HTC, so the rumor machine goes, is readying its first smartwatches, at least one of which is said to pipe Google Now directly to the wrist. If you're going to build a smartwatch, and you're anywhere close to being committed to Android, I'd argue Google Now is a pretty solid place to start. It certainly satisfies one of the key metrics I tend to judge wearables by: it "gets" context.
Volvo has announced that it will be on hand at MWC 2014 next week to show off its Roam Delivery service. Volvo says that this service is groundbreaking and is the world's first delivery service for bringing food and items to the car. The idea is that Volvo owners can have their groceries delivered to the car no matter where they are.
AT&T and IBM are teaming up for the Internet of Things (IoT) on a huge scale, planning to outfit smart cities with cameras, roads, utility meters, and more that can all intercommunicate as residents and cars move around them. The "global alliance" will see AT&T and IBM first look at gathering and crunching Big Data from cities and utilities, potentially integrating news of traffic jams, parking lot congestion, where police and other emergency services are located, and even social media reports from those living or working in the city to dynamically shape urban planning.
Yahoo has inked a deal with Carnegie Mellon University to test machine-learning research, new mobile interfaces, and natural-language recognition on search and other real-time data. Dubbed Project InMind, the five year partnership is worth $10m and will see Yahoo Labs set up a new fellowship program at the university, while CMU students can dig into Yahoo's data to see how online systems can better predict and cater for user needs and intentions.
Epson can forgive you if your first thought when you hear augmented reality is Google Glass, even though you're wrong. Google may never had actually described its wearable as an AR device, but a combination of the over-promising original concept video and a general naivety about the segment overall led many would-be Glass wearers to be surprised at what the headset really is: a convenient notifications pane in the corner of your vision. If you're looking for true AR, though, Epson might have the answer. We caught up with the company to check out its latest headset, the Moverio BT-200, and find out why it's confident it can become the de-facto choice for augmented reality.
Renault has revealed its own autonomous car prototype, the NEXT TWO, a self-driving vehicle that the French company says could launch by 2020. Unlike most such concepts we've seen, such as Nissan's autonomous Leaf EV or Google's long-running project, Renault has taken a more tempered approach, aiming to take over tedious city driving and parking duties while leaving higher-speed travel to the human behind the wheel.
Blu Products has been releasing a number of new smartphones that run the Android operating system recently. Back in late December 2013, Blu launched its flagship phone called the Life Pure. That device had a 5-inch screen with 441 ppi pixel density. The company has announced another new device that has just debuted.