February 2014 Posts

Major Tech Launches At Mobile World Congress

After CES, it’s the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona or MWC that serves as a all-around barrage belvedere for all the big names from the customer electronics space. ET brings you a aggregation of several fresh launches at MWC, best of which are accepted to adeptness our shores by mid 2014:

Androids with a Twist: Nokia’s X Series

Nokia still enjoys a fair bulk of cast recall, abnormally in arising markets. It’s no admiration again that they appear a fresh ambit of entry-level smartphones powered by Android. That actuality said, these are not your accepted bargain Android buzz – instead of the Play Store and the accepted Google services, they appear with Microsoft casework like Outlook mail, Actuality Maps and OneDrive instead. The X and X+ accept 4-inch screens while the XL has a 5-inch screen. They all action 3G with bifold SIM abutment and are powered by bifold amount processors. Expect sub Rs 10,000 prices for the X back it launches in April.

Samsung’s MWC Blitz: Galaxy S5 & Three Smartwatches

As expected, Samsung took the wraps off its best recent Galaxy S5 smartphone. Rather than an all-new phone, the S5 appearance several improvements compared to the S4 including a more good 16MP camera with faster autofocus, fingerprint scanner and affection amount sensor (a first), all powered by a 2.5Ghz cloister amount Snapdragon processor. Three fresh smartwatches additionally fabricated their debut: Gear 2, Gear 2 Neo and Gear Fit. The Gear 2 ambit now appearance changeable straps and is powered by the company’s own Tizen OS. The Fit appearance a arced OLED awning and is focused appear fitness. The Galaxy S5 will be authoritative its way over actuality in April for an estimated Rs 49,990.

Major Tech Launches At Mobile World Congress

Vast Improvements: Xperia Z2 & Z2 Tablet

Rather than acquaint absolutely fresh devices, Sony absitively to assignment bottomward and advance their flagship accessories in every way possible. Both abide baptize affidavit as afore and affection agnate designs. The Z2 smartphone offers ultra HD (4k) video recording alike admitting it uses the aforementioned 20.7 megapixel camera as its predecessor. The awning is hardly beyond (5.2-inch instead of 5) and it offers more good adverse and colours. It will be offered in assorted colours including black, white and purple. The Z2 book is alike thinner & lighter than before, appearance the aforementioned admeasurement 10.1-inch awning but bigger internals — 2.3Ghz cloister amount with 3GB RAM. Accumulator is 16GB, but it can be broadcast via micro SD. Like before, the Z2 book will be accessible in WiFi and WiFi + 3G/LTE versions.

Tablet on a Diet: MediaPad X1

Huawei has absolutely gone to work, redefining what a 7-inch Android should be like. Billed as the thinnest, lightest and narrowest 7-inch Android book around, the MediaPad X1 is aloof 7.18mm thick, has a bezel admeasurement of alone 2.99mm and weighs 239 grams. The accessory is attenuated abundant to be calmly captivated in one duke by best users. Despite the diminutive size, Huawei has arranged in a ample 5,000mAh battery, a 1920 x 1200 pixel 7inch IPS LCD, bifold cameras (13MP rear with LED beam + 5MP front) and 16GB (expandable) storage, all powered by a 1.6Ghz cloister amount processor and 2GB RAM. Huawei expects users to accumulate it as a primary device, so it additionally includes the adeptness to accomplish buzz calls. In an absorbing twist, you can use the X1 to allegation addition device, acknowledgment to the ample centralized battery. It should be priced amid Rs 25,000 to 30,000.

Scientists Set New Record for Data Transfer Rate

Researchers accept set a fresh almanac for abstracts manual over a multimode optical fibre – sending abstracts at a amount of 64 gigabits per second.

Researchers at the International Business Machines Corporation (IBM) beatific abstracts at a amount of 64 gigabits per additional (Gb/s) over a cable 57-metres-long application a blazon of laser alleged a vertical-cavity surface-emitting laser (VCSEL).

The accomplished amount was about 14 per cent faster than the antecedent almanac and about 2.5 times faster than the capabilities of today’s archetypal bartering technology, advisers said.

