Posts Tagged ‘bluetooth’

So, yesterday we showed you the wonders of Piena, which promises to solve an issue that every parent has to endure, simplifying the sterilisation process for us all.

Call us the Mary Poppins of the Tech world, as we have something else for you on the horizon which we think again parents will love and in the end need!

One of the biggest fears in life is losing a child, which is so easy in modern day malls and super markets, but the guys over at BeLuvv think they have solved the problem. The idea was born after the founder himself lost his child in a supermarket and had to come up with an idea to keep track of him in today’s modern connected world.

Guardian, a small device which can be clipped to your child’s clothing or put into a watch type strap is used to communicate with your smartphone to keep track of your child’s whereabouts. When your child is in Bluetooth range, Guardian keeps track of them and notifies you if he or she approaches the tracking boundary which can be amended by the parent at any time from the app.

The device comes with an app to help you track your child in real time and it also creates a network of parents that grows stronger as more people join the system. Since every copy of the Guardian app can connect to central servers, when the child leaves the phone’s range, the cloud-based system can trigger an emergency network search, and you’ll get an alert with your child’s location if he or she is close to another person with the Guardian app.

Of course, this has to see a massive take up for it to become viable on a local level for the network search features, but as an out-of-range assistant will work extremely well. I cannot see any parent saying no to this, the wearable device can easily be worn by a child and at a pre-order price of $24.95 you cannot afford to not take a look.

320pd_2 320pd_4 app_02

 

One of the most asked questions aimed at TheTechSpy is “What wireless speaker should I get for my phone?”. It’s a good question, of which has many answers, as over the last few years some interesting products have been released at various price points.

Of course, we have the likes of B&W, Denon and Bose up at the higher end producing some very tasty devices, but you pay for that class which some people just do not want to stretch to. To a certain extent we agree, as this is a product that is meant to be thrown in your case or bag, pulled out at impromptu situations with friends to enjoy music together and not always just to look stylish and pristine on your side table.

Last week we came across Blazar made by Beacon Audio, a cool little company that created a wireless speaker last year and like all good companies has improved on its design and taken it a step further. This device offers the best of both worlds….it looks cool in the house but is begging to be taking out and used on your travels.

This clever little speaker connects to any device with Bluetooth and can even pair the Bluetooth via NFC for those lucky enough to have it. It comes with a rechargeable battery which lasts up to 12 hrs and can even handle phone calls when you are listening to music with its in-built microphone.

Constructed of a single piece of aluminium, this speaker will not look out-of-place with most current setups. The speaker (if the $200k stretch goal is reached) will come with a beautiful leather carrying case to protect it which I don’t think any other manufacturer offers.

The guys have worked with some artists to bring you different versions of the unit with a little of that artist’s character, which give this an edge over most other speakers I have seen. Whether you use this to listen to music on the go, or watch a film on your tablet, the construction and design places it at the top end, but with a fairly mid range price of $124 (and $17 shipping internationally) for the silver version on Kickstarter.

We will see you on the pledge board! ūüėČ

Blazer

Blazer little jacket

 

 

The Smart Home….a dream of most Techies out there, but reserved for those with deep pockets.

Thankfully things are about to change. The technological revolution is paving the way for cheaper tech and more advanced protocols which are allowing us all to take advantage of this future. The general public is learning to code and more manufacturers are open sourcing devices to push for even more possibilities.

It won’t be long til your home will think intelligently, knowing things like when you are in, how you like your temperature and to turn off any unused devices when you are not around. Over the last few months we have seen some very exciting devices arrive on the scene like, Smartthings, Nest and Ube who are being funded through crowd sourcing routes and have picked up a great following.

One of the new kids on the block is Goji, the smart door lock which fits over your existing lock, allowing you to fit it to pretty much any door lock out there. If you are unsure if it will fit on your door, the company are happy to have a look at a photo of your lock to confirm.

The sleek futuristic looking disc surrounded in brushed metal has a blue-text LED display that will show the status of the lock and welcomes users in by name.

The lock has a built-in camera that takes a quick photo of any users and sends this to your photo to alert you when people are home. One of the most interesting features is the ability to be able to send someone else an electronic key to gain access to your house, allowing family in before you get home if you are running late. Imagine the possibilities of letting the cleaner in, or even guests to your rental property when you are not present.

The big worry for us is the security side and of course if this goes wrong and you are left stranded outside your own house. Well, Goji will supply electronic fobs and the a good old-fashioned key for when the worst happens, but the lock is programmed to message you when the unit is running out of battery prompting you to change it.

If you lose your phone, you can easily call the support line 24/7 to retract access from that user to ensure that the system is not abused.

The Goji Smart Lock will allow you to lock your house from anywhere in the world and knows if you are inside your house or if you are coming from the street. If you are coming from the street, Goji will open the door automatically, and if you are inside of your house, Goji will not unlock your door as you approach it before you know who is at the other side.

This is a welcome accessory to the smart home set up and will solve a lot of issues as we have all suffered from being locked out or losing our keys. If you wish to purchase one at the reduced price through Indiegogo you have a couple of days left to buy them at $235 here.

Goji

It seems like not a day passes where another Apple compatible product is released, as companies scramble to profit from the design savvy consumer Apple  produces for.

Logitech are pretty much ahead in this arena, but I have to admit they are on fire at the moment with some of the products they are releasing and seem to have their finger on the pulse.

Bring on the Logitech Z600. The sleek, Apple-esque, wireless stereo speakers for your desktop. These cool units house three drivers each and can hook up to smartphones, tablets or laptops over a Bluetooth connection. Logitech have kindly included a Bluetooth dongle for those who do not have this built-in to the electronic device they are using.

