Posts Tagged ‘ambitions’
After reading about WeatherSignal, a new project from London startup OpenSignal which makes use of the latest sensors in smartphones such as the Samsung Galaxy S4 to crowdsource weather information, I was reminded that I recently caught wind of Shaka, an Estonian startup that has built a wind meter accessory for iOS.
Due to start shipping next month, the battery-free Shaka Wind Meter plugs into an iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad’s headphone socket, and combined with the existing onboard sensors of Apple’s hardware and the startup’s own app/service, measures, records and displays wind-specific weather data such as current and average wind speed, maximum wind gust, ambient temperature, and wind direction — all mapped to a location via GPS.
The device’s inspiration and intended use-case was to enable people who take part in wind-related sports, such as windsurfers and kitesurfers, to find good wind conditions. “Forecasts are often inaccurate and the coverage with stationary and connected stations is not good enough,” says Shaka co-founder Raigo Raamat. “We wanted to simplify the process of sharing good wind conditions inside the community.”
But when he and his two other co-founders — Jens Kasemets and Mihkel Güsson — embarked on the project as far back as 2011 they soon realised “many more communities” could benefit from a device that enabled a smartphone or tablet to be transformed into a “connected weather station” for either private use or for contributing to and accessing real-time crowdsourced weather data. These range from academia, agriculture, emergency services, to golfers and motor sports. “The problem for all these use cases differ, but all need local weather measurements as input,” says Raamat.
To that end, Shaka has gustier ambitions beyond just a wind meter. Longer term, the startup and graduate of the harware-focused accelerator HAXLR8R (which also provided seed funding), plans to build what Raamat’s calling a platform for the world’s smallest weather station. “We’ll add barometric pressure and humidity sensors to achieve that and also support Android devices,” he says. The startup’s ultimate target is expensive and non-connected legacy handheld weather stations.
Today the company is monetizing on the hardware only — the accompanying app is free — but in the future it will offer additional paid-for services, along with opening up the platform to partners who want to develop apps on top of Shaka that target various weather-related communities.
While we cannot promote everybody, SimCity‘s metropolitan building triggers fond memories for more than one of us– mainly the small delights of developing our initial arcologies or getting statuaries in our honor. An opportunity to feed our nostalgia (and megalomania) is coming quickly with the introduction of EA’s beta for the SimCity reboot. Windows individuals who sign up prior to January 20th will get one hour’s well worth of game time to make use of between January 25th and 28th, along with an opportunity to provide feedback on bugs and play balancing. It’s a nearly cruel tease when we know we’ll have to wait till the last version’s March 5th launch to play more, or to use a Mac, but we’ll take the beta offer when many of us haven’t seen a ‘pure’ SimCity game for a years.
[ Thanks, David ]
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Archos makes regular stops at the FCC. We recognize this. When it passes an Arnova-badged componentcalled the GBook through the United States agency, however, that piques our interest. The name immediately suggests a reading-friendly Android tablet in the vein of the Kindle Fire or Nook Tablet, but there’s nothing in the method of images and details to make a definitive judgment call. The hand-friendly little design and the 802.11 n WiFi inside just fuel those suspicions, nevertheless. We do not see ideas in the screening as to when the Arnova GBook might reach shops; that stated, the looming back-to-school and holiday periods may have some sway in getting the gadget to bookworms quicker instead of later on.
Filed under: Tablet PCsArchos Arnova GBook
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Last week’s Area launch from Microsoft had not been the first time the company exposed its interest in tablet Personal computers. Apart from Statement Gates’ Windows XP Tablet Edition in 2002, Microsoft additionally threw its weight behind a HP Slate venture ahead of Apple’s iPad launch. Revealed at CES 2010, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer guaranteed Windows 7-based tablets by the end of 2010, however HP’s Slate 500 failed to deliver. Explained as warm, thick, and an inadequate mix of hardware and software program, one previous Microsoft manager has actually revealed to The New York Times that HP’s effort was “completely wrecked.”
HP apparently “fumed at Microsoft” for not enhancing the Windows 7 touch user interface, or its cumbersome on-screen keyboard that was far from touch friendly. Microsoft …
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We knew that Panasonic’s mobile division was summoning its strength for a return to the Old World, and finally we have some detail: it’s aiming to bring an “ultra-slim D-shaped” Android smartphone with a slim bezel, 4.3-inch qHD OLED screen, NFC and some rugged credentials to Europe in March next year. The manufacturer hopes to use Europe as a stepping stone to the US, China and the rest of Asia, aiming to broaden its range of Android devices and sell at a total of nine million of them outside of Japan by the end of March 2016. Read on for the full PR.
If you’ve ever experienced the anxiety of buying an Apple product while worrying that a new model will come out days later, Apple’s competitors feel your pain. Three months ago when the iPad 2 was announced, their existing tablets suddenly seemed chunky compared with the super-thin new iPad.
But this week I reviewed the first tablet that’s actually thinner than the iPad 2: the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1. Never mind that the difference in thinness between these competing tablets is two-tenths of a millimeter. Thinner is thinner.
The Tab 10.1 is also lighter than the iPad 2, though (again) not by much: 1.25 pounds versus 1.33 pounds. Starting Friday, the 16 gigabyte model with Wi-Fi, which I tested, will be available for $ 499 and the 32 gigabyte Wi-Fi model for $ 599—the same prices as Apple’s comparable iPad 2s.
