How smart is your smartphone?
Thanks to Barcelona’s Mobile World Congress event that took place in March, some of the biggest and best smartphones for business executives of 2015 have been presented to the public.
When choosing a smart phone, you may consider a range of qualities, such as: types of coverage, customer service, apps, overall fees or costs and physical characteristics. Below, you will find a list of new phones that, depending on your specific needs, may offer the feature(s) you’ve been searching for—take a look:
Samsung Galaxy S6
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Similar to the Galaxy Alpha and Galaxy Note 4, the Samsung Galaxy S6 has been produced with both a metal and glass body. Users will be pleased to discover that the new phone also offers a quad-HD screen and a redesigned fingerprint scanner that is quite similar to Apple’s Touch ID.
However, one of the most sought after features the Samsung Galaxy S6 offers is the ability to uninstall or disable unwanted apps. Most smart phones come equipped with apps you don’t necessarily need or want. You now have the advantage of getting rid of said apps on the Samsung Galaxy S6, whereas before you were stuck with the extra clutter.
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LG G Flex 2
Depending on your own personal tastes, the LG G Flex 2 can be purchased in either Platinum Silver or Flamenco Red. Equipped with a curved screen that is 5.5 inches in full-HD, this smart phone offers a wide range of features that includes a 64-bit Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 octa-core chip that supports Ultra HD, 4G LTE and 55MP photography. You also have a choice when it comes to storage, being able to choose between 16 and 32GB. There is a 13MP rear camera with OIS+ and Laser Auto Focus, as well as a 2.1 MP front camera.
HTC One M9
Compared to its predecessor—the M8—the M9’s design is quite similar. The new model is made with a matching metal block and uses the curved shape and hairline finish, just like the previous version. However, updated features include a scratch-resistant coating, machine drilled buttons and a sapphire glass lens that can be found over the back camera. The power button of the One M9 is on the side of the phone instead of the top; the screen is the same—5 inches and full HD.
The One M9 does offer a new 20-megapixel rear facing camera, meaning that the new device can record video in 4K resolution and comes equipped with a dynamic exposure algorithm to imitate the human eye. The front camera has a 4-megapixel resolution. The newest feature, HTC Connect, conveniently allows users to send audio to wireless speakers and support multi-room.
Confirmed for a late 2015 release, there’s not much information that has been released regarding this new smart phone—possible features and designs are just being speculated. However, the OnePlus Two will run the brand-new OxygenOS. Therefore, the phone will be open and customizable. Further benefits of this feature include better localization, faster updates and integration between hardware, software and the cloud will be much easier.
In terms of design, this phone is expected to be the same size as the OnePlus One—5.5 inches. However, it’s noted that the resolution could be increased to 2k.
The Latest iPhone
It’s unknown whether the latest iPhone will be the iPhone 7, the iPhone 6S or the iPhone 6C. Regardless of the fact—it’s coming! Due to Apple’s history, it’s believed that the latest iPhone won’t technically be unveiled until September, but there have still been plenty of rumors and speculation floating around the phone’s design and features.
For starters, because there was such a contrast between the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus and the iPhone 5S, significant design changes aren’t overly expected. Therefore, the latest iPhone will most likely have a 4.7 inch screen. Of course, if Apple produces an iPhone 7 Plus, then the screen could be as large as 5.5 inches. As well, color options for the new smart phone should include silver, gold and slate grey. However, according to MacX.cn, Apple’s next iPhone could potentially have a 5 inch, OLED display screen with a 400ppi resolution.
It’s believed that Apple has been working with stronger sapphire glass and more durable liquid metal materials, meaning the iPhone could be both lighter and more durable. The latest iPhone could also have a faster processor, as well as camera improvements, a better battery life and a wireless charging feature.
Dr Peng Wei: Designing the Future of Autonomous Aircraft
Air traffic is expected to double by 2037. According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA), the world will need 37,000+ new passenger and freight aircraft, and more than half a million new pilots—unless we come up with another solution. Right now, a George Washington University School of Engineering and Applied Science professor, Dr Peng Wei, is starting to research autonomous electric aircraft design.
NASA will fund the research, which will study how to minimise risks for electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL). As Airbus states: ‘Autonomous technologies also have the potential to improve air traffic management, enhance sustainability performance and further improve aircraft safety’.
Who is Dr Wei?
An assistant professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Dr Wei has researched aircraft control, optimisation, and AI and ML applications in aviation. Over the next three years, he’ll lead the US$2.5mn NASA grant project in collaboration with researchers from Vanderbilt, the University of Texas at Austin, and MIT’s Lincoln Lab.
Why is His Research Important?
Even though the wide adoption of self-piloting cars, much less aircraft, is still far down the road, technologies that Dr Wei and his colleagues are researching will form the commercial transport of the future. But aviation manufacturers, in order to produce autonomous aircraft, will have to meet extremely high safety standards.
‘The key challenge for self-piloting capabilities is how the system reacts to unforeseen events’, said Arne Stoschek, Wayfinder Project Executive at Acubed. ‘That’s the big jump from automated to autonomous’. In the air, AI-piloted aircraft will have to manoeuvre around adverse weather conditions, such as wind and storms, and other high-altitude risks, such as GPS hacking, cyberattacks, and aircraft degradation. And the stakes are high.
‘If a machine learning algorithm makes a mistake in Facebook, TikTok, Netflix —that doesn't matter too much because I was just recommended a video or movie I don't like’, Dr Wei said. ‘But if a machine learning algorithm mistake happens in a safety-critical application, such as aviation or in autonomous driving, people may have accidents. There may be fatal results’.
What Are His Other Projects?
In addition to the new NASA research, Dr Wei has been awarded three other grants to pursue AI-piloted aircraft:
- A 2-year grant from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in conjunction with West Virginia University and Honeywell Aerospace to investigate “learning-based” aviation systems
- A six-month SBIR Phase I NASA award with Intelligent Automation to mitigate airspace congestion at vertiports—the electric craft version of airports.
- A 1-year collaborative grant with the University of Virginia and George Mason University from the Virginia Commonwealth Cyber Initiative (CCI) to develop anti-cyber attack technologies and aviation video systems
Research like NASA and Dr Wei’s three-year programme will help improve how AI reacts and adapts to challenging air conditions. In coming years, autonomous aircraft will likely take off slowly, starting with small package delivery, then upgraded drones, and finally commercialised aircraft. But congestion issues will worsen until autonomous aircraft are the best alternative.
According to BBC Future, by 2030, commuters will spend nearly 100 hours a year in Los Angeles and Moscow traffic jams, and 43 cities will be home to more than 10 million people. The final verdict? Bring on the AI-operated transit.