News

Microsoft HoloLens VR headset starts shipping today

Published

on

Microsoft kicked off its HoloLens virtual-reality project into high gear with the announcement that HoloLens dev kits will start shipping to developers today with a price tag of $US3,000 (Php138,000).

They’re releasing it, along with all the tools needed to help developers incorporate everything HoloLens has to offer, including hand-and-eye gestures — two features other consumer VR headsets are currently lacking.


One of the first apps HoloLens has on offer, unsurprisingly, comes from Microsoft and is called Galaxy Explorer.

With it, you can experience the vastness and emptiness of space within your own living room. The app itself is unspectacular (VR already has a version of it called Titans of Space, sans the interaction), but the great thing about it is that Microsoft has made the Galaxy Explorer code available online via GitHub, a collaboration website.

Microsoft HoloLens 2016

HoloLens headset

As a developer myself, having access to a project’s source code is priceless, especially when it comes to emerging trends like VR.

Thinking about the possibilities of interactive virtual reality is enough to make most tech enthusiasts giddy. It’s the stuff of sci-fi movies, after all.

[irp posts=”8643" name=”Microsoft is bringing the feature we’ve always wanted to Windows”]

In the case of Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, HoloLens will be a huge help to medical students under the university’s holographic anatomy program. At the very least, dissecting cadavers to gain insights into the human anatomy should be the last of their worries.

NASA has also developed a HoloLens app that will allow the public (yes, the public) to take a virtual walk on Mars’ surface alongside former U.S. astronaut and space hero Buzz Aldrin. The program will be made available sometime in the summer of 2016 at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex in Florida.

Judging from some of Microsoft’s keynote videos shown at the Build 2016 developer conference, it seems Microsoft’s immediate focus is to create enterprise opportunities for HoloLens by showing car makers and home-improvement chains and the like the possible applications of the technology in the business world.

In a few years, virtual reality and holograms will become a huge part of human work — from designing and building cars (and parts) to prepping for surgeries. And Microsoft’s HoloLens may be a huge leap forward towards that future.

To me, the end goal for VR should be similar to Tony Stark’s use in Iron Man 2

Enterprise

Philippines: Huawei ban ‘will have a little impact’ on the country

States the Philippines’ robust cybersecurity measures

Published

on

Throughout the past few days, the Huawei debacle has devastated companies and consumers across the globe. Everyone is falling for the fear. Huawei’s long-standing suppliers have cut ties with the company. Huawei’s consumers are getting rid of their favored headsets. The wave has swept the whole world.

Naturally, the Philippines isn’t immune. Recently, smartphone retailers and resellers have started refusing Huawei devices from their stores. Local Huawei users can’t easily sell their devices to the second-hand market anymore.


However, an important question still stands. How much will the Huawei ban affect the Philippines?

Of course, the ban originates from Trump’s trade war against China. Among other reasons, the American government cites the company’s inherent cybersecurity risks as the prime motivator. Supposedly, Huawei’s telecommunications hardware can transmit valuable data to the Chinese government. Given the Philippines’ proximity to China, are we also at risk?

According to the Department of Information and Communications Technology, Huawei’s ban “will have a little impact in the Philippine telecommunications industry.” Shared through a Facebook post, the DICT assures users of the country’s robust cybersecurity measures. As of now, the department has not reported any cybersecurity breaches coming from Huawei equipment.

Likewise, shortly after the news broke, local telcos confirmed continued support for Huawei’s devices. According to the DICT, “they will diversify in their present and future procurements of equipment to make their networks more robust and future proof.” The department is also imposing strict rules on local telcos regarding network monitoring. The statement also quickly adds the imposition of the same rules on a potential third telco.

Is the DICT’s statement believable? For now, Huawei’s impact is still marginal at best. Companies and consumers are going on the perceived risk of the future. Right now, Huawei has not announced drastic changes to its products yet. Existing Huawei products still support Google.

Of course, cybersecurity is another issue. The risk will always exist when foreign companies control the telecommunications equipment of another country. At the very least, the DICT isn’t treating the whole debacle as a non-issue. Hopefully, the department’s promises are an optimistic sign for the country’s telecommunications industry.

SEE ALSO: Huawei granted 90-day extension before total ban

Continue Reading

News

IGTV adds support for horizontal video

No longer exclusive to vertical content

Published

on

When Instagram’s IGTV platform first launched, it was special for its focus on vertically oriented videos. The reasoning here is that this is how people naturally hold their smartphones, and vertical video recording has become a standard.

Unfortunately, IGTV didn’t exactly fly from the get-go. Even after certain adjustments, such as integrating its system into Instagram itself for better exposure, content creators and casual users couldn’t fully embrace the platform.


In yet another move — possibly the most drastic yet — IGTV will now support landscape videos. This comes as a response to both creators and viewers who want to upload and watch videos in “a more natural way.”

“Ultimately, our vision is to make IGTV a destination for great content no matter how it’s shot so creators can express themselves how they want,” wrote Instagram on its blog.

The blog reminds us that a similar change happened to Instagram in 2015, when you could start uploading photos in non-square formats. IGTV hopes that this transformation will have the same positive effect.

Continue Reading

News

OPPO K3 introduces pop-up camera to budget segment

Includes midrange specs and fast charging

Published

on

It’s looking like pop-up cameras are here to stay. After making a splash last year, more and more smartphones have been using this implementation for notch-less displays.

The latest to join the trend is the OPPO K3, a budget smartphone with midrange specifications. Not only does it have a 16-megapixel camera that elevates from the top, it also owns a fast Snapdragon 710 chipset and a 6.5-inch OLED panel with an under-display fingerprint scanner.


That’s fantastic for a phone that retails at CNY 1,599 (US$ 230) for the 6GB+64GB model and CNY 1,899 (US$ 274) for the 8GB+128GB variant.

And the generous features don’t end there. The OPPO K3 also comes with VOOC 3.0 fast charging, a hefty 3765mAh battery, and a 16- plus 2-megapixel dual-camera setup on the back.

The only downsides are the micro-USB port instead of the more preferable USB-C, and the ColorOS 6 skin on top of Android 9 Pie, which purists may say isn’t as feature-packed as other Android skins.

The OPPO K3 is already available in China. International availability, as always, will happen at a later date if we’re lucky.

Continue Reading

Trending