Mobile World Congress is in full swing in Barcelona, and the news keeps on flowing. On Tuesday, our crew got to see Microsoft’s newest Lumia, fitness bands from Garmin and a safer future in the workplace.
As always, check out everything from MWC 2016 on CNET.
Project Tango could come to a museum near you
Google’s spatial mapping technology Project Tango can scan indoor areas to understand where you are and how objects fit inside the space. Companies are using Project Tango to build apps, like one by GuidiGO, with real-world uses. GuidiGO’s app can take you on a tour of a museum, and knows when you’ve reached a work of art so it can tell you more about it. It can even display a walking path on the screen to show you where to go.
Make that public Wi-Fi network safer
Paranoid that someone will hack into your computer or Internet activity when you’re on a public Wi-Fi network? You’ll need Keezel, a small puck that secures any open Wi-Fi connection to protect your computer and your information. It got its start on Indiegogo and is now available for $100.
Microsoft’s low-end Lumia looks anything but
The Lumia 650 is missing some key features of Microsoft’s premium Lumia 950, but it still manages to look nicer than it. Its metal frame gives it style and stability, and yet it still has a removable plastic battery cover so you can add extra storage space. This is a budget-minded Windows 10 phone, coming in at just $200 (£160, around AU$280).
A new waterproof phone from Sony
Sony’s Xperia X Performance is the high-end phone in the Xperia X line and it has the specs to prove it. It’s got a Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor, 3GB of RAM, a 23-megapixel rear camera and best of all, a waterproof design. No word yet on pricing, but it’s expected to come to the US.
Garmin’s long-lasting fitness bands
Two new fitness trackers from Garmin popped up at MWC. The Vivoactive HR is a upgrade of the Garmin Vivoactive with a completely new design and a built-in heart rate sensor. It promises to last up to eight days on a single charge and will cost $250/AU$399 when it goes on sale.
Meanwhile, the smaller Garmin Vivofit 3 looks a bit like a fashion accessory and automatically detects when you’re working out. It’s water-resistant and the battery lasts for an entire year.
Smarter than your average trash can
Forget about smart washing machines or coffee makers. This Internet-connected trashcan will tell you when it’s full. They may soon show up in a park near you to tell city workers when to empty them before they overflow.
The trash can was designed by network company Sigfox, which is working on other smart sensors that will detect beer temperatures at a bar, tell you when a beehive is full of honey and if a fire hydrant has adequate water pressure.
Fujitsu is making workplaces safer
Power plants, factories and warehouses can be dangerous places to work, but Fujitsu is trying to make them safer with an augmented-reality headset, a neckband that measures drowsiness and a connected van.
The headset clips onto a hard hat and show workers which parts of a malfunctioning machine need to be fixed. Supervisors can keep track of the van and tell drivers where to go on appointments or direct them to avoid unsafe areas. Finally, the neckband knows when you’ve spent too many hours behind the wheel and need to take a break.
ExtrasChinese smartphone maker Oppo developed a way to charge a phone from dead to full in just 15 mins.With the help of Project Tango, Fiat built an app that lets you get a 360-degree inside and out tour of the Fiat 500. Unfortunately, you’ll still have to go to a dealership to test drive it.
Check out all of the news from Mobile World Congress on CNET.