AccessoLife Selfie

Selfie Sticks Banned

Sorry selfie and tennis fans, you’re going to have to go without your Selfie Stick when talking pictures of yourselves eating your strawberries and cream at Wimbledon this year.

The Wimbledon Tennis Championship organisers have warned anyone attending the upcoming event that under no circumstances will Selfie Sticks be allowed into the grounds.  There seems to be a developing trend as many museums and sports grounds alike have begun to ban the use of the popular photo taking accessory.

AccessoLife Selfie

The All England Lawn Tennis Club ticket holders’ guide said: “In common with many other major sports and entertainment events and cultural attractions, the championships will not allow selfie sticks into the grounds.”

The move is being made primarily so it doesn’t interfere with spectators enjoyment of the event but also “nuisance factor” associated with the accessory itself. Come on guys, where is all the love gone for the once mighty Selfie Stick?

AccessoLife Selfie

English football club Tottenham Hotspur have banned the accessory from their football ground following a complaint from a fan. Popular global tourist attractions such as Palace of Versailles in Paris, the Colosseum in Rome and The Smithsonian Museum Group in the USA have also made the decision to ban Selfie Sticks. Many venues are now placing Selfie Sticks into the ‘Tripod’ category which have been banned for quite some time.

AccessoLife Selfie

Apologies Selfie lovers, you’re going to have to use the normal length of your arms to take your beloved self portraits. #FirstWorldProblems. It could always be worse…you could be this guy

AccessoLife Selfie

AccessoTech Augmented Reality Mini Glasses

Mini Produce New Augmented Reality Glasses

Car manufacturer Mini has produced a set of augmented reality glasses which will give the user a HUD (Head Up Display)! They will be able to provide an overlay of information into the users line of sight without actually distracting them from the road. Mini have designed them to vastly improve the users driving experience. Just take our money already!

As we mentioned, the glasses will provide a huge amount of information to the user right in their line of sight. From seeing the level of fuel you have to the speed you are travelling, right down to the precise location with all be placed on a easy to use Head Up Display.

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It has many uses both in and out of the car.

Inside the vehicle the most notable use is the GPS and linking that to one’s HUD. It would allow the coloured lines and directions that are normally seen on a small GPS device screen, to appear in the users eyewear. The driver can see the direction lines appear in front of them! Effectively your own personal road signs will appear in your view.

Have you ever had to strain yourself or your neck to see behind you as you reverse? Well these new reality glasses have Augmented Parking which allows the user to see through the cars far-side mirror to avoid straining themselves when reversing. So handy! And really cool.

AccessoTech Augmented Reality Mini Glasses

Do you listen to music from your smartphone in your car and would like to read text messages if it weren’t for the road safety dangers? When Mini’s Augmented Reality Glasses solve those problems too. Text messages will appear in you view of the glasses except in a way that does no distract from the road like the traditional phone gazing would do. Also information on the music being played at the time can be chosen to appear and disappear in the glasses eye view.

They have many uses in the car but also outside of the car as well. Ever parked you’re car and gone off for the day but upon return you forget where exactly you left it. Well good news because the Mini Reality Glasses have a feature called First Mile/Last Mile. This will lead the user back to the exact point where the glasses left the car i.e. where the user parked. You’ll never lose your vehicle in the multi-storey car park again!

AccessoTech Augmented Reality Mini Glasses

Want to find you friends house? Or the location of a particular appointment you have. The glasses HUD will lead you to the doorstep! Just remember to take them off. Or else you might scare your friend or doctor and that would not end well.

Everyone is getting excited about this new development in eye wear technology. However they are just a concept right at this moment but they will be on display at the Shanghai Motor Show next week.

AccessoTech Augmented Reality Mini Glasses

Right now it is a really cool idea. But that’s it. If Mini ever expect to sell a pair of these glasses then they are going to have to vastly improve the look of them. The devices functionality is fantastic and can only lead to better things such as beaming a similar display to the windscreen. However to put it bluntly, they’re hideously stupid looking when worn by someone. And no customer wants to be laughed at even if the glasses do something really cool. Once a sleeker, more inviting look is created and mass produced it could spell a fortune for Mini and we would definitely buy them.

285 Hours Creating Just One Part of The iWatch?! Madness!

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We all know that Apple is a company that pays attention to the finer exquisite details of their products. It’s what sets them aside from their competition more often than not. But wow, they really took extreme measures when it comes to a very simple part of the new iWatch device being launch shortly.

Apple reportedly spent over 285 hours taking still images of a single flower while it was blooming in order to provide consumers with a different angle or stage of the flower every time they raise their wrists. Photographers working with the design team, astonishingly took over 24,000 shots of the flower!iWatch - AccessoTech

That is just the effort involved in creating the ‘Flower face‘ for the iWatch. There are examples of other faces for the Apple iWatch according to human interface chief Alan Dye. There is also the ‘Jellyfish face‘ which involved building a fish tank and shooting them at 300fps on super-expensive Phantom cameras, leading to 4096 x 2304 images! Then we have the iconic ‘Mickey Mouse face‘ which taps it’s toe once per second in perfect harmony with every other ‘Mickey Mouse face‘ iWatch around the globe.

iWatch - AccessoTech

That is an unbelievable level of detail considering these huge, high resolution images are going to be shrunk down to fit on the screen of the iWatch device! It would be fair to say it is a level of detail that will never be truly admired by consumers and users. The funny thing is Apple could have just used CGI (Computer Generated Images) with the exact same end result and in a small fraction of the time. But that is simply not what Apple do. They got where they are today because of the attention to every single last detailed pixel. Some brands and companies say that they pay attention to the little details and they may do, just not to the scale and level that Apple does.

AccessoTech would just like to point out that this is a fantastic marketing tool and unique selling point when it comes to promoting the product. Good effort Apple! However, it probably would have been better for Apple to use the quicker, CGI route and using their time more effectively on things that consumers and end users actually care about…..like battery power and making sure the iWatch actually lasts the entire day!

Wouldn’t that be better Apple?

iWatch - AccessoTech

Trouble Ahead For Google

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Careful Google, the European Commission are coming after you.

An investigation is being opened into Google’s practices, operations and conduct by the European Commission it has been confirmed. The Commission are of the belief that Google may have abused the dominance that they have over markets and not playing fairly when it comes to incentivising phone and tablet makers.

