External batteries are often seen as a necessary burden, given their unwieldy size and the awkwardness of having your phone plugged in and tied down while simultaneously trying to use it with any semblance of normalcy. Cue the XOO Belt by Nifty, a true example of invisible design which combines minimalist aesthetics with the latest innovations in flexible battery technology to produce a belt that packs 2,100mAh of juice into its length, as well as an additional 800mAh in the buckle. Chargeable via USB, the premium tanned leather belt incorporates a magnetic cable that snaps away when not in use, two charging ports, as well as a ratchet system that allows adjustments of a quarter of an inch. Having already raised $30,000 of its $50,000 USD goal, head over to the product’s Indiegogo page before early bird supplies run out.
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YouTube has announced YouTube Music Key, a new premium music streaming service that will give users the ability to watch videos and listen to music without ads, whether online or off. In the announcement, YouTube claims its users have made it the biggest music service on the planet, saying that if a song exists, it can probably be found on YouTube. YouTube Music Key is launching in beta with invites to YouTube’s “biggest music fans,” offering them six months of the service for free.
When the service becomes available to the public, it will be at an introductory price of $7.99 per month, which YouTube says is discounted from $9.99. Users interested in learning more can sign up for email alerts for updates about YouTube Music Key.
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Amazon has officially introduced their latest innovation, Echo. A gadget that combines the qualities of a speaker with a Siri-like assistant, Echo is designed around the user’s voice and utilizes far-field voice recognition in order to hear you from any direction. It can answer questions, play music, relay news information as well as the weather, and much more. Echo is always on and connected to WiFi so it’s ready to respond instantly. Also, Echo’s dual downward-firing speakers produce 360° omnidirectional audio that can fill a room with high quality sound. Plus, Echo is Bluetooth-enabled so you can stream your favorite music services like Spotify, iTunes, and Pandora from your phone or tablet. With enhanced noise cancellation, it can hear you ask a question even while it’s playing music. Amazon’s Echo is now available through an invitation-only service for $199 USD, while Amazon Prime members will only be required to pay $99 USD. To better understand exactly what Echo is capable of above watch the video below.
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Employing a team of engineers and nautical enthusiasts, tech development company Quadrofoil has designed and manufactured the world’s first fully electric and completely environmentally friendly personal watercraft. The watercraft is operated by battery, while being propelled by curved blades underneath the surface, allowing for enhanced buoyancy that lifts the vessel above the surface and allows it to travel with minimum water resistance at up to 20 knots. The vehicle also clocks in at an expense of 1€ per hour, with hardly any maintenance costs to consider. The steering wheel incorporates a simple touchscreen display, informing the driver about battery, range, speed and consumption statistics; the wheel itself doubles as the key, so when you’re finished jetting along, take the wheel with you and no one but you can start the engine. What’s more, owners will enjoy the ability to ride on lakes, rivers, seas & eco-zones where some motorized vessels are not allowed, due to the silent motor and zero emissions. Visit the Quadrofoil website for additional details.
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Since Tim Cook’s announcement of the Apple Watch last month, the tech company has remained hush about a specific release date outside of Cook’s “early 2015″ tease. Recent news development suggests that eager fans will have to wait a little longer before they can get their hands on one.
Tech site 9to5mac recently obtained a transcript of a video from an unamed source, in which Apple’s Senior Vice President of Retail and Online stores Angela Ahrendts revealed a spring 2015 launch in her address to company employees. While the new timeline is just as vague as the old one, it would put us somewhere between March and June to see the much-anticipated smartwatch hit stores. Hopefully Apple will come out with an official statement soon, so stay tuned and check back for more updates.