Take the 3D sensor inside the Microsoft Kinect, shrink it down to a tenth of its original size and add a bunch of mobile capabilities, and you have yourself PrimeSense's latest conquest, better known as Capri. The company, which is the brains behind the Kinect, has been openly working on bringing a tiny-yet-advanced 3D experience to tablets, televisions and smartphones for quite some time now. And it's proud enough of its progress so far that it's willing to give some real-life demonstrations to developers attending Google I/O. You may not see Capri embedded on the PCB of your portable gadget anytime soon -- at least, not until PrimeSense winds up wooing the pants off a lucky OEM or two -- so in the meantime, the company has connected the sensor board to the Nexus 10 via micro-USB.
Unlike the Kinect, however, PrimeSense doesn't think gestures will play a significant role in how we use Capri to interact with our gadgets. Rather, it seems to be more focused on 3D-based use case scenarios, many of which haven't even been thought up yet. As you'll see in the video below, we were shown an AR game that takes the environment around you -- walls, furniture and other elements -- and uses them as restrictions, just as much as they would be in real life. In another app, Capri snapped a three-dimension shot of an object on the table in front of us, captured its measurements and let us export that image to another device or even a 3D printer. In many respects, PrimeSense appears to be taking the same strategy Google does with Glass: get developers excited about the tech in the hopes they'll come up with clever uses for it. And while the company isn't ready to put Capri in their hands yet, the SDK is up for grabs, and I/O is no doubt an ideal place to build excitement for it. If you're looking for more info, we have a gallery, video and press release below, and you'll find the SDK at the More Coverage link.
There are plenty of choices to meet your mobile mapping needs, from feature-rich offerings from big names like Google, Apple and Nokia to crowd-sourced services like Waze. Telenav's Scout app falls somewhere in between, and today the company announced that it'll get both 3D buildings and landmarks and crowd-sourced traffic reporting (backed by the Open Street Map database) later this year. Graphically, Scout in 3D looks similar to Google Maps and will initially be available for major metro areas in the US.
As for traffic reporting, Telenav will be asking its 34 million subscribers to report accidents and traffic jams, and will update its database in real-time. That means that as road conditions change, Scout'll suggest faster alternate route options to get you from point A to point B hassle-free. No word exactly when these new capabilities will make it to users, but when they do arrive later this year, both premium and free users will get 'em. In the meantime, check out the video of the new 3D maps in action after the break.
Android just gained another go-to for benchmarking. After failing to hit the 2012 mark for its Android-specific performance software, Futuremark's finally delivering on its promise and making 3DMark available today on Google Play. Typically used as a PC benchmarking tool, the free-to-download app now lets users catalog and compare performance across Windows and Android devices -- iOS and WinRT versions are still listed as "coming soon." There are a few caveats to use, though, as the application requires a smartphone or tablet running Android 3.1 or higher, 300MB of storage space, a minimum of 1GB RAM and needs to play nice with OpenGL ES 2.0 (which is about 90 percent of all Android devices, according to Google). Who knows? It could even find a permanent place in our own Android reviews soon. Only time and testing will tell -- check after the break for a video preview of what's in store.
Via: Xperia blog
We've come across a number of DLP-based pico projectors over the years and while these products are getting smaller, brighter and higher resolution, it's the integration with other devices that's really captured our imagination. Samsung's Galaxy Beam, which we reviewed last year, merges a 15-lumen nHD (640x360) DLP-based pico projector with a Galaxy S Advance. More recently at CES 2013, Texas Instruments announced its new Tilt & Roll Pixel chip architecture and demoed a handful of other DLP-equipped products live on our stage, including 3M's Streaming Projector and Smart Devices' U7 tablet.
