Wearable

EyeForcer forces your kids to stop looking down at their phones

EyeForcer forces your kids to stop looking down at their phones

With the rise of smartphones and tablets, we're spending more time looking down at our hands than ever. Go to any public place, and you'll see people hunched over their phones, checking Facebook, Tweeting, or watching videos. Our bodies aren't designed to hold that position for long periods, and that can cause painful issues. One company has their eye on this problem, and aims to fix it.

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OnePlus had a near-finished smartwatch, but decided to ‘focus’ on phones instead

OnePlus had a near-finished smartwatch, but decided to ‘focus’ on phones instead

Right now, Chinese manufacturer OnePlus is known for producing quality Android-based smartphones at budget-friendly prices. It's a small company, but that focus on high-end phones with flagship-level specs is what makes them standout in a growing sea of other low-priced Android devices. However, OnePlus nearly entered the smartwatch game — another crowded market — going so far as to complete a design, but decided to scrap the device out of concern of losing focus.

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Cortana arrives on Microsoft Band 2 for Android users

Cortana arrives on Microsoft Band 2 for Android users

Good news for Microsoft Band 2 owners who pair their wearable with an Android device: you're now getting one of the last big features that, until now, has been exclusive to Windows Phone. Microsoft has updated its Health app, in turn enabling Cortana on the Band 2 and allowing users to issue voice commands. This update makes the Band 2 work with Android in just about every single way it does with Microsoft's own Windows Phone platform.

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Microsoft rolls out Outlook watch face for Android Wear

Microsoft rolls out Outlook watch face for Android Wear

It was only in April that Microsoft Outlook made its debut as an Android Wear app, but a new update has just been released that turns Outlook into a watch face. This means users can skip the need to tap and navigate the UI on their wrist, and instead see both email and calendar information on the same screen as the clock. Instead of relying on a notification, users can simply raise their wrist to check the time, and also see an overview of schedule and unread emails.

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Visa payment ring makes wireless NFC payments at Rio Olympics

Visa payment ring makes wireless NFC payments at Rio Olympics

We've seen several tech-enabled rings in the last few years, from failed attempts at turning them into gesture motion controllers, to new ones that prevent a partner from streaming a new TV show episode without you. But now Visa is taking a stab at it by turning the ring into a contactless payments device. Just like you'd swipe your smartphone over a terminal to make a payment, Visa's ring puts your credit card directly on your finger.

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What smartwatches are still getting wrong

What smartwatches are still getting wrong

It's been more than three years since the first modern commercial smartwatches, the Pebble and the Sony SmartWatch, hit the market and this wearable device category still hasn't taken the industry by storm. In the meantime, less powerful and less featured smart fitness bands are flooding the market and is giving some well-deserved and long overdue attention to healthier lifestyles (at least hopefully). These two device categories sometimes share some features, like notifications and activity tracking. Sometimes they even share in price tags. And yet smarwatches aren't regarded with the same esteem and market share as their health-centric cousins. The issue might not just be because smartwatches answer the problems wrong. They might also be answering the wrong problems.

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Pebble Core and Amazon’s Alexa become best pals

Pebble Core and Amazon’s Alexa become best pals

Those who have been underestimating or even simply ignoring Amazon's conquest into the voice-controlled personal assistant space should probably start taking a second look. Alexa is starting to pop up everywhere! While she/it still mostly remains inside Amazon's devices, like the Echo or Fire TV, it is starting to expand to other third-party products and also expand its connection with other platforms. The later to join that small but growing club is Pebble, whose admittedly intriguing Pebble Core will feature Alexa within it when it launches.

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Samsung Gear Fit 2, Gear IconX Hands-on: Putting fitness at the top

Samsung Gear Fit 2, Gear IconX Hands-on: Putting fitness at the top

Although smartwatches are relatively slower to gain traction, the fitness wearable market has exploded in the past year or two. Almost anyone and everyone has a fitness tracker, whether a smart wristband or a clip, or both. And those that don't fall back on their well-equipped smartphones and some tracking app. Gym memberships, racing events, and fitness device purchases all reveal a growing fad, if not obsession, over fitness. Not one to be left behind, Samsung is showing off the new, improved, and more ergonomic Gear Fit 2 sports band as well as the intriguing Gear IconX "fitness earset" to keep you company in your journey to a healthier, yet hi-tech, lifestyle.

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Xiaomi debuts Mi Band 2 with OLED display

Xiaomi debuts Mi Band 2 with OLED display

China's Xiaomi has just announced the new Mi Band 2 fitness tracker, the company's third wearable after the original Mi Band and Mi Band Pulse. While Xiaomi has become mostly known for its smartphones lately, it's also found success with wearables in its domestic Chinese market, having sold more than 20 million devices so far. Now that its recognized as the second-largest wearable maker in the world after Fitbit, Xiaomi looks to continue that growth with the Mi Band 2.

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Qualcomm outs Snapdragon Wear 1100 for target-purpose wearables

Qualcomm outs Snapdragon Wear 1100 for target-purpose wearables

When smartwatches arrived on the scene almost two years ago, there were still no components specially designed to the still unheard of device. That meant manufacturers had to make do retrofitting smartphone pieces for smartwatches, which practically meant using unoptimized hardware. February this year, Qualcomm unveiled the Snapdragon Wear 2100 to offer a system-on-chip solution more suited for smartwatches and similar multi-purpose devices. Now at Computex 2016, it is following that up with the Snapdragon Wear 1100 which targets more special-purpose devices instead.

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Jawbone reported to exit fitness wearables business as well

Jawbone reported to exit fitness wearables business as well

Earlier this week reports surfaced about Jawbone looking for a buyer for its wireless speaker division, allowing it to focus on its health and fitness trackers, which the company is more known for these days, instead. However, a new follow-up report from Tech Insider has indicated that even Jawbone's wearables business is in trouble, and all production of the UP line of trackers has been stopped.

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As Kickstarter soars, Pebble answers questions (but early-adopters won’t be happy)

As Kickstarter soars, Pebble answers questions (but early-adopters won’t be happy)

To call Pebble's latest Kickstarter a success is a wild understatement, but that didn't stop would-be smartwatch buyers having questions about the company's 2016 line-up. Crowdfunding for Pebble 2, Pebble Time 2, and Pebble Core hit the company's $1m goal in just over an hour, and with 34 days still to run on the campaign there's already around $8m in the pot.

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