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Nokia dials for wearables

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Nokia plans to buy french health and wearable company, Withings S.A. for EUR 170 million. Withings is a pioneer in the connected health revolution,<!–more–> with a family of award-winning digital health products and services to help people all over the world lead healthier, happier and more productive lives. Withings will be part of our Nokia Technologies business.

“We have said consistently that digital health was an area of strategic interest to Nokia, and we are now taking concrete action to tap the opportunity in this large and important market. With this acquisition, Nokia is strengthening its position in the Internet of Things in a way that leverages the power of our trusted brand, fits with our company purpose of expanding the human possibilities of the connected world, and puts us at the heart of a very large addressable market where we can make a meaningful difference in peoples’ lives.” said Rajeev Suri, president & CEO of Nokia.

World Health Organization figures show cardiovascular disease as today’s number one cause of death, with more than a billion adults around the world living with uncontrolled hypertension. Diabetes now affects more than one in twelve adults worldwide, a four-fold increase since 1980. Healthcare is expected to be one of the largest vertical markets in the Internet of Things, with analysts forecasting that mobile health, with a CAGR of 37%, will be the fastest growing health care segment from 2015-2020.

Withings_1The combination of innovative products from Withings and the Digital Health business will also ensure the ongoing renewal of Nokia Technologies’ world class IPR portfolio.

“Since we started Withings, our passion has been in empowering people to track their lifestyle and improve their health and wellbeing,” said Cédric Hutchings, CEO of Withings. “We’re excited to join Nokia to help bring our vision of connected health to more people around the world.”

The Nokia brand continues to be recognized, valued and trusted by consumers, built on a heritage of beautifully designed, innovative and reliable technology in the service of people around the world to help real human needs.

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Shure Launches AONIC FREE True Wireless Sound Isolating Earphones

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Shure is unveiling the latest addition to its AONIC listening portfolio—AONIC FREE True Wireless Sound Isolating Earphones. Following up on the heels of the launch of AONIC 215 GEN 2, the AONIC FREE earphones introduce a new hook-free, pocketable design and unite it with the same unmatched studio-quality sound that artists, audiophiles, commuters, technophiles, and music lovers have relied on from Shure’s AONIC line. AONIC FREE boasts top-notch call performance in a sleek, lightweight, and compact design with long-lasting battery life, meaning these earphones are ready for an on-the-go lifestyle and the adventure that lies ahead.

Engineered from decades of experience supporting legendary performers, AONIC FREE provides clear, studio-quality sound with deep bass. This class-leading sound is powered by a premium amplifier and driver combination that was rigorously tested and tuned together—providing an unparalleled listening experience tailored to user preferences. In a world where personalization is expected, listeners can express their musical identity by customizing their audio experience with the ShurePlus Play app’s custom multi-band EQ and pre-sets.

Whether commuting to work or tuning out the drone of an airplane engine as you get ready to take off, exceptional Sound Isolation Technology is incorporated, blocking out most environmental noise. To hear immediate surroundings, Environmental Mode activates exterior microphones with just the press of a button—now users can hear traffic while traversing a busy city.

Notable key features and benefits include:

  • Sound Isolation TechnologyBased on in-ear monitors worn by musicians for hours at a time on stage, AONIC FREE’s combination of a foam sleeve and an ergonomically angled design comfortably block up to 37dB while providing a distortion-free, secure fit for use all day long. 
  • Long-Lasting Battery LifeWith 21 total hours of playback, your epic playlist has met its match. The earbuds provide seven hours of listening with two full additional charges from the pocket-friendly carrying case. A fast charge feature provides one hour of playback after only 15 minutes in the case. The case’s form factor was designed to transport easily, so users will never be without a charge.
  • Crystal Clear Phone CallsAONIC Free makes it easy to navigate calls no matter the circumstance. With strategically placed mics with beamforming Digital Sound Processing (DSP) that intelligently picks up just your voice, Autogain Control that reduces the volume of music while on a call, and noise suppression technology that blocks wind noise, your voice is heard – not the surrounding environment.  
  • Optimal UsabilityUsers have the freedom to customize volume, playback, and call control with a single press on either the left or right earbud. Button function can also be customized in the ShurePlus Play App.
  • Customizable EQWhen paired with the free ShurePlus PLAY App, listeners can personalize Environment Mode levels. Available for iOS and Android, the app is also a full-featured music player with EQ, supporting standard and hi-res music files. In addition to the feature controls, it lets users customize tone and voice prompts for important notifications, like power on/off, connection confirmation, and low battery.

AONIC FREE features Bluetooth 5 and supports multiple audio codecs, including aptX, AAC, and SBC. Shure’s True Wireless Sound Isolating Earphones, AONIC FREE, are now available in Graphite Grey. Purchase includes the earphones, a fit kit with Comply foam sleeves in S/M/L, pocketable charging case, and USB-C charging cable.

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Review: Logitech MX Keys Mini

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If you are a content creator, you know how important the right keyboard and mouse are. It can either make or break your entire workflow. Logitech is a brand that understands all of that and it kept that thought in mind when it set out to create a perfect keyboard for content creators.