Gallery: Texas Instruments DLP tech hands-on
Gallery: SmartDevices U7 tablet hands-on
The company recently invited us to play with some of these devices and to show us other applications in areas such as 3D printing, 3D scanning, optical research, medical imaging and even automotive. Some of this DLP-equipped tech, like the Interactive Center Console, shows where we're headed in the near future -- other products, like Christie's VeinViewer Flex, exist today but remind us of something right out of science-fiction. Take a look at our galleries below, then join us after the break for our hands-on video and more info on these devices.
Yes, finally, you can buy a Nintendo 3DS with dragons on it. Today is the day. Well, not quite -- February 4th is the actual day, which is also the day that Fire Emblem Awakening launches on Nintendo's latest portable console. The dragon-emblazoned 3DS is just one small part of the package, as you'll also snag a 4GB SD memory card and the game itself pre-installed on said 3DS. Altogether, the whole package runs just $199, for a savings of approximately $10. It's no Pokémon-themed 3DS, but it'll do, we suppose. Take an even closer look at the limited edition 3DS just below the break.
20/11/2012 - Visualized: a tour of Ben Heck's lab (video)
We've been following Ben Heck since the days of the Atari 800 laptop, so we jumped at the chance to take a look at the modder extraordinaire's shop in Madison, WI. As expected, the place is jam-packed with industrial tools, 3D printers and half-finished pinball machines. Check out where the magic happens below -- and as a bonus, Heck takes us on a tour of his work-in-progress Ghost Squad pinball machine.
Gallery: Visualized: a tour of Ben Heck's lab
You'll likely miss 3D Robotics on first pass. The company's San Diego R&D facility is headquartered in an unassuming building amongst similarly nondescript offices in a maze of a business park. Enter through the back and you'll find yourself in the middle of a small manufacturing assembly, where industrial Pick and Place machines buzz loudly and a handful of women are QAing finished product. Until earlier this month, the site was mostly off the radar, save for a devoted group of online enthusiasts. Then, Wired editor-in-chief Chris Anderson announced he was leaving the magazine in order to head up the company.
Anderson's off grabbing lunch as we arrive -- like us, just off a flight from the East Coast for a brief visit before jumping on yet another plane. He's in transition at the moment, as the head of both Wired and 3D Robotics, trying out his keycard for the first time as we set up our film equipment to interview the newly minted executive for an upcoming Engadget Show segment. Anderson's ties to the company go back to its inception, however, co-founding 3D Robotics with Jordi Muñoz, a 19-year-old living in Tijuana when the two first met through Anderson's DIY Drones online community.
Filed under: Robots
The potential for home 3D printing has regularly been limited by size; even MakerBot's Replicator 2 can only go so far in matching our ambitions. Solidoodle sees that deficit as a chance to make its name in a still very young industry. Its new Solidoodle 3 printer covers an extra two inches in every dimension than the Solidoodle 2, doubling the printable area to an extra-large 512 cubic inches. The 8-inch by 8-inch by 8-inch space isn't as long as what's inside the MakerBot challenger, but it's larger overall and improves on Solidoodle-built ancestors with a newer spool that cuts back on tangles in the plastic filament. Should any projects be too big for existing 3D printers' britches, the Solidoodle 3 is up for pre-order today at a size-appropriate $799. Do brace for a long wait, however: at 8-10 weeks before shipping, the company doesn't expect any deliveries until January.
Filed under: Peripherals
Just because Nintendo is focusing its energy on the Wii U launch doesn't preclude a sweet deal or two in portable gaming. Starting November 23rd, the company is bundling Super Mario 3D Land with Flame Red 3DS models at the same $170 price as the handheld by itself; it even comes pre-loaded on memory to save some of the hassles of physical media. You can be sure the limited-run console is all about goosing Black Friday sales at a time when Nintendo really needs the boost, but we don't think too many mobile gamers will mind if it means entering 3DS ownership with one of the platform's better games in hand.
