Imagine a world without your smartphone. Now step out of your nightmare, take a deep breath and read Youth Inc’s gadget special story. We take you through what you can expect in the delightful world of technology in 2013 and beyond
Gadgets! What would we do without them? Over the years, they have ingrained themselves into our lives and have grafted on as extended limbs.
Just think about it, would you manage to live a single day without your smartphone? How different would life be if tablet computers hadn’t been invented? And the question we ask ourselves every day, how would we live without Google?
Technology’s evolution can be traced to a time when needs were to be met with faster solutions. Now, however, technology has turned into a medium for showcasing innovation, and rather than meeting a demand, it creates demand. Nevertheless, we wouldn’t have it any other way and we continue on our path as the most tech-savvy and gadget-hungry generation of youth the country has ever seen.
Our smallest and largest dreams about machines and mankind have been coming true year after year with advancements that are becoming more and more adept at reaching into our minds and reading our basest needs. With the click of one button or the tap of one finger, we can now accomplish a range of tasks varying from the mundane to the complicated. Our life is intertwining with technology in complex weaves which are only set to get tighter and stronger in 2013.
The big names in the tech game have taken the world by storm with audacious new ideas which will manifest as physical products this year. We have followed the ups and downs of Google, Apple, Microsoft, Samsung and Facebook whose releases this year may either disappoint or enrapture us. We have looked at the world of gaming with advanced consoles and other exciting paraphernalia releasing this year. We have even covered some other gadgets that can only be called briliantly offbeat. But any gadget is only as good as the applications it can support, so we have dived into an ocean of apps, sifted and sorted through the clutter and found the best apps for phones.
The future is here. The gadget revolution has arrived.
BIG IN 2013
We look at releases of the most reputed names coming into 2013 and analyse how they fare
GOOGLE IN 2013:LEADING INNOVATORS
RELEASE DATE: End of year
PRICE: Rs. 40,000 (Expected)
DESCRIPTION: Augmented reality glasses – a wearable device with a display fitted above your eyes
1. Tiny prism display
2. Camera that sees what you see
4. GPS with internet connection
5. Bone induction sound
HOW IT WILL CHANGE YOUR LIFE: You will be able to connect to the internet without having to lift a finger, all you will have to say is “Ok Glass” followed by your command.
VERDICT: Google Glass will make your life available on the Internet for everyone to see. There are also concerns over safety since it may distract you while you are walking on the street or driving – a major accident hazard. But it will make hands free internet connectivity extremely convenient.
RELEASE DATE: India release date unknown
PRICE: Rs. 70,000 – Rs. 81,000
1. Highest pixel density at 2560 x 1700
2. Dual-core Intel i5 processor
3. WiFi and LTE variant laptops
4. Touch screen
VERDICT: Although it will increase performance for both home and office use with internet connectivity, the Chromebook Pixel has arrived too late in the market and is just Google’s attempt at keeping up with the competition.
PRICE: Rs.8,200 – Rs. 11,000 (expected)
1. Qualcomm’s Snapdragon processor
2. Thinner and lighter than previous model
The second generation Nexus 7 will not make much of a change in the market. You are better off picking up one of its rivals.
APPLE IN 2013: MOST ANTICIPATED RELEASES
RELEASE DATE: End of year
DESCRIPTION: A wearable wristband gadget which will let you work simple functions on your iOS device without having to operate it directly.
1. Curved Gorilla Glass
2. Bluetooth to connect to your iPhone or iPod
3. Siri, maps and health monitoring functions (expected)
HOW IT WILL CHANGE YOUR LIFE: For Apple users, the iWatch will be the coolest device to release since Apple’s last product. After all the disappointing past models of smartwatches, Apple will take the market by storm and wash its competitors away.
VERDICT: Considering how poor the smartwatch market has been, this gadget will revolutionise and shake up all the lacklustre competition out there.
