Typing in your password every time you want to unlock your Mac sucks. Apple still hasn’t added facial ID recognition to OS X, nor have we heard nary a mention of Touch ID coming to MacBooks, but if you’re looking for a neat way to quickly unlock your Mac, a new app called Knock allows you do it with two quick taps on your iPhone screen.
The free Mac app works in tandem with an iPhone app that turns your phone into an authentication device. Knock uses Bluetooth Low Energy to communicate from iPhone to Mac but you should be able to leave it on all day without draining battery.
The people behind Vybe are calling it a “smart bracelet,” because it’s missing a key element included in all smartwatches: the screen. Instead of relaying information through a display, Vybe vibrates, nagging you to look at your phone.
A device that repeatedly requires halting your current activity seems to defeat its own purpose — namely, untethering you from your phone. It’s also strange that Vybe’s promotional clip suggests you pick up your phone while driving, which is illegal in many states — including California, where WearVybe, the bracelet’s maker, is based.
Fitbit has today announced its new fitness tracker, the Force, which combines all of the features found in the original Fitbit Flex with some of the more advanced features found in the Fitbit One tracker. It costs $129.95, slightly more than the $99 Flex, and it’s available today.
“With irritating regularity, my girlfriend and I dance the same dance. She, or I, go to bed with our iPhones. She, or I, lose it somewhere within the ocean of the bedfolds. She, or I, find ourselves apoplectic. She, or I, demands that the other calls the phone to locate. And then she, or I, realize that we’ve lost our phone too. And then we murder each other into a spattering of bloody chunks in our festering rage, somehow to reconstitute ourselves, temporarily find our iPhones and begin this amphisbaena dance anew.”
The guys behind HipKey, a keychain dongle that can track your iPhone (and vice versa), were paying attention, and so they sent me over a unit for review. I’m not sure it’s revolutionized my life, but it sure has simplified it: now, instead of constantly worrying about misplacing my keys or my iPhone, I only have to worry about misplacing both at the same time.
LAS VEGAS, CES 2013 – What do a four-rotor, remotely-piloted vehicle, touch-screen car audio and a little, Bluetooth-armed facsimile of a plant stem have in common? Not much. Yet they’re all concoctions from French-based Parrot; the latter is their newest gadget, a sensor-laden gardening device they’ve named the Flower Power.
For all intents and purposes the latest, 7th generation iPod nano is nothing new. We’ve seen it all before: the widescreen form factor, the touchscreen display. What is new is that we’ve never seen these features in this configuration.
That’s what paradoxically makes the 2012 iPod nano the best one yet: it’s an agglomeration of the best features of the nanos that came before.
It is as though the best features of all previous generations of this protean device are refined and combined into this latest “Lucky Seventh” iteration. Now the iPod nano is the right height, the right shape, the right screen size, the right colors, and perfectly simple. It is what the iPod nano was always meant to be — a good-looking, on-the-go music player.
There really aren’t that many home automation products that blow my mind, but Lockitron has got me drooling. I want to live in the future. A place where my cellphone is the only thing I need to carry with me. I hate carrying keys, and Lockitron just might help me ditch them completely with its simple keyless entry beauty that’s something out of Star Wars or Minority Report or any other sci-fi movie.
Apple neglected to give its iPod line any real attention last year, and so it seems likely the devices will receive a much-anticipated refresh before the holidays. Still, we’ve seen little evidence of this, but one German rewards club has promised that there will be a new iPod nano this fall, and that the “old” model is no longer available from Apple.
Wahoo's low-power sensor should last as long as a regular cyclocomputer.
There are probably hundreds of apps that will turn your iPhone into a mobile fitness device, using the phone’s GPS to track your speed and from there derive calories burned, route taken and so on. Some of them even connect wirelessly through a dongle to heart-rate monitors and the like. It’s like having a coach in your pocket, only he doesn’t wake you up in the morning by shouting at you.
Now, though, things are going to the next level. Wahoo’s new Blue SC speed and cadence sensor talks direct to the iPhone via low-powered Bluetooth 4, letting it communicate directly with your bike.