
Following the news that Apple had hired Michael O'Reilly, a former chief medical officer at a pulse oximeter company to an undisclosed job position last summer -- and has been steadily poaching or hiring other medical and wearable device experts -- federal meeting logs show that an FDA commissioner met with Apple executives and others in December to discuss mobile medical apps. The meeting's contents were not divulged.
Fitness features paired with notifications
As expected, many CES exhibitors chose to focus on wearable technology this year. Razer was among the companies attempting to make a foray into the growing market, introducing the Nabu wristband that provides smartphone notifications and fitness features. We met with one of the product engineers this week to try on a prototype and see how it compares to Nike's FuelBand and more complex devices such as the Galaxy Gear.
Core sensor to track movement, social activities
After releasing its own SmartWatch, Sony has decided to move into the wearable tracker market. The SmartWear initiative will be made up of a range of devices for tracking a variety of items, with the diminutive Core acting as the central point for all collection activity, as well as a more conventional SmartBand fitness tracker housing to hold the sensor itself.
Galaxy Band, other wearable be in the offing
Samsung may be preparing to reveal yet another wearable computing device in the near future, as Samsung UK hinted this week that such a device was in the offing. A post on the Samsung UK Twitter feed teased the unveiling of a new Samsung device, and the presence of the Galaxy Gear smartwatch in that post has observers speculating that Samsung's next big unveil may be another entry in its nascent line of wearable tech. Some speculate that Samsung could show off a new wrist-mounted device as soon as next week's Consumer Electronics Show.
Dell exploring possible smart watch, wearable devices
Dell may be looking towards moving into wearable computing, as the company continues to struggle against receding computer shipment figures. Global vice president of personal computing Sam Burd said that the PC producer is "exploring areas in that space," which could see Dell go against other major manufacturers in an emerging product market.
Wearable computer records 720p video, runs Android 4.0
Vuzix has revealed its upcoming wearable computer. Competing with the similar-in-appearance Project Glass from Google, the Smart Glasses M100 seems to offer most of the usability of a smartphone in a wearable format. Connectable to an Android or iOS smartphone over BlueTooth and Wi-Fi, the M100 allows wearers to take calls, read text messages and e-mail, along with other standard tasks.
Wearable tech suitable for engineers, uses hands-free gestures
Motorola Solutions has revealed its new headset-based mobile computer. Appearing at first glance to be a version of Google's Project Glass for engineers, the HC1 Headset Computer uses voice recognition, head gestures and video streaming to navigate applications, and allows the wearer to see various schematics and documents relevant to the task at hand.
GoPro unveils the Hero3, a tiny, 4K-capable sports camera
GoPro has taken the wraps of its Wi-Fi-enabled Hero3sports camera. As the promotional video embedded highlights, depending on model, the new wearable device supports video resolutions up to 4K, or 4 times the resolution of 1080p. The Hero3 is also 30 percent smaller and 25 percent lighter than the model it replaces.
Autographer puts a new spin on the wearable camera concept
OMG Life has unveiled a new twist on the concept of a wearable camera. The Autographer aims to automatically capture photos from varying angles and at different rates triggered either by movement, but is also manually adjustable based on user settings. The makers claim that the series of photos that the camera can produce over the course of a day will offer a distinct and unique perspective on wearer’s activities.
Display detachable for other eyewear
Vuzix has announced that its Tac-Eye LT, a rugged monocular display mounted on Oakley's SI Ballistic M-Frame 2.0 protective glasses, is now available for customers in Europe. The system integrates a small AMOLED display with 852x600 resolution, enabling users to view content from a wearable computer or other video sources.
Wearable's AirStash uses wireless, microSD
Wearable on Monday teased a rare new storage add-on for the iPhone and iPod touch. The AirStash behaves much like a USB flash drive with a removable SD card for its storage but has a wireless connection that lets it share its data with one of Apple's devices, even when not plugged into a computer. The approach is pitched as a way of storing documents and especially media away from the limited storage of the iPhone or iPod itself without losing access.