Created with Sketch.
58 minutes | Mar 1, 2016
The Wearable Runners Really Want
The other day I talked to someone who is training for a marathon. They tried a couple wearables to help in their process but wanted something more. Both Luke and I look into the mind of a runner and hopefully help in conveying the message. Luke also got a 360 camera and was showing us what it can do for his trip to Europe. Season 3 of Wearable Today comes to an end with episode 99. Since Luke will be in Europe and I will be heading to SXSW, we will be taking a few weeks off before we jump into Season 4. Wearable Today Episode 99 Show Notes Follow us on Reddit! Everyone loves having more Pie, so why not have thirds? The Raspberry Pi 3 was announced today, and has some major upgrades. It has Bluetooth and WiFi built in, and includes an new 1.2 GHz quad-core processor integrated on to the board. The Internet of Things groups are abuzz with what this could mean for more IoT devices, and even makes a great first computer for developing countries. The new device goes on sale today for the same amazing $35 price point as the Pi 2. Google’s Project Tango is pushing the bounds of how our devices see our world, and Lenovo has finally announced the launch date of the first consumer version of the technology. According to an interview at Mobile World Congress, the first Tango-powered Lenovo phone will be launching this July, with a price point around $500. Apple has still not announced their Apple Watch sales numbers, but another research firm is taking a crack at their own estimate. IDC has put their estimates at 11.6 million, which is a little under the numbers we reported a few weeks ago by Canalys. FitBit still led the pack with 21 million devices sold, and Xiaomi comes in second with 12 million sold. As more companies get in to IoT and wearables, there’s the possibility of every manufacturer inventing their own standards, which could lead to incompatibility for customers, and prevent the widespread adoption. Some of the major sensor companies are now coming together to agree on standards that they can all follow. At the Embedded World conference this week in Germany, Advantech, ARM, Bosch, Sensirion, and Texas Instruments came together to unveil the M2.COM platform, which is all about sensors. The standards for connectors and form factors should make it easier for manufacturers to integrate with other hardware, but allow them to freedom to build whatever they can imagine. Playstation VR hasn’t gotten much attention, but apparently Sony is about to make some big announcements. They’ve invited members of the press to an event right before GDC (the Game Developers Conference). Since Sony has not backed down on their claim that the device will launch in the first half of 2016, we’re expecting that they will announce a price and launch date. One surprise to come out of Mobile World Congress was a new smartwatch from Haier. At first glace it looks like just another Android Wear device, but actually it runs a full version of Android underneath. It has a completely round 400×400 display, 8GB of storage for plenty of music, and all the requisite sensors. At only 200 Euros, it’s a very nice looking watch, and can run any app on Google Play. How well the apps work is yet to be seen, but you can read the whole article and see a video walkthrough on wareable.com. You might think that Apple Watch accessories are all about that band, ’bout that band, ’bout that band, no watch face. But you would be wrong. VGEO is manufacturing custom bezels for the Apple Watch that are meant to give it a more luxury look. The bezels snap around the watch, but don’t block any of the sensors or buttons, and are offered in Stainless Steel, Black Steel, Rose Gold, and Yellow Gold, along with various inset gems. Pricing has not been made available yet, but this could be the perfect gift for that fashionista that doesn’t feel like her watch matches the rest of her outfit. Ready to turn your board game playing into a new experience? Rick Johnson and Jeri Ellsworth demo castAR at the DICE summit in Las Vegas. It won’t be ready until 2017, but imagine watching a D&D battle unfold right in front of your eyes. CastAR is a company that raised over a million on Kickstarter, but ended up giving the money back and free headsets to all backers. The Wearable Runners Really Want Jeff’s Take Last night I sat down and talked with a friend who got a wearable because they are training for a half-marathon. In the next half hour I started to understand what they really want in a wearable. It’s the same thing we’ve talked about here. To replace the phone. Not completely, though. They want this to be something that can separate from the mobile and have some important functions. Like music. Any wearable nowadays should have some base storage on it. Doesn’t have to be big – 4 GB is more than enough to store music, contacts, and a few other things. According to a CES 2016 Runners World Article, the Fitbit Blaze is what they think runners want. Only problem is it isn’t. The biggest issue for this device is its size – too big and heavy for a runner who is pairing down as much as possible. The best watch would be one that is lightweight, stores music, allows for note-taking via voice – possibly something that can send quick texts at a coffeeshop wifi. It doesn’t have to contain LTE just yet, but wouldn’t be an issue if it did. Pairable with a