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Episode 25: Torture testing the iPad Mini in Paris!Bonjour, Always On fans! Molly Wood visits the City of Light where the future of technology is being discussed at Le Web 2012. Plus, torture tests are back! Molly takes Apple's iPad Mini along the Champs-Elysees for a Paris-inspired test.
-[unk]. -This week on Always On, the connected world of the future-- -He's getting on a fight, isn't he? -And we smash an iPad on the [unk]. Always On is on -Hi, I'm Molly Wood. Welcome to Always On, the show where we take a look at the tech that's part of your life and your future. This week, I came all the way to Paris to talk about your future. I attended a conference called LeWeb 2012 to find out what they mean by the Internet of Things. -Oh, how are you doing? -There's wine. There's cheese. There are cute little appetizers. This is not just an ordinary conference here at LeWeb and it's not just about coming to Paris to eat and drink. The future of technology is being discussed here and the trend is, as always, all connected all time. -The concept here at LeWeb 2012 and the electronics world in general is the Internet of Things. As SmartThings' CTO Jeff Hagins put it on stage, the entire world is becoming programmable. This conference is about showing off some of those programmable things. -So, I'm going to actually use the SmartThings' app which everybody here at LeWeb can see. Let's actually turn on the Christmas lights from here. There we go. So-- that looks great, Jessie, but I think it will look even better if I turn off the overhead lights. So, I'm going to do that as well. -As you can see, this is so much more than just like a remote control ball. This is a robotic gaming system. -How long was I asleep? I must have been tired. Do you want to listen to a story? -No. -The way we make the Nest Learning Thermostat, basically it's a thermostat but redesigned totally to be connected to the internet and to provide new function and features to provide the best comfort but energy savings as well. And it can really bring those features only through being an internet connected device. -Oh, we're going on a date. -So, I'm taking her to the restaurant and I can see them bristle many out here. So, I can select my items that I want to order. Okay, we can order some fries and some [unk]. -A bottle of [unk]. -Yeah. And I can order some champagne as well and then-- yeah, I think-- yeah, the way that our waiter [unk] with us quickly. -Okay. -Oh, yeah. This is the best service we're going to have in Paris, I think. -All right. So, okay. -Oh, that's-- -Oh! -It's very quick. -Oh, how lovely. -I'll give you an order of a champagne as well. -Delicious. -In the future, our connected devices will, in theory, let us live lives that are more convenient and much more personalized. -We can connect to the real world in the internet and you walk into a retail shop and they know what sizes you have. They know what you like. They know what not to show you. You will have a better shopping experience. And that's about taking friction out and actually making retailers do what they do best which is giving you a good customer service. Now, we can take all the fraction of paying out to that which is what we're showing here. See, even better by experience. So, I don't need to carry my wallet full of loyalty cards, vouchers, coupons, credit cards. I just walk in and, you know, it's me. -And today, we're talking mostly about phones and tablets. In the future, who knows what devices will communicate with each other and what those devices will look like. -But increasingly, we won't just have one, two, three, four screens around us. We'll actually have 10, 20, 30, 40 things that we have around us on us, smaller things, lighter things closer to the body that also have censors but they won't be the full purpose, multipurpose. They won't do a hundred things. They'll do a few things really, really well. Great device agnostics. So, in a moment, everything is mobile, mobile because frankly that's the goal and very easy to work with. But in the future, you'll be talking to TV. I mean, then we might-- and get the internet fridge maybe. But everything that's on the internet, everything that's connected via [unk] can technically be heat resistance, so. -Everything from your home appliances to the scale in your bathroom. At Paris Based [unk], it's all about using your data to help yourself. -So, this scale can work both, you know, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. -Okay. -In these scales, we are just seen in Bluetooth. So, yes, it's just right now. So, this is the last [unk] 75 that's something given around. And so, it will be [unk]. That's it. You-- you can see it. -Oh, wow. -So, right now it predicts my weight carefully in the last 3 years. -Wow! -And