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3
Sep

Awesome tech you can’t buy yet: Self-healing gear bags and 3D-printed jewelry


At any given moment, there are approximately a zillion different crowdfunding campaigns happening on the Web. Take a stroll through Kickstarter or Indiegogo and you’ll find no shortage of weird, useless, and downright stupid projects out there – alongside some real gems. We’ve cut through the Pebble clones and janky iPhone cases to round up the most unusual, ambitious, and exciting new crowdfunding projects out there this week. That said, keep in mind that any crowdfunding project — even the best intentioned — can fail, so do your homework before cutting a check for the gadget of your dreams.

Wooden Word Watch — Alphabetical timepiece

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Ever seen that sweet typographical clock that spells out the time in full words instead of numbers? The Qlocktwo, as it’s called, hit the scene a few years ago and has since gone on to win numerous awards for its innovative and visually appealing design. A couple years after its big debut, the company behind the clock released a smaller, more wrist-friendly version called the Qlocktwo W. It’s basically a watch with the same typographic clock face, just miniaturized a bit. The only problem, however, is that both the original and wrist-borne iterations of the Qlocktwo are outrageously expensive.

But don’t fret — there’s a fresh new project up on Kickstarter for a wristwatch that boasts a very similar design — but for a tiny fraction of the price. The blandly-named Wooden Word Watch is exactly what it sounds like: a wooden watch that bears a striking resemblance to the Qlocktwo clock, and displays time typographically instead of numerically. The best part, however, is that you can reserve one now on Kickstarter for just $219 — nearly a quarter of the price of the Qlocktwo W. If you’re a fan of good design or a watch collector looking to add a unique piece to your collection, this thing should definitely be on your radar.

Wolverine Pack – Self-healing utility bag

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High-performance textiles have come a long way in the past couple decades, and now gear manufacturers have a veritable boatload of different materials to choose from when designing stuff. There’s super lightweight stuff like cuben fiber, waterproof stuff like GoreTex, and even super durable slash-proof fabric like Dyneema. But the material the Wolverine Pack is made from makes the aforementioned textiles seem like they’re from the Stone Age. This compressible utility pack is made from something called FuseFabric — a new material that allegedly has self-healing abilities.

In the unfortunate event that your Wolverine Pack should get punctured, all you need to do is pinch the fabric around the hole and rub it between your fingers. Due to the material’s unique construction, this slight bit of friction and heat will cause the fibers to bond with each other and fuse together again — thereby filling the puncture. We haven’t seen this stuff in person yet, so we’re still a bit wary about how effective it is — but there’s a pretty convincing video in the “prototyping” section of the campaign. Check it out and see for yourself!

FlexSafe — flexible, portable lockbox

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Lock boxes come in just about every shape, size, and configuration these days. There are ones you can unlock with your fingerprint, ones that link to your smartphone, and even ones that call the cops if tampered with. Despite all this diversity and technological sophistication, however, most lockboxes suffer from the same drawback: they’re heavy as hell. Because safes by definition should be hardy and tough to break into, the vast majority of them are made out of metal, which is inherently rigid, heavy, and inconvenient to carry along with you. But what if there was a lightweight, flexible option that still offered the same level of protection against thieves?

That’s precisely the idea behind FlexSafe. It’s totally unlike any lockbox you’ve ever seen. Instead of layered steel, this badboy is made from a variety of special textiles that make it slash proof, smash-proof, and otherwise impervious to thieves. On top of that, the bag’s unique locking mechanism allows you to attach it to just about anything — be it a bike frame, a telephone pole, or even your deck chair at the pool. FlexSafe also boasts a variety of high-tech features as well, including an RFID-blocking interior, a motion-triggered alarm, and an optional power bank that recharges in the sun.

Tofu — Universal travel adapter/charger

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If you ever plan to visit different countries in a single trip, bringing along a universal travel adapter is crucial. Depending on where you land, the outlets are likely to be completely different than what you’re used to — which means you’ll need an adapter to juice up your electronics. Luckily, there are tons of universal travel adapters on the market right now. You can pick one up for under $20 on Amazon right now — but the thing is, most of them aren’t so great. The vast majority of adapters you’ll find aren’t equipped with fuses, and virtually all of them are bulky and inconvenient for travel. Tofu is an attempt to change that.