Bluetooth headest, GPS tracking, and most important, the size of a wristband that can fit snug against the skin so it’s not flopping around. Of course, not forgetting the sensors needed to monitor all the vitals. Can that be accomplished in a 2016 wearable? Maybe. Then again, if it was incorporated into more than just the wrist without adding any major weight, then runners will definitely consider it. This is the same thing that they look for in a Water bottle. The camel-back is a device that sits between your shoulderblades. It holds liquid and it has a dual purpose – to help keep you cool and help hydrate you when you are on mile 7 or more. If the electronics can be distributed in a shirt or shorts to give the runners what they need, that would help emmensley. But no 5.7 inch smartphone. Luke’s Take I am not a runner. But I have run a few 5Ks, and ridden my bike to work a couple of times. So I understand some of the concerns about a fitness wearable. One guy at our office rides his bike to work almost every day. For him, that’s 35 miles or more per day. He had an iPhone, so he got an Apple Watch. He carries his phone in a pocket on the back of his riding jersey, and wears his watch. He can easily call home without getting his phone out, but he has other fitness apps that require getting the phone out anyways. He also carries his laptop and extra clothes with him on his bike, so saving the weight of a few ounces from his phone would not be a big deal for him. I do think a great offline experience is important, and Android Wear seems to be moving faster in this direction than the Apple Watch, of course it’s not well publicized by Google or the media. Android Wear introduced offline music mode over a year ago, apps have full capability to run offline, and now devices can even have 4G built in. There is one problem though. App Developers. And I say this as someone who works in app development. Until developers really start using the offline features, it won’t take off. Google can build a few apps, just like Apple does, but 3rd parties are what really drive the market. Offline run tracking with GPS, maybe a news reader, and of course hybrid fitness apps like Zombie Run would make for great offline experiences. Add a mapping solution to locate your favorite eatery, and throw in form of payment like a barcode for your Starbucks, and you have a real offline experience. Contact Wearable Today Contact Jeff - Contact Luke 608-205-4378 Twitter: @WearableToday Facebook: Facebook.com/wearabletoday Google+ : plus.google.com/+ThisWeekInGoogleGlass RSS Bandwidth by Cachefly - Get Great Deals on WearTech - Tip the Show!Thank You!
63 minutes | Feb 22, 2016
Phone Carrier’s Balls on Wearable Technology
This week we look at WearTech’s eventual move to LTE service. Will this replace your phone or other devices? We also take a quick look at the Apple/FBI iPhone issue – was the right decision made to say no? I talk about Domotz home automation and building my electronic drum kit. Luke shows off the new 3D printed items for the C3P0 build. Wearable Today Episode #98 Show Notes Check out the links on the Wearable Today subReddit LG announced several VR devices at Mobile World Congress this week. The Rolling Bot will be marketed as a cat toy, but it could almost be a tele-presence device because it has a video camera, audio for playback, and a laser in it to make your cat scramble around. They also announced a VR headset that connects to the new LG G5, that looks like a pair of steampunk glasses. And to create content for them, they showed off the LG 360 Cam. No prices for any of these devices has been announced. A couple weeks ago I riffed on one of the Original WearTech companies in View-Master. They must’ve heard the riff because Mattel has debuted the Augmented Reality headset that turns the discs into a 3D show. View Master Viewer DLX is launching in Fall for $30. Make sure your phone fits first. HTC has finally announced it’s initial pricing for the Vive, the VR headset that is impressing people even more than the Oculus Rift. At $799, it will be $200 more than the Oculus, but will include a lot more too. It will have two base stations to help track your movement, and two custom controllers. This will allow the device to track your movement through space, not just the direction you are pointing. For all you investors out there you might be wondering what the top Weartech stocks are. Motley Fool has cataloged the top 3 Wearable Stocks for you to invest in. Of course, Apple leads the board because of iPhones and iPads. But if you want to invest in a proven company that is adopting Weartech, UnderArmour might be the best play. Microsoft is taking the lead on a new Internet of Things (IoT) standards group, that also includes Cisco, Intel, Qualcomm, Samsung, and many others. The goal is to create standards that work across devices. Formerly a part of the Open Interconnect Consortium, they new Open Connectivity Foundation will be creating standards for all companies to use. Noticeably absent are Google and Apple. Google already created open standards for IoT devices called Weave and Brillo, and Apple usually introducing their own standards that other people can adopt. Will-i-am is back with a new smartwatch called “Dial” in the UK. He sat down with the Telegraph and said that even though Puls was a beta project, the new dial will be a improved version of the Puls. The 1.63 