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YubiKey adds 2FA to your online accounts without all of the hassle

Friday, February 15th, 2019

YubiKey by YubicoIf any single topic should be a focus for 2019, it should be online security. At least once per week, if not more frequently, there are reports of a platform being hacked or data being stolen. More often than not, the data that is stolen is user credentials: username, email, and password. Because we all use so many different services, it is fairly common practice to use the same password for some, many, or all services being used. Because of that, a single breach can compromise every system that you use.

These breaches have certainly brought about the importance of 2-factor authentication, more commonly referred to as 2FA. The common way of dealing with 2FA is either by receiving a number via text or through one of the authenticator apps. The good news is that there is a better way to protect your account. The YubiKey by Yubico is a physical 2FA device that secures your accounts with biometrics. Rather than having to get a text message to a phone that you have to then type into another service, all you have to do is touch the little device and you’re done.

In addition to 2FA, the YubiKey can also be used as a primary authentication method. For example, Microsoft supports the concept of a biometric login, allowing you to not have to use your email address and password at all to log in to your Office 365 account, OneDrive, or even your email. Simply touch your finger to the YubiKey and you’re logged in.

There is a range of keys available, depending on how you are planning on using it. From a standard USB-C key to a low-profile key, and even one designed for NFC, allowing you to use it with Android, there is a YubiKey to protect your accounts.

Interview by Scott Ertz of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology.

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ThirdEye brings the power of mixed reality to a lightweight headset

Friday, February 15th, 2019

ThirdEye GenThe last couple of years have brought a lot of interest back to virtual reality and augmented reality. In the AR world, while Microsoft’s HoloLens might be the best-known brand, there are a lot of companies bringing a lot of major innovation to their own AR headsets. One such company is ThirdEye, who is bringing their second generation AR headset, the X2, to market in the near future. This headset is the smallest mixed reality headset available, weighing in at only 6 ounces (as opposed to the HoloLens, which comes in at 20 ounces, or 1.28 pounds). All of this is accomplished while not being required to be tethered to a computer or any external computing device.

The weight isn’t the only feature that sets the X2 apart from its competition. One of the biggest problems with augmented reality and mixed reality hardware is the field of vision. Essentially, that means that the hardware itself block a large portion of your peripheral vision or that the viewable area of the screen is only a very small portion of the overall viewable area. The X2 has taken this problem to task and created a 42-degree field of vision. For reference, this is the equivalent of a 90″ television in your living room.

Obviously, none of this has any value if there is no software available for the platform. To address this concern, the X2 runs on Android 8, meaning that anyone who can develop applications for Android can develop for this mixed reality headset. To aid in that endeavor, ThirdEye has the VisionEye SLAM SDK, which provides the ability to track position with six degrees of freedom, allowing for high precision.

The X2 is currently not available but can be preordered with delivery planned for later in 2019. The preorder price for the hardware is $1,950.

Interview by Scott Ertz of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology.

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Intel shows off what the future of Wi-Fi 6 means for VR and gaming

Wednesday, February 13th, 2019

Intel Wi-Fi 6If there was any single technology that we absolutely rely on in our homes, it would be Wi-Fi. We all have a lot of devices that connect to our Wi-Fi networks, with laptops, tablets, and phones being the most common. But, today we’ve got so much more dependent on our in-home networks, like smart speakers, thermostats, and more.

Even with all of these changes in the way we use Wi-Fi, the biggest complication in Wi-Fi is the addition of high-use devices, such as virtual reality and augmented reality hardware. Standalone hardware like this, which gets its video feed over the network as opposed to being plugged in directly to a computer move a tremendous amount of data over the network. By using this hardware, you can stress your network to the point where other devices, including the computer pushing the video, can experience massive lag.

Fortunately, the next generation of Wi-Fi is almost here. With the reveal of this new technology, running on the 802.11ax standard, we get a much needed new naming convention. Rather than being known by their technological standard, as they always have, the new standard will be generational. The new generation will be known as Wi-Fi 6, with 802.11n becoming Wi-Fi 4 and 802.11ac becoming Wi-Fi 5. The biggest change in Wi-Fi 6 will be a huge increase in stability when stressed.

