Amazon Key smart lock features are available across the US

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Amazon Key is a relatively new smart lock service that allows delivery people to enter your home (they're monitored, of course) and leave packages. Users can also grant entry to certain people while they're away, as well take advantage of keyless ent…
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5 Unexpected Ways Apple’s ARKit Is Changing the Customer Experience Across Industries

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Apple’s ARKit has great implications for e-commerce. It’s the next best thing to literally trying before you buy, and you can do it anywhere you have your iPhone with you. Thanks to AR, consumers get a better feel for products before purchasing, increasing cart checkout totals and reducing returns.

But the capabilities of AR promise big things for other industries, too. Here are five surprising ARKit applications that are changing the customer experience for the better.

1. Car Showrooms

Thanks to e-commerce and review sites, the car industry has been slowly shifting to be more customer friendly.

Augmented created a virtual showroom experience of a Mercedes sedan using ARKit. Users can walk around the car, open and close doors, and try out different paint colors, allowing them to get a feel for the car without having a pushy salesman breathing down their shoulder.

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Once they choose a model and color, users can take it for a test drive with Vincenzo, and imagine what the car would look like parked next to their apartment building.

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2. Ordering Food

Alper Guler of Kabaq Food Technologies created a food ordering app that helps users envision ordering food at a restaurant.

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It’s easy to apply the same technology to food delivery and meal kit services like Blue Apron. If consumers can imagine what the finished meal will look like on their table at home, they might be more quick to order or subscribe.

3. Event Marketing

At Disney’s D23 expo this summer, Steve Lukas dropped a “live” Mickey Mouse in front of the conference entrance.

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Companies can do something similar to enhance their brand presence at events, creating a virtual game or scavenger hunt experience to direct attendees their way.

4. Online Tutorials

Whether they’re hardcore DIYers or just want to take on a new craft project, one thing that gives customers pause is whether they’ll be able to actually assemble the final advertised product. Online tutorial videos exploded in recent years to help address this problem.

AR transfers the tutorial from YouTube to your very own craft table or garage, helping you put the product together yourself. Artists can gain inspiration from AR experiences like this one, which shows a friendly blob creature drawing a flower according to your command:

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5. Product Promotion

From logo decals to product samples, companies are always thinking up new ways to give you freebies along with what you purchased. AR unlocks yet another freebie option, allowing customers to bring the brand to life in their own home. For example, upcoming DVD releases of Star Wards might come with an AR version of BB-8 to watch the film alongside the purchaser:

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Alternately, brands can delight customers and cement their loyalty by doing crazy things with their product, like raining endless cans of La Croix down on the floor:

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Conclusion

ARKit will come to all iPhones this fall. Until then, stay up to date with the latest ARKit developments by following MadeWithARKit, a Twitter account and blog showcasing the best submissions so far.

Michael Quoc is the founder & CEO of Dealspotr, an open shopping platform bringing together up-and-coming brands, influencers, and savvy shoppers around today’s best deals. He was previously the Director of Product Management for Yahoo’s media lab, spearheading the launch of several innovative live video and mobile social networking services. Michael has been awarded nine patents relating to mobile and social network applications and technology. Follow him on Twitter at @michaelquoc.

The post 5 Unexpected Ways Apple’s ARKit Is Changing the Customer Experience Across Industries appeared first on ReadWrite.

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Pedometer++ Developer Shares Data on Apple Watch Adoption Rates Across All Models

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David Smith, the developer behind the popular Pedometer++ app for iPhone and Apple Watch, today shared some interesting user data that offers insight into Apple Watch adoption rates, and specifically, how quickly he’s seen Apple Watch Series 3 adoption grow.

Smith looked at data collected from August 1, 2017 (a month before the debut of the Apple Watch Series 3) to March 14, 2018. During that time, he’s seen rapid growth in the number of active Pedometer++ users who have an Apple Watch Series 3, and a steady decline in users who have an Apple Watch Series 0 or an Apple Watch Series 2, both of which are now discontinued.


Just under 35 percent of Pedometer++ users now have an Apple Watch Series 3, while around 24 percent have an Apple Watch Series 0, down from more than 40 percent in August of 2017.

According to Smith, he’s been keeping a close eye on Apple Watch Series 0 usage rates because he’s hoping that Apple will soon drop support for the original Apple Watch, which he describes as a “bit painful” to develop for.

