Connected Objects Imaging Television

Hello camera makes it easy to say chat with people on your TV

Videoconferencing is a pretty good way to communicate with fellow workers and business clients without having to be in the same room together. But existing solutions can be more complicated to use than the average person would like.

Hello is a voice-controlled videoconferencing camera that easily connects to a TV via HDMI. It offers wireless screen sharing and live broadcasting capabilities, as well as security surveillance with motion detection.


Ockel Sirius B shrinks a PC into your palm

Some folks would just love to take their computer with them wherever they go, especially if they need it for work. But they just hate having to schlep such a large device around with them, even if it’s just a laptop.

Ockel Sirius B is an updated version of the Sirius B pocket PC from Ockel Computers. It’s a Windows PC with the power of a desktop computer, but the lightness and size of a smartphone that allows it to fit in one’s pocket. It comes in a choice of white or black housing with aluminum edges. The computer features a fan-free design, allowing it to operate silently. Other features include HDMI 1.4 output, an Intel processor, 2 USB ports, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0, a microSD memory card slot and up to 4 GB of RAM.


AfterMaster TV improves the quality of your TV audio

Audio quality continues to be the weakest link in the TV viewing experience for many people. That has only been enhanced by the dominance of flat-panel TVs, which typically can’t fit quality speakers inside due to their thin designs. Even many sound bars and the best multi-channel speakers can overcome such issues as sudden changes in audio levels.

patent-claimedAfterMaster TV is designed to overcome such problems. It’s a small, set-top device that gets hooked up via HDMI cables to a TV and an audio/video source including a cable or satellite box. The device uses patent-pending technology originally developed for the music industry, according to its Kickstarter campaign. It features a proprietary Digital Signal Processing chip, co-developed with ON Semiconductor, that can master and remaster audio to professional standards in real-time and, unlike other audio enhancement technologies, makes any audio source sound much better throughout its entire frequency range.


Sirius B makes a pocketable PC the star of you mobile world

As powerful as smartphones and tablets have become, they’re still nowhere near desktop class. So for all the situations where desktops are necessary, the smartphone is a decent stopgap, although it  inexplicably can’t perform many of the same functions as well are they desk-bound counterparts.

The Sirius B combines some pretty decent technical specifications— an Intel Atom Bay Trail quad-core processor with 2GB of RAM, 2 USB ports, HDMI 1.4 out, 32GB of flash storage, dual band Wi-Fi, a 3.5mm audio jack, and Bluetooth connectivity—all in a slim, smartphone-esque design that comes in at just 4.2oz.

Music Television

Electric Jukebox streaming device delivers tunes from the TV

The modern age has gotten rid of that communal feeling inherent in the jukebox, a cultural relic rarely experienced and as a result underappreciated. Nowadays, music lives on smart devices which can make the act of listening to music a singular one.

The team behind the Electric Jukebox is eager to tap into the spirit of yesteryear with their plug-and-play music streaming device. By requiring only an HDMI-enabled television and broadband connection, Electric Jukebox is hoping to make the idea of accessing absolutely any song at a moment’s notice a reality — no smartphone or laptop necessary.


Backerjack Podcast #24: Security, Safety and Screens That Show It All

In Episode 24 of the Backerjack Podcast, Steve and Ross check out some of the latest products seeking funds and preorders, including:

  • Angee, a hybrid home monitoring system that can capture video in any direction.
  • Skreens, a small TV add-on that lets multiple vide sources go up on the TV at the same time..

We also mentioned a few other products we wished we had more time for, including the Holapex hologram visualizer.

Download the episode or listen below, subscribe via iTunes or RSS, and subscribe to the Backerjack Daily Digest to make sure you catch all the gadgets we’re covering. Also check out Steve’s great work on Apple World Today!


Skreens puts multiple video sources on the screen at once

Hulu, Nerflix, Twitter, Xbox One. There’s so much worth watching and so few big screens in the living room. Unfortunately, TVs can normally display only one.

The makers of Skreens seek to change that limitation. The device looks like any number of devices that let you switch between different HDMI sources, but can display those sourced on the TV at the same time. So, for example, one family member can play a videogame with the sound off while someone else catches up on a DVR recording. Or a sports fan can keep tabs on a game while catching the Twitter buzz about it.

Tech Accessories

Cusby releases the potential of USB-C, one module at a time

One day, USB-C — the reversible connector that represents the first change the USB “A” port since its inception — will be everywhere. In addition to everything older USB connectors can do, it can accommodate video connections and power. However, in their eagerness to take advantage of the port’s great versatility, laptop purveyors such as Apple (with its new MacBook) and Google (with the Chromebook Pixel 2) have  offered a limited number of ports with few choices for adapters.

Cusby takes a modular approach to releasing the potential of the USB-C connector. It consists of a number of modular components that allow those with USB-C ports to break out dedicated connectors with tile-like units that are about 1.6″ square. These include the more traditional USB-A, HDMI, and one (or more) USB-C ports.


Raspberry Pi cleans up by donning the PiKasa

Raspberry Pi devices are super useful precisely because they offer so much functionality. From messaging, games and music playback to controlling “internet of things” devices – it can pretty much handle whatever light duties need to be accomplished. The biggest problem, though, is how messy everything becomes when the bare Pi is out in the open, with all kinds of wires connected to it.

As it turns out, the Raspberry Pi cleans up nicely with the PiKasa, a simple but attractive housing structure dedicated to making the module more presentable. The housing comes complete with a 7″ HDMI LCD screen, five USB ports, a LAN hookup, speakers, a battery charger, and a spill proof keyboard just for safety. This setup deepens the Raspberry Pi’s versatility while also making it something that can be left out in the open without causing one to look like a mad scientist. Backers can grab one for $99, with a ship date somewhere in August 2015. Its funding goal is $25,000 by April 14.

The Raspberry Pi certainly has many outfits, and this one is limited to being just a desktop. If a user is looking for something a bit more portable, the RaspiTab offers some Pi in a hackable and upgradeable tablet form.

Cell Phone Accessories Displays Input Tablet Accessories

Portable DAMO creates wall-sized touch screen for Android devices

While giving a corporate slide presentation, it would be handy to be able to control the images just by touching them on the wall or projection screen that they’re appearing on.

The DAMO from Taiwan is a portable accessory that connects via Wi-Fi to Android 4.2 and higher smartphones and tablets, and then displays whatever is on the Android device screen through any projector. The DAMO sensor connects to the projector via an HDMI cable. The touch screen that is created can be as large as 80 inches. When the user touches the wall or other surface with an included DAMO ring or pen device, an infrared signal is sent to the DAMO sensor and then back to the Android device. Interacting can also be done via hand gestures or controlled via the Android device screen.

The sensor can also be attached to a TV or computer monitor. Backers who provide $99 as part of an early bird Indiegogo special will get a DAMO system when it ships in August of this year. That’s $70 less than its expected $169 price. The money is going to be used to put DAMO into mass production. Its makers are trying to raise $90,000 by March 8.

DAMO holds promise. But the limited number of devices that it supports now will limit its potential customer base. It has some similarities to the cheaper Project Wedge, which supports more mobile devices, but otherwise pales in comparison to DAMO. The main customer for DAMO will likely be people who frequently make business presentations, although there could be some limited appeal among kids. The product’s name is a version of the Chinese name of a Buddhist monk, also known in English as Bodhidharma. Besides being credited with training Shaolin monks in martial arts, Bodhidharma is said to be the founder of Zen Buddhism, which is why charms in his likeness are popular in Japan. The green DAMO logo is a take on those charms, also known as Daruma dolls, the DAMO team says.