Unlike most universal travel adapters, this one is designed to be slim, sleek, and travel friendly. On top of that, it’s also equipped with a fuseless design. Generally speaking, fuses are a good thing — as they prevent power surges from frying your devices. But they also have to  be replaced after they burn up — which is inconvenient when you’re traveling around a foreign country and don’t know where to find a replacement. To avoid this, Tofu employs a fuseless system that’s allegedly still capable of protecting your laptop from unexpected power surges.

Bezel — 3D printed jewelry

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Ever wished you could design custom jewelry the same way you design a custom t-shirt? Well if Chicago-based upstart Bezel succeeds with its freshly-launched Kickstarter campaign, you might soon be able to. In an effort to disrupt the jewelry industry, Bezel has developed an innovative platform that allows you to design, scale, and print jewelry from your smartphone or tablet. And we’re not talking about cheap plastic either. Thanks to recent advances in 3D printing technology, anything you design on Bezel can be printed in real, jewelry-grade metal.

What’s more, that’s not even the coolest part. Once you’ve uploaded your design, you can actually use the app to “wear” your creation virtually to see how it looks on you. The real innovation, however, is in Bezel’s sizing process. The app uses your smartphone’s camera (and a bundle of highly-sophisticated algorithms) to calculate the circumference of your fingers and determine your ring size. Believe it or not, Bezel’s software is so precise that it can approximate ring circumference for every digit on your hand, with millimeter accuracy. All that information is stored in the cloud and can be applied to any future designs you upload.




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3
Sep

Awesome tech you can’t buy yet: Self-healing gear bags and 3D-printed jewelry


At any given moment, there are approximately a zillion different crowdfunding campaigns happening on the Web. Take a stroll through Kickstarter or Indiegogo and you’ll find no shortage of weird, useless, and downright stupid projects out there – alongside some real gems. We’ve cut through the Pebble clones and janky iPhone cases to round up the most unusual, ambitious, and exciting new crowdfunding projects out there this week. That said, keep in mind that any crowdfunding project — even the best intentioned — can fail, so do your homework before cutting a check for the gadget of your dreams.

Wooden Word Watch — Alphabetical timepiece

Please enable Javascript to watch this video

Ever seen that sweet typographical clock that spells out the time in full words instead of numbers? The Qlocktwo, as it’s called, hit the scene a few years ago and has since gone on to win numerous awards for its innovative and visually appealing design. A couple years after its big debut, the company behind the clock released a smaller, more wrist-friendly version called the Qlocktwo W. It’s basically a watch with the same typographic clock face, just miniaturized a bit. The only problem, however, is that both the original and wrist-borne iterations of the Qlocktwo are outrageously expensive.

But don’t fret — there’s a fresh new project up on Kickstarter for a wristwatch that boasts a very similar design — but for a tiny fraction of the price. The blandly-named Wooden Word Watch is exactly what it sounds like: a wooden watch that bears a striking resemblance to the Qlocktwo clock, and displays time typographically instead of numerically. The best part, however, is that you can reserve one now on Kickstarter for just $219 — nearly a quarter of the price of the Qlocktwo W. If you’re a fan of good design or a watch collector looking to add a unique piece to your collection, this thing should definitely be on your radar.

Wolverine Pack – Self-healing utility bag

Please enable Javascript to watch this video

High-performance textiles have come a long way in the past couple decades, and now gear manufacturers have a veritable boatload of different materials to choose from when designing stuff. There’s super lightweight stuff like cuben fiber, waterproof stuff like GoreTex, and even super durable slash-proof fabric like Dyneema. But the material the Wolverine Pack is made from makes the aforementioned textiles seem like they’re from the Stone Age. This compressible utility pack is made from something called FuseFabric — a new material that allegedly has self-healing abilities.

