The UpStream

Mercedes Benz Helping You Connect to Your World

posted Sunday Jan 29, 2012 by Guest Blogger

Mercedes Benz Helping You Connect to Your World

Right now if you own a SL class from Mercedes-Benz you can access data, make calls and play music on your phone directly through the mbrace system. However if you have a C class or a GLK series car that option is not available to you.

Mercedes-Benz is currently developing a concept that will allow customers with C class or GLK series owners to be able to integrate their smart phones or iPod Touches directly into their car. Once the device is plugged in the car will take over the info and become the infotainment system. You can then control the smart phone directly from the car, allowing for hands free-calling and access of supported applications on the smart phone through the car interface. All updates will be done through the smart phone so you will always be up to date.

The system they are now developing for the C class and GLK series will allow those customers to get connected at a more reasonable price. They hope to have the system available for C class and GLK series cars by the 3rd quarter of 2013.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central for the TechPodcast Network.

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Recon Instruments Head Up display for Skiers

posted Sunday Jan 29, 2012 by Guest Blogger

Recon Instruments Head Up display for Skiers

Recon Instruments shows Todd their heads up display for skiers, snowboarders and alpine sport enthusiasts. The display will give you a "dashboard" type display inside of your goggles that tells you speed, altitude, distance traveled, height of your jump and a whole lot more. It even gives you GPS data and with the Android powered version will allow other apps. It will even give you caller ID for an incoming call so you can decide if it's worth stopping and answering the phone. It will, however, not let you text, make calls or answer calls while skiing. (And you thought driving while texting was a problem). The unit is installed in the goggles and is controlled by a bluetooth remote that can be worn just about anywhere on your body and is very tough.

The android version is $399 and the Non-Android version is $299.

For more information go to reconinstruments.com.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central for the TechPodcast Network.

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The Kit by Livio Radio

posted Sunday Jan 29, 2012 by Guest Blogger

The Kit by Livio Radio

I have a 1998 Nissan Sentra it has an Am-FM radio and a cassette deck, which is how I connect my iPhone to listen to music. It works for that purpose, however I can't legally make or take calls while I am driving. The car runs great so I am not in the market for a new car, however I would love to be able to make hands free calls in my car. The Kit by Livio Radio was made for someone like me. It was shown at CES 2012. The Kit will work with any car that has an FM radio and a 12 volt adapter. The device plugs into the 12 volt adapter and then works with your iPhone or iPod Touch through Bluetooth. With the Kit by Livio Radio you to make hands free calls with the integrated microphone. You can voice dial anyone in your iPhone address book. It also allows you to stream music from your favorite music application including iTunes through the award-winning car Internet application. The Kit is around $119.99 and is available through the Livio website.

If you have an older model car and are looking to get connected, the Kit by Livio Radio maybe your answer if you have an iPhone or iPod Touch. It runs around $119.99 and is available through the Livio Raido website.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central for the TechPodcast Network.

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Biscotti TV Phone with Google Video Chat

posted Sunday Jan 29, 2012 by Guest Blogger

Biscotti TV Phone with Google Video Chat

Biscotti's TV phone is a small camera unit that sits on top of your big screen TV, connecting to the TV via HDMI and to the network via WiFi. Once connected up, owners can make high-definition video calls to other Biscotti owners and Google Video Chat users. And you will not believe how small the camera unit is. Todd chats to Matthew Shoemake to learn more.

The TV Phone uses an HDMI pass-through technology, meaning that there's no need to change channels when receiving a call as the Biscotti notifies users via a pop-up message on screen. By using Google Video Chat, the Biscotti TV Phone can connect to any device that has a Chat client, whether it's Android, iPhone or a PC. Connectivity with other video clients will be forthcoming, but no details just yet.

The Biscotti TV Phone is available for $199 and no monthly fees. Watch the video to get free shipping. (disclaimer - not sure how long this promotion will run after CES finishes)

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central for the TechPodcast Network.

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Speakers in Your Clothes by VeriSonix

posted Sunday Jan 29, 2012 by Guest Blogger

Speakers in Your Clothes by VeriSonix

Speakers in your clothes, at first I thought why would anybody want to have speakers in their clothes, but the more I thought about the more I liked the idea. Okay, maybe we should step back for a minute, what are we talking about. We are talking about Electret-electrostatic Flexible Loudspeakers (EFL) from VeriSonix. These are super thin speakers, about the same thinnest as a very thin piece of cardboard only flexible. Unlike regular speaker that have large cones, these speakers create sound by the use of positively charged membranes. They use only 10 percent of the power of normal speakers. The sound isn't great, it is like the sound you get from a pair of modestly priced headphones, but it's okay.

VeriSonix sells the speakers to end customers. The end customer comes to VeriSonix and tells them how they want to use the speakers. VeraSonik then integrates the Electret speakers into the end customer's design. I could see these speakers being placed in many things, including pillows, backpacks, stuffed animals, backs of chairs just to name a few. VeriSonix is based in Taipei, Taiwan and has been around since 2010. Electret-electrostatic Flexible Speakers were developed by Taiwan electrets electronics corporation (TEEC). Have you ever heard these speakers, what did you think of the sound.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central for the TechPodcast Network.

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Allure Energy: Proximity Energy Management

posted Sunday Jan 29, 2012 by Guest Blogger

Allure Energy: Proximity Energy Management

Allure Energy's patented Proximity Energy Management system is the advanced solution to energy management with today's active and somewhat unpredictable lifestyle. Older internet enabled thermostat systems allowed changing settings from smartphone apps - but the user still had to remember to manually intervene.

Allure Energy's system does the resets automatically, based on the reported position of the smartphone from GPS information to the system. Thus, the home is always at the proper temperature when occupants are away,but when they leave or return throughout the day, the energy is automatically adjusted for maximum energy efficiency.

Interview by Andy McCaskey of SDRNews for the TechPodcast Network.

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