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Hands-free

The eye-controlled earphones developed by DoCoMo could revolutionize the way we control ou...

The Japanese wireless carrier NTT DoCoMo has recently developed and demonstrated a peculiar pair of headphones that can precisely detect a user's eye movements without a camera, and use those movements to control electronic devices such as mobile phones and portable music players. DoCoMo started working on this idea back in 2008 by adapting an electrooculogram (EOG), a medical device used for measuring eye response, to their purposes. An EOG works on the principle that the human cornea has a positive electrical charge. As the user looks to the left or right, the charge shifts in the space between the user's ears – a change that can be easily detected by appropriate sensors.  Read More

The Bringrr cell phone reminder

As some readers may recall, back in April a certain prototype iPhone was “forgotten” in a bar, and ended up being prematurely splashed all over the Internet. Well, that whole nasty business would likely never have happened, if only that phone’s owner had been using a Bringrr. A little device that plugs into your car’s power outlet/cigarette lighter, the Bringrr gets paired up with your cell phone, then searches for that phone whenever the car is started. If it makes a connection, meaning that the phone is in the car, it will flash blue and emit a confirming beep. If it can’t find the phone, however, it will flash red and emit a tone that pretty much says, “Hey Dummy, you forgot your phone.”  Read More

Kisai Escape C

Hands-free calling using Bluetooth earpieces has become - shall we say - controversial over the years, as we've all seen that annoying guy at Starbucks trying to close the deal as he orders his cappuccino. But the latest receiver from Tokyo Flash, the Kisai Escape C, might just have enough features to offset the Bluetooth douche-factor.  Read More

Zoomsafer's VoiceMate software allows users to send and receive messages via voice recogni...

It’s no secret that a distracted driver is a hazardous one. In-car mobile phone safety technology manufacturer Zoomsafer has announced an extension of its existing software named VoiceMate that allows drivers to audibly send and receive emails and text messages while keeping their attention focused on the road ahead.  Read More

The Kia UVO in-car infotainment system

In addition to its recent 7-year / 150,000km warranty announcement, Kia has created further interest with the showing of its UVO in-car voice and touch activated communication and entertainment system. Developed in collaboration with Microsoft, the system offers users an easy to use interactive hands-free alternative that uses speech recognition for making and taking calls, sending text messages and managing in-car music. Featuring a 4.3” full color touchscreen display and built-in 1GB storage with the ability to rip CD’s and MP3’s onto the system’s “Jukebox”, the open platform UVO system also doubles as a rear view camera when the vehicle is in reverse.  Read More

The Tele Scouter prototype wearable retinal display

The days of a Universal Translator like the one that made chatting between alien species a non-issue in Star Trek might be some way off yet. But a new device from NEC is definitely a step in the right direction for those of us on planet Earth looking for a way to communicate with other language speakers that doesn’t involve a human translator or a well-thumbed phrase book. The prototype device called a “Tele Scouter” is a glasses type display that translates the foreign language being spoken by a partner and projects the translation onto a tiny retinal display.  Read More

TXTBlocker helps to prevent dangerous distractions while driving

It should come as no surprise to hear that texting while driving is a particularly dangerous thing to do. Recent studies have shown that drivers are 23 times more likely to get into an accident if they are texting and an astonishing 46% of teens have admitted occurrences of driving while distracted as a result of fiddling with phones. A new product called TXTBlocker addresses these issues directly by disabling a number of phone functions, with the specific impact decided by a choice of settings available from an account page online once you subscribe.  Read More

A removable front panel on the Parrot RKi4800 allows you to store and recharge your iPod/i...

Parrot has released a car stereo at IAA designed for iPhones and iPods. The Rki8400 uses Bluetooth, has a USB port for hard drives or USB keys, SD Card reader and a double line-in socket for analogue sources. It provides hands-free telephony functions and another great feature is a storage compartment behind the removable front panel that hides and recharges your iPod or iPhone. That means no more cords tangling around gear shifts, or iPhones sliding around the vehicle during braking or cornering maneuvers. Plus, of course, a bit of extra security.  Read More

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