Valve Steam Machines: Specs, Availability and Pricing


The much awaited Valve Steam Machines are now released in the market. These machines are designed to compete with the most popular gaming consoles such as PlayStation, Xbox, and other media streaming devices with built-in gaming capabilities such as the Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, and many more.

According to the latest hardware news, the first three Valve Machines are created by well-known companies such as Alienware, Cyberpower, and ZOTAC and now being sold for $450 for the basic up to a whooping $1499 for the highest-end gaming machine. I know you can avail a separate Valve Steam Controller and Valve Steam Link sold for extra $49.99 each. By looking at the Valve machine it seems these gaming systems are using the latest high-end low profile graphics card.

In terms of technical specifications there are basic configurations with an Intel i3 processor, 2GB of Graphics processing power, 4GB of RAM, 500GB to 1TB of Hard Drive and high-end settings comes with double processing power as it is equipped with Intel latest i7 CPU, 8GB of RAM, and 2TB of HDD.

To give you some clarifications, these Steam Machines are powered by computer peripherals that runs under Valve Steam Linux-based Operating System and will utilized their own gaming controller. On the other hand, what does the Steam Link hardware do – it was designed to allow current Steam gamers to access different games across their home network. Aside from playing games directly from the console using your HDTV, you can as well stream games for your PC such as games that are not yet available originally for the Steam OS.

The games that will be included during the launch are Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, Rust, Half-Life 2, Portal 2, Borderlands 2, BioShock Infinite, and Baldur’s Gate II: Enhanced Edition.

Valve explains more :

Steam Machines are stand-alone devices that let you enjoy the Steam gaming experience in one box, providing gamers with a host of hardware devices at a variety of price points and configurations. Customize a gaming experience that best suits your needs while choosing from Steam’s thousands of games, user-generated content, and more from any room in the home.

Sony Acquires SoftKinetic’s 3D Sensing Technology

Sony, one of the leading makers of high tech gadgets such as the Xperia smartphones line-up, Sony HDTVs, tablets, laptops, advanced digital camera, super line-up of DSLR cameras, and many more has announced its latest accomplishment, which is the acquisition of one of the emerging technologies called 3D sensing computer vision technology from Softkinetic, which include gesture tracking, Kinect-style depth cameras, and CMOS depth chips.

For your information, Softkinetic is the company responsible for the development of “ToF” or time-of-flight range image sensor technology. What this technology does – it measures distance between the sensor and the tangible object light source using the flight time delay of light.

As far as I know, the 3D sensing technology can also be used on virtual reality headgears, to inform the wearer of the vr headset when he is approaching, or handling to the real-world objects. I’m also aware that this kind of technology is used also in 3D printing where they used Intel RealSense 3D scanner to get a detailed view of the object they are trying to replicate or print.

Sony VR Headset

The SoftKinetic is a Belgium-based company founded way back 2007, with their longtime chief executive Michel Tombroff and 77 employees. The company’s primary target is the development and licensing of sensors, software, and sensor modules.

They have already collaborated with Sony’s Gaming division before, by incorporating 3D gesture recognition middleware to different PS4 popular game titles. SoftKinetic is also said to worked with Makerbot, a trusted and reputable named in the 3D printing industry creating different high-end 3D printers and 3D scanning machines.

“We are very excited to be part of Sony, the world’s largest sensor manufacturer,” Tombroff said. “Sony is the perfect partner for Softkinetic, and we look forward to leverage Sony’s formidable assets to further drive the 3D vision market.”

The acquisition made of Sony aims of improving and developing next gen image sensors for different applications, not just for imaging field.

SoftKinetic Time of Flight

Sony did explain during a press release today a little more about the time-of-flight technology.

Tokyo, Japan – Sony Corporation (“Sony”) is announcing that it has completed the acquisition of Softkinetic Systems S.A. (“Softkinetic”), after reaching an agreement with the company and its major shareholders.

ToF is a method for resolving the distance to an object. ToF distance measurement pixels, which are laid on top of the sensor in two dimensions, measure the flight time (delay) it takes for light to leave the light source, reflect off the object, and return to the image sensor.

iKlips Lightning Flash Drive for Apple Devices


We can’t deny the fact that Apple devices such as iPhone and iPad are elegant, fast and considered one of the best stylish gadgets you can have these days. But there is only one thing that bothers me, and that’s the amount of storage it can handle as we all know these iOS devices doesn’t have external memory and not everyone of us can afford the ones with largest capacities such as 64GB and 128GB. So what could be the possible solution to this? The answer is by using a flash drive dedicated for these particular brands of smartphones.

