Wearables.com community review of Pebble Time: A simple smartwatch you’ll love to wear
Aug31

Wearables.com community review of Pebble Time: A simple smartwatch you’ll love to wear

Editor’s note: Each month, we put a device directly in our community members’ hands. In July, Erick Adame gave the Pebble Time a thorough and thoughtful review. Stay tuned to see what devices we’re giving away next, and read the user review below.  Well, after a week spent reviewing the device, I’ll say that the Pebble Time still leads in the smartwatch market. The design is a huge improvement from the original Pebble and now makes wearing a Pebble on your wrist look stylish. Though the watch doesn’t have the best screen or any time of cutting edge technology, but it’s still a damn good watch. And it’s just that — a watch. It tells the time all of the time. It may seem like a silly thing to say, but it’s a huge advantage to be able to look at your smartwatch in any situation and easily determine what time it is. Not to be forgotten, the Pebble Time now makes receiving notifications fun thanks to the new color animations and the color e-paper display. And, last but not least, the Timeline is a neat new feature with the potential to grow into something more robust. Overall, the design, the up-to-7 days of battery life, and the user experience make the Pebble Time a watch that I not only love but brag about to my family and friends. I gave it an average score of 4.2 of 5 — here’s why.  The good Battery Life is great (at least 3 to 4 days) Very lightweight and comfortable to Wear Fun user interface with cute animations Developers are constantly making this watch better The bad The screen can seem very dim at times The bezel becomes scratched easily The gap under the glass creates weird shadows on the screen Limited compatibility with iPhone Unboxing experience – 4 I received a Kickstarter edition Pebble Time. Very much like the watch, the unboxing was fun and cute-sy. There is a zipper-like tab to open the box, and everything was neatly placed inside. With this edition, you get the watch, a charging cable, some brief instructions, and a few stickers. The retail version of the Pebble Time, however, has a beautiful box with a clear plastic display window that shows off the Pebble Time inside. Battery life – 4 Battery life is one of the biggest draws of the Pebble Time. Pebble claims up to 7 days, but I seemed to get only get about 3 during the week-long review process. This is probably because my testing the many features the watch has to offer. I also did extend the length of time the screen stays illuminated...

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New to Wearables.com: FOVE VR!
Aug21

New to Wearables.com: FOVE VR!

Our goal is to add all the latest and greatest wearable tech to our site so that you can easily find what’s out there and what works for you! This week we added the FOVE virtual reality headset to our site:     FOVE VR is a newcomer to the VR space, and they are hot off the heels of their massively successful kickstarter campaign. The virtual reality startup raised over $480,000, nearly twice its original funding goal.     FOVE is the world’s first eye tracking virtual reality headset. The FOVE allows the users to immerse themself in worlds that react to their eyes and emotions, experience precision control at the speed of thought. The headset allows you to aim with your eyes, focus your vision, make eye contact, and move naturally. The FOVE uses two small form-factor infrared eye tracking systems to detect your eye to accuracy of less than 0.2 degrees. FOVE will be releasing a developers SDK for their...

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The best Google Cardboard apps for gaming to movie-watching and more
Aug13

The best Google Cardboard apps for gaming to movie-watching and more

For many, it just isn’t feasible to throw down a few hundred or thousand dollars for virtual reality devices like the Oculus Rift or Sony Project Morpheus. Thus, Google Cardboard is Google’s smart and savvy response to the high demand for VR headsets. The cardboard device is low-cost and designed so that the average VR enthusiast can assemble it themselves. By pairing your smartphone with any of the various Cardboard devices (Knox Labs, Dodo Case, and I Am Cardboard, to name a few), users can experience top mobile apps in an entirely different and affordable way. We’ve got the best Google Cardboard apps to try out with your cutting-edge headset. The best Google Cardboard apps for gaming Subway Surfing VR In this VR game, users must forgo regular public transportation due to the flooded subways of New York. Users must hop on a surfboard and maneuver their way through the tunnels without falling. By simply tilting your head to move, the game tracks your smartphone’s accelerometer to determine balance. Of the many games on Google, this one might make your neck hurt the next day. Zombie Shooter VR Another game set in the creepy, dark subways, but this time the tunnels are full of blood-thirsty zombies and creatures. Zombie Shooter VR is arguably one of the best of the free virtual reality games on Google Play due to its simplicity. Wherever you look, your weapon will automatically fire, and thankfully, the game gives you unlimited bullets just in case your eyes start to wander from the screen. Flappy for Cardboard Flappy Bird has gone down in history as one of the best mobile games (not to mention most addicting) we’ve seen in recent years. Everyone’s favorite game is back and better than ever for Google Cardboard. Now, users can play the game through the eyes of the flappy bird, using the headset trigger to jump through the pipes instead of having to bob your head constantly to fly. You’ll have to try the game for yourself to see if it’s just as addicting as its predecessor. The best Google Cardboard apps for entertainment Jack White: THIRD-D Jaunt Inc. teamed up with Third Man Records to create the ultimate concert experience. This app will let you watch Jack White perform hit songs like “Freedom at 21” and “Dead Leaves and the Dirty Ground,” all through your cardboard VR headset. The 360-degree footage as well stereoscopic 3D will change concert “going,” entirely. Glitcher VR The Glitchr VR app brings a new twist to the way we see reality. This application layers filters on your camera’s input, allowing for distortion, color change, etc. More impressively, by using the magnet switch, the...

