With TinyScreen, you can make your own wearable
Not impressed with the Apple Watch? Serial tinkerer Ken Burns has launched a Kickstarter campaign for a device that could offer you the opportunity to try and make a wearable of your own. TinyScreen is a thumb-sized color display that plugs into the TinyDuino platform, and can be configured to serve as a smartwatch, smart glasses, a tiny console, and much more.
Measuring just 25.8 x 25 mm (1.02 x 0.98-in), TinyScreen sports four integrated buttons and a 96 x 64 pixel OLED display that's capable of delivering 16-bit color depth and contains a controllable backlight.
Though experienced hackers will doubtless come up with some wild applications, TinyScreen contains several default applications that will work out of the box. The most compelling is probably a smartwatch, and TinyScreen can interface with an Android or iOS device via Bluetooth LE and an app, to display notifications including phone calls, texts, and tweets. 3D-printed watch enclosures are also available to download or purchase.
TinyScreen can also be used as a basic games console. It ships with Flappy Bird and Asteroids clones, but Burns says there's more software on the way. The games can be controlled with the four integrated buttons, plus two very small joysticks can be attached with an appropriate shield (or adapter). Videos can also be displayed on the TinyScreen via microSD card, and the Kickstarter campaign mentions it being used as part of a smart glasses device, too.
TinyScreen is programmed via web-based Arduino platform Codebender, which should be handy for newbies as it only requires that one plugs in TinyScreen to a computer via USB and transfer existing programs over to the device.
Kickstarter backers can pledge for a Basic Kit, which is US$55, and promises to deliver a TinyScreen, TinyDuino processor, USB TinyShield, and a Lithium Polymer battery pack. The cheapest remaining Smart Watch pledge commands $90. If all goes to plan, shipping is scheduled to start early next year.
The pitch video below gives an idea of what's on offer.