AccessoTech

The basis for opening the investigation is due to the belief that Google has been playing unfairly in the market, incentivising phone and tablet makers to “exclusively pre-install Google’s own applications and services” on all new devices. So when someone buys a new phone or tablet, Google apps and services are already on the device, placing the Search Engine behemoth ahead of competition immediately. The main concern is that they are using unfair incentives to do this along with their dominant market position.

The investigation will also try to figure out if Google’s pre-installed apps and services actually hinder rivals from downloading modified versions of Android on devices and directly affect their access. If proven true, this could spell huge trouble for Google!

AccessoTech

Google  believes that they are playing by the rules. Hiroshi Lockheime, Android Engineering VP announced via his own blog that “The European Commission has asked questions about our partner agreements. It’s important to remember that are voluntary – again, you can use Android without Google – but provide real benefits to Android users, developers and the broader ecosystem“.

A lot has to happen over the next while before any outcome is reached but we will keep our readers up to date. The Commission have given the tech giant 10 weeks to respond, but if found to be in the wrong, rest assured Google will have to pay out an astronomical sum of money. Let’s see how it goes.

AccessoTech

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Want An X-Ray Vision App? Don’t Lie, Of Course You Do

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Just your typical day. You get up, have your breakfast, get changed and head off to your local super car Ferrari showroom….

Then you encounter the awful problem that many of us face. Which colour super car will I buy today? I know, serious first world problems. Well if you are ever in this situation or like to dream about this situation, there is good news for you. There is now a new app that is here to help you with your dilemma.

App Technology

A fantastic company named Metaio, which specialise in augmented reality technologies, are the creators behind the technology on which the app is based. This new app, which sounds really awesome to us, uses a 3D tracking technology that has “7 Feature Spotlights” that customers can select. But get this… it has an X-Ray view!! That is just one view out of the seven spotlights it offers. Others include features that allow customers to get a visualization of the vehicle in a wind tunnel and a 3D breakdown of the brake assembly.

AccessoTech.com

Metaio’s technology tracks the edges of the car and detects it in the Apps API. When the device, whether it be a phone or tablet, is pointed at a Ferrari it picks up distance between body panels, the chassis, the wheel arches and other sections and then overlays the visualization graphics. Once held steady, the device and app can change numerous aspects of the cars look in seconds.

The New Ferrari App

Ferrari, app developer Z-Space and technology creator Metaio have teamed up to create a new app called Ferrari AR Showroom app. It allows customers in a Ferrari showroom to hold a tablet in front of the vehicle of their choice (or dreams) and then virtually change any piece of spec on the car. From the paint job to the rims to the custom specifications, a customer can change anything they wish with ease, providing a visualization of what their purchase would look like and making their purchase decisions much handier. It also helps the showroom dealership who doesn’t have to order in and hold each part that prospective customers may want. What you’d expect from a super car dealer; efficiency.

 AccessoTech.com

Past Use of The Technology

This apps use of Edge Tracking Technology has been used in the past. Back in 2013 Metaio worked with German car manufacturer Volkswagen to create the augmented reality software needed to provide them the technical information about their hybrid concept XL1 car in real-time. It could visualize real and virtual parts side-by-side!

Metaio - AccessoTech.com

The Future

The new app work with 5 Ferrari models right now but has the capacity to be used on the manufacturers full range of vehicles. Just in the off chance you want to know which models are compatible with the app right now, they are the 458 Speciale and Spider, the FF, the California, and the F12berlinetta. It will appear in Japanese and Australian showrooms first and will make its US customer debut in mid-May at the much anticipated InsideAR augmented reality show.

In the coming decade we expect augmented reality apps such as this one to be even more common place in society.

iPhone 7 Could Be the Best Camera Yet

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Apple is on their way to upping their game yet again. The iPhone manufacturer has acquired a new camera company based out of Israel that could bring DSLR-Level imaging to customers. It could result in sheer magnificence for the iPhone 7…when it reaches us.

The company that has been acquired by Apple is called LinX Computational Imaging. They create smartphone and tablet cameras that have the ability to use special sensors to create high resolution images. The algorithms used by LinX are able to match DSLR cameras in much smaller packages!

iPhone 6 Review

Apple has been investing quite heavily in Israel the past few years resulting in increased hiring campaigns and multiple company acquisitions, a list that now includes LinX. The Wall Street Journal and other others have reported Israel as Apple’s second biggest Research & Development hub with up to 750 employees based there.

No official figures have been released by either LinX or Apple but the WSJ are estimating the number to stand at around $20 million. Don’t take that as gospel though.

AccessoTech

With the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus only being released back in November 2014 and Apple focusing on sales of the new Apple Watch product, it may be a while before the iPhone 7 reaches the market. But when it does, there is quite a good chance we will see DSLR cameras and high res images listed on the list of upgraded specifications. If Apple keep to their usual annual update we will more than likely see an iPhone 6S or 7 released in November this year.

AccessoTech’s fingers are well and truly crossed! Let’s hope battery life is improved too…

Game of Thrones - AccessoTech

Google Want To Rid The World Of Spoilers! Finally!

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I don’t know about you but nothing ruins my day more than logging onto social media and seeing a spoiler of some kind! It happens to all of us, we pop on to Facebook or Twitter and there, right at the top of your news feed is a massive spoiler from your favourite TV show or a film you haven’t seen yet. If this hasn’t happened to you before, well then you must be the luckiest person alive and we mere mortals envy you.

Well Google have apparently devised a clever solution to this spoiler epidemic. The Search Engine Masterminds have created a patent on this new solution. They want to implement a plan to monitor all social networks or similar sites for any sign of spoilers. Then they will blur out those spoilers! Fantastic, right?

The Walking Dead - AccessoTech

This technology will allow Google to track what TV shows you talk about, track what you watch and what exact point you are up to in any particular series. It can then hide anything past that point from your view. Quartz have suggested something akin to Netflix or Spotify in the way that they track your exact progress on a series or song down to the minutes and seconds. Using this approach, Google would be able to understand your friend group and stop spoilers.

Yes, it would be easier for all if we could trust our friends and favourite sites not to ruin the season finale of Game of Thrones or a major character death in The Walking Dead. Unfortunately we can’t. So Google will now save us instead!

