Coca-Cola unveiled a selfie-bottle: A camera attached to the bottom of a bottle that takes a picture once the bottle is tilted above 70 degrees and allows you to share these images on Snapchat, Instagram, and Facebook. The Coca-Cola selfie bottle (Source) In one way it is similar to Snap’s spectacles which went on sale last week; Both devices allow you to take pictures without having to hold your smartphone. The main difference, however, is that that selfie bottle takes pictures of yourself, with Snap’s glasses you photograph your environment. The selfie bottle is certainly a nice gadget, and whereas I doubt that Coca-Cola is going to push it as a commercial product, third-party manufacturers will make sure we see them next summer. Source of header image: http://thenextweb.com/gadgets/2016/11/17/coca-cola-selfie-bottle/
Month: December 2016
Overview of smart home remotes
Logitech Logitech has had universal remotes before the smart home was as much a topic as it is now. The firm has several versions in its portfolio such as the Harmony Elite or the Harmony Companion. Harmony Pro (Source) Also, similarly to the flic (see below) Logitech has a square-cut remote-button in its portfolio. It is called the Pop which can, for example, toggle the lights in your smart home by pressing the button. The Logitech Pop (Source) NEEO Neeo, a Swiss company founded in 2014, offers a remote controlled “Remote”. The remote itself and the “NEEO Brain” (the hub that connects all your smart home devices so that you can control them via the remote) cost $399. It was was founded through a Kickstarter was supposed to ship in the first half of 2015. However, shipping has not yet started. The NEEO Remote (Source) Savant The Savant remote costs $499 and comes, same as the NEEO, with a hub. In contrast to NEEO it is already available, but only ships to the U.S. The Savant remote and host (Source) sevenhugs The sevenhugs remote is a touch-screen only remote. What makes it unique is its position-based functionality. Instead of choosing which device you want to control you point at it with the remote. It is
Xiaomi’s troubles and how to solve them
The Chinese internet company Xiaomi was founded in 2010. In 2014 and 2015 it was amongst the top five (sometimes even top three) smartphone makers world wide. And with a valuation of over USD 46billion it is one of the world’s most valuable technology start-ups. Xiaomi might be known for its low-budget and stylish smartphones, targeting China’s middle class and its youth, but that is only part of what gave it that valuation. Investors believe that Xiaomi can build and ecosystem with its smartphones, smart home products and services consisting of games, apps and others. Its potential lies in bringing revenue through hardware-purchases as well as recurring purchases through services. Part of Xiaomi’s smart home portfolio (Source) Xiaomi’s portfolio represents that idea. Its offerings include a set-top box, rice cookers, a water and an air purifier, a drone, a fitness tracker,TVs, notebooks and a virtual reality headset as well as accessories such as power banks and audio devices. Xiaomi starts losing to competitors Ending 2015, however, it starting losing market share and ranks now below the top 5 smartphone producers. Instead of USD16 billion in sales revenues as predicted by the CEO Lei Jun, the company reached $12.5 billion, a miss of almost 13%.
Hearables are small computers and not headphones
Back in September, Apple introduced the Apple AirPods, a set of wireless earbuds, also known as hearables. And whereas hearables have existed before Apple’s AirPods their announcement has brought up interesting arguments about hearables in general. Concretely, users have repeatedly raised concerns about the following topics: They have a short battery life Earpiece unfitting for users’ ears Fear of losing them High price They have a short battery life Innovation often comes with some kind of behavioral change linked to costs. Besides learning costs (using a touchscreen after a feature phone), transaction costs (switching between cellular service providers), obsolescence costs (changing operating systems will make your old software useless) users encounter psychological costs. Psychological costs are associated with gains and losses. Consider, for example, the current state of electric cars. Through driving an electric car, you get a greener environment (your gain), but you lose the capability of long distance traveling (your loss). The same principle of gain and loss applies to hearables. Hearables have a short battery life; some only last for three hours. When using them, you gain, for instance, the comfort of cordless headphones, but, because you have to charge them, you lose the comfort of 24/7 availability. Consequently, a big issue for