Tagged: Hardware


Amazon finally made the announcement for the worst kept is Amazon releasing a phone secret ever.  With their announcement they also answered the very important question, how many camera does a phone need to be cool?  If you’re like me and thought 1, then you obviously are not hip and need to learn the way of the selfie.  If you thought 2 then you must be enjoying your outdated phones and be looking to upgrade.  As Amazon showed today, to be cool you must have 6 cameras on your phone to be cool.  Hopefully on the Fire Phone 2 all 6 cameras will be able to take pictures so that you can save so much time by taking 5 selfies at once while also taking a picture of the weird guy standing in front of you.

Yes it has the 3D technology that everyone was talking about before the announcement.  It seemed ok, but I still think overall it’s more of a gimmick then a selling point.  The coolest thing announced with the phone has to be Firefly.  I like that it can call numbers for you from posters you scan, or other cool text parsing in images.  Thats all well and good, but the best use for it will be finding items in the Amazon store after taking a picture of them.  Now you don’t even need a third party app to go into Best Buy to window shop before making your final purchase on Amazon.  Retail stores I’m sure must not be very excited about that prospect.

While reading about the phone, I was super excited.  I’m probably as big of a Amazon homer as you can get.  Been a prime member for years, have the credit card, buy everything on Amazon, and own 2 Kindles.  I was super excited when reading the live updates during the announcement.  I was even throwing my money at my monitor trying to get the site to take my money for the phone, but then they had to go and ruin everything.  I don’t like AT&T.  I’ve had a lot of bad experiences in the past with them on both their customer support and service coverage.  When Amazon announced that it was going to be an AT&T exclusive, I immediately lost all interest in owning the phone.  Hopefully with the Fire Phone 2 that will for sure be released next year, Amazon will come to their senses and release it on Verizon.

Share Button

Image By: SteelSeries

Image By: SteelSeries


Apparently the only thing separating the pro gamers from all the normal folk is their eye movement.  Thanks to SteelSeries; that will soon be a thing of the past.  Even for people who aren’t interested in turning pro, it will still provide valuable data on what part of the scoreboards you spend most of your time looking at.  Are you one of the guys that admires the people at the top or do you prefer to laugh at all the peons lounging around on the bottom of the lists.

See where you spend most of your time looking.   Image By: SteelSeries

See where you spend most of your time looking.
Image By: SteelSeries

Really though, this could be an interesting piece of tech and I hope I’ll get my hands on it someday. It is pretty important when playing games at higher levels to know your surroundings, see the whole field, and not just fixate on a small section.  Having something like this could be helpful to see how well you are doing that.  Or maybe it’ll be the proof you need to really tell yourself that you do need to look at the damn minimap more.

Even if some people don’t think it provides a lot of benefit, having more data available to people who want to take that extra little time to analyze it can never hurt.  When playing games at the highest levels, it’s the smallest things that can make the difference between a good play and a game costing mistake.


Beyond the competitive games:

Imagine using your eyes to direct the cone. Image By: Stretegy Wiki

Imagine using your eyes to direct the cone.
Image By: Stretegy Wiki

Outside of the analytical aspects that this new gadget can provide to select gamers, this could also provide some very interesting changes to the way we play video games.  Just think the next time you’re playing War Thunder, Watch Dogs or really any game that involves locking onto targets; instead of having to push a button to target them instead you just have to look at them. It’s more natural that what you are looking at is what gets targeted, and also frees you up from having to press that button and can instead focus on other parts of the game.

For anyone who has played Madden before, I’m sure they remember the quarterback passing cone that they tried out for a few years.  It didn’t work out to well then, but think of what they could do if they were able to integrate the eye tracking into that feature.  You could now actually look off defenders just like the pros do.  Imagine looking at one side of the field, seeing the defenders starting to cheat and shift over, and then snapping back to the other side to hit the wide open receiver for a big play.


It’s bigger than games:

Really this technology goes beyond gaming.  One of the common ways for people with disabilities to communicate who can’t communicate through normal means is through eye tracking.  This could lead to advances in the technology they are already using.  Police forces could use something similar in training to help make sure officers are paying attention to the important things in different training scenarios.  I’m sure advertisers would love to be able to pull down some data from a poster/billboard and see what got a persons attention and what people spend most of their time looking at.  Magicians, the masters of misdirection themselves, might even be able to find a use for the technology.  I’m sure they would love to be able to more easily see how well their distractions work, or what people are actually paying attention to when they are performing their tricks.

Whenever new technology like this comes out, it’s always fun to think of the different ways it could be used.  Really though, I’m just hoping that I get a chance to try it someday.

Share Button