Accessories, News/Rumors

Philips announces ‘Hue Go’ WiFi-enabled portable light

Philips released a new addition to its line of iPhone-connected lights, the Hue Go.

The new product is a WiFi-enabled portable light that brings portability and autonomy to the company’s iOS-connected Hue smart lighting range of products.

Hue Go features a rechargeable internal battery for a guaranteed three hours of use when is not on the base, and its bowl-like shape makes it possible to be positioned in various ways so it can serve multiple functions as an accent light.

“Philips Hue Go can be moved from the garden to the living room to the bedroom without the worry of wires; letting you create and enjoy a new ambience each time. It can also be positioned in different ways to adapt to your needs; enhance a living space by positioning it to face a wall washing it with light, add ambience to an intimate dinner by placing it as a center piece on the table or focused on a piece of work by directing the light where you need it.”

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The key feature is its ability to reproduce more than 16 million colors, which can be chosen via onscreen controls in Philips’ iOS app or another hundreds of apps that take advantage of the Hue API.

In addition, Hue Go also includes a built-in control button that allows you to change the color of the light to one of several scenes even when your iPhone isn’t nearby. You can select between Cozy Candle, Sunday Coffee, Meditation, Enchanted Forest, and Night Adventure, and the company says each one of these color schemes has a unique mix of colors. 

Philips Hue Go will go on sale in the U.S. at the end of May or in early June, and it will cost at $99.95.

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Apple plans virtual online try-ons and personal setup for gold & steel models

Apple will offer customers to virtually try on an Apple Watch or Apple Watch Edition and receive setup support. It is a great option for those, who are unsure as to which model to get or which band combination would look best, especially for those, who are unable to hop on over to the Apple retail store and check out the various combinations.

Virtual try-on means the ability for customers to video chat with an Apple Online Store representative who will personally try-on and model Apple Watch collections and band combinations. In addition, Edition buyers will be given an ability to have a “personalized pre-sales experience” either over phone or online chat.

Customers will be allowed virtual personal setup via the Apple Online Store. These online specialists will walk the consumer through the Apple Watch unboxing process, the setup of the iPhone Companion application, pairing with an iPhone via Bluetooth, and installing apps from the Apple Watch App Store.

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However this online virtual personal setup feature will only be offered to customers purchase the Apple Watch or Apple Watch Edition versions, so if you’re planning to buy the Apple Watch Sport watch, you are recommended to either browse Apple’s website or head on over to the store for more information.

This is similar to services Apple has offered to its consumers in the past in select European regions, so it will be the first for Apple in the US.

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Apple removes competing health and fitness bands from stores ahead of Apple Watch debut

Ahead of the April 24th launch of its first smart watches, Apple has begun removing competing health and fitness products from its retail stores. According to the Re/code reports, the company stops selling Jawbone UP and the Nike+ Fuelband in its retail stores in San Francisco, Palo Alto, Los Angeles, and New York.

The two fitness accessories are also unavailable to purchase through the company’s online store, and it seems the only remaining fitness band available for purchase is the MIO Alpha Heart Rate Monitor Watch. Both Apple stores also still offer non-wrist worn fitness tracking devices, like the Jawbone UP Move and the Wahoo TICKR X Heart Rate Monitor. 

Mio chief Liz Dickinson also said, that the iPhone maker notified her several months ago that the Mio would also be removed from their shelves “They said they brought in a new executive in the marketing area who wanted to make the Apple brand more front and center and clean up the number of accessories.”

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Last year Bose products also lost shelf space in Apple stores after the NFL banned Apple-owned Beats headphones from appearing on camera to accommodate a Bose sponsorship deal, and Bose filed a lawsuit against Beats.

Apple plans to debut its highly expected smartwatch on April 24. The company hasn’t revealed a lot of details on its features. Apple Watch starts at $349 for the 38mm Apple Watch Sport, while the stainless steel Apple Watch will be available from $549. The high-end solid gold Apple Edition, meanwhile, starts at $10,000.  

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New iPhone reportedly receives Force Touch and pink color option

Apple is reportedly planning to add its Force Touch technology to the next version of the iPhone.

Force Touch was first announced in the Apple Watch last September and allows a device to detect the level of deformation caused by the user’s press.

Force Touch helps products distinguish between a light tap and a hard press, enabling new gestures. The company calls the advance its “most significant new sensing capability since Multi Touch.” 

