Author Archives: Chris Davies

Writing for R3 Media since 2006, Chris Davies is currently executive editor for SlashGear and Android Community. Based in London, UK, he's responsible for SlashGear's editorial decisions and covers all forms of consumer technology. You can follow him on Twitter.

Google Maps next for Material Design revamp

Google Maps next for Material Design revamp

Google has been on a roll recently, updating its core app suite with Material Design style, and next in line is Google Maps. Both the Android and the iPhone versions of the popular navigation app are getting a revamp, with cleaner graphics, more intuitive controls, and a look that meshes with the Android 5.0 Lollipop aesthetic. Although the most obvious changes are to the design, though, that's not to say there aren't new features tucked in there as well, including closer integration with third-party services like OpenTable and Uber.

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Tesla plans simpler Model S range to tackle EV bottleneck

Tesla plans simpler Model S range to tackle EV bottleneck

Tesla plans to cut down on the number of options and variations it offers with the Model S in an attempt to trim complexity and cut down on production delays, as the company announces revenues up 55-percent year-on-year for the most recent quarter. Quarterly deliveries for Q3 2014 were actually at their highest ever, at 7,785 cars, with Tesla making as many as 907 deliveries in a single day. However, the electric car firm was again hamstrung by production bottlenecks, unable to meet demand.

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Netgear Arlo cuts all cords for weatherproof security cameras

Netgear Arlo cuts all cords for weatherproof security cameras

Netgear has launched a new wireless security camera, Arlo, promising complete liberation from wires thanks to WiFi and some long-lasting batteries. Streaming 720p video to iOS and Android apps, and delivering low-light vision for nighttime use, the Arlo cameras are weatherproof for outdoor use. At first glance, then, they seem like the ideal alternative to a Dropcam for the wire-averse; however, there are some compromises to be made if you want to cut your cords completely.

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Congrats, Google Glass researchers, obviousness successfully stated

Congrats, Google Glass researchers, obviousness successfully stated

Of all the faults, goofy aesthetics, and generally questionable decisions around Google Glass, the fact that wearing it on your face means you might not be able to see quite as clearly seems a pretty commonsense issue. Still, a team at the University of California, San Francisco opted to look at just that, trying to figure out whether a head-mounted display could in fact present a significant risk to peripheral vision. It'll come as little surprise to find that having a chunk of electronics poised over your right eye does indeed block off some of your visual field.

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Orbital to rent rockets to keep ISS resupply going

Orbital to rent rockets to keep ISS resupply going

Astronauts on the International Space Station won't go hungry, despite the Antares resupply rocket exploding last week, with Orbital Sciences planning to outsource launches while it brings forward its next-gen rocket plans. The incident shortly after takeoff on Monday last week, which saw Orbital's third resupply mission to the ISS unexpectedly curtailed though thankfully with no loss of life, has forced the company to "accelerate" its upgrade of the medium-class launcher's main production system, it announced today. Still, there should be no extra cost or delay to NASA, Orbital insists.

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This Smart Desk concept is the Dell you actually want

This Smart Desk concept is the Dell you actually want

Dell has cooked up a huge touchscreen "Smart Desk" concept for Dell World this week, its vision of what the digital workspace of the future will look like. Focusing on the sort of tools that digital artists, graphic designers, engineers, analysts, and anyone else wanting to dip their hands into their data, the broad LCD multitouch screen covers the desk like a 21st century blotter, and is paired with a second, equally sizable display, such as Dell's own UltraSharp 27, a 5K display which the company says will ship in December.

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Venue 11 Pro 7000 is Dell’s new Surface Pro 3 double

Venue 11 Pro 7000 is Dell’s new Surface Pro 3 double

Dell has dragged its Venue 11 Pro tablet back into the labs and given it a makeover, slimming down and speeding up the Windows 8.1 slate to better compete with Microsoft's own Surface Pro 3. The new Venue 11 Pro 7000 now looks distinctly similar to the Surface Pro 3, in fact, and Dell has seemingly taken some inspiration from there when it comes to accessories and peripherals, too, with a mobile keyboard and an active stylus both on offer. That's not to say the new Dell isn't interesting in its own right, however.

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Jawbone UP3 hands-on – Smarter sensing, cleverer coaching

Jawbone UP3 hands-on – Smarter sensing, cleverer coaching

If you're going to ask someone to wear a fitness tracker 24/7, it better be good, and Jawbone believes its come up with a killer in the new UP3. It's 30-percent smaller than Jawbone's old flagship, with a new design from Yves Behar, but this is no simple remolding of an UP24, however. Instead, it's the launch vehicle for the company's new multi-sensor platform, stepping beyond the simple accelerometer found in most wearables and adding a new bioimpedance sensor among others for not only movement, sleep, and heart tracking, but the promise of even more in-depth metrics that can be unlocked with a simple firmware update. I stopped by Jawbone to find out why UP3 could put other wearables to shame.

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Jawbone UP MOVE – Body tracking for the mass market

Jawbone UP MOVE – Body tracking for the mass market

Jawbone has clearly taken leave of its senses, if the new UP MOVE is anything to go by. Taking the fitness and sleep tracking that made the UP24 a hit, and then packaging it in a tiny clip-on dongle with six month battery life, the UP MOVE not only promises liberation away from the charger but at a fraction of the UP24's price. $49.99 gets you the sort of wearable tracking abilities that, not long ago, would've cost you three times the amount. I caught up with Jawbone to find out what the big idea is, and why luxury cars might represent the best explanation for the UP MOVE.

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Virgin Galactic backers said wavering after spaceship crash

Virgin Galactic backers said wavering after spaceship crash

Virgin Galactic is pushing ahead with construction of its second SpaceShipTwo craft, following the first's disastrous crash last Friday, though some early ticket holders are already backing out and requesting refunds. The second space ship - which will carry serial number two - is around 65-percent built, Virgin Galactic said today. Meanwhile, outspoken company founder Richard Branson has accused "self-proclaimed experts" of drawing conclusions about the craft's safety when "a lot of whom know nothing about what they talk about," following early statements by the National Transportation Safety Board about initial findings.

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