In the unfortunate event that your Wolverine Pack should get punctured, all you need to do is pinch the fabric around the hole and rub it between your fingers. Due to the material’s unique construction, this slight bit of friction and heat will cause the fibers to bond with each other and fuse together again — thereby filling the puncture. We haven’t seen this stuff in person yet, so we’re still a bit wary about how effective it is — but there’s a pretty convincing video in the “prototyping” section of the campaign. Check it out and see for yourself!

FlexSafe — flexible, portable lockbox

Please enable Javascript to watch this video

Lock boxes come in just about every shape, size, and configuration these days. There are ones you can unlock with your fingerprint, ones that link to your smartphone, and even ones that call the cops if tampered with. Despite all this diversity and technological sophistication, however, most lockboxes suffer from the same drawback: they’re heavy as hell. Because safes by definition should be hardy and tough to break into, the vast majority of them are made out of metal, which is inherently rigid, heavy, and inconvenient to carry along with you. But what if there was a lightweight, flexible option that still offered the same level of protection against thieves?

That’s precisely the idea behind FlexSafe. It’s totally unlike any lockbox you’ve ever seen. Instead of layered steel, this badboy is made from a variety of special textiles that make it slash proof, smash-proof, and otherwise impervious to thieves. On top of that, the bag’s unique locking mechanism allows you to attach it to just about anything — be it a bike frame, a telephone pole, or even your deck chair at the pool. FlexSafe also boasts a variety of high-tech features as well, including an RFID-blocking interior, a motion-triggered alarm, and an optional power bank that recharges in the sun.

Tofu — Universal travel adapter/charger

Please enable Javascript to watch this video

If you ever plan to visit different countries in a single trip, bringing along a universal travel adapter is crucial. Depending on where you land, the outlets are likely to be completely different than what you’re used to — which means you’ll need an adapter to juice up your electronics. Luckily, there are tons of universal travel adapters on the market right now. You can pick one up for under $20 on Amazon right now — but the thing is, most of them aren’t so great. The vast majority of adapters you’ll find aren’t equipped with fuses, and virtually all of them are bulky and inconvenient for travel. Tofu is an attempt to change that.

Unlike most universal travel adapters, this one is designed to be slim, sleek, and travel friendly. On top of that, it’s also equipped with a fuseless design. Generally speaking, fuses are a good thing — as they prevent power surges from frying your devices. But they also have to  be replaced after they burn up — which is inconvenient when you’re traveling around a foreign country and don’t know where to find a replacement. To avoid this, Tofu employs a fuseless system that’s allegedly still capable of protecting your laptop from unexpected power surges.

Bezel — 3D printed jewelry

Please enable Javascript to watch this video

Ever wished you could design custom jewelry the same way you design a custom t-shirt? Well if Chicago-based upstart Bezel succeeds with its freshly-launched Kickstarter campaign, you might soon be able to. In an effort to disrupt the jewelry industry, Bezel has developed an innovative platform that allows you to design, scale, and print jewelry from your smartphone or tablet. And we’re not talking about cheap plastic either. Thanks to recent advances in 3D printing technology, anything you design on Bezel can be printed in real, jewelry-grade metal.

What’s more, that’s not even the coolest part. Once you’ve uploaded your design, you can actually use the app to “wear” your creation virtually to see how it looks on you. The real innovation, however, is in Bezel’s sizing process. The app uses your smartphone’s camera (and a bundle of highly-sophisticated algorithms) to calculate the circumference of your fingers and determine your ring size. Believe it or not, Bezel’s software is so precise that it can approximate ring circumference for every digit on your hand, with millimeter accuracy. All that information is stored in the cloud and can be applied to any future designs you upload.




3
Sep

‘iPhone 8’ May Include Option to Activate Siri By Holding the Sleep/Wake Button


In the absence of a physical Home button, Apple’s so-called “iPhone 8” may allow users to activate Siri by holding down the Sleep/Wake button if they prefer not to do so using the voice command “Hey Siri”. That’s according to iOS developer Guilherme Rambo, based on a discovery he has made in source code that points to the possibility.