Increase iOS Storage using iKlips

iKlips is a unique flash drive designed by Adam Elements specifically for iOS devices such as iPhone and iPad that aims to adds storage space to your device similar to what the popular SanDisk iXpand flash drive with lightning connector does. There is no other way to add memory to your Apple devices like tweaking, or any kind of software that is the reason these types of flash drives are created to solve that common problem by users of the lowest storage variants of iOS devices.

iKlips comes with a lightning connector and it can deliver read and write speeds of up to 14/8 MB per second and doubles as a standard USB thumb drive with USB 3.0 connector at the other end with a promising transfer rates of 140/20 MB per second.

This dual-interface USB device is created using an ultra-high-speed MLC flash memory and it is fully compatible with iOS devices that have lightning port, and even desktop PC, laptop with standard USB ports. It comes with a free companion app that you can used to manage your files such as photos and videos using your iPhone 5, iPhone 6, iPad 4, iPad Pro, and many more.


By using this compact flash drive, you will no longer experience your device running on low memory. Just back-up your other files directly to the drive and if you want to watch large movies or watch full TV episodes, you can simple stream directly to the iKlips. You can also open files such as documents, music files, and view photos directly to that external storage device.

This time I would suggest that you get the largest capacity of iKlips lightning flash drive, especially if you have only 16GB or 32GB on your Apple device to maximize the use of the thumb drive. You can buy this iOS companion flash drive for only $49 for the 16GB, $69 for the 32GB, $89 for the 64GB and $169 for the 128GB through quality Adam Elements distributors worldwide.

The iKlips iOS flash drive was initially announced via a crowdfunding website named Indiegogo and the said project expected to raise a whooping $50,000 funds to make the jump into production and they’ve successfully did it with 424% funded in April 2015.

General Manager of Adam Elements, Alan Chang explains:

“iKlips was inspired by the idea of connecting technology and people. iKlips is extra durable and reliable, its metal frame will not let the device bend and elastic silicone connector caps will protect it from damage in case it is dropped. Design is slim and smooth, with a few different colors to choose from. It is an accessory made to look good and function well with other iOS devices.

We submitted the concept to Red Dot for review and iKlips recieved a Red Dot Award for product design. Now we are submitting iKlips to you, the people who will benefit from using it every day and especially in those situations in which internet access is going to likely to let you down.”

Watch iKlips’ promotional video below

Ford’s Smartwatch App Enables Basic Control of Electric Car


I have never imagined that it will be possible for a car owner to control his or her car remotely by just using a smartwatch. I thought smartwatch and other wearable devices are only used for checking important notifications such as text messages, missed calls, social media status, and to track fitness activities such as the number of steps taken, running, sleeping hours, calories burnt, heartbeat count and so on for the smartband line-up.

Well, in my opinion this is one of the greatest innovations for the car industry, to be specific Ford who has just announced their dedicated MyFord mobile smartwatch app that can be installed on selected wearable gadgets such as Apple Watch and other Android Wear compatible devices.

If you are active on automotive forums such as Volvo and Hyundai, I’m sure you have already read in the past when they also tried this kind of technology. Take note driving the car is not included on this remote feature using your smartwatch, basically it only include unlocking/locking your car, check its current battery status, check where you have parked and etc.

In addition, this new technology for Ford vehicles only supports the hybrid ones or the electric-powered vehicles. So if you have older versions or car models then this app will not work as you desire.

According to David Hatton, Ford manager, Connected Vehicles and Services, “The app gives drivers the ability to quickly check important data like available range before leaving on a journey – without having to access the mobile application on their smartphone. The app can also notify users when their car is fully charged, helping a driver be courteous to other electric vehicle owners so they can free up the charging spot or avoid fees applied at some charging stations when you overrun your time after the charge is complete.”

Latest 2015 Apple TV Comes with Siri Voice Control

apple tv 2015

What’s New with the Apple TV 2015?