Game-of-Thrones - AccessoTech

All we can say is…Thank You Google! We will no longer have to avoid our social media news feeds like the plague for an entire day because of the fear of spoilers destroying our lives. Okay, yes that was a bit dramatic for some. But for those who have had their days, months or even years ruined by spoilers that was probably an accurate description of how you felt. The look on your face might have looked a little something like this…

Game of Thrones - AccessoTech

New Home Screen Channel for Xbox One Users

Microsoft has just launched it’s April Update for their Xbox One platform and is showing users exactly whats going on through a new home screen channel. The update adds a new way for Microsoft to tell it’s gaming fans exactly what there is available to play, buy or watch.

Xbox One April Update - AccessoTech

Effectively the update adds a new tab to your existing home screen. Through this tab it recommends games, game broadcasts, videos, movies, TV shows, game clips, and also trending TV shows.

This is a useful little tab and is worth updating now in order to get it. Also the most helpful addition this month relates to a users achievements – the notification that pops up will now tell you the achievement’s description in addition to its name, so you won’t have to open or snap a separate app to find out what you did right. It’s something many users have complained about in forums in the past. Our hats off to Microsoft, they are listening!

The new “Whats On” Channel is going to be positioned between your existing “Friends” tab and your “Store” tab. The April Update began rolling out across its platform on Monday 6th April and is available for users right now.

Xbox One April Update - AccessoTech

Apple vs Samsung - AccessoTech

The Gloves Are Off! Apple & Samsung Battling Again

In case you have been under a rock lately, you may have heard that Samsung are releasing their new Galaxy S6 range of smartphones today. Some experts are calling the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge the best phone in the world right now, stating that these new releases will set a new sales record.

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Be under no illusions here, demand is going to be astonishing especially when it comes to the S6 Edge model with features a screen that stretches down both sides of the device. Analysts are making early predictions based on pre-order numbers that shipments of Samsung’s newest devices could reach up to 57 million this year alone! Demand for the Edge is actually expected to exceed supply as the Korean tech-giant are struggling to manufacture enough flexible screens.

Although the S6 Edge has an extremely cool feature, the standard edition S6 with a traditional flat screen is expected to be just as popular with consumers due to its sharp sleek look and it’s lower price.

Samsung shares have rallied in the previous days as optimism continues to grow with investors. Consumer markets have reacted well to the new design of the S6 product range as well as the fact that Samsung are now using their own processor and chips. Manufacturing your own components increases profit margins and that can only delight investors.

All of this means Samsung are having a resurgence against Apple in the market.

Apple vs Samsung - AccessoTech

They have a created a metal bodied device with a 5.1 inch screen placing themselves right in between Apple’s iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. It’s a size that is deemed by consumers and focus groups and a comfortable size and natural fit to a persons hand. An analyst at BS Securities Co. in Seoul has said that “Samsung has stuffed in all the most advanced components, from processors to memory chips, made by itself in the S6, and that can bring a huge ripple effect across its businesses”.

Apple vs Samsung - AccessoTech

So far they have done a great job of recovering from the mis-launch of the S5 device in 2014 when they slipped to No.2 smartphone vendor in the world. With the S6 range, Samsung have come out swinging and are looking to regain their position as the world’s clear No.1 smartphone vendor by volume. The battle for supremacy is well and truly back!

Apple vs Samsung - AccessoTech

Slow-Mo Videos Coming To Twitter

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Prepare yourselves, you’re Twitter stream is about to be packed full of your friends posting videos of their dogs falling over, cats coughing up hairball and their mate running into a glass sun-room door. Except there’s one catch…they’ll be in slow motion.

Twitter - AccessoTech

Twitter will soon become the “go to” place for sharing slow motion video and media files and they now support the ability to embed directly from your iPhone into you feed. We know, it’s about time! This is something users of social media and websites everywhere have been requesting for quite some time.

low Motion Videos - AccessoTechlow Motion Videos - AccessoTech

Why so many social media platforms and website developing systems still do not support the slow motion feature is beyond us here at AccessoTech. But we must say “Good job Twitter!”. Now we can finally share the comedy gold stored on our phones. Of course the videos we are talking about are the ones scaring the living hell out your mother while shes vacuuming and in slow motion! Yesss! Sorry in advance Mam! It’ll be something like this.

Go on, click on your Twitter app via your iPhone and start sharing your slooooooow-mooooo video clips right now. You don’t even need an update to do it. You’ll need an iPhone to embed the vids on to Twitter but you’ll still be able to view the videos in your feed regardless of what device you have.

Just prepare yourselves now. These style of video will be everywhere pretty soon.

Android - AccessoTech

10 Android Apps You Need On Your Phone Right Now

AccessoTech brings you the top 10 apps you need to have on your Android devices right now! Lets go!

1. Fenix

Fenix App - AccessoTech

If you use Twitter, you are among 284 million people in the world. For some users it’s a great way to keep up to date on events and the minute to minute gossip of the day. Then there are those users who are literally hooked to the app with an unhealthy obsession. Either way, Fenix is for Twitter users who want to make things as quick, easy and efficient as possible.

This app has a slick, customisable interface that allows the user to streamline their Twitter experience. You can customise the order in which you swipe through streams. When you get used to this app, even if you weren’t a Twitter obsessed user, you may be after using this, so be careful. Hardcore users will get great value for money when it comes to Fenix because the price tag is being increased. It now stands at €4.91 on PlayStore.

2. Cyber Dust

Simply put, Cyber Dust is like the text and mail version of Snapchat and it’s fantastic! This app allows you to send fully encrypted messages, provides a time limit for reading and then self-destructs forever. Messages never hit a hard drive because it is only done online. Its free and available all over the world. A user can send disappearing stickers, blast locations to friends and can also pin sent messages for their eyes only. High quality media is fully supported and is lighting quick. And of course the user will be notified if a screenshot is taken. Plus, no proof of who sent or received a message.

Cyber Dust - AccessoTech

3. Google Authenticator

This one is dull but absolutely essential. And it’s free! It safeguards your online accounts against hacking using a 2 Step Authentication Process. Once the user is registered you can use a time sensitive code provided by the app to login. Google Authenticator - AccessoTech

4. Showbox

Do you want an amazing collection of Movies and TV-shows? Absolutely free? And you want to download them on your Android device or watch online? Then you need ShowBox! It is not available through PlayStore however.

