Internet of thingsThere was a time when products were everything and after sales service were considered to have least importance from strategic and revenue generation standpoint. Traditional business models that were manufacture driven business models were the need of the hour and profit making was restricted to selling the products or devices.

This idea came to be challenged by the concept of IOT (Internet Of Things). This concept is defined as a conglomeration of items that are enabled via software and various forms of network connectivity to collect data and access each other across a wide range of existing network infrastructure. There emerges a defined link between our physical world and the virtual world that will invariably bring in automation in all fields.

Where are businesses heading with IOT?

With the estimation that more than 28 billion things may be connected to the Internet in the coming 5 years, it is but natural to assume that cloud connection is the next big thing in business portals. The improvements are not just expected to happen around devices that will become smarter and sharper but also around their incredible services that will compel people to subscribe to them for complete access. From wearable bracelets to cars and dogs, everything will probably become service layered. IOT is therefore looking at the possible boom in the global Internet population and is working towards an acceptable platform to prove the effectiveness of the plan.

Let us take a look at how businesses are moving towards IOT:

  • Gaming manufacturres:

Micro console gaming manufacturers believe that having their own version of the Android S and consequentially, their own community, game store and market place changes the way users look at these games. While the user can be a developer himself, the revenue is earned when he purchases game credits. This coupling of products and services is definitely proving to be a much better source of revenue and a more efficient way of keeping ahead in the business.

  • Connected Cars:

Not only can the owner track directions but also get walking directions to where exactly it is parked. Automated notices and alerts are sent to avoid over speeding and maintaining safety issues. Smart phones connected to these cars prevent the usage of mobile phones while on the go. These after sales services will be highly appreciated by people who look for ways to keep a check on safety even when absent from the site.

The end benefits that connected IOT devices can provide are:

  1. Easier lives: you can turn on the heater even before you reach home.
  2. Improved efficiency: you can turn on the washing machine at night when the electricity usage gets reduced.
  3. Anticipate what services you might need.

It is quite obvious that with so many potential benefits from IOT connected devices, this will create new winners and leave behind manufacturing-driven business models. The change in business systems will be for good, from the emotional as well as the revenue point of view; it will not only be a guaranteed success but also be a precursor of many more things to come.

If you are in the market for a new gaming laptop or are you upgrading the existing CPU, then you must be reading a lot of about the processors being used in them. The best processors in the market today are by Intel. The two top selling models are the Core i5 and Core i7. This article will help you understand which of the two is more suitable for you.

Both of these processors are from Intel and as such have many similar characteristics with a few exceptions. These differences are as follows:

  1. Cores: A core is an independent processing unit which means the better it is, the better your processing speed. Core i7 has a better processing power as compared to a Core i5. A single core performs one task at a time, which is why most CPUs have dual core or quad core processors to allow for multi-tasking. Both i7 and i5 are available in dual and quad forms. I7 is also available with 6 and 7 core processors.

  1. Hyper-threading: Hyper-threading is Intel’s nod to parallel processing. A core with hyper-threading behaves as multiple cores. For example, a single core processor with hyper-threading acts like a dual-core processor; a dual core processor with hyper-threading acts like a quad core processor. It is here that we see the difference between i7 and i5. i5 allows a maximum of four processes at one time and so a quad core with hyper-threading is not available. Whereas i7 has even a six core hyper-threading processor which can handle 12 processes at a time.

  1. Cache: Cache is the onboard memory which helps the processor do repetitive tasks faster and also help do a lot of background tasks without disturbing your work in progress. An i5 has a cache between 2–6MB, whereas some of the current i7 models even have 13MB caches.

  1. Clock Speeds: Clock Speed is a measure of the processor’s operating speed. It is measured in MHz (million pulses per second) or GHz (billion pulses per second). Both i5 and i7 have turbo boost feature which allows the processor to run at speeds higher than their base speed. The best i5 processor has a base clock of 2.3GHz and a max of 2.9GHz whereas i7 has a base of 2.6GHz and a boosted maximum of 3.2GHz.

