Last week’s review of the YiCamera, a GoPro-like camera backed and sold by Chinese phone maker Xiaomi, brought its fair share of divisive criticism. By my own admission, footage from the sports camera that others had posted looked noticeably better than my own. Obviously, Xiaomi wasn’t very happy about the review, either. In the spirit of fairness, I decided to give it another go. Xiaomi sent me a second unit to test, which I did as best I could under similar conditions.
As the first circular Android Wear watch the Moto 360 certainly impressed in terms of style, but a better successor was always inevitable. It looks like that successor might be here sooner rather than later, as an image of it has apparently been spied. The photo was posted to Weibo by none other than Lenovo’s own CEO Yang Yuanqing, so it seems likely that it’s the real deal.
Apple will open its new Watch wearable for online pre-orders on April 10 and start shipping the watch on April 25 to nine countries including Australia. The device will come in three “collections” dubbed Watch Sport, Watch and the 18-carat yellow or rose gold Watch Edition. Watch Sport will retail for A$499 and $579, will the midrange Watch will sell for $799 to $1629 depending on model.
At Apple’s press event today in San Francisco, Apple CEO Tim Cook revealed that the company’s newest gadget, the Apple Watch, will be hitting some parts of Asia on day one. China, Hong Kong, and Japan are among the nine countries that will get the watches on their global debut: April 24. Other countries will follow, of course, but no specific launch dates were given.
The Apple Watch will ship over 15 million units worldwide in 2015, according to Strategy Analytics. Apple will quickly become the world’s number one smartwatch vendor and capture 55% global market share in the year, said the research firm. Global smartwatch shipments are forecast to reach 28.1 million units in 2015, up 511% from the 4.6 million units shipped in 2014, Strategy Analytics director Cliff Raskind indicated. Most of the smartwatch growth will come from the new Apple Watch, which the firm forecasts to ship 15.4 million units worldwide in 2015, Raskind said.
British airline Virgin Atlantic has begun an eight-week trial of Sony wearable technology within its engineering department for maintenance and repairs. The trial is being conducted at the airline’s busiest airport, London Heathrow. The aim is to ascertain how the technology can be used for “real time communication between the engineering team on the aircraft and in the engineering support areas”.
HTC has unveiled its new flagship smartphone the HTC One M9 along with its first smart sports bracelet the HTC Grip and a VR (virtual reality) device the HTC Vive during a pre-MWC 2015 event. The HTC One M9 is comparable with its predecessor the HTC One M8 in terms of design and hardware specifications, although the CPU and memory parts of the new flagship model have received upgrades.
BARCELONA, March 2 — Chinese telecom equipment maker Huawei yesterday launched its first smartwatch, a round-faced device that works with Android phones, joining a crowded market weeks before the introduction of the highly anticipated Apple Watch. At an event tied to the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, the firm unveiled its Huawei watch line in classic, business and sporty versions, while at the same time across town, Korea’s LG Electronics launched a similar round-faced model.
BARCELONA: Chinese telecom equipment maker Huawei on Sunday launched its first smartwatch, a round-faced device that works with Android phones, joining a crowded market weeks before the introduction of the highly anticipated Apple Watch. At an event tied to the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, the firm unveiled its Huawei watch line in classic, business and sporty versions, while at the same time across town, Korea’s LG Electronics launched a similar round-faced model.
TAIPEI–Taiwan’s Asustek Computer Inc. (華碩) could turn to a second mobile operating system for future smartwatches in order to achieve longer battery life, leaving behind the Android Wear system used on its current ZenWatch, company CEO Jerry Shen (沈振來) said. Shen confirmed however that Asustek will use Google Inc.’s Android Wear in one of its second-generation ZenWatch models before any possible future changes occur.
Although Sony Mobile Communications, LG Electronics, Motorola Mobility and Asustek Computer have launched Android Wear-based smartwatches, Samsung Electronics, HTC and some China-based makers are likely to release comparable models running on their own platforms initially, according to industry sources.
Game development in Southeast Asia is still at a relatively nascent stage, and many studios choose to focus on what’s simple and fast to complete – mobile games for smartphones. Singapore-based studio Dreamrocket, on the other hand, has tried something new with Dragon Laser, a game for smart watches. According to the studio, it’s “easy to pick up, yet challenging to master,” and users are guaranteed to smile every time they break their previous high scores.
A new rumor suggests Apple might have contracted Samsung to be the primary manufacturer for the S1 chip, the processor inside the upcoming Apple Watch. Apple reportedly has acquired 3,000 to 4,000 12-inch wafers every month from Samsung, in an attempt to have sufficient hardware units before the launch in spring, according to ZDNet. Each 12-inch wafer has 700 processors, meaning Apple will be grabbing 2.5 million new processors every month. By the time the Apple Watch launches, Apple should have a healthy supply of available processors.
Asustek Computer has launched its Android Wear-based smartwatch, the ZenWatch in Taiwan, priced at NT$5,990 (US$188). Company CEO Jerry Shen pointed out that monthly production capacity for ZenWatch is about 50,000 units, but it is insuffcient to meet the demand. The company plans to launch the second-generation ZenWatch in July 2015 and has been expanding its capacity in order to satisfy strong demand, Shen noted.
Following a pilot production at the end of 2014, Apple’s new 12-inch MacBook Air is expected to enter mass production in the first quarter of 2015, according to sources from the upstream supply chain. And with the Apple Watch also beginning production at about the same time, Apple’s supply chain players have started accelerating their supplies of related components.
The NSW Police Force will train 1000 officers across 16 locations to use a new fleet of body-worn video cameras in order to improve evidence gathering and encourage officers to be on their best behaviour. The NSWPF expects that at any time around 242 cameras will be worn by officers on duty across the state. It has gone to market to buy a first installment of 267 devices – giving it a 10 percent leeway for repairs – plus the storage, searching and authentication system that will back up an inevitable flood of information the devices will produce.
Sony has unveiled its own eyewear device in an attempt to take on Google Glass and other augmented reality alternatives. The big difference between the two eyewear devices is Sony has made it available for all types of glasses, while Google Glass only works with its own design or that of official third parties. Currently, the name for the eyewear device is SmartEyeglass Attach! Sony has not revealed price or launch dates.
Goodpatch, the Japanese design firm turning heads in Tokyo, has a new tool for designers and developers. Prott, the startup’s new prototyping tool (also available in English) can now be used to design apps for the Apple Watch. They are not the first team to release a prototyping tool. Take a look around and there are a number of alternatives. Prott’s Apple Watch support is notable for being developed in a three-hour design sprint. Also, leading firms like DeNA, IDEO, and Yahoo Japan are all paying customers of the prototyping service.
TAIPEI–Sony Mobile said Tuesday that its new SmartWatch 3 will be available on the local market soon, as the Japanese company is set to introduce for the first time in Taiwan a wearable device that runs on Google Inc.’s Android Wear operating system. The SmartWatch 3 is expected to hit local stores in mid December, carrying a price tag of NT$8,990 (US$290).
Xiaomi already shipped over one million Mi Bands since the device went on sale on August 18 to November 28, according to the fitness tracker’s official Weibo account. At its peak, it sold 103,000 in a single day. To put that into perspective, only about 3.3 million fitness bands and activity trackers were sold between April 2013 and March 2014 in the US, according to the NPD group (h/t Recode).