Go to phone settings, allow unknown sources in your security settings. Then go to you browser and search for “ShowBox APK”. Download the app and it’s yours! This is the App icon just in case you were wondering why we have put a giant eye in the middle of your screen.

Show Box - AccessoTech

5. Pocket

The app that allows a user to save articles, images, videos or really anything else and view them later on when you are ready. And you don’t even need an internet connection as it caches everything instantly for you. Extremely handy! And yes, it’s free.Pocket App - AccessoTech

6. Pushbullet

Ever saved something to your phone but want to view it on you Tablet, Laptop or Desktop? Then you need PushBullett. This app allows you to push photos, screenshots, web links, and even notifications across to your computer via a browser plugin. You can also push content to other Pushbullet users you know, easily sharing video, images and documents for editing or collaborating on with others. Yep, it’s free!

PushBullet - AccessoTech

7. Skyscanner

SkyScanner - Accessotech

Planning a trip? Comparing prices? Choice of hundreds of airlines? Get Skyscanner for free and you’re sorted. You’ll have your destination, times and cheapest prices in no time at all. Track the live status of any flight, see how late it left its departure gate and how much time it’s made up in the air, or just watch the live departure boards on your phone so you can finish your pre-flight pint!

As useful for the loving mother standing waiting in arrivals as it is for the jet setting son or daughter.

8. Clean Master

Who wants a slow device after paying quite a lot of money? Nobody, that’s who. Clean Master will sort out the clutter that collects on your device after some use, cleaning it and making it as fast as it should be! Using a feature known as Junk File Cleaning, Clean Master scans your Android device and chucks out the unwanted cache and residual files.

CleanMaster - AccessoTech

It helps your device run at cooler temperatures, boots the most out of memory and RAM and gets all the power possible out of the devices CPU. It’s simple and free. Why not get it is our question.

9. Prey

Prey App - AccessoTech

Whether you’re worried about losing your phone or worried about your children’s safety or whereabouts, this app is useful for everyone. Open source app Prey promises to protect your phone or tablet (or laptop) in the event of theft, and it’s loaded with features: it can use a device’s GPS to provide a precise location, deactivate it via text message, and notify you if the SIM card’s replaced.

The app also has a camouflage mode which hides it from a thieves view, so they cannot spot the app and uninstall it. It is a free app, but has in-app purchases in case you wish to upgrade to some pro features.

10. Zedge

Zedge - AccessoTech

Ringtones, wallpapers, games and more at your finger tips. Its available for iOS and Android except it is so much easier to install and use on Android. It’s offers free wallpapers, ringtones and notification sounds to easily customize your device. In addition users are offered personalized game recommendations. Here at AccessoTech we love our House of Cards notification tone just like Frank Underwood and can never get sick of a little Uptown Funk.

Any apps you find handy? Let us know through our website or social media!

Replace Your iPhone 5 Battery Before January 2016

Apple has announced it is extending their battery replacement programme for its iPhone 5 devices. The original offer had been for up to two years but Apple has now said they are pushing that back until January 2016. Great news if your still holding on to your iPhone 5 and are getting decreasing battery power!

iPhone 5 Battery Replacement - AccessoTech

The reason behind the programme, which was launched last year, was to allow anyone who had purchased an iPhone 5 between September 2012 and January 2013 to bring back their device to the store and get a free battery replacement. iPhone 5 devices manufactured during that time frame have shown severe battery power issues. Apple believe these issues to be so bad that they not only created the replacement programme but are now extending it, something not expected form the tech giant.

iPhone 5 Battery Replacement - AccessoTech

Any iPhone 5 customer who feels they may fall into the category of being eligible for a new battery, you can check by going to the battery replacement Apple website found here: https://www.apple.com/support/iphone5-battery/

Once on the website just enter your iPhone devices serial number, found in your phone settings, and you’re good to go! If you’re definitely eligible, then you can take your device to an Apple Store for a free replacement. If you love your iPhone 5 then we recommend you get on top of this fairly fast! Who doesn’t want better battery power in their phone for free?

iWatch - AccessoTech

Do you really need an Apple Watch?

Apple considers it ‘’the most personal device they have ever designed.’’.

We feel it won’t offer anything more noteworthy than your iPhone already does but that said it’s still going to be a game-changing wearable device and we look forward to getting our hands on one!

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The Apple Watch is fundamentally an extension of your iPhone placed on your wrist… In the beginning an early prototype was an iPhone stuck to somebody’s wrist with a Velcro strap!

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The Basics

The Watch can make & receive phone calls, SMS and iMessage so long as it’s paired with your iPhone through Bluetooth or WiFi. As expected it can track your heart rate & running distance. Also it can control your Apple TV or even act as a GPS on your wrist to help you find your destination. Apple Pay technology is built in allowing you to use it as a payment method in appropriate stores. Don’t forget its only compatible with iPhone 5 or later..

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Features

The Apple Watch is powered by Apple’s S1 processor which is produced by Samsung. In terms of speed the chip is comparable with the A5 found in the iPod touch. It may seem strange that Samsung is producing a component for the Apple Watch but this isn’t the first time we have seen competitors in one market become allies in another.

Force Touch

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‘’Force touch’’ technology means that the device knows how hard you are pressing on it. One simple use for this is that a harder press of the screen can change the colour and expression of an emoji! It will also allow the device to distinguish a press from a tap, combine this with its ultra-sensitive capactive touchscreen and the device will be able to offer different user interfaces based on the force of the touch. We are excited to see the full magnitude of this feature!

Taptic Engine

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The device also uses a ‘’Taptic Engine’’ which is an advanced way of combining different vibrations and level of force to alert the user as to how important a notification is. An unimportant Snapchat notification would feel like a light tap compared to a phone call from a frequent contact, which would be a harsher more noticeable vibration. The ‘’digital crown’’ on the device acts as a home button and can be used to scroll or zoom too. The device also knows when it is being raised or lowered and can change its display accordingly.

This video by Apple demonstrates these features in action for messaging:

Models

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There will be 3 different watches available on the 28th of April.

The Apple Watch Sport, Apple Watch and the luxury Apple Watch Edition. The biggest difference in each watch is the strap and case, there is no difference in spec! (No difference in speed, battery life or even memory!)

