These leather-bound power banks were designed to help increase the lifetime of your phone’s battery

Apple made the headlines in 2019 when news leaked that the company was purposely making their older iPhones slower ‘to help conserve their batteries’. While they did have to end up paying a $500 million settlement after a major lawsuit, there’s a point to be made about phone batteries… especially lithium-ion ones. Batteries don’t last forever. All batteries eventually degrade, and charging them only accelerates their degradation. Sounds weird, doesn’t it? Here’s an explanation. Every battery comes with a limited number of ‘charging cycles’ beyond which the battery degrades and needs to be replaced. Over or undercharging your battery can cause it to degrade faster, and those ‘fast chargers’ are notorious for promising fast charging cycles, while conveniently hiding the fact that they also massively degrade your phone’s battery. That’s where the CLOU steps in.

Styled like a tiny little hip-flask, the CLOU is a miniature power-bank that charges your phone ‘the right way’. It does so by ensuring your battery level never goes below 20% or above 80%. This sweet-spot is perfect for your phone’s battery, allowing it to last longer, both during the day as well as in the long run. The CLOU comes with a compact form that plugs into the base of your phone almost like a little dongle. Its internal chipset helps it ‘intelligently charge your phone’, automatically starting or stopping a charging cycle to ensure your battery remains healthy.

Just plug the CLOU in and it does the rest for you… the 2,400 mAh power-bank automatically determines whether your phone needs to be charged. It reads your battery status as well as its temperature to determine when to supply power to it, extending your battery’s lifespan by more than doubling it. The CLOU comes with the option of a lightning port as well as a USB-C port and a MicroUSB port, allowing it to work with all Android and iOS phones. Aside from working as a power-bank, the CLOU works as an intermediary device with wired chargers too. Instead of plugging your charger directly into your phone, plug it into CLOU’s input instead while it’s connected to your phone. This basically allows the CLOU to act as a ‘power broker’, allowing or cutting power delivery based on what’s best for your phone’s overall battery. Ideally, the CLOU ensures your battery never crosses 80%, but just in case you’re in a bit of a hurry or you’ve got a long day ahead of you, you can circumvent its protective charging protocol and just juice your battery to 100% by simply pressing the power button on the center of the CLOU.

Going above and beyond what most regular power-banks do, the CLOU actually increases your battery and your phone’s lifespan. While most regular power banks bring your battery’s charging cycles down to just 350-500 (so you begin seeing battery degradation in less than a year), CLOU pushes it up to approximately 900-1200 cycles, virtually tripling its lifespan so your ‘older’ smartphone runs as good as a new one.

Designed to be compact enough so you can carry it with you wherever you go, the CLOU is just about as wide as the average smartphone, making it easy to slide right into your pocket as you step out or travel.

Moreover, its aluminum and Danish-leather design is absolutely pleasing to the eye, and goes really well with most phones, especially if you’ve also got a complementing leather case on your phone too… and if you don’t have one, just grab your CLOU as a super early bird backer and the company will ship a complimentary leather case, a charging cable, and even a free screen protector along with your handy, classy, battery-saving smart power-bank!

Designer: Frederick Rickmann MDS

Click Here to Buy Now: $79. Hurry, only 176/200 left!

Click Here to Buy Now: $79. Hurry, only 176/200 left!

Royole’s flexible display technology could one day turn your car’s glove box into an interactive dashboard

Royole Flexible Display Car Dashboard

The company has very rapidly realized it isn’t in the foldable phones business… it’s in the foldable everything business.

Images have surfaced on the internet of a rather interesting concept employing Royole‘s flexible display technology. Created by Zhiyuan Xing, a designer based out of Shenzhen, the Flexible Car Dashboard poses an interesting hot-take – what if instead of doors on a glove compartment, you just had a display that bent open like a curtain? The Flexible Car Dashboard explores that very possibility, creating an interactive display in an area that would otherwise be a utilitarian panel of knobs and compartments.

