Google opens Glass Mirror API

Posted by:
Date: Thursday, December 5th, 2013, 08:38
Category: Accessory, Consumer Electronics, Developer, Gadget, Google, News, Opinion, privacy, security, Wearables

google_glass_grey-580-90Last week, Google finally made the Glass API for Google Glass open to all developers. Previously, the API was only available to developers that actually shelled out the $1500 to own the Google Glass hardware and were added to a whitelist of approved owners. Now Google doesn’t care if you have the software or not. TechCrunch breaks down the methods for developers to write software for Google Glass.

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Black Friday sales for Mac users

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Date: Friday, November 29th, 2013, 18:16
Category: Accessory, Apple, battery, Cases, Consumer Electronics, Gadget, iMac, iPad, iPad Air, iPad mini, iPod, iPod Touch, Mac Pro, MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, Peripheral, retail, Websites

Qustodio-Blog-Black-friday-Tech-gift-what-you-need-to-know-before-buyingHopefully the tryptophan has worn off and you are ready to rush madly to your computer and start fighting for those Black Friday sales! I just thought I’d put up a few of the online stores and items that are on sale to get you started. Many of these sales didn’t post their sales until today.

Of course there is Apple’s one day event which is in full swing until 11:59 pm PST tonight.

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PrimeSense purchase confirmed

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Date: Monday, November 25th, 2013, 11:40
Category: Accessory, Apple, News, Television

primesenselogoOn Sunday, Apple officially announced its acquisition of 3D sensor developer PrimeSense. As we reported earlier, Apple has been in talks with PrimeSense since the summer in a bid to grab the company. PrimeSense was the developer of the 3D tracking technology used in Microsoft’s original Kinect device that shipped with the Xbox 360. Apple spokeswoman Kristin Huguet confirmed the PrimeSense deal to AllThingsD, with Apple’s standard footnote;

“Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time, and we generally do not discuss our purpose or plans.”

AllThingsD followed up with a spokeswoman for PrimeSense who said;

“We can confirm the deal with Apple. Further than that, we cannot comment at this stage.”

Sources say that the purchase price for PrimeSense was in the neighborhood of $360 million. Speculation is that Apple may use the technology in the long rumored Apple branded television, or perhaps as an accessory to the AppleTV.

Review: Budget Lightning cables from iSmooth (Updated)

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Date: Wednesday, November 20th, 2013, 11:02
Category: Accessory, Consumer Electronics, Hardware, Opinion, Review

LIGHTNING2MCABLEMAIN_mediumBefore I upgraded from my iPhone 4S to the new 5S, I wanted to be prepared. Unlike previous iPhone upgrades, I had to deal with the switch from the 30-pin to the Lightning connector which was introduced with the iPhone 5. Over the years I had collected a stash of chargers and cables as well as accessories, such as the Mophie Juicepack, which I had grown dependent on, and now had to replace. Not an inexpensive endeavor, especially with Apple’s premium price for replacement Lightning cables ($19-$29). Not expecting to find anything, at least not of great quality, I hit Amazon.com to see if there were some cheaper alternatives. After some exhaustive reading of reviews, I settled on cables made by iSmooth.

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Pebble app updated for iOS with better notification support

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Date: Tuesday, November 12th, 2013, 08:07
Category: Accessory, App Store, Apps, iOS, iPhone, Software, Wearables

Pebble-130The latest version of the iOS Pebble app finally hit the AppStore Monday, implementing changes that were announced last week in an online announcement by Pebble. The Pebble Smartwatch app hit version 1.3.0 and adds support for additional app notifications in iOS 7. Previously, notifications were limited to mainly email, text messages, and Caller ID. Now, the device can display notifications from just about any app including Twitter, FaceBook, Instagram, etc. The update also improves on a number of features, such as Caller ID, which would typically just show the caller’s number even though it was supposed to grab names from your Contacts. Watch apps that pull information from the web to display information such as weather, stock information, and the like, are supposed to work better as well. And of course, several bugs were squashed such as the watch continuing to vibrate even when you picked up on the call it was notifying you about. Determining which apps send notifications to your watch is managed by iOS 7′s Notification Center. The new app will show you instructions on how to do this once you’ve updated the watch’s firmware. These features are supported in iOS 7 for the iPhone 4S and higher.

Pebble announces SDK 2.0 and better iOS notifications

Posted by:
Date: Friday, November 8th, 2013, 08:28
Category: Accessory, Announcement, Consumer Electronics, Gadget

Pebble_notificationsWednesday morning, via streaming video, Pebble’s CEO Eric Migicovsky opened up the presentation with an overview of the upcoming additions to the Pebble smart-watch’s capabilities which will be unlocked with the release of the Pebble SDK (Software Development Kit) version 2.0. You can read the main points from his introduction on the Pebble Blog, which also includes numbers on Pebble sales as well as active app developers. The majority of the remaining announcement was aimed purely at developers, and talked extensively about the programming details of the new SDK. If you missed it, you can watch a video recording of the entire announcement on Pebble’s channel over at YouTube.

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Apple to expand USB takeback program to UK, other countries

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Date: Monday, August 12th, 2013, 14:30
Category: Accessory, iPad, iPod Touch, News, retail, Rumor

replacement_adapter

The Apple USB power adapter takeback program has expanded.

Per MacNN and 9to5Mac, Apple is extending the number of eligible countries in its USB adapter takeback program. The program began in China August 9th, and is coming to the US on August 16th. Now also joining on the 16th will be Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Japan, and the UK.