The Stainless steel case is the Apple Watch, aluminium case is the Apple Watch Sport and 18-karat gold is the Apple Watch Edition.

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Watch Size & Straps

Each Watch comes in two different sizes 42MM or 38MM. Some say one is a women’s size and one is a men’s size, we say choose which ever you prefer and feels best!

Here is all 37 straps available from Apple in one place:

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Straps are interchangeable and we foresee a potential market for 3rd party companies to design and sell customised straps!

Battery Life

A full charge is expected to last a full day of use and the battery according to apple charges very fast:

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The MagSafe inductive charger is a cool magnet style charger pictured below:

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So, Do You Really Need One?

If you are somebody who always has your iPhone in your hand and likes to have the majority of your notifications turned on then the Apple Watch is for you! If you rather keep your phone as far away as possible and only receive important notifications then we think you’re better off keeping your money in your wallet and setting up your iPhone so that you’re only notified for what you deem most important!

For value for money we recommend the Apple Watch Sport. In Ireland we expect to see it priced by retailers in the 300-400 euro range and this will be the cheaper tier of the three models. On the Apple USA store this model is currently priced at 349$ which is approx 320 euro at today’s exchange rate. Considering it will have the exact same functionality as the other two models and the only difference is an interchangeable strap its a no brainier for us !!

House of Cards - AccessoTech

Guess Who’s Back….#Underwood2016

“I will leave a legacy #Underwood2016.”

So you spent February and March binge watching the much anticipated Season 3 of House of Cards. So now that you have come back to the world and emerged from your man cave filled with Doritos, Ice Cream and Netflix, its time to get on with your life. Or you could just move on to another series to binge on!

House of Cards - AccessoTech

Until 2016 of course, because earlier in the week news broke via Twitter that Mr F.U himself will be returning to our screens for Season 4 of H.O.C. Not only will the Netflix Exclusive return next year, 2016 is an election year in the United States, creating a very exciting parallel between drama and real life. I can assure you as soon as the new season becomes available my Vitamin D levels are going to go dangerously low because I won’t see the sun until every episode is watched. That is true addiction and Netflix binging people!

Wouldn’t it be great if the actual Presidential campaign were this exciting? I think we all want Frank Underwood in the White House for real. The no-B.S approach is what’s needed sometimes. Okay, maybe not the murder side of things but definitely the no-B.S.

Kevin Spacey and Robin Wright are expected to return for one of the most anticipated series of all time and we cannot wait!

If we get any news on possible cast additions or story-lines, you will find it right here with AccessoTech! Now here’s some of the best of HOC, just in case you’re experiencing some withdrawals! You’re welcome.

Live Streaming: Meerkat vs Periscope – Let The Battle Commence

How does broadcasting video content in real time to the rest of the world from a simple app of your phone sound? Pretty cool right? A new sensation is sweeping the world of social media; live streaming apps.

When it comes to live streams, a user has only two real choices. Meerkat or Periscope. So who wins? AccessoTech have played around with both apps and are here to tell you the pros and cons of both.

Meerkat vs Periscope

Meerkat vs Periscope

Ease of Use & Stream

First things first (I’m the realest), these apps are designed to make it easy for the user to stream video in real time. Just how easy is it though. It was actually harder than I thought it would be unfortunately. As usual, too good to be true. But in fairness to both apps they are both relatively new on the market so there is no doubt that based on customer and user reviews, the experience will eventually be refined and improved by the respective app developers. Meerkat was released at the start of March and Periscope launched officially last week. Periscope needs to tone down notifications and increase time that comments stay on the users screen but overall Periscopes interface was cleaner and easier to navigate and stream quality was marginally better than Meerkat. That combined the fact that it is only a week old brings me to my verdict.

Usability Verdict: Periscope

Periscope

Periscope

Quality & Connectivity

The quality of the video stream is contingent on one factor; how good is your WiFi connection? When in bad Wi-Fi zones “Low Connectivity” error messages can be extremely irritating. One important point to note is that users will most likely want to stream their day and experiences on the go meaning Mobile Data needs to be used. I don’t know about your Mobile Data service, but mine is not good at all. As you can imagine with so many others trying out these apps, and the level of service needed to stream adequately, I quickly gave up on streaming videos via Mobile Data. This goes for both apps. If I was to give an edge, it would just be slight. The winner by a hair is….

Quality Verdict: Periscope

Compatibility

Both apps have been released in iOS App Store. For that reason, to date we have only reviewed the iPhone versions. The app developers for Meerkat and Periscope have promised that “Android Support is coming soon”. How soon? Who knows. But being the owner of a HTC One M8, I’m not too happy about it.

However, Periscope having the financial backing of Twitter and Meerkat certainly has solid funding and resources too. So hopefully this will result in promises being fulfilled! Keyword there is ‘hopefully’. I held my breath for Temple Run on Android before and nearly died. Never again. As both apps are at the same level here it’s a tie.

Compatibility Verdict: Tie

Meerkat

Meerkat Login

Extra Features

Meerkat does have a very useful function, being that users are able to schedule broadcasts in advance. This makes things much easier for Broadcasters to rweach new fans and also for basic users levels to find high profile Broadcasters. Audience building is the key feature I was impressed with on Meerkat.

Periscope’s advantage is that it allows the streaming user to archive any clips filmed for sharing to the web. A point of notice though! Save it yourself, this archive process is not automatic as many users have complained about since the app was released. Meerkat does not have the same functionality, leaving it a bit like Snapchat to be quite honest. Its possible for others to come across your video but it’s less likely than when on Periscope.

Features Verdict: Periscope

Conclusion

Both apps were released back to back, offering short term video capturing abilities. It’s safe to say that both apps are in their infancy and experimentation is sure to be carried out on them, when all user feedback is collated and analysed by developers. You can only use one at a time so right now I would recommend a user to get the Periscope app. Although comments need to stay on screen longer, it has a cleaner user interface, has marginally better stream quality and is backed by Twitter.

Final AccessoTech Verdict: Periscope!

But you never know. The first developer to release their app on Android and implement changes based on feedback could firmly take the lead in this Live Stream App Battle! Let’s wait and see.

