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Showing posts with label Google. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Google. Show all posts

Saturday, 5 April 2014

Some interesting April Fools' Day 2014 Technology Jokes

Its very interesting to see all the companies proposing very interesting concepts on the 1st of April. I was told that not everyone knows what April Fools day means so here is the link to Wikipedia.

Samsung Fly-Fi: Samsung has come up with some interesting ideas, the first being Wi-Fi for everyone powered by Pigeons. They have a website here with Video.

Power of Pigeons


Looks like since we have Pigeons everywhere, so they are always used in one way or the other. The best prank ever in my opinion was the PigeonRank by Google, back in 2002. I spent a few hours that day trying to figure out how they were actually doing it.

Smart Wear was always going to be the big thing. Quite a few smart wearables this year.

Bonobos has done a good job with with TechStyle. See video below:



Samsung has a glove called Samsung Fingers here. The best thing I liked was 'Talk to the Hand'

Samsung Fingers_Talk to the hand

HTC came up with similar concept called Gluuv



Toshiba's DiGiT is as interesting. See the video:


Virgin Mobile, Canada has come up with SmartKicks. See here.



Roku Watch is not too bad:


Virgin America even convinced Sir Richard Branson to appear in the April Fools ad along with Tony Faddell, the CEO of Nest. Funny Youtube video here.

Sony Power Food was just okay, video here.

Toshiba Spehere is a funny Gaming concept, see here.

Nokia reviewed its most popular phone 3310 with modern day features here. Coloured screen with 41Megapixel camera.

Google wants to Emojify the web here.

Google Japan has a magic hand here.

Selfiebot by Orbotix is a cool concept, here.

Twitter Helmet didnt make me laugh though. See here.

Is there some others that I missed? Please feel free to add it in the comments.

Saturday, 1 March 2014

Mobile, Context and Discovery - Ben Evans


An Interesting presentation and Video from Benedict Evans, both embedded below:



There is an interesting Q&A at the end of the talk in the video. You can directly jump to 27:30 marker for the Q&A. One of the interesting points highlighted by him, that I always knew but was not able to convey it across is there is no real point comparing Google and Apple. I am too lazy to type down so please jump to 45:10. One of the comment on the Youtube summarises it well:

"Google is a vast machine learning engine... and it spent 10-15 years building that learning engine and feeding it data"

So true. It is not Apple vs Google; it is not about the present. It is about the future (see Google's recent acquisitions for context). As Benedict says, if Google creates beautiful, meaningful and unique experiences for users, why would they do it only for Android, they would also have it on Apple devices. 

In the end, comparing Apple and Google is like comparing Apple(s) and Oranges :)



Saturday, 23 February 2013

Google Glasses - take two

Picture source: Guardian

So nearly after a year of my Google Glass post, looks like Google is ready to ship some of these glasses to some competition winners for $1500. Even the Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is excited and cant wait to get his hands on it.

There is also this new video showing 'How it Feels' wearing Glass and everytime I go back to youtube, the count increases by 100K. Embedded below:


My two main concerns are that I have to speak loudly to the glass which may not be convenient in public places or in front of others and the other being that when many people will have these devices, my Glass may pickup command from another user.

Sometime back there was a discussion on 'Bone conduction audio'. This will allow the user to hear from the Glass without the need of a headphone or speakers, I guess a similar kind of technology is needed in place of a mic. The Glass can sense that the user who is wearing it is talking instead of someone else. It should also solve the need to speak to speak loudly to the Glass.

Monday, 9 July 2012

#FWIC Summary in Tweets with Pics, Presentations and Videos

Here is my summary from The 4th Future of Wireless International Conference (#FWIC). I created a OTT Stats, Facts and Figures presentation for the conference which is available here.


DAY 1

@zahidtg: #FWIC has started



@marekpawlowski: Full house for #fwic, sign of thriving, continually expanding mobile industry in Cambridge





@Qualcomm_UK: "Mobile is the largest technology platform in history" – #Qualcomm’s Joe Barrett at #FWIC keynote

@JawadAbbassi: Globally: 1 million new 3G connections are added on a daily basis. Source: @Qualcomm_IAR

@najeebster: 3.2bn 3G connections by 2016 Joe Barrett from Qualcomm at #FWIC

@geoffmccormick: data traffic to grow over 1000% in the next decade.

@Qualcomm_UK: “Consumers expect the amazing” – Joe Barrett of Qualcomm

@cambwireless: Joe Barrett from @Qualcomm_UK keynote 3.4 billion 3G connections by 2016, 1000 x growth in data by 2020

@Qualcomm_UK: #Snapdragon processors are used by 50+ manufacturers, in 340+ devices with a further 400+ in development – Joe Barrett, Qualcomm

@ndahad: The significance of mobile technologies globally, particularly emerging markets, & more smartphones to the masses http://ow.ly/i/IVvF

@Alliantus: Interesting first session. Powershift. New spectrum. More base stations - smaller & deployed to offload traffic - bring net closer.

@marekpawlowski: Does Qualcomm's Alljoyn hold possibility of internet of things network which meshes to become stronger the more entities which join?

@marekpawlowski: Qualcomm's Halo transferring kw power wirelessly over air gaps to charge cars. A final untethering of humans from power sockets?

@ndahad: Mobile - the digital 6th sense





@Alliantus: very interesting scene setting by #joebarrett #qualcomm one of best conference starts ever - on the button and no sales pitch. FAB.

@dw2: Note to self: learn more about http://www.qualcommhalo.com/ the Qualcomm Halo wireless charging system for cars mentioned by Joe Barrett

@geoffmccormick: biggest challenge for wireless auto charging is not the tech but the system. New behaviours and challenges abound.

@RichardTraherne: Further support for small cells to solve cellular access problems, at Future Wireless International Conference

@zahidtg: Connected car by Qualcomm at #FWIC




@Qualcomm_UK: Hey, @CambWireless #fwic and want to see the video #Qualcomm’s Joe Barrett talked about this morning?:



Joe Baratt's presentation is available here and the video is here.



@bensmithuk: Listening to Olaf Swantee (Everything Everywhere CEO)

@Alliantus: everything everywhere #Olafswantec CEO. Partnering for #4G. Built for data. More speed 4-6 times faster in lab. Latency improved.

