• Ford Taps VR To Re-Create Car Racing Through Paris
    In 1976, French director Claude Lelouch released a nine-minute film depicting a car racing through the streets of a sleeping Paris. C’était un Rendez-Vous gained popularity with car fans and saw releases in VHS and DVD formats over the years. Ford is offering its take on the classic, replacing the original Mercedes-Benz 450SEL 6.9 (which was dubbed with the sounds from a Ferrari 275GTB) with a Mustang and upgrading the footage to 360-degree views and virtual reality. Lelouch helped with the remake of his film, entitled Re-Rendez-Vous, to celebrate its 40th anniversary. This is not his first time working with the pony car — the protagonist of Lelouch’s ...
  • AT&T Plans Nationwide IoT Network By Midyear
    AT&T is accelerating its rollout of LTE-M, an IoT network that’s already being used to track shipping containers and pallets, monitor water use and connect fleets to the internet. The carrier said Tuesday it will have nationwide LTE-M coverage in the U.S. by the middle of this year, six months ahead of schedule. Previously, AT&T had said LTE-M would cover the U.S. by year’s end. That means everywhere in the country that AT&T has an LTE network, it will also offer LTE-M. By the end of the year, it will have LTE-M across Mexico too, creating a broad coverage area for ...
  • Many Consumers OK With Monitoring By Beacons In Stores
    Beacons have not yet been adopted by most US retailers, but consumers are open to the idea of retailers using in-store technologies to monitor their behavior in-store—if there’s something in it for them. Beacons use Bluetooth technology to detect consumers’ smartphones and send them ads, coupons or other product information. A November 2016 survey of US internet users from TimeTrade found that nearly half of respondents don’t mind being monitored by beacons or Wi-Fi technologies while shopping, as long as it benefits them in some way. 
  • Consumers Turn Away From High Tech Shopping Aids
    Stores are spending lots of time and money trying out new, fancy technologies such as touchscreen mirrors in changing rooms and robo-assistants out in the racks to get consumers to buy more. Shoppers couldn’t care less. Lowe’s Cos., the home improvement store, has a “Holoroom” that lets customers design spaces with virtual reality goggles. Nordstrom Inc. has a chatbot, an automated substitute for a human store assistant, meant to provide shoppers (both online and in-store) with gift ideas during the holidays. Rebecca Minkoff LLC, the women’s clothing retailer, has futuristic walls and mirrors you can interact with—all in a bid to facilitate the shopping experience. 
  • Market Continues To Wait For Magic Leap's Mixed Reality
    There is vaporware and then there's oh-shut-up-and-just-release-the-damn-product-ware. The latter is what many have come to think of when the name Magic Leap is mentioned. And with good reason. Founded back in 2011, the hype train for what many believe is an augmented reality headset or glasses company left the station around 2014. Since then, the company has racked up investments from the likes of Google and others amounting to over $1 billion, as well as tantalizing testimonials from high-profile names who have tried the technology and have indicated that it's so impressive it may change computing forever.  There was just one problem, the first ...
  • Apple Gets Patent For Virtual 'Home' Button
    The iPhone's home button may not be long for this world. Apple has been granted a patent for an "interactive display panel with IR diodes" -- a method that would let users activate a device through a virtual home button placed within the touchscreen. The technology, described in a filing made public Tuesday by the US Patent and Trade Office, could replace the physical home button that's traditionally occupied the space below the iPhone's screen. The patent was first spotted by Apple-tracking site AppleInsider. Ever since Apple co-founder Steve Jobs introduced the iPhone in 2007, the round home button has been a focal ...
  • Smartwatch Tracks How Much Time Parent Shares With Child
    Veldt Inc developed a smartwatch that automatically measures the time during which family members share time with each other. Veldt (Setagaya-ku, Tokyo) is a company that manufactures and sells wearable devices and IoT (Internet of Things)-related products. The smartwatch, "Tottori West Family Time Watch," will be used for a tour for experiencing migration to the western part of Tottori Prefecture.
  • Smart Mirrors Added To Store Dressing Rooms
    Since e-commerce began threatening stores last decade, retailers have been trying to make their locations operate more like the web. Yet despite splurging on the latest bells and whistles, they’ve mostly failed and fallen further behind their online rivals. Recent efforts—such as QR codes, which call up merchandise information when scanned with a smartphone, and internet kiosks, where shoppers can browse a retailer’s online store—are either too far ahead of, or behind, shoppers technologically, so they haven’t been embraced, says Brendan Witcher, an expert on retail strategies at Forrester. Plus they do little to improve the actual shopping experience, he ...
  • HTC To Launch Mobile VR Device, Says Report
    HTC will soon launch a new virtual reality toy you can use on the go. The device will be compatible with HTC's new flagship phone, the U Ultra. But HTC says it won't be just a simple headset like Samsung's Gear VR. VR, which puts headset wearers into a computer-generated digital world, has swept across the tech industry over the last few years. HTC bet on the high end with its Vive system, which requires a pricey, powerful PC to run. But there are more affordable options like the Gear VR and the Google Daydream View that work by plugging in ...
  • FTC Files Privacy Concern Over High Tech Doll
    With its built-in microphone, Bluetooth connectivity, and web-based functions, the new My Friend Cayla doll from Genesis Toys might seem like a fun and interactive toy for children. Basically, children can ask the doll questions and it will search for an answer, uniquely combining traditional a toy with the future of consumer information technology. But once you get passed that initial excitement over what this toy can actually do you might also start to have concerns over what this doll might be able to do without you knowing. This is certainly the case with the My Friend Cayla doll as ...
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