IT Pro is supported by its audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more

DEMO 09: Emerging tech hardware highs

Innovative hardware creations were showcased at this week’s DEMO 09 show in the US.

While the biannual DEMO emerging technology conference usually features a smorgasbord of software innovation, an intriguing trio of hardware offerings also took centre stage in Palm Desert, California, this time around.

Perhaps most novel was a new type of reflective display technology called Mirasol, produced by Qualcomm MEMS Technology, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the eponymous telecommunications giant.

Based on bio mimicry in this case the reflective scales of a butterfly's wings Mirasol displays require no backlight and require roughly 40 per cent less power than is needed for traditional LCD displays. Plus, unlike LCDs, Mirasol displays retain their last image even after electrons stop flowing. Currently available in black-and-white versions for overseas markets, a colour version of the mobile-phone-sized screen should be ready by year's end.

Also promising is Always Innovating's Touch Book, which switches instantly between being a standard Linux netbook and a touch screen tablet computer. That's not so new, of course witness the plethora of tablet pieces that came out four years ago but the new rock-bottom price point certainly is novel: $299 for the touch screen device alone and $399 for the device plus it detachable keyboard.

Need a digital photo frame? The screen, which is magnetic, can stick to any metal surface, including a refrigerator. Expect the Touch Book to ship sometime this spring.

The final hardware item of DEMO at first blush looks like another "me-too" networked video camera. Technically, Avaak's Vue Personal Video Network is exactly that. But several elegant design features, plus astoundingly simple set-up that doesn't even require a computer, helps it elbow its way to the front of the pack.

The starter kit for $299 comes with a wireless gateway device, two tiny cameras, and a handful of round metal mounts to which each camera's curved, magnetised back latches. Additional cameras are $99; up to 50 of them can network through a single gateway.

Featured Resources

The state of Salesforce: Future of business

Three articles that look forward into the changing state of Salesforce and the future of business

Free Download

The mighty struggle to migrate SAP to the cloud may be over

A simplified and unified approach to delivering Enterprise Transformation in the cloud

Free Download

The business value of the transformative mainframe

Modernising on the mainframe

Free Download

The Total Economic Impact™ Of IBM FlashSystem

Cost savings and business benefits enabled by FlashSystem

Free Download

Most Popular

Cyber attack on software supplier causes "major outage" across the NHS
cyber attacks

Cyber attack on software supplier causes "major outage" across the NHS

8 Aug 2022
Why convenience is the biggest threat to your security
Sponsored

Why convenience is the biggest threat to your security

8 Aug 2022
How to boot Windows 11 in Safe Mode
Microsoft Windows

How to boot Windows 11 in Safe Mode

29 Jul 2022