CoSync lets other people use your phone’s camera without ever touching your phone

cameraYou know that moment when someone famous walks down the street and there’s a sudden pandemonium? You want to snap a picture of said famous person, then all of a sudden some super tall guy gets in your way and just won’t budge. Not only is he blocking your view, now you can’t Instagram whatever it was you wanted to show off. In most circumstances, this would end with you looking over at the person perfectly placed to get the ideal shot with a mixture of dejection and jealousy. So what if you could just use their phone’s camera to get a shot for yourself?

A new system called CoSync aims to make that kind of inter-device sharing possible. Created by a team at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology led by Eyal Toledano, CoSync is a software that allows multiple mobile devices to link up via Bluetooth or Wifi, and offer users the ability to share features of each device from camera to microphone or similar inputs.

In a test carried out by Toledano using a prototype system, six different phones were linked and controlled by one “master” device. That master device sent a signal to all six phones, telling them use their camera flash on a specifically timed instance so that all angles were evenly lighted and the final picture avoided overexposure. The result was compared to pictures taken with a single device, and was judged to have outperformed each one in terms of lighting and final photograph. Such timed multiple flashes, Toledano explains, could also be used to avoid red-eye in photographs in future.

In a separate test, multiple phones placed around two people throwing a ball back and forth managed to capture a series of staggered images that, according to a report in New Scientist, allowed Toledano and his team to “recreate the ‘bullet time’ effect pioneered in the film The Matrix.”

The benefits of the CoSync technology are clear; they’ll allow for the quicker dissemination of information and experience, especially for smaller, more intimate events where only a few would have the chance to experience what was happening otherwise. The potential use of the technology as a security system or way to keep track of a fast-moving event is also there…

Still, as with most sharing innovations, there is a potential for abuse with CoSync. After all, this is essentially TeamViewer for mobile devices, albeit within certain parameters; Allowing remote access for laptops and desktop systems has opened virtual doors for hackers to hijack the computers in question. If you open your phone’s camera up to other people to use, would it really be that much of a surprise if they started taking pictures or recorded sound of things you would rather keep private?

Mobile

OnePlus will show off a prototype of its 5G phone at MWC

OnePlus will be among the first companies to put the new Snapdragon 855 processor into a phone and will also release a separate and more expensive 5G phone in 2019 with the help of U.K. network EE.
Mobile

How to check your IMEI number on an iPhone, Android, or other device

If you're wondering how to check your IMEI number, then this guide will show you how to do it, regardless of what phone you have. You can find your IMEI number using the dialer, in settings, or in a couple of other places.
Mobile

You can now get Google Fi SIM cards straight from Best Buy

Google's wireless service known as Project Fi, now goes by the name of Google Fi. The company also announced the service is now compatible with a majority of Android phones, as well as iPhones. Here's everything you need to know about…
Mobile

The Moto G4 Plus is finally getting the update to Android Oreo

We've reached out to every major Android hardware manufacturer and asked them when they will update their devices to the latest version of Google's mobile operating system, Android 8.0 Oreo.
Emerging Tech

After a record-setting 15 years, NASA ends Opportunity rover’s tour of Mars

NASA has officially called it quits on its record-setting Mars rover Opportunity, eight months after last hearing from the lander. The Rover landed on the Red Planet in early 2004.
Emerging Tech

With CabinSense, cars will soon know who’s riding in them and respond accordingly

What if your car could know who's riding in it and customize the entertainment and safety options accordingly? That’s what's promised by the new CabinSense in-car Occupancy Monitoring System.
Product Review

Yuneec’s Mantis Q will make you wish you bought a DJI drone

Yuneec’s high-end drones are arguably the ones to beat in terms of flight control, design, and their photographic capabilities. But the company has struggled to make a low-end drone that’s worth buying, and the Mantis Q is proof of that…
Emerging Tech

NASA’s ‘Refabricator’ lets astronauts recycle 3D-printed tools to make new ones

The International Space Station just received a fancy new gadget in the form of a Refabricator, a machine capable of 3D printing using recycled plastic materials. Here's how it works.
Emerging Tech

Words are so 2018. The Peeqo robot speaks exclusively in GIFs and video clips

Move over, Amazon Echo! Peeqo is a cute robot that will answer your spoken word questions by displaying a specially selected short video or GIF. Because, you know, it’s the year 2019.
Emerging Tech

Airbus will stop making the world’s biggest passenger plane

Airbus announced this week that it will stop building the world's biggest passenger plane in 2021. The maker of the double-decker A380 said a changing market and lack of orders gave it little choice but to end production.
Emerging Tech

Exploding vape pen battery starts fire on SkyWest flight

A vape pen battery caused a fire in an overhead bin on a SkyWest Airlines flight on Wednesday. It's the latest in a string of incidents where faulty or poorly made lithium-ion batteries have caused gadgets to catch fire.
Emerging Tech

Photosynthesizing artificial leaf may be the air-cleaning tool we’ve dreamed of

Engineers from the University of Illinois at Chicago have invented an artificial leaf which could both clean up our air and provide a cost-effective type of fuel. Here's how it works.
Mobile

These 13 gadgets walk a fine line between ingenious and insane

The annual avalanche of devices and gadgets is astounding, but how many will succeed? A few are destined to spark new trends, while the majority fade deservedly into obscurity. We look at some gadgets on the border of brilliant and bonkers.
Emerging Tech

A.I.-powered website creates freakishly lifelike faces of people who don’t exist

No, this isn't a picture of a missing person. It's a face generated by a new artificial intelligence on the website ThisPersonDoesNotExist.com. Here's how the impressive A.I. works.