Category Archives: Tech & Savings Gate

Blueye’s underwater drone is good to go deep

The Blueye Pioneer can descend to a depth of 150 m (492 ft)

While still not as plentiful as their aerial cousins, there are now several underwater drones that are either in development or production. Essentially consumer versions of the Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs) used by scientists and other professionals, they’re camera-equipped unmanned mini-subs that let users see what’s lurking beneath the surface of their local waterways. And while almost all of the ones that we’ve seen so far can’t go deeper than 100 m (328 ft), the new Blueye Pioneer can go down to 150 m (492 ft). Who knows what you might find down there?

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Category: Marine

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iPhone 8 Expected to Include Faster 10W USB-C Wall Charger

Earlier this year, Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI Securities said the widely rumored 5.8-inch iPhone with an OLED display will feature a Lightning connector with USB-C Power Delivery that enables fast charging capabilities.



“iPhone 8″ mockup by Benjamin Geskin for iDrop News



Lending credence to that rumor, Barclays analyst Blayne Curtis today in a research note said the so-called “iPhone 8″ will come bundled with a 10W power adapter with a USB-C connector and an integrated USB-C Power Delivery chip.



Curtis said the USB-C Power Delivery chips built into both the iPhone and 10W power adapter will be supplied by Cypress Semiconductor. The research note suggests it’ll be the same CYPD2104 chip used in the new 10.5-inch iPad Pro.



An excerpt from the Barclays research note distributed to clients, obtained by MacRumors and edited slightly for clarity:
We believe that in the iPhone 8, Apple likely includes Cypress Semiconductor’s USB-C Power Delivery chip in the phone and an additional chip within the power brick in box (likely a new 10W, which would use a more integrated solution with Cypress Power Delivery).

Like the new 10.5-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro, the so-called “iPhone 8″ would be capable of fast charging with a Lightning to USB-C cable connected to the new 10W power adapter or Apple’s 29W USB-C power adapter for MacBook.



Apple will presumably include a Lightning to USB-C cable in the box if it’s going in this direction, possibly instead of the traditional Lightning to USB cable. Apple could also opt to include a female USB-C to male USB-A adapter in the box.



Apple’s current 5W Power Adapter for iPhone and 12W Power Adapter for iPad both have slower USB-A ports.



Given the “iPhone 8″ is expected to have around a 2,700 mAh L-shaped two-cell battery pack, faster charging would be a welcomed addition. The device is also widely rumored to feature wireless charging.

Related Roundup: iPhone 8
Tags: Barclays, USB-C, Lightning


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Self-driving pod delivers groceries to online supermarket customers

The electric CargoPod was developed for the Ocado trial by Oxbotica

Online supermarket Ocado in the closing stages of a two week grocery delivery trial, where customers in residential areas of Greenwich, London, get their shopping delivered by a self-driving electric van called the CargoPod. Developed by Oxbotica for the experiment, the vehicle uses sensors and software to make its way to more than a hundred customers taking part in the trial without the need for GPS.

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Category: Automotive

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Complete list of Xbox Game Pass games for Xbox One

Check out a complete list of all the Xbox One and Xbox 360 games currently offered by Xbox Game Pass.

Xbox Game Pass is a Netflix-style subscription service for games, offering access to more than 100 Xbox One and backward compatible Xbox 360 games at $9.99 per month. However, unlike traditional streaming services, you’ll be downloading games to your hard drive without the risk of losing visual fidelity.

Everything you need to know about Xbox Game Pass

We’ve brought together a full A-to-Z list of all the games available with an Xbox Game Pass subscription for the month of July, 2017. We’ll be updating this article as games are added and removed from the program going forward, so make sure to check back regularly for your favorite titles.

Qualcomm enables under display fingerprint scanning for smartphones

Qualcomm's new range of sensors means fingerprint scanning can now be embedded in phone displays.

Chip giant Qualcomm has announced new fingerprint scanning and authentication technology at Mobile World Congress in Shanghai, technology that should make it easier for manufacturers to embed fingerprint scanners under the display of any smartphone.

