Life & Technology - 2GB 3rd May, 2015
Google is already a search engine, email provider, cloud storage service, map book and self-driving car builder and now the giant is entering the telco industry. In the US, Google has a launched its own mobile service. Much like Boost and Amaysim, Google’s network, dubbed Project Fi, is powered by other telco’s infrastructure. What makes Project Fi difference is that it can automatically connect to over a million, free Wi-Fi hotspots that Google has verified as safe, fast and reliable. As such, Project Fi customers don’t need to worry about being billed for data – but still have the option to buy data packs for when they leave hotspot coverage.
Project Fi is US only at the moment, and only compatible with the Nexus 6, but it would be great to see something like this come to life in Australia.
LG this week announced its brand new flagship smartphone, the LG G4; I haven't had the chance to go hands on with it, but I'm pretty sure I'm going to love it. The big change is a new rear-facing camera featuring an aperture of f/1.8 - the only smartphone shooter in its class according to Brad Reed, LG Australia's Senior Marketing Manager. Not only does this allow better low-light photography, it means you can take photos with a shallower depth of field. Essentially this means LG is bridging the gap between DSLR and smartphone! If you don't believe me, take a look at some of the images photographer Colby Brown (no relation!) has managed to take with the LG G4 here!
We talked about Amaysim going 4G a couple of weeks ago, and now the telco has gone and increased data allowances across the board. All customers will automatically be moved onto these new plans. Amaysim's 6GB, AUD$54.90 plan now includes 7GB of data; its 4GB AUD$44.90 per month plan now includes 5GB of data, and its 1.5GB, AUD$29.90 per month plan now includes 2GB of data.
Wesley Walker's a very clever man who's using technology to solve everyday problems. His line of work is plumbing, excavations and renovations, but he's using a thermal imaging camera to help the process. The camera can see things that the naked eye can't - leaks you think might be fixed for example. If you're interested in Wesley's services or leaning more about what he does, check out this Facebook page!
I also had a chat with Brad Little, Netgear Australia & New Zealand's managing director about a product he's just launched: the Netgear AC1600 Wi-Fi VDSL/ADSL Modem Router D6400. It's a bit of a mouthful, but if you're in line to get fibre-to-the-node NBN - or already have it - this could be a great device for you. The D6400 is designed to take advantage of the faster speeds afforded by the NBN - that's what the VDSL means. You might say that you already got a modem when you signed up, but the bundled devices ISPs give you aren't always great according to Brad. The D6400 promises blistering Wi-Fi, great range and more! If you're interested, Harvey Norman will have this one in stock soon for AUD$319.
We all love to work out with a great play list – I’ve got “Eye of the Tiger” on mine, but my earbuds often fall out when I’m on a run. Philips has launched just a new line of Sport headphones in Australia under its “ActionFit” range. There’s one in particular than I’m a fan of, the ActionFit Overdrive – they’re wired, in-ear buds that have adjustable “ear hooks”. These sit behind your ears, and mean your headphones won’t fall out, even during high-intensity workouts. Harvey Norman will be ranging these and they’re available for AUD$40 without a microphone, or for AUD$50 with an in-line microphone.
About Charlie Brown
Charlie Brown is one of Australia's foremost commentators on consumer lifestyle technology. He publishes, produces and hosts CyberShack, is Channel 9's technology expert, and hosts Life & Technology and 2GB and NewsTalk 4BC.
Charlie is able to communicate, educate and inspire a huge audience, without confusing technological jargon.
Life & Technology is on the air Sunday mornings at 10am on 2GB and NewsTalk 4BC.