Posts Tagged ‘FaceTime’

iCPooch Is A Remote Treat Dispenser & Pet Facetime Terminal For Absent Dog Owners


Last summer we covered Petzila’s answer to keeping a pet pooch happy when you’re not at home: a remote treat dispenser called PetziConnect which also let absent dog owners view and talk to their pooch while delivering treats from afar. Fast forward a few months and prepare to greet iCPooch: another gizmo aiming for the not-so-stay-at-home dog owner, but one which takes the remote petting to the next obvious level: doggy facetime.

iCPooch, currently seeking $ 20,000 on Kickstarter to go from prototype to production, provides a plastic housing for repurposing an Android/iOS smartphone or tablet as a video terminal through which you can see and be seen by your dog when you’re not at home.

So, to be clear, you’re going to have to provide the most expensive chunk of hardware required to power this device yourself, fitting it between iCPooch’s adjustable brackets. Although, your old smartphone that’s languishing unused in a drawer is probably going to be perfectly up to the task of treat-talking Fido.

As with PetziConnect, iCPooch holds pet treats (although it’s specifically designed for larger dog biscuits) that the owner can dispense remotely via the ‘drop cookie’ button in the corresponding app.

The differentiator is that because you’re using a smartphone/tablet, the app can also support placing a videocall (via Skype and piggybacking on your home Wi-Fi network) so you can view your dog while you send a treat, and — crucially — be seen by them. That’s one up on PetziConnect which included a camera and microphone so the owner could see and talk to the dog, but no screen to be seen.

Whether your dog will care as much for seeing your remote visage as receiving the tasty treats that materialise in iCPooch’s tray remains to be seen — and judging by the Kickstarter video, the dog’s Pavlovian attachment is likely to quickly transfer to the tray portion of the device, i.e. the place where the treat appears. But at least you get to pretend they’re really happy to see you.

iCPooch app

Also remaining to be seen: whether the remote sight and sound of a beloved owner, coupled with  the tasty scent of dog biscuits wafting from a box on the floor, drives Fido into such a frenzy of excitement that he systematically deconstructs iCPooch, returning it to the constituent parts from whence it came.

iCPooch was apparently the brainchild of 14-year-old Brooke Martin, who is credited as inventor and spokesman on the Kickstarter project page, with her dad as founder and COO. The idea came to her after the family dog suffered “separation anxiety” as a result of everyone having less time to spend hanging out at home. Ergo she wanted a way to maintain some contact with the dog, when she was out and about.

The family startup is aiming to raise $ 20,000 on Kickstarter by March 4 to get iCPooch to market, with an estimated shipment date of this May. Early backers can bag the device for $ 99. But as noted above, that price-tag does not include the cost of the smartphone or tablet you’ll need to turn iCPooch from dumb plastic to working gadget.

(Petzila’s rival PetziConnect, which incorporates its own HD camera and Wi-Fi connectivity into the treat-dispenser, has not yet shipped but is due to arrive in early 2014. It’s available for pre-order costing $ 170.)

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Apple Working On Intelligent Brightness Control And Automated FaceTime Camera Selection

facetime ive2

Ideally, your smart device of the future anticipates your needs and adjusts itself to suit them without requiring input on your behalf. Two newly published patent applications (spotted by AppleInsider) from Apple describe systems that could help do just that for future iPhones and iPads, via selective screen brightness control and auto camera switching during FaceTime video calls.

The first patent application describes a way for a user to selectively adjust brightness and contrast of different user interface elements independently of one another. Essentially, this could work in practice by doing things like selective lightboxing as you might see on a photo-focused website, foregrounding elements that contain active content and providing enhanced visibility as well as offering some battery savings.

This is something that some apps already offer, giving users control over what elements are darkened or made brighter within their specific software. Apple’s invention would have the advantage of making this a system-level feature, and one that works automatically in some cases, lightening the load on developer resources and making it so that users can reasonably predict how any given app will use it. This could have big impacts not only in general usability, but for specific accessibility advantage as well.