Royole Flexible Display Car Dashboard

The panel is a long, vertical display that folds open from the top as well as the bottom, revealing storage areas and charging spots underneath. The display sits in place via magnetic closures that allow it to snap shut, and when you want to access the space underneath, unfold it as if you were turning a page or lifting the edge of a carpet. The GIF above should really help demonstrate how incredibly handy and innovative it is.

Royole Flexible Display Car Dashboard

Joined to the car’s dashboard at the center, the display opens both ways. The upper part has a tray-style design, letting you keep your phones in it (potentially even being able to wirelessly charge them or UV sanitize them), while the lower part is almost like a box to dump other items you need but are less likely to use (charging cables, AirTag, earphones, power bank, etc).

Royole Flexible Display Car Dashboard

Royole Flexible Display Car Dashboard

A crucial part of the display’s design is its lip, which lets you easily get a grip and open it outwards. The display comes mounted on a thick layer of some kind of elastomer, giving it some resistance (so you don’t damage it by tugging too hard), while a magnetic closure system allows the flap to satisfyingly snap shut. The display even knows when to switch off when you’re bending it, helping protect it against any accidental damage. It switches back on when shut, displaying the screen where it last left off.

Royole Flexible Display Car Dashboard

Royole Flexible Display Car Dashboard

Royole Flexible Display Car Dashboard

What this concept presents is something rather remarkable, and a fresh design direction from Royole, which hasn’t really seen much success in the doldrums that is the folding phone industry. A flexible dashboard display, however, would be a great way to expand its catalog while proposing something that isn’t really a novelty, but instead is a very interesting feature. The area where the Royole Flexible Car Dashboard would sit is essentially purely functional – currently occupied by a radio (which people hardly use), AC air vents (which could easily be relocated), and perhaps a slot for a car charger. The Flexible Car Dashboard proposes we use that space for something better, something more cutting-edge with upcoming cars. Designed as a dashboard that could easily see itself integrated into smart-cars or semi-autonomous cars, it gives you a large sprawling screen that’s ideal for accessing the car’s smart features like the Map, Music Player, or other in-car controls. Fold it over and you’ve got the benefit of storage too! Storage, might I add, that would escape the sight of most thieves!

Designer: Zhiyuan Xing

Royole Flexible Display Car Dashboard

Royole Flexible Display Car Dashboard

Unilever is working on a 100% recyclable toothpaste tube… here’s what it means for the environment

Unilever 100% Recyclable Toothpaste Tube

The Multi-national FMCG giant plans to convert its entire global toothpaste portfolio to recyclable tubes by 2025, starting with France and India – its two largest markets.

The problem with toothpaste is that there’s hardly any socially acceptable alternative to it. Sure, you could ditch bottled water and straws in a bid to save the environment. You could swear off Coca-Cola *wink-wink Ronaldo* because it’s the world’s biggest plastics polluter. You could even ditch plastic toothbrushes for recycled/bamboo ones… but how do you avoid toothpaste? There isn’t really a concrete, well-accepted alternative to it, and given how toothpaste is something the entire world uses at least once every day, it just results in thousands of tonnes of waste every year in the form of discarded toothpaste tubes. (1.5 billion tubes each year globally, according to some reports)

Unilever seems to be taking heed of this burgeoning waste problem, and after 4 years of research and development, is launching their first entirely recyclable toothpaste tube. Traditionally, toothpaste tubes have been made out of plastic, with an inner aluminum lining, to give it flexibility while keeping it food-safe and allowing it to have a higher shelf life. Unilever’s latest toothpaste tube will be made almost entirely out of HDPE – one of the most recyclable plastics there is. “It will also be the thinnest plastic material available on the toothpaste market at 220-microns, which will reduce the amount of plastic needed for each tube. To encourage wider industry change, the innovation will be made available for other companies to adopt”, mentions Unilever’s website.

