Technology blitzkrieg from 2016: Oculus Touch, Hyperloop One, e-Skin and more

By : |December 20, 2016 0

Technology breakthroughs are the ones that make you sit up and take notice. Because, when they hit you, they are hard to ignore. 2016 was an year where we saw more than one such wonders. We had the Oculus rift experience, the hyperloop travel and the Amazon echo smart home speakers to keep us occupied. Here’s the list of what all technological advancements struck our world this year.

Oculus Touch

CIOL Technology blitzkrieg from 2016- Oculus Touch, Hyperloop One, E-skin and more

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The Oculus Rift touch controllers, though a little late to party was all that one needed for a perfect Oculus Rift experience and tops our list of Technology blitzkrieg from 2016.

Vive’s official consumer release of its motion-tracked controllers after Rift’s launch relegated the otherwise good hardware design to second class all because of the missing Touch. But they have finally arrived.

The best part of course is the much greater sense of control over your in-game hands that’s better than any one else in the market. “Before you even pick up a pair of Touch controllers, you know how to use them. Intuitive actions in VR feel as natural as using your real hands,” says the official website and trust us it cannot be more true.

Touch doesn’t offer finger-by-finger articulation, but it can give you surprisingly responsive virtual hands. If your forefinger isn’t on the trigger, for example, Touch intuits that you’re pointing it outward. It can tell precisely where on the top panel you’ve rested your thumb, and if it’s raised, put your virtual hand in a thumbs-up position.

Oculus Touch undoubtedly gives back Rift its lost throne as the most interesting and innovative VR headsets.

Hyperloop One

CIOL Technology blitzkrieg from 2016- Oculus Touch, Hyperloop One, E-skin and more

Hyperloop is the future of transportation that would whisk passengers and cargo racing through cushioned tubes at nearly the speed of sound. This transportation alternative could make it possible to travel from Montreal to Toronto in an hour or Toronto to Vancouver in just three.

Hyperloop One, in fact conducted first successful test of its high speed transportation technology in May with what appeared to be a blip of metal gliding across a small track before disappearing into a cloud against the desert landscape outside Las Vegas.

The Los Angeles company has also announced a collaboration with German rail operator Deutsche Bahn, the largest railway company in Europe to create an “Innovation Train”.

The best part is the ultra-fast rail system could soon hit Indian shores as the company is in talks with the Indian government to bring the technology and begin trials for their high-speed transportation technology in the country.

Amazon Echo

CIOL Technology blitzkrieg from 2016- Oculus Touch, Hyperloop One, E-skin and more

Amazon’s voice-activated smart home speaker christened as Alexa is undeniably futuristic, but it’s also practical and accessible. The real strength of this Bluetooth speaker that can connect to just about anything is its brain. Just like Siri or Google Now, ask it anything and it would answer.

Tell it to play music or add items to a shopping list or order things directly from Amazon or get news, weather and much more. It does it all.

It can also control several smart devices using itself as a home automation hub. The device prompted Google to unveil its own version of the same- Google Home.

Drone delivery

When on December 7, a bag of popcorn, along with an Amazon Fire TV stick, left a Cambridge warehouse in the UK to be delivered to an Amazon customer, it was history in making. The delivery involved no human agent. It was done by a fully autonomous drone.

The Seattle-based company would soon expand the trial to hundreds of users.

Interestingly, French postal services would soon employ drones to deliver mails to rural hinterlands and difficult terrains. Way to go drones!

e-skin

e-skin or the ultra-flexible gadgets which become a part of your biological self or get embedded with body parts are the new innovations that’s all set to transform the wearable technology market.

Typical e-skin consists of a matrix of different electronic components – flexible transistors, organic LEDs, sensors and organic photovoltaic (solar) cells – connected to each other by stretchable or flexible conductive wires.

Whether you want a light-up tattoo on your arm or measure blood oxygen levels, this technology has myriad applications both medically and otherwise.

2016 showed us that this is just the beginning. E-skin will surely redefine how we consume technology in the coming decade.

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