LG Electronics has reported its earnings for Q3 2012, notching its third straight quarter of positive income with a net profit of 157 billion won ($138.57 million) and "solid" performances from its home theater and mobile businesses. Revenue is down from the same period last year, but seeing as it's actually making money this time around it's probably still reason to celebrate. On the mobile side of the aisle it reports an operating profit of $19.42 million with slightly higher sales than Q2, mostly thanks to those LTE smartphones it's been rolling out. Its home entertainment biz noted a rise in LCD sales, with 3D TVs and LED-lit models growing from last quarter in most markets. Looking towards the future it's obviously going all-in on the Optimus G (although our interests run towards the Nexus G that should debut next week), and also looks for its Ultra HD television to raise its standing as a premium brand. Check the press release after the break and PDF linked below for more numbers if that's your thing.
LG records a 'solid' $138.57 million net profit for Q3, keeps the positive trend going originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 24 Oct 2012 00:32:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | LG, Q3 2012 Results (PDF) | Email this | Comments
04/10/2012 - Pika? Yes, pika: this very yellow Pokemon-themed Nintendo 3DS XL is heading to Europe this year
The incredibly bright, somewhat terrifying yellow Nintendo 3DS XL that Japan got last month is now heading to Europe, according to a Europe-specific Nintendo Direct press conference this afternoon (via Joystiq). The Pikachu-themed 3DS doesn't have a solid release date just yet, but it's said to arrive at some point in 2012. A price also isn't included (though it costs ¥18,900/$238 in Japan), nor is it known if the device will be exclusive to one retailer -- in Japan, you can only buy a 3DS XL plastered with Pikachu's indifferent smirk from a Pokemon Center. Regardless, it's clearly super, super cute, and we'll have more definite information on it soon.
Does this mean it's coming to the US? Keep those poke-fingers crossed, trainers.
Pika? Yes, pika: this very yellow Pokemon-themed Nintendo 3DS XL is heading to Europe this year originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 04 Oct 2012 16:14:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink Joystiq | Nintendo Direct EU | Email this | Comments
16/08/2012 - MPEG drafts twice-as-efficient H.265 video standard, sees use in phones as soon as 2013
All of that squabbling over H.264 may be rendered moot in the near future. The Motion Picture Experts Group (better known as MPEG) has just let us know that it was quietly drafting a new video standard while everyone was on summer vacation last month: H.265, also called High Efficiency Video Coding, promises to squeeze video sizes with double the efficiency of H.264. As you might imagine, this could lead either to a much smaller video footprint for bandwidth-starved mobile users or a hike to image quality with the same size as before. Imagine fast-loading HD streaming on 4G, or cable TV without all the excess compression, and you've got the idea. Ericsson Research visual technology lead Per Fröjdh anticipates H.265 coming as soon as 2013, when our smartphones and tablets are most likely to play it first. TV and other areas might have to wait, although Fröjdh is offering a consolation prize -- he's teasing a separate MPEG project that could give us glasses-free, compressed 3D video as a standard by 2014.
MPEG drafts twice-as-efficient H.265 video standard, sees use in phones as soon as 2013 originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 15 Aug 2012 21:46:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | 9to5 Mac | Email this | Comments
Almost every day it seems like folks are finding a way to add to the number of practical uses for 3D printers. What was once a hobbyist's dream gadget is now being used to produce faux arteries for lab-grown tissue and Magic Arms. As the pricey peripherals work their way into the mainstream, are they soon to be found in most homes? That's the quandary we tackle in this edition of our weekly tablet mag as Brian Heater spends some quality time with the MakerBot Replicator at Engadget's NYC Headquarters. Not really into $2,000 output devices? No sweat. The Meizu MX 4-core, Toshiba U845W and Parrot Zik headphones all get the proper review treatment. "Hands-on" visits SIGGRAPH, "Weekly Stat" examines the shortcomings of our handsets, "Reaction Time" discusses THQ, "IRL" packs in three more of our gadget confessions and GameStop CEO Paul Raines admits his affinity for Jelly Bean in this week's Q&A. Go on and usher in the weekend by hitting up your download link of choice down below.
