Check out all the news from Berlin at our IFA 2015 hub!
Check out all the news from Berlin at our IFA 2015 hub!
Runtastic may have started as a training log app, but it soon progressed to putting its badge on running watches and accessories. The Orbit was possibly the company's most confident step into the world of wearables, and today it's making another with the "proper watch" Moment activity tracker. The Moment logs all the basics you'd expect from a fitness tracker: steps, distance, time active, calories burned and sleep patterns, along with a dial on the watch face showing progress towards your goal. Like Withings' Activité and Pop devices, the Moment's analog styling extends to running on a regular watch battery, so it won't need daily/weekly charging. This means no annoying ports, too, which helps keep things nice and sealed -- waterproof to 300 feet by Runtastic's reckoning.
Two different groups of MIT researchers found a way to print out objects with glass instead of plastic and to make a printer spew out 10 different materials at once earlier this year. This particular team along with researchers from the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya in Israel, however, have chosen to focus on creating a system that makes it possible for even novices to customize the objects they want to print. Designers typically have to adjust a CAD file to tweak the object's looks by typing in numerical values, and then wait for minutes to hours for a simulation software to make sure the final product is viable. The system this group developed dramatically speeds up the process.
While you've been busy scarfing down fried calamari rings, scientists at the University of Pennsylvania have been doing something else with squid. Namely? Studying the cephalopod's ring teeth for a way to create a material that heals when water's present, much in the way that those tentacle-bound choppers...
To say that Intel has been dragging out the launch of its Skylake-based processors would be an understatement when it didn't even reveal full details after it started shipping the first CPUs. Most of that secrecy is coming to an end today, however, as the semiconductor giant is officially launching...
Parrot's high-tech headphone series just got another notable upgrade. The Zik 3 brings the same noise cancellation and touch panel controls of the last model, but adds wireless charging to the already-wireless headphones. There's also a completely different look, that Parrot's calling "a touch of couture" (the company is French so we're giving them a pass), which includes four options in croc texture, "overstitch" detailed cans in black and ivory, and a black leather grain option. The redesigned cans are more slender than the Zik 2, and while there's even more tech inside the sequel, the Zik 3s weigh exactly the same.
Nextbit wanted to celebrate the launch of its debut smartphone today at a party in San Francisco, but it turned out to be a celebration of success as well. In just under 12 hours, the startup reached its $500,000 Kickstarter goal to fund the Robin, an Android phone that isn't only "cloud first," but also surprisingly design forward as well. We had a chance to get an early look at what the final product might actually look like (though bear in mind these are all still prototypes) and asked Scott Croyle, Nextbit's Chief Product and Design Officer -- who's also a former design lead for HTC -- a few questions about the phone as well.
LG is launching a phone called the V10 with a small auxiliary "ticker" display above the main screen, according to Evan Blass (@evleaks) and photos from Chinese regulator Tenaa. That might sound bizarre, but it was actually used before on Samsung's Continuum, a 2010 Galaxy S Verizon variant. Still, it's a unusual idea for a modern phone that otherwise looks rather decent. According to Blass, it'll have a 5.7-inch 2,560 x 1,440 screen, Snapdragon 808 CPU, 3GB memory, 16-megapixel rear/5-megapixel front cameras, expandable memory and a back fingerprint scanner.
Even if you spent $399 on the ultra-crazy edition of Borderlands: The Handsome Collection there was a pretty gaping hole in it. No, I'm not talking about what that purchase did to your bank account, I mean the anthology's distinct lack of the series' first game. Well, for Xbox One owners that's changing because the Vault Hunters' first trip to Pandora was recently added to the list of Xbox 360 games playable on Microsoft's newest console -- something that was teased back at E3 this year. Folks in the Dashboard Preview Program can start playing right now, of course, but everyone else who got stuck on Dr. Ned's zombie island (Microsoft says all save files, add-on content and achievements will transfer over) have to wait until the feature launches to the public this November. You still had a few lunar side-quests left to finish for Handsome Jack in the meantime anyhow, right?
WhatsApp has grown tremendously from the time Facebook acquired it in 2014 for $19 billion. The messaging app's founder, Jan Koum, has just announced on Facebook that the service has reached 900 million monthly active users (MAU). That means it has gained 100 million new ones in less than five months since Koum celebrated reaching 800 million subscribers in April. That number isn't too far off from its parent company's either, which announced 1.49 billion MAUs as of June this year. In comparison, Facebook's own Messenger app reached 700 million MAUs in June, mostly due to its split from the social network's main application. Considering the app has been installed at least a billion times on Android, the new user count isn't that surprising. We just hope its continued success doesn't lead to even more divorces in Italy.
Google's health conditions feature is about making it easier to find information about an illness. So, when there's a local outbreak, or you get early symptoms, you can be better prepared. Mountain View has doubled the number of diseases in its database, bringing the number up to over 900 -- including neglected tropical diseases and infections that typically affect people in developing nations. If you do a query for any of those illnesses on either mobile or desktop, you'll see a quick results panel, which contains info on its symptoms, treatments and prevalence.
