Intel announces its intention to wed wearable tech

intel bets wearable tech smart headset reference design

It looks increasingly likely that 2014 will be the breakthrough year for wearable technology. We’ve seen wristbands and headsets galore, from various companies, and now Intel is getting in on the act. Intel CEO, Brian Krzanich, unveiled a range of interesting wearable devices at his pre-show keynote for International CES.

“Wearables are not everywhere today because they aren’t yet solving real problems and they aren’t yet integrated with our lifestyles,” said Krzanich. “We’re focused on addressing this engineering innovation challenge. Our goal is, if something computes and connects, it does it best with Intel inside.”

The company briefly showed off a prototype smartwatch, which adheres to the usual feature set, but is apparently also capable of receiving location-based notifications. Krzanich didn’t elaborate on the details. There was also mention of a partnership with Barneys, The Council of Fashion Designers of America, to create a smart bracelet, part of Krzanich’s plan to work with fashion companies to make wearable devices with style.

Intel_Smart_Ear-Buds_Reference-Design_pIntel revealed smart earphones aimed at the fitness industry next. These sensor packed earbuds are designed to measure your heart rate and record biometric and workout data. They look similar to LG’s Heart Rate Earphones and signal an impending war for the fitness tracker market, which is leading the charge to wearable tech. Intel’s earphones are powered by your smartphone jack. That means there’s no need to charge them and no need for a separate wristband. You just need a tracking app on your smartphone and the earphones will do the rest.

Perhaps the most interesting reveal was Jarvis, a distinctive Bluetooth headset that’s designed to wrap around the back of your ear and pair with an Android app on your smartphone. You use voice commands to control it and it’s always listening, so there’s no power button. The headset can use your phone to get directions, perform a Web search, find restaurants nearby, make a call, and generally act as a virtual assistant, much like Siri or Google Now.

Intel_Smart_Wireless_Charging_Bowl_reference_designHow do you power Jarvis up? Intel has thought of everything, including a charging bowl. This is a wireless charging device that you drop Jarvis or any other wearables you may have into and it starts charging them up automatically.

These are typical reference designs from Intel. As CEO Brian Krzanich explained, they are part of Intel’s push to “make everything smart”. The company won’t be releasing these products itself, but rather it’s hoping to inspire some partners to carry some of these ideas through to market.

Earlier in the day Intel showed off its new RealSense 3D camera which promises to bring gesture controls and facial recognition to computing.

Gaming

These are the best video games you shouldn't leave 2018 without

Developers showed up with a number of amazing games this year. Each capitalized on something unique but there's always one that outdoes them all. Here are our picks for the best video games of 2018 and game of the year.
Movies & TV

Lose the torrents. Here's how to watch 'Game of Thrones' online (legally)

Game of Thrones is one of the most popular shows on TV, but unless you're a cable subscriber, finding a way to watch isn't always easy. Check out our guide on how to watch online, whether you prefer using HBO, Hulu, or Amazon.
Digital Trends Live

Digital Trends Live: Amazon Go expansions, the robocall onslaught, more

On this episode of Digital Trends' live morning show, Digital Trends Live, hosts Greg Nibler and Jeremy Kaplan explored the news of the day, including Amazon Go's potential expansion, the robocall onslaught, and more.
Movies & TV

'Prime'-time TV: Here are the best shows on Amazon Prime right now

There's more to Amazon Prime than free two-day shipping, including access to a number of phenomenal shows at no extra cost. To make the sifting easier, here are our favorite shows currently streaming on Amazon Prime.
Mobile

Want to watch Netflix in bed or browse the web? We have a tablet for everyone

There’s so much choice when shopping for a new tablet that it can be hard to pick the right one. From iPads to Android, these are our picks for the best tablets you can buy right now whatever your budget.
Mobile

McLaren puts the pedal to the metal in special-edition OnePlus 6T

The OnePlus 6T is yet another flagship killer smartphone, bringing powerful specifications to a much lower price than the competition. Now, OnePlus has teamed up with McLaren for the OnePlus 6T McLaren Edition.
Mobile

G’day, Google: U.S. users can now give Assistant a British or Australian accent

U.S. Google Assistant users can give their Assistant a different voice. Google has updated Assistant with the ability for users to give it either a British or Australian accent, which could make it a little more personal for some.
Music

Tune in to the best internet radio stations for your listening pleasure

Even in the streaming era, radio stations get some of the best exclusives and curate some of the finest handpicked playlists around. Here are the best internet radio stations, for your listening pleasure.
Computing

Microsoft’s latest patent paves the way for Andromeda dual-screen mobile device

The latest patent discovery from Microsoft showcases a new hinge design for quickly opening a dual-screen mobile device with a single hand. Could this be additional proof surrounding the rumors of the company's Project Andromeda device?
Mobile

Need to record calls on an iPhone? Check out our handy guide

Are you wondering how to record calls on your iPhone? It isn't as easy as you might think, but we'll walk you through the process of doing so with Google Voice, and identify several other apps and external voice recorders that can help.
Home Theater

Set your ears free with the best completely wireless earbuds

If you can't stand the tangle of cords, or you're just excited about completely wireless earbuds, you're going to need some help separating the wheat from the chaff. Our list serves up the best true wireless earbuds around.
Mobile

Apple is spending $1 billion to hire up to 15,000 new employees in Austin

Apple has announced a series of expansions across the U.S. -- including a massive expansion to the company's Austin campus that will see it spending $1 billion to accommodate for up to 15,000 new employees.
Outdoors

Google Maps makes it easier than ever to find a Lime bike or scooter

Google Maps has added a new feature that helps you find a Lime bike or scooter in just a few taps. The feature currently works in 11 U.S. cities served by Lime, with more coming next year.
Mobile

Leave the laptop at home, the iPad Pro is the travel buddy to take on vacay

The iPad Pro is a powerful tablet that's perfect for creatives and professionals. How does it fare when traveling with it as a laptop replacement? We took it on a two week trek in Japan to find out.