Tech Talk: New iPad, BBC 3D, Gaming with Brain-Waves, Steampunk USB

This Issue: New iPads, no more 3D BBC, gaming with your head, Lego video-games sale and a must-have gadget for you steam-punks!

Apple’s new iPad set for September release – new iPad mini delayed

Apple is expected to announce its fifth-generation 9.7-inch iPad in September, though its next-generation iPad mini may be held up pending  further upgrades in specifications. The rumours are coming via their upstream suppliers, who have finished preparing for the production of the new iPad, hence no likely to be any changes to specifications.

In addition to the Retina Display, the new iPad (5) features a slimmer bezel to give bigger viewing area, reduced LED lighting tubes, and therefore improved battery longevity. But for the new iPad mini, those sources indicate that Apple is still considering upgrading to the Retina Display – if the company decides to do so, the product’s release may be delayed to the end of the fourth quarter, as the rumoured key problems to date have been the very poor yields on the smaller screen. In parallel, Apple have been asking its partners to further shrink the next-gen iPad mini’s bezel, aiming for a design more akin to Samsung and HTC’s phablets.

BBC to take 3-year Break from 3D Breakthroughs

Recently it was announced that the Doctor Who 50th anniversary special was to be broadcast available in 3D. However it appears that generally Auntie Beeb is picking up a low-key vibe in response to the watching 3D broadcast TV at home. To date, the BBC has a rather small catalogue of content in 3D, some of the Olympics coverage to ahem – Strictly Come Dancing. In fact, the bible of the Beeb, the Radio Times cites that 3D coverage of the Olympic Opening Ceremony was only watched by around half of all 3D TV owners in the UK! So the Beeb has decided to curb 3D development for a period of three years from the end of this year: Kim Shillinglaw, the BBC’s  head of 3D, told the Radio Times, “Watching 3D is quite a hassly experience in the home. You have got to find your glasses before switching on the TV. I think  when people watch TV they concentrate in a different way.”

I think she has pretty much nailed it!

A New Gaming Headset that literally Zaps your Brain with Electricity

US company Labs has developed a headset which shoots electrical signals into the brain’s frontal lobe, in order to improve focus when gaming! The headset’s four electrodes deploy transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS), similar to a techniques used in mental health (well that speaks volumes). According to them, this will “overclock your brain”, “increase the plasticity of your brain,” and “make your synapses fire faster.” Current is applied through an iPhone app (how ridiculous does that sound!) that allows the user to control the intensity & duration. The makers stress that this is not a medical device, nor regulated by the US Food and Drug Administration. It claims the device meets the required regulatory safety standards, but like a roller-coaster ride, certain groups such as epilepsy sufferers, those with implants, pregnant mothers and people under 18, should avoid using the headset. As I’m writing this, I can’t help but hope that I’m not alone in thinking that this is such a bad idea, and when clones started appearing from China on eBay, they would make the ideal gift for someone you never wanted to see again…

Today’s Coolest Gadget: Waterproof Steampunk USB Drive

Okay, so this is a little old, but I just happened across it. This is a Waterproof Steampunk USB Drive with 16GB of storage, is waterproof and meticulously hand-made from a range of materials which include brass, copper, glass, watch parts and a genuine quartz crystal.

best-latest-top-new-fun-high-technology-coolest-gadgets-16GB-Waterproof-Steampunk-USB-Drive_31 best-latest-top-new-fun-high-technology-coolest-gadgets-16GB-Waterproof-Steampunk-USB-Drive_2

It has a brilliantly blue LED light which engages when it is plugged in, and the cap features a lanyard for attaching – it just looks cool, a real conversation piece in a meeting!

Finally, before I forget, Warner Bros Games are having a bit of a fire sale, and their Lego Harry Potter & Lego Batman games (full versions) have been reduced to £0.69 ($0.99) for a limited time only…

Sources: DigiTimes, Radio Times, Labs,

Reporter: SilverFox

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One comment

  1. Marco /

    where can i buy this in south africa???

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