Wearable

Google MODE made to snap-and-swap for Android (Wear)

Google MODE made to snap-and-swap for Android (Wear)

It would appear that Google would like to get out ahead of the masses when it comes to "plug and play" for hardware. Not just for smartphones. They've got a program in the works for that, too - no, this "MODE" they speak of is for hardware only. Not electronics. Made to attach to electronics, of course, but hardware in and of itself. The first wave of Google's MODE brand is made for Android Wear devices. A series of straps have been made to snap in and out with extreme ease.

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Nokia acquires Withings to make more devices

Nokia acquires Withings to make more devices

It would seem more and more each time Nokia reveals another acquisition that they got the better end of the deal when they sold their phones division to Microsoft. Today they've announced that they've made a deal with Withings to acquire their digital health products and apps business in its entirety. This means that Nokia's back in business - in one of the most (surprisingly) long lasting sectors of the smart device universe over the past decade - health technology. Devices. Apps. Withings is about to be part of Nokia.

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de Grisogono confirms Samsung Gear S3 inbound, luxury version too

de Grisogono confirms Samsung Gear S3 inbound, luxury version too

Although still a minor player in the smartwatch market compared to giants like the Apple Watch and the combined Android Wear army, Samsung's Gear S2 put a new spin, quite literally, on the wearable with its rotating dial control. So far, however, it hasn't been the subject of much attention in terms of shipment and sales stats, so there was never a certainty that Samsung would follow it up. Cast all doubts aside famed luxury jeweler de Grisogono has publicly confirmed that there will indeed be a Gear S3. Or at least an exorbitantly expensive one.

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Now you can also play Counter Strike on Android Wear

Now you can also play Counter Strike on Android Wear

Just as smartphones have become really small computers, in the layman sense of the word, so too have smartwatches become even tinier equivalents. Given how humans have a natural inclination to tinker and push the limits, we knew it will only be a matter of time before someone takes smartwatches beyond their intended purpose. Indeed, we've seen such wearables run old console games or even old operating systems. This latest attempt definitely takes the cake for bringing the iconic first person shooter Counter Strike to Android Wear smartwatches.

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You may need your iPhone, but the Apple Watch 2 won’t

You may need your iPhone, but the Apple Watch 2 won’t

Steve Wozniak might be worried about the product's direction and critics might have already declared it a failure, but the numbers speak in the Apple Watch's favor. In its first anniversary, Apple's first and so far only wearable is believed to have performed better than the iPhone in its own first year, with Apple selling twice as much Apple Watches. Despite lingering disappointment in some corners, those figures might be giving Apple the confidence boost to actually make the next Apple Watch work independently from an iPhone, going as far as sporting its own Internet connection.

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Your password could soon be a sound from your skull

Your password could soon be a sound from your skull

Fingerprint scanners are becoming the norm for unlocking our mobile devices these days, while iris and facial recognition are also being explored, but the next big solution in biometric authentication might be something that can only come from inside your head. Literally. A group of university researchers in Germany have come up with a system that uses a unique sound that comes from within a user's skull.

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New Apple Watch apps required to be native, work without iPhone

New Apple Watch apps required to be native, work without iPhone

Apple sent a notice to developers on Friday notifying them that starting June 1st, any new apps for the Apple Watch must run on the smartwatch natively in order to be submitted to the App Store. This means news apps are required to be built with the latest watchOS 2 SDK, as support for the 1.0 SDK and any apps built with it is being discontinued.

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Garmin’s new Approach X40 is a golf-based fitness wearable

Garmin’s new Approach X40 is a golf-based fitness wearable

Garmin has announced a new fitness tracker today, and it has a specific appeal for golfers looking to keep active. The Approach X40 takes on the appearance of a standard digital display-equipped wearable, and has several features that are right at home on the golf course, but it balances that with other tracking options that will keep it useful even when wearers aren't teeing off.

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Gear S2 Band Adapter lets you use Classic straps and more

Gear S2 Band Adapter lets you use Classic straps and more

The Samsung Gear S2 brought something new to the smartwatch table. Whereas most smartwatches are controlled via touchscreens or buttons or both, the Gear S2 took advantage of the hitherto unused bezels to offer a rotating dial for additional control. In typical Samsung fashion, there is more than one Gear S2 model, with different price tags and, sadly, incompatible lugs. Now Samsung is rectifying that situation, at least in one direction, with the Gear S2 Band Adapter that will let you use any 20 mm strap, including the Gear S2 Classic's straps.

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Reserve Strap in trouble: Apple blocks Apple Watch hidden port

Reserve Strap in trouble: Apple blocks Apple Watch hidden port

It's one of those stories where you can't really blame either side for the unfortunate but inevitable outcome. On the one hand, Reserve Strap tried to be a hero to answer the clamor for a longer Apple Watch battery life, utilizing hardware that Apple itself had put inside the smartwatch. On the other hand, Apple is also trying to protect its products and its own interests by limiting access to hardware being used for something it didn't intend. Either way, the result is the same, Reserve Strap is putting shipments on hold because the latest watchOS update makes its product practically useless.

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CoWatch wants to put Amazon’s Alexa on your wrist

CoWatch wants to put Amazon’s Alexa on your wrist

Well, it finally happened. Given the interest poured over both smartwatches as well as voice-controlled virtual assistants, someone was bound to put the two together for Amazon very own Alexa. And now that's happening, or at least will happen if the CoWatch Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign succeeds. And actually goes into production. While running its own "Chronologics OS", the highlight of this smartwatch is definitely its integration with Amazon Echo, which, in turn, opens up the possibilities of connecting with and controlling other devices, appliances, and, of course, the smartwatch itself.

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Now you can manage Outlook email on Android Wear

Now you can manage Outlook email on Android Wear

Your smartwatch may seem like the last device you'd want to read and manage your email on, but as the variety of email apps on the Apple Watch has shown, there are some people out there who do. It also proves that the wrist may not be such a bad location to take care of email from after all. With that, now Android Wear device owners can get in on the action, as Microsoft has finally released an Outlook app for Google's wearable-based OS.

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