Say “Hello!” to the Logitech MX Keys Mini. It’s the best wireless keyboard I have used in recent years. Featuring a minimalist design, the MX Keys Mini offers the best features of the standard-sized MX Keys, minus the Num pad. While the MX Keys Mini costs the same as the full-sized MX Keys keyboard, at $99.99, it also brings in lots of bells and whistles to make that investment worthwhile.

For starters, the MX Keys Mini includes a dedicated emoji key that offers relief to all the social media enthusiasts out there on the market. The emoji key also offers access to GIFs (powered by Tenor), Kaomojis, symbols, and the clipboard history. You also get a voice dictation key and a mic mute key that mutes on a system level.

In addition, there are a bunch of media control buttons such as play/pause, volume up and down, and mute. One of the features I really loved on this keyboard is its proximity sensors. These detect your hands and then illuminate the keyboard the moment your fingers approach the keys.

The backlit keys also automatically adjust to lighting conditions and turn off when you step away. Since the MX Keys Mini runs on built-in rechargeable batteries, this feature can increase the battery life of the keyboard. Charging the keyboard isn’t an issue – it uses a Type-C port to get charged.

According to Logitech, the MX Keys Mini stays powered up to 10 days on a full charge, or up to 5 months with the backlighting turned off. For this review, we used the MX Keys Mini for over two weeks and we still didn’t need a recharge. The keyboard also easily pairs wirelessly to up to three devices at a time via Bluetooth Low Energy.

The keyboard can also connect to PCs and Macs through the Logi Bolt USB receiver. This receiver, however, is not bundled with the keyboard and is to be purchased separately for a price of $14.99. The receiver can connect to up to 6 devices and offers a wireless range of 33 feet (10 meters).

Using the keyboard felt so good. The Perfect Stroke keys are very fluid and accurate and are very easy to hit. The overall build quality is very good, too. Logitech has used premium materials to build the keyboard and it shows. Even though the keyboard is small, it does have a heft to it and that itself is reassuring. The backlighting is also bright and the overall layout is very familiar.

For a price of $99.99, the Logitech MX Keys Mini isn’t a cheap keyboard. It also isn’t a keyboard for everyone. However, if you appreciate extra features on a keyboard that gell well with your overall workflow, you will like the MX Keys Mini. The Logitech MX Keys Mini thus walks away with the Gadget Voize Editors’ Choice award.

Price: $99.99

Logitech MX Keys Mini $99.99
  • Final Rating
4

Summary

For starters, the MX Keys Mini includes a dedicated emoji key that offers relief to all the social media enthusiasts out there on the market. The emoji key also offers access to GIFs (powered by Tenor), Kaomojis, symbols, and the clipboard history. You also get a voice dictation key and a mic mute key that mutes on a system level.

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Sony Launches the new XAV-AX3200 In-Car Entertainment System

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Sony has launched the new XAV-AX3200 in-car entertainment system. An array of smart features is embedded in the XAV-AX3200 for a better in-car connectivity experience – navigation, entertainment, and communication. The XAV-AX3200 further enhances in-car entertainment with the addition of an auxiliary A/V input that allows smooth connection with more audio-video sources, making every car ride even more enjoyable.

Key Features of the XAV-AX3200 Media Receiver

  • 9.5-inch display – Features lighter touch operation and improved visibility with an anti-glare touchscreen as well as space-saving installation with a single-DIN rear chassis
  • Auxiliary A/V Input – The rear connection terminal includes a 3.5mm audio and video input to hook up an external audio/video device such as a TV tuner, DVD player, game console, and more.
  • Apple CarPlay – Apple CarPlay integrates iPhone with the car audio’s display and controls, enabling users to make phone calls, access music, send and receive messages, get directions optimized for traffic, and more while the driver stays focused on the road. Supporting third-party navigation apps, Apple CarPlay provides even more choices to get to the destination.
  • Android Auto – Designed with safety and convenience in mind, Android Auto is a simpler way to use a smartphone with the car’s display. Drivers can stay connected, entertained, and informed while keeping their eyes on the road. Just press the voice control button on the AX3200.
  • WebLink Cast – WebLink is a lightweight app delivery platform designed especially for in-vehicle use. Using an Android or iOS device connection, it can mirror a smartphone screen right on the car audio display to offer reliable, responsive infotainment.
  • Rearview Camera with Adjustable Parking Guidelines – Use the connected rearview camera when shifting the vehicle’s transmission lever to the reverse position or simply tap the Rear Camera icon on the home screen.
  • Quick Wake Up –Drivers are ready to go right after turning on the ignition.
  • Sound Optimization – Digital Sound Processing (DSP) enables drivers to make adjustments while creating a sound field ideal for the inside of vehicles. The Dynamic Stage Organizer (DSO) creates an ambient sound as if there were speakers on the dashboard. The 10-band equalizer (EQ10) with 10 presets offers easy and effective frequency adjustment for various listening environments.
  • FLAC Audio File Compatible – Free Lossless Audio Codec (FLAC) compresses without any loss in quality. It can playback FLAC files with up to 24-bit depth and sampling frequency at 48 kHz.
  • 3-Pre Out – For future expandability, the 3-pre out connectivity allows you to build a full acoustic system including a subwoofer, a mono amplifier, and 4-channel amplifier for even louder and powerful sound reproduction.

The XAV-AX3200 is now available across the Middle East and Africa region.

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