New infrared communications channel is 300X more energy efficient than WiFi

January 9, 2018 by  
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ARON – or Augmented-Reality Optical Narrowcasting – is a new communications channel that operates without relying on cellular networks or the Internet , instead depending on infrared light. SureFire , a tactical equipment company, is debuting the technology that could be groundbreaking at the 2018 Consumer Electronics Show . The company says ARON is “300 times more energy efficient than Wi-Fi , and can operate on solar power .” ARON could change the way humans interact with the world, according to SureFire. The new communications system sends data via infrared light waves, using “a patented combination of optical beacons and signals.” Users can send any kind of digital information such as high-definition videos on the optical communications channel – as far away as 400 meters, or around 1,312 feet, in the daytime and 1,200 meters, or around 3,937 feet, at night, according to Engadget . Related: Ericsson’s new mixed-reality platform envisions urban design in “real life” ARON acts as an alternative to radio frequency waves, already used by smartphones , and is said to be secure and fast. The communications platform is as of now unregulated, potentially opening up a lot of opportunities for companies. SureFire’s video shows people utilizing the communications channel for augmented reality on smartphones, glasses, and car windshields. The company is also marketing ARON as useful during a natural disaster – it allows public information to flow even if the power is down, so first responders could reach trapped people, for example. Engadget pointed out it will take a while to deploy ARON on a large scale – someone would have to install sensors on buildings, freeways, or any other object or person needing to send data. They said the technology currently exists in demo form. SureFire’s video says the system can be installed in any car or mobile device, and “is inexpensive to deploy and use.” + ARON Via SureFire/PRNewswire and Engadget Images via Depositphotos and ARON video

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New infrared communications channel is 300X more energy efficient than WiFi

Spin’s new station-less electric bike travels 50 miles on a single charge

January 9, 2018 by  
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San Francisco-based Spin has added its first electric bike to their bike-share collection — and it doesn’t require a station. The company envisions its adoption of electric bikes as an important step towards making urban biking more inviting and accessible. “We see e-bikes as a key enabler of our mission to bring accessible and affordable transport to cities and campuses,” said Spin CEO Derrick Ko. The bike is able to travel up to 50 miles on a single charge while batteries are easily exchangeable for quick recharges. The bike’s movement can be assisted by pedal power and can travel up to 15 MPH with the electric engine’s assistance. Founded in 2016, Spin offers station-less bike sharing in which users can leave their borrowed bike in any responsible place rather than return it to a station. The electric bike, or e-bike, will join hundreds of traditional bikes in the Spin system. The e-bike was designed by Spin and produced by an as-of-yet unrevealed manufacturer, said to be one of the largest in the world. With its latest innovation, Spin hopes to expand bike-sharing in new, inclusive ways. “Electric bicycles, or e-bikes, have been shown to break down barriers to biking including hills, disabilities, age, and distance,” said Zaizhuang Cheng, chief technology officer at Spin. Related: Manta5’s new electric water bike lets you cycle on rivers and lakes Spin currently maintains station-less bike programs at 24 locations in the United States, including cities like Los Angeles, Charlotte, and Washington DC. In Seattle , Spin collaborated with the city’s Department of Transportation to create the nation’s first station-less bike permit system and has provided over a half-million rides since its debut in 2017. The first regions to receive e-bikes in their Spin bike-sharing networks will be places like Miami , University of California San Diego and Rochester Institute of Technology, all of which were early adopters of the original concept. Via TechCrunch Images via Spin

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Spin’s new station-less electric bike travels 50 miles on a single charge

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