  1. Addressable Memory: Most of i5 and i7 processors have a 16GB addressable memory. Some of the latest i7 are also being introduced with a 32GB memory.

In Conclusion

The Core i7 is a much more feature rich, faster and a higher power processor; however a system with Core i7 costs almost $200 more than a Core i5 system. So you can consider Core i7 only if you need a high processing speed for example if you run a large amount of data or do a lot of multimedia work or run scientific software etc. On the other hand if you are more interested in a regular usage like gaming etc. then the Core i5 might be a better choice for you.

Internet of Things – “The next big buzz”

Internet of things (IoT) refers to an environment where a group of objects and devices containing embedded electronics and software and are interconnected over network. The interlinked smart objects can process and exchange data. This new technology accelerates a faster and better tomorrow. The IoT technology when augmented with advanced sensors and circuits helps in achieving connectivity between physical world and computer based systems.

What does IoT connect?

Things” connected by Internet of Things can refer to a plethora of objects and systems in today’s technical world. They can be sensors, heart implant devices, Automobiles, Smartphone, DNA analysis devices, television, machineries etc. Till date, IoT is found to be implemented for only machine to machine connectivity. This list continues to expand as the IoT experts continue to develop advanced technologies. Experts are of the opinion that IoT will encompass around 50 billion objects in its network by 2020.

Types and categories

Based on enabling technologies, IoT can be classified as

  • RFID and near field communication

  • Optical tags and quick response codes

  • Low energy Bluetooth

Based on mode of implementation, IoT is further classified into

  • Wearable

  • Media

  • Home automation

  • Industrial automation

  • Smart appliances

Incredible abilities of IoT

Internet of Things is definitely set to change the world we live in and there is no looking back on that. There are many practical world examples to demonstrate the manifold uses of IoT. Few are listed below:

1. Smart cars with traffic optimization, driving directions and the ability to communicate with other smart cars.

2. Wearable devices that can track your daily activities, level of fitness, synchronize with your calendar and remind meeting schedules.

3. Baby monitors that provide parents with real time information about baby activities, body temperature and activities directly to Smartphone.

4. Ingestible pills relay information about human digestive systems and impact of medicines on the patient to a system stationed outside.

5. Intelligent shopping systems track user’s preferences and provide suggestions along with price details and location.

6. Various energy management and transportation systems are also embracing IoT for smarter execution.

7. IoT helps in monitoring and planning of city’s infrastructure. It monitors the change in structural conditions and also provides statistics on the infrastructure usage.

8. Smart industrial systems are increasingly being integrated with energy monitoring mechanism to provide and efficient and energy optimized production.

What does the future look like?

Experts and industrial giants are of the opinion that the future looks brighter day by day. Currently there are few controversies over the chances of security breach and autonomy if IoT is implemented. It could also result in manifold increase of waste disposal. However one cannot deny the fact that IoT is the giant among all technical advancements taking place. It has already started impacting the way we live. With more devices joining in, IoT promises to solve many problems. Future holds a lot of opportunities and challenges for humankind to explore and innovate.

phone cameraThe smartphone era has brought drastic improvement in the quality of photos being taken. With high pixel cameras, added with zooming feature, these photos were considered the best. 

But, of late, the advent of dual camera technology had proven that photos taken using smartphones can be better in terms of quality and precision.  The technology uses a combined output of two camera lenses to give a more precise, clear and crisp image.

The Game-Changing Technology

Corephotonics, a two year Israeli company had brought this concept a couple of years ago, which could revolutionize the concept of the future smartphone photography. The technology became hot topic in the mobile sector.

At present, the dual camera system possibly works only on Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 800 platform. This platform has signal processors for two images from both cameras and processes them simultaneously to give a final result.