Unilever 100% Recyclable Toothpaste Tube

Recycling HDPE is rather simple and can (on a basic level) even be done by consumers. However, Unilever’s approach will involve a much more robust supply and recycling chain. Not only are the tubes designed to be recyclable, but Unilever also claims it is working with multiple global recycling organizations to help ensure that the new tubes are collected and recycled; starting with France, where consumers can put the new tubes in their home recycling bin ready to be collected and turned into new products. The pilot project will begin with France, being implemented with Unilever’s oral-care brand Signal, and will make its way to India by the end of the year with Pepsodent and CloseUp, the company’s India-based brands. Samir Singh, Executive Vice President, Global Skin Cleansing and Oral Care said that Unilever will commit to ensuring that Unilever’s entire toothpaste portfolio shifts to the recyclable tubes by 2025.

Designer: Unilever

Similar Innovations

This tube of ‘Coolpaste’ comes in a paper tube, instead of the traditional plastic tube + paper box.

This unique marbled speaker’s made from non-recyclable plastic waste.

7 Award-Winning bicycles and travel-gear from iF Design Award’s global design community

The iF Design Award has been consistently hand-picking the best, most innovative designs since 1953, honoring top-class achievements in categories spanning Product Design, Communication Design, Packaging, Service Design, Architecture, Interior Architecture, and UI and UX for 67 years in a row. The entire iF Design Award program saw as many as 10,000 submissions this year, which were evaluated by 98 international design experts from 21 countries, on the iF Jury.

Just this year alone, 1,744 designs received the iF Design Award for their creative accomplishments across various categories, while an additional 75 designs went on to win the highly-coveted iF gold award for their outstanding work. The iF Design Award always culminates in a grand ceremony in Berlin, although owing to the pandemic and global travel restrictions, award-winning products and projects this year are being celebrated digitally with an international content campaign encapsulated by the slogan “The CreatiFe Power of Design” in cooperation with renowned design platforms and seven renowned design museums.

Over the course of the next few months, Yanko Design will be curating and featuring winning designs from this year’s program too – we’ve hand-picked seven award-winning designs from the Bicycling category below! All the iF Design Award winners can also be viewed on the newly-launched iF Design App that gives you access to a grand database of award-winning design projects and their creators, right at your fingertips!

To view all these designs and many more, visit the website of the iF DESIGN AWARD.

Click Here to download the brand new iF Design App – a new experience in discovering outstanding designs

Award-Winning Bicycles and Travel-gear from the iF Design Award 2021

Halfway Folding Bicycle by Giant Co. Ltd. (iF gold award Winner)

The iF gold award-winning Halfway bicycle solves every commuter’s biggest headache – carrying their cycle on public transit or into buildings. Its unique folding mechanism allows the entire bicycle to pack up into a hand-pulled strolley that you can easily wheel around with you. The bicycle even comes with its own front-basket for storing your bag while cycling, and caster-wheels on the basket allow the cycle to be rolled around when completely folded! “The term Halfway refers to the folding system of the bicycle – utilizing a single-sided fork and chain-stay which equates to a more compact enclosure size. The auto-lock system provides fewer steps for folding and introduces a new level of safety while riding”, mentions the Chinese design studio and creator behind the Halfway, Giant Co. Ltd.

Litelok Go Flexi-U by Prof. Neil Barron for LITELOK

Litelok Go Flexi-U is the world’s first insurance-rated, flexible U-lock for bikes. Unlike conventional U-locks that come with a rigid design, the Go Flexi-U sports a flexible design that can easily wrap around poles, fences, and other objects. It matches the strength and durability of traditional U-locks while being incredibly lightweight (641 grams). Moreover, it easily straps to your bike’s frame, making it rather easy to carry around with you as you ride!

Gmigo One by Baron Design Studio and Tianjin Jidian Road Technology Co. Ltd.

Designed to be a smart, modular scooter for urban commuting, the Gmigo One comes with a shape-shifting design that allows you to alternate between sitting and standing scooter designs just by plugging in different modules into the scooter’s unique frontal frame. The minimal design and Stormtrooper color-way forms a perfect foreground against the urban backdrop, and the small wheels are perfect for in-city commute. The scooter’s easily detachable hub makes the folded volume smaller and easy to store, and the magnesium alloy die-cast body helps dramatically reduce the scooter’s overall weight.