In a tweet posted on Saturday, Rambo said he wondered if Apple had moved any of the original Home button’s functionality to the “lock” button (or Sleep/Wake, as Apple calls it) located on the upper right side of the handset. When asked by a follower if he had found something in Apple’s code to suggest this, Rambo revealed that he had indeed discovered a gesture to invoke Siri by holding the lock button.

It’s unclear what type of code Rambo refers to, but the Brazilian developer has previously unearthed details of upcoming Apple products in the company’s beta software, including references to a 4K Apple TV in tvOS 11 as well as references in early HomePod firmware to some features widely expected in the company’s upcoming OLED iPhone.

I did find a gesture to invoke Siri by holding the lock button.

— Guilherme Rambo (@_inside) September 2, 2017

Apple’s radically redesigned iPhone does away with the Home button entirely, relying instead on a new gestural interface that includes a “software bar” along the bottom of the screen and an app dock similar to the one found in iOS 11 on iPad.

While next-generation facial recognition technology is said to replace Touch ID fingerprint authentication, details are murky as to how Apple plans to remap other functions that traditionally involve pressing the Home button. For instance, any method of invoking Siri using the Sleep/Wake button would need to be sufficiently distinct from the current long press that powers down the iPhone, unless Apple has also relocated the latter function elsewhere.

All should be revealed at the company’s September 12 media event, where Apple is expected to unveil its “premium” OLED iPhone alongside new upgraded versions of iPhone 7 and 7 Plus, a fifth-generation Apple TV, and an Apple Watch Series 3 range with LTE capability. Apple will stream the event live on its website and on the Apple TV, but for those who are unable to watch, MacRumors will be providing full event coverage, both on MacRumors.com and through our MacRumorsLive Twitter account.

Related Roundups: iPhone 8, iOS 11
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3
Sep

‘The Division’ finally adds to its open-world game map


After spending much of the past year upgrading The Division’s core gameplay and its player-versus-player content, Ubisoft is ready to turn its attention to fresh player-versus-environment material — and that finally includes a new area to play in. The free Resistance update will add the West Side Pier, a two-zone map expansion that includes its own social space and unusual combat environments like the USS Intrepid. And importantly, this isn’t just more of the usual AI grind. In a livestream, Ubi revealed that there will be frequent alerts for new events, short-term mini assignments (new ones will pop up every 15 to 20 minutes) and dynamic enemy spawning. If you finish those smaller tasks, you’ll get the same Division Tech resources that you would normally have to earn in the PvP Dark Zone area.

The update will also add a namesake Resistance mode, which has up to four players taking on waves of enemies (read: it’s a horde mode), as well as a four-on-four Skirmish that resembles a classic time-based multiplayer match, just with the requirement that you finish players off for your kills to count. Ubisoft plans to release the upgrade in the fall.

The addition could be welcome by loyal Division players who’ve been aching for more dramatic updates to the open-world title. There will be a strong incentive to keep coming back to the game even if you hate the Dark Zone. As Kotaku notes, though, there’s a big problem: the awkward timing. Word of the Resistance update is coming just before the launch of Destiny 2 — you know, that other shared-world shooter. The Division update is free to existing owners, but it may struggle to compete for attention when D2 is promising a fresh experience (especially for Destiny newcomers) and has a marketing juggernaut behind it.

Via: Kotaku

Source: Ubiblog, The Division (Twitch)

3
Sep

Mercedes teases hybrid supercar with Formula 1 tech


You’ve seen hybrid supercars before, but likely nothing quite so exotic as this. Mercedes-Benz is teasing the debut of the Mercedes-AMG Project One, a hybrid “supersports showcar,” at the Frankfurt International Motor Show beginning September 14th. While the preview image doesn’t show much besides a GT-style body (complete with an air scoop on the roof), Mercedes makes much ado of the car’s Formula 1 underpinnings — both powerplants amount to race car technology adapted to “day-to-day” use.