Apple has revealed its latest Apple TV 2015 with lots of new awesome features including Siri powered remote control, built-in applications and games, and many more. The new Apple TV has also upgraded hardware, now using Apple 64-bit A8 chip for a blazing fast performance with 802.11ac Wi-Fi with MiMo, IR receiver, Bluetooth 4.0, Ethernet and HDMI ports.

It is also mentioned that users can play games aside from the custom content apps installed on the hardware.

Latest Apple TV runs tvOS Operating System

According to the latest Apple news, the new Apple TV will run using their latest tvOS operating system, which is based on Apple’s iOS, meaning developers can really provide third party content such as applications and games specifically for this device when they get the access for the tvOS SDK via Xcode beta.

In addition, the tvOS is also said to support one of the key features of iOS technologies called Metal that will provide highly detailed graphics, more stunning visual effects and it will come with a Game Center for a more enjoyable and exciting experience as you will be able to play and share games with your friends.

Apple TV Intelligent Remote Control Powered by Siri

Another innovation you will see on the Apple TV 2015 is the voice recognition using its very popular Siri integrated on the remote control, meaning you can scan channels, search for apps and games using your voice and it can display the needed information right on the screen.

For example, you want to watch the latest episode of the Game of Thrones, or Flash new episodes. You can just say “Game of Thrones latest episode” and etc. The smart TV will search through iTunes and even from Netflix, Hulu, HBO and Showtime, to get the best possible match based from your query or request.

Play Games Directly using Apple TV and Siri Remote Control

Not to mention, the Siri-powered remote also comes with gyroscope and accelerometer and is said that you can play games directly on the TV without setting any game consoles using just the Apple TV and Siri remote which has a glass surface on top with a jam packed 3 months battery life for a single charge. Recharging the remote is done through a built-in Lightning connector, so it seems powerbank can also be used on the remote.

There are also built-in games such as Guitar Hero, Shadowmatic, Crossy Road, Beat Sports by Activision.

“There has been so much innovation in entertainment and programming through iOS apps, we want to bring that same excitement to the television,” said Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services. “Apps make the TV experience even more compelling for viewers and we think apps represent the future of TV.”

Pricing and Availability

The all-new Apple TV is available in 32GB and 64GB variants with a price tag of $149 and $199 and will hit more than 80 countries starting next month. The company will continue selling the previous model for $69 only.

Raspberry Pi Gets Dedicated Hard Drive called PiDrive from WD


Western Digital has revealed its newest storage device dedicated for Raspberry Pi system, dubbed as WD 1TB PiDrive Kit.

Western Digital explains a little more :

“Hackers and makers, rejoice… your favorite little DIY computer has just been given a major storage upgrade! The WD PiDrive Kit instantly expands the HDD storage on your Raspberry Pi to a full 1 TB so you can create (and save) to your heart’s content.”

For your information, Raspberry Pi is a mini pc or nano computer that utilizes memory cards as their external storage device instead of internal bulky hard drives by desktop PCs.These computer systems are very popular and powerful, despite of its size which is about the same size of a credit card.

As far as I know, Raspberry Pi 2 is the latest of its line-up featuring a quad-core ARMv7 processor with clock speed of 900MHz, 1GB of RAM, with official Window 10 operating system dedicated. Raspberry Pi became popular because there are many hobbyist, enthusiasts, and tech savvy that was able to create high tech DIY projects and automated systems by using Raspberry Pi models,

Aside from its core specifications, you can also find several add-ons or board extensions online that will further improve the capabilities and performance of your project Raspberry Pi. These includes HD display kit, 3D printer controller, Interruptible power supply, optical character recognition, VGA adapter, and many more just to mentioned a few.

Going back to our main topic, the Western Digital PiDrive 1TB is the very first storage device design for its class that comes with a 4GB microSD card that you can used to install the operating system that you prefer, aside from the original microSD card that you get when you buy a bundle Raspberry Pi online or through your local store.

In addition, the WD PiDrive also comes with a special USB 3.0 interface cable that’s designed to connect with USB port of the Raspberry Pi, which eliminates the need for an external hub. This allows usage of only a single cable to connect the hard drive to the computer and to power both devices.

The Western Digital PiDrive is now available for $80 and it is compatible with the Raspberry Pi Model B+ and the Raspberry Pi 2 Model B.