The accomplishment approved that the standard, absolute technology for sending abstracts over abbreviate distances should be able to accommodated the growing needs of servers, abstracts centers and supercomputers through the end of this decade, they said.

Scientists Set New Record for Data Transfer Rate

To accomplish such aerial speeds, the advisers acclimated the VCSEL lasers developed at Chalmers University of Technology in Sweden and custom silicon-germanium chips developed at IBM Research.

“The receiver dent is a different architecture that accompanying achieves speeds and sensitivities able-bodied above today’s bartering offerings,” said researcher Dan Kuchta of the IBM TJ Watson Research Center in Fresh York.

“The disciplinarian dent incorporates address equalisation, which widens the bandwidth of the optical link. While this adjustment has been broadly acclimated in electrical communication, it hasn’t yet bent on in optical communication,” he said.

“Researchers about await on a aphorism of deride that says the accessible data-transfer amount is about 1.7 times the bandwidth,” Kuchta explained.

“That agency that with the VCSEL laser, which has a bandwidth of about 26 GHz, the amount would be alone about 44 Gb/s,” he added.

The fast speeds alone formed for a ambit of 57 metres, so this technology is not advised for sending abstracts beyond continents. Instead, it’s best acceptable for transmitting abstracts aural a building, Kuchta said.

Panasonic, Tesla Motors consider joint car battery plant in US

Panasonic Corp (6752.T) is agreeable a cardinal of Japanese abstracts suppliers to accompany it in advance in a U.S. car array bulb that it affairs to body with Tesla Motors Inc (TSLA.O), with advance accepted to ability added than 100 billion yen ($979 million), the Nikkei reported.

Tesla shares additionally hit an best aerial on Tuesday afterwards one allowance close set a fresh ambition amount that appropriate shares would acceleration about 50 percent from Monday’s closing price.

The plant, accepted to go on-stream in 2017, will bolster Panasonic’s accumulation of lithium-ion batteries to the U.S. electric-car maker.

Last week, Tesla afford some ablaze on its affairs for architecture a lithium-ion array plant, or “giga factory,” that will cut array costs and acquiesce the aggregation to barrage a added affordable electric car in 2017. However, it said at the time that added capacity would be appear this week.

Tesla beneath to animadversion on Tuesday. Panasonic, the carmaker’s primary supplier of lithium-ion batteries, could not anon be accomplished for comment.

The U.S. plant, which will handle aggregate from processing raw abstracts to assembly, will aftermath small, failing batteries for Tesla and may additionally accumulation Toyota Motor Corp (7203.T) and added automakers, the Nikkei said.

Battery costs accept been a aloft barrier block to boundless electric car acceptance in the United States, according to analysts. Tesla’s giga branch will lower costs by alive material, cell, bore and backpack assembly to one spot.

In Tesla’s balance appointment alarm aftermost week, Chief Executive Elon Musk said the electric car maker expects to body the branch with added than one partner, but a “default assumption” was that Panasonic, as a accepted array corpuscle partner, “would abide to accomplice with us in the giga factory.”

“The branch is absolutely there to abutment the aggregate of the third bearing car,” Musk said on the call. “We appetite to accept the agent engineering and applique appear to accomplishment the aforementioned time as the giga factory. It is already allotment of one strategy, one accumulated effort.”

Panasonic, Tesla Motors consider joint car battery plant in US

Tesla acquaint better-than-expected fourth-quarter after-effects and said deliveries of its affluence Model S electric auto would billow added than 55 percent this year to added than 35,000 vehicles.

Shares in the Palo Alto, California-based company, which was founded in 2003, surged as abundant as 19 percent on Tuesday, hitting a fresh best aerial intraday trading amount of $259.20 a allotment afterwards Morgan Stanley aloft its ambition amount for the banal to $320 a allotment from $153.

Tesla shares were still up $30.50, or 14 percent, at $248.15 in afternoon trading on the Nasdaq.

Morgan Stanley analyst Adam Jonas said in his analysis agenda that the abeyant for lower array costs through college sales aggregate could about bifold Tesla’s allotment of the all-around car bazaar to 0.9 percent by 2028. Tesla charcoal the firm’s top aces in the U.S. auto area with an “overweight” rating.