Filed under: Announcements
Distro Issue 52: Does the MakerBot Replicator signal the dawn of in-home 3D printing? originally appeared on Engadget on Fri, 10 Aug 2012 09:30:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | iTunes, Google Play | Email this | Comments
10/08/2012 - Google Earth adds detailed 3D imagery for Denver and Seattle, might not render the local Starbucks
Google only launched detailed 3D maps in Google Earth for a handful of cities, but it's branching out to provide that extra dimension to a wider swath of the public. Today, it's Denver and Seattle: Android and iOS app users can immediately see the dense, textured 3D City View in their respective western cities. The updates probably won't let Seattle residents spot their hometown coffee brand without going into Street View, but it will let them thread the eye of the Space Needle while their friends in Denver spin past the State Capitol. We can't help but think that Google also enjoys offering some Microsoft staffers a little taste of what they're missing.
Google Earth adds detailed 3D imagery for Denver and Seattle, might not render the local Starbucks originally appeared on Engadget on Fri, 10 Aug 2012 02:13:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink The Next Web | Google Lat Long Blog | Email this | Comments
A few weeks ago we had the chance to line up some of LG's current handsets -- the Optimus L7, Optimus 4X HD, Optimus Vu and Optimus 3D Max -- for a little photo shoot. While we only had access the the 3D Max for a short time, we ended up reviewing the other three. There's a bit a of something for everyone here -- some Ice Cream Sandwich and some Gingerbread, some mid-range hardware and some hi-end style, some phablet and some 3D. Check out the
pr0n family album in the gallery below.
Gallery: LG Optimus family
Visualized: LG's Optimus L7, 4X HD, Vu and 3D Max pose for family album originally appeared on Engadget on Sun, 05 Aug 2012 09:15:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | | Email this | Comments
25/07/2012 - LG Q2 2012 earnings show a loss on cellphones, but higher profits overall thanks to home theater
LG has released its earnings statement for the Q2 2012 period, the claim of "turning a corner" in Q1 has just managed to hold up as it registered net profits of $138 million, up 46 percent from the same period last year. Revenues, while higher than Q1, were actually down from last year and blamed on declines in featurephone sales and slow sales of IT products. The mobile division also struggled after a strong Q1 and took an operating loss, however the positive takeaways are a rising percentage of smartphone shipments and plans to launch new LTE-connected models in North America (we've spotted the likely Spectrum 2 for Verizon already), Europe and Asia later this year. The good news for the home theater segment continued however, with an operating profit of more than double last year at $187.5 million despite slightly lower sales due to an increase in sales of premium products like its Cinema 3D HDTVs, which it expects to become the "top global seller" in the 3D segment. There's more details in the press release after the break or PDF linked below if you need more numbers.
LG Q2 2012 earnings show a loss on cellphones, but higher profits overall thanks to home theater originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 25 Jul 2012 00:36:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | LG 2Q 2012 Performance Results (PDF) | Email this | Comments
16/07/2012 - New Recce 3D map app offers location-based services and games, Sim City possibilities abound
The mapping scene has seen plenty of activity lately -- what with Apple ditching Google to launch its own service while the latter continues to layer on improvements such as better walking directions and more Street View coverage for its maps. Now a new app called "Recce" is trying to elbow its way into the conversation by using a free, searchable 3D mapping system that not only serves up location-based services but also location-based games. Named after military slang for "reconnaissance," Recce is the brainchild of former Psygnosis co-founder Ian Hetherington and Google engineering director Rian Liebenberg, who formed London-based developer eeGeo. The app works by pulling together a slew of data feeds from sources such as map providers and social networking services to provide an interactive 3D view of an area. It can also be used to update services like Twitter so your followers can know exactly where you were when you saw Justin Johnson, er, Bieber speeding away from the paparazzi in his chrome Fisker Karma. Do note that data is limited to central London at the moment, though San Francisco and New York are slated to get their 3D closeup next.