Canyon Fix 3-in-1 Minitool by Canyon Bicycles

Don’t let its unseemingly tiny design fool you, Canyon’s Fix 3-in-1 tool houses a veritable bicycle-fixing tool-shop in a compact yet extremely versatile form factor. Combining 3 tools into 1 small, light mini-tool, it features a ratchet with 4 double-sided bits, a Dynaplug® tool to fix punctures on tubeless tires, and a CO2 inflator to pump up flats. With a CNC-milled aluminum body, it weighs just 45g yet can deliver up to 30 Nm of torque, helping you pull apart your cycle and fix it together with no fuss. Plus, it’s about the size of your finger, so you can easily stash it anywhere while riding.

Canyon Speedmax by Artefakt Design for Canyon Bicycles

From the makers of the 3-in-1 minitool also comes the Speedmax, an incredibly capable bike designed to dominate triathlons. By providing more configuration options, optimized aerodynamics, even more innovative integration solutions, and storage spaces with a more streamlined design, the bike was built to give the triathlete every possible performance advantage. Canyon also worked hand-in-hand with Artefakt, a German-based design studio that played an instrumental role in developing the Speedmax series ever since its debut in 2010.

Thule RoundTrip Bike Duffel by Thule Group

Designed by the popular Swiss-based outdoor and transportation gear company, the Thule RoundTrip Bike Duffel is nothing short of a bike-gear-locker that you can carry with you. Designed on the format of popular camera-gear bags, the RoundTrip Bike Duffel comes purpose-built for dedicated cyclists, with a structured, organized interior that provides dedicated storage spaces for clothes, accessories, and EDC. Designed with individual cell pockets, tarpaulin-lined zippered pockets and a toolbox structure to easily see and access items, the Thule RoundTrip Bike Duffel is the perfect travel companion as you’re cycling, allowing you to easily access clothes, bike-repairing gear, or even your camera equipment when you’re outdoors!

FORE_Bicycle by GK Kyoto Inc. and GK Design Soken Hiroshima Inc.

Envisioned as a bicycle that’s designed for everyone, the FORE_Bicycle takes on the format of a scooter, with a minimal U-shaped frame that lets even women ride it while wearing skirts. The bike comes with a nude silver aesthetic that feels natural and allows it to easily blend into environments and boasts of a unique chainless format that makes it easier to maintain. The chainless design also eliminates the stress of getting grease on your clothes, or worse, getting your clothes caught in the chainlinks. By adopting this new foolproof format, the FORE_Bicycle improves the cycling experience, making it safer and much more hassle-free for everyone who rides it!

To view all these designs and many more, visit the website of the iF DESIGN AWARD.

UX Design for Pets? This company is creating minimally-designed functional gear for your furry friends

Your pet probably couldn’t tell a regular chair from a Herman Miller, but there’s a case to be made around designing better pet products. There’s a long-standing adage that form follows function, but good design is all about emotion too. A well-designed pet product doesn’t just functionally serve the pet’s needs, its aesthetics also keep the owner happy, creating a user experience that takes everyone into account. As they say, good design benefits everybody. Consider that the ethos of TOMO, an up-and-coming pet-gear brand fueled by great design.

TOMO gives pet-gear the upgrade it’s always needed, with minimalist aesthetics and beautifully engineered designs backed by high-quality materials. Putting basic plaid collars and harnesses with those fiddly carabiner clips in the rear-view mirror, TOMO’s pet gear comes in beautiful matte black, from leash to collar to harness, and features a unique, robust metal clasp that’s minimal, durable, and easy to secure in a matter of seconds. All the products look like they’re a part of a wonderful ecosystem (unlike current pet-gear where the leash, collar, and dog-tag look different because they were all bought separately. The entire ecosystem of products draws a balance between functionality, comfort, and aesthetics, giving pet-gear a modern upgrade and making them complement each other when worn together, like a well-designed suit.