“Tesla is an acutely aggressive aggregation for whom calamity the bazaar with fun-to-drive EVs and giving competitors a cephalalgia ability not be the endgame,” he said.

Stifel analyst James Albertine said the giga branch could be far added than an auto opportunity, as Tesla could accept an alike added cogent befalling to accumulation the activity accumulator market. He expects the branch would booty two to three years to body and crave a $5 billion to $6 billion basic infusion.

“While we abide abrogating on Tesla shares aloft $200 as an automotive OEM (original accessories manufacturer), the activity accumulator befalling requires a broader angle and could actual able-bodied absolve current, if not college appraisal levels,” he said in a analysis note.

Cornish Town Plans To Restore Its Energy Self-sufficiency By 2020

Before aerial apprehension and rain cut off the alternation band from London to the south-west, I travelled to Wadebridge in arctic Cornwall, breadth a accumulation of locals attack to the about-face aback the alarm and restore the town’s ability in energy.

The Wadebridge Renewable Activity Network (Wren) has affairs for the boondocks of 8,300 bodies to antecedent all its activity needs from aural the bounded breadth application renewables by 2020. It sounds aggressive but a hundred years ago the town’s electricity accumulation aggregation and gasworks provided for all its activity needs.

The centralisation and outsourcing of activity that has taken abode in the accomplished 50 years is an aberration, according to Stephen Frankel, who chairs Wren.

Since ambience up boutique two years ago, Wren has formed appear authoritative bounded activity the norm, alienated the blooming box that such projects are usually placed in. It has a boutique on the aerial artery breadth bounded bodies can get admonition about careful their homes and installing solar panels and biomass boilers. Consumers are additionally affiliated with vetted suppliers, and developers are helped to get the approvals they charge for ample developments.

The ultimate aim is for the association to own the technology that admiral the town, and it is affective appear bounded buying of all-embracing projects. This would acquiesce association to set their own tariffs and it would additionally beggarly the revenues from activity break aural the town.

According to calculations, about £12.8m is spent on activity in the boondocks anniversary year – a amount that is bifold the assets from tourism, which is the town’s capital trade. At the aforementioned time, 15-30% of its association alive in ammunition poverty. Wren believes that by creating a bounded activity bazaar it can abduction some, if not all, of that activity absorb and accumulate it aural the town. This would abate ammunition prices for association and, ultimately, clean the town’s bounded economy.

Cornish Town Plans To Restore Its Energy Self-sufficiency By 2020

As able-bodied as actuality arrogant in energy, Wadebridge was additionally a hub of addition in the 19th century. It congenital the third railway band in the world, and its bounded branch won all-embracing acclaim for its innovation.

A bounded activity bazaar in the 21st aeon congenital about micro and association generation, and acute energy, could animate the town’s aggressive spirit and actualize high-value jobs that will stop the activity revenues as able-bodied as bounded adolescent bodies from aperture from the town.

Cornwall charcoal one of the atomic areas in England, with 25% of its citizenry in ammunition poverty. Populations are abbreviating as adolescent bodies attending for jobs elsewhere. Yet the canton has some of the richest onshore and adopted accustomed assets for renewable activity in the UK, including added than 400 afar of coastline.

Cornwall board is alive carefully with Wren and added bounded organisations to use these assets to animate the county’s fortunes. Its Acute Cornwall action is acknowledging Wadebridge to become a Acute Bazaar town, creating a testbed for fresh acute activity technologies which can be exported about the world.

Wadebridge’s railway band has continued aback gone and the boondocks is now six afar from the end of the capital band route. If it didn’t feel cut off afore the contempo bad acclimate and the cease of the line, it will do now.

Local day-tripper operators in the south-west of England are already ciphering accident of amid £1m-2m a day to bounded economies from the disruption. But the town, and Cornwall as whole, are demography aggressive accomplish to move in a fresh direction, application the assets they accept to addition their aggressiveness and put themselves durably aback on the map.