As evidence, Intel gave us a demo of their Wi-Fi 6 prototype hardware powering a complete virtual reality setup. That included the laptop that was rendering the video and the headset that was controlling it. Having gotten to experience the VR myself, I can confirm that there was never a moment of lag. The video was smooth from start to finish, and all of the controls were responsive. Based on this experience, Wi-Fi 6 is going to be a huge improvement for VR, but also for standard gaming, streaming and more.

Intel expects PCs and routers to begin shipping with Wi-Fi 6 in the first half of 2019.

Interview by Scott Ertz of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology.

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Listen… Razer’s New Project Linda is Absolutely Amazing

Wednesday, February 28th, 2018

Razer Project LindaAnother CES booth where we are never disappointed is Razer’s. Not only do we love their products in general, but their prototype projects are always kick ass! This year was no exception. We got an up close look at Project Linda. This concept is an ultraportable laptop design powered by the Android-based Razer Phone. When the phone is docked it serves as an intelligent touchpad right in front. This bridges the gap between having handheld entertainment and a laptop together. The best parts of the Razer Phone (performance, display, and dual front-firing speakers) are seamlessly combined with the larger screen and keyboard of Project Linda’s, as well as the battery. This provides the ultimate mobile hybrid setup for gaming, creativity and productivity.

Specs include a 13.3″ Quad HD touchscreen that extends the 120Hz experience available on the Razer Phone to the larger screen and provides fluid motion and vibrant visuals. The 13.3″ touch display of the laptop is ideal for gaming, entertainment and creativity, or for multiple apps to run side by side. The 5.7″ touchscreen of the Razer Phone is multifunction as both a touchpad, or as an interactive second touch display that allows for custom interfaces or additional apps. The built-in keyboard is backlit and powered by Razer Chroma which is perfect for both short texts and lengthy assignments. It is also equipped with custom Android keys for easy navigation, app selection, searching and more. There is also a Sentio Desktop interface that adds to the laptop experience and provides a familiar layout and the keyboard shortcuts that you are accustom to.

And talk about gaming; this setup will blow you away. You will enjoy your Android games in all new ways with Project Linda. This honey of a system lets you connect a mouse for precise control and also trigger actions quickly on the keyboard. The second display offers easy access to take advantage of things like menus, maps, and a lot more while still within a game. Plus, the built-in power bank allows you to quickly charges the Razer Phone while it’s docked. And there is 200GB of internal storage, so you can house your local apps, games, media, and offline phone backups all right there.

We look forward to watching the development of this exciting prototype. While Project Linda is a work-in-progress, you can get the Razer Phone from Razer or Amazon now.

Interview by Allante Sparks of PLuGHiTz Live Special Events.
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Brydge Has The Most Amazing Keyboard for Your Tablet

Tuesday, February 20th, 2018

Brydge Bluetooth keyboardBrydge makes a unique range of keyboards and accessories for Apple’s iPad and the Microsoft Surface Pro. They pride themselves on being the ultimate tablet companion. All of their keyboards are designed to change the way you use your tablet. Both the iPad and the Surface are high quality, high capability tablets. Sure, you can run simple apps and play games on them like their cheaper competitors, but they are designed to do so much more. There’s no need to lug around a heavy laptop when you can do all of your mobile computing, and then some, right on your tablet. And let’s be honest, when you spend good money on a nice quality device, you really don’t want a cheap, plastic keyboard paired with it.

Brydge Keyboards are designed from scratch to basically be the other half of your tablet. They are made of 100% aluminum with 160° to 190° viewing angles, they are versatile with a patent pending hinge that allows the tablet to stand upright without a kickstand. They are lightweight, Bluetooth-enabled and have battery lives from 3 to 12 months, depending upon the model and usage.