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5 big-picture people to watch in wearables this August
Aug07

5 big-picture people to watch in wearables this August

This month’s picks are all involved with wearable technology, obviously, but they each have a little something extra. Whether it’s approaching wearables by creating community chapters across the country or by using them as a springboard for female involvement in a mostly male-dominated sphere, each of the players below see the “big picture” of the wearables revolution. And, most importantly, each are determined and forward-thinking enough to not be left behind. Tom Emrich, Founder of We Are Wearables Tom Emrich is the man behind We Are Wearables, an organization focused on bringing together members of the tech community to discuss and innovate within the wearable tech realm. Already boasting chapters in Toronto, Chicago, and Ottawa, the organization’s website states, “If you are a startup, entrepreneur, investor, brand, marketer, developer, designer or just an enthusiast come join the movement.” Emrich is on our list because he created the first — and larges — wearables organization of its kind. Meetups include presentations, panels, tech demos, and networking opportunities, and Emrich encourages any and all to start their own chapter in their city. It’s sort of a grassroots wearable tech movement, and that’s something we can always get behind. Sara Chipps, co-founder of Jewelbots Chipps is a computer programmer who partnered with Brooke Moreland and Maria Paula Saba to create Jewelbots, the “friendship bracelets for an iPhone era.” Essentially, Jewelbots give young girls the ability to program their bracelets to behave in certain ways when around their friends, like changing color and vibrating. But Chipps believes there to be an educational facet to Jewelbots. In 2010, she co-founded a nonprofit by the name of Girl Develop It!, an organization dedicated to getting females into coding. As an advocate of recruiting girls to STEM fields, Chipps believes Jewelbots to be a good first step in awakening that technology bug. The Kickstarter campaign ended on August 7, having reached over $166K (the initial goal was $30K) — and even Bill Nye supports it! We are eager to see how Chipps and her partner influence the wearable technology sphere, all while supporting girls and women everywhere. Paulo Ferreira dos Santos, Founder & CEO of Kinematix The Portugal-based entrepreneur set out to develop wearable tech capable of extracting detailed data from human movement during daily and routine activities. Founded in 2007, the aim of Kinematix is to take wearable tech to the next level; that is, “to build the next generation of wearables, which would provide more than just information: movement knowledge.” That is precisely what Tune, the company’s newest wearable device, aims to do. Composed of sensor-equipped insoles to be placed in your running shoes, the device measures a startling array of paramaters (footstrike, ground-contact time, heel-contact time, etc.). Kinematix takes simple quantifying stats like step...

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Wearables.com community review: The best and worst of the Runtastic Orbit
Jul30

Wearables.com community review: The best and worst of the Runtastic Orbit

In May, we gave away a Runtastic Orbit to Wearables.com community Michael Houle in exchange for a user review. Check out his thoughts on the device below (And be sure to enter to win our latest giveaway: the Pebble Time!). Top 4 pros: 1) Outstanding water resistance, up to to 300 feet 2) The display is simple, easy to glean stats from 3) Pretty good battery life 4) Ease of use with Runtastic Apps Top 4 cons: 1) USB charging cable is too short 2) Device is sensitive to road bumps when worn while driving 3) A little pricey considering how simple the device is 4) The second display for RuntasticPro is buggy at times   Overall score: 4.3 of 5 Overall the Runtastic Orbit is great — when used in conjunction with Runtastic apps. I found the device easy to setup, easy to use, comfortable to wear, and pretty accurate with the daily readings. The Runtastic Orbit is not as great if used as a standalone device. This is due to the inability to input your height, weight, age, and gender on the device, which can only be done through the apps. The charging cable is very small and does not come with a wall plug, meaning you can only charge it at a computer (unless you go out and buy a USB adapter). The Orbit did drain my phone’s battery (a Samsung Galaxy S5 Active) quicker than normal due to the use of Bluetooth for syncing the Orbit to the app. The app will automatically turn the phone’s Bluetooth on. My personal workaround was to turn off the RuntasticMe app’s ability to automatically turn on the phone’s Bluetooth when opened.  Instead, I only turned the bluetooth on when I wanted to sync the device to the app. The screen can be difficult to read in direct sunlight. Be aware that the device can pick up the vibrations of bumps when driving and add unnecessary steps to your daily goal. My fix was to put the Orbit in sleep mode when driving long distances. And finally, I did not use the device to track my sleep after a few days of reviewing the sleep mode of the device. With all of the above taken into account, however, the Orbit is still a great fitness tracker for walking and running. Battery life: 4 The battery worked better than expected. The manual states it last 5 to 7 days, but at the 7 day mark I still had just under a quarter of the batter life left. How long it lasts depends how many times a day you use the display and how often you sync the device with the RuntasticMe app,...

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