inch screen has a 2 MP front face camera and will be an untethered 4G device. You will get a Bluetooth headset with it to make calls, stream music, track fitness and more. The Dial is expected in early April in the UK only. Wearable devices are great, and people would love to connect them directly to the internet through a mobile carrier, but having a slot for a SIM card could make them susceptible to water damage, or even make them bigger than the designers would like. There’s got to be a better way! Now there is, with the eSIM specification from the GSMA! You’ll be able to associate devices with your account, and reprogram them later if necessary. The GSMA has also announced that regular SIMs will get their own version of this spec in June 2016. Finally, the Wearable Technology show is March 15-16 in London at the ExCel Center. If you are planning on going, please let us know. Would like to have a roving reporter there to come back with what’s going on. How the Phone Carrier Balls Affect Wearable Technology Jeff’s Take Verizon tried to explain their coverage with different colored balls rolling down a ramp. Red was Verizon and they had more balls than anyone else. The other companies were really upset because they had balls, too. Big balls and small balls. So they started showing their own balls. T-Mobile came out with a claim they edged out Verizon as the fastest carrier. This was on a study by OpenSignal. However, RootMetrics declared Verizon the fastest – making Verizon’s balls better. What do Phone Carrier’s balls have to do with WearTech? Well, as we talked about earlier, Will-i-am is not the only person trying to use their balls. In the next 12 months you will see some pretty hefty competition where weartech will start to really compete as an alternative to a smartphone. If Carrie Underwood thinks that her cell phone was her best friend and lifeline to the outside world, then she might be getting ready for the watch that will replace it. Granted, it might not play Clash with Friends or Words with Clans, but it will make calls, send texts via voice recognition, and more. And as for the Carriers’ balls, they’re going to get bigger. As we reported last week – AT&T and Verizon are working on their 5G Balls, which will really start to compete with home Internet speeds. It will also mean more ways to connect. Leaving your phone and wallet at home when you take a run. Wanna stop for a Bear-claw? No problem. Your watch will have the balls to find you a store and pay for your indulgence. Luke’s Take Most people don’t switch carriers very often, I rarely hear about people switching, and it seems like everyone complains about theirs. If there was an obvious “best” one, people would all be going to that one, and every year one of the other carriers would die. But the competition is good, and every carrier works to improve their speeds & coverage. All of these “independent” studies have to be paid for by someone, and the data isn’t shared with all the carriers once it’s complete. So the only studies you hear about from any company are the ones that they paid for, and they only mention the ones where they look good. I would love to see more companies grow a pair, or even more, of those balls, because we all win. I have played some games on my watch, and it got old pretty fast. holding your arm up while standing gets tiring, although playing a game at a table where you could rest your arm works better. There is an old adage about network speeds. If people have faster internet, they don’t just do the same things faster, they do new things. If you’re over the age of 20, you’ve probably noticed this with video on mobile. When speeds were slow, you only watched video on your home connection, now you can watch it on your mobile device. Wearable devices will be more capable, more useful, and probably change in whole new ways as speeds increase. Contact Wearable Today Contact Jeff - Contact Luke 608-205-4378 Twitter: @WearableToday Facebook: Facebook.com/wearabletoday Google+ : plus.google.com/+ThisWeekInGoogleGlass RSS Bandwidth by Cachefly - Get Great Deals on WearTech - Tip the Show!Thank You!
56 minutes | Feb 16, 2016
VR Headsets: Fad or Future?
VR Wearables: Fad or Future? This week we look closer at the world of VR headsets. In the next year many companies will come out with products along this trend. Some will cost $100 and some $1000. But will you be adding it to your mobile collection? Wearable Today Episode #97 Show Notes Apple has never released any of their sales numbers for the Apple Watch, but that’s not stopping analysts from taking an educated guess. Jason Low at Canalys says that Apple sold over 5 million Apple Watches in the 4th quarter of 2015, bringing total sales over 12 million for the year. This would make Apple the market leader in Smart watches, although not overshadowing the 37 million “band devices” sold in 2015, which Fitbit comfortable leads. Will 5G change wearables? That’s right, the successor to 4G is already in discussion by Verizon and AT&T, and the hope is to have lower latency, faster speeds, and even smaller devices. This could mean a big change for wearables, as storing information on the wearable won’t be as big of a concern, since streaming data could be as fast as local storage. Early AT&T field tests could be happening in Austin, Texas by the end of the year, but of course, these will be internal tests that require new