The deadline for the program in the new countries is October 18th, as in the US. Participants can get a new USB adapter at a discounted price, so long as they bring in an old third-party adapter plus an iPhone, iPod, or iPad to validate a serial number. The lower price is $14 in Canada, €10 in France and Germany, ¥1,000 in Japan, and £8 in the UK.

9to5Mac claims that each retail Apple Store will have at least one iOS Genius on hand to conduct trade-ins for the old adapters. Stores are also, reportedly, already receiving related training materials.

Stay tuned for additional details as they become available.

Apple to launch “Takeback Program” on August 16th, seeks to replace faulty knockoff USB power adapters with genuine article

Posted by:
Date: Tuesday, August 6th, 2013, 07:34
Category: Accessory, iPad, iPhone, iPod, News

replacement_adapter

You should probably stick with the real McCoy.

Per 9to5Mac and Mac|Life, following incidents such as the apparent electrocution of a Chinese woman by a faulty knockoff iPhone charger, Apple is ramping up a program in which customers can bring in their old USB power adapters and receive new, Apple-designed ones for a lower price via a “Takeback Program.”

To take advantage of the offer, simply bring in your old power adapter for your iPhone, iPad, or iPod after August 16 (either third party or designed by Apple) to your local Apple Store or authorized retailer, and the staff will dispose of it for you “in an environmentally friendly way.” If you did so, you can then purchase a new one for just US$10, although Apple’s announcement also states that this offer will only be available until October 18.

The new support page reads as follows:
“Recent reports have suggested that some counterfeit and third party adapters may not be designed properly and could result in safety issues. While not all third party adapters have an issue, we are announcing a USB Power Adapter Takeback Program to enable customers to acquire properly designed adapters.

Customer safety is a top priority at Apple. That’s why all of our products — including USB power adapters for iPhone, iPad, and iPod — undergo rigorous testing for safety and reliability and are designed to meet government safety standards around the world.”

Stay tuned for additional details as they become available.

Belkin releases long-anticipated Thunderbolt Express Dock accessory

Posted by:
Date: Tuesday, April 30th, 2013, 07:00
Category: Accessory, Hardware, News

It took over a year following its announcement to get here, but it’s finally on the market.

Per AppleInsider, the Belkin Thunderbolt Express Dock, first announced in January of 2012, is now available for purchase for US$299, more than a year after the Mac accessory was unveiled.

The docking station allows users to have instant access to 8 ports by connecting just one high-speed Lightning cable to their Mac. The Belkin Thunderbolt Express Dock includes:
- One Gigabit Ethernet port

- One Firewire 800 port

- One Thunderbolt port for daisy-chaining up to five additional Thunderbolt devices

- One 3.5 millimeter headphone output jack

- One 3.5 millimeter audio input jack

- Three USB 3.0 ports with max data transfer of 2.5Gbps

- Cable management channel


belkin-130430-2

The Belkin Thunderbolt Express Dock is compatible with all recent Macs equipped with Thunderbolt ports, including the MacBook Air and MacBook Pro. Belkin boasts that the high speed of Thunderbolt allows users to download a high-definition feature film in 30 seconds, or sync a year’s worth of continuous music in 10 minutes.

The Thunderbolt Express Dock was first announced by Belkin at the Consumer Electronics Show in early 2012. At the time, the company said the accessory would become available last September, but that launch date was missed.

Since the original unveiling, the hardware has been upgraded to include three USB 3.0 ports. The originally announced hardware featured USB 2.0 ports running at slower speeds.

But the shipping accessory has also lost an HDMI out port, which was also initially planned to be included with the docking station.

If you’ve ordered a Thunderbolt Express Dock and have any feedback to offer, please let us know in the comments.

Appearance: PPUG Saturday in Philadelphia (Withings WS-50 preview)

Posted by:
Date: Friday, March 29th, 2013, 09:28
Category: Accessory, PPUG, User Group, Wearables

Withings WS-50 Wi-Fi scale

I’ll be presenting at the Philadelphia PowerBook User Group (PPUG) on Saturday, March 30, 2013 from 12 noon to 3 p.m. PPUG is the first dedicated PowerBook User Group (PPUG) in the United States and was founded in 1999.

We meet at the Manayunk Brewing Company along the beautiful Schuylkill River in Philadelphia, PA and our meetings is open to all. We usually have lunch (or a brew) while we talk mobile computing.

We’ve got a big slate to present.

I’m going to present the latest in wearable fitness computers, including the Jawbone Up band, the BodyMedia FIT LINK and their associated iOS apps. I’m also giving an exclusive demonstration of the Withings WS-50 Smart Body Analyzer. It’s your chance to preview the new Wi-Fi scale that measures weight, body composition, heart rate, and air quality before it starts shipping in mid-April.

Rob Parker will do a roundup of the latest gadgets in the ParkerDigital stable, including the Pebble watch, Nike+ Fuel Band, FitBit One, Mophie Juice Pack Air for iPhone 5 and some iPad mini cases. Apple Distinguished Educator Youngmoo Kim will give a presentation about issues and tricks he’s encountered doing presentations wirelessly using AirPlay. He’ll be presenting using an Apple TV connected to a BenQ 761 projector.

Join us for a great meeting, it’s free and open to you and your guests. Feel free to bring items to sell or swap as well.

Manayunk Brewing Company

4120 Main Street

Philadelphia, PA 19127

215.482.8220