@najeebster: Olaf Swantee, CEO, Everything Everywhere reckons this 4G stuff can provide connectivity equal to fixed-line broadband, hmm

@Alliantus: 4G tool for proving connectivity. Part of solution. Data growth rates 250 times in past year - smart phones and smart data.

@roryponeill: CEO Everything Everywhere Olaf Swantee "I'm staggered by the continuing growth of data. We can't cope with 3G...we must go 4G"

@cambwireless: Olaf Swantee, CEO, Everything Everywhere speaks at #fwic "Growth rates of 250% in data on the network every year"

@Alliantus: UK more dependent on services than any other because of service culture. Infrastructure needs to be improved - UK early adopters.

@kumithiru: wonder what percentage of EE's UK customer base using data hungry devices use them at home? 50% 60% 70% ?

@najeebster: 4G carries a stronger signal even cell edge, will help to solve rural broadband issues

@rob_symes: olaf swantee says there would huge job creation by next gen 4G network

@roryponeill: Olaf continues "Britain is reliant on digital service industry - no.1 contributor to GDP - yet 40 other countries have 4G already"

@Alliantus: #fwic reason delay because industry is sweating assets in UK. Big capital expenditure has not come. ROI? Not enough profit? Hard to believe.

@BrianIsATwit: Olaf Swantee #fwic 4G use cases are video, TV and real time gaming. B2B cloud services. M2M also driving new apps.

@BrianIsATwit: Olaf Swantee at #fwic inferring UK economy impacted by poor fixed and mobile broadband. 4G positive investment impact £5bn & 125K new jobs.

@Alliantus: #fwic ironically really poor O2 service here. Blocking tweet on everything everywhere? Or just because it is about #4G?

@Alliantus: role of lawyers in causing delay? Are we destined to be laggards and not leaders because of cyclical nature of Tech adoption?

@Alliantus: can be back on track quickly. Already have a 3G network? Many users think they are on 4G already.

@Alliantus: thought provoking talk. Really believes in focusing on customers. Passion. Making experience better. Good operator perspective.

@marekpawlowski: Refreshing to hear Olaf Swantee prioritising fundamental improvements to network quality over 'tariff gimmicks & loyalty points'

@marekpawlowski: However, concerned by Swantee's faith in 4G to solve rural access. Unlikely economics will be any different than any proceeding 'G'

@marekpawlowski: Challenge for Swantee will be moving from sales culture of pushing 'broadband' & 'smartphone' SKUs, getting closer to customer reality

@cambwireless: Olaf Swantree stresses the economy is dependent on digital infrastructure. 40 countries rolled out 4g already - uk falling behind

@BrianIsATwit: as a rural dweller my fixed and mobile experience terrible. don't doubt 4G capability but do doubt deployment and economics.

No Slides. Video of Olaf Swantee is available here


@Alliantus: #paultaylor #google. Text to speech. Can't tweet because of sensitivity. Confidentiality works both ways Google.

@geoffmccormick: is there an irony in google asking for privacy ??? Txt to voice google insider info coming soon (I hope).

@eurocomms: Interesting... Google engineering manager asks #fwic if his speech can remain confidential ahead of upcoming developer conference

@geoffmccormick: voice input needs visual confirmation. Interesting point made by google.

@eurocomms: Apologies to all those asking re Google at #fwic - WiFi ironically pretty poor... – talk was mainly about developments in speech technology

@Lautarinho: Amusing efforts by Google to keep information at a major conference private it seems.

@Brill_Brum: Muppet!... Google engineering manager asks #fwic if his speech can remain confidential ahead of upcoming developer conference

@rpctelecom: Paul Taylor of Google gave an interesting talk whose title he doesn't want mentioned and said some interesting unreportable things

@rpctelecom: By the way, Paul Taylor of Google needs @connectifyme to solve his hotel Internet multiple-device problems

No Video or Slides for presentation by Paul Taylor, Engineering Manager, Google

ZG: Since the Google I/O 2012 is already over, I dont see why this cannot be shared now. I will add the pictures at the end of this post.

@Alliantus: Interesting panel discussion. Femtocell for capacity? Will we as consumers spend the money themselves?

@cambwireless: Panel session @DavidCleevely pushes femtocell opportunity for new business model

@rupert_baines: @davidcleavely at #fwic on need for #smallcell how femtocells create opportunity & new business model for carriers: economics view not tech

@cambwireless: Panel Session Olaf Swantree says femtocells are part of the equation

@marekpawlowski: Good point about expediting uptake of femto cells by operators recognising & discounting femto use in tariffs. Few currently do.

@JawadAbbassi: 50% of #cellular users in the #UK still do not use a #smartphone

@roryponeill: Olaf "we still have 50% of our customers in the UK who don't have smartphones" <--this game is not over ;)

@marekpawlowski: Swantee: As internet becomes personal, people resist advertising. Digital advertising works only when it helps users complete missions

Video of Panel discussion here




@Alliantus: Chewing on ideas surrounding the evolution of the device. Rory O'Neill RIM.

@najeebster: Future of wireless by speaker from RIM. Vaguely ironic?

@najeebster: RIM - there are still CIOs that think response time to an email in over 48 hrs is OK

@Alliantus: predictive conversations can impact on way we communicate. Conversations will be written across multiple devices. Simplifying life?

@zahidtg: Is this the industry challenge?





@kumithiru: @roryponeill that's a big percentage. Vodafone recently referenced only 27% of European customer base are smartphone users

@geoffmccormick: great talk by @roryponeill of rim. Concise explanation of the role of device innovation and associated experiences. Well done !

@Alliantus: plenty of room for innovation in the market. Incredible growth potential. More of a bb pitch than generic piece about industry.

@najeebster: very decent spiel by @roryponeill that there's room for more than 2 players in a $1.4Tr mkt

@Alliantus: global market is aggregation of lots of local markets. Interesting concept worth noting.

@marekpawlowski: A vision of Blackberry at heart of internet of things, using back end to predict, mediate conversations & transactions by @roryponeill

@marekpawlowski: Not sure I agree with @roryponeill that digital simplifies conversations. Rather allows us to deal with more simultaneous complexity

@JawadAbbassi: According to #Blackberry, globally #smartphones make up 23% of total cellular handsets.

Rory O’Neill, Vice President of Software and Services EMEA, RIM presentation here and video here




@Alliantus: RichardJacklin #anite my god its full of stars. iPhone created new form factor. Much reduced range of models. Is this a trend?

