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IDC: Wearables Market Gains Momentum

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According to IDC the global wearable device market is already expanding beyond early adopter status, with 2014 shipments set to grow by 300% from 2013 to 19 million units before swelling to 119m  units in 2018 with a CAGR of 78.4%.

WearableComplex accessories such as the Nike+ FuelBand, Jawbone UP and Fitbit will lead the market through 2018, thanks to ease of use and low prices. "Complex accessories have succeeded in drawing much-needed interest and attention to a wearables market that has had some difficulty gaining traction," the analyst says. "The increased buzz has prompted more vendors to announce their intentions to enter this market."

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Google Glass Gets Sale, Updates

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For a limited time the curious can get a Google Glass unit without need for referral or signing up to waiting lists-- on 15 April 2014 Google opens the honour of joining the exclusive "Explorer Program" as part of a promotion effort.

GlassholeThe program is still limited, mind, since it is only open for US residents sale will only be available for a day or so. It costs $1500, and Google will throw in either a sunglass shade or a pair of prescription glasses frames.

The promotion comes with a "significant" Glass software update. The headset now runs on Android KitKat for enhanced reliability and battery life, users can post photos in Google Hangouts replies and voice commands get sorted according to recency and frequency.

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The Smallest Laptop Adapter Yet?

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MIT spin-off FINsix reveals the latest version of a miniature power adapter it describes as "a perfect complement to today's thin, lightweight, portable laptops"-- the Dart, supposedly the smallest and lightest power adapter around.

DartFirst seen in unnamed form back at CES 2014, the Dart weighs all of 60g and is much smaller than regular power bricks. It uses very high freqency (VHF) power conversion, a patented MIT technology promising power cycles up to 1000x faster with the same energy loss of regular adapters, thus allowing the considerable duction in size.

FINsix also claims the Dart runs cool, unlike some power bricks doubling as space heaters or hot plates.

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The Highest Resolution 5.7-inch AMOLED

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AU Optronics develops what it claims is the highest resolution 5.7-inch AMOLED display around-- a WQHD (aka quad HD) panel able to handle resolutions as high as 2560x1440 at pixel densities of 513ppi.

display Prototypes of similar displays have been seen from LG Display and Japan Display, but AUO is the first to manage such resolutions within an AMOLED panel. The technology superior images and sharper colours, as well as reduced energy consumptions.

AUO says the panel is also just 0.57mm thick, and uses in-cell touch technology for superior sensitivity with support for up to 10 touch points.

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A Smart Scale for Smart Nutrition

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Ex-Apple employee turned technology journalist Michael Grothaus proposes a tablet-powered means for customers wanting to easily keep closer track of their nutrition-- the SITU Bluetooth food scale.

SITU The SITU shows the weight and  nutritional value of food the user plans to eat. It connects to iPads or Android tablets via Bluetooth, and a companion app calculates the nutrition value of the food in question, from calories to salt, sugars, vitamins and minerals. In other words, it promises to eliminate the need for calorie counting tables and the like.

The easy to use app even keeps track of entire meals, and provides a user history complete with nutrient limit alerts and data exporting options.

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