Week in Tech: Hololens, X-Wings and the Apple Watch - the future has arrived

Week in Tech

Technology is many things, but it's rarely dull. Take this week, for example. Microsoft may have just shown us the future of the PC, we've seen smartphones covered in cows and we've discovered how chickens can cause chaos in virtual cities. Not only that, but we've seen a whole tech sector die and a watch hurt somebody's shoulder. It's another weird and wonderful week in tech!

Microsoft: Build and they will come

This week Microsoft held its Build 2015 conference, sadly without Steve Ballmer doing any developer dancing. But there was more than enough excitement coming from Microsoft products to compensate: we saw a holographic version of Windows via Microsoft Hololens, a way to turn Windows 10 phones into fully-fledged PCs with apps to match. We saw a new version of Windows 10, of course, but that wasn't the only interesting announcement, as Cameron Faulkner explains in his TL;DR guide to the biggest announcements of Build 2015.

A new Surface should surface soon

Microsoft hasn't just been messing around with virtual reality and phone apps. It's been beavering away on Surface Pro 4 too. Kane Fulton's been following the leaks and rumours, and "there's good reason to believe that the Surface Pro 4 could turn out to be something special." With brand new Windows, brand new processors and a revitalised Microsoft behind it, the Surface Pro 4 could be one of the best Windows 10 devices we'll see this year.

Gee, it's the LG G4

The new LG G4 "comes with an all new design, a brilliant camera, a fancy screen… and it's covered in cow." Not a whole cow, of course: as James Rogerson and Matt Hanson explain, "It features a premium design led by a leather back option that contrasts with the glass-backed Samsung Galaxy S6 and slippery iPhone 6 aluminum. No need to buy a leather case now." It's available for order now in South Korea and should cost around £500 (US$650, AU$,1066). How does it compare to its predecessor, the LG G3? It's better. James Rogerson explains why in LG G3 vs LG G4.

Have we just seen the Samsung Galaxy Note 5?

Two new Samsung phones have been spotted in the wild. One of them appears to be a variant of the Galaxy S6, but the other one's more interesting: it might just be the Samsung Galaxy Note 5, or Project Noble as it's currently called. If you're wondering what kind of processor it has, what the pixel density of the display is or whether it can talk to animals, we've no idea, and neither does anybody else outside Samsung. Let the leaks begin!

Apple Watch watch: rubbish for running, far too cheap

It's been an interesting week for Apple Watch watchers, because the first happy customers have got their Watches on their wrists. Their verdict? It's rubbish for running. Our own Gareth Beavis reckons it isn't as good as a Garmin. Not only that, but "I can't tread water and I've hurt my shoulder." We're not sure whether that's the Watch's fault.

Are watch firms worried by the Apple Watch? Tag Heuer isn't. It's unveiled a fancy Android Wear watch that'll cost US$1,400 (about £900, AU$1,740) and run for 40 hours on a single charge. It'll be a while before we can check that claim, though. It won't go on sale until at least October.

If you've ordered an Apple Watch and you're still waiting, James Peckham knows why. "Goddamn Taptic Engines!" he cries. The taptic engine is the bit of the Watch that taps you when you receive a notification, and one of Apple's suppliers wasn't very good at making them. So many of AAC Technologies Holdings PLC's taptic engines failed in testing that Apple had to switch suppliers at the last minute.

TomTom's in bandit country

Would you swap a GoPro for a TomTom? The question isn't as mad as it sounds, because TomTom is moving into the action camera business with the TomTom Bandit. As Hugh Langley explains: "It might sound like a strange move for one of the world's leading satnav companies to make, but TomTom started down this road with the launch of its 2013 Runner watch and subsequent sports wearables." The aim is to make action cameras even more awesome than they already are, and we can't wait to put it to the test.


We've been saying for ages that 3D TV was dead tech walking, and this week Sky hammered another three-dimensional nail into its three-dimensional coffin. It's pulling the plug on its 3D channel this summer, presumably because nobody's been watching it. We hate to say we told you so, but…

X-wings and chickens. The world's getting weirder

We've seen things you wouldn't believe. Real X-Wings in real space, and fake chickens in fake cities. Two people from Essex have managed to send a model X-Wing up to the very edge of space and film it with high altitude balloons and GoPro cameras for no good reason, while in GTA V's Los Santos we've finally discovered why the chicken crossed the road. "To commit armed robbery, hijack a cop car and finally make its getaway in a fighter jet," Hugh Langley says.

The TechRadar hive mind. The Megazord. The Voltron. When our powers combine, we become 'TECHRADAR STAFF'. You'll usually see this author name when the entire team has collaborated on a project or an article, whether that's a run-down ranking of our favorite Marvel films, or a round-up of all the coolest things we've collectively seen at annual tech shows like CES and MWC. We are one.