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DT Daily: Will.I.Am’s smartwatch, London’s new tube trains, airport helper bot

Today on DT Daily: Will.i.am could be about to launch a smart watch- and a new online streaming music service, futuristic driverless trains have been revealed in London, and a new robot is on the job helping out confused passengers at the Indianapolis airport.

Well.i.never thought… that Will.i.am’s smart watch could be coming our way by the end of the week, but that could happen if the latest rumor reports are true. First spotted earlier this year, the singer’s newest tech project may be revealed on Thursday in San Francisco, and end up competing with Google’s Android Wear smartwatches, and the Apple Watch, of course.

Unlike most of its rivals, Will.i.am’s high-tech wrist wear could make and receive calls, and also serve as a hub for a brand new streaming music service, which is said to have been created by the singer and UK music company 7Digital. When we caught a glimpse of the watch back in April, it featured a curved touchscreen, and could run apps for using social networks. We’ll have to wait until the end of the week to find out more.

Google may be working on driverless cars, but the transport authority in London is hard at work on driverless tube trains, which it plans to introduce within the next ten years. The automatic trains are being given a new futuristic design, inspired by the city’s contemporary architecture and famous landmarks.

The trains are just one part of a huge $26 billion overhaul of London’s underground tube network, and will also feature walk-through carriages, plus digital displays showing live travel updates. Despite not being needed to actually do any driving, Tube drivers have been assured they won’t lose their jobs, as just like Google’s cars, extensive testing will need to be carried out before the trains become completely automated. What about their jobs then? Well…

If you’re lost and wandering around the Indianapolis International airport in the lead-up to the holiday season, then don’t look for an actual person for help, try finding one of the new customer service robots instead. Well, we say robot, but what we actually mean is an iPad fixed to a Segway-style scooter, complete with a polo short on a coat hanger to make it a little more, um, human. Right, yeah, that’s working…

The operator sits safely in an office while the ‘bot roams the airport, using video chat technology to help out baffled passengers. Apparently costing $2,500, the robot – which doesn’t have a name yet – has been a hit with airport visitors, although why the customer service reps can’t just get up and walk around the airport helping people, isn’t well explained…

Today’s host is Greg Nibler.