Trends with Benefits: Cheap VR, 3D-printed teeth, ‘Fire and Forget’ robots


The Microsoft Surface Book is coming out in a few days and Matt got his hands on one early. Naturally, we peppered him with questions for our “live” review. Verdict: It’s a pretty exciting product, minus a few … issues.

VR is going mainstream, and the good news is, it’s not going to cost a fortune. We talk about some of the less expensive options out there recently, from Google Cardboard to Homido and many others. But, if you’re going to go with a VR system, would it be better to just wait for the Gear VR and Oculus coming out within the next few months?

HBO’s CEO, Richard Plepler, recently made a bold statement regarding the lack of partners for HBO Now. Many of the company’s traditional cable partners are reluctant, or outright refusing to allow the standalone service on their platforms, but Plepler thinks it would help them all to make more money.

In a combination of tech we haven’t really thought about until now, we discuss 3D printing and … dentistry! Researchers from the Netherlands claim to have developed a way to create artificial teeth that repel microbes at a molecular level. Of course, this leads to discussion of the future of grills.

Leeds University has a robotics research team currently working on a fleet of civil-service robots. There will be three types: perch and repair; perceive and patch; and fire and forget. That last one could be one of the most terrifying terms ever.

Also, if Charlize Theron is listening to today’s show, Caleb would like you to please follow him on Twitter @Caleb_Denison.

Today’s episode features Caleb Denison, Matt Smith, Drew Prindle and host Greg Nibler. Please subscribe and share Trends with Benefits and send in your questions to podcast@digitaltrends.com. We also broadcast the show live on Periscope every Thursday around 2:30 p.m. Pacific. Watch us make the show next week!

Gaming

The history of Battle Royale: From mod to worldwide phenomenon

Battle royale games like PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds’ and Fortnite have become the biggest trend in video games. The genre is also pushing the envelope in streaming and eSports in a way that might hint at the future of the industry.
Smart Home

This alarm clock uses targeted light and sound to wake you, but not your partner

The Wake v2 isn't like your typical bedside alarm. Instead, it wakes you by shining a soft light directly into your face, thereby not disturbing the person sharing a bed with you. Pretty smart, huh?
Computing

AMD Navi: Everything you need to know

With a reported launch in 2019, AMD is focusing on the mid-range market with its next-generation Navi GPU. Billed as a successor to Polaris, Navi promises to deliver better performance to consoles, like Sony's PlayStation 5.
Photography

Get your Sagan on with 60 awe-inspiring photos of the final frontier

Few things instill a sense of wonder quite like the final frontier. The best space photos show off the beauty of Earth, our solar system, and the far corners of the universe. Here are our current favorites.
Podcasts

TWB Podcast: iPhone price cut rumor; smart home hack; delivery robot

Apple lawsuits and iPhone price drops; Smart Home Devices hacked remotely; Autonomous Delivery Robots may be closer to reality.
Podcasts

TWB Podcast: CES preview; LG 8K television; Home assistant takeover

CES Preview and Digital Trends coverage; LG 88" 8K television; Home assistants will be taking over everything; the strange tech of CES.
Movies & TV

Between the Streams: A brutal ‘Sicario 2’ trailer, 10 more years of Star Wars

It's lightsabers, polka kings, and sequels galore this week on Between the Streams, as we look at a wide variety of new content hitting screens, including everything from a Bright sequel to Star Wars Episode IX news.
Podcasts

Trends With Benefits podcast: Our favorite tech from CES 2018

It's our annual episode from CES! We've seen a lot of great tech this year, and have been surprised by a few announcements as well, so we discuss our favorite products and announcements this year.
Podcasts

TWB Podcast: Best TVs of CES; emerging tech; Amazon/Apple 2nd HQ; Falcon X

We'll cover the Best TVs of CES, some of more fringe emerging tech, Amazon and Apple's 2nd Headquarter statuses and the Falcon X Heavy rocket may finally be launching.
Movies & TV

Between the Streams: Apple and Kristen Wiig, ‘Solo’ synopsis, Black Widow movie?

This week on Between the Streams: A comedy series with Kristin Wiig and Reese Witherspoon from Apple, a Catch 22 miniseries from George Clooney, rumors of a Spider-Man and Venom meet-up, a Black Widow stand-alone film, and much more.
Podcasts

TWB Podcast: iPhone X discontinued?, Galaxy S9 first look, 50 Cent’s bitcoins

Apple iPhone X discontinued: After a week of rumors, it seems that Apple may indeed be discontinuing the current version of the iPhone X. KGI Securities predicts that this will occur later this year, when potential replacements for the X…
Podcasts

TWB Podcast: Amazon Echo vs. Google Home vs. Apple HomePod, Galaxy X

With the three big names in Home Assistants all taking aim at each other, we break down the Amazon Echo, Google Home, and Apple HomePod. Samsung may be debuting a foldable phone this year and we'll recap some highlights from Outdoor…
Movies & TV

Between the Streams: CBS’ desperate ‘Murphy Brown’ revival, Super Bowl trailers

This week on Between the Streams, we'll be discussing all the weird new sitcom reboots (and how desperate they are), Netflix's new series Altered Carbon, all the new trailers we expect to see during the Super Bowl, and so much more.
Podcasts

TWB Podcast: SpaceX triumph, Spotify vs. Apple Music, Apple Watch health

After the success of the Falcon launch, what's next for SpaceX and Tesla? Spotify is the kind of streaming music, but Apple Music is hot on the trail. The Apple Watch may soon provide your doctor with valuable information.