The leash attaches to either the dog collar or the harness using a specially-designed patent-pending latch. Designed to be quick, easy, and secure, the metal latch locks/unlocks intuitively and is designed to withstand immense force, allowing it to easily take on heavy tugs and pulls from “rambunctious” dogs. The human-end of the leash sports a circular latch too, allowing you to easily tether your pet to a pole or fence when needed. TOMO’s collars come with an adjustable design and in 4 sizes, while the harnesses come in 6 sizes to suit all breeds of dogs. Aside from making your pooch look dapper, they’re designed to be comfortable too, making both pet and owner happy.

Thoughtfully designed to encompass the entire pet-walking experience, TOMO’s product ecosystem also includes a ‘silent dog tag’ and a dispenser for waste-bags. The silent dog tag sits on the dog-collar like a badge instead of hanging from it, and comes with a minimal design that features the dog’s name and a contact number. The waste-bag dispenser comes with a matching minimal design too, and can attach to the leash, allowing you to pull out the plastic bags after your dog’s done its business. The products are designed to complement each other, looking like they belong together… and they even come coated with a washable, waterproof, scuff-resistant, and odor-resistant BioThane© coating, so even if your dog’s the mud-loving kind, their gear remains looking stylish no matter what!

Designers: Brandon Lopez & Eric Renard

Click Here to Buy Now: $60 $100 (40% off). Hurry, only 6/35 left!

TOMO – Easy Connect Dog Gear

TOMO is a minimally designed, easy-to-connect, leash, collar, and harness set that will make your life easier and your dog more stylish.

Features & Benefits

Complete Ecosystem – TOMO includes a harness, leash and collar that function in a very systematic way. The signature latch system is unique and secures your pet across TOMO products.

Collar – The cleverly designed Collar removes the need of struggling with buckles or plastic clips. The TOMO Collar clips in swiftly around the neck and is easy to remove as well.

Even the leash attaches to the collar in one swift motion. The leash clip is specifically designed to stay at the back of the body, making it accessible.

Name tag is designed to fit perfectly flush against your dog’s collar without making a sound.

Leash to Harness – The harness sports the TOMO clip, allowing you to easily move the leash from the collar to the harness.

Leash is tangle-resistant, washable, and soft to the touch. Minimal design, maximum convenience.

Handle – Designed in a way that won’t you have to unclip it, in case you need to tie your pet up to a tree or chair. Simply unlatch your handle to tether your dog.

Integrated Dispenser – Mounted flush and easily clips onto the leash. No more forgotten bags.

How it Works

The video above highlights the steps given below:

– Press the two buttons to unlock the latch and make a connection.
– Once the buttons are released, the latch is securely locked.
– The only way to remove the latch is to press the buttons and pull apart

Click Here to Buy Now: $60 $100 (40% off). Hurry, only 6/35 left!

Google is rumored to be working on a foldable PIXEL Smartphone with a release date as early as 2021

It seems like Google was hibernating all through last year and the company finally woke up in May with their IO conference (which they canceled in 2020). As we gear up for Techtober (an informal term MKBHD uses to describe the September-October-November months that see all the major smartphone releases), rumors are suggesting that the Pixel 6 may be accompanied by the announcement of something MUCH more interesting… a foldable Pixel phone.

Developers who scanned through the Android 12 Beta were surprised to find model numbers for the Pixel 6 family, including foldable codenamed ‘Passport’. Suggesting that it would be a passport-shaped device that would open and close like the Samsung Galaxy Fold, with a similar dual-screen layout. The rumors prompted Tech YouTuber Waqar Khan to create renders of the purported device, which comes with a Pixel 5-inspired camera module, an outer screen with a hole-punch camera, and a large folding screen on the inside with yet another hole-punch camera.

The existence of a Pixel Fold was first touted by Ross Young, a digital analyst, who took to Twitter to mention that Google could launch the folding phone as early as 2021, or in the beginning of 2022. Young also said that the company was toying with the idea of a rollable smartphone, but the mention of “Project Passport” in Google’s own Android Beta seemed to confirm that they were working on developing a stock Android OS just for a foldable Pixel.