New Recce 3D map app offers location-based services and games, Sim City possibilities abound originally appeared on Engadget on Mon, 16 Jul 2012 09:04:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | TechCrunch, iTunes | Email this | Comments
06/06/2012 - Offline Google Maps to work on 'all devices with Android 2.2 or higher,' 3D compatibility less clear
We'd heard earlier that Google had "nothing to announce" in regard to Android compatibility with the newly-announced offline Maps support and 3D modeling, but look -- things change. We reached out to the company and urged 'em to dig a little deeper, only to have the following confirmed: "For offline Google Maps for Android, all devices with Android 2.2 (Froyo) and above will be supported." As for the 3D portion? "We'll have more details about device compatibility for 3D imagery on Google Earth for mobile at launch." After the event, we spotted a Googler using the 3D build on a Galaxy Nexus, so it's obvious that Android 4.0+ will be supported, but we have to assume that some of these older Froyo devices may simply lack the proper oomph needed to fly around the downtowns of [insert major metropolitan area here].
Offline Google Maps to work on 'all devices with Android 2.2 or higher,' 3D compatibility less clear originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 06 Jun 2012 17:49:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | | Email this | Comments
06/06/2012 - Google's Brian McClendon: 'committed' to bringing all of Maps' features to iOS, other platforms
There was a Google event today, but you'd hardly know it based on the Q&A session. Question and question was hurled at Brian McClendon -- Vice President of Engineering for Google Maps -- surrounding Apple. With discussion around Apple's desire to introduce a mapping system of its own in iOS 6 to unseat Google from its preloaded app selection, Peter fielded lots of inquiries on the matter. He did an admirable job of dodging the obviously asinine bits, but continued to impress upon the crowd that Google itself was "committed" to bringing all of the features in Maps -- 3D, offline, turn-by-turn, etc. -- to iOS and other platforms.
That was largely in response to a question as to why Google Maps Navigation for Android was so superior to Maps on iOS, but honestly, it's hard to know where the truth sits. We've heard that politics have kept the two sides from coming to terms, but it's pretty clear that Google's more than happy to bring its world-class mapping platform to other mobile operating systems... so long as terms are agreeable, naturally. The good news is that 3D maps will be coming to Android and iOS "in the coming weeks," which makes one wonder if iOS 6 will be available for some time. As for offline on iOS? Your guess is as good as ours, but it sure sounds as if the ball's in Apple's court. Can't we just all play nice, guys?
Relive the memories in our liveblog... right here!
Google's Brian McClendon: 'committed' to bringing all of Maps' features to iOS, other platforms originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 06 Jun 2012 13:54:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | | Email this | Comments
Some phone makers carve their own path, others ride on their coattails. Konka, however, somehow carves its own coattails, and we admire the ingenuity. The Shenzhen-based mobile maker, known for its familiar designs and logo font, has just announced that, going forward, its smartphones will be using the 3D Kanzi UI from Rightware -- as formally seen on ZTE handsets. So does this complete the trifecta of design flattery? The Kanzi interface can be seen in action in the video after the break, but if you weren't sure how 3D it was, then there's a PR after that too, which might mention it. Just a few times.
Konka tries to differentiate with familiar-looking Kanzi 3D UI originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 06 Jun 2012 06:23:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | | Email this | Comments
26/05/2012 - Kanzi: ZTE's 3D UX for ICS handsets
To skin or not to skin? That's hardly ever a question for Android OEMs. And, in the case of some Chinese manufacturers, that mark of software differentiation comes in the form of three dimensions. We've already seen Huawei trot out its (optional) 3D UX for the Ascend P line, and now it appears ZTE's ready to follow suit with a custom interface powered by Rightware. The Kanzi UI, as it's called, will come pre-loaded on all of the company's smartphones currently shipping with Ice Cream Sandwich, treating users to a 3D homescreen experience and giving developers a unified platform to port their designs. It's good news if you're a fan of that overlaid visual gimmickry, but we much prefer our Google desserts vanilla and without any toppings. Hit up the break to check out the official presser.Permalink MobileMag | | Email this | Comments
LG has released its Q1 2012 numbers, and there's plenty of good news to go around, with TV profits that nearly doubled and profit from cellphones for the second quarter in a row following six straight quarters of losses. Despite We'll dig through the numbers in a moment, check the press release after the break for more details.