Samsung unveils water and dust resistant Galaxy S5 with heart-rate monitor

Samsung on Tuesday appear the Galaxy S5, its fresh flagship Android smartphone with an Apple iPhone 5S-like biometric sensor button. The buzz is dust and water-resistant, sports a faster camera and offers fitness-related features.

The Galaxy S5, which was apparent at the Adaptable World Congress in Barcelona, Spain, will be accessible in 150 countries, including India, on April 11. However, the aggregation did not advertise the amount of the fresh smartphone.

It sports a hardly beyond 5.1-inch Super AMOLED (1080 X 1920p) affectation which looks agnate to that of the Galaxy S4.

Powered by a 2.5GHz quad-core processor and 2GB RAM, the Galaxy S5 will appear in 16GB and 32GB centralized accumulator variants, which will be abundant up to 64GB through microSD card.

“With the Galaxy S5, Samsung is activity aback to basics to focus on carrying the capabilities that amount best to our consumers,” said JK Shin, admiral and arch of IT & adaptable communications analysis at Samsung. “Galaxy S5 represents an iconic architecture with capital and advantageous appearance to focus on carrying the ultimate smartphone in the bazaar today through bodies aggressive innovation.”

While acknowledging the bazaar babble about lesser-than-expected sales of Galaxy S4, Shin appear that Samsung had so far awash over 200 actor units of Galaxy S alternation phones. Galaxy S4 was launched in the summertime of 2013. It has faced boxy antagonism from the brand of Apple iPhone 5 and 5S, LG G2, HTC One and Sony Xperia Z1.

Usually, Samsung launches flagship Galaxy buzz every year afterwards World Adaptable Congress (MWC). But, this year, the aggregation appear Galaxy S5 at the MWC because it wants to alter Galaxy S4 as anon as possible.

Samsung unveils water and dust resistant Galaxy S5 with heart-rate monitor

In Galaxy S5, Samsung has alien several altered appearance aimed at fettle acquainted users in a bid to abduct Apple’s thunder. It is broadly rumoured that the iPhone maker will barrage the almsman of iPhone 5S with a clamp of bloom and fitness-related features.

“With the added S Bloom 3.0, the Galaxy S5 offers added accoutrement to advice bodies break fit and well. It provides a absolute claimed fettle tracker to advice users adviser and administer their behaviour, forth with added tools, including a pedometer, diet and exercise records, and a new, congenital affection amount monitor,” said a Samsung spokesperson.

“Galaxy S5 users can added adapt their acquaintance with an accomplished third affair app ecosystem and the adeptness to brace with next-generation Gear articles for real-time fettle coaching,”

Another highlight of the buzz is a fresh iPhone-like fingerprint sensor chip with the phone’s home button. The feel scanner will action a biometric screen-locking affection and adaptable acquittal acquaintance to consumers.

The Galaxy S5 sports a 16MP rear camera and a 2.1MP front-facing camera. The rear camera is able of capturing 4K video at 30 frames per second. Samsung claimed the Galaxy S5 offers the world’s fastest auto-focus acceleration up to 0.3 seconds.

The smartphone runs on Android 4.4.2 KitKat, the most recent adaptation of Google’s adaptable operating system. It is IP67 certified dust and water-resistant. The aback console of the buzz sports a biconcave soft-touch cover, agnate to the Nexus 7(2012) tablet.

In agreement of connectivity options, the Galaxy S5 offers Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n and ac, Bluetooth 4.0, USB 3.0, NFC and InfraRed. The buzz supports a ample cardinal of 4G LTE abundance bands with LTE Category 4 standard. It comes with accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, barometer, RGB ambient light, Gesture (IR), and affection amount sensors.

The buzz packs in 2800mAh array with a claimed standby time of 390 hours and allocution time of 21 hours. It will be accessible in four altered colours: charcoal black, shimmery white, electric dejected and chestnut gold.

Along with Galaxy S5, the aggregation additionally appear the Gear Fit, a fresh fettle band. David Park, a chief Samsung executive, said, “Gear Fit is for bodies who appetite the functionality of Gear 2 smartwatch, but in the admeasurement of a fettle band.”