@Alliantus: Model range dip in 2011. Seen across all devices as shift in vendors.

@rob_symes: data prices must rise by 40 percent to make up for loss of voice and messaging

@dw2: Liked the Arthur C Clarke 2001 references in Richard Jacklin's #fwicinnovation talk. I'll have some more in my debate pitch tomorrow :-)

@mattablott: Some interesting studies on operator 'device ranging' by Anite

@dw2: Richard Jacklin's summary of Samsung's recipe for device success: experiment rapidly with multiple approaches + smartly observe market

@marekpawlowski: Hearing how differentiation moved to software. Is it that users don't want differentiated hardware or just it is currently uneconomic?

@sdfriedner: Hot topics at #FWIC How will devices, particularly smartphones evolve in the future and what will be the differentiator?

@marekpawlowski: Asked: is great RF performance a UX differentiator? Yes, but not at point of sale! Becomes relevant once you own, when it's too late!

@marekpawlowski: Revealing reaction to Q about improving sustainability by keeping, upgrading handsets longer. "Our industry is based on consumption."

@zahidtg: Interesting analysis of cost/defect by Richard Jacklin of Anite


Richard Jacklin, Business Development Director, Anite; presentation here, video here



@rpctelecom: Of the around 40 speakers and panelists at #fwic as far as I can see only 3 are women. Hmmm says something about our industry I fear.


Track 1: Four Pathways to International Business Growth - Chaired by John Davies, UKTI

@cambwireless: Finbarr Moynihan at Mediatek says smartphones will have 60-70% of market with 100 dollar smartphone possible

Presentations:



Track 2: Utility or Valued Brand - Chaired by Mark Neild, Nokia Siemens Network


@cambwireless: Track 2 at #fwic Looking at value based pricing - mobile operators need to focus on core bus. Partner with OTT - don't compete

@cambwireless: Mark Neild, Nokia Siemens networks: Up to third of revenue on handset subsidy

@cambwireless: iPhone put more focus on network quality. Customers care more about quality of their networks

@cambwireless: Mark Neild, Nokia Siemens Network says operators need to stick to what they are good at - delivering access

Presentations:



Track 3: Bandwidth Hogs or Experience Innovators - Chaired by Reginald Kipke, Velocix

@marekpawlowski: Terrifyingly prehistoric to be sitting in a session about 'threats and opportunities' of OTT

@marekpawlowski: Myriad's @MWJ encourages operators to do *something* with digital service innovation. Doesn't need to be perfect first time, just try

@marekpawlowski: Good point by @mwj about how forgiving customers can be of experimentation if it meets certain needs. Good UX isn't about perfection.

Presentations:


Track 4: Where Next for Devices - Chaired by Zahid Ghadialy, Explanotech


@zahidtg: Wow! Track 4 at #FWIC is completely packed. Everyone loves to hear about device evolution.

@JawadAbbassi: The Future #Internet of things will need a machine 2 machine gateway to be scaleable


@zahidtg: Lol. Ian Davidsons slide



@zahidtg: Arm did an analysis that even though your phone may be 2GHz and 4 core, most of the time its running on 200MHz

@zahidtg: Science fiction here...transmission of Smell @ track4


@zahidtg: From a presentation by Jenny Tillotson



@zahidtg: Who has tried transmitting smells


@zahidtg: Interesting slide by @BrianIsATwit



Presentations: 






Track 5: The continuing role of Intellectual Property - Chaired by John Haine, Cognovo

Presentations:



Dinner in St. John's college


Day 2

@zahidtg: Cambridge consultants showing their Small cells reference design with Mindspeed tech inside


@zahidtg: Freescale and Arkessa showing M2M for the next 50 billion devices at#FWIC



@cambwireless: Day two of #fwic well under way with Matthew Postgate, Head of R & D, BBC talking “How is mobile broadband changing broadcasting?”

@dw2: Found a jackpot of fascinating videos about the future of wireless tech at http://3g4g.blogspot.co.uk/search/label/Videos courtesy of @zahidtg

@ndahad: the opportunities for mhealthcare. Professor Chris Lowe presenting on 2nd day of conference



@ndahad: what physicians typically looking for patients to track or monitor at home. Thousands of apps already available



@marekpawlowski: Perhaps there's no such thing as mHealth, just millions of distinct design challenges which, we hope, have some common tech solutions?

@ndahad: mhealthcare - the mhealth ecosystem




@marekpawlowski: Wealth of healthcare insights from Chris Lowe. Particularly the interest in doctors for using digital to facilitate more collaboration

@marekpawlowski: Also how greater self monitoring by patients could aid resource planning and epidemic response in the health system

@ndahad: big opportunity for mhealthcare solutions is in diabetes monitoring, 400 million affected worldwide, figure set to double in 10 years

@Alliantus: everyone saying what a fantastic job #ChrisLowe from Uni. Cambridge did this morning. Talking about mHealth

Prof. Chris Lowe, Director, University of Cambridge; slides here, video here




@kumithiru: Given voice to text keynote at yesterday's #FWIC fun to see@MatthewPostgate start with a Siri slide today

@Alliantus: How is mobile broadband changing broadcasting. A personal journey. Key enabler to redefine operating context. Industrial revolution.

@Alliantus: Towards a new broadcasting system. Universal. Live & on demand. Creation & curation. Immersive & pervasive. Shared and personal.

@Alliantus: Trend towards immersive and pervasive Tv. People want to be part of the service. Aunties view not the only one.

@Alliantus: Mobile equalised productisation with BBC content. No longer after thought.

@kumithiru: BBC 1-4-10 strategy for online service provision

@zahidtg: The 1 10 4 concept by BBC at #FWIC - 4 stands for 4 screens




@zahidtg: 50% of iPlayer access is now on 3G

@bensmithuk: BBC working on companion apps to play-out live in sync with programming including shows like Frozen Planet.

@Alliantus: is the broadcaster creator or curator? What is its role with user generated news, eg?

@BrianIsATwit: BBC #fwic future tech roadmap for broadcasting. LTE broadcast mode important.




