CES: How Will the ‘Internet of Things’ Fit into Everyday Life?

The 2015 International CES promises to mark a significant turning point in the Internet of Things (IoT) — fully acknowledging that we know little about the final form that the concept will eventually take. However slowly the variety of sensors become tied to the things around us (and on ourselves), IoT will provide endless opportunities for both dead ends and the realization of promises that will most assuredly surprise us. Expect this conversation to be a major theme in Las Vegas next month. Continue reading CES: How Will the ‘Internet of Things’ Fit into Everyday Life?

CES: Digitizing Your Environment via the ‘Internet of Things’

As social media has become a ubiquitous medium for interacting with our closest confidants and broader audiences, we have become accustomed to digitizing all sorts of personal info, from contact lists to our current mood. The 2015 CES looks poised to showcase the evolution of this digitization process, with eyes firmly fixed on our personal surroundings. In addition to the cultural effects of the anticipated “sensorization” revolution, other tech is striving to make it a reality at home, on the road and everywhere in between. Continue reading CES: Digitizing Your Environment via the ‘Internet of Things’

CES: Sony to Demo Module That Makes Any Glasses ‘Smart’

Sony has announced a possible competitor to Google Glass, essentially a module that clips onto eyewear to make them smart. The company’s lightweight, single-lens display module attaches to glasses, sunglasses, goggles, or other eyewear to add a color OLED micro-display and connected camera. The module weighs a mere 40g and can be removed when not in use. Sony is expected to showcase a prototype at the 2015 CES in Las Vegas next month under the name “SmartEyeglass Attach.” Continue reading CES: Sony to Demo Module That Makes Any Glasses ‘Smart’

App Creates 3D Photospheres, New Potential for Mobile VR

San Francisco-based startup Fyusion released a new version of its Fyuse app this week that allows users to record 3D “surround view” photospheres. Users press record and move their phone for a few seconds. Fyuse then renders the images on the device and offers the result for sharing on its platform. The app, available for iOS and Android, is designed to augment everything from selfies to fashion shows, but may also prove successful as a compelling way to bring user-generated content to mobile VR. Continue reading App Creates 3D Photospheres, New Potential for Mobile VR

Comcast Launches Ultra HD VOD App for Samsung 4K TVs

Comcast is offering select television programming in Ultra HD, available for compatible 2014 Samsung 4K TVs. Comcast Xfinity customers will initially be able to stream NBC’s “Chicago Fire” and USA Network’s “Covert Affairs” and “Suits” to Samsung sets via the Internet. Comcast will expand its UHD offerings in 2015, including NBC’s “Parks and Recreation” in February. Amazon, DirecTV, M-GO, Netflix and Sony are among those that have also launched Ultra HD video services. Continue reading Comcast Launches Ultra HD VOD App for Samsung 4K TVs

Virtual and Augmented Reality to Have Major Presence at CES

Virtual and augmented reality tools have been around for at least 40 years. In 2014 the next generation of VR and AR hardware was being energetically developed, beta tested, and discussed by the niche VR community. It was also used to create small-scale experiences as part of the marketing campaigns for other entertainment assets. Expect 2015 to be the year when hardware, software, and content companies work towards consumer adoption of VR and AR resources and experiences. Continue reading Virtual and Augmented Reality to Have Major Presence at CES

2015 International CES: ETC Anticipates ‘Year of the Product’

CES 2014 introduced a compelling array of new concepts and prototypes for next generation electronics, technology and consumer entertainment devices. This year, as the ETC@USC gears up for the January 6-9 confab in Las Vegas, our reporters anticipate delivery on many of the promises made last winter and expect to see a collection of innovative products and services — from UHD and VR to the Internet of Everything — on display across the show’s more than 2 million square feet of exhibit space. Continue reading 2015 International CES: ETC Anticipates ‘Year of the Product’

