Must Read Bits & Bytes

Withings Activité Pop finally melds watch and smarts

Withings Activité Pop finally melds watch and smarts

Withings turned heads with its first smartwatch, the Activité, approaching the wearables market from the timepiece end rather than the gadget mindset. The result was a fitness tracker that didn't look like an oversized Livestrong band, but while it certainly felt the part from a wristwatch perspective, at $450 it certainly wasn't an option for the mass market. Enter the Activité Pop, a cut-price version with the same core features but a far more palatable $149.95 price tag.

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Narrative Clip 2 gets WiFi, Bluetooth and 8MP upgrade

Narrative Clip 2 gets WiFi, Bluetooth and 8MP upgrade

Times can be tough when you're trying to kickstart a new wearables segment, use crowdfunding to pay for it, and facing society's growing concerns around privacy, but Narrative and its Clip life-logging camera seem to be doing alright. Fresh to CES 2015, the Narrative Clip 2 keeps the core concept of snapping a photo every 30 seconds and highlighting the best for you, but gives hardware and software a comprehensive upgrade. So, the new Clip 2 has WiFi and Bluetooth where its predecessor had only USB, a modular back for more imaginative mounting, and - most importantly - an 8-megapixel sensor with better low-light performance. I sat down with CMO Oskar Kalmaru in Narrative's new San Francisco workspace to find out how a year of life-logging has shaped the new camera.

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The one CES Apple might not win

The one CES Apple might not win

In just a few days we begin again with the year's biggest US-based technology conference: CES 2015. Over the past several years, it's been almost a tradition for news outlets to suggest that Apple was either alive and well at CES or in some way or another "winning" the crowd over without actually, physically being at the event series to represent themselves. As far as we know. This year is a little different. This year is the first in which Apple has a new product announced before CES but won't be releasing it until later this year.

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Back to the Future delivers in 2015 with Nike, VR, Tony Hawk, and Pepsi

Back to the Future delivers in 2015 with Nike, VR, Tony Hawk, and Pepsi

Easily one of the most iconic sets of scenes in a film about the future appears in the epic comedy Back to the Future II. In this film we travel forward to the year 2015 to the day November 5th. In the year 2011, Nike blasted everyone's faces off with the first release of the Nike MAG - that's the pair of shoes that appear in BTTF2 - without the Power Laces. Fast-forward to February of 2014 and the designer of the MAG shoes confirmed power laces for 2015. These are just one of a set of products inspired by BTTF2 and prepped for release this year, the year they're supposed to have been on the market.

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Aliens sequel visualized by director of District 9, Elysium [UPDATE]

Aliens sequel visualized by director of District 9, Elysium [UPDATE]

We don't really know what to believe when it comes to this proposed sequel to Aliens. Images posted by Director and Visual Effects artist Neill Blomkamp have sparked our interest, that's for certain - but whether or not he'd actually been attached to a film is unconfirmed. What we do know is that we'd certainly have loved to see a dark, alternate universe in the eye of Blomkamp, especially after seeing these illustrations. Blomkamp previously directed Elysium and District 9 - his next film is Chappie.

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Here’s how Sony will apologize for PlayStation downtime

Here’s how Sony will apologize for PlayStation downtime

Sony is hoping to pacify PlayStation gamers frustrated by the PSN downtime over the holidays, apologizing for the gaming network being offline, and offering free service and cheaper games as a mea culpa. Having seen the PlayStation Network brought down by hacking group Lizard Squad on Christmas Day, and then taken several days to bring it back to life afterwards, Sony is automatically adding five days of PlayStation Plus service to all subscribers or trial users impacted on December 25th. Meanwhile, there'll be a discount on games sometime this month, though it's unclear whether PS3 and PS4 owners will be suitably placated by it.

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Five ways to repurpose (or sell!) unwanted tech

Five ways to repurpose (or sell!) unwanted tech

Someone got you that thing you wanted during the holidays, and that’s awesome. Maybe someone got you something you really didn’t want, which is a lot less awesome. Either way, you’ve now got some gifts or devices that need to be dealt with. Whether it’s a smartphone or tablet, we’ve got a few cool ways to get rid of your extra device, or just cycle it back through the mill to give it a new life. You might even make a few bucks!

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SlashGear’s Best Tech of 2014

SlashGear’s Best Tech of 2014

Twelve months, thousands upon thousands of gadgets, and we're about to start it all over again. 2014 draws to a close with a bumper crop of technology under our belts, so before we head through into the new year and the very latest and greatest that the consumer electronics industry thinks we should hemorrhage our wallets to acquire, it only seems right to take a look back through the products that have most impressed us. Tablets, smartphones, odd camera accessories, and more, all wrapped up in the SlashGear team's pick of the best tech of 2014.

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2016 Audi S6 and A6 first-drive – Autobahn blitz

2016 Audi S6 and A6 first-drive – Autobahn blitz

There are some interesting options when you're in the market for a big sedan from the mid-$40s upwards, but the 2016 Audi A6 and S6 are hoping to make their case that they're all the car you need. Overshadowed in recent years by the stunning A7/S7, Audi's handsome sedan is making a renewed play for 2015 with updates across the styling, engines, transmissions, and the accommodations inside. I headed to the autobahns of Dresden, Germany, to see how the A6 and S6 hold up.

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FBI gives Sony hack theories audience but no credence

FBI gives Sony hack theories audience but no credence

The FBI may be convinced that the Sony hack was the handiwork of North Korea, but not everyone is convinced, with private investigators briefing US security agencies on alternative explanations for the breach. Security firm Norse has joined a growing chorus of those who doubt the official account, describing the speedy assignment of blame on the secretive foreign state as a warning signal that a conclusion might have been rushed. While the FBI still insists Sony was the victim of a North Korea-led attack, it's nonetheless been open to hearing other viewpoints, Norse says.

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