Expect the battle for smartwatch supremacy to really get interesting in just a few months. It is being reported that Google will be unveil its smartwatch plans next month, with an actual announcement coming in June at Google I/O. And like they do with their Nexus, Google will not be manufacturing the hardware. Instead, LG will step up to the plate. Google is very happy with the job LG has done with the Nexus 4 and Nexus 5 that tasking them with a smartwatch was an easy choice. The software for the smartwatch is believed to be based on Google Now, much like Google Glass.
In the middle of the night, @evleaks than tweeted a statement aligning itself with the previously stated announcement date. He said “Apparently Google’s smartwatch is being made by LG, and will launch at I/O.” Does he know something we don’t? Probably. But we’ll just have to keep waiting until more information trickles out until next month when Google is said to give a preview of the smartwatch. Read more
According to a new report by CNET, Google is set to move the Google barge docked at Treasure Island’s Pier One within a month. The barge is a floating showroom made out of shipping containers which would feature new technologies. The California state agency said Google was informed to either file a construction permit or move its construction project to another location.
It seems Google refused to file a permit and instead, chose to move its project to a different location. The barge project has been put on hold for quite some time now due to issues raised by several government groups. When the project is completed, the barge will serve as a showroom while the top deck will serve as a “party” area.
Qualcomm announced its Toq smartwatch last year and made it available for sale back in December 2013 for a price of $350, which was quite expensive. However, Qualcomm has now cut $100 off its original price bringing it down to $249.
The timing may not be a coincidence after we heard a report that HTC might unveil a smartwatch based on the Qualcomm Toq at MWC 2014. With a price tag of $249, the Toq smartwatch is a dollar more expensive than its competitor, the Pebble Steel. The Toq smartwatch features a color touchscreen display that is always active and on while lasting for a couple of days between charges due to a Mirasol low power display fitted to the device. Read more
There’s a handy new app in the Play Store that does you the favor of backing up tons of your important information automatically, just in case something bad happens to the app you’re typing in before you can back it up yourself. Type Machine acts as a service that automatically records all of the text from whatever app you’re using, functioning as a pretty powerful “time machine” in case your app crashes or you just want a history of what you’ve typed in case you change your mind, like in an extremely long email. Read more
No, that is not the ‘HTC One Max 2′ you are looking at. That is an unidentified Huawei phablet sitting next to the company’s upcoming smartwatch. The reason I say unidentified is because while the MediaPad X1 is coming, its design doesn’t quite match this. Above is a premium aluminum device that is almost identical to what HTC’s devices look like. The MediaPad X1; however, looks like the front is all plastic.
The image, posted by @evleaks, was attached with a comment saying “WOW-wei” and I agree with that proclamation. If Huawei keeps up this kind of design language, people will certainly give them a look (as will HTC when they serve Huawei with a lawsuit). Read more
That was quick. Right after the Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo leaked this morning (and tonight), Samsung has made both smartwatches official in Barcelona. While they look strikingly similar to the original Galaxy Gear, there have been some changes inside and out. But the biggest change is that Android is no longer under the hood. Samsung’s very own Tizen is. What does this mean for device compatibility? Well, Samsung says that it will work with various Galaxy devices right away. Despite not running Android, Samsung has announced CNN, Weather Channel, and Garmin among others have created an app for their Tizen-powered smartwatches. A dual-core processor clocked at 1GHz is running the show here.
What’s the difference between the Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo? The latter will not have a camera and the weight of the smartwatch will be lighter than its camera-featured sibling. With typical use, both smartwatches should get 2-3 days on a full battery. Light use will net around 6 days. The Gear 2 will be available in Charcoal Black, Gold Brown and Wild Orange and the Gear 2 Neo has Charcoal Black, Mocha Grey and Wild Orange color options. As of now, pricing is still unannounced for both devices.
Hit the break for the official press release. Read more
Earlier today we found out that the Galaxy Gear’s successor would not be Galaxy-branded and it would be joined by the Gear 2 Neo. In that same leak, we also saw what the two devices would look like. And thanks again to @evleaks, here is the Gear 2. This time it has an orange wristband (as does the current Galaxy Gear). Below the display is likely a home button. And above, it looks like the bulky camera from last year’s design has been absorbed into the main structure. Read more
According to a new report, the successor to the YotaPhone might be unveiled at the MWC 2014 which is set to take place on February 24. The first generation of Yota phone was unveiled at last year’s MWC in Barcelona featuring a dual screen and was up for sale back in December 2013.
While the exact specs of the device is not known yet, the YotaPhone 2 should feature a larger dual screen, consisting of an LCD touchscreen on one side while an E-Ink display on the other side with full touch capabilities. Read more
Here’s an interesting piece of information to develop over the weekend. On Twitter, @evleaks posted an image of the Galaxy Gear 2 and Galaxy Gear 2 Neo smartwatches. After some of his followers felt that they could not clearly see the small image, he posted another one (above). Then, after that, he explained that the two watches will not be Galaxy-branded. It seems that Samsung’s smartwatches will be leaving the Galaxy nest in order to make their own name. Why? Perhaps Samsung wants to spawn the Gear name into a series of wearables. Remember, they could also be unveiling the Gear Fit on Monday.
For the Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo, it looks like like Samsung is not overhauling the software. But with the hardware, a home button may actually be added below the display. And what’s the difference between the two? It looks like the Gear 2 (on the left) will have a chrome finish while the Gear 2 Neo (on the right) will be matte.
Hit the break for @evleaks’ full tweets. Read more
In the past, there has been some controversy surrounding Facebook’s policy that applies to accounts of deceased members. Before now, after a Facebook member passed away, the only people able to view the deceased person’s account are his/her Facebook friends, regardless of his/her former privacy settings before he/she died.
Now, the privacy settings on the person’s account will remain, so that if the user’s settings were more or less limited, their wishes before death will be honored.