@kumithiru: a lot of talk about e-MBMS in the US LTE networks good to see@MatthewPostgate of BBC deal with issue

@zahidtg: eMBMS is a research area by BBC :-)

@bensmithuk: BBC approaches for syncing 2nd screen: pure time sync, audio watermarking & syncing API interfaces (in order of 'frame accuracy')

@evolaris: Matthew Postgate, BBC: eMBMS interesting technology for broadcasters

@marekpawlowski: Matthew Postgate setting out immersive (3D, HD) & pervasive (new touchpoints) as tenets of BBC strategy

@marekpawlowski: BBC using Web sync, audio tags & home network API to link linear broadcast & companion devices. All must degrade gracefully

@marekpawlowski: Being able to link linear & companion content with frame accuracy is priority for BBC to try more creative multi-touchpoint experience

@marekpawlowski: Since iPlayer made accessible over cellular, has grown to 50/50 mix with Wifi on iPhone, but has not cannibalised Wifi at all

@marekpawlowski: However iPlayer iPad usage remains primarily Wifi, suggesting predominance of home usage

@marekpawlowski: I wonder if BBC will experiment beyond just multi-screen & start to build contextual experiences responsive to sensors & behaviour?

Matthew Postgate, Head of Research & Development, BBC; No Slides but Video is available here.




@zahidtg: Test challenges of connected car by Rohde&Schwarz


@zahidtg: We are also talking of VoLTE testing. The small note at the bottom has always worried me



Anton MessmerDirector of Subdivision, Mobile Radio Teseters, Rohde and Schwarz; slides here.




Innovation Hothouse - Chaired by Kevin Coleman, Project Director, 'Discovering Start-Ups'
Video here.




Policy Panel - Chaired by Stuart Revell, Chairman, ICT KTN Wireless Technology & Spectrum Working Group

@Alliantus: Airwave: spectrum is important to secure channels. Following global trends. Public safety network is minute in comparison to public.

@Alliantus: Small network for emergency response is expensive for small net. What price safety? Spectrum is important.

@Alliantus: Motorola. What do you want you phone 911? Someone who knows we ring 999. Cultural differences are interesting.

@zahidtg: Interesting. Emergency services use 0.9% of all spectrum between UHF and 6Ghz.

@RichardTraherne: Joe Butler, Ofcom, at Future #Wireless Conference #FWIC says radio spectrum access/use strategy must change

@Alliantus: International countries will not wait for Europe to make decisions. Sharing of infrastructure and services. LTE allows opportunity.

@Alliantus: How do we as a society value spectrum.

@Alliantus: voda. 15 year decisions regarding infrastructure. Where is the money? People don't care how they connect. How do we accommodate?

@cambwireless: Andy Hudson, Vodafone, head of spectrum policy, says that the most efficient use of spectrum is overall aim

@Alliantus: LTE not the soln for public safety. USA have made decisions that they will use it on the back of disasters such as Katrina and 911.

@Alliantus: Control will be driver for two networks. Could have sharing but only if emergency had control.

@zahidtg: I absolutely disagree that broadcasting is a complete waste of spectrum. If there were no broadcast ppl would try VOD, overwhelming nw

@cambwireless: Andy Hudson, Head of Spectrum Policy, Vodafone: "Biggest challenge is to make low cost high performance filter for handsets"

@rpctelecom: Jeppe Jepson of Motorola "broadcasting is the most wasteful use of the radio spectrum" - I'm not sure many would agree with him!

@rpctelecom: Ofcom wants a flexible spectrum map but will only "enable" not "regulate" for it. But will incumbents release spectrum if not pushed?

@rpctelecom: Andy Hudson of Vodafone says that Vodafone and O2 will share network infrastructure to give 98% indoor coverage in UK

Video of Policy Panel here.




@Alliantus: Colin Brereton #PwC Mobile enabler of global change. Interesting slide deck. Worth a download. Opportunity in Devoping World.

@bensmithuk: Don’t we need to stop marvelling at how the ‘young people’ are able to multi-screen and discuss / understand what all consumers want?

@bensmithuk: Tired of hearing ‘developed world’ & ‘emerging markets’ as binary distinction in mobile. Don’t we need a more granular description?

@Alliantus: New generation different mobile use. Apps 10Bn user market. See slides for other.

@cambwireless: Pwc - planet needs to be more productive. Mobile can become the primary enabler of social and economic development

@Peter_Whale: Thanks to Colin Bererton #PwC for laying challenge to focus creative energies on application of wireless to massively benefit society

Colin Brereton, Partner, Global Communications Industry Practice, PwC; slides here video here.

The Cambridge Debate

@zahidtg: #FWIC debate:This house believes that the future of Innovation in the wireless industry is within the Virtual rather than the Physical World

Video here.


@Peter_Whale: really stimulating 2 days. Head full of insights. Now the fun of connecting the dots; finding the takeaways; turning ideas into action

@vectafrank: well done@cambwireless - best yet!


Participants:
@cambwireless = Cambridge Wireless official twitter account
@zahidtg = Zahid Ghadialy
@marekpawlowski = Marek Pawlowski
@Qualcomm_UK = Qualcomm UK
@JawadAbbassi = Jawad J. Abbassi
@najeebster = Najeeb Khan
@geoffmccormick = geoff mccormick
@ndahad = Nitin Dahad
@Alliantus = Kevin Coleman
@dw2 = David Wood
@RichardTraherne = Richard Traherne
@bensmithuk = Ben Smith
@roryponeill = Rory O'Neill
@rob_symes = Rob Symes
@BrianIsATwit = Brian Robertson
@eurocomms = eurocomms
@rupert_baines = Rupert Baines
@mattablott = Matt Ablott
@sdfriedner = Saul Friedner
@Brill_Brum = Stu
@rpctelecom = RPC Telecom
@evolaris = evolaris
@RichardTraherne = Richard Traherne
@Peter_Whale = Peter Whale
@vectafrank = Frank Morris

In case you enjoyed my effort in collecting the tweets please let me know by clicking the 'Very Useful' checkbox below.


xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxo Additional Information xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxo 

As I mentioned in the beginning, Paul Taylor, Engineering Manager, Google, gave us a presentation and requested that we dont share information because of the Google developer conference. As this is over now, I am sharing the pics I took for his presentation. If anyone from Google raises an objection, I will take them down :-) 
















Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Project Glass: One day... By Google


I seem to like the Corning ones more that I blogged here.

** New Edits 05/04/12 09:40 **
From CNET:

Google's augmented reality glasses are real! Dubbed Project Glass, the long-rumoured lenses that show you heads-up information about the world around you have been confirmed by the company.
At the moment, Google's announcement is limited to a Google+ page
Here is a parody on above video from Tom Scott:

Friday, 11 February 2011

Smarter Cars of the Future

We all know that cars are getting smarter. Back in Oct., Google unveiled the cars that can drive by themselves. I am sure they will make our life much better and we will be able to catch on the sleep at early morning commute.