2021 is definitely an interesting year for Google, as they’re also developing their own silicon to rival Apple. Titled ‘Whitechapel’, Google’s silicon chip will make it to its smartphones, hopefully giving it a performance upgrade that should push it miles ahead of its competition. The Whitechapel chip could potentially even make the foldable Pixel an incredibly powerful and efficient device.

Waqar Khan’s renders give us a clue of what a folding Pixel would look/feel like. Schematically, it’s no different from Samsung’s first folding phone; although with significant developments made in the world of flexible OLED displays, maybe the ‘Pixel Fold’ could avoid the pitfalls of the Galaxy Fold that came 2 years before it. The renders show a clean matte body (like last year’s Pixel device) along with the presence of a fingerprint reader on the back. That particular detail could be a creative call on Khan’s part, given that in-screen fingerprint readers seem to be quite the norm with Android phones over the past year.

The confirmed Pixel 6 is set to debut at Google’s ‘Made By Google’ hardware event, which usually happens around October. It’s unclear if the event will be an in-person or a virtual one, and we can only hope that the company also teases (if not releases) the folding Pixel along with its expected lineup which includes a flagship phone, smart-speaker, and possibly Google’s first-ever smartwatch, which comes 2 years after the company announced it was acquiring Fitbit for $2.1 billion.

Designer/Visualizer: Waqar Khan

New images show the majestic Honda Ridgeline Electric Pickup Truck dominating on even the toughest terrain

Honda Ridgeline Electric Pickup Truck Concept

Purpose-built for handling tough tasks with ease, the Honda Ridgeline EV Concept was designed to project power. Its tough, sinewy construction puts other pickup trucks to shame, and makes a case for ‘maximalism’ in automotive design. Sure, minimally designed trucks (yeah, I’m looking at you, Tesla) look alright, but using minimalism to be different feels like a cop-out. The Ridgeline is a great example of how a truck can look different without compromising on an aggressive, muscular, dominating design language.

We featured the Honda Ridgeline EV Concept a week ago (you can click here to read the original piece which got over 90,000 pageviews) and today we look at the concept in its natural habitat – anywhere except the road!

Honda Ridgeline Electric Pickup Truck Concept

The Ridgeline EV concept comes from the mind of California-based Rene Garcia, a concept designer at ILM who’s previously worked on The Mandalorian, Thor: Ragnarok, The Avengers, and the Transformers anthology. Garcia began designing the vehicle as a Dakar rally truck, but gradual iterations slowly turned it into a conceptual pickup truck for Honda. Designed to handle pretty much anything you can throw at it, the EV comes with its own winch-hook on the front, a frunk behind it, suicide-style rear doors that give you access to the car’s spacious interiors, and an expandable truck-bed on the back that even comes equipped with tools and emergency medical kits.

Honda Ridgeline Electric Pickup Truck Concept

Against rocky terrain, it’s easy to draw parallels between the Ridgeline EV and the Warthog anti-infantry vehicle from the popular game Halo. They come from the same place of wanting to project power and assertion, and were made to operate seamlessly on any surface. The Ridgeline’s ground-clearance and large treads do wonders on rough land, and something about seeing a car leaving a massive dust cloud just gets the adrenaline rushing!

Honda Ridgeline Electric Pickup Truck Concept

Honda Ridgeline Electric Pickup Truck Concept

The Ridgeline is bulky to look at, but negative spaces in its design help cut its volume manifold, still making it look like a chiseled, mean machine. Two cutouts in the hood let you look at the top of the car’s shock absorbers, while the doors come with two sets of windows – one on the top as well as fixed windows near the legs, to help sunlight pore in. There’s a skylight built in too, and if at any point of time you need more open space, the back of the car opens up and allows the rear seats to flip 180° and face backward!

Honda Ridgeline Electric Pickup Truck Concept

Honda Ridgeline Electric Pickup Truck Concept

The car comes designed for the great outdoors. Its top allows you to add an aerodynamic roof box for extra storage (if the truck-bed isn’t enough), and the car’s front and back come dotted with lights to keep the road ahead visible, as well as allow you to be seen from a distance.

