Smartphones can do a lot of things, but most are rather delicate devices. You can rely on special cases and try your best to protect the handset, or you could look to the Samsung Galaxy S4 Active, a ruggedized version of the Galaxy S4. This Android-powered smartphone can survive a bit water as well as dust and dirt, or even a drop on the ground.
It features a 5-inch Full HD display – TFT LCD rather than AMOLED in order to provide that ruggedness – and if offers an 8megapixel rear camera, as well as a 2-megapixel front-facing camera, plus a water-resistant earphone jack. For those who want to take their smartphone on the go the S4 Active might be the smart move to make.
Water doesn’t go so well with most mobile phones, but a lot of people use their handset to snap photos. If a day at the beach or pool is how to you plan this spend this summer than perhaps you should consider the Sony Xperia ZR “waterproof” mobile smartphone. This Android-powered device can snap photos and even Full HD videos underwater.
It features a 13megapixel camera along with a 4.6-inch HD Reality display. This is also a serious phone, powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon S4 Pro quad-core 1.5 GHz process and runs on the 4G LTE networks. But for those who like to get wet this might be a smart phone indeed. Video after the jump
Jogging has been around since the 1960s or so. Before that it was just called “roadwork.” But today it is just one of many types of running that people engage in around the world, and now thanks to apps and mobile handsets you can go for a Yog instead.
The concept of this new mobile social network app is that it allows users to run with or even against another person in real time, even if they are on the other side of the country or world. The Yog network and app connects you with other runners, so you can join them or race them. Joggers with the app can set up the date, time and distance and then invite others to take part. It can work via iPhone contacts or Facebook friends, but users can also join the running group. Video after the jump
Since the form factor on the iPhone has largely remained the same – until the larger screen and thinner body of the iPhone 5 – case manufacturers have had great success offering cases for the single-model. Android and other smartphones, however, have very different form factors, and therefore don’t have as many options. This is why it’s great to see the MarineCase II, a universal-sized waterproof hard case for large screen smartphones.
The MarineCase II is IP58 certified against sand and water intrusion. It protects against water, sand and dust. It is shock and impact resistant against scratches, dents and screen shatter. The case can go up to 20 feet – or six meters – under water and capture video while being submerged. Manufacturer Concord Keystone makes the MarineCase II with a high-impact polycarbonate, integrated with a silicone surface for even more protection. The case is shock and impact-proof for drops and bumps. Read the rest of this entry »
The Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) this week finalized standards for sports and fitness equipment using Bluetooth wireless technology sensors. The guidelines are for Bluetooth v4.0, which is a low energy technology. These guidelines are geared toward sensors using Bluetooth that measure spead and cadence for running and cycling activity. The new standard dictates specification for applications that can include running cadence, stride length, total distance or cycling speed, distance and pedal cadence. Read the rest of this entry »
A helmet can help protect the wearer’s head in case of a fall or accident, but it can’t call for help. What is an individual to do if he or she falls while out alone and far from home? ICEdot (In Case of Emergency) is working to provide a solution, and the company has partnered with SenseTech LLC of Denver to develop and launch a helmet-mounted impact sensor.
In the event of an accident the sensor determines the crucial forces, and can activate communications on the wearer’s smartphone to send a request for help. This could be used with cycling, skateboarding, snowboarding, skiing and even motocross helmets. Read the rest of this entry »
Consider this the “main course” for fitness buffs who want to compare stats with others. MapMyRide has unveiled the Courses feature that should inspire some (hopefully friendly) competition) for users of the service on iPhone, BlackBerry and Android.
The Courses offers four categories including climbs, descents, member create routes, and actual stage races events. As with Strava the “fastest rider” in any of these can get social medals, but it is also more than just having the best time. With all the official courses there is also a new monthly point system, complete with leader board that track event leaders, those with the most points in climbs and descents, the “guru” or person who rode a course the most times, and even the fastest times. For those who want to just push themselves there is the ability to track personal bests. Read the rest of this entry »
There are all sorts of ways to measure distance, speed and even altitude on a mobile smartphone. Now Shaka has added a wind gage, which can be useful for shooting, sailing and other sports where windage needs to be addressed. This portable accessory plugs into the iPhone’s 3.55 headphone jack of all things to gather wind speed.
It can measure and keep history of wind speed, direction and even temperature and the results can be shared and crowdsourced.
It is pre-production but should be blowing out soon.
With a smartphone you can easily search for a seafood restaurant, or you could use it to go directly to the source. While we’ve seen gizmos such as the Magellan eXplorist line of GPS devices that now include fishing hotspots map, once there you still need to see if the fish are actually there to bite.
For that the Deeper FishFinder might just do the trick. It is a sonar-enable waterproof ball that won’t sink but it will sync with the smartphone. The Bluetooth-enabled device can scan the water and send location information directly to an iOS or Android phone or tablet. It shows the approximate location of fish with a depth chart as well so you can cast off in just the right spot. Read the rest of this entry »
Last month at CTIA we got our hands on a ThingSling. More accurately, a ThingSling got stuck to our phone. This elastic strap fixes to the back of any phone with a 3M adhesive. And boy does that thing stick.
We wrote some first impressions of the strap, but now that it’s been a few weeks, I thought I’d go a little deeper on my thoughts. The strap has a rigid plastic frame that anchors the adhesive. It sticks to just about any phone or case, though John Murphy, the ThingSling creator, said it doesn’t stick to silicone used in many phone cases. While it’ll come off easily when I want it off, I haven’t had any trouble with the ThingSling trying to come off the Cygnett Frost Case on my phone. Read the rest of this entry »
In this of smartphones, tablets and other connected devices the old “flip flop” seems positively passé, but there are times when the clamshell design can come in handy – such as well off trekking in the wilds. That’s when a smartphone can become broken and thus useless all too easily.
Kyocera thus saw this and has introduced a flip phone exclusively for Sprint, but the Kyocera DuraXT is more than just a Star-Tec in a new body. This is also a smartphone! And it has some smart features, beginning with the rubber, non-slip Dura-Grip outer casing to ensure that it isn’t dropped while off hiking. It is also water resistant up to a meter for around 30 minutes. It is Military Standard 801G Spec compliant for dust, shock, vibration, temperature extremes, humidity, solar radiation, salt fog, rain and water immersion.
Other features include a 3.2megapixel camera/camcorder; Sprint Direct Connect for instant, one-to-one push-to-talk calling on Sprint; Group Connect with up to 20 users; Bluetooth 2.0 and offers browser-based email for access to POP3 and IMAP accounts, as well as SMS and MMS messaging.
As we’ve seen competition – friendly competition – can help be a major motivating way to keep up with fitness goals. And Fitbug will help users stay motivated with the new Games Framework and iPhone app that allows taems or individuals to compete against each other in a variety of virtual challenges.
This new capability encompasses Google map-based progress and hotspot graphics, as well as Chatterbox and social media features to keep users motivated and connected. It also offers a team leader boards, and builds upon Fitbug’s previous league challenge, Fantasy Footfall. These games can further be customized to any route and branded to meet client requirements. The new games platform has been designed to enable Fitbug to provide a library of readily available challenges to clients and, where required, quickly build custom challenges for specific client requirements. Read the rest of this entry »