Then there were quite a few futuristic cars at the CES 2011 last month. One such video is embedded below.




The following is a summary from the an IEEE article:

Cars have been getting smarter for years, studded with suites of sensors and supporting electronics aimed at keeping them from crashing. But entertainment and convenience have rapidly caught up to safety as the impetus for new in-car electronics development. Because automakers typically spend three years developing and producing new cars—and new gadget candy to go with them—they’ve found themselves constantly playing catch-up with consumer electronics and consumer expectations. So car companies have teamed up with the makers of smartphone software platforms to integrate a spectacular array of apps designed for handsets with cars’ digital dashboards, center consoles, and speaker systems.

Take for instance Ford’s new Focus all-electric vehicle, which made a big splash at the 2011 International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas last month. It features a software application called MyFord Mobile.

The app, which runs on Ford’s proprietary Sync platform and is compatible with the BlackBerry, iPhone, and Android devices, links the car with the driver’s smartphone and home computer. The software lets the driver listen to a smartphone’s music library and lets passengers watch movies or TV shows. It delivers information such as when electricity prices are at their lowest (to allow for the cheapest battery recharging) and where the nearest charging stations are. And it allows a smartphone to function as a remote control, by means of a connection to cloud-based servers. This remote communication lets the handset keep tabs on the car’s location and the batteries’ state of charge. It will also let the driver start the Focus EV from indoors on a blustery January morning, then step into a car whose seats and steering wheel are already warm. The MyFord Mobile app lets the driver remotely start the car, turn on the heater or air conditioner, or unlock the doors from anywhere in the world (including beneath the bedcovers).

And because the system differentiates one driver’s key from another’s, it presents information on the reconfigurable 4-inch screens on either side of the speedometer in the current driver’s preferred color and style. The state of charge, for example, could be shown as a percentage of the full charge, as an estimate of the remaining miles before recharging, or as a simple bar that gets shorter as the batteries’ energy is consumed. This differentiation also works for utility and entertainment options; it automatically queues up driver A’s list of radio station presets, favorite mobile apps, and preferred display options for the 8-inch center console touch screen. Because MyFord Mobile links the Focus to the driver’s handset, it can also access his or her contact list for hands-free calling and read out e-mails and texts through the car’s speakers.

Ford is trying to position itself as a technological leader in the automotive industry with MyFord Mobile and Sync AppLink Voice Control, which puts the driver in control of all the Sync system’s capabilities via voice commands, but it has stiff competition from the likes of Mercedes-Benz, Continental, and Toyota. Launched by Mercedes-Benz in November 2009, the Mbrace system, designed and engineered by Hughes Telematics of Atlanta, was the first telematics service on the market to give smartphones the power to remotely lock, unlock, or locate a car. It didn’t signal a revolution in the way the average driver interacts with his or her vehicle because when the German luxury vehicle maker offers a new technology or set of features, there is usually a multiyear wait for them to trickle down to cars whose sticker prices aren’t stratospheric.

The second generation of Mbrace debuted last September. It introduced Mercedes-Benz Concierge, which not only opens the car to information from the outside but also makes some car-based information and entertainment options portable. The Mbrace Mobile Application 2.0 gives iPhone and Blackberry users single-phone-number access to recommendations for nearby entertainment and restaurant options, directions, traffic updates, and more, whether the person is in the car or not. The concierge then sends destination information to the smartphone or directly to the in-vehicle navigation system. With the Mbrace system’s latest wrinkle, the Drive2Friend service, the driver can dictate a friend’s mobile number and the app sends a text message reporting that the driver is trying to find the person. The friend has the option of allowing his or her location to be sent back to the car via cellular triangulation.

While Ford was showing off its wares at CES, Continental was also there showcasing the Android-based AutoLinQ system, which lets the driver connect to the car in three ways.

AutoLinQ’s Mobile View lets you to send text messages to your car; the smart vehicle can text you back with information such as its location. In this demo [Flash video], a smartphone user is shown making a remote inquiry about the status of his car. Mobile View reports that the sunroof is open and offers the option to close it or ignore the warning. When he taps Close on the handset’s touch screen, the sunroof’s glass panel glides shut. This type of call-and-response vehicle update also tells whether doors are closed and locked and whether the headlights or interior lights are on. Mobile View doesn’t wait for a query to alert the driver when the alarm is triggered, the battery is depleted, the air bag has been activated, or the internal temperature of the car is too high or low. And like MyFord Mobile, it turns the smartphone into a remote control for locking and unlocking the doors, starting the engine, flashing the lights, and more.

AutoLinQ’s Home View lets you download apps and configure vehicle settings from your home computer. Clickable tabs at the bottom of the Home View screen let the car owner move through screens showing a wealth of data on the car’s status, driver preferences, navigation information, and applications that can be downloaded or fine-tuned. The status menu tells whether the ignition is on and displays the fuel and motor oil levels, the pressure for each of the four tires, and much, much more.

Car View, in AutoLinQ, is for updating features from the driver’s seat. Car View provides the same information as Home View but lets the driver use the center console touch screen to download apps on the fly that provide better control of the car and the ability to remotely manipulate electronic devices back home. An app that sends an alert when a game or match in the driver’s favorite sport is about to appear on television also gives the option to activate a digital video recorder at home, pull up a Web site featuring periodic updates about the game, or listen to play-by-play on the radio.

Continental is also designing unique apps that will enhance vehicle performance. For instance, the Filling Assistant will detect underinflated tires and notify the driver. When the driver goes to inflate the tires, the Filling Assistant will report pressure information to the driver’s smartphone and honk the car’s horn or flash its lights to indicate when a tire has enough air.

Not to be left out, Toyota, the world’s leading automaker, debuted the QNX-based Entune at CES 2011. Entune is an upgradable suite of entertainment, navigation, and information functions. "Consumers have grown accustomed to having the world at their fingertips through their mobile phones," says Jon Bucci, vice president of Toyota’s advanced technology department, who notes that putting them in the car is a natural evolution.

