Author Archives: Chris Davies

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

Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 teased with Kryo cores

Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 teased with Kryo cores

The first phones running Qualcomm's Snapdragon 810, like the HTC One M9 announced yesterday, may only just be arriving, but the chip firm couldn't help but tease its next-gen silicon. The Snapdragon 820 isn't expected to begin sampling until the second half of 2015, but Qualcomm decided that there was no better place than Mobile World Congress to slip out a few early details about what might be powering your smartphone upgrade in 2016.

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Qualcomm’s fingerprint tech turns touchscreens Touch ID

Qualcomm’s fingerprint tech turns touchscreens Touch ID

Unlocking a phone with a fingertip on your phone's home button is certainly convenient, but Qualcomm's latest biometric sensor see your fingerprint through your display. The company has announced Snapdragon Sense ID 3D Fingerprint Technology at MWC 2015, a long name for what's shaping up to be a potentially big improvement in security ergonomics. Rather than a capacitive sensor, as used in Apple's Touch ID and on the new Samsung Galaxy S6, Qualcomm's approach uses ultrasonics so that it can sense through a variety of materials.

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SlashGear 101: What is Samsung Pay?

SlashGear 101: What is Samsung Pay?

You’ve heard of Apple Pay, you’ve heard of Google Wallet, but now there’s Samsung Pay, the South Korean company’s take on mobile payments. Debuting as a feature update on the new Samsung Galaxy S 6 and Galaxy S 6 edge later in 2015, Samsung Pay’s claim to greatness is that not only does it use NFC for transactions, as per Apple Pay, but that it can emulate a traditional card for use with older cash registers. Confused? Don’t fret; we’ve got you covered after the cut.

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Huawei’s TalkBand N1 wants desperately to be fashionable

Huawei’s TalkBand N1 wants desperately to be fashionable

Huawei has a new set of Bluetooth headphones that also serve as a fitness tracker, and it’s hoping you’ll like it so much that you’ll wear it as a necklace even when you’re not working out. The Huawei TalkBand N1 isn’t the first paid of Bluetooth headphones we’ve ever seen, but they’re certainly some of the smallest: just 18g despite including active noise cancelation and a nifty magnetic clasp which holds the earbuds together around your neck when they’re not in your ears.

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Huawei TalkBand B2 hands-on: Double-duty wearable

Huawei TalkBand B2 hands-on: Double-duty wearable

Last year, Huawei tried to convince us that we needed a combination Bluetooth headset and activity tracker; for MWC 2015, it’s the turn of its glamorous sibling, the Huawei TalkBand B2. Hewn from metal and leather rather than the plastic of its B1 predecessor, and targeting wearers who might be looking to replace a traditional watch rather than fitness band, the TalkBand B2 is fronted with a 0.73-inch AMOLED display, while inside there’s a self-learning algorithm that claims to cut down on fake readings.

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HP Spectre x360 hands-on: When PC makers get OCD

HP Spectre x360 hands-on: When PC makers get OCD

The HP Spectre x360 is, if you're brave enough to play Devil’s Advocate, the Windows notebook you create when you channel Apple levels of obsessive-compulsion. Latest in HP’s high-end ultraportable family, the new Spectre isn’t just a capable aluminum laptop but a turning point in involvement between an OEM and Microsoft: a never-before-seen investment in time, energy, and Very Clever People. In fact, you could well argue that the Spectre x360 is the Surface Laptop that Microsoft refuses to make. I caught up with both companies to get my hands on their collaborative aluminum slab, and find out what makes it really special.

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Huawei Watch teased as luxury Android Wear option

Huawei Watch teased as luxury Android Wear option

The world clearly needs another circular smartwatch, and Huawei is hoping that its unimaginatively-titled Huawei Watch will be the one to end up on your wrist. Expected to make its official debut at Mobile World Congress 2015 on Sunday, but already previewed in a pair of videos, the Android Wear timepiece aims at the classier end of the scale, with a sleek stainless steel casing, minimal ornamentation, and of course that round touchscreen.

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Withings Activité Review – Smart gets Stylish

Withings Activité Review – Smart gets Stylish

Rather than a smartwatch, how about a watch that’s simply smarter? Smartwatches and fitness trackers have long tried to borrow from the traditional horological handbook, but tech usually trumps style; heck, the specter of the Apple Watch may loom over all wearables, but even Cupertino’s wrist-candy needs no second glance to be mistaken for something different from a regular watch. Could salvation come from France by way of Switzerland, and the Withings Activité? With a price tag higher even than Apple’s, and a spec list conspicuously shorter, the Activité needs more than just its coveted “Swiss Made” branding, but after two months of it on my wrist, I've realized it has some unique charms of its own.

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Daytona Rising: Reinventing a NASCAR icon

Daytona Rising: Reinventing a NASCAR icon

NASCAR. That’s just over-powered cars going in a circle for hours, right? As the Daytona 500 reaches its horsepower-heavy crescendo today, it’s the iconic racetrack, the Daytona International Speedway, which is sharing a little more of the spotlight than usual. Coaxing fans out from their living rooms and the surfeit of entertainment options there isn’t a unique problem in sports, but it’s one that sponsor-dependent NASCAR faces more than most. The answer is Daytona Rising, an ambitious program designed not only to renovate the grandstand but to turn the historic track into what Joie Chitwood, President of the Speedway, describes as “the first and only motorsports stadium.” I headed out to Florida to find out how new tech is bringing the race experience up to speed.

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OneNote for iPad can now handle your handwriting

OneNote for iPad can now handle your handwriting

Apple may have been cautious in embracing the stylus, but that doesn't mean iPad apps have held back, with Microsoft adding handwriting support to OneNote today. The updated note-taking app adds what Microsoft claims is one of the most commonly-requested features from users themselves, the ability to write and sketch directly into notes, just as you might with a Surface Pro 3. Meanwhile, there's also new optical character recognition (OCR) support in OneNote, pulling out the text in photos and scans automatically.

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