Will.i.am talks techCNET's Brian Tong sits down with artist Will.i.am to talk about his involvement with the tech community, his new iPhone case, and the tech gadgets he uses.
-Hey, guys. Brian Tong here, MacWorld 2013. Sitting to next me, Will.i.am, one of the creative minds out there and really getting involved with technology-- also has a pretty good hairstylist, if you could recognize that. -Your last name is Tong? -Tong. Yeah. T-O-N-G. -Tong. Tong. Tong. Tong. Tong. Tong. That's crazy. -All right, Will. So you're here-- you're one of the first artists that got involved with technology companies from a creative side. How did that kind of come about just for you and the inspiration you have in that. -I just-- I love the creative community. You know, a lot of times our world, my world, there's an audience there. You're a celebrity. People celebrate your art that you think that that's the way the world is. That's not the way the world is. Actually, there's other impactors out there. You know, how they socialize with their friends and their families. I wanna hang out with those guys. I already know what my world has to offer, like hanging out with coders and architects and those guys-- what? -You actually have an iPhone case under the i.am+ line, right? You're gonna rock that thing? -Yes. So this is my-- the thing I created, funded, and put out-- -Uh huh. -put out to market. So it works like this. It's a camera with different lenses. This is the fisheye lens, my favorite. We have a 360 lens, a panoramic lens, a zoom lens, a wide angle lens. Has better flash and a battery and a keyboard. So-- and the way it works is your iPhone fits in it like a cartridge. So this would be like your film, like old school-- -Yeah. Yeah. -[unk] cameras. And it sits in, closes, and snaps, and then boom, that's how it works. We have it for the 5s as well. This is for the iPhone 5. The difference for the 5, we also have a LED display here for-- see, it fits phones here. You see who's calling, -Uh huh. -text messages here in the front. Same kind of action and this is for like all your filters. -How much retail these guys for? -These are cheap. It's like, you know, 7Gs. Just kidding. -Oh really? Okay. -No, it's like $199. -So I was curious. Like, how does your-- you know, the music and creative side of you influence tech and maybe how does-- it go both ways? -Yeah, I'm not-- Actually, I'm not-- to each his own. I got my tan and my-- every celebrity is after a check. Every celebrity is after a check. I'm after-- to leave check marks on things that I've checked off, dreams that I've had, even if I have to use my own checks, play on checks. -Yeah. There's a lot-- if you made-- do you have a little check graphic if how many times you saw the checks? -Different types of checks. -Yeah. -Check it out. -Check how? Chick, chick, chickity, chick? Chicken? Check-en? -No, that was racist. -No. No. -I don't [unk]. -So, will you be coming back to MacWorld in the future? What do you think? -Yeah. I'm an Apple fan. I state at my, you know, my Mac OS every day, making music. Like really, got a Mac account for my e-mail. -He's like, "Oh you're all over that." Now, did I hear right that you're actually taking some like computer science classes? Is that true? -Yeah. -Right? -I wanna-- Yeah. That's what-- That's my next thing. I talked to these guys. They do crazy-- crazy-ass coding. I'm like, "How long did you go to school for this?""You know, 4 years, dude." Four years? I toured for 4 years, -Yeah. -you know. So I really want to do that, dedicate, discipline myself to do that, see what happens 4 years from now. -All right. That's cool. Well, there you have it. Will.i.am, my striped-hair brother from another mother. -Yeah. -Check. Check.