After downloading the Toyota Entune app to a handset and syncing it with the Toyota vehicle, the driver can begin accessing content and services, including Bing for Web navigation and OpenTable, which can make reservations at any one of 15 000 restaurants, with directions sent seamlessly to the navigation system and information appearing on the center console. Entune also lets a driver get customizable real-time traffic updates, sports, weather, stocks, and information on prices at local fueling stations. The system doesn’t forget music, which has almost always been a part of the driving experience. Entune includes Iheartradio, which delivers roughly 750 local radio stations at the touch of a button.

The tide of apps extending handset capabilities to cars will only continue to rise. ABI Research, in Oyster Bay, N.Y., reports that the number of users of automotive apps will increase from 1.4 million in 2010 to more than 28 million by 2015. And according to Global Industry Analysts, the vehicle telematics market is expected to reach US $11.2 billion by 2015.

You can read the complete article here.

In other news, Robots in future will have their own Internet and content like Wikipedia, etc. Does anyone else remember 'The Terminator'?

Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Phone(y) Detectives!


Too many Apps are being developed that will turn people into ametuer detectives.

A new mobile application called Recognizr can identify a person’s face via your phone camera and deliver not only profile information about that person but also show you their latest status updates.

Swedish computer vision specialists Polar Rose combined forces with interface designers TAT (The Astonishing Tribe) to create the Recognizr as a prototype application for Android phones to show off Polar Rose’s mobile face recognition library. Polar Rose’s software recognizes individuals, while TAT’s interface uses augmented reality to show profile information from sites like Facebook, YouTube and LinkedIn and the latest status updates from the recognized person.

Recognizr uses FaceLib, a mobile face recognition library from Polar Rose, which is available for Android and iPhone. FaceLib can recognize faces in photo or video but, in common with other facial recognition products, is more accurate for photos. Recognizr also uses Polar Rose’s server-side solution FaceCloud because you can’t store profiles of all potential matches in the phone — although recognizing people who are already in the phone’s address book can be handled locally on the device.

In a presentation at the Hot Chips conference at Stanford University, David Petrou, a project lead of Google Goggles, described the future of Goggles.

Google Goggles, as Petrou reminded the audience, includes the ability for the mobile Android application to take a picture of the object ad send it back to Google's cloud services. Petrou demonstrated the app with a picture of a beer can with an Android smart phone, which identified the can as a can of Boddington's. A results page showed an icon of the result, with some results from the Web. He also showed a videocassette of the movie Breakin', and Goggles identified it correctly.

The basic design principle of Goggles, Petrou said, was that it has to be universal: queries can't be processed within a single finite context, such as a bottle of wine. Petrou showed off a book that contained an image of a manual transmission linkage: Goggle returned both a link to the book on a shopping site, but also linked to a search on manual transmissions.

Goggles returns a specific result about a third of the time, Petrou said, and the internal CONGAS recognition engine matches images to aa database of about 150,000 landmarks by finding "interest points" within an image. New photos compared to the database can be correctly identified about 50 to 60 percent of the time, with a false positive rate of about one in 10,000, he said.

Goggles' strong suits? Packaged goods, such as movies. But with generic objects, such as an image of a red car, Goggles still struggles.

Goggles can also work with bar codes. A recent addition has been the inclusion of machine translation, which can recognize text and translate it on the fly.

Unfortunately, Goggles has to work as a client application, as Google needs as much of a fine-grained control of the camera as possible, such as the white balance.

Petrou said that Google was considering opening up Goggles to third-party applications, so that a stamp collector could upload an image of a stamp with annotation describing what it is. An open API may also be released, so that a picture could be taken of a foreign currency, and an app could be opened to automatically convert that bill's value into dollars.

Google also plans to fuse the camera with Goggles, so that augmented reality may be the future of visual search, Petrou said. "We'll use it where it's the right user interface," he said.

Goggles does have the capability to recognize faces, although that functionality hasn't been implemented in the app as yet. That might change as more and more people begin uploading data to the Web: if 17 different images of your face appeared on the Web, a picture take of you with Google Goggles would rank "you" in the top ten results about half the time. If there were 50 results, your face would be ranked in the top 5 results abour half the time, he said

Facial Recognition along with Geo-tagging is also available in Picasa web albums. You can already find who is connected to someone in facebook when you search for the people. Once all these information would start working together then you can identify the person where they have been on holidays (based on Geo-tagging of photos) and when they have gone there. Who else in their friends/family had gone with them, etc.

In fact FBI/CIA/MI5 may make their own app to "report potential terrorists" where if you see any suspicious person you can open one of their apps and click the photo of some person and the secret service will quickly check if this person is potentially a problem.

Of course we are not discussing the privacy concerns yet but looks like Scary future to me.

Tuesday, 24 August 2010

Mobile Payments to be mainstream in 2011

With some much talk (and hype) surrounding NFC and Mobile payments, it looks quite possible that m-payments will enter mainstream in the Western world in the forthcoming year. Though mobile payments have become norm in developing countries like Kenya, Senegal and India, its yet to catch on in UK and the USA.

Here are some interesting facts from MobileBeyond:
  • The mobile transaction market is so huge it offers room for multiple players. Yearly worldwide electronic transactions total $7-$10 TRILLION
  • Competitors are generally local to each country or region leaving plenty of open territory for mobile payment service and technology companies. Companies that win in their markets will be those that understand customer needs.
  • PayPal in the U.S., which has traditionally catered to merchant accounts, most likely will adopt a similar mobile strategy. (Both Obopay and PayPal are service providers–not technology companies like Fundamo in South Africa that provides software solutions for service companies.)
  • “The competition is cash”–not the other players in this market space
  • In five to ten years, mobile payments will achieve high adoption among consumers in developing and developed countries.
  • Brazil, Russia, China and Mexico offer growth opportunities for players that understand these markets
  • According to Portio Research, by 2011 mobile commerce payments are estimated to climb to $86.6 billion
  • Nielsen predicts 27% of all U.S. payments by 2012 will still be cash
To get an idea, there are already multiple m-payments providers in Kenya. Leaving out the gians like Google and Paypal, there are other local providers like M-pesa, Pay-Zunguka, Pesapal and Zynde.

The following are the developments in UK from Computer weekly:

Some forms of mobile payments already exist. Phone applications like PayPal Mobile support person-to-person (P2P) payments. SMS-based transactions are used for car parking tickets and mobile commerce allows online shopping through mobile phone browsers.

