Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Android on everything: the oddest gadgets armed with Google's OS


Android on everything: the oddest gadgets armed with Google's OS

Android is on practically everything. There’s no getting away from the world’s most popular mobile operating system, it’s on phones and tablets from the likes of Samsung, HTC, Sony and many more. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg. What about all the other gadgets and gizmos that run Google’s open source OS? If it’s got a processor and an electrical supply, the chances are someone’s hacked it on there – join us as we take a look at five of the weirdest and most wonderful devices that have been souped up with Android, proving Google’s OS is not just for phones.

The Android-powered microwave

Put your tablets and phones away, and carry around this microwave running all your favourite apps instead. Thanks to the fine folks at Touch Revolution, the company has kitted out a microwave with an Android brain, meaning you can whack on Spotify while you’re waiting for your pizza to reheat up, or set the timer to play your favourite song of choice when your food is ready to go. Perfect.

Exercise even smarter

You might have seen spinning bikes in the gym that have computers attached to them, but they’re not the smartest two wheelers in the gym, especially if you place one of them next to the Peloton exercise bike. This Android 4.1-powered static cycle hit its goal on Kickstarter last month, and packs in apps, games, the web and more on a personal training machine that’s armed with a 21.5-inch 1080p full HD screen. You’ll be able to get exercising with your favourite tunes, ride with friends over video chat, tune into live spinning classes, or even beam down Netflix while you ride. What more could you want?

The ultimate fridge for your recipes

Here’s the perfect companion to your Android microwave: Samsung’s T9000 Four-Door Android-powered fridge packs in Epicurious and Twitter skills, letting you grab recipes where your food is stored or catch up your own news feed while you look for the OJ. There’s also Evernote included on the fridge too, letting you jot down what groceries you need on your fridge, and pick them back up on your phone while you’re out – it’s the ultimate fridge for your smart-connected home, and we just wish it’d arrive sooner as there’s currently no release date in sight.

The smart espresso maker

While it’s only a concept, it’s one that we’d love to see turned into reality. Picture an espresso maker with a smartphone brain that can run all your favourite apps, and even scan QR codes from specially designed coffee capsules. Meet MetaTrend’s Appresso, a concept kitchen gizmo that tells you all about your chosen coffee brew, and will even play a specific tune based on the pod you’ve picked. Let’s see this one turned into reality!

The phone with two screens

We couldn’t leave an Android round-up without at least mentioning a phone, and it’s the Kyocera Echo that takes the oddest handset prize. It’s a dual screen device that lets you run two different full screen apps at the same time or use both as one large screen for all your phone or pseudo-tablet needs. An optimised mode lets each display complement the other: you could run full-screen email on one screen, with a keyboard on the other, for instance. We’ve not seen another device like it since it first came out in 2011, but here’s hoping we could see one soon.

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