According to the source, Apple’s next-generation iPhones will see 4.7 and 5.5-inch screen sizes along with the same resolution. However, a new color option might be introduced. Apple is said to be planning to offer its users a pink version to its existing space gray, silver, and gold iPhone lineup. 

New iPhone reportedly receive Force Touch and pink color option

In addition to Force Touch technology, little was unveiled about the next-generation iPhones. The next-generation devices will likely be called the “iPhone 6s” and the “iPhone 6s Plus,” and are reportedly provided upgraded A9 processors. Finally, they are expected to feature camera upgrades, more RAM, and enhanced Touch ID. The company will likely debut the new iPhones in September.

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Hands-on with the Apple Watch

Following yesterday’s event, a number of attendees were provided with the opportunity to go hands-on with a finished version of the Apple Watch with fully functional software.

Apple allowed journalists to try out demo versions of the new device when it was announced last fall, but this is much different. This time around, they were given the ability to launch apps, navigate menus and play with different features.

Several sources have shared new tidbits and impressions on the device, which we’ve rounded up below.  They are expected to help create a proper picture of what to wait from your Watch next month. 

TechCrunch:

TechnoBuffalo:

The Verge:

CNET:

Mashable:

Apple Watch is set to go on sale April 24, with preorders and hands-on previews in stores beginning April 10. The Sport version will be available starting from $349, the stainless steel version will start at $549, and the luxury Apple Watch Edition will start at $10,000.

In addition to Apple wearables, the company also announced an all-new 12-inch MacBook with a high-resolution Retina display and a click-less Force Touch trackpad. The MacBook will be available April 10 starting at $1,299.

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Ahead of launch, Apple Watch wins noted iF Design Gold Award

Ahead an expected debut in April, Apple’s Watch won design awards at the 2015 iF Design Awards, an annual industrial design competition dating back to 1954.

TIF upcoming device was given the iF Design Gold award from the iF International Forum Design. The organization declared that the Cupertino-designed smartwatch is “already an icon.”

“The idea of combining classic materials such as leather and metal with state-of-the-art technology to create a very individual fashion accessory has resulted in a delightful product offering a holistic user experience. The Apple Watch scores highly for each design detail and is an altogether extraordinary piece of design. For us, it is already an icon.”

Overall, 1,124 products were granted an iF Label, while only 47 won the gold award for excellence.

The wearables went up against more than 3,200 other designs in the Product discipline, the largest iF award area that deals with several commercial industries, including vehicles, medical devices, smartphones, computers, tableware, kitchen equipment, furniture, bathroom products and more.

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Each product was judged by a number of criteria, including design quality, workmanship, choice of materials, degree of innovation, environmental friendliness, functionality, ergonomics, visualization for use, safety, brand value and branding, and universal design. 

It is not the first time, when Apple’s creations are granted an award. Nearly every company’s product has won one, including most of the iPhone and iPad case the company has produced.

The Apple Watch is set to debut in April in several countries.

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Apple Watch reportedly to get ‘Power Reserve’ mode to conserve battery life

Ahead of the company‘s media event, The New York Times has shared a piece about the culmination of the Watch project.

Among the new details is the existence of an unannounced “Power Reserve” mode for the device that will display only the time in order to stretch the smart-watch’s battery longer and make for less frequent charging. According to the company’s statement, the watch battery is estimated to last a full day, requiring an owner to charge it at night, similar to a smartphone. The low-power mode will display the time only and will be able to do so on even very little battery.

Apple has said the watch battery is estimated to last a full day, requiring a user to charge it at night, similar to a smartphone. The company also developed a yet-to-be-announced feature called Power Reserve, a mode that will run the watch on low energy but display only the time, according to one employee.”

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The wearables were previously reported to get approximately 19 hours of average usage time per day, combining in-app functions with standby time, as well as 2.5 hours of straight heavy app usage. Improving battery life appears to be a main goal of development since the Watch’s initial debut in September. Tim Cook has also said several times that the product will need to be charged every night, implying approximately one day of battery life.

The source also reported that while the new product has been widely tested by Apple employees, the iPhone maker did work to conceal a lot of those prototypes by disguising them to resemble Samsung smartwatches.

Apple is expected to offer more specifics at its event on March 9th, where the company will reveal more details about Apple Watch.