Contactless cards are also in circulation for credit cards, transport tickets and are used in some food stores. The industry is looking next at near-field communication (NFC) mobile handsets. NFC allows 'tap-and-go' style payments using mobile phones at in-store terminals by incorporating contactless card technology into handsets. Alternatively, micro-SD cards with NFC-enabled chips can be inserted into mobile phones.

The Global System for Mobile Association (GSMA) has launched a Pay-Buy-Mobile project to enable consumers to pay for goods and services via their mobile phones. "By storing a consumer's credit or debit card within the SIM card and employing NFC technology, the mobile phone can be passed near a contactless Point Of Sale (POS) terminal to complete transactions," said Nav Bains, GSMA's senior director of mobile money.

GSMA has been collaborating with standardisation bodies; the European Payments Council, EMVCo, which manages card specifications and smartcard infrastructure standards body, Global Platform. The consortium is developing the Trusted Service Manager requirements document and a certification process to accelerate the commercialisation of mobile NFC services. But some experts believe NFC is a long way from a mass market roll-out in the UK.

The biggest breakthrough in the mobile payment market have been in developing countries, providing bank services via mobile phones for people who have traditionally not had bank accounts. Visa Europe recently launched Europe's first micro-SD based mobile payment systems in Turkey. But it is unclear when such a system will be introduced in the UK. says Juniper Research senior analyst, Howard Wilcox.

The number of contactless terminals in the UK is approximately 26,500 and the UK Card Association predict 14 million contactless cards will have been issued with contactless functionality by the end of 2010. "We're not expecting to give a launch date any time soon," continues Swain. "Globally, there's a lot of discussion but the UK is one of the only areas where we already have the infrastructure that would accept contactless mobile payments," he adds.
UK-based mobile banking firm, Monitise, has also recently launched a joint venture with Visa in India to accelerate the delivery of mobile financial services such as banking, bill payments, mass transit ticketing and mobile top-up to Indian customers. More than infrastructure, Monitise group strategy director, Richard Johnson, believes banks and mobile network operators need to work together. "Banks are where most people keep their money. It's about mobilising bank accounts rather than creating new accounts with network operators. Tap-and-go really requires collaboration," he says.


Industry expert consortium, Mobey Forum, hopes to bring banks, mobile network operators, acquirers and merchants together to build the relationships needed to progress the mobile payments industry.

Gerhard Romen, Mobey Forum marketing chair and director of mobile financial services at Nokia, believes the NFC trials have proved the consumer demand and, by 2011, all of Nokia's new smartphones will be NFC-enabled. "Once people work together, it'll provide simplicity for the user" he says. "A phone with NFC can do more than just behave like a card - it has a display, keyboard and internet connection - and becomes more interactive," he adds.

Today we have credit, debit and, perhaps, contactless cards. Tomorrow banks and mobile network operators hope to provide a mobile wallet. The next step will be introducing tap-and-go into the mainstream market and, despite slow progress, industry experts are increasingly certain it will happen "soon".

From eWeek:

Google and Apple are both making moves to ensure smooth financial transactions on their mobile platforms.

Last week news bubbled up that Google and PayPal were brokering a deal to let the search engine use the e-commerce service as a payment option for applications purchased through Google's Android Market.

Apple, meanwhile, hired an expert in near field communication (NFC) technology as its new product manager for mobile commerce and has published a number of NFC-related patents in recent months.

Google's e-commerce infrastructure is poor compared with that of Apple. Users may only purchase applications for their Android smartphones from the Android Market in 13 countries.

By way of comparison, consumers may purchase apps from iPhone's App Store in 90 countries all over the world. PayPal would be a welcome addition to Google Checkout and credit cards as payment options in the Android Market.

Gartner has said the market for mobile apps will be $6.2 billion this year, making it an obvious sector for Google and Apple to attack with gusto.

From San Fansisco Chronicle:

Bay Area businesses like Bling Nation and eBay Inc.'s PayPal division are rolling out products that allow people to hand over money to stores, restaurants, coffee shops or friends with the tap of a mobile device. No credit cards, checks or cash are necessary.

Meanwhile, reports suggest that other major companies, including Apple Inc., AT&T Inc. and Verizon Wireless are planning or negotiating to provide similar services.

"What I see is all these distinct initiatives coming together and merging at some point in the not-too-distant future," said Aaron McPherson, practice director at IDC Financial Insights. "All together, they add up to significant change."

Bling Nation, a Palo Alto startup founded in 2007, is among the furthest along in this emerging field, with more than 1,000 retailers nationwide accepting its payment system. The company provides so-called Bling tags, or small stickers, that affix to the back of a mobile phone and transmit data using a wireless standard known as Near Field Communication.

When users tap the tag on a proprietary reader at participating retailers, it pulls money from their PayPal account. For security, users have to enter a personal identification number for purchases over a certain amount, or when transactions occur at an unusual frequency or location.

Merchants pay for or rent the reader and are charged 1.5 percent of the total of every transaction, which is well below the average transaction rate for accepting credit cards. The additional advantage for merchants is that they can analyze customer data in a more fine-grained manner than is permitted through the credit card system. This allows them, for instance, to target sales offers to regular customers or those who haven't been into the shop in a while.

"They enjoy cheaper fees and analytics that can help them issue coupons and make more money," said co-founder Meyer Malka, adding that the advantages are turning businesses into proselytizers on Bling's behalf.

A little more than a month ago, the company began an aggressive push in partnership with PayPal to expand its footprint in downtown Palo Alto. It included giving away thousands of tags preloaded with $20 in credit to customers. There are now more than 50 retailers in the city accepting the payments.

As I mentioned last week, with heavyweights like Nokia, Apple and Google all coming closer to NFC and M-Payments, it should be a winning formula for the end consumers. We will possibly see more use of m-payments in the developed world. Lets not mention about security just yet.

Monday, 17 May 2010

Mobile Phone Developments May 2010


HTC's 4G [sic] Phone is al ready to be rolled out. It is supposed to allow to transfer data averaging speeds of 3 to 6 megabits per second, and bursts hitting 10 Mbps. Ok, I can visualise some suspicious smiles but that's marketing. Its the data speeds of a normal HSPA network but it sells.

Inside the Evo is a 1 gigahertz Snapdragon processor, 512MB of ram, and 1 gig of built in memory. On top of those screaming specs are a 480×800 display, as well as two (count em!) cameras, the better of which packs 8 megapixels. Running it all is the newest version of Android (2.1), as well as HTC’s Sense UI for a little extra eye-candy. All told, this looks like an amazing phone to finally make use of Sprint’s fancy new network, and it may just be their best bet for reversing their falling fortunes.