LG's Q1 2012 earnings show greater profits on strong TV, phone sales originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 25 Apr 2012 01:11:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | | Email this | Comments
For those that still keen to dabble with the world of 3D we've got some good and some bad news. While the Optimus 3D Max has made its first arrival in Europe, launching in Germany today, it looks like the phone won't be docking at British ports. A spokesperson at LG told us there were currently no plans to bring the device across to the UK, although its L-style series and the quad-core flagship, the Optimus 4X HD, look set to receive wider adoption. The Optimus 3D Max is the brutally carb-free version of LG's original 3D phone, now lighter and thinner but still gnawing on last year's Android Gingerbread. Pricing hasn't been announced for Germany, but LG tells us that it will be on the premium end of the smartphone scale, with pricing dependent on carriers. You get the full view of the hardware and its three-dimensional chops in the press release after the break. Active shutter glasses not required.
LG Optimus 3D Max launches in Europe, won't be coming to the UK originally appeared on Engadget on Mon, 23 Apr 2012 06:05:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | | Email this | Comments
It's not like we're gonna argue with Sprint's rationale, but the EVO 3D has met its end at the Now Network. Visitors to the carrier's online store will notice that the gee-whiz smartphone is no longer available for sale, and Sprint reps have confirmed to us that it's not coming back. Those who insist on owning an EVO 3D will be glad to know that the handset is still available at Sprint's retail outlets, but according to the carrier, quantities are rather limited. Given a phone that debuted less than a year ago, its abrupt and unceremonious demise comes as a bit of a shock, but with the mighty EVO 4G LTE on the horizon, we can't blame the carrier one bit.
Sprint discontinues HTC EVO 3D online, limited quantities remain at retail stores originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 21 Apr 2012 11:53:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink Android Police | Sprint | Email this | Comments
Truth be told, we haven't been wildly impressed with the glasses-free 3D solutions we've seen to date, be it because of the limited viewing angles, unconvincing picture or lack of availability here in the US. That could soon change, however, if Dolby's version of the three-dimensional experience makes its way to a production-ready television set. Best known for its audio technologies, the company just launched its own 3D standard in cooperation with Philips, called Dolby 3D. The platform-agnostic solution is far from ready to make its way into your living room, but it's conceptually sound, and the prototype 4K 3D TV and mobile versions being demonstrated at Dolby's NAB booth make us hopeful for the future. As with all displays -- especially those that support 3D -- you'll really need to see to believe, but we had an opportunity to do just that, and walked away very impressed.
The 56-inch 4K prototype display is viewable from nearly any angle, with 24 different viewpoints, though you'll really need to be front and center for the greatest 3D effect. Side viewing is certainly possible; you'll just sacrifice some depth in the process. Even from the front, 3D appears slightly muted compared to what we've seen with passive- and active-glasses equivalents, though we can't say that we mind much, considering that the image is still dramatic enough when you need it to be, such as when displaying scenes with significant depth. The company was also demonstrating Dolby 3D on an HTC Evo 3D along with a nondescript tablet, where an on-screen slider lets you dim the three-dimensional intensity just as you would adjust the volume, enabling you to customize the experience to suit your needs. Since Dolby 3D is merely a display standard, we won't be seeing any branded televisions or smartphones, though perhaps we'll see some third-party adaptations come CES 2013. Jump past the break to see it in action.
Dolby 3D on prototype 4K display and HTC Evo 3D hands-on (video) originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 18 Apr 2012 11:11:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | | Email this | Comments