hardware. Many fitness brands have bought up software products to expand their lineup, and increase their marketing reach, and now Runkeeper joins the list. Asics purchased Runkeeper to bring the two fitness brands closer together, and provides Asics the ability to communicate directly with Runkeepers 45 million users. Wired has more thoughts about this might impact the future of both brands, and reminds us that Under Armour owns MyFitnessPal, and Adidas has Runtastic. Thus far, all these brands have been interoperable, but perhaps soon we will start to see more division as brands aim to build an ecosystem around a singular point. Kevin Plank, the CEO of Under Armour met with Fortune Magazine last week to talk about the Super Bowl, their athletes, and wearable technology. In the 23 minute interview, he discusses the incredible growth they’ve seen, how tracking your own biometrics is the wave of the future, and much more. He is very excited about the future of weartech, and the value that Under Armour can provide by aggregating all the data that people are collecting through devices like the HealthBox. Watch the whole interview and hear the passion of the person in charge of the entire company over on fortune.com. Mobile World Congress is next week. TechCrunch looks at some of the weartech that is coming from the conference. Samsung will be debuting the S7, LG will unveil the G5, and lots of VR from HTC and Samsung. Even Blackberry will have some announcements that might just vault them in the Android arena. Ready to upgrade your thermometer? That is what Flo thermometer is trying to do. A simple heat reading device, it can not only tell your temperature via pointing the device at your head, you can also create a series of memories so you can keep track of you or your child’s health. You can also use this device to check the temperature of other items like liquids you are about to consume. Standing while at work is a tough gig. Fatigue continually works against you and postitions such as doctors need to be able to keep sharp. A team of Japanese researchers are working on a wearable chair called “Archelis” – or “Walkable Chair”. The idea is for the doctor to strap into this device and support the muscles.Of course, this has many other applications for jobs which require standing. For a doctor, they can better relax while on a multi-hour surgery. VR Headsets: Fad or Future? Jeff’s Take Google is working on a stand-alone VR headset – a mobile device on its own to keep your unwired and your phone battery full. Best part is we know it can be done with quad-core processors and high-end mobile graphics. The real question is: will people buy into it. R. Buckminster Fuller said “Humanity is acquiring all the right technology for all the wrong reasons.” After all, we have almost ditched the main reason why we have a cell phone because we can text and Facebook and play Smart Jewels and Zombies… or something like that. In the meantime, I hear how people want an iPad but can’t justify the $399 price tag. Especially if “Words with Clans” can be run on their phones. Did Google Glass look into the reality of public VR? Maybe it was the $1,500 price tag that brought the device to its knees. Still, if it was $500, would Glass have been around longer? People like new and shiny, but might not buy into it. Further, a big bulky system that sits on your head might be as inhibiting as a pair of glasses or large cup headphones. We’ll learn to live with it but we would rather have smaller, un-obtrusive items sitting on our heads. We can turn a smartphone into a VR unit with a simple piece of cardboard. That makes me wonder if people will shell out another $500 for a stand-alone headset. Would it replace a TV or become a companion. If that is the case, will a family of 4 want to spend $2,000 for stand-alone headsets? Luke’s Take Smartphones used to be only for geeks, but now they’re common place. People are willing to adopt new technology, but it has to be worthwhile. Watching TV or a movie in a private theater has it’s benefits, but not enough for everyone to need one. Video games will be one of the first big successes for VR, as the experience will be a lot more immersive for first-person shooters. The real nut to crack will be social aspects. Facebook and Twitter are the two big juggernauts, but the advantage of having these in a VR world are not as obvious. Is it a wall of tweets, or a sphere of posts. Do you travel around a virtual world and look at all the posts from that area? I’m sure a lot of these are being experimented with right now, but it will take a little while to perfect. Content creation is key as well. If I could share a VR experience from my upcoming trip, I’m sure there would be more interest from people that have VR headsets. It’s like cameras on phones. Once everyone was carrying a camera with an internet connection, they could show people exactly what they were doing, not just tell them. Facebook posts used to be mostly text, with a picture every now and then. Now it’s mostly pictures with just a little text. Once people start posting 360 video experiences, people will be very tempted to get that VR headset. Contact Wearable Today Contact Jeff - Contact Luke 608-205-4378 Twitter: @WearableToday Facebook: Facebook.com/wearabletoday Google+ : plus.google.com/+ThisWeekInGoogleGlass RSS Bandwidth by Cachefly - Get Great Deals on WearTech - Tip the Show!Thank You!
