Accessories

Sennheiser AMBEO Smart Headset First Look

It ‘hears’ audio in 3D — just like how our ears work

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Sennheiser has once again proven its authority when it comes to audio equipment.

The German company recently launched its inaugural Sound Forum in the Philippines following Indonesia and Thailand. This comes as their very own audio education initiative that offers insights based on Sennheiser’s expertise from years in the industry.

Things like selecting the right headphones for you, the right microphone for video-related production, proper maintenance of gear, and more are tackled at the forum.

A slew of audio solutions were also on display, but one of the products that caught our attention was the Sennheiser AMBEO Smart Headset. It was made available towards the end of last year and not only does it offer high fidelity audio, it also features noise cancellation, speech enhancement for calls, situational awareness, and true binaural sound recording.

In layman’s terms: True binaural recording means it records audio just like how your ears perceive sound.

Sennheiser teamed up with American digital audio company Apogee Electronics to come up with this device. It basically uses microphones embedded in each ear to mimic how the ears hear sound. With them around, you can shoot a video on your phone and audio will be recorded just like how you hear things at that moment.

We tried it for a short while and we’re actually impressed at how faithful it reproduced sound happening around us with extra depth and space.

We weren’t able to save the short video we took but above is a sample of the Sennheiser AMBEO at work.

As of the moment, this headset is only compatible with iPhones through a Lightning connector. Although the company says it will also be available for Android devices in the future.

Sennheiser believes 3D audio is the future of enhancing users’ listening experience and the AMBEO line might just be a step in the right direction.

The Sennheiser AMBEO Smart Headset retails for US$ 399.

SEE ALSO: Sony WH-1000XM2 hands-on: A new experience

Accessories

It’s happening: Perfume alerts and jewelry that open doors

Diamonds and gems, but better!

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What if I told you these gems could open doors for you?

Literally, it unlocks doors!

Computex has always been a haven of great tech finds and this year, sparkly things caught my eye. This is the Smart Xring from Yokojima Co. and — there’s no other way to say it — it’s the key to your lock.

No, really. Using RFID, you can use these eye-catching rings to open doors instead of doing with a key like normal boring folks.

And because accessorizing is important, there are other jewelry options, too.

That’s not all they can do. Depending on your notification settings, these stones will light up for alerts, and in different colors. For those who like their notifications more discreet, there’s also an option to spray perfume when you get a phone call — because why can’t we look and smell good while taking a call?

Of course, some would argue that as flashy as they may be, these aren’t real stones. But then again, can your real gems do all this?

Nope, I didn’t think so.

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Accessories

ORII smart ring: Now even better

Jewelry that does more

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Last year at Computex, I stumbled upon a cool smart ring and wrote about it. It was also my first year covering Computex and I had honestly never heard of bone actuator tech, hence the discovery of said smart ring that allowed me to make calls with my finger blew my mind.

This was the ORII ring, and a year later, I find them again at Computex and they have even more to offer.

When I first interviewed Emile and Kevin, founders of ORII’s Origami Labs, I only saw prototypes and one functioning ring for audio demos. These days, the rings are fully functional and are shipping to initial Kickstarter backers. More functionalities are added on, with even more features to come in the future.

What’s new with ORII?

For starters, the ORII ring is even smaller and more polished. It’s now at a size that I would actually wear for the tech.

And, as promised, it comes in more colors: There’s a red one that goes well with my hair, in addition to black, silver, and gray ones. This is a big deal to me because last year, there were only black and gray rings, and now color is finally here!

The ring comes with different ring sizes, too, so it fits every finger. It’s also splash-proof with an IPX7 rating so everyday wear is a possibility.

It comes with a charging dock, but it seems that the ring won’t be on it a whole lot as it has a whopping two days of battery standby time and two whole hours of talk time. That’s a lot considering you’ll only ever be using it for short commands and calls don’t usually last that long (we hope!).

So, how does it work?

With the ORII ring, you need only your finger to be able to hear things from your phone. The ring has a built-in mic so you can actually make calls — like a real spy.

Smart assistants are also compatible with the ORII. Using just the ring, you can send messages and issue smart commands to Google Assistant, Siri, or Alexa, without even having to look at your phone.

It has gesture commands and there’s also a button on the side of the ring that you can program depending on what you want it to do. For example, just raising your finger to your ear can activate the mic, or pressing the button can trigger your smart assistant.

At the bottom of the ring is a small LED light that’s a discreet way to give you notifications. Designed so only you can see the quick prompt, the lights are also fully customizable.


Meaning, you can change the colors depending on what app is alerting…

… or even choose which people messaging get special alerts.

Think of all the things you can do with this thing! Everything will literally be at the tip of your fingers.

Admittedly, I got sentimental when I tested out the ORII again. I personally saw the growth of this tech firsthand and it’s great to actually try out technology that only a year ago, Emile and Kevin were just describing to me. They’ve come a long way from last year and yet again I am impressed with their progress.

What I love about the ORII is how different it is to what we already have in the market. It’s great to see tech that breaks out from the usual mold of what current wearables are and what they do.

I’d totally rock this ring, and it’s not just because it matches my hair.

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Accessories

Father’s Day Gift Guide: Give back to our dads!

We made you a list so you won’t have to worry

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Father’s Day is just around the corner!

Take the chance to give back and send some love. Here’s a quick list of things you can give your dad:

Give him a smartwatch to track the important things in life

The Fossil Q Commuter is a hybrid smartwatch that doesn’t look like one. It’s classic and stylish, and it uses smart technology to keep your dad updated with all the important things in life.

Fossil Q Commuter (Dark Brown Leather) – US$ 155

A camera to capture all the moments and experiences

The Fujifilm Instax Mini 90 Neo Classic has that timeless retro look that even I really dig. It instantly prints your photos and is perfect for those who treasure every moment.

Fujifilm Instax Mini 90 Neo Classic – US$ 179.99

Give him a smartphone that gets things done

They always give their best for us, and it’s our chance to give them back the best. The Huawei P20 Pro is a leading smartphone in the market today, a match for the dad who’s always aiming to be on top!

Huawei P20 Pro – US$ 899

A wireless speaker he can bring wherever he goes

If he loves to move and groove, a JBL Flip 4 might be what he needs. It’s loud and it’s waterproof so he’ll have his sounds anytime, anywhere.

JBL Flip 4 – US$ 99.95

Give him a power bank so he’s always charged up

Make sure he’s connected by having his devices charged all the time. The Anker PowerCore Speed 10000 is pocketable and it’s packed with power. He’ll never be disconnected again!

Anker PowerCore Speed 10000 – US$39.99

Get him a wallet that protects his valuables

Give him the SERMAN BRANDS 1.0 wallet, equipped with RFID secure technology that will protect him from any unauthorized scans. It also comes in Texas Brown and is stylishly slim in genuine leather.

SERMAN BRANDS 1.0 (Texas Brown) – US$ 34.99

Give him the gift of adventure

If you’re feeling really generous, give him the Ford F-150 SVT Raptor. It’s a tough vehicle made for adventures. When was the last time your dad went to the great outdoors for some fun? Surely, that was ages ago. Let him enjoy his time!

2018 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor – US$ 50,675

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