The Evo 4G will allow for simultaneous voice and data and will be the first smartphone to ship with a YouTube HQ player and a video chat app from Qik to be used with the front-facing camera. Though Sprint's onstage Qik demo didn't work, we were impressed with the Evo 4G's speed (Sprint brought in a 4G tower for the event) as well the handset's 3D gaming capabilities and HDMI output.

As we learned at CTIA 2010, other goodies include an 8-megapixel camera on back, a 1GHz Snapdragon processor, Android 2.1, and an extra-large 4.3-inch capacitive touch screen.



Tired of losing your cell phone? Maybe you need a Zomm.

The new gadget is billed as a wireless leash for mobile phones reminding you when you've left your cell phone behind. Here's how it works:

You just pair the nugget sized Zomm with your phone over Bluetooth. Then you clip the Zomm onto you or attach it to your keychain. When your cell phones gets more than 30 feet away from Zomm, the Zomm unit starts to vibrate, flash lights and then eventually lets out a wail.

You can also use the Zomm as a Bluetooth speaker so you can answer calls through it, instead of talking straight into your phone.

The leash idea can work in reverse too. If you're the type who loses their keys more than their phone, you can just attach Zomm to your keys and then whenever you lose your keys, you can call Zomm and set off its alarm.

There's also a panic button. In case of emergency you can just press it and get help immediately, without dialing on your cell phone.

Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) has named ZOMM as ‘One to Watch’, because of its innovative use of Bluetooth technology and universal appeal.

“Through the use of Bluetooth wireless technology, ZOMM provides an array of convenient applications for users,” said Michael Foley, Ph.D., executive director of the Bluetooth SIG.

“Its simple application of Bluetooth technology appeals to the masses – nobody wants to lose their mobile phone.”



Verizon Wireless and LG Electronics MobileComm U.S.A., Inc. announced the LG Ally™ will be available in Verizon Wireless Communications Stores beginning May 20. The first Android device from LG, the Ally is the perfect assembly of futuristic, stylish design and 3G Android power for customers looking to tackle life's most challenging feats and everyday ventures. Verizon Wireless customers can pre-order the phone at www.verizonwireless.com beginning May 13.


Until now, mobile users have been faced with a choice -- either type on a tiny keyboard or use a touchscreen keypad.

Neither is perfect but, so far, tiny but real keyboards have been winning out for many people. One of the many reasons cited by some BlackBerry users for not switching to an iPhone or similar device is that sensitive touchscreen keypad.

Some manufacturers have tried to give users the best of both worlds, a touchscreen and a pull-out keyboard, but search giant Google has another idea: make all mobile-phone keyboards obsolete.

With the recent release of its own phone, the Nexus One, users are beginning to experiment with what Google hopes is the future of mobile search: voice-and picture-based searching.

"Voice, we think, is just a natural way to solve a problem that exists on all phones, which is that typing is quite difficult, especially in certain languages like Japanese," said Alex Nicolaou from Google's office in Waterloo, Ont..

"Input methods are relatively onerous, whereas saying a brief phrase . . . is extremely fast . . . and there are just times when a picture really is worth 1,000 words.

"If you're standing outside a landmark and you want to know about it, it's obviously going to be much, much simpler to take a photo of that landmark and have the system tell you what it is, than it would be to figure out what name to type in, especially in a foreign country."

Google admits both are still in relatively early development stages and are not very reliable.

For voice searches, short strings of words work best. Even in noisy cafes, most four-or five-word searches worked well during testing. Nicolaou said one misheard word won't necessarily throw off your search results.

Google has hinted at some future features incorporating voice and image recognition. Engineers are working to improve the ability to photograph a printed page so it can be accurately scanned into text and quickly translated into another language. In a video posted online, a Google employee scans a menu from a German restaurant and uses his phone to translate it into English.

Google also hopes that, eventually, travellers will be able to speak a phrase into their phone, have it translated into another language and played back through their phone's speaker.


This season, big handset makers including Nokia, Microsoft and Motorola are betting you’ll want to flaunt cute, palm-shaped devices that look more like compact powder cases than brick-shaped mini-tablets.

Motorola is likely to introduce a new phone next month called Flipout that will have a 2.8-inch display, a 3.1-megapixel camera and a twist-out keyboard. We haven’t tested it yet, but on looks alone, it’s fabulous, darling.

Motorola’s square-shaped phone follows the release of Microsoft’s fresh-looking Kin One earlier this month. The Kin One has a 2.6-inch display, a slide-out keyboard, and looks like a rounded square when closed. In September, Nokia introduced the Twist on Verizon, a squarish phone with a 2.5-inch display. Even LG has a square-shaped phone called the Lotus, which has been available on Sprint for more than a year, and though it’s not exactly been a big seller, its looks are hot, hot, hot.

Microsoft released the final version of the desktop Office 2010, along with which it made available a flavor aimed at mobile phones, namely Office Mobile 2010. The owners of a device powered by Windows Mobile 6.5 can now take advantage of the Word, Excel, and PowerPoint editing capabilities of the application while on the go.

Among the features that Office Mobile 2010 comes around with, we can count SharePoint integration (users can easily access and edit documents stored on a Microsoft SharePoint 2010 site), Bluetooth controller mode for PowerPoint presentations, access to SharePoint Workspace Mobile, the possibility to easily take notes on the phone and to insert voice clips or pictures in them, and others more.

“Effective today, Office Mobile 2010 will be available for free via Windows Phone Marketplace for all Windows Mobile 6.5 phones with a previous version of Office Mobile. People using Office Mobile 2010 can perform lightweight editing of Office documents and take notes on the go.

As if mobile phone cameras weren't complex enough, Sharp has just announced a tiny 720p 3D camera for its mobile devices.

The 3D Camera Module has been made to fit inside either a compact point and shoot or a smartphone. The camera is crammed full of the latest technology, all of which enable it to capture both moving and still high resolution 3D images.

Things like colour synchronising processing, as well as 'fast readout' technology, help the tiny little camera to produce its images.

Sharp has made use of complicated high-density mounting technology in order to pack so many features in to this tiny device.

The company insists that the cameras will go into mass production by the end of the year.