Real innovation in a gimmicky world
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Real innovation in a gimmicky world

A low-down on products that offer technology, which is jaw-dropping and life-changing too

brunch Updated: Oct 16, 2017 11:24 IST
Rajiv Makhni
Rajiv Makhni
Hindustan Times
Gaurav Gupta,Vogue Women Awards 2017,LED-laden dress
The Mio Slice is a revolutionary new product that only gives you credit for the time your heart actually works hard

Real innovation versus gimmicks. True technology leaps versus hype. It’s difficult to determine which is which until after you’ve bought a product and used it for sometime. I wrote about a few products I had used that broke the innovation barrier and were actually useful in my day-to-day life. I’ve been asked again and again to come up with some more. Here then is another round-up of products that are jaw-dropping and life-changing all at once.

Mio Slice breaks the steps myth

Fitness bands are awesome – counting your steps and distance, keeping you motivated and fit. But that’s the greatest problem within. Steps you take when you get out of bed, walking leisurely around your office or even when you’re driving a car – they mean nothing. And it won’t give you credit and steps for a spinning class or weightlifting. That’s why, the Mio Slice is a revolutionary new product that counts your true fitness. It only gives you credit for the time your heart actually works hard. Thus, when you’re weightlifting, spinning or rowing, it won’t give you useless steps. It’ll give you your PAI number – Personal Activity Intelligence. It only kicks in when your heart works at a certain intensity level. The Mio Slice also has by far the most accurate heart rate sensor in the world. It’s backed by one of the world’s largest health studies involving 45,000 people over 25 years that shows that an accurate PAI level per day can extend your life expectancy by about five years. Steps are out, PAI is in. The even bigger news: Mio Slice is now available in India.

Comio C2 super security phone

The Comio C2 has an Intruder Selfie feature that lets you know who tried to unlock it

Even though it’s the security functions in this phone that make it stand out, its design is what will hit you hard first. Stunning ergonomics, very subtle gold add-ons, a 4000mAh battery, scratch free body, three slots for two SIMs and 1 Micro SD Card – makes it a phone way above its 7K price band. Ever since the Face ID security was announced by Apple for its iPhone X, security on phones has become a big deal. And Comio takes it to a whole new level. If your phone is stolen or misplaced, it can send out SIM-based alerts to other mobile numbers. Then there’s an Intruder Selfie feature. If someone tries to unlock the device by trying to break the pattern or PIN, the device automatically shoots a picture of the person with the front camera. So you can identify who tried to get into your phone without your knowledge. Girlfriends, boyfriends, husbands, wives – be afraid, very afraid :)

LG mosquito away phone

LG’s K7i has an ultrasonic device that drives away mosquitoes

Malaria, dengue, chikungunya, Japanese encephalitis – just a very small list of diseases spread by the mosquito. The mosquito is now responsible for the maximum deaths in this country as compared to any other animal and insect (including humans killing other humans). Not a pretty statistic. LG seems to have hit a home run here. The new K7i comes with an ultrasonic device that emits a sound at a frequency that humans cannot hear and yet irritates mosquitoes to the point that they want to commit suicide. Indoors or outdoors, keep this phone in your pocket or around you and the mosquito army will keep far away from you. In all our tests, this worked like magic. Mosquitoes – your reign may well be over!

IBM Watson clothing

Gaurav Gupta’s LED-laden dress changes colour as per your personality traits

The place – Mumbai. The event – Vogue Women Awards 2017. The Audience – more than 200 of the top socialites and Bollywood stars.

IBM’s Artificial Intelligence super-computer analyses every tweet you’ve ever done and creates a personality profile from within that

My state of mind – intimidated duck out of water. Highlight of the evening – Gaurav Gupta and IBM Watson’s first ever truly cognitive dress. This is how it works. You enter your twitter handle, IBM’s Artificial Intelligence supercomputer analyses every tweet you’ve ever done (every!) in milliseconds and creates a personality profile from within that. It then assigns colour to the most dominant personality trait and Gaurav Gupta’s stunning LED-laden dress then changes to that colour. Jaw-dropping technology. But this is just the beginning. IBM Watson has the ability to analyse text, images and illustrations. The next level would be IBM analysing every single design and every single piece of clothing ever created and predict future trends and even design clothes.

By the way, IBM Watson did an analysis of every piece of social media I’ve ever posted. The result? I’m overbearing, fake and arrogant. Scary how accurate it was :)

Rajiv Makhni is managing editor, Technology, NDTV, and the anchor of Gadget Guru, Cell Guru and Newsnet 3

From HT Brunch, October 8, 2017

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First Published: Oct 07, 2017 21:37 IST