News Column

Smartshoes will point you in the right direction: New in tech this week

July 28, 2014

Samuel Gibbs



Forget smartglasses. Smartshoes are the future: These intelligent shoes can measure your activity, your distance travelled, but much more than that, they can give directions to the nearest pub, library or post office. The Lechal smartshoes connect to a smartphone via Bluetooth pulling directions from Google maps. One or other of the shoes guides you to your destination with gentle vibrations at each turn. A smart insole is also available that will turn any old pair of shoes into smart apparel, just in case Day-Glo red trainers aren't your style.

London's tube goes fully contactless: From September passengers will be able to pay for their journeys using a contactless credit card, no Oyster required. Smartphone users on EE's mobile phone network will also be able to use their phones to pay, using EE's Cash on Tap app and certain smartphones.

Amazon's Fire Phone fails to ignite: Retail juggernaut Amazon's new smartphone has just been released in the US. There's no sign of it for the UK, but first impressions are lacklustre at best, meaning we're not missing much, despite its ability to track faces and purchase goods with a single tap.

Is it a phone? Is it a drone? No, it's both: The Flone is a cheap wooden H-frame that turns a smartphone into a DIY flying drone. Up in the air it's controlled by another smartphone on the ground using Bluetooth, keeping the cost of droning low. Now anyone can spy on their neighbours from above.

3D print your own satellite: Nasa has made 3D printing files for 21 of its satellites, space probes and asteroids available for free download. Anyone with a 3D printer can now create their own space-faring collection, complete with Voyager, Cassini and the Gale Crater on Mars. Perfect for the bedroom walls of kids and big kids. Samuel Gibbs



For more stories covering the world of technology, please see HispanicBusiness' Tech Channel



Source: Guardian (UK)


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