56 minutes | Feb 8, 2016
Watch Out for those Affordable Fake Wearables
Episode 96 of Wearable Today This week Luke shows off more of his C-3P0 build and his first post on Thingaverse with the eye piece he configured for the mask. I was geeking out over my new QSC Touchmix-16 that I got this morning and it’s wearable component. I was configuring this board sitting in my living room. Wearable Today Episode 96 Show Notes Android Wear has new updates coming soon! New gestures are being added that allow more hands-free navigation, devices return to ambient mode even quicker when you drop your wrist, and you can even make calls from your watch, if it has a speaker built in. On top of this, the second generation Moto 360 is already receiving this update, which includes better indoor run tracking that can interface with apps like MapMyRun and Fitbit. Oral Roberts University is taking an interesting approach to keeping their students in shape. All students are being required to wear Fitbit activity trackers, and to sync the data with school systems so that they can be monitored by staff members. The Tulsa, Oklahoma-based school hasn’t yet heard any outcry from students or parents, but some privacy advocates are saying the data should be opt-in instead of required. If you’re watching Wearable Today, you’re probably already ahead of the curve on knowing about wearable technology. Let’s look even further into the future with this article from the Washington Post. Here they discuss some weartech that augments your body’s strengths and gives it a place to sit, stealth technology built in to your clothes to hide you from eyes above, and technology that uses your body as the conduit for information. If you have a caffeine addiction, you should take a look at this next wearable. Joule is a wrist strap that provides 65mg of caffeine over 4 hours. The creator claims that this is a faster way to get your fix, and better than the ups and downs of drinking coffee. Right now the product is launching on indiegogo with a delivery date of later this year. Can weartech make you an artist? Mihkel Joala thinks so, and has created a device to do it. The SprayPainter uses a smartphone and a spraygun with a light on it to automatically create works of art just by waving your hand over the surface. You setup the smartphone to point at the area you want to paint, and then as you run the spray gun over the surface, the smartphone triggers SprayPainter to start and stop spraying, at up to 200 times per second. By using multiple colors of spray paint, you can make full color graffitti in designs much more complex than your own skills may allow. The indiegogo campaign has already full funded, and early backers should receive their $149 device in July of this year. Here is a new way to keep notes. The Rocketbook Wave is a conventional pen and paper 80 page notebook that sends your notes to a mobile device. When you want to clean out your Rocketbook, simply put it in the microwave and it will clear all the notes. The pens are a special thermochromic ink that disappears at 140 degrees F Students at TU Delft in the Netherlands showed the power of printed stainless steel with the introduction of the arc bike. A three month project, the bike was created as part of a research project on how metal 3D printing could be done. Watch Out for Fake Wearables Jeff: When I was at CES I saw many versions of smartwatches. There were a couple that looked a little like the Apple Watch. Of course, when you have a popular product, there will be companies that try to buck the system. In the infographic on Wearable Today, they go over some devices that can be mistaken for the Apple watch. Devices that cost 1/10th of what the actual product does. And the same goes for other devices as well. In 2014, many reports of fake Fitbit wearables were showing up. In January of 2016, US Customs and border protection seized over $35,000 worth of knock-off Fitbit bands that came from Hong Kong. Wearable technology is growing by leaps and bounds. There are going to be some people who will try to get in on that action however they can. Luke: Even the Moto 360 isn’t above being knocked off. The first round smartwatch to gain popularity, the knockoffs came fast and furious. But most of them are not very high quality. Most of the knock offs have very low resolution screens, don’t run a real smartwatch OS, and are little more than bluetooth headsets with tiny screens. We found a review of one of these moto 360 knock offs, and it shows just how disappointing we’ve been making these knock offs sound.
56 minutes | Feb 1, 2016
How Wearables Could Change the Political Race
Luke and I have been doing some house cleaning. Luke shows off some old iPod mini watch bands and I talk about the tech upgrades in the house including a new Netgear Nighthawk X4S Smart WiFi Router. Wearable Today Episode #95 Show Notes If you’ve been to a hospital for anything serious, you’ve probably had wires hooked up to your chest to check your heart health. This is called an ECG and can be an awkward experience for people. The wires usually run to machine next to the bed, so if you need to go to the bathroom or otherwise move around it can be quite an ordeal. HealthWatch has come up with a solution, with a tight fitting shirt that has the appropriate technology embedded into it. And the monitoring device attaches to the shirt too, making the monitoring more constant as well. This could open up the possibility of at-home monitoring, freeing up hospital beds and lowering healthcare costs. The educational aspects of wearable technology are just getting started. In a new video from my friend Paolo Tosolini, Nikki Kloeppel provides some 360 degree coaching, where you sit in the middle of a job interview and can watch all the participants. Although the content is short, it’s easy to imagine having this kind of immersive education for all sorts of topics. You can watch it