UHD Displays Expected to Take Center Stage at January’s CES

Ultra HD displays will deliver on last year’s promise at the 2015 International CES next month. Expect to see 4K/UHD sets with very attractive prices. Set manufacturers Vizio and Acer have already launched 4K displays for $1,000 and under, and other manufacturers are likely to unveil similarly low-cost models. Chinese UHD display manufacturers, that have had a strong presence at recent CES events, will continue their efforts to understand the U.S. consumer and break into the U.S. market at lower price points. Continue reading UHD Displays Expected to Take Center Stage at January’s CES

Internet of Things: Google Makes a Call for Research Proposals

If the much-hyped “Internet of Things” is to reach its full envisioned potential, many believe there needs to be a recognized set of open standards that will enable technologists and developers to work together to connect devices and systems. To that end, Google announced it is establishing an open innovation and research program with plans to develop and formalize the research, standards, security, privacy and systems to help realize a fully “connected” society. Continue reading Internet of Things: Google Makes a Call for Research Proposals

CES 2015: LG Expected to Unveil its New 55-Inch 8K Display

According to insiders at LG, the company’s new 8K display has been airlifted to Las Vegas for next month’s 2015 International Consumer Electronics Show. LG Display engineers will accompany the prototype to its CES booth. Codenamed “Mabinogion,” the 55-inch display features a resolution of 33.2 million pixels, more than 20 display driver integrated circuits, and a brightness of 500 nits. LG Electronics (LG Display’s largest client) is rumored to be adding an 8K TV to its UHD lineup next year. Continue reading CES 2015: LG Expected to Unveil its New 55-Inch 8K Display

Connected Televisions in U.S. Households Jump to 168 Million

According to research from Strategy Analytics, the average U.S. home with broadband service now has 1.9 connected TV devices, up 28 percent from Q3 2013, and up 5 percent from the second quarter of 2014. The report indicates there are now 168 million connected smart TVs, Blu-ray players, IP-enabled game consoles and streaming devices such as Apple TV, Roku and Google Chromecast. Samsung maintained a 35 percent share of smart TV shipments during the third quarter. Continue reading Connected Televisions in U.S. Households Jump to 168 Million

New Apple-IBM Partnership Unveils First Apps for Enterprise

Apple and IBM released 10 apps this week designed for businesses and governments. The apps are the first to come out of the tech companies’ new partnership and target sectors such as air travel, banking and retail. Apple is looking to put new life into its lagging iPad sales by drawing business users, while IBM hopes to catch up in the mobile space. The two companies are working with 50 corporations to create apps for Apple mobile devices; the next round is slated for release early next year. Continue reading New Apple-IBM Partnership Unveils First Apps for Enterprise

Hearst Makes a Major Investment in DWA’s AwesomenessTV

Publisher Hearst is paying $81.25 million for a 25 percent interest in DreamWorks Animation’s AwesomenessTV. Announced yesterday, the deal will help Hearst leverage a younger audience, while DWA will use the cash infusion to help develop the fast-growing AwesomenessTV business. The pact plans to help AwesomenessTV expand into new content channels, broaden its audience and expand its geographic reach. AwesomenessTV will also gain access to Hearst’s subscription VOD platform. Continue reading Hearst Makes a Major Investment in DWA’s AwesomenessTV

Health & Fitness is Fastest Growing Category on Google Play

Google released an end-of-year rundown that measures the most popular apps on its Play Store. This year’s fastest growing app category has been health and fitness, led by diet tracker MyFitnessPal. With 100,000 mobile health apps available now for Android and iOS, the global health and fitness app market is worth about $4 billion. In other categories, Facebook topped social, Netflix was the leader in entertainment, Pandora was the most popular music app, and Flipagram led the photography category. Continue reading Health & Fitness is Fastest Growing Category on Google Play

Instagram Now Bigger Than Twitter, Looks to Brand Advertising

Instagram — the photo- and video-sharing app owned by Facebook — announced yesterday that it presently has 300 million monthly active users, up 50 percent in nine months (more than 70 percent of its users are now outside the United States). The new numbers suggest that the social service is more popular than Twitter today (Twitter recorded 284 million monthly active users for Q3). Instagram is looking to leverage its meteoric popularity to engage users in new ways, and draw advertisers at the same time. Continue reading Instagram Now Bigger Than Twitter, Looks to Brand Advertising

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