The speakers allow for 3 simultaneous connections to your devices and can easily switch between them when the command is sent. Volume is controlled via the right speaker with a touch panel at the top which allows you to glide your finger iPod style and a 3.5mm jack is housed at the rear for those devices without the ability to connect wirelessly. Along the back of the right speaker, you can also find the power and pairing button which are hidden nicely.

These speakers will not look out-of-place and are at the right size to sit on your desktop and look pretty cool. You may want to think of these as a cheap alternative to a multiroom system as they are cheap enough to buy and place in every room and then just stream music from your smart phone and confidently fill most rooms with good sound.

Released in August with a RRP of £129.99 in the UK.

Z600

 

Airbus, not content with spending all their time on fixing A380 issues has come up with a superb idea….Smart Luggage!

Now, like me you are probably thinking….WTF!? But I am sure the majority of people reading these blogs (Hello to both of you) have been in the situation where you are waiting for your luggage at the airport, watching the conveyor belt go round and round as more people leave happily with their cases…your heart begins to sink, your smile drains from your face….”Why does this always happen to me” we all mutter to ourselves, well this all could be a thing of the past.

According to the Australian Business Traveler, Airbus have released a prototype of its iPhone enabled smart luggage. The prototype, called Bag2Go uses a GPS tracker, RFID chip and a 2G connection to record where the bag is in the world with a “Find my bag” app. The case would work with an iPhone app which records the data and will show you where the case currently is, also apparently alerting the owner when it has been opened.

The RFID chip will be utilised so that the bag can be tracked by the airport itself, matching the flyer and the case on their journeys. The airline has teamed up with T-Mobile and Rimowa to develop this project, but doesn’t intend to sell the bags, but is releasing the license for others to buy it or rent out the service.

Airbus are looking for this to be involved in a “rent a bag” scheme where the case is delivered to your door, you fill it, they scan it and take it away and it arrives ready for you at your destination, giving you hassle-free traveling.

TheTechSpy gives a big thumbs up to the integrated scales in the handle which wirelessly links to the iPhone to simply weigh the case without the need for a separate accessory. We would have loved to have seen Bluetooth involved in conjunction with the iPhone to display a notification when your case has strayed from your side for extra security, but maybe we will leave this for version 2.0.

Let’s just hope the case doesn’t have battery issues like its Boeing competitor.

Bag2Go

 

 

 

 

UK radio specialist Pure have today unveiled its latest model, the Evoke F4 internet radio.

While its exterior looks like a retro radio, its interior has nothing retro about it. This cheeky little box offers radio via WiFi from DAB, internet and normal FM sources and can also be used along side Pure’s very own Jongo system.It also includes Bluetooth and a “Tag” button which can automatically pull up track information on a song playing on the radio.

Pure are really considering those trying to build a multi-room system by allowing you to construct the system slowly without the need of buying a costly whole system package. This unit will work as a standalone digital radio or as part of the Jongo set up which includes speakers like its Sonos competition.

The Evoke F4 is constructed with a real wood case and has an OLED screen to show all station information and weighs in just under 1.5kg giving it a nice retro well made feel.

The F4 allows you to record internet and DAB radio direct to a USB flash drive to listen to later and of course gives you access to all on-demand podcasts and programs.

The Pure Evoke F4 has one 7W 3.5″ speaker and has an optional battery pack that will keep you going for a continuous¬† 12 hours wireless use. The F4 goes on sale today for ¬£179.99 with optional Pure music subscriptions starting at ¬£4.99 a month.

Pure-Evoke-F4

 

 

 

 

Agent

 

Well, just when we thought that the likes of Pebble were taking over the world of smart watches and all we had to look forward to were the super powers of Google and Apple stamping out the competition, there’s a new kid in town.

Agent, a Kickstarter collaboration from Secret Labs & House of Horology is a real smart watch which I think has hit the nail on the head in terms of design. Let’s leave the techie stuff for now, this watch will not look out of place in the gym, out at the shops or even at the office, which is rare in a smartwatch like this. The solid, almost industrial design looks superb and so different to anything we have seen so far.

Now, the stuff you have been waiting for, what’s inside the dinky little case….Firstly, let’s talk about the dual processor. This is one of the first times this has been used, one processor looking after the bulk of power hungry apps ( ARM Cortex M4) and the other, a smaller chip which takes care of business in sleep mode, making sure power consumption is kept to a real minimum (11% of last years processor consumption).

Inside, the watch also houses a bluetooth chip which like all other smart watches connects to your phone to pull data or even control it. It will work with iPhone 4S and higher, Android 2.3+ and Windows Phone 8, so most of us will not have issues with compatibility. One of my favourite things about these smart watches is notifications in the form of vibration. Imagine sitting in a meeting and your phone is ringing, a quick glance of your watch face tells you whether it is important or not, enabling you to divert the call or get up and take it.

The watch is water resistant and most importantly has a rechargeable battery with a 7 day life span (with Bluetooth on)which is wirelessly charged via the Qi pad supplied. Interestingly if you have a Qi pad by other manufacturers this will still charge. The watch also includes an accelerometer for use with step counting and anything else developers wish to do with it and 2 light sensors to control the brightness of the anti glare screen.

To sum up, this watch isn’t a million miles away from the devices out there, but where we do see a massive difference is in the design, and this is where you can see the impact of getting an outside designer (House of Horology) who have given a different aspect on creating a smart watch.

For the first time, here is a watch that I would consider leaving my designer watch at home. Order yours now for $199 with $15 delivery to the UK with an expected delivery in Jan 2014.