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Friday, April 4, 2014



Let's be real: Amazon isn't going to stop until you can go your entire life without setting foot in an actual brick-and-mortar store. Now the company wants to make buying groceries and sundries from its AmazonFresh same-day delivery service even easier, and it's doing it with a tiny little gadget called the Dash. Yes, move over Fire TV -- Amazon's newest bit of hardware is a free (for now?), WiFi-capable barcode scanner.



Alright, maybe it's a bit more complex than that. It appears to be a pint-sized laser scanner LED scanner that'll capture the barcode of whatever items you need, but you can add to your list by speaking the name of the product into a built-in microphone. That voice-recognition bit seems like it would be better suited to generic products like apples, but the teaser video shows a young lady adding guitar strings to her cart -- presumably you can fine-tune choices like that once you jump onto the AmazonFresh site or mobile apps.

Word of the Dash definitely came as a surprise (especially on a lazy spring afternoon), but it falls right in line with Amazon's existing hardware plans. These days the e-commerce giant is all about pushing low-cost gadgets to reduce the friction of buying more stuff. Itching to read some Feynman? Fire up the ol' Kindle. Need to watch the last season of Luther? It's just a few clicks away on the Fire TV. What's really neat (if maybe a little scary) is that Amazon has finally found a way to make that formula work for real, physical products. Sadly, chances are you won't be using one of these things anytime soon. The AmazonFresh service is still only live in parts of California and Washington State, though rumors maintain that New York will get access to the program at some point.



Correction: We thought the Dash used a laser like most run-of-the-mill barcode scanners, but Amazon has confirmed that it actually uses an LED scanner instead. Sorry for the mix-up.


Will.i.am hasn't exactly had the best track record with hardware projects, but that doesn't seem to have dampened his enthusiasm for buzzy gadgets at all. That's why he showed off -- what else? -- his own smartwatch during a recent appearance on a British chat show called Alan Carr: Chatty Man.

"I started the company myself," he said before apparently tapping at a wrist-mounted touchscreen. "I funded it, used my own money to develop it."



The rapper-turned-entrepreneur is no stranger to tech (Intel named him its "Director of Creative Innovation" for reasons we can't quite fathom) but we'd advise you keep a few grains of salt handy anyway. We get a very brief glimpse at a display that actually seems to work, though the phone dialing sounds and music that he supposedly played seemed a bit too loud to be genuine. That said, he claims that his smartwatch doesn't need to be connected to a smartphone -- it can apparently stream stored music via Bluetooth and make calls all on its lonesome. Not enough for you? He also mentions it can access Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

So is this the real deal, or is Mr. I. Am a dedicated troll? Who knows, but if it's the latter he's really committed to the con: eagle-eyed forum goers at Smartwatch Fans snapped some images of that device strapped to his wrist while he was on the The Voice UK earlier this week. We've reached out to his camp for more info, and we'll update this story if they ever get back to us.

Update: A new tweet from the man himself indicates the device could launch in just a few months.



As reported earlier, Timbaland will take the lead in the upcoming posthumous release from the late King, and you can peep a brief trailer of the anticipated project above, as well as peep the cover for the deluxe edition below. This is gona be crazy..

-WassupFred



#RIP #KingOfPop

MrNes the SmoothFella boy Return with his latest cut of the That BoneFace Project!!! The production on this is insane with MrNes putting his flava on it.. Check the vid shot by MastermindRichy aka RolledbyRichy.. Leave your thoughts. Salute

Follow Nes @MrNes

Tuesday, March 18, 2014



Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) is reportedly looking to open its first retail store in Manhattan’s trendy Soho neighborhood, just blocks from where arch rival Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has one of its biggest retail locations. According to a report from Crain’s, Google is close to signing a lease for retail space located at 131 Greene St. for what would be the tech company’s first retail store.

Crain’s reports that Greene Street has become a popular area of Soho, also boasting storefronts from brands like Louis Vuitton, Tiffany’s, and Stella McCartney, among other high-end retailers. The cobblestone street has come to rival the popularity of other Soho areas like Spring Street, Prince Street, and West Broadway. Apple’s Soho location is located on Prince Street, just blocks from the space Google is looking to buy.

The publication added that the arrival of Google could drive up the rent on Greene Street even more, just as Apple’s store did for Prince Street. Real estate brokers cited by the publication said that rent and property value on the street has already skyrocketed in recent years, and the arrival of the first Google store will likely drive prices up even further. The store would draw more foot traffic to the street, which will then increase the price of store fronts looking to benefit from that growth in traffic.

The question remains what Google would sell in a brick-and-mortar store. The company is not as hardware-focused as Apple and recently sold off its smartphone branch Motorola Mobility. While the store likely won’t have smartphones, Google could use it to sell its Google Glass wearable tech and Chromebooks, and eventually even the smart house devices it’s developing through its acquisition of smart thermostat maker Nest.

A retail location would be the perfect space to give potential customers a chance to engage with Glass with the assistance of a Google employee. Allowing people to play with Glass and have its functions explained to them by a Google employee who knows how to use it will help convince people who may not have been willing to figure out how to use the new device format by themselves, or who maybe didn’t know about the unique ways it could be used in their daily lives, to buy Glass.