The Galaxy Tab 10.1 is a svelte 8.6 millimeters thick and 1.25 pounds.
So how do the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 and iPad 2 really differ?
There are hundreds of thousands more apps available for the iPad 2’s iOS operating system. The Galaxy Tab’s front- and rear-facing cameras capture better-quality photos than the iPad 2. The Galaxy Tab’s 10.1-inch screen is formatted for widescreen viewing and is slightly longer than the iPad 2’s 9.7-inch screen.
But the most notable difference between these two tablets is in battery life: In my test with Wi-Fi on, screen brightness at about 75 percent and a continuous loop of video playing, the Galaxy Tab 10.1 lasted for just 5 hours and 38 minutes. This is only a bit more than half as long as the iPad 2, which lasted for 10 hours and nine minutes in the same test. (Both the Tab and iPad 2 batteries would last longer in more normal-use scenarios.)
I carried the Galaxy Tab 10.1 with me for everyday use, and it was light enough that I didn’t have to think twice about whether or not to bring it with me. It comes in white or black, though this color is only noticeable on the Tab’s back panel since its screen bezel is black regardless of which color you choose. (The white iPad has a matching screen bezel.) The plastic material on the back of the Galaxy Tab 10.1 feels a bit cheap compared with the brushed aluminum in Apple’s iPad, but its tapered edges give it a sexy look and feel.
The Galaxy Tab 10.1′s bright, high-definition touch screen was responsive to gestures and served as a beautiful showcase for HD videos. And Honeycomb, Google’s Android 3.1 operating system for tablets, has a cleaner user interface than other Android operating systems.
Looking for Charlie Rose
Nice as it looks, the Galaxy Tab 10.1 is lacking some built-in features. Unlike the iPad, this tablet supports Flash, Adobe’s popular format for playing videos in the Web browser. But out of the box, it won’t play Flash videos unless people first download a free Adobe Flash Player app from the Android Market. I only discovered this by unsuccessfully attempting to play videos on CharlieRose.com. The videos played without a problem after I downloaded the Flash app, but some people may not know to do this.
A Samsung spokesman said a future software update will include Adobe Flash Player, but that won’t be pushed to devices until later this summer.
Likewise, Samsung Media Hub, a digital store where users can buy next-day TV shows and rent or buy movies, isn’t yet available on the Tab 10.1. Nor is TouchWiz, Samsung’s special layer of software that will add personal touches to the user interface like social-network feeds, saved websites and digital photos. Both Media Hub and TouchWiz will come to the Galaxy Tab 10.1 this summer via software updates.
The new Apple Inc. iPad 2
A Google spokeswoman wouldn’t say how many tablet-specific apps are available for the Honeycomb operating system that the Galaxy Tab 10.1 runs, but the overall Android Market offers over 200,000 apps. Apple’s iPad runs over 425,000 apps from the Apple App Store, some 90,000 of which are designed especially for the iPad.
I searched the Android Market for apps and downloaded two versions of Angry Birds onto my Galaxy Tab 10.1. I installed several social-networking apps including Pulse, Twitter, TweetDeck and Facebook. I set up my Gmail and three other email accounts. And I installed the Amazon Kindle app, which synced with the current page of the book I’m reading on my iPad. Two speakers on either side of the Galaxy Tab’s screen provided quality sound during games and movies.
The Galaxy Tab 10.1′s front- and rear-facing cameras captured good-looking photos. I used the rear-facing camera to snap still shots of friends, and turned on its automatic flash for darker environments. Apple won’t disclose the megapixels of the iPad 2′s cameras, but Samsung’s Tab 10.1 specs say its front- and rear-facing cameras offer 2 and 3 megapixels, respectively. The rear-facing camera also has auto-focus and a flash.
The Galaxy Tab 10.1 will be available in models with Verizon Wireless’s 4G service next month. The prices for the 16- and 32-gigabyte versions will be $ 529 and $ 629, respectively. Three models of the iPad 2 with carrier service are already available from Verizon Wireless and AT&T for $ 629 (16 gigabytes), $ 729 (32 gigabytes) and $ 829 (64 gigabytes).
If you’re looking for a viable alternative to Apple’s iPad, the Galaxy Tab 10.1 is great looking and its software feels responsive and fast. But its selection of fewer apps and weaker battery life put it at a disadvantage to the iPad 2, especially since the two tablets cost the same.
Watch a video with Katherine Boehret on the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 at WSJ.com/PersonalTech. Write to her at email@example.com.
It sure is hard to differentiate yourself in the highly competitive world of ever-shrinking USB storage. To avoid this trend of disregard, Verbatim has sent its latest offering off to paper management school and the results are now apparent for us to see. The new Clip-it comes with an added incision in the middle of its lilliputian body that allows it to act as a paperclip or maybe even a handsome accessory to your geek chique outfit. Verbatim makes sure to tell us (about eleventy times) that the Clip-it has scooped up a red dot Design Award for its ingenuity, and prices the thing at eminently affordable €8.99 (2GB) and €11.49 (4GB) levels. Those correspond to $ 12 and $ 15.34, respectively, meaning you could have the whole set of seven colors for less than what you’d have to spend on just one iWatch.
Continue reading Verbatim’s Clip-it is a USB drive with paperclip ambitions