It is just slow and honestly a bit painful to develop for. Even basic things like deploying your application to the watch can take uncomfortably long amounts of time. In daily use the Series 0 is probably “good enough” for many customers, especially with the speed/stability improvements added in watchOS 4, but as a developer I can’t wait until I no longer have to support it.

By contrast, Smith says the new Apple Watch Series 3 is “a delight to work with” because it’s fast, capable, and has LTE functionality that allows for new kinds applications. Smith is hoping watchOS 5 will drop support for the original Apple Watch, which is why he tracks falling Series 0 usage rates, but he does admit that the device is still adequate for many users who just need basic functionality.

When watchOS 5 launches, presumably this September, the original Apple Watch will be more than three years old, and Smith believes, that based on current trends, Series 0 usage could be as low as 15 to 20 percent in his Pedometer++ app, which presumably is reflective of overall usage rates.

For comparison’s sake, Apple ended support for the original iPhone, released in 2007, in 2010 when the fourth-generation version of iOS was released. Support for the first-generation iPod touch, also released in 2007, ended with the same operating system update.

Apple ended support for the first-generation iPad, released in 2010, with the launch of iOS 6 in 2013.

Apple clearly has a history of ending support for first-generation devices after a few years, but it’s not yet clear if the company will do the same for the original Apple Watch. Some of the original Apple Watch models, which were offered in 18-Karat gold, were priced at up to $17,000, so Apple could have unhappy customers when support for the device eventually ends.

For more of Smith’s Apple Watch adoption analysis, make sure to check out his full blog post.

Related Roundups: Apple Watch, watchOS 4
Buyer’s Guide: Apple Watch (Neutral)

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T-Mobile expanding RCS compatibility across carriers in Q2

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Today, T-Mobile is announcing its expansion of the infamous Rich Communication Services, or RCS. This is important because it gives Android users a successor to SMS (iOS already has iMessage) so that customers can have a better default messaging experience. RCS features include read receipts, typing notifications, and the ability to send much larger attachments over regular messaging so photos won’t degrade over MMS. Anyway, T-Mobile is announcing that it will start updating phones that it sells as of Q2 so that customers can take advantage of the GSMA Universal Profile which enables…

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Facebook plans to bring news to its Watch video platform across 2018

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Facebook is working on launching a news section within its Watch video platform, which could potentially ramp up the challenge to Apple News, or even Apple’s upcoming TV slate.
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Tesla raised its Supercharger rates across the US

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Tesla has increased its Supercharging rates across the US, Electrek reports. And while most states' prices increased by 20 to 40 percent, some experienced more substantial rises in costs. For example, California's rates rose from 20 cents per kWh to…
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Apple Maps has integrated bike sharing data in over 175 cities across 36 countries

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Apple customers are now able to find the nearest bike-sharing stations that are close to their vicinity using Apple Maps on their iPhone, iPad, Mac or Apple Watch…. Read the rest of this post here


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Chrome OS will soon preserve window positions across displays when disconnecting and reconnecting an external monitor

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Back when Chrome OS was first made public, people would often dismiss it as “just a browser” on a laptop. Fast forward to 2018, and while Chrome OS might not be able to perform every single task a full-fledged desktop computer can, it can certainly handle essentially anything an average user would need. Today, Chrome OS is able to run Android apps, work offline, and even do boring desktop stuff like change the wallpaper.

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The Finale Episode of Telltale’s ‘Batman: The Enemy Within’ Launches on March 27th Across All Platforms

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I only recently played the first season of Batman – The Telltale Series [Free] on the Switch after dabbling into it on iOS a while back. I quite like it and it maybe my favourite thing from Telltale after The Wolf Among Us. Batman: The Enemy Within [Free] is quite nice like the first season with a lovely atmosphere and more. The Enemy Within will conclude on March 27th. This finale episode will launch on all platforms at the same time and you can expect two finales from it. It is good to see Telltale release the finale at the same time on all platforms unlike some of the previous episodes in some of their games.

Batman: The Enemy Within’s Season Finale premieres on March 27th and the episode is titled ‘Same Stitch’. This will have two different finales with two possible Jokers in the single finale episode. Before you ask, you can absolutely play The Enemy Within without playing the first season but I’d recommend playing it anyway if you can.

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Android P brings HEIF media format that Apple supports across iOS 11 & macOS High Sierra

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Google today previewed its latest major Android update, known as Android P…. Read the rest of this post here


Android P brings HEIF media format that Apple supports across iOS 11 & macOS High Sierra” is an article by iDownloadBlog.com.
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