RELEASE DATE: November (expected)
DESCRIPTION: Apple will finally enter the television market this year with an HD television set expected with a 60 inch screen
1. Siri, FaceTime, iCloud and iDevice compatibility
2. iRing remote control system
3. A complete SmartTV experience
HOW IT WILL CHANGE YOUR LIFE:
Apple has been aiming to launch itself into the television market for years. With Apple’s trademark features, this will change everyone’s couch potato experience tremendously.
VERDICT: By the specifications, plenty of tolaunch television sets may compete well with Apple, but the iTV may just be the product of the year in this market.
RELEASE DATE: June
1. Improvements on display, camera and processor
2. Fingerprint scanner expected for better security
VERDICT: Apple’s attempt at clawing its way back to the top of the smartphone market, it will be highly anticipated by its loyalists but may not win over the rest.
RELEASE DATE: Third quarter of year
PRICE: Rs. 18,000 (expected)
1. Retina Display
2. Improved pixel density at 2048 x 1536
3. FaceTime HD camera and iSight camera with 1080 HD recording
VERDICT: The most exciting new feature of the iPad Mini 2 will be the incorporation of Apple’s Retina Display technology. Other than that, it seems to be only a minor improvement on the previous model but will still hold its own in the tablet market.
MICROSOFT IN 2013: PLAYING CATCH-UP
RELEASE DATE: Released earlier in the year
PRICE: Student edition – Rs. 5,499. Home and Business editions – Rs. 13,499. Professional edition – Rs. 24,999.
1. Cloud synced
2. Supports touch input
3. Faster interface
VERDICT: The updates to the trusted Microsoft Office are much appreciated. It takes time to get used to but is an improvement to previous versions, especially with the cloud sync feature. It is a bit on the expensive side, though.
RELEASE DATE: India release expected by end of year
PRICE: Rs. 48,000
1. Intel Core i5 processor
2. Intel HD Graphics 4000 card
3. Improved RAM and storage capacity
4. Higher display resolution
VERDICT: This is just Microsoft attempting to breakeven with the tablet computer market. You are better off picking up a competitor’s product, like the iPad Mini with Retina Display.
IllumiRoom, is Microsoft’s foray into the gaming world by incorporating augmented reality into the Xbox 720. IllumiRoom and Kinect 2.0 will bring the game into your room with projections and sensors that will merge the real and gaming worlds
SAMSUNG IN 2013: MOST INNOVATIVE AND REVOLUTIONARY
RELEASE DATE: By end of year (expected)
DESCRIPTION: 55-inch OLED (organic LED) television, the first of its kind.
1. Multi-View feature will allow two people to watch different, full HD content
2. Comes with 3D glasses and personal stereo speakers
3. Will provide better display than conventional LED televisions
HOW IT WILL CHANGE YOUR LIFE:
It is expected to provide better television quality than ever before since it is the first time organic LED technology is being utilised in a screen this large. VERDICT: With quad-core processor, voice and gesture controls and Smart TV functions, it will be the best in the television market when it is released.
RELEASE DATE: April
PRICE: Rs. 40,000
1. 8 core processor with 2 GB RAM
2. 5-inch touchscreen display at 1920 x 1080 full HD
3. Smart Scroll, Smart Pause, Smart Switch and other functions
VERDICT: The S4 is serious competition to Apple’s iPhone. It is highly anticipated and has shown several top-of-the-line features.
FACEBOOK IN 2013: PLAYING ITS OWN GAME
RELEASE DATE: April
PRICE: Dependent on price of handset
DESCRIPTION: It will be a set of customizations to improve the Facebook app on your Android device to turn it into a more Facebook-centric device.
1. ChatHeads, a feature which pops up the photo of the user who messages you.
2. Multitask functioning which allows you to chat without closing down other apps.
VERDICT: It will give Android users a better Facebook experience.
SAMSUNG FLEXIBLE AMOLED
Samsung’s flexible display screen may not be available in a product yet, but creates amazing possibilities for the future. We may soon wear cell phones on our wrists!
Volume 2 Issue 11