This is the future of mirrors

Max Braun, a software engineer at Google, has combined a few hardware and software components  to create a mirror that is certainly smarter than all the mirrors I’ve seen in my entire life.

This connected device is not cheap (the display panel is $450 alone) but the result is certainly impressive and shows the way to what mirrors could and should be in the future.

Sure, you could just have a smartphone or a tablet in your bathroom showing this information or a energizing morning video to get you on the mood, but this is far more attractive. In fact Darren Orf has expressed exactly my point at Gizmodo:

Google. If you need moonshot projects that actually make money, this is it. I will buy it immediately. Just tell much money I need to throw at you.

Exactly my point, as I was saying. Let’s see how much time is gone before someone launches something like this in Kickstarter.

Smartwatches didn’t kill the Fitbit

Lauren Goode on The Verge:

NPD estimates that nearly 33 million fitness trackers were out there in the wild by the end of the fourth quarter of 2015 (though, not necessarily being worn —see earlier point), compared with 13 million smartwatches. And Fitbit still holds a whopping share of the activity tracking market, accounting for 79 percent of sales.

I made the same mistake twice. I thought tablets would kill the e-reader -wrong- and I thought that smartwatches would kill the fitbit and other similar wearables.

On that early thoughts, I assumed that e-readers didn’t deliver anything special to the reading experience. They did, of course: easier on the eyes, free-distraction reading and an everlasting battery were arguments too important to dismiss.

The same has happened with wearables: they have become something nice to wear on, they provide simplicity and don’t overcomplicate the product, and again, they’ve got near everlasting batteries -at least, compared to smartwatches-.

Hopefully I won’t make the same mistake again. A device that does something but also a lot of other things isn’t necessarily better. In fact, most of the times the experience is worse when you were just looking for that something in the first place.

Google’s Nexus tries to learn the iPhone lesson

Google wants to make its Nexus phones more like the iPhone

We had heard about this previously, but now The Information confirms that Google is indeed seeking to have more and more control over its Nexus smartphones.

The plan is simple: no visible partnerships in order to compete in the high end range, where the iPhone leads the way. They want to control the hardware as much as they do control the software (Android and Google Services & apps) right now.

Everything sounds perfect except for that tiny, obvious detail: Google depends of other makers in order to compete as it has done until now. Controlling every aspect of the device won’t be easy for its traditional partners, and we must wonder what will the do then.

Will they make the jump to other platform (Tizen, Windows 10) or fork (CyanogenMod seems a good fit)? Or will they try to compete with their own partner in unfair conditions?

Microsoft tried that and so long it hasn’t worked. But then again, Google is another beast.