with Google Cardboard, or on the YouTube website at the link in the show notes. The New York times has a bold article on the future of wearables, saying that right now, most of the wearables you see will end up in your junk drawer. His personal experience with a FitBit, a Jawbone UP, and an Apple Watch has turned into an indictment of the entire industry, with some numbers to back it up. Most sales numbers have not met expectations, and the industry has not grown as fast as it was predicted to a couple years ago. You can read the full article, which includes a few reasons why he feels like the industry has had slow adoption, over on the New York Times website. The luxury smartwatch family is getting another member! This one comes from Isaac Mizrahi in the form of a Swarovski crystal-studded watch for women that works with both iOS and Android. Engineered by HP, the device has a 3-line display that appears within a traditional watch face, and allows users to send and receive text messages, and receive all the standard notifications. The device will launch this week for only $249. Finally, at CES I met up with the folks at Blocks – the modular smartwatch. I interviewed them for Geekazine, as well as Fitbit Blaze, H2OPal and Quitbi Are wearable tattoos here? Kinda. The MC10 is working on reshaping healthcare with the introduction of the BioStamp Connect System. While you are not going to a parlour, finding the tramp stamp and laying on a table to have it put on, the BioStamp patch will create a “Tight skin coupling”. You can have multiple patches on your body. These devices offer 3-axis accelerometer and Gyroscope, integrated electrodes for sEMG and electro cardiac activity, and other sensor information. If you don’t like the standard cable for your Android or iPhone – even cables for your wearables, then Instructables has a great way to help curtail the cord noise. Did you know you can curl your own cables with nothing but a pencil and hairdryer? Guess what – you can also uncurl cables as well. This video will show you how. How Wearables Could Change a Political Race Jeff’s View: VR is a great way for you to watch the Iowa Caucus from home and feel like you are at the event. But that might not be the only way we can enjoy the front runners vie for political office. Imagine this: You have a front row computer monitor to sensors attached to the candidates. From heart rate to perspiration levels, you will know when someone is uncomfortable with a question, if they will start a fight over something said, or if they may be telling the truth or not. In the race between John Kennedy and Richard Nixon, it was the debate where Nixon perspired too much which caused the public to turn. People watch and report on the facial expressions of candidates to determine if they are truthful. So why not add wearable data into the mix? If could be a new level of politics – the wearable level. People monitoring office members to make sure they are in the best of health when making decisions for our City, State and Country. Any major change in their vitals and their staff can advise to prevent any embarrassing issues. We could see how a campaign can stress out a person. We could see if Donald Trump or Marco Rubio is sleep deprived. We could get body readings from Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders to figure out who is confident and who is hiding something. President Obama has already been seen with a Fitbit Surge. Data that I am sure he shares with Michelle and maybe his doctor. And this could be a great feel-good social moment for anybody running for office. Publicly display their wearable data for people to run the numbers and keep active on the campaign trail. Luke’s View: Not only can it be used for receiving data from politicians, it could also be used to contribute to the political process. Instead of just watching them, they could watch you. Show data to politicians ex: hundreds of active users in this area, we need more public trails. Monitor air quality with a wearable, share data with your favorite organization. Use wearables to vote on issues through connected apps. Keep constantly connected to your reps and send them data, pictures, or feedback on the political decisions. Contact Wearable Today Contact Jeff - Contact Luke 608-205-4378 Twitter: @WearableToday Facebook: Facebook.com/wearabletoday Google+ : plus.google.com/+ThisWeekInGoogleGlass RSS Bandwidth by Cachefly - Get Great Deals on WearTech - Tip the Show!Thank You!
54 minutes | Jan 25, 2016
Is 2016 the Year of VR?
I came back from another conference and we’ve got two weeks of news to catch up on. Luke is working hard on his C3P0 outfit and shows off the progress. Show Notes for Wearable Today Ep 94 Apple is building VR! According to the Daily Mail, Doug Bowman has joined Apple, and as a former director of Human-Computer Interaction with a focus on VR, they think this points to same big changes at Apple. No other information is known at this time, but the fact that Apple is getting behind VR, it points to a very interesting 2016. 