The Brydge 12.9 for the iPad Pro and Brydge 10.5 for the iPad Pro truly brings a MacBook-like experience to the user, making it the perfect balance between tablet and laptop. A full keyboard, with 3-level backlit keys, and the top row of dedicated iOS special function keys, features that comes in very handy when you need them the most. The typing experience is unparalleled with real tactile typing for the feel, sound and response you expect. Truly a laptop experience, with the versatility of an iPad.

The Brydge 12.3 for the Microsoft Surface Pro also delivers an unmatched laptop-like experience. The integrated glass touchpad allows maximum accuracy with minimal effort. Multiple finger inputs and multitouch gestures are simply a breeze. Everything you do on it feels natural and intuitive. It is also available with an integrated High-Speed SSD card (up to 600mb/s). The Brydge 12.3 Pro 128 and Pro 256 models offer the power user that little bit extra. If you have immediate storage needs or just want extra capacity at a later time, the Pro modes offer the flexibility of an external hard drive without the inconvenience. And if you don’t foresee storage issues, the standard Brydge 12.3 is a perfect option.

Most importantly, you don’t have to worry about breaking the bank. Prices start at an affordable $129. You can get more information about these keyboards, as well as their entire line of portable batteries and accessories by visiting their website. You can also buy the products now on Amazon.

Interview by Daniele Mendez of The New Product Launchpad.
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Keeping Your Data The Most Secure

Saturday, February 17th, 2018

SecureDrive Secure External StorageSecure Data is having the world premier of their Secure Drive product line. These drives are designed to be the most secure external drives available. The line includes secure USB flash drives, as well as secure external hard driver, ranging in size from 1TB to 5TB of storage.

The hardware encrypted device is completely OS independent, so, all the encryption and decryption processes are done inside the device. This means that there’s absolutely no user input that can be sniffed out on the operating system. This is the worlds first patent pending Bluetooth authentication method. Users download the mobile app (Apple App Store or Google Play Store), then create a 7-15 digit key. Once the device is paired up and the key has been added, the drive is then opened and you can transport data to and from the device. This encryption is designed to pass the FIPS 140-2 level 3 physical hardware encryption. Once they have acquired that certification, the drive is the most secure drive that is on the market.

Remote management options will be available on the Bluetooth series of devices. This means you can manage the device remotely. You will be able to reset, unlock or control the geofencing of the device. Therefore it won’t use the IP address to verify the location, but the mobile device’s properties only, and is precise up to 5 feet. You will be able to lock it to a specific location or set it to a specific dates. Also, if you lose control of the device or the data for whatever reason, it can be instantly erased using the crypto-erase command.

Prices start at $229.00 for the 1 TB device to $499.00 for the 5TB devices. Take a look at all of the products and services they offer by visiting their website.

Interview by Daniele Mendez of The New Product Launchpad.
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Flexible and Healthy with Increased Mobility in the Office

Saturday, February 17th, 2018

FlexiSpot Adjustable DeskAfter getting more information and a working demo of the FlexiSpot Deskcise Pro V9, we ventured further into their booth to see more of their products. Lehong Xiang was very excited to show us how their entire line works together to provide a comprehensive package for your office space.

At Loctek, they take great pride in designing, and bringing to life ergonomic solutions that help people lead a healthier and more productive life. Their innovative Research & Development team is comprised of forward-thinking engineers who combine their ideas with the latest technology and create viable products that make productivity healthier in the all work settings.

Featured here is the arrow shaped adjustable desk. It’s smart features allow users to program in specific height settings, as well as adjust the height at any time. Adjustments are made easily with the touch pad located on the left front of the desk. Add on a dual monitor mounting system for optimum screen views at any height. You can use an ergonomic desk chair and/or one of their stand alone desk bikes, as well. This configuration allows the perfect combination of sitting, standing and pedaling for optimum health benefits.

The arrow shaped smart adjustable desk will be available soon on their website, where you can also find multiple monitor mounting systems and desk bikes. All items are prices separately to allow you to purchase all or any portion thereof. You can also add on to your system at any time.

Also, take a look at the following innovative Loctek products that are available on Amazon.

