Connected Objects Displays

H1 strives to be the #1 smart projector with 4K, Android support

A good home theater system can be costly when you factor in the TV and stereo system including speakers and an amplifier.

H1 is a portable, 3D full HD smart projector that features Harman Kardon 45mm dual unit stereo sound. The projector uses Texas Instruments DLP technology and its brightness is rated at 900 ANSI lumens for daytime or bright-light viewing. H1 is the latest LED projector from Chinese manufacturer XGIMI, and transforms any surface into a 300-inch screen.


Cinq makes it a cinch to add second computer screen

Adding a second screen to one’s laptop computer can come in extremely handy, whether working at home, an office or on the road. After all, it cuts down significantly on the need to toggle back and forth between multiple windows on a PC to find necessary information.

patent-claimedCinq is a portable, 13.3-inch HD (1600 x 900) monitor that connects via USB to a laptop or Intel-based tablet such as Microsoft’s Surface Pro. It mounts to the laptop in two steps: the user applies a clear vinyl Lid Rail Skin to the laptop lid, and then attaches the Lid Rail using a clamp.

Connected Objects Imaging

Onago drone follows and captures your finest moments on the go

For most extreme sports enthusiasts, recording their feats is a financial hassle. Outside of expensive camera systems, bulky drones, and helicopter rentals, the market for portable, affordable high-definition recording is woefully lacking. GoPro has positioned their cameras as an inexpensive solution, but only limited angles are available with it.

To address the need, ARI’s Onago is an intelligent, auto-follow drone equipped with a gimbal that can mount a GoPro. With this set up, anyone can dive into multi-angle video to record their aerial shenanigans. Onago is a beast in the air, as well, flying as high as 3000ft with a top speed of 35mph. To control it, the product can be synced to an iOS or Android smartphone to enable things like one touch take-off and return.


Comfortably watch video on your wrist with the Blu smartwatch/smartphone hybrid

Most smartwatches on the market look fairly similar, with screens typically too small to be used for viewing items like video or mapping directions.

patent-claimedThe makers of Blu have created a bendable and wearable smartphone/smartwatch that’s worn like a bangle around the wrist. The device features a flexible 5-inch by 2-inch HD OLED display capable of covering a user’s full wrist. With such a design, the device is able to incorporate an overlapping clasp that allows the Blu to fit users with wrist circumferences ranging from 5.5 inches to 8.5 inches.

The waterproof Blu also features an invisible 360-degree speaker system which emits sound from all around the wrist. Another notable feature of the device’s futuristic design is a light bar which can be incorporated into application functions for games, social media apps, and even standard mobile phone notifications. Adding a dash of customization, the light bar’s colors can be user-adjusted. Blu will cost $799 when it ships in May and its maker is hoping to raise $600,000 AUD (~$468,700 USD).

Blu has several unique features that separate it from the growing smartphone pack and its distinctive look will likely appeal to many consumers. That said, its industrial design may prove to be off-putting to many, especially those who don’t want something so large around their wrists.

Cell Phone Accessories Displays

LIBERCOM152 is the klunky way to turn your iPhone into an iPad

The phablets that have rapidly become the norm may be perfect for the morning commute or occasional road trip, but at home but there’s nothing like a full-sized display to display content as brilliantly as it deserves to be, and completely capture attention as a result.

While it doesn’t measure up to an HDTV or even most desktop PC screens, the 9.7- inch, full HD LIBERCOM152 lets consumers experience all their phone apps on a tablet-sized display. The full capacitive touch screen is primarily designed as a smartphone complement, but can connect to a PC, Mac, or even Rapsberry Pi to facilitate video calls, gaming, and Web browsing. Utilizing a a dual charging and micro-HDMI display cable reduces lag in the screen so that it can better support real-time mirroring. Early birds can grab their own LIBERCOM152 for up to $200 off the $350 retail price, with a ship date of June 2015 expected. The campaign seks $80,000.

The LIBERCOM152’s oozes retro charm with its SNES-inspired design that even includes a game controller. However, for what it costs, most users would e served better by a sleeker iPad or other tablet as it lacks the integration of ASUS’ Padfone X.

Automotive Connected Objects Imaging Safety

CarVi driving assistant lets you keep more eyes on the road

editors-choiceMany folks have been tempted by the high-tech safety features in newer cars, but wish there was a way to get them into their existing vehicles economically.

That is the goal of the makers of CarVi, a small, circular black driving assistance device that attaches easily via a bracket onto the windshield of just about any car. The device adds an extra set of eyes, monitoring a driver’s position in a lane and the location of the car in front of it. CarVi warns drivers if they are too close to the car in front, and if it senses any potential trouble will issue audible and visual warnings.

The device comes equipped with a camera capturing 720p HD video that CarVi analyzes in real time. Owners can set it to record 40-second to one-minute video onto a memory card whenever certain events occur, such as tailgating incidents. The user can then transfer that video to an Android or iOS smartphone for viewing later. Alternatively, CarVi can function as a full-time recorder if the driver desires. CarVi can also provide suggestions via the accompanying app on how to improve driver skills after the car is turned off. CarVi will cost $299 when it ships in August. Its makers are hoping to raise $100,000 by March 20.

The device holds some promise, especially for elderly drivers and the parents of new drivers. But similar products, such as Truvolo and Zubie, have already offered the same kind of functionality with varying degrees of success. While the warnings could indeed help drivers avoid accidents, it remains to be seen if many drivers will actually be willing to hear tips about how to improve their driving once they turn the engine off.