Meerkat vs Periscope

AccessoTech Chooses Periscope

iPhone 6 Review

iPhone 6 Review – “Looks really good but you’ll need a case to keep it that way”

The iPhone 6; it’s an iPod, a Phone, an internet communications device. It’s phenomenal and it’s really no wonder Apple sold over 10 million iPhone 6 devices within its first three days on the market (an Apple record).

AccessoTech - iPhone 6 Review

Power

It’s super-fast powered by a 1.4 GHz, 64-bit dual core Apple A8 SoC and AMD dual core CPU. In other words it’s quick! Three different internal memory sizes are available: 16GB, 64GB or 128GB. In our opinion here at AccessoTech, the 64GB is the best option as 16GB will easily become full with pics, vids and apps!

Aesthetics

Granted its a pretty good looking phone, we wouldn’t go as far as to agree with others that it’s the most beautiful phone on the market right now. The iPhone 6 boasts HD Retina display on a 4.7 inch screen & the iPhone 6 Plus a 5.5 inch screen. The larger screen sizes make the iPhone even more enjoyable to use. The screen size has really increased from the iPhone 4 which had a 3.5 inch display. Its light weighing just 129g and the Plus 172g. The iPhone 4 weighed 137g and the iPhone 5 was surprisingly lighter at 112g.

AccessoTech - iPhone 6 Review

Available with a white face and either a Gold or Silver back or a black face and a Space Grey back In true Apple style, the phone has a premium look and feel. As beautiful as the iPhone 6 is we certainly recommend owners protect their iPhones with a strong case! Although it appears it doesn’t crack too easily, at least in this once instance:

Features

Some of our favourite features on the iPhone 6:

  • Finger print tech which allows you to unlock the phone using your finger print which works perfectly. Also can be used instead of entering apple ID password for purchases.
  • If you already have an iPhone you can migrate your contacts, apps and pictures etc using iCloud and is very easy to do!
  • The back camera is a Sony 8Megapixel camera which allows HD video recording and slow motion features. It produces beautiful pictures! The front camera is 1.2MP and has 720p video recording capability.
  • The stereo speakers are high quality and loud!
  • The Apple earphones which come with the Phone are beautiful, we wouldn’t expect anything less considering Apple bought Beats for 3 billion dollars.
  • The passbook app allows you to use the iPhone as your boarding card by scanning it and saving it for you. A cool little feature! We wonder how often it is used though.
  • It will be compatible with the Apple Watch – which are very excited about!!
  • Many Fantastic Apps available only on Apple app store.

Negatives:

  • It doesn’t have 2 rear cameras which would allow for 360 degree 3D photos. This is a feature of the HTC One M8, the iPhone’s main competitor in the market right now. Although there are 360 degree apps which are available on the app store, its simply not up to scratch when compared to the HTC One M8.
  • See also HTC One M9 Review found here.

HTC One M8

  • The lighting port for charging means any in car devices or speakers designed for iPhone 4 OR 4S are rendered obsolete.
  • Siri voice recognition is built in although it can be very useful it’s still not advanced enough to carry out complex tasks.
  • Less free Apps on the Apple app store compared to Android store.

AccessoTech’s Verdict

Having recently upgraded from an iPhone 4 to an iPhone 6 the two phones are incomparable and picking up my old iPhone 4 now feels like a blast from the past. The screen almost looks blurry in comparison. It’s hard to find many faults in the iPhone 6 and if you like the Apple operating system then you will love the iPhone 6. Its priced at the higher end of the market but you certainly get a lot of bang for your buck! If you’re an Apple fan through and through, you will be getting this phone. If you’re an Android user, we would recommend you at least check this phone out.

One question still remains though…. DOES IT BLEND? Lets see!   

Bye Bye to Netflix Regional Restrictions!

Get ready. Netflix is about to take over even more of your life. If that’s even possible.

It has given us the amazing Breaking Bad, the tantalizing House Of Cards and the hilarious Better Call Saul. Netflix is a fan favorite across the globe but one issue has always been present. Why don’t all regions have the same media libraries accessible to them? Why does USA get Wolf of Wall Street on their library and Europe have to wait months on end? I want to see Matthew McConnaughey’s chest thumping song now dammit! It’s just not fair. Check that out below, you know you want to!

Fear not Netflix lovers because geographic boundaries are about to become a thing of the past. Well at least according to CEO Reed Hastings, who has stated that everything should be released globally. Hastings has made the argument that people paying for the media service shouldn’t have to wait for new and highly anticipated programming to be made available in their regions.

This is 2015 after all. The old days where movies were released in the US first, allowing popularity to mount to a point where studios would finally release them in drips and drabs to viewers around the world. Today, digital has changed the way in which we live and the way in which we receive our products and services. Film reels do not need to be shipped to the other side of the world anymore. We want our favourite TV shows and movies and we want them now…..please.

Netflix

A lot of people use VPN’s to get around the regional restriction problem. That’s all well and good, but we just don’t want the hassle. Then there’s the legal issues around VPN’s. Yet again, more hassle. It should be at there at the press of a button if we pay our subscription every month. Thankfully Hastings agrees. He wants to stop people, who pay their subscriptions, from breaking the law in order to get things they should already have. He’s a great guy that Hastings!

We now face a future wherein all movies and addictive TV shows are accessible at all times. We love it!

Long live Netflix! And may our social lives rest in peace.

Oh and while you’re watching Netflix, how about liking and sharing AccessoTech on WordPress and social media? Alright, alright, alright!

Netflix

Chromebit

Thought Chrome-cast was cool? Way more where that came from!

Everyone I talk to loves the Chromecast. All I hear is “it’s so handy“, “I have waited for a casting device like this for so long!” and the most common of all “Only €40? Sure I’ll buy two!“.

Well if you’re tech mad and anything like me and everyone I know, then you’ll be really excited to hear what Google have just announced. The latest afforable HDMI gadget has just been released by Google and it is called Google Chromebit. So what does it do?

Chromebit

The Chromebit, made by ASUS turns any TV with a HDMI slot into a Chrome OS PC! A fully fleshed PC on the big screen.

I know what you’re thinking already. Take my money! I know I am getting one and I’d recommend you to follow suit. However you have a very difficult decision to make….What  colour do you want you Chromebit to be? The new dongle come in blue, silver and orange. You certainly cannot go wrong with AccessoTech Orange or Silver. The chip also has the capability to swivel around so as to be able to reach those tricky HDMI Ports on the back or side of some TV’s.

