And finally: Apple ramps up augmented reality efforts

A look at some of the tidbits and rumours of the week
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After all the fresh smartwatch and hybrid unveilings at Baselworld last week, you'd be forgiven for thinking that a quiet period would ensue.

Quite the opposite, as we uncovered the Adidas Chameleon, saw Palmer Luckey leave Facebook and finally got confirmation from Google over the Android Wear 2.0 delay.

But while there was plenty of news to chew on, a few tidbits still stand out from the past seven days. Read on to see what you may have missed.

Apple is preparing an AR device

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The love affair is well documented at this point, with CEO Tim Cook dropping hints on a regular basis about how he'd pretty much like to avoid an Apple VR headset in favour of augmented reality.

And it appears the great game is continuing, with the Financial Times reporting that the Cupertino giant is "stepping up" its augmented reality eyewear efforts, with the end goal resulting in a consumer product.

Read this: Augmented reality explained

According to the report, Apple first began building a team to explore a head-worn device more than a year ago, with increasing resources now being added to the mix.

This is all exciting rumour action, but any device isn't likely to hit the scene until 2018 at the earliest. Meanwhile, Microsoft has celebrated the Hololens' birthday by giving an insight into what could come over the next year.

T-Mobile launches connected onesie

If you thought the pioneer of smart clothing was coming in the form of Project Jacquard, you obviously didn't see T-Mobile surging in the rear view mirror with its connected onesie.

Okay, okay, despite T-Mobile's CEO John Legere describing the garment as a "quantum leap forward for wearables, for wireless networks and for fashion" and the release of the above promo, it's just another wearable tech April Fool's joke.

Still, this kind of thing is on the horizon, albeit in a markedly less luminous pink variety.

3D Digital Crown on the horizon?

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Navigating the Apple Watch isn't exactly a chore, but there's also no doubt the Digital Crown has room to grow. And if a recently granted patent uncovered by Patently Apple is anything to go by, Apple could be exploring the option of expanding the crown's functionality into the third dimension.

In some of the examples shown in the filing, the crown can be used to scroll or scale, while tilting it up, down or side to side can also help the wearer move through the device.

The application was originally drawn up back in late 2015, meaning its impossible to tell just when this could appear on an Apple Watch. With no discernible design changes between its first two iterations, though, seeing this pop up on the its third installment wouldn't be the biggest surprise.

India embraces wearables

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The wearable market appears to be booming in India, with figures from the International Data Corporation indicating 2.5 million units were shipped last year.

Gogii and Xiaomi dominated the entry-level area, with devices priced below $50 accounting for 73% of the total sales. Things also got particularly wild in the fourth quarter, with 675,000 wearables, including both smart wearables running third-party apps and more basic variants, hitting the country.

Read more

Check out the rest of the week on our dedicated news page.


Conor Allison

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Conor moved to Wareable Media Group in 2017, initially covering all the latest developments in smartwatches, fitness trackers, and VR. He made a name for himself writing about trying out translation earbuds on a first date and cycling with a wearable airbag, as well as covering the industry’s latest releases.

Following a stint as Reviews Editor at Pocket-lint, Conor returned to Wareable Media Group in 2022 as Editor-at-Large. Conor has become a wearables expert, and helps people get more from their wearable tech, via Wareable's considerable how-to-based guides. 

He has also contributed to British GQ, Wired, Metro, The Independent, and The Mirror. 


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