Connected Objects Kids/Babies

Evoz monitors babies, captures special moments

There are many devices on the market that monitor babies, but few of them offer multiple functions, such as the ability to play lullabies, serve as a nightlight, and capture photos of special moments.

Evoz is a smart baby monitor that works in conjunction with an app for mobile devices, and alerts parents if there are any issues with the baby. Initial support is for Android and iOS devices, but its maker is working on compatibility with other unspecified mobile platforms. It features a wide-angle, Wi-Fi-enabled, 720p HD video camera, so parents can see everything that is going on in the baby’s room from the screen of their mobile device. The monitor has eight infrared LEDs partially hidden behind the black circle around the lens, which enables a 12 to 16-foot range for night vision video.

The device’s maker developed data mining algorithms to look for patterns in the baby data that experts have indicated are meaningful. That information is stored and can be accessed by parents at any time. As an example, if a baby is older than six months, and daytime naps are consistently less than 45 minutes, parent are presented with a step-by-step guide to teach them how to increase nap times. The device’s makers worked with therapist Kim West, the “Sleep Lady,” for more than two years to understand data trends and provide parents with information and expertise.

Evoz holds a lot of promise, offering a collection of features that competing devices on the market just can’t match. In addition to access to videos in which West offers advice, parents who use Evoz will get access to sleep and parenting experts that West trained and certified.

Evoz will ship in April of this year to those who back $169. Its maker set a goal of raising $25,000 by March 17.

Connected Objects Displays

Immersis provides immersive gaming without the bulky headset

editors-choiceOne huge knock against virtual reality devices like the Oculus Rift is that they require users to wear bulky headsets to experience their immersive effects. The Immersis projector provides a similar kind of immersive experience for interactive gaming and other video viewing, but doesn’t require any headsets.

The device instead projects panoramic video images onto the user’s wall, enabling multiple players or movie watchers to get the same kind of effect as a virtual reality headset. The first version of Immersis uses technology based on real-time adaptation of an image to fit the shape and size of whatever room the user is in. The device is easy to set up and use. The projection technology is compatible with all existing display technologies currently on the market, either with conventional lamps, LEDs or lasers. The image format will be at least full HD (1920×1080).

Connected to a computer, Immersis can project any kind of video content at 180 degrees. If the content is two-dimensional, the projection is flat. If the content is panoramic, 180 degrees, videogames or 3D applications, the projection will be at 180 degrees. A TV, monitor or tablet can be integrated into the projection, either to benefit from the higher resolution or for a specific interaction on one of the screens. Existing game controllers can be used with the device. Backers who pledge $1,000 as part of an early bird offer will get the system when it ships in October. Immersis is looking to raise $100,000 on Kickstarter.

The system is certainly unique and holds some promise. While its degree of immersion is likely not quite in the same ballpark as what is provided by the Oculus Rift, it may be good enough for some people. But it will likely only appeal to a very niche consumer base–namely hardcore gamers. The required configuration could further turn off some other consumers.

Smart Home

iCamPRO robot tracks intruders, keeps eyes on them everywhere

The home security camera market is crowded with devices, but consumers tend to get what they pay for. For example, low-cost models tend to be stationary, lacking the ability to track moving objects.

Amsterdam company Amaryllo calls its iCamPRO FHD (full high definition) the first affordable, robotic camera that can see, hear, sense and automatically track moving objects. Algorithms were designed to make sure that the camera always keeps objects in the middle of the viewing area.  When an object starts to move away from the pixels in the middle of the viewing area, the camera tracks the object until it’s in the middle again. If two people are in the tracking area, the algorithm is designed to follow the first object detected until it stops moving.

The HD camera stands just over 3 inches tall and is powered by a high-speed central processing unit with a multi-sensor network. The iCamPRO features multiple motion sensors that always remain on, and it can see objects even in a dimly-lit environment.

Real-time object tracking like this is costly and has tended to only be available in military or professional surveillance systems in the past. The company already passed its goal of raising $1,000. Indiegogo backers can get either a white or black iCamPRO for $149 in May if they order now. That’s half the price that Amaryllo plans to charge at retail.

The camera offers a lot of promise and seems like an especially good deal at $149. But whether many consumers who are content with a cheaper Dropcam or Butterfleye will pay considerably more for an iCamPRO remains to be seen.

Imaging Video

One-touch Flagg’it makes editing sporting highlights less of drag

Over the last few years, sports have embraced action cameras as a way to capture those incredible moments that are often missed to later share with others. Their usually small sizes offer high-quality HD recording options, but their downside lies in having to manually turn them on and off which ultimately takes the focus off the action.

Flagg’it is a wearable button that functions as an instant marker for any and all cameras someone may have. A single button press marks a video track with a flag, and the included Flagg’it software allows users to import their video with the attached flags. Having these markers lets users more easily edit their video without having to review the entire thing for notable moments, a process that can easily eat up so much time.

Those behind Flagg’it are banking on the fact that it’s easier to begin the editing process in the moment rather than back at a computer, so they’ve made it easy to do so. The device doesn’t function through Bluetooth or Wi-Fi but rather emits an audio signal which it uses to sync instead, allowing Flagg’it to work with any camera at any distance. And its 50 hours or more of battery life relieves batteries worries, too. A Flagg’it device goes for $69, and is expected to ship July 2015 if the campaign raises $50,000.

What Flagg’it does, it does very well. Sports enthusiasts will no doubt absolutely love the ability to set up flags on their recorded video in real time, so its functionality will be met with warm welcome. It’s also shock, dust, and shock resistant, but even then it isn’t certain Flagg’it will be able to truly withstand the punishment it surely will receive.