The other patent application new today describes a way in which Apple devices might be able to switch automatically between front and rear-facing cameras on the fly, based on cues from the user and what’s being captured by each camera lens. This would require devices to capture both streams at one time, but Apple says in the patent that advances in mobile processor tech have recently begun to make that possible without too much excess demand on system resources.

In practice, such a system would be able to work with live calls via services like FaceTime, so that when a participant says something like “Look what Bruno’s doing” and the rear-facing camera detects a dog-like shape in frame, it switches automatically to broadcasting that feed to the receiving party. This could also work for locally-recorded video, the patent application says, doing things like switching between front and back cameras depending on if it detects the person doing the filming is talking or not.

Both of these are the type of next-gen tech projects that likely won’t make it into hardware for the immediately incoming generation, but they’re logical enough additions to existing features that we could well see them in a couple of years’ time.

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Apple trademarks new FaceTime logo, settles on green

Apple trademarks new FaceTime logo, settles on green

There’s certainly been a lot of brouhaha surrounding the new design language Apple introduced for iOS 7 at WWDC. Some (ourselves included) feel it’s modern and fresh while others loathe the brighter palette and simpler, flatter icons. A lot can change between now and the launch of iOS 7 this fall, but if Apple’s recent trademark filing is any indication, FaceTime‘s new logo / icon — which consists of a stylized white video camera inside a rounded-off green square — fits squarely (ahem) within the aesthetic we saw on stage in San Francisco. Of course, companies often trademark logos, so we can’t really say this comes as much of a surprise, either. If you’re curious where Jony Ive might have found his inspiration for the pastel colors and thin lines showcased in iOS 7’s iconography, check out Otl Aicher’s design work for the 1972 Olympics in the “more coverage” link after the break.

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Source: Patently Apple

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Advocacy groups notify AT&T of net neutrality complaint with the FCC over FaceTime restrictions

FaceTime over cellular

Public advocacy groups aren’t all that thrilled with AT&T’s justifications for limiting FaceTime access over 3G and 4G to those who spring for its costlier Mobile Share plans. Free Press, Public Expertise and the Open Innovation Institute have served official notice to AT&T that they prepare to file a net neutrality issue with the FCC within 10 days. It’s not challenging to comprehend why, offered the groups’ existing pro-neutrality stances: the Free Press’ policy lead Matt Wood argues that the carrier is unfairly pushing iOS users into plans they do not need, a particularly sore point for iPad-only clients that have no AT&T phones to share. We have actually reached out to AT&T for remark, although we’re not anticipating a change from its position that enabling application usage over WiFi makes its rules fine. As for the FCC? It’s mum on the existing situation. A literal reading of its net neutrality rules, nevertheless, doesn’t consist of a WiFi exemption and could not favor AT&T when Skype video is allowed and Verizon has no issues with unrestricted access.

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AT&T of net neutrality issue with the FCC over FaceTime limitations initially appeared on Engadget on Tue, 18 Sep 2012 19:28:00 EDT. Please see our terms for usage of feeds. Permalink|GigaOM|Email this|Comments

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AT&T’s hostile FaceTime restrictions likely don’t violate FCC rules

AT&T logo (STOCK)

Washington DC-based interest group Public Understanding released a short press release this evening stating its displeasure with AT&T’s decision to restrict FaceTime over cellular– a new feature in iOS 6– to subscribers selecting its new Mobile Share plans, arguing that the company is “violating the FCC’s Open Internet regulations.” Right here’s the full statement from senior personnel attorney John Bergmayer:

By blocking FaceTime for many of its clients, AT&T is violating the FCC’s Open Net guidelines. These rules state that mobile providers shall not ‘prevent applications that contend with the supplier’s voice or video recording telephone services.’ Although carriers are allowed to engage in ‘reasonable network management,’ there is no technical explanation why one …

