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Tech round-up: New Apple products and LG launches curved phone
In this week’s exciting Tech Round-Up we unveil new gesture controlled mobiles, take a look at Apple’s rumoured product announcements, bendy phones and Batman on your mobile!
CUTTING EDGE: New Ultrasound Technology for Gesture Controlled Mobiles
The Norwegian start-up Elliptic Labs are in talks with handset manufacturers to make gesture controlled phones utilising their ultrasound technology. This could happen as early as next year and has the potential to affect the entire mobile market.
The technology works through an ultrasound chip that uses sound waves to interpret hand movements. At first glance, this may not seem like anything new but what sets this new tech apart from the competition is the range at which it works.
You can control your phone from over a metre away with the new Elliptic Labs chip and to be honest, that’s pretty exciting. Additional benefits are a 180-degree field of use, lower power consumption and the ability to run in the dark, something visual alternatives simply cannot do.
That’s not to say it doesn’t face stiff competition, the developers of Microsoft Kinect technology are working on a possible mobile offering and Disney have recently announced their magical ‘AirReal’ technology, which lets you feel your games. Exciting times, stay tuned.
APPLE: Set to Launch New MacBook and iPad Models in 2014
Apple plan to release a new 12 inch MacBook laptop with a high resolution display and a 9.7 inch 6th-gen iPad, which is meant to pack an even higher pixel density than a Retina display.
Ming-Chi Kuo, an analyst at KGI Securities recently revealed these new products and expects them to show up in 2014. The new MacBook is meant to strike the right balance between the powerful 13 inch model and the smaller MacBook Air.
Contrary to the rumours, Kuo does not believe it will run on the A-Series chip from the iPhone and iPad and will be powered instead by a more traditional Intel processor. It appears the rumours were incorrect on the new 6th-gen iPad as well, instead of seeing a large 12-inch model we will enjoy a 9.7 inch screen packing 40% more pixels than Apple’s current iPad.
Kuo has developed a strong track record for reporting accurate Apple rumours and with these exciting announcements on the table, let’s hope he doesn’t break that streak.
ANDROID: Rumoured ‘Google Experience’ Launcher in Android 4.4 KitKat
The upcoming Android 4.4 KitKat mobile operating system is rumoured to include a new launcher dubbed ‘Google Experience’. At this point in time, it looks like it will be available from the Google Play store and will help change the look of Android on your device.
The KitKat motto is “to make an amazing Android experience available for everybody” so perhaps this new launcher will play a role in delivering new operating system features to older devices. With rival apps like Nova and Apex Launcher on the scene already offering new Android features, this new ‘Google Experience’ has come at just the right time.
Of course, the potential use for this new launcher is simply speculation at this point but it would make a great deal of sense. Hopefully we will hear more from Google and the Android team over the next few weeks. If they are going to name their new OS after a delicious chocolate bar then it better be good!
GADGETS: Curved ‘LG Flex’ Phone set to be Released Next Month
Press images have started to circulate showing off the new ‘LG Flex’ curved smartphone. This technology has been on the cards for some time with Samsung also recently announcing its ‘Galaxy Round’ device. We all just seem in love with flexible phones at the moment!
That being said, the LG Flex looks good and comes in at a whopping 6 inches. Rumours lead us to believe that we could even see it as early as next month, which would be quite something. Unfortunately, specs and price for the new device are unknown but the buzz is for it to sport a full HD screen and Snapdragon 800 processor.
The device looks very similar to the recently revealed LG G2, that is to say it’s sexy as hell with a sleek black finish and a slim bezel. Like the G2, it appears to have the hardware buttons placed on the rear of the phone, which was a controversial move but let’s see how it turns out. Does the world want curvy, bendy smartphones?
GAMING: Batman Arkham Origins Game Announced for iOS and Android
Game developer NetherRealm Studios is working on a free-to-play version of Batman: Arkham Origins for iOS and Android. The iOS version is set to come out during the main console game launch window with an Android one following around the holidays.
This mobile game will pit the iconic hero Batman against the various villains of Gotham City featured in the Arkham storyline from the comics. As you defeat each foe you will be rewarded with new Batsuits as well as in-game currency and other assorted rewards.
If you play on your console as well, you can register with your Warner Bros. ID account to unlock bonus content, which is well worth doing. It’s also good to see that this will be a free-to-play title as some previous releases have cost £4-5. Who doesn’t want to be Batman for free?!
James is a freelance technology and science writer from Bucks.
His interests range from gadgets and apps to movies and gaming, really anything geeky!
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