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CES Heads to Asia

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The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) announces an Asian event-- International CES Asia, with an inaugural 2015 edition to take place on 25-27 May in Shanghai, China.

CES AsiaThe event is expected to draw business from all over the world showcasing products and technologies entering the Asian market. It will be held at the Shanghai New International Expo Centre (SNIEC) in cooperation with Chinese tradeshow producer Intex Shanghai.

It is also the first CES-sponsored tradeshow in China since SINOCES in 2012.

“China is a critical driver of the global tech industry with an incredible opportunity to accelerate its innovation output," CEA CEO Gary Shapiro says. "At CES Asia, attendees will experience the innovation that defines the CE industry, with exclusive access to some of the top brands from China and around the world.”

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Raspberry Pi Gets Major Upgrade

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The Raspberry Pi Foundation announces an upgrade to the low-cost credit card-sized micro PC-- the Raspberry Pi Model B+, featuring a 40-pin general-purpose input/output (GPIO) allowing for further expansion.

Raspberry Pi B+The first Raspberry Pi features a 26-pin GPIO. The first 26 pins on the Model B+ are identical to the original, allowing for backwards compatibility.

Further enhancements on the Model B+ include 4 USB 2.0 ports (the original features 2), better hotplug and overcorrect behaviour, a "nicer" push-push microSD card socket and switching regulators promising to reduce power consumptions to 600mA.

Also improved are the audio (via dedicated low-noise power supply) and the overall form factor with the addition of 4 squarely-placed mounting holes and the movement of composite video onto the 3.5mm jack.

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A Thread to Tie Smart Home Devices

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Nest, Samsung, ARM, Big Ass Fans, Freescale, Silicon Labs and Yale team up in the name of the internet of things (IoT) to present Thread, an IP-based wireless networking protocol to connect smart home devices without need for hub hardware.

NestAccording to the Thread Group current 802.15.4-based networking technologies such as ZigBee or Z-Wave have "critical issues" making them unsuitable for the IoT, including lack of interoperability, inability to carry IPv6 communications, high power requirements and "hub and spoke" models dependent on one device. Thread promises to solve such issues, being a low-power wireless mesh network able to simultaneously connect and provide internet/cloud access to over 250 devices.

"A number of networking solutions and platforms have been introduced to address the growing demand for connected products in the home," IHS Technology says. "Built on well-proven standards, including IEEE 802.15.4, IETF IPv6 and 6LoWPAN, Thread represents a resilient, IP-based solution for the rapidly growing Internet of Things."

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LG Shows Off Flexible, Transparent OLEDs

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LG Display claims it has "fundamental technologies" to lead the market to large flexible and transparent displays with a pair of 18-inch OLED panels, one flexible and rollable while the other is transparent.

LG Transparent The flexible OLED panel features 1200 x 810 resolution with a 30R curvature radius. Made using a "high molecular substance-based polyimide film" backplane to achieve both flexibility and thinness, one can roll the display to a radius of 3cm without affecting its functionality.

LG claims the future will see it scale the technology to over 50-inch in size.

Meanwhile the transparent OLED panel boasts 30% transmittance, achieved using transparent pixel design technology, achieved by lowering the haze generated in the use of circuit devices and film components to 2%.

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BBC: Nvidia Preps PC Game Streamer

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The BBC reports Nvidia is set to challenge Valve's upcoming Steam Machines with a "a new gaming device" able to stream games from high-end Nvidia-powered PCs to TVs using GameStream technology.

Shield Reportedly the unnamed device also runs Android games natively via Tegra K1 chipset. Recently shown off at the Google I/O 2014 with an Unreal Engine 4 demo, the Tegra K1 features an ARM-based CPU and a 192-core GPU.

Also mentioned is a "budget-priced separate controller," making one wonder if the device is either a regular STB-style console or a tablet.

The first Nvidia take on game consoles, the Project Shield, already features GameStream allowing gamers to stream games from PCs carrying compatible Nvidia GPUs. However the bulky handheld device failed to set the world on fire like its makers' hoped it would.

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