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AT&T CEO responds to paid 3G FaceTime rumor, says it’s ‘too early’ to talk pricing

AT&T responds to paid 3G FaceTime rumor, refuses to commit either way

AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson has actually replied to reports that Ma Bell organizes to bring an additional levy upon those planning to use FaceTime over cellular. Speaking at the Fortune Brainstorm conference, he’s quoted as stating that he might “heard the exact same rumor,” but that it was “too very early to talk about pricing.” At present, he states his main focus is to deal with Apple on guaranteeing the video presentation calling modern technology works effortlessly across his business’s information network, with iOS 6 due to arrive later on this year.

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“Leaked” iPhone 5 Front Casing Shows Centered FaceTime Camera

Screen shot 2012-07-16 at 9.58.57 AM

Another day, an additional crack.

On Friday we saw exactly what was stated to be an iPhone 5 prototype unit, and today a totally different variation of the “ iPhone 5 ″ casing has found its way on to the interwebs. Strangely enough, this most current puncture looks an awful great deal like images of iPhone 5 parts released by 9to5mac.

Of course, it ’ s possible that none of these cracks are the real thing, but it sure does assist pass the time until Apple hops on phase in October. The latest crack comes by way of a Chinese site called Apple. pro who relatively located the images on Photobucket. No one working at Apple might post an image of the iPhone 5 on Photobucket, though that ’ s not to say that somebody in the supply chain didn ’ t snap an image or two.

Either method, I ’ m approaching this leak as I have all the others– with a gigantic salt shaker.

There are two “ leaked ” situations right here: one white and one black. They show that the front-facing video camera for video recording chat has actually been focused above the speaker grill. This matches up splendidly with images shown by 9to5mac, particularly since this image even shows a taller screen with the exact same exact width and bezels as the iPhone 4/4S.

We ’ ve heard recently that the next-gen iPhone will certainly have a light weight aluminum (or steel) back panel, matching up more uniformly with the iPad and additional Apple items. TechCrunch has even specifically confirmed that the normal 30-pin dock will be replaced with a 19-pin mini connector. And lest we forget, a 4.08-inch display is also anticipated. Macotokara reports that development on the iPhone 5 has actually already begun, so we must see this bad boy no later than October, if not earlier.

Right here is a larger version of this latest leak:

And right here ’ s that 9to5mac pic that appears to line up:

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WTF: Doctor Performs iPhone ‘Facetime Facelifts’


A plastic surgeon in Washington DC has started performing a procedure dubbed the “Facetime Facelift” because people don’t like the way their double chins look when using the iPhone’s Facetime chat. Jesus, THEN JUST CALL OR TEXT.

“Patients come in with their iPhones and show me how they look on [Apple’s video calling application] FaceTime,” says Dr. Sigal. “The angle at which the phone is held, with the caller looking downward into the camera, really captures any heaviness, fullness and sagging of the face and neck. People say ‘I never knew I looked like that! I need to do something!’ I’ve started calling it the ‘FaceTime Facelift’ effect. And we’ve developed procedures to specifically address it.”

Granted you could just not hold the phone below your face, but that would take too much arm muscle. WTF — Facetime isn’t a f***ing fashion photoshoot, people. I seriously doubt your mom cares what your neck looks like. Besides, Facetime isn’t about looking good, it’s about jamming down your pants to show your girlfriend your privates from work. “So true.” So true says the guy with pubes sticking out of his phone case!

Hit the jump for a brief video the doctor explaining the procedure.

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iOS 4.3.2 download Due Next week – Fixes Verizon iPad 2 and FaceTime issues

BGR’s streak with leaked build of iOS continues! After getting first hands on with 4.3.1, Jonathan S. Geller has installed unreleased iOS 4.3.2 build on his iPhone 4. One of our Apple sources has just let us know that Apple’s iOS 4.3.2, due within the next week or so, will fix the issues we’ve been hearing […]

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