A big part of what's won Chrome a lot of converts is how much faster it is over the competition. That speed comes at a price, though: The web browser is notoriously a resource hog (especially if you have a dozen or so tabs open at once) and it dramatically cuts into battery life. As Google tells it, the latest version of the browser will help absolve those sins a bit. New tweaks include restoring only the most frequently used tabs should it detect that your machine is precariously low on resources, and a way of detecting when a page isn't busy with something else and using the free processor cycles to clean up idle memory.
By the looks of things, Google's self-driving cars have been learning a lot in Austin, Texas. In its first report since it began testing autonomous vehicles in the city, the company details the challenges its cars have had to face while driving on its roads. For instance, they've been spotting and avoiding a lot of deer, some of which might have ended up as road kill if they happened to come across ordinary vehicles instead. The system also had to learn to identify new infrastructure, such as horizontal traffic signals. Google has learned, however, that one of the major problems it has to tackle is pedestrians stepping off the curb onto the road while hidden by other vehicles.
iPhone and iPads owners looking for a browser alternative are one step closer to seeing Mozilla's option on their devices, but right now a "preview" of the app is only available in New Zealand. In a blog post it says this limitation is so it can gather feedback before taking it to a few more countries ahead of any public launch. Assuming you are a Kiwi, you can try out its Intelligent Search with suggested results across certain sites, and sync your info from the desktop with a Firefox account. Everyone else is invited to sign up for a notification of when the app will arrive in their country.
Over the last few years, we've learned that US law enforcement agencies not only regularly use "Stingray" devices to locate suspects by their cellphones, but go to great lengths to hide this activity. After extensive reporting on the subject, the Department of Justice has established an "Enhanced Policy for Cell-Site Simulators" (PDF) detailing when they can be used by federal agencies, and how. A big part of that is the requirement that agents obtain a warrant first, except in certain cases that can include ongoing hacking attempts and people in danger of death or bodily harm. Also, they can't be used to collect communications like emails or texts at all.
IFA started with a bang as Sony whipped out the Xperia Z5 Premium, a smartphone that comes with the "world's first" 5.5-inch 4K display. That was swiftly followed by the launch of Huawei's Mate S, a phone that's designed to kill the iPhone 6 Plus by basically copying its every design feature. Then there was ASUS' new gaming laptop that's so powerful it needs its own water pump to keep it cool. We took some time to bring you the most exciting announcements from the show floor, so don't hesitate before hitting that play button.
Check out all the news from Berlin at our IFA 2015 hub!
Back to school. Those three words can strike fear in even the hardiest of kids. We're celebrating the beginning of the semester a little differently, because, well, that's what we do on Playdate. Rather than spend the afternoon quoting Billy Madison, we're going to be playing through No PIneapple Left Behind, a game that skewers the politics of the American education system. And who better to talk about it than Seth Alter, the former teacher who developed the game? No one, that's who. So join us here at 6 pm ET / 3 pm PT as Sean Buckley and myself walk through these pineapple-filled halls for two hours on Twitch. You can tune in here on this post, Twitch.tv/joystiq or even the Engadget Gaming homepage. And no, there's no need to bring an apple for us -- just being a good sport in chat is reward enough.
Crown-of-thorns starfish (COTS) are voracious coral consumers with a propensity for population explosions, which makes them very real threats to the world's coral reefs. And while they're typically held in check by fish higher in the food chain, overly aggressive human fishing has decimated these predator species. That's why a team from the Queensland University of Technology in Australia has spent the past decade developing a fully autonomous COTS-hunting robotic submarine to help bring these populations back into balance.
Almost a year ago, Apple put a Retina display inside its 27-inch desktop. A report from 9to5Mac says we could see a high-res panel on the smaller 21.5-inch model soon as well. The word comes from Mark Gurman, who has a solid track record for news like this, of the new iMac initially tipped by clues inside the upcoming OS X El Capitan. Despite the larger all-in-one getting a 5K Retina panel last fall, the report claims that the 21.5-inch version will come equipped with a 4K display and resolution of 4,096 x 2,304 (up from the current 1,920 x 1,080). While Apple has an iPhone-focused event scheduled for next week, Gurman says the new iMac won't be announced until next month. If you're not too thrilled about paying a premium for a higher-resolution display, chances are the current model will remain available. Even after the 27-inch Retina model arrived, the 1440p option stuck around.
Samsung is making a habit of teasing its next announcement at the end of launch events. After today's Gear S2 official reveal, the company teased a new tablet: the Galaxy View. Of course, details are quite scarce right now, but we do know that the slate sports a Surface-esque kickstand that's either built-in or added by a case. The device maker only offered the hints of "think bigger" and "a new dimension of entertainment" alongside the promise that we'll get more info next month. And when those specs emerge, you can bet we'll bring you the latest.
Check out all the news from Berlin at our IFA 2015 hub.
Google and its mapping service Waze are being dragged to court over allegations that Waze stole data from a rival's map database. The lawsuit filed in San Francisco federal court on Tuesday by PhantomAlert alleges that the navigation app used proprietary data from PhantomAlert without permission. Both apps share road, red light and traffic information. According to PhantomAlert CEO Joseph Seyoum he noticed that Waze was using the same fictitious location information in its app that his company had used to test PhantomAlert. The only way Waze would have that fake location data is if it was using information from Seyoum's company.