Chromebit

Cost

The Chromebit will launch at just £70 in the UK, the equivalent of €96 when it launches in Ireland. For our American readers it will set you back just $100. Australians will be charged AU$120 for this new piece of kit. For turning for 50″ into a fully usable Chromebook PC, AccessoTech are definitely not complaining about the price-tag.

Chromebit

Technical Side

The device sports a Rockchip RK 3288 chip and quad-core processor Mail 760 graphics. Sound good so far? I’ll keep going! It will give the user 2GB of memory, 16GB of storage (solid state), full Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0 capabilities and an added USB 2.0 port on the end.

It is noteworthy however that the Chromebit will not be the only device of it’s kind on the market. In January, Intel announced a similar concept for a product that would turn a TV into a Windows 8.1 platform. We will bring you more info on the Intel prdoduct as soon as we hear it! (Watch this space!) Some Chinese manufacturers will have Android based devices too.

We will bring you reviews of the new Chromebit device when it launches officially in the summer.

HTC One M9 - AccessoTech

HTC One M9 Review – “Spec Sheet Warriors will be happy, Innovative Tech fans will not”

HTC One M9 – AccessoTech’s Verdict

The M9 is an outstanding phone. That is only if you are upgrading from an iPhone 4, 4s, 5, Samsung S3 or S4. However if you are up to date with the latest phones like an M8, iPhone 6 or Samsung S6, the M9 just does not carry enough changes from the successful M8 to get us overly excited. Our suggestion would be to hold off for the next “One”. We have a great phone now in the M9 but we desire brilliance.”

 

HTC

Those three letters above symbolise a company that has gone through a renaissance in terms of their product quality. For years the Taiwanese phone manufacturer just kind of existed in the technology space, there was no spark or dazzle about them. The HTC Desire had something about it but follow up products sent sales into a nosedive. Then 2014 happened….the release of the HTC One M8 device.

 

The HTC One M8

The M8 was without question the best looking phone on the market. They had moved away from the industry standard of plastic device bodies and went with the beautiful aluminium options of Gunmetal Grey, Glacial Silver and Amber Gold. The M8 had the strong technological functions of a Samsung Galaxy with the beauty and shimmer that could rival and even out-do the iPhone. It was glorious to say the least. I knew I had to have it when I saw it and the world agreed when it became the overall number 1 ranked smartphone ahead of the newly released (and bendable) iPhone 6 and the (plastic and standard) Samsung S5.

HTC One M8

Following the success of the M8, HTC had a difficult decision to make. Do they try to capitalise on the success of the M8 with an evolved model? Or do they create something new and reinvent the wheel, yet again, risking extreme failure?

 

The HTC One M9

What we received was new of the HTC One M9, branded as “The One You Have All Been Waiting For”, very clever if you ask me. Except I am sad to say the device itself has not delivered upon the hype or excitement it had initially promised. I cannot tell you the M9 is a complete flop because it isn’t. It is still an aesthetically beautiful device, with an amazing camera, awesome sound features and a screen that pops with colour and definition. But therein lies the problem! To put it as simply as I can, it is too similar to the M8 model! There is no real Unique Selling Point that really captivates me into parting with my hard earned money or my current mobile phone. Sure it has a premium design and very strong camera but it could be considered too pricey by some and lacks significant battery improvements which were expected. That being said although the battery is not vastly improved compared to the M8, it still trumps the Samsung Galaxy S6 for battery performance.

AccessoTech - HTC One M9 Review

Cost

HTC believe they have outdone themselves and created the perfect device, how else could they explain the price tag? The One M9 is not cheap by any means. In Ireland you will be paying €640 for a pre-pay device and €130 for the device and €50 a month on bill pay. It is madness! If you are in the UK, the damage is £580 for a SIM free for the handset with an additional £10 on your monthly bill. Early indications in the US are showing the price without a subsidy to stand at approximately $655.

When you can get the One M8 for between half and two-thirds cheaper than the M9, I wouldn’t advise on spending the extra cash.

Design

It’s sleek, it’s beautiful and it makes you smile every time you look at it. The M9 is aesthetic brilliance. It comes in three very nice colours (the Amber Gold would be my choice).

HTC One M9 Review AccessoTech

The build quality is perfect too. However, it is again too similar to the M8. It is the same size screen with the same layout. The lock button has now switched from being on the top to now being on the side, which to be honest has confused things as the user can get mixed between the volume controls and locking the device. They have removed the beautiful Duo Camera sensor on the back of the phone and changed the camera to a bigger, 20.7MP, more squared version. I definitely preferred the way the camera was placed on the previous M8. It’s the little things guys.

Screen

It is the same size screen people. It is still 5 inches compared to the 5.1 size that a lot of other smart phones provide with their latest offerings. To be honest I love the screen size on the M8 and M9 so it’s not something I will ever complain about. But there are always those people who care about arguing about the numbers on spec sheet of a phone. There are even more who argue over the topic of inches and “does size matter”. The answer is always it’s what you do with it that counts and simply put HTC always delivers on definition, resolution, colour tones and beauty no matter what size the screen is. I’ll leave the insecure spec sheet warriors to compare inches thank you very much.

Sound

Sorry what did you say? Oh right, I couldn’t hear you over the awesome sound quality of my HTC One M9! To sum up the sound quality of the One M9, the BoomSound Integration with Dolby technology is outrageous. With or without the headphones the phones technology really does improve the quality of sound. It is pure, crisp and makes you feel every beat or gunshot, whether you’re listening to music or watching a movie. The sound is a major plus for the HTC One M9.

HTC One M9 BoomSound

Camera

Ah the Camera. It is the talking point of any phone. What can I tell you here other than the fact that I am utterly disappointed. The spec sheet warriors I mentioned earlier will be screaming at me things like “How can you be disappointed?! It has a 20.7MP camera! What about the megapixels man?!”. Save your megapixels little warriors. My disappointment lies in the fact that HTC have moved away from their ideology on UltraPixel’s and have ditched the Duo Camera Sensor idea that was present on the One M8. A defining difference that HTC had in the One M8 was that they stood fast against the idea that a person needed loads of MegaPixels to take a quality photo. Instead they used an innovative concept using a good quality camera with a 4MP sensor that could take in as much extra light as possible combined with a secondary sensor. Together these were able to create breath-taking photos which I still have not found on any other phone. HTC have used a 20.7MP camera on the One M9, a replica of the camera in the Sony Xperia Z3.