Based on previous info, the machine will combine an F1-based 1.6-liter turbo V6 with two electric motors: a 134HP motor linked to the crankshaft, and a 107HP motor that minimizes turbo lag, even though the engine can rev up to an extreme 11,000RPM. The hardware promises over 1,000 combined horsepower and a 217MPH top speed, yet it should offer 15.5 miles of pure electric driving. And yes, all that raw power is as punishing as you’d suspect — just like a race car, you’ll need to rebuild the engine every 31,000 miles.

Needless to say, this will be hard to get. Even if you can swing the expected $2.54 million sticker price for Project One, AMG says it only expects to make 275 units. There’s a good chance that business tycoons will snap up the production run almost immediately. Still, it’s good to see hybrid technology taken to its limits before electric supercars take over.

Source: Mercedes-Benz

3
Sep

Virtual reality deployment is a big part of this Navy training program


Why it matters to you

The Navy has announced a major overhaul of the LCS program that includes virtual reality training using sophisticated simulators.

At Naval Base San Diego, sailors are training for deployment on the ships of the future – all without stepping off dry land. The Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) Training Facility is designed to train not only individual sailors but whole crews while ashore, shortening or even eliminating some of the on-the-job training aboard the actual ship at sea.

To say that the LCS program has faced some stormy waters would be an understatement. It’s been plagued with technical glitches and problems since before the first ship was launched in 2008. The ships were years late and way over budget. The LCS mine detector couldn’t even detect mines.

More than half of the LCS fleet deployed since 2015 – five of eight ships – have experienced mechanical breakdowns that have sidelined the ships for months. The Navy has recently opted to “reboot” the training and testing regimens of the entire LCS fleet. The future of the program is uncertain, with some ships being canceled and others reconfigured as training ships.

Originally, the Navy had planned for three crews to rotate through two ships, with longer deployments for the ships and fresh crews. The new deployment uses two crews — one deployed and one onshore training for each ship, similar to how the Navy deploys its “blue” and “gold” submarine crews.

As part of its operational “pause” in the training and testing of the new ships, the Navy has begun to rely even more on the virtual simulators of the LCS Training Facility.

Captain Ronald W. Toland Jr.. commander of the Fleet Anti-Submarine Warfare Training Center, calls it “LCS University” and cites aviation simulators and submarine schools as inspirations for the program. “We’re even learning things about the LCS ships on the simulators before we see it at sea,” he said.

The training program is so successful that a second campus is planned for Mayport, Florida, the East coast base for the LCS program. Captain Jordy Harrison is the former commander of the guided-missile destroyer Halsey. “I want crews to make their mistakes in the classroom and the simulator here before they come aboard the ships to prove their capabilities,” he said. “I was a healthy pessimist of this program before I came to the squadron, too, but they’ve made changes. It’s paying off.”




3
Sep

Virtual reality deployment is a big part of this Navy training program


Why it matters to you

The Navy has announced a major overhaul of the LCS program that includes virtual reality training using sophisticated simulators.

At Naval Base San Diego, sailors are training for deployment on the ships of the future – all without stepping off dry land. The Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) Training Facility is designed to train not only individual sailors but whole crews while ashore, shortening or even eliminating some of the on-the-job training aboard the actual ship at sea.

To say that the LCS program has faced some stormy waters would be an understatement. It’s been plagued with technical glitches and problems since before the first ship was launched in 2008. The ships were years late and way over budget. The LCS mine detector couldn’t even detect mines.

More than half of the LCS fleet deployed since 2015 – five of eight ships – have experienced mechanical breakdowns that have sidelined the ships for months. The Navy has recently opted to “reboot” the training and testing regimens of the entire LCS fleet. The future of the program is uncertain, with some ships being canceled and others reconfigured as training ships.

Originally, the Navy had planned for three crews to rotate through two ships, with longer deployments for the ships and fresh crews. The new deployment uses two crews — one deployed and one onshore training for each ship, similar to how the Navy deploys its “blue” and “gold” submarine crews.