4D rides at amusement parks have been pretty popular for a while now, but what if you could look all around you and enjoy the experience in VR or AR? Darren Brown’s Ghost Train will be an all new type of experience, where you are inside an actual train car, suspended 10 feet in the air. Multiple participants should be able to ride the experience at once, but how it will play out is yet to be determined. The ride will be launching at Thorpe Park in London later this Spring. MyKronoz is a new Swiss company focusing on building smartwatches. Their new ZeRound watch connects to Android and iOS devices, and runs it own custom software. At only $99, this watch provides a nice entry level option for people only concerned with making calls, getting notifications, and basic fitness tracking. Look for it launching in March of this year, just a few weeks away. Samsung is doubling down on VR, taking on the task of producing more VR content themselves. They’re opening a studio in New York to build the experiences, which will likely be exclusing to Samsung devices initially. We look at FitPal and it’s crowdfund Focus – is 2016 the year of VR? From Jeff: This year is the year for VR goggles – so the industry is implying. Oculus was a big name at CES and I have been seeing a lot of companies using VR. While at NAMM, I watched an Augmented Reality segment with drummer Steve Gadd on different Yamaha drum sets. I watched a company with a VR drumset.I even listened to House of Cards star Kevin Spacey talk about how VR will change multiple landscapes. Being able to emmerse yourself from anywhere. This last weekend with the east coast blizzard, you could have stayed home, put on goggles and still attended a show.In five years we’re going to see VR change some businesses. For example, you will have a choice to see Episode 9 in 2D, 3D, 4D, or VR. Imagine that – you can watch X-Wings and Tie Fighters fly over your head in battle, or watch a piviol scene and hear a voice behind you. You turn your head and feel like you’re in-between a conversation. Even though that is a ways away, companies that try to adopt the new technologies will be doing it now. That is the one thing about the Porn industry. They are those early adopters. And from what I saw, the news at the AVN awards this last weekend was Virtual Reality was kicking into high gear. From Luke: I think this year will be a big turning point for VR. That’s been said every year for the past several years, but we’re finally seeing the hardware come out, and the software to back it up. The Oculus Rift has gone in to real production, and I’ve heard several people say the HTC Vive is an amazing experience. Microsoft is going HoloLens, Google has cardboard, and now Apple has brought someone on board to help tackle their issues. Everyone is in the space now. One of the big issues I haven’t seen addressed is how this will work in the home. Will people have to have empty rooms so they can have a holodeck? Seated experiences in a rotating desk chair work pretty well, but eventually people will want to move around more, and it won’t be as immersive if you’re just sitting. But all that hardware will be expensive, will the average person really want to do it? I think back to the Wii, when people made more room to play in their living room, instead of just sitting. VR takes that to the next level, or at least it could. Contact Wearable Today Contact Jeff - Contact Luke 608-205-4378 Twitter: @WearableToday Facebook: Facebook.com/wearabletoday Google+ : plus.google.com/+ThisWeekInGoogleGlass RSS Bandwidth by Cachefly - Get Great Deals on WearTech - Tip the Show!Thank You!
50 minutes | Jan 12, 2016
Awesome Wearables We Saw at CES 2016
Huawei Honor Z1 Wearable As I do every year, I went to CES to check out the new technologies. Of course, that included weartech as well. I am back and have a few items to show. I show off the Huawei Honor wearable and Sony Walkman I got at the show. Wearable Today Episode #93 Show Notes Under Armour has unveiled its “Connected Fitness” platform, along with the first three devices: The HealthBox, the SpeedForm Gemeni 2 RE shoe, and set of connected headphones. The HealthBox includes a few other devices including a fitness band and scale, and will connect with the rest of the platform to help change the way athletes live. The devices will retail for between $150 and $400. The largest organ on the human body is the skin, so it’s important to take care of it. L’Oreal announced a new wearable at CES that helps detect the UV damage that hits our skin every day. It’s a patch that you put on your skin, and connects to your smartphone to tell you how much UV exposure you’re getting. Able to be worn for up to 5 days in the current iteration, the device should be lauching by the end of this year. What if your body became part of your next wearable tech? The TipTalk is a new smart band that attaches your watch, and can vibrate. But not just any vibrations, these vibrations are more like a speaker, and when you stick your finger in your ear, you can listen to calls or voicemails, completely covertly. Samsung says the device will retail for less than $100 by the end of the year. The Oculus Rift has come out of development and is ready for consumers… for $600. This price seems too high for some people, but the creator has taken his defense public, citing user experience as the main reason for the inflated price. Not wanting to cut corners and cause the destruction of VR before it even starts, Oculus is expecting technology costs to drop over time as they have in every other field, and eventually reach a lower price point. Palmer Luckey, the creator, cited Tesla as company following a similar route, creating great experiences to build excitement before creating more affordable experiences. CES Wearables – Jeff talks about: Ember – a coffee mug that tells the temperature Lumo – helping you sit up straight OhMiBod – for Keegal exercises 3D Rudder – a board to move you around in VR gaming 80x lens for your iPhone Oliba – wearable tracker for your stuffed animals Griffin Travel Power Bank for Apple Watch Wearable Translator – speaks 6 different languages Fitbit Blaze – newest Fitbit wearable also alerts with texts, phone calls Blocks – the startup that puts modules in the watch band H20Pal – a hydration tracking system MyKronos ZRound – newest wearable watch from MyKronos Luke also notes Twitter Backing Muzik Withings Go Belty the smart belt
71 minutes | Dec 28, 2015
Top 10 Wearables of 2015