The colour tones are good, the changeable conditions are solid and the sharpness of the pictures is clear. However the HDR settings, the shutter speed, the lack of autofocus, the slow start processing,  and the Zoe effect camera has been moved to a separate app. There has been a big deal made about the over-exposure capabilities of photos. To be honest, using that effect always just looks like you’ve made a mess of editing a photo so I don’t see the point.

HTC took a big step back here in overall camera quality order to pack in more MegaPixels, which in my view is a big mistake.

HTC One M9 review AccessoTech

Battery

What’s that? You think now with the One M9 using Qualcomm improvements in processing, bigger power packs and Snapdragon 801 chips that the battery will be out of this world? Well sorry, you’re dead wrong! It breaks my heart to tell you that the battery in the One M9 is actually slightly worse than the M8 Model. I don’t know how that is possible but HTC managed to do it.

Last year with the M8 model we saw a phone that could longer than a day and have power saver and extreme power saver options to last even longer thanks to the Snapdragon 801 Chipsets! HTC are now using Qualcomm improvements in processing power which should make things more efficient. There are also larger power packs in the M9 which normally means better power. Quite honestly I can’t explain how they could go so backwards in battery power performance. I would recommend you to get the older HTC One M8 model if it were based on battery performance alone.

Memory

The memory however is a nice improvement! There is now 32GB of memory in the M9 which should eliminate any memory capacity issues that the One M8 model faced.

There is a micro SD slot built in also, offering the upper limit of 128GB space bringing the total available to 160GB for your One M9. Not too bad right? At least now you won’t get those annoying notifications to “delete apps to free up space”. I like my current apps too much to delete them! Problem solved in the new One M9.

Our Verdict

We liked the emotional attachment we developed with the phone, the build quality and the beauty of it. We loved the feel of the phone in your hand; it feels like it was made for you. The sound is amazing and the hand crafted, great aesthetic of the phones body is still top of the market.

We did not like the megapixel boost in the camera, leaving the Duo Sense ideology behind. The battery actually dipped which is not good at all. The price is way too high considering there are not enough improvements to justify it. Taking the genetics of the One M7 and One M8 and not adding much else does not make a must-buy handset in 2015.

The phone is outstanding if you are upgrading from 2 or more years ago. Otherwise AccessoTech advise you to go for the HTC One M8 model, as its basically the same phone except cheaper and better battery life.

Let’s see what HTC have for in store for us in 2016. We have a great phone now but we want brilliance.

For anyone looking for a Spec Sheet Breakdown of the One M9, here it is below:

AccessoTech HTC One M9 Spec Sheet

NASA: nobody’s going to Mars without our help

Let’s be honest, NASA is vital

AIVAnet

NASA’s top priority is still bringing humans to Mars and says private companies don’t stand a chance of getting there without its support. Administrator Charles Bolden told a US House budget committee, “our ultimate focus is the journey to Mars and everything comes back to that,” adding that the agency still plans to land there by the 2030s. A manned mission to Mars is crucial because the red planet was likely habitable in the past, and scientists must find out what went wrong to prevent a similar disaster on Earth. Bolden went so far as to say that humans need to “get away from being Earth-reliant… (and) Mars is the planet that is the most like Earth.”

He reiterated that step one of the journey is still the Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM) — with the crazy goal to put a chunk of asteroid into orbit around the moon — which…

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AccessoTech Augmented Reality Mini Glasses

Mini Produce New Augmented Reality Glasses

Car manufacturer Mini has produced a set of augmented reality glasses which will give the user a HUD (Head Up Display)! They will be able to provide an overlay of information into the users line of sight without actually distracting them from the road. Mini have designed them to vastly improve the users driving experience. Just take our money already!

As we mentioned, the glasses will provide a huge amount of information to the user right in their line of sight. From seeing the level of fuel you have to the speed you are travelling, right down to the precise location with all be placed on a easy to use Head Up Display.

AccessoTech Augmented Reality Mini Glasses

It has many uses both in and out of the car.

Inside the vehicle the most notable use is the GPS and linking that to one’s HUD. It would allow the coloured lines and directions that are normally seen on a small GPS device screen, to appear in the users eyewear. The driver can see the direction lines appear in front of them! Effectively your own personal road signs will appear in your view.

Have you ever had to strain yourself or your neck to see behind you as you reverse? Well these new reality glasses have Augmented Parking which allows the user to see through the cars far-side mirror to avoid straining themselves when reversing. So handy! And really cool.

AccessoTech Augmented Reality Mini Glasses

Do you listen to music from your smartphone in your car and would like to read text messages if it weren’t for the road safety dangers? When Mini’s Augmented Reality Glasses solve those problems too. Text messages will appear in you view of the glasses except in a way that does no distract from the road like the traditional phone gazing would do. Also information on the music being played at the time can be chosen to appear and disappear in the glasses eye view.

They have many uses in the car but also outside of the car as well. Ever parked you’re car and gone off for the day but upon return you forget where exactly you left it. Well good news because the Mini Reality Glasses have a feature called First Mile/Last Mile. This will lead the user back to the exact point where the glasses left the car i.e. where the user parked. You’ll never lose your vehicle in the multi-storey car park again!

AccessoTech Augmented Reality Mini Glasses

Want to find you friends house? Or the location of a particular appointment you have. The glasses HUD will lead you to the doorstep! Just remember to take them off. Or else you might scare your friend or doctor and that would not end well.

Everyone is getting excited about this new development in eye wear technology. However they are just a concept right at this moment but they will be on display at the Shanghai Motor Show next week.

AccessoTech Augmented Reality Mini Glasses

Right now it is a really cool idea. But that’s it. If Mini ever expect to sell a pair of these glasses then they are going to have to vastly improve the look of them. The devices functionality is fantastic and can only lead to better things such as beaming a similar display to the windscreen. However to put it bluntly, they’re hideously stupid looking when worn by someone. And no customer wants to be laughed at even if the glasses do something really cool. Once a sleeker, more inviting look is created and mass produced it could spell a fortune for Mini and we would definitely buy them.