While some are still skeptical that Glass has the potential to appeal to many consumers, a retail space where people could see for themselves how Glass works would be more encouraging to customers and a better plan than hoping people will plop down the hefty sum for the device online without ever having seen how it works.

Apple’s retail stores have been shown to be a highly successful way to encourage consumers to purchase the company’s products. Potential customers are given free reign to play with floor models and talk to Apple employees about how the products can best serve their needs. Since providing such an environment has proven it works, Google would do well to copy Apple’s formula, especially since products like Glass are moving into new tech territory, where consumers feel less comfortable.

-WassupFred

Monday, March 10, 2014


Coin revealed itself to the world with a gorgeously produced video that lays out how the card will work: Swipe your credit, debit or rewards card through an attachment on your smartphone, snap a picture of the front and back, and the card's information is stored in Coin. Simple, right? Check out the Video below!



Once your cards are stored, you can use Coin's digital display to select which of them you'd like to use to pay. Merchants swipe Coin just as they would a regular card.
In short, Coin aims to solve the problem of too many cards in a fat wallet. That may not sound like a major issue to solve, but loads of people loved Coin's premise and pre-ordered the device for $50 ahead of its slated summer 2014 release (when it will cost $100).
So yes, the hottest new startup product doesn't exactly exist yet. It's a common phenomenon in the Kickstarter world we live in.
But CEO and founder Kanishk Parashar told CNNMoney that the company hit its fundraising goal of $50,000 worth of pre-orders in just 40 minutes last Thursday.
The company -- which is backed by investors including Y Combinator and K9 Ventures -- has been testing working prototypes of Coin and is "two iterations away" from being ready to manufacture, Parashar said.
Still, it's hardly clear that Coin can meet its promised launch date of next summer. As with any buzzy product that hasn't yet been released, various problems could crop up. There's already a similar "all-in-one" card called the Protean Echo that got some tech-press love in August 2012. But the Echo website still lists the product as "Coming Soon!"
But even if Coin makes it to consumers on time, here are three other hurdles it must overcome before you can cut up all your credit cards for good.
Coin won't work if your phone is dead: Yup. The current iteration of Coin "locks up" if it's away from your smartphone for more than 10 minutes ... or if your phone's battery has run out.
It's a security measure to ensure that you don't lose your card, which is a valid concern. (Your phone will even send you a notification if you do leave your Coin behind at a bar.) But having to depend on battery-guzzling smartphones in order to pay for dinner is an obvious problem.
The company is working on a way to let users re-activate Coin from the card itself, even if a phone is far away or out of juice. But that feature hasn't been worked out yet.


Credit card companies might nix it: Coin hasn't secured approval with any of the major credit card issuers and networks it hopes to work with, nor has the company gotten a sense of whether the industry would embrace it.
Parashar said Coin has had "some conversations with some credit card companies," but he wouldn't reveal whether they were major issuers or how they felt about his product.

Why hasn't Coin had more wide-ranging discussions? "We're a really small company, and these are really large banks," Parashar said. "We will talk more when Coin is further along."
But one could argue Coin won't get further along if nobody wants to partner with it.
If major credit cards see Coin as a liability or ripe for fraud -- after all, the actual issued card isn't being presented -- Coin would be sunk.
Even the mighty Google (GOOG, Fortune 500) received an industry wrist slap in August 2012, when it expanded its mobile Wallet program. Google said all major credit cards had signed on, but American Express (AXP, Fortune 500) fired back with a statement that it hadn't approved a partnership and was still learning about Google's technology.
But Parashar insisted he has "no concerns" that credit card companies won't endorse Coin. The product already encrypts credit card information, he said, and Coin is working on "two more features to curb the possibility of fraudulent activity." Visa (V, Fortune 500), MasterCard (MA, Fortune 500), AmEx and Discover (DFS, Fortune 500) either declined to comment about Coin or didn't reply to requests.
Merchants might be stumped: Coin's design is slick, but it really doesn't look like the familiar old credit cards merchants are used to accepting. No raised-up numbers. No hologram.
"When we pay with Coin in San Francisco, as part of our testing, we are always accepted gladly," Parashar said.
And while it's true that other new mobile payment solutions like Square are becoming more common with retailers, it's easy to see how merchants outside of the Bay Area tech scene might be skeptical of a credit card that doesn't look like anything they've seen before.
Yet Coin doesn't plan to reach out to merchants to facilitate a nationwide rollout.
"We don't plan to go out of our way to educate the merchant world about it, because we're focused on the consumer side," Parashar said. "And anyone who works on the merchant side is also a consumer anyway."
Coin has set lofty goals in attempting to tackle the payments industry. But it'll take more than hype to completely revamp the wallet. What are your thoughts? Would you go for this? Speak your mind.

-WassupFred


Thursday, February 27, 2014




My fav Radio host Angie Martinez sat with the Boss Rick Ross, to talk a few things, revealing so interesting facts about the album.. Tune in.. -WassupFred

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