The results are gained from two lenses with individual sensors- a side-angled lens and a telephoto lens. The data from both the lenses are processed by onboard software to give the final image. The processing will include comparison of images from both lenses and detecting the pixels that are off and use a comparatively clearer pixel for the picture.

Differential weightage is given to one or the other lenses based on the choice of zoom by the user. A 3x zoom is made possible for stills and 5x zoom for 1080p HD videos.

The dual camera is designed to provide quality shots even in low light areas with four times the resolution of what can be achieved with ordinary smartphones. The resultant image from both cameras will be significantly sharper while it is zoomed in. There is also less signal disruption compared to the digital zooms used at present. 

With the Corephotonics technology, phones are going to remain slim, but will deliver better image results. The only aspect that reportedly requires attention is the processing power of the phone. In order for the system to work perfectly, phones are supposed to have decent processing power, but it doesn’t have to be too excessive. 

The system enables keeping noise to minimum with its telephoto lens removed, hence taking black and white pictures. With more light coming in, the fidelity of the image is increased. The wide angle component still restores the color as it is, taking in all real aspects into the picture.

The dual technology captures HDR images in one shot, unlike others that takes three different shots. The usual motion blur from HRD shots is eliminated by this feature. All the processing is done in real time, avoiding discernible lags. With two cameras, focusing is also improved.

Corephotonics has developed and made this technology available for mobile users. The 13 megapixel sensor is directly available from Sony. The phones with dual camera lens will come with a slight premium for the extra lens. But there is still debate about whether or not the dual lens camera phones can compete with phones that use high pixel single lens camera.

Virtual reality has in the last few years become a familiar word. With 3D and 4D experiences, people are well versed with the concept and experience of virtual reality. Augmented reality, on the other hand, is still a little unfamiliar. The tech world is of course abuzz with it and there is constant research and development to improve and increase the involvement of augmented reality in our everyday lives

Are augmented reality and virtual reality the same thing?

The first and most common misconception is that augmented reality is the same or similar to virtual reality. Virtual reality is about showing the user an alternate virtual world, whereas augmented reality enhances and adds information to the world you are seeing be it virtual or real.

Augmented reality has the potential to change the face of technology, much like smartphones, when they first came in to the scene. A smartphone is like our personal remote control to a vast galaxy of data and augmented reality is much the same. As of now, augmented reality is nascent, but soon it will make its way into our lives and before we know it will become essential.

The drawback for augmented reality, as of now, is the logistics of the equipment one can use to run it. Though a smartphone can offer the platform, it’s not the ideal equipment to relay augmented information, whereas glasses would probably make a better fit (like they do for virtual reality).

There are prototype augmented reality glasses available in the market today that provide a glimpse of the future of this technology, but there is a great deal of potential for these model glasses to become more slender, more inexpensive and more user friendly.

Where does it fit?

Augmented reality will make its best fit in the virtual world for starters. The video game sector, in particular, has been the perfect entry point for augmented reality and it has already got its footprint in that segment.

Augmented reality has several benefits in other sectors too. Augmented and virtual reality together can provide assistance in quality control and training. There are prototype applications that allow optimizing of logistics and packing of inventory. The packer can find out size and weight of the boxes along with suggestions on the best position to optimally load the inventory.

There is also an augmented reality application that is intended to help the visually impaired and provide them with better mobility.

Training and maintenance are augmented/virtual reality technology can bring about a big change. So much money is spent on training, not just in terms of time, but materials too. It can help improve assembly line efficiency by training technicians virtually. Augmented/virtual reality applications can elevate workouts and provide better feedback and motivation for workout fanatics. A virtual classroom with augmented information will provide a unique learning experience for future generations, both at school and graduate levels.

The future possibilities are limitless. Augmented reality can change not just the face of technology but also how we perceive and use it. From education to employment, health and fitness to entertainment, augmented/virtual reality is poised to dive in and change the way we live.