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Category: Mobile Technology

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Vivo Unveils Screen-Embedded Fingerprint Sensor Technology at MWC2017 Shanghai

As predicted, Vivo showcased fingerprint sensor technology embedded in a smartphone screen on Wednesday at the Mobile World Congress 2017 in Shanghai. The ‘Under Display Fingerprint Scanning Solution’ is based on Qualcomm technology and was demonstrated running on prototype devices based on the existing Vivo Xplay 6 phone.


Vivo claimed the under-display fingerprint solution, which doesn’t require a physical button for the sensor, is “the first to be demonstrated by a smartphone manufacturer”. The technology enables the use of a “true full-screen display and an integrated unibody and mechanical waterproofing design”, said the company.




“In Vivo’s R&D plan, fingerprint scanning will not be carried out by an independent button or region. It will be realised more subtly under the screen, behind the metal shell, or even in the frame.


“Based on ultrasonic technology, the fingerprint recognition technology can be further expanded to realize user interaction, such as gesture recognition, security verification and other fields, which will greatly enhance user experience.”

Vivo told Engadget that while the fingerprint scanning function was limited to a small region on the prototype devices, in theory the same sensing technology could be applied across the entire screen, but that it would significantly increase production cost.



Following the unveiling, Qualcomm issued a press release announcing the development of new fingerprint scanners that work through displays, thick glass, and metal, with underwater operation, heartbeat and blood flow detection.

“We are excited to announce Qualcomm Fingerprint Sensors because they can be designed to support sleeker, cutting-edge form factors, unique mobile authentication experiences, and enhanced security authentication,” said Seshu Madhavapeddy, vice president, product management, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. “This provides OEMs and operators with the ability to offer truly distinct, differentiated devices with added value on truly groundbreaking new devices.”

Qualcomm claimed the technology was capable of scanning through OLED display stacks “of up to 1200um”, and was the first commercially announced to scan through up to 800 µm of cover glass and up to 650 µm of aluminum, an improvement over the previous generation’s 400 µm capability for glass or metal. The company said it had designed the technology as an integrated solution with Qualcomm Snapdragon mobile platforms, and as standalone sensors that can be used with other non-Snapdragon platforms.





Qualcomm said the fingerprint sensors for glass and metal will be available to OEMs this month and should arrive in commercial devices in the first half of 2018. The sensors for displays are expected to be available to OEMs for evaluation in the fourth quarter of 2017.



Apple’s upcoming “iPhone 8″ is rumored to include a fingerprint-sensing display, but the company has reportedly faced significant challenges in its efforts to develop the technology for its radically redesigned flagship device, due to release in the fall.



Apple is currently in a major legal battle with Qualcomm over its LTE modems, so it seems unlikely the company would consider offering its technology for inclusion in future iPhones. However, the announcement at least demonstrates that the technology is viable, which lends further credence to reports that Apple has perfected its own screen-embedded fingerprint recognition solution. The technology will give Apple’s OLED iPhone a significant advantage over its biggest rival, Samsung, which is expected to stick with a rear fingerprint scanner for this year’s Galaxy Note 8.



Apple is expected to unveil the iPhone 8 and more traditional “iPhone 7s” and “iPhone 7s Plus” models around the usual September timeframe for iPhone updates, although rumors have suggested supplies of the more expensive OLED handset could be tight for up to several months after the official debut.

Related Roundup: iPhone 8
Tags: Qualcomm, MWC17, Vivo


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Indecisive water can exist as two different liquids

Researchers at Stockholm University have discovered that water exists in two liquid forms, one more viscous ...

Water is way weirder than you might think. We know it can exist as a solid, liquid and gas, but put it under extreme pressure and it converts into a freaky fourth state called tunneling, and it may even freeze at temperatures it would normally boil. But now, researchers have found that water actually has two different liquid forms, and its weirdness may come from the relationship between those forms.

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Category: Science

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Pillar-less polycarbonate windshield offers a widescreen view

A Tommykaira ZZ with the pillar-less windshield fitted

Modern cars are getting safer, but stronger bodies come with a few caveats. Thick a-pillars are great when you have an accident, but they also ruin outward visibility. Teijin Limited might just have the solution, with plans to build the first pillar-less polycarbonate-resin windshield later this year.

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Category: Automotive

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