Pebble Time is the Color Version of the Pebble SmartWatch (Crowdfunding)

The original Pebble Watch launched on Kickstarter about 3 years ago, and after selling over 1 million watches, the company is back on Kickstarter with Pebble Time, a thinner version of the watch with an always-on color e-Paper display, a new “timeline” user interface, a microphone for voice recognition,  and 7 days of battery life. The complete Pebble Time specifications are not available, but the company still listed some key features: MCU – Cortex M4 Always-on, daylight readable 64 colors e-Paper display with backlight (no touchscreen) Six-axis gyrosope Microphone for dictation 3x tactile buttons Bluetooth for connectivity with mobile devices Up to 7 day battery life Compatible with any standard 22mm watch band Water resistant and durable Silent vibrating alarms Language and international character support (Chinese coming soon) The new Timeline interface focuses on past, present and future events such as basketball score, current steps, and weather forecast, and the […]

Review of Zidoo X9 Android Media Player and Video Recorder

Zidoo X9 is quite a unique product on the market, as it’s the only low cost Android platform that I know of that features an HDMI input port with recording capabilities. The hardware is actually based on Kaiboer F5, with some modifications, but the latter focuses on the Chinese market, while Zidoo X9 targets oversea markets with an English firmware by default. I took pictures of Zidoo X9 and its board about a month ago, but a busy schedule and some initial issues with Google Play Store delayed the review. Finally, I’ve completed testing of the device, and ready to share my findings about performance, stability, and features in this review. OTA Firmware Update I’ve had to go through two firmware updates before carrying on with the review, and this part is working great, and they even include a detailed changelog with each release, which they also publish on their […]

Ingenic Halley is a $20 Linux based IoT Board with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.1 Connectivity

Ingenic introduced Newton2 platform for wearables a few months ago, and the kit with an AMOLED display, camera board and other accessories should go on sale in March for $80. In the meantime, the company has also been working on a lower cost internet of things (IoT) module and development kit powered by Ingenic M150 with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.1 targeting smart appliances, Wi-Fi speakers, smart toys, industrial control applications, and other smart devices. Halley IoT module specifications: SoC – Ingenic M150 XBurst (MIPS) single-core processor up to 1.0GHz with 128MB LPDDR on-chip, 2D graphics GPU, VPU supporintg 720p30 H.264 video decoding. Storage – 8MP SPI NOR flash (GIGA GD25LQ64) Connectivity – Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n and  Bluetooth 4.1 via Broadcom 43438 chip. Expansion headers (2mm pitch) 8-bit parallel LCD interface, Audio – MIC, Line-In and headphone, 2x I2S, SD card (MMC interface) USB device 2.0, and USB host 1.1 3x […]

Variscite Introduces TI Sitara AM437x SoM with Bluetooth and Wi-Fi

News about Texas Instruments Sitara AM437x processors first surfaced in 2012, before being officially announced last summer. Beside TI’s own development kits, I had not seen any hardware based on the company’s Cortex A9 industrial processor, but Variscite has now unveiled their VAR-SOM-AM43 systems-on-module (SoM) powered by AM4376 , AM4378, or AM4379 SoCs. VAR-SOM-AM43 specifications: SoC – Texas Instruments AM437x single core ARM Cortex A9 processor @ 1.0GHz: AM4376 – No GPU, 4x PRU @ 200 MHz AM4378 – PowerVR SGX530 GPU, 4x PRU @ 200 MHz AM4379 – PowerVR SGX530 GPU, 4x PRU @ 200 MHz, and EtherCAT slave support System Memory – 256MB to 1GB DDR3 Storage – 0 to 512MB SLC NAND flash, and 4GB to 32GB eMMC flash b module. 3x SD/MMC via edge connector Display Interfaces – 24-bit RGB interface up to 1400×1050 resolution; 4/5-wire resistive touch support Connectivity  – 10/100/1000 Mbps Ethernet PHY + […]

Atmel Introduces Wi-Fi / Bluetooth Combo SoCs for the Internet of Things

Atmel has recently announced two SoCs supporting Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0 that target M2M and IoT applications, namely WILC3000 wireless link controller and WINC3400 network controller which both integrate a power amplifier, LNA, switch and power management unit. WILC3000 and WINC3400 should share the following specifications: MCU – Cortus APS3 32-bit processor ROM/Flash – 256KB instruction/boot ROM (160KB for 802.11 and 96KB for Bluetooth) along with a 768 bits of non-volatile eFuse memory RAM – 420KB instruction RAM (128KB for 802.11 and 292KB for Bluetooth), and a 128KB data RAM (64KB for 802.11 and 64KB for Bluetooth), as well as 160KB shared/exchange RAM (128KB for 802.11 and 32 KB for Bluetooth) Wi-Fi IEEE 802.11 b/g/n RF/PHY/MAC SOC (2.4 GHz) IEEE 802.11 b/g/n (1×1) for up to 72 Mbps Wi-Fi Direct and Soft-AP support Supports IEEE 802.11 WEP, WPA, WPA2 Security, China WAPI security Bluetooth Version 4.0 Low Energy Class 1 […]

Review of CX-S806 TV Box Powered by Amlogic S812 Processor

I’ve already reviewed one Android media player based on Amlogic S812 processor with MINIX NEO X8-H Plus. Today, I’m going to have a look at another S812 TV box, namely CX-S806, with lower specs, and less support, but that sells for half price compared to the MINIX device. I’ve already published pictures of CX-S806 media player and board, so today I’ll focus on testing the performance and features of the device. First Boot, Settings and First Impressions The package include a simple IR remote control, so I inserted two AAA batteries to give it a try, and it seemed to work OK, but as usual I switched to use Mele F10 Deluxe air mouse for the rest of the review. Since I’ve connected Ethernet and HDMI cables, a USB hard drive, a USB webcam, and a USB hub with two RF dongles for the air mouse and wireless gamepad, and […]

WeTek Play Review with Android 4.2.2 Firmware v1.1.1

I had already reviewed WeTek Play Android DVB-S2 STB this summer, but at the time it was still an early sample, so the company asked me to review it again with the latest firmware that includes bug fixes and new features such as WeCloud Antenna IPTV service with over 180 Live TV channels, now that they’ve officially launched WeTek Play with either a DVB-S2 tuner as in my sample, a DVB-T/T2/C tuner, or no tuner at all. You can find pictures of WeTek Play in my unboxing post. As usual the review will include my first impressions, video testing, and various benchmark, but I’ll also have sections for WeCloud Antenna Live TV over IP service, and WeTek Theater for live TV from my satellite dish. OTA Firmware Update But first of all, I’ll test OTA firmware update, as many companies claim to support OTA updates, but you often end up […]

Infocus CS1 A83 (C2107) Android Tablet Review

I’ve already shown some pictures, listed specs and reported Antutu benchmark results for Infocus CS1 A83 Android tablet powered by Allwinner A83T octa core processor. I’ve been using this tablet as my main mobile device for about a week, and for about 3 to 5 hours a day, and I’m now ready to write a full review reporting my experience with this Full HD tablet. General Impressions I mainly use a tablet to browse the web, check emails, play some casual games like Candy Crush Saga, watch some YouTube videos, and Skype calls, and I could not really fault the tablet for any of these applications. Having said that, my reference device is only ThL W200 smartphone powered by Mediatek MT6589T processor with a 5″ display @ 1280×720, and for all the tasks listed Infocus tablet is much better because it’s more responsive, the 1920×1200 is crisp, and the cameras […]