A snowy night I came back early for the show due to the major snowstorm. Luke shows off some weartech gifts he got to continue on his C3P0 build. We also go over some of the expectations at CES 2016. Wearable Today Episode #92 Show Notes We’ve talked weartech for your wrist, your eyes, your belt, and your butt, but what about… your brain? Wearables are now here that monitor your brain, but can they be really effective? CBC News talked to some experts who say that even if these wearables can monitor 1-200 brain cells, that’s a minscule amount compared to billions of brain cells most people have. They also talk to some makers of brain weartech that actually stimulates your brain, but at this point most of the results seem to be anecdotal, with nothing concretely attributable to the new wearable devices. In “Big Bang Theory”, Howard built a contraption to cheat his wearable. If you are not an electrical engineer, you might need some other ways to do it. From movement to sleep, you can trick your weartech. But really, whom are you fooling? You may have heard last week that Philips began blocking 3rd party bulbs from working with their Hue Bridge. If you did, you certainly heard the backlash from frustrated customers, and you weren’t alone. Philips is now reversing that decision and will be rolling out an update soon that allows 3rd party bulbs back in the pool. Philips does caution that these bulbs might have incompatibility issues, but they leave that up to the user to determine. In the past we’ve talked about how you can track your vitals for preventative measures. PDFDevices goes through points you can take note to so you are healthy and safe in the coming years. Many people predicted that the Apple Watch would spell the end for companies like Fitbit, who only offer basic fitness trackers without all the bells and whistles of a smartwatch. But looking at Amazon and Apple’s App Store, that doesn’t seem to hold much truth. Amazon announced that the Fitbit Charge was one of the top 3 devices using the same-day delivery option, and the App Store ranking for the Fitbit app was in the top 5 for several days after Christmas, indicating that it was getting a lot of new downloads. Maybethe 8 year old company actually knows a thing or two about creating great products at the right price. Earlier today several photos of the Google Glass Reboot hit the web. The main design hasn’t changed but it looks like there are many new features. Magnetic charge/sync, foldable bow, front light, 5GHz wireless, new battery and improved heat management. Finally, a larger prism and better placement of the power button may make Glass more useable by the masses. What to Expect for WearTech at CES 2016 I take a look at a few companies exhibiting. These companies include: Righteye, helping with vision performance Mocacare, a heart rate tracker with more options Withings, a popular weartech company will be unveiling new products Supersuit, gaming gear Wearable Today’s Top 10 Wearable Technology of 2015 Who made the list? You’ll have to watch the show to find out… You can check out the slideshow
71 minutes | Dec 23, 2015
Star Wearables: The Weartech of Star Wars
Back from London for a new episode! Luke was at the Theater all week acting as Luke Skywalker. Of course, no spoilers on this special Star Wars edition of Wearable Today. Wearable Today Episode #91 Show Notes: The Pebble Time brand of smartwatches are getting a native Health app built by Pebble itself. Previously limited to 3rd party apps, now you can track your steps and sleep with an app that integrates into the Pebble timeline. This will make the health stats much more visible, and Pebble Health will automatically sets goals and give you tips for a more active lifestyle. The functionality will be coming to the Pebble Time, Time Steel, and Time Round devices in the next firmware update. The HTC Vive is one of the most anticipated 3D Heads-up gaming devices in recent months. They’ve made some huge breakthroughs as Engadget reports on a developer forum where the manufacturer is very pleased with recent work. Recently, HTC announced that they would be pushing back the launch date to April of next year, using the extra 6 months to provide a much better product. Early reports have already given the technology high praise, and this new breakthrough should make the device more stable for consumer use. Do you remember Magic Leap? The company got a $542 million investment last year from Google, Qualcomm, and others, then went dormant. Now they’re back, raising another $827 million to continue their research and product development. The videos shown so far for the weartech could have competitors scrambling. However, they first have to actually release a product. No timeline updates for release have been given. You can read more over at wareable.com. 2015 has been a breakout year for wearables, with smart watches and fitness trackers becoming almost common place, and constant new announcements in the field of VR and AR. Forbes has put together it’s list of the biggest wearable news stories of the year, and it might surprise you to learn that most of the items are things that didn’t go so well. They mention lackluster performance from Apple, Google, and Samsung, while Fitbit stays the course. Will all these companies make big strides next year, or will one rise to lead the pack? CastAR sends refunds to most backers who didn’t receive their units. The company raised over a million dollars in 2013 for the headset. Not only are those who didn’t receive a headset getting refunded, the company will supply them with a headset when they are officially ready in 2017. Omate is another smart watch running Android and it will include the 3G radio along with the complete Android 5.1 OS – not just Android Wear. This makes the watch usable without connection to a phone. I show off the Scottevest SEV 8.0 fleece jacket I used while in London. This is a 19 pocket jacket with RFID protective pocket to keep hackers from getting your information. The Star Wearables Want C-3PO Parts – the Dented Helmet Lobot’s Headset Stormtrooper How-to’s Z-6 Jetpack All things Good-guys Full size BB-8 Bad Guys Luke’s C3P0 Build
Terms of Service
Your Privacy Choices
© Stitcher 2023