Apple Watch could use heart rate sensor to ID you

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The Apple Watch will monitor your pulse, speed and pace; but there's no sensor to measure how much weight you can lift.
Your pulse may one day unlock your Apple Watch.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Future versions of the Apple Watch may be able to identify owners just by taking their pulse.

Apple was awarded a patent this week that details the use of biometrics on a smartwatch that can identify the user based on their heart rate and other variables. All without the users having to make any input.

Gadget roundup: New gear for photogs, travelers and pencil pushers

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Sony RX-100 III

Sony’s new RX-100 III takes the best pocket camera in the world and makes it even better. Now the 20MP shooter packs a pop-up OLED viewfinder, a faster ƒ1.8-2.8 maximum aperture across the 28-100 zoom range, a new 180-degree flip-up selfie-ready screen and “full-sensor readout 1080p.” There’s even Wi-Fi so you can post the results to Instagram. $800

Large Desk Organizer

The Etsy Large Desk Organizer is fashioned from solid oak, magnets and style. It has slots for everything, from paperclips to paper to iPhones, and the two-part modular design even lets you split it up for more versatility. And all this for just (cough) [$216](Large Desk Organizer).

Tens Sunglasses

Tens shades are like Instagram filters for your eyes. They come in four colorways, and the lenses add a tint to the world outside. If they really were a filter, I’d describe that filter as adding saturation, upping the punch like a polarizer and adding a yellow-green tint. In fact, the extra contrast looks like it might be useful when riding a bike. Available in June, pre-orders via Indiegogo. $60

Vulpine Merino Wool Jersey

I’m all over this merino wool jersey. Or rather, I’d like it to be all over me. UK maker Vulpine has tweaked its classic bike jersey to make it even better. It has a button-up collar, a reflective strip on the rear zip-up pocket and is cut long at the back to fit cyclists. And becasue it’s merino wool it won’t stink even after an all-day ride, it’ll stay cool or warm, and it’ll dry quickly. £85/$143

Rickshaw Sutro backpack

Rickshaw makes my favorite bags. Now the friendly San Franciscans bring us a new backpack, the Sutro. It has padded straps, a splashproof zipper, a pocket on the front and a kind of hybrid folding/roll-top closure that lets you overload it when you need to, or carry extra tall objects. Inside is a laptop sleeve, and outside is you choice of custom fabrics and colors. $225.

Waterfield Outback Duffel

My other favorite bag maker is also in SF – Waterfield designs. The Outback Duffel is a waxed-canvas (or ballistic nylon) and leather carry bag with a big main compartment and pockets all over everywhere else. It comes in two sizes, and also tow configurations – the Double Compartment variant is split lengthwise into two spaces for better organization. Perfect for travel. $219

Nikon Underwater Speedlight

Nikon’s new underwater flash lights up the undersea world for you Nikon 1 camera (which you have hopefully stowed inside a waterproof housing). Use it on manual or auto down to 100 meters (328 feet) and use it off camera with a fiber-optic cable and mounted on an optional underwater bracket. $750

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Fresh photographic equipment stole the show this week, but we also got wind of some great new outdoor gear (and some stuff for desk jockeys).

First the camera news: Sony is coming on strong with the amazing R100 III camera, while Nikon’s most exciting new gadget is an underwater flash. On the outdoorsy front, San Francisco is gearing up for summer with new bags from my favorite bag makers Rickshaw and Waterfield, and if you’re out in the warm/cold spring on your bike, you might like to do it wearing the beautiful Vulpine merino wool cycling jersey. If you’re not the outdoors type, we have you covered too — you can stay home and organize your desk with a handsome wooden pen and phone holder.

Have fun!

Get Incredible Sound Anywhere With The Powerful 2.3-oz. PULSE Bluetooth Speaker [Deals]

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Finally, a Bluetooth® speaker made for on-the-go lifestyles. With an integrated omnidirectional microphone, The PULSE combines music-playing and conference-calling capabilities in a palm-sized package.

Weighing in at only 2.3 ounces, it attaches almost anywhere with the included clip – backpacks, seatbelts, pockets – so it’s always available, but never in the way. And for a limited time you can get it for just $79.99 – a savings of 19% – courtesy of Cult of Mac Deals!

Pulse Is A Tiny Touch-Screened Fitness Tracker With Smart iOS Support [Review]

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Ready for night or day: Withings' Pulse
Ready for night or day: Withings' Pulse

Connected gadgets are the hotness in tech right now. It seems like everyone is trying to track your activity during the day and your sweet sweet R.E.M.’s during the dark of night.

Pulse by Withings
Category: Fitness
Works With: iPhone, iPod Touch
Price: $100

Withings, makers of the Smart Scale and other connected tech., is now ready to join the world of fitness tracking with their new Pulse—a teensy little thing—which tracks your daily steps, pulse, sleep, and with its built-in sensors, even the altitudes you traverse. But there’s more to the story here than basic tracking; with historic data available on its touch-enabled screen and astute iOS integration via the Withings app, the Pulse is a talented first offering from Withings, and an easy fitness tracker to recommend.

LinkedIn Launches Redesigned Apps For Android & iOS

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LinkedIn has rolled out new apps for Android and iOS that boast brand new designs, faster navigation, and new features. Users will now find an increased focus on their news stream, with conversations, network updates, and more now front and center. The update even comes with a fancy new demonstration video; check it out below.

iOS News Reader Pulse Makes Its Way To The Mac Via New HTML5 Web App

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There have always been two top players in the news reader app market: Flipboard and Pulse. Both started on the iPad and later made their way to the iPhone and Android OS. While Pulse may not always receive as much attention as Flipboard, the app is still beloved by many.

Fans of Pulse will be happy to learn that the free service has made its way to the desktop in the form of a slick, new HTML5 web app.

The iPad Is Revolutionizing How We Read And Consume News

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iPad owners are more likely to read news and prefer to get their news on their devices instead of in print or on TV.
iPad owners are more likely to read news and prefer to get their news via the iPad instead of in print or on TV.

A recent Reynolds Journalism Institute study indicates that the iPad is becoming a primary vehicle for many users to consume (read, listen to, or watch) daily local, national, and world news and that it is leading a revolution in terms of how frequently people read news as well as how much news they read on a daily or weekly basis.

The survey noted that the iPad is the preferred large media tablet on the market with news consumers surveyed with an 88% share of that market. The Kindle Fire was the top pick among small media tablets with 68% of the news consumer market. The iPhone was the overall preferred smartphone with 39% of the news consumer market.

It also noted that the iPad (and other large tablet devices) seem to be encouraging news reading among all demographics including young adults. Among young adults (18 – 24 years old), 67% read news on one or more mobile devices and averaged five hours of news reading/consumption per week. Among young adults with iPads, 84% read news on their device(s) for an average of 7.3 hours per week.

Read It Later Becomes Pocket: Gets More Features, Goes Free

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If you liked Read It Later, you'll love Pocket. And so will your wallet.

Read It Later, the most popular way for users to save content they find on the web, has just received a new name, stacks of new features, and lost its price tag in a major update released today. Now called Pocket, the new app is free across Android and iOS devices, and delivers a new user interface, video and image filters, favorites, and much, much more.