Gadgets this week: Eye-tracking VR headset to WaveKat…
Smartphones are getting smarter and users getting more connected. For those who want to get your homes and appliances hooked on to smartphones and are not hesitant to try out soldering and a bit of basic electrical work, Switcheroo promises to get you connected for just $27. And for those who simply do not want to be connected, a new project on Kickstarter promises to take users back to the basics with a feature phone that can only make calls and nothing else.
On the other end we have the new kids on the block - the VR headsets that are gaining centre stage. The latest one comes with an eye tracking feature. Read on:
Fove – eye-tracking VR headset
Virtual reality headsets are getting into the mainstream sooner than expected dispelling fears that it could go the way the Google Glass did.
Facebook has already announced that it plans to retail the Oculus Rift starting 2016.
Fove, a new startup has come out with what could well be the world`s first eye tracking virtual reality headset. Users will be able to control the device using their eyes simply by staring, focusing or blinking at it.
For gaming enthusiasts, the device could become very handy as they will soon be able to navigate, shoot without their hands.
The device reads eye movements to allow more precise control in video games, enabling users to target, aim and shoot with true line-of-sight targeting. Even the scenery will blur and sharpens according to the part of the screen you are focusing. Users will be able to look laugh, and communicate with virtual characters just like in the real world.
The device also enabled head tracking. The high resolution display offers 00 degree field of view is PC compatible and users will even be able to convert existing VR games and develop more advanced features.
The project has already raised $273,267 of the $250,000 goal. You can still pre-order a device for $349 as part of the early bird offer. The device is expected to deliver in May 2016.
WaveKat – the ultimate toy for watersport enthusiasts
This is for the water sports enthusiasts. Imagine if you could go-kart on water – the latest version of WaveKat P70 lets you do just that. The watercraft is able to perform 90º turns while continuing at high speed of 35+ knots (65kph).
The asymmetric catamaran hull, the manufacturers say will help provide stability, speed and control in waves or flat water.
What`s more you don’t need to be a pro to master the driving. All you need to do is get into it and start driving. It comes with a foot throttle and steering when controls.
Ideal for beach resorts and water sport companies, it can also be bought by individuals and is priced at $22,500.
Switcheroo – creating a smart home for just $27
This gadget can turn every other device into a connected device. You no more need to spend thousands of dollars to convert your home into a smart home. All you will need is a $29 connecter that will enable you to control toys, unlock doors, start your car, turn on lights, open or close the garage door, even control your AC or heating system and upgrade any device with a pushbutton.
All you need to do is to connect the switchboard of anything that has a switch to open or start to a switcheroo and it will use the circuit to take the place of that switch or act in concert with it, upgrading these devices to allow direct smartphone control.
The Switcheroo has 4 outputs that can switch DC voltages from 2 to 24 volts, up to 150mA of current per output. “For AC voltages or higher current applications you can connect relays or solid state switching ICs to Switcheroo and do even more,” the developers of the product noted.
Switcherro connects to your smartphone using Bluetooth and, therefore, you have to currently be within the range to be able to actuate the functions using your smartphone.
What`s more, a switcheroo can operate on a single coin cell battery for up to a year or connected to a regulator.
Users can either create an open mode whereby anyone will be able to connect to the Switcheroo and control any of the outputs or create a closed secure mode whereby outputs can only be controlled after sending an authorized access code.
The project currently on Kickstarter has raised $12,853 of its $18,000 goal.
The Light Phone – the phone away from phones
The Light Phone is another Kickstarter project that promises to provide you a calling experience that no other smartphones can do – distraction free. That’s possible simply because the phone can only be used to making calls and nothing else.
“We are not creating technology; we are using the best existing technology in a new way. we have stripped away everything but the phone itself,” developers Joe Hollier and Kaiwei Tang said.
It’s a credit card-sized phone that easily fits into your wallet and “designed to be used as little as possible…..” the description adds.
The device has a volume control, a simple LED screen display, a slot for mini SIM card, a micro USB port and a speaker and a microphone and weighs about 38.5 grams.
The battery obviously lasts for almost 20 days. The device is, however, priced at$100 and is expected to ship by May 2016.
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