Week in gadgets: Three-wheel Segway, M8 Prime and LG G3

26 May 2014

A look at this week’s gadget happenings, as a three-wheel Segway is revealed, HTC makes its M8 bigger, and LG showcases its new G3 phone with a wireless charging case.

Three-wheel Segway

Since launching in 2001, the Segway Personal Transporter (PT) has been made famous for its use by security guards and police forces across the world and by GOB from the TV series Arrested Development, but now the company has taken things a step further with the introduction of a new three-wheeled version to be known as the SE-3.

This new sturdier look device is aimed at making the device look less like a lazy person’s dream and rather more like an effective weapon to be used by police forces and security personnel.

Aside from purely aesthetic and ruggedness improvements from the PT, it’s also more likely to have been introduced to introduce greater competition after another similar device, the T3 Motion, has been eating into their once monopolised market.

Expecting a June launch, the SE-3 will be going for the ‘reasonable’ price of US$11,999.

HTC One M8 Prime

Continuing their trend of giving their latest devices rather clunky names with their recent announcement of the HTC One M8 Mini 2, leaks from the Taiwanese smartphone manufacturer appear to show that they are looking to also introduce a larger 5.5in display handset to the M8 that while being bigger in size, will also be more powerful.

Other visual changes appear to be on the back with the camera which now features a raised lens which would indicate the ability to focus, an improvement on the 4 MP sensor that has been installed on previous editions.

Other expected hardware improvements are reported to include a QHD (1440×2560) resolution, 3GB of RAM, and an improved LTE radio for supposedly faster 4G speeds than the M8.

As of yet however, details for the phone remain scant with a few images being released and the above information but nothing about price or release date and locations.


The zoom lense of the M8 Prime (image via EvLeaks)

LG G3 and Quickcircle case

While we’re on the topic of new smartphones, LG will soon be introducing its latest phone the G3, but most people’s attention will be on its Quickcircle case that will not only allow the user to charge the phone wirelessly through a charging pad, but includes the ability to select a number of apps through the circle interface in the case without needing to open the cover.

In its YouTube video explaining the concept, the G3 user can take and view photos, messages and receive and make calls through the small screen.

While at launch the Quickcircle screen will feature some standard apps, LG hope to release the software development kit (SDK) to allow other apps to integrate with screen.

This would make it appear much more useful than HTC’s Dot View case which, while visually appealing, does little more than tell the time.


Tribord Easybreath

Perhaps of interest to those who have always enjoyed the idea of snorkelling but find the whole cumbersome set-up of the mouthpiece and goggles that little bit frustrating.

To make the experience seem more natural, a French company have invented the Easybreath mask which unsurprisingly resembles something like a futuristic gas mask that surrounds your entire face.

The obvious benefits of the mask is that it allows the wearer to breathe through their nose and out through their mouth, something which they can’t do in a traditional snorkel and is more natural.

It will also reportedly give the wearer a nice 180 view to actually see the sea around them as opposed to attempting fruitlessly to wipe away the fog that fills the visor.

First shipments of the snorkel are expected to become available in Europe in the coming weeks.


Atari want to get back into hardware

Sadly for retro gamers, Atari’s confirmation that they want to begin producing hardware again for the first time in 21 years does not mean they are expecting to launch the successor to its last gaming console, the 64-bit Atari Jaguar.

While still remaining one of the most recognisable gaming brands, Atari in the preceding years has stuck to the less expensive products involved with software but are now toying with the idea of perhaps making other smaller gaming devices.

Speaking to Gamebeat, Atari’s CEO Frederic Chesnais suggested that they might make something akin to a gaming watch: “To give you another idea of something we could do, you have a jacket. We have a plug-in so you can power your iPhone or Android. You had a solar chip on your shoulder so that you power… so that you never run out of batteries.

“Things like this. Would you buy an Atari watch? Would you buy an Atari Jacket that you could plug and repower your iPhone or whatever device you are using? I think you would… I think you would.”

No doubt there is a loyal contingent of Atari fans out there shouting at their screens: “Shut up and take my money!”

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic