Items tagged with Bluetooth

Brace yourself folks, a new version of Bluetooth is coming and it brings some significant changes to the wireless standard. Chief among them are faster data speeds that are twice what they are in the current version while extending the wireless range fourfold, Bluetooth Special Interest Group executive director Mark Powell revealed in an email sent to U.K. health and monitoring company Blue Maestro.In his email, Powell notes the next iteration will simply be called Bluetooth 5. The decision to drop references to version and point number was a conscious one by SIG members, which includes companies... Read more...
It's pretty common knowledge that using strong passwords is important, but we'd can understand it if you sometimes take shortcuts for the sake of convenience. A great example for many of us would be with our PCs. Given the fact that we login to them all of the time, it can get old typing in (or even trying to remember) your secure password. That's where decisions need to be made: do you use a strong password, or a weaker one to make life easier? Hold that thought, because Microsoft has just come in with a third option: use a strong password and make life easier. With its just-released "Phone Sign-in... Read more...
We first got a glimpse of the Raspberry Pi 3 thanks to an FCC filing, but now Raspberry Pi has officially lifted the veil on its latest mini PC. And today is not a special day just because of the Raspberry Pi 3; it also marks four years exactly since the original 256MB Raspberry Pi Model B was introduced. The Raspberry Pi 3 is fully compatible with the first and second generation models, but brings with it a 1.2GHz 64-bit quad-core processor (it offers roughly ten times the computing performance of the original Raspberry Pi). More importantly, the new Cortex-A53-based processor is between 50 to... Read more...
Users of the Chrome beta for Android are in for a bit of a treat, as the latest version has added support for "Physical Web" beacons. Don't worry if you've never heard of these, because most haven't. Google did talk about it a bit last summer, and it seems like a feature that could be incredibly useful at times. The logic behind the name of "Physical Web" is that data is distributed locally; not over the Internet. The goal is to relay information to those nearby that would prove useful. Say, for example, you're in a restaurant, and as you wait for a seat, a beacon beams the menu to your phone so... Read more...
There's a reason the Lenovo Stack has a ThinkPad logo emblazoned on each component. Over the years, the name ThinkPad has become synonymous with mobile professionals. For the most part, ThinkPad has been reserved for tablets and laptops, but with the Lenovo Stack the company is introducing the brand to an entirely new category: accessories. First unveiled at CES 2015, Stack is as much a new concept as it is a product line. In a nutshell, this is Lenovo's take on a line of peripherals that all work with one another - or stack together - via a custom connector. It's applying the modular computing... Read more...
Connecting a smartphone to an in-car Bluetooth system is a common way to listen to music through the device, but have you ever thought about what else could be possible? How about controlling the entire smartphone through a dash screen? Or controlling media with your steering wheel? That's just what one Nexus 6 owner did, with the help of a couple of different hardware and software products. At the forefront is the App Radio dash screen, a product that costs about $500. Then there's the ARUnchained Android app, which costs around $30. If you want to take things to the next level, you can even install... Read more...
If you’re a fan of Star Trek (and what true techie isn’t?), The Wand Company has just announced what could possibly be one of the greatest smartphone accessories that we’ve seen in quite some time. The company has built a true-to-life Communicator — yes, that Communicator which we saw Captain Kirk whip out on numerous occasions when leading his away team on the surface of uncharted planets. Part of what makes the Communicator so special is that it acts as a Bluetooth handset that connects to your smartphone (hands-free calling and music streaming is supported). So even though the Communicator is... Read more...
After completing a limited and apparently successful test run of its Place Tips feature, Facebook is making available to businesses free Bluetooth beacons in an effort to expand the program. The beacons are small devices that beam one-way signals to the Facebook app of visitors' phones or other mobile device when they're in close proximity. This is a way for businesses and retailers to further engage their customers. Through Place Tips, a business can send out a welcome note and photo, prompt visitors to Like their Facebook page and/or check in, see their friends' recommendations about the establishment,... Read more...
It's time to throw in the towel, folks. Unless you're dining alone, proper etiquette dictates that you put away the smartphone when consuming a meal and actually converse with others around you -- Facebook isn't going anywhere, and the last thing your Snapchat recipients need is yet another lunch photo. Ah, but manners take a backseat to social media, and it's a losing battle to fight it. Knowing this, Kentucky Fried Chicken is embracing the modern era with the KFC Tray Typer, a super-thin Bluetooth keyboard that comes with your meal. Don't expect to receive one at your local KFC. The KFC Tray... Read more...
Mobile phones charged with energy taken out of thin air. What sounds like a modern take on a very old magic trick is actually the Unique Selling Proposition of a smartphone case developed by Nikola Labs and presented for the first time on Monday at the TechCrunch Disrupt event taking place this week in New York City (the Ohio-based company was selected to pitch to the crowd "after being selected by the TechCrunch editorial team and the audience").  According to its developers, the Nikola Labs case is able to use its proprietary energy harvesting circuit to capture the 90 percent of waste... Read more...
If you’re at all interested in the wearables, things are really starting to get interesting as Apple has entered the fray with the Apple Watch and numerous vendors in the Android Wear camp release compelling designs to eager tech geeks. The wearables market is about to get even more competitive thank to a new software announcement by Google, which will bring perhaps the biggest single update to date for the Android Wear platform. The biggest update, at least to my eyes, is the addition of Wi-Fi support. Like previous feature updates which added GPS and offline music support, Wi-Fi support will... Read more...
Amazon’s Fire TV and Fire TV Stick are highly capable media streamer available for extremely attractive prices. The Fire TV has an MSRP of $99 and can regularly be found for $80 or less. The Fire TV Stick has an MSRP of $39. For users that sign up for three months of Sling TV, even bigger discounts can be achieved with both media streamers. Amazon is about to make the Fire TV/Fire TV Stick experience even more compelling with an over-the-air (OTA) software update that will land within the next few weeks. The biggest feature is perhaps the addition of USB storage support on the Fire TV. This will... Read more...
Qualcomm, a behemoth in the semiconductor business, has reportedly agreed to purchase British chip maker CSR for 1.6 billion pounds (around $2.5 billion in U.S. currency). The offer breaks down to £9 per share in cash, which represents a 56.5 percent premium on the company's share price before the start of the offer period in August, and a 27 percent premium on CSR's closing price on Tuesday. The primary appeal here is CSR's experience in Bluetooth wireless technology. Qualcomm is a major player in the mobile market with chips that power a wide range of smartphones and tablets. As the landscape... Read more...
Say goodbye to your dopey toothbrush and hello to a new Bluetooth-enabled smart teeth cleaner that Procter & Gamble is introducing to the public through its Oral-B brand. P&G is planning to show off what it claims is the world's first smartphone-connected toothbrush at Mobile World Congress and then make it widely available to the public in June. That's right, even toothbrushes are getting smart. This particular one can be programmed with the help of a dentist -- for instance, he may want you to spend a bit more time brushing a particular area that you've been neglecting. Through an accompanying... Read more...
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