As part of its operational “pause” in the training and testing of the new ships, the Navy has begun to rely even more on the virtual simulators of the LCS Training Facility.

Captain Ronald W. Toland Jr.. commander of the Fleet Anti-Submarine Warfare Training Center, calls it “LCS University” and cites aviation simulators and submarine schools as inspirations for the program. “We’re even learning things about the LCS ships on the simulators before we see it at sea,” he said.

The training program is so successful that a second campus is planned for Mayport, Florida, the East coast base for the LCS program. Captain Jordy Harrison is the former commander of the guided-missile destroyer Halsey. “I want crews to make their mistakes in the classroom and the simulator here before they come aboard the ships to prove their capabilities,” he said. “I was a healthy pessimist of this program before I came to the squadron, too, but they’ve made changes. It’s paying off.”




3
Sep

SpaceX finishes testing Falcon Heavy’s first stage cores


SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy rocket has been in the works for so long that it almost feels like the stuff of legend at this point (Elon Musk first unveiled it in 2011), but there are signs that it might make that promised November launch. The private spaceflight outfit has just finished testing Heavy’s three first stage cores at its McGregor, Texas facility, ending a cycle that began in May. It’s not as dramatic as an actual launch, of course (the image you see above is just a conceptual render), but it’s an important step toward prepping the rocket for its debut.

Falcon Heavy ultimately amounts to three Falcon 9 rockets linked together (one of which is strengthened), but it should be crucial to SpaceX’s future business. Right now, a solo Falcon 9 can’t carry more than 50,000lbs on a one-way trip to low Earth orbit. The Heavy system, however, will haul 140,700lbs into that same orbit, and should be powerful enough to participate in voyages to the Moon and Mars. The sooner the company can get Falcon Heavy into service, the sooner it can handle challenging missions that are barely on its radar.

Falcon Heavy’s 3 first stage cores have all completed testing at our rocket development facility in McGregor, TX https://t.co/GJu23QdZRK pic.twitter.com/ivVXPhWu0u

— SpaceX (@SpaceX) September 2, 2017

Source: SpaceX (Twitter)

3
Sep

Alexa can brief you on the latest in music news


Alexa’s Flash Briefings can help start your day by telling you about the latest headlines from various news sources and podcasts. Now, the voice assistant can also tell you what’s going on about your favorite musicians. Amazon has launched “Today in Music” to provide you updates about the newest music news, releases, events and music-related Prime and Unlimited features, as well as to dole out music trivia and to hear exclusive commentary from artists. Everything will be curated by “the experts at Amazon Music,” who’ll also squeeze in tidbits about the playlists or stations they’ve just launched.

To switch the skill on, just add it as a Flash Briefing through the Alexa app or get it from the page Amazon has published for it. You can also simply give Alexa the command to “enable Today in Music.” Once it’s active, you can listen to music news whenever you want by asking the voice assistant “what’s in the news” or “what’s my Flash Briefing.” Sounds easy enough to activate — there’s no reason not to if you have an Alexa-enabled device and hated yourself for missing Taylor’s new single when it dropped.

Via: TechCrunch

Source: Amazon

3
Sep

Nokia 8 hands-on review


Research Center:
Nokia 8

In the nine months of HMD Global’s existence, it has released nine smartphones under the Nokia brand name. Fans waiting for a Nokia flagship phone, however, have been disappointed — until now. This is the Nokia 8: a high-spec, camera-centric Android smartphone that should do the much-loved brand name proud. In our Nokia 8 hands-on review, we explain why.

HMD Global is the driving force behind new Nokia, as it has struck a licensing agreement to use the iconic brand name for its smartphones. But its success comes from some well-chosen and carefully cultivated partnerships with companies such as Google, Qualcomm, and now Zeiss.

Nokia’s name has always been synonymous with camera phones, with Zeiss often providing the lenses. Now the two are working together again. While this is great news, as Zeiss optics are highly respected, it’s not the main reason to be excited about the Nokia 8’s camera.

Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

No, you need to be excited about the Bothie. It’s a bit of a buzzword name, but don’t let that detract from its promise. This is a camera feature that has been well thought out, pushing the hardware to the max, and we think it could inspire plenty of creativity among video creators.

Bothie refers to the Nokia 8’s ability to take a picture with both the front and the rear camera at the same time, and display the results next to each other in a single image. Both images are taken at 13 megapixels, and both have autofocus, so the quality is the same for each.

Fans waiting for a Nokia flagship phone have been disappointed — until now.

Questioning who would use this? You’re not alone. HMD Global’s product marketing lead Katerina Karellas, who spent the last eight months perfecting the feature, told Digital Trends there was some resistance to the concept at first. But once the team was on board, they went all-out to get it exactly right.

This actually resulted in the phone’s development taking longer than planned, so the Bothie feature operated at its best. The two cameras caused overheating issues at first, but with Qualcomm’s help and the addition of a copper cooling pipe inside the phone’s body, this problem was ultimately solved.

 We like the Bothie. It will appeal to anyone who loves live streaming, reaction videos, and selfies. It’s two photos in one, and can combine a reaction to an event or surroundings. This is the essence of the selfie. How many are of people smiling in front of a landmark, for example? It’s great to see a fun twist on an old classic.

Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

The Nokia 8’s two rear lenses shoot in color and monochrome, and by default, combine the two for a higher quality image. The camera interface is very simple, illustrated with icons that make functionality immediately obvious.

You need to be excited about the Bothie.

Best of all, there are built-in Facebook Live and YouTube Live functions in the camera app. Going “live” is only a few taps away, and broadcasting in Bothie mode is simple. Bothie is ideal for live broadcasts, negating the need for switching between cameras at different intervals.

We took sample Bothies, and some pictures in color, monochrome, and dual-lens mode with the Nokia 8. The results were great, especially in monochrome, which remains a favorite camera feature of ours. Nokia’s camera interface makes everything easy. This continues through the operating system, where only small changes have been made to pure Android 7.1.1 by Nokia, all with Google’s assistance.

If you’re anything like us, you’ll covet the polished copper version seen in some of our pictures. It’s beautiful in real life, with an eye-catching gleam and a high-gloss finish. In-hand comfort is also supreme, with perfectly rounded side panels blending into the 2.5D curved glass over the 5.3-inch screen. Although the screen isn’t large, the phone itself feels quite sizeable, mainly because we’ve become more used to bezel-less designs from Samsung and LG.

Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

Beyond the bells and whistles, we were pleased to see that the flagship specifications are all there to match the Nokia 8’s competitors. The 5.3-inch screen has a 2,560 x 1,440-pixel resolution; the phone is powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 835; there’s 4GB of RAM; and 64GB of base internal storage (plus a MicroSD card slot if you need more space). You’ll find improved range with Bluetooth 5, Gorilla Glass 5 screen protection, and a 3,090mAh battery keeping it all alive.

It’s beautiful in real life, with an eye-catching gleam, and a high-gloss finish.

Bothies aren’t going to be for everyone. There’s no doubt such a function will appeal to a particular type of person, but as live streaming becomes more mainstream, more people will look for ways to have fun with friends and show off their exploits. The Bothie has arrived on the cusp of that movement, and Nokia’s implementation of the dual-image is slick enough for it to really capitalize on it.

Nokia 8 Compared To

LG V30

HTC U11

Moto Z2 Play

HTC One Remix

Huawei Ascend Mate 2

Samsung Galaxy S5 Active

LG G Flex

LG Optimus G Pro

LG Lucid 2

Motorola Droid Razr HD

Sony Xperia P

HTC One S

Motorola Droid Bionic

Motorola Photon 4G

Google Nexus S

Outside of the Bothie, the Nokia 8 doesn’t shout about its speed, ability, classy style, or simplicity of use; but don’t take that to mean it’s not extremely capable. In our short time with the phone, it impressed us. However, if the Bothie isn’t for you, then you may find the phone a little too shy-and-retiring, due to the unwillingness to shout about how good it is.

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