you see that there is a periodic variation during somewhere in winter. -The holidays, yeah, lots. December. Not everyone is convinced that every device needs to be connected though or that all of these connections are coming anytime soon. -I think that if you look at it, there are only certain devices that shouldn't-- you should and could be connected to the internet. But those things take time for the customers to adapt to and to understand. -Now, is it only something should be connected? What kinds of things do you think should not be connected to the internet? -Well, you look at a lot of things. Does your stove need to be connected? Totally. It absolutely needs to be connected. -I need to text it and tell it to turn on because I'm making dinner for a party. -Exactly. But it was dinner in the stove. -Oh, no. But it's preheating. -Yeah. Like preheating is not a bad thing. Do you need a toilet to be connected to that-- to the internet? -Maybe for health reasons. -Maybe. Maybe. But the question is, it's not about-- -I'm not ready for my implants. I mean I'll definitely-- -Oh, really. Okay. -I'm going to bring it on camp here. -Well, I'll let you be the early adaptor. I will wait. -How close are we, do you think, into this-- this kind of pipe dream of the-- that really, truly connected Internet of Things? -I think we're farther away than people think. I mean there are more smart devices on the planet here than there are humans. So, in terms of the devices that are-- they're everywhere. But-- but having them all connect together and work on my behalf, you know, people talk about, "Hey, I want my stuff everywhere." Look, if you buy a Windows phone, you buy Windows PC and Windows app, you can get it across those. The refrigerator, that's a different story. You know, I might have to work with the home automation, people, in terms of how that connects in. You know, even if-- if the data is in the cloud, it's another device. So, I think we're closer than we've ever been. I think it's a journey. And I think we're, you know, partway down that journey and it will continue to go forward. So, it's not next year or a sudden magic. -Or, is it. Connecting the world in a seamless, easy and personal way is tricky, yes. It involves companies working together, radical new device and interface designs and there will be serious privacy and security hurdles to overcome but that doesn't mean you can't get a glimpse into the future in your own mind today. -So, the Muse is a four-sensor brainwave headband. It's actually able to sense your brain activity and give you feedbacks so that you can play games directly with your mind as well as improve your mental abilities. In the far future, this is going to be a tool that allows you to do things like control the lighting in your home or your automated phone system or your, you know, your phone system-- your phone or your home system or your car directly with your mind. So, the long term future is actually allowing us to interact with devices in the world in really smart ways that are able to support you-- -Right. -because they know something about you. -Now, when you say like the far future, do you mean far, far? Because I'm kind of excited about that. -Awesome. So-- -How far are we talking? -Some of you would have thought that a mind control headset of any form would be a science fiction even a few years ago. And I think there are people who think that now, right, who would hear that thing. What? That can't be, you know. -Yeah. It's-- -We're already in an exciting future. -We are already in the future. -I love it. I love it. Okay, we're going to take a quick break. When we come back, we took the iPad Mini out on to the streets of Paris and tried to break it. I got to say I'm pretty let down by the performance of the iPad Mini in our Torture Test especially after its big brother did so well. Passersby on the [unk], in case you're wondering, were totally horrified. And that is it for Always On in 2012. Don't miss us though in January live from Las Vegas at CES. We will have live Torture Test on our CES stage. And our next big thing super session is all about the connected devices of the future. Then, we'll be back for Season 3 toward the end of February. Thank you so much for watching Always On everyone. See you soon. That's why I tell these buses to drive away. Okay. -It's over. Here comes one now. And then-- all right, that will do it for-- what the [unk]. We'll see. You could just like tell them to go around. It's okay if they cross right behind me, I think. Of the connected devices of the future. [unk]. Really. Come on. I thought it would perform better especially for-- I can't believe the guys were just like [unk], I'm walking by. I got to say I'm a little disappointed in it though. I'm a little disappointed in the streets of Paris.