Honda Ridgeline Electric Pickup Truck Concept

The Honda Ridgeline EV concept’s interiors literally put you in the lap of luxury too, no matter how deserted and inhabitable the immediate outdoors are. The pickup truck comes with immaculate leather surfacing on the seats as well as leather and wood trims on the doors and the dashboard. The dash also comes equipped with a pretty wide single-screen that covers your entire field of view from left to right. Side cameras feed video footage right into this dashboard and a rear-view camera sends its feed to a rear-view display up top. Don’t worry if you’re not in the driver’s seat or if you’re sitting shotgun. The rear seats have their own entertainment systems too, with interactive displays integrated into the backside of the front seats. The skylight in the center is accompanied by ceiling lights on either side, so you’ve got nothing to worry about when you’re driving in pitch darkness. Moreover, the seats recline fully and the back opens up into a really comfy bed if you want to set up camp anywhere. However, if you’ve got yourself a quad-bike, you could easily mount it on the back too!

Honda Ridgeline Electric Pickup Truck Concept

Honda Ridgeline Electric Pickup Truck Concept

Honda Ridgeline Electric Pickup Truck Concept

Honda Ridgeline Electric Pickup Truck Concept

Honda Ridgeline Electric Pickup Truck Concept

Also Read: Honda’s INSANE electric pickup truck concept will have the Tesla Cybertruck begging for mercy

This is an independently-made conceptual design and the Honda logo is used for representational purposes only.

Sony is disrupting the photography industry with its Airpeak S1 drone that can mount ANY Sony Alpha camera

Sony is probably the only company at the moment to be able to boast of having a robust camera as well as a burgeoning aerial-tech business. It’s preceded only by GoPro, which launched the Karma drone back in 2016 and discontinued it in 2018 after a very tepid response. GoPro’s cameras, however, are still some of the most popular payload options to add on existing drones, but that pales in comparison to what Sony is offering. Sony’s first drone, the Airpeak S1, is a large pro-level drone that is designed to carry a gimbal along with a full-size mirrorless Sony Camera. It expands what your existing camera is capable of, and essentially means your professional camera (and its lenses) can now take to the skies, capturing professional-grade image and video content.

Make no mistake, the Airpeak S1 isn’t your average drone. It isn’t meant for FPV racing or for consumer-grade aerial shots like drones from DJI or Parrot. The Airpeak S1 is the kind of drone a high-budget photographer or cinematographer would use for taking film-grade shots. The drone comes built entirely by the folks at Sony, engineered to work seamlessly with a 3-axis gimbal and a host of Sony’s cameras, including the A1, A911, A7s111, A7RIV, and FX3 cameras, along with E-Mount lenses between 14mm and 85mm.

The Airpeak S1 is currently the smallest drone ever made to be able to carry a full-size camera. Measuring 644mm in total span, the drone’s most compelling features are its ability to go from 0-50mph in 3.5 seconds, and its stability and wind resistance, making it perfect for aerial shots no matter the weather… although those figures change with different cameras and lenses. According to Sony, the Airpeak can stay stable in winds of up to 44.7 miles per hour, a feat made possible by the 5 additional stereo cameras located on the drone that help it constantly optimize its performance, along with an infrared range-finder that actively helps it avoid obstacles.

For now, the Airpeak S1 can either be controlled via its remote, or the Airpeak Flight app, which will be available later this year only for iOS devices. Sony has worked with drone gimbal experts at Gremsby to develop a bespoke 3-axis stabilizer for the Airpeak S1, although this will be available as an additional purchase. The drone and gimbal can both be controlled singularly by the remote that can hook up to an iPad for viewfinding purposes. Somewhere down the line, Sony will allow the drone and the gimbal to be operated independently (allowing one person to take on piloting activities while the other person oversees cinematography). While launching the drone, Sony also announced that it was working on a cloud-based app called Airpeak Base, that would let users plot automated flight routes and manage a fleet of Airpeak drones.

