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Hopping on the modular mobile electronics party train is the Cubimorph, an interactive device comprised of a chain of cubes, each of which has a touchscreen on all sides. Whether you need a phone, a gaming console, or a tablet, you can quickly build Cubimorph into the hand-held device you need at any given moment. Plus, it’s as much fun to play with as a Rubik’s Cube, only less frustrating.
+ The Eva is a tabletop, indirect up-light that creates the effect of candlelight or even fireflies in a jar. Ahhh…
A potential game-changer for residents of drought-struck areas like California, the Edyn Water Valve is an internet-connected water valve that uses data from the company’s proprietary soil sensor and local weather systems to automatically water your garden if your soil needs moisture. A mobile app lets users control irrigation, so no more having to hire the kid across the street to water your garden while you’re in Tahiti.
The limited-edition programmable dash button, based on the Amazon dash button hardware, lets you program Amazon web services without writing device-specific code. Code the button’s logic in the cloud and configure button clicks to make calls, unlock or start your car, or control your home appliances. You can even use it to order a pizza.
Black + Decker’s new Smartech Bluetooth-enabled batteries sync with a mobile app you can use to monitor battery life and track your tools’ location. The batteries, which work with all Black + Decker’s 20V Max tools, also have built-in USB ports that let you power your phone or tablet.
San Francisco-based startup accelerator Hax held its eighth demo day on May 18, featuring several robotics, wearables, and IoT startups. Another accelerator, Highway1, held its sixth demo day, featuring companies like Okio, which makes a kids’ wearable that allows parents to communicate with their child in urgent situations.
+ Three Hax startups, one of which is a wearable designed to help users break unhealthy habits, were named “Startups to Watch” by TechCrunch.
Fitbit has purchased Coin, the makers of a credit card that digitally centralizes all your credit cards, so Fitbit can gain an edge in the wearable payments arena.
+ Microsoft is selling the Nokia Future Phone business it acquired in 2013 to FoxConn.
The most interesting developments announced at Google I/O this year are Daydream, Google’s new VR platform, Allo, a messaging app with a chatbot, Duo, a FaceTime competitor, and Google Home, a new (and gender neutral) home assistant.
Patents that were issued before the turn of the century are beginning to expire, allowing 3D printing innovators to make new waves using liquid-based, powder-based, and metal-based technologies. We’re looking forward to seeing the new developments!
Next week we’re excited to host some amazing experts on hardware user experience and design for a panel discussion on designing for the user. If you haven’t signed up yet for the event, you can still get tickets here.
Meet us at Bay Area Maker Faire this weekend! We’ll be the ones at the Pow pow power racing series, racing a yellow Lamborghini power wheels in banana suits. Seriously. Check out a behind-the-scenes look at our car build process for this very awesome race at Maker Faire.