Loctek Upright Foldable Desk Bike
Loctek Monitor Arm Dual Monitor Mounts
Loctek D7DP Swivel Dual LCD Arm Desk Laptop Mount Monitor Stand

Interview by Daniele Mendez of The New Product Launchpad.
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The Hologram School of the Future is Here!

Tuesday, February 13th, 2018

HoloAnatomy HoloLens SoftwareCase Western Reserve University has been working with Microsoft HoloLens and the Cleveland Clinic to create the first software for HoloLens to be used in the medical field. The school has been developing this software to be used in their new facility that will house the medical, dental and nursing schools.

The software is called HoloAnatomy and helps teach students without the need to use cadavers and plain 2D textbooks. This application teaches in a 3D hologram style of environment. You will actually be able to walk around the image and even be able to stick your head and hands into the holographic body. Sister software is also being used to view artwork and museums of the world. You can try out this groundbreaking software for free for the HoloLens in the Microsoft Store.

Interview by Allante Sparks of PLuGHiTz Live Special Events.
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High Tech Workflow Solutions with OWC

Friday, February 2nd, 2018

OWC Other World ComputingOh what fun it is to see what’s new at OWC, especially for us here at PLuGHiTz Live.

This year they are showcasing the new version of their Thunderbolt 3 Dock, which was previously mainly for Mac. They have now added the Windows platform and lowered the price. The ports included on this new model: (2) Thunderbolt 3 USB Type-C ports (downstream port can support USB 3.1 Gen 2 devices), (1) Mini DisplayPort, (4) USB 3.1 Gen 1 Standard-A ports (rear) – 1 compliant with Battery Charging 1.2 spec, (1) USB 3.1 Gen 1 Standard-A port (front) – compliant with Battery Charging 1.2 spec, (1) Gigabit Ethernet port, (1) S/PDIF digital audio port (output only), (1) SD 3.0 media card reader (front), (1) Hybrid 3.5 mm headphone/mic jack. This new model will be available in February/March of 2018 at a price of $279.

OWC has always been a storage company that is focused on any kind of media production. As more and more content is created, we not only need extended storage but also better transfer speeds. This next upgraded device will make life for us media professionals so much better. The Thunderblade V4 is a solid state, ray to ray, all flash storage (PCIE, MVME), passively cooled untie with no light in a flat black finish that is portable and fast. How fast? It has an almost 3 gig/second read with 2.5 sustained writes. When time is money and performance can’t be beat… this new unit is as good as gold in our book. All this and it is durably designed to be out on the road where the content is being created. It is available immediately post CES 2018. From 1TB to 8 TB with pricing between $1,600 and $4,999, it will honestly pay for itself in production time very quickly.

Take a look at all of OWC’s products, available at Amazon.com.

Interview by Scott Ertz of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology.
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Fascinate Your Customers by Introducing them to Awesome VR

Tuesday, June 13th, 2017

MorfusThe world of tech is enhancing our lives on a daily basis. Businesses are able to attract customers in new ways, while at the same time making it easier for them to browse through and purchase their products. And now, the design and architecture industries are also able to jump on the tech bandwagon to attract and amaze their clients.

Morfus is an enterprise solution VR company for interior designers and architects. They transform 3D models and 2D floor plans into a VR showcase for mobile phones. Bringing this technology to existing phones makes it available to many more firms, as well as their clients, as they will not have to invest in expensive hardware in order to view the designs. Once rendered, they can be viewed on any smart phone. Also, each project generates its own unique mobile app, so the firm’s customers can download the apps on their own devices as well.

It opens up so many possibilities as clients will be able to virtually walk through the designs. This provides a much better sense of the space available with heights and dimension, the ability to go from room to room, even see the landscaping and views. They bring the plans to life so much more than a model or 360˚ photo. They also make is simple to use. Although they are compatible with Google Cardboard, they also have their own system for moving around the showcase that will work with any Bluetooth controller for Android or iOS.

As the company expands, they are looking forward to introducing their own design apps for interior decorating that include allowing users to create their own rooms and incorporating furniture and other home goods stores in the process. So you’ll be able to drag and drop actual pieces into the design and purchase the items right from the app.

To learn more, check out their website for demos and contact information.

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