The Airpeak S1 currently exists as an incredibly niche product that’s made for professional use. Just the drone itself comes with a whopping $9,000 price tag (the gimbal and camera cost extra), which definitely puts it in a class of its own, but then again, the drone lets you mount 8K cameras on it along with a wide range of lenses. While this isn’t something that would probably excite consumers, it opens up an entirely new class of drones, which could one day even work with smartphones (imagine an Apple-branded drone that works with your iPhone 12 Pro).

Sony’s $9,000 drone will be made available at the end of this year – For that price tag, you’ll get the drone along with 2 batteries, a charger, and a remote. The Airpeak S1 still awaits approval from the FAA, although Sony’s even made it clear that the production and manufacturing of all the drone’s hardware is happening in Japan, in light of US legislation and controversies around all drones being manufactured in China.

Designer: Sony

Honda’s INSANE electric pickup truck concept will have the Tesla Cybertruck begging for mercy

In a back-alley street fight, the Cybertruck looks like the edgy teenager who just lifts weights and has never done a leg-day… the Honda Ridgeline EV, on the other hand, looks like a 40-something veteran who’s returned from being stationed in the middle east for decades. Pitch the two together and it’s pretty evident who’d win in a bare-knuckle scuffle.

Something about the Ridgeline EV concept makes you want to take it seriously. It wasn’t built for fun, those windows aren’t for lobbing steel balls at… it’s inherently sinewy, bold, and is purpose-built for power-tasks.

The Ridgeline EV concept comes from the mind of California-based Rene Garcia, a concept designer at ILM who’s previously worked on The Mandalorian, Thor: Ragnarok, The Avengers, and the Transformers anthology. Garcia began designing the vehicle as a Dakar rally truck, but gradual iterations slowly turned it into a conceptual pickup truck for Honda. Designed to handle pretty much anything you can throw at it, the EV comes with its own winch-hook on the front, a frunk behind it, suicide-style rear doors that give you access to the car’s spacious interiors, and an expandable truck-bed on the back that even comes equipped with tools and emergency medical kits.

A standout feature of the car’s design is in its use of hollow spaces. The Ridgeline is bulky to look at, but negative spaces in its design help cut its volume manifold, still making it look like a chiseled, mean machine. Two cutouts in the hood let you look at the top of the car’s shock absorbers, while the doors come with two sets of windows – one on the top as well as fixed windows near the legs, to help sunlight pore in. There’s a skylight built in too, and if at any point of time you need more open space, the back of the car opens up and allows the rear seats to flip 180° and face backward!

Designer: Rene Garcia

Unusual iPhone 14 (2022) render shows a smartphone with an L-shaped secondary display

What happens inside Apple’s design studio remains one of the world’s most closely guarded secrets… it’s bad for consumers (because they’re often taken by surprise), but it’s great for concept designers who get tonnes of leeway when it comes to making experimental versions of their favorite gadgets. Meet the iPhone 14 concept from the mind of Max Burgos – for the most part, it looks just like a normal iPhone, except for the unique secondary display located on the back, wrapping around the camera module.

The iPhone 14 concept shows the unique symbiotic relationship displays have with cameras. On the front, the camera results in a notched display, on the back, however, the camera causes the display to take on an L-shaped design! As unusual as this secondary display may be, it actually serves as a way to reinforce Apple’s app ecosystem – here’s how. The secondary display could be prime real estate for interacting with Apple’s OWN apps. Apple’s clock would show up on the back, iMessage notifications could pop up on the screen, and it could even serve as a dashboard for AirTag tracking. The L shape provides a lot of freedom as far as interfaces go – Burgos even demonstrates how a rear-facing camera app would look, allowing you to click wide-angle selfies using the iPhone’s main camera!

While entirely conceptual (the iPhone 14 isn’t due for another 16 months), Max Burgos’ iPhone 14 exists as a fan-made design that reinforces HIS OWN wants and aspirations from an iPhone. It’s rare that the execs at Apple ever reach out for customer feedback, so these concepts are perhaps the only way in which consumers can actually express interest in new features or visual details. I’d even throw a 3.5mm jack into the concept, just for kicks!

Designer: Max Burgos Morjaen for ConceptsiPhone