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Apple Watch makes US magazine cover debut with Victoria’s Secret Angel

In October 2014, the Apple Watch released its magazine cover with Vogue China, featuring the Chinese model Liu Wen. Now, as the company prepares to reveal the Apple Watch in April, the device is given its U.S. magazine cover debut. Its March issue will feature cover model Candice Swanepoel, best known for her work as a Victoria’s Secret Angel, wearing Apple’s unreleased smartwatch. 

Considering Swanepoel’s athletic prowess, it was the best accessory for her sporty cover shoot. She told SELF, “I’m an athlete. I use every single muscle, especially my core and arms, when I pose. It’s so important for me to feel strong!”

Candice Swanepoel will be demonstrating the Apple Watch Sport with a white fluoroelastomer band. Self also gives a brief overview of Apple Watch’s features, such as its accelerometer, heart rate sensor, GPS and WiFi in print and in photos. 

Self will probably one of many publications to feature the Apple Watch in the coming weeks as the product‘s launch approaches, and the company plans to market the Apple Watch to a wide range of potential customers.

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Candice Swanepoel

Aside from existing details on the upcoming device, the short blurb on SELF’s website does not give new information regarding Apple’s forthcoming wearable. It is also unclear if the print version will bring a more comprehensive look at the new product.

Apple Watch makes US magazine cover debut with Victoria's Secret Angel

Liu Wen

The iPhone maker asked several developers to make content for the Apple Watch to have their apps completed by mid-February. Apple is also reportedly inviting certain developers to its Cupertino headquarters to put the finishing touches on some Apple Watch apps. 

According to Apple CEO Tim Cook, the Apple Watch will hit the market in April, but the exact date is still unclear.

Accessories, News/Rumors

iRing-motion controller to direct your music on iPhone and iPad

Motion control continues to enter the tech world and one of the latest inventions is a really brilliant idea. IK Multimedia’s iRing turns your iPad into a musical instrument and allows users to control music using hand gestures alone.

The iRing system consists of two pedestal-like objects, which you place between your fingers on each hand. There are three linear dots on one side and three dots aligned like a triangle on the other. Each side has a various pattern that the iRing Music Maker recognizes. The triangular ring should be worn on your left hand and the linear one on your right. To produce different control results, you are tasked to waving your hand in different directions. The triangle pattern ring must be used to speed up or slow down the beat by moving your hand closer to and further from the iPad camera. With the iRing you can control what type of bass line you will use. You are also given the ability to randomize the loops by rotating your hand 90 degrees. The patterns controls are ranged depending on how close or far you are from the screen.

The iRing requires no batteries, no constant app updates, or any special drivers. They fit between two fingers like some high-tech brass knuckles, so, they fit every size hand. They are very comfortable to wear for a long time, as each ring weighs just 5.67 grams.

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The new accessory makes it possible for you to mix loops, trigger beats, and set parameters using the special iRing Music Maker app.iPhone and iPad

iRing FX/Controller is a free companion app, which provides a simple interface for playing electronic music on the fly. Once the app installed, open it up, register your iRing, and start making music.

The Ring system is available for $24.99 and can be ordered via the IK Multimedia website.

Accessories, News/Rumors

Divoom Airbeat-10 compact wireless Bluetooth speaker

Are you looking for a Bluetooth speaker, which is small enough to share your bag with keys and purse? Then, The Airbeat-10 from Divoom is a good solution for you.

The Airbeat-10 is another stunning sound device with wireless connectivity via Bluetooth. That means, that you can easily connect this audio device with your Bluetooth enabled devices and wired devices.

The Airbeat-10 is splash-proof, which means it can be used in the shower or on the beach. It has an integrated microphone that allows a hands-free communication session.

Also, it is a portable Bluetooth speaker so you can carry it in your bag or hand. The Airbeat-10 comes packaged with bike mounts, so you can attach Divoom speaker anywhere you want. The suction cup that comes with the Airbeat-10 as well makes it possible to stick it to just about anywhere. 

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The Airbeat-10 itself is a very compact wireless Bluetooth speaker with a dimensions of 87 x 78 x 45 mm, that has a built-in rechargeable battery of 500 mAh which can be used up to 6 hours in continuation and can be recharged in just 2.5 hours via USB cable. The Bluetooth version 3.0 used in the speaker provides connection up to10 meters.

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The Divoom Airbeat-10 is available in several color versions, including “Passion Red, Sky Blue, Pearl White and Smart Black”and priced at $30.