Pablo Escobar’s brother launches gold foldable smartphone in a bid to “beat Apple”

Roberto Escobar, brother of the infamous drug lord Pablo Escobar, has launched a gold folding phone using a raunchy campaign featuring women in their underwear. The Escobar Fold One smartphone has a stainless steel case in a brushed gold finish, a flexible screen and a dual camera for taking photos. The screen allows the phone, which […]

Dezeen’s top 10 design and technology trends of 2019

For our review of 2019, deputy editor Augusta Pownall picks out ten trends that have preoccupied the design and technology industries this year, from the circular economy to the continued rise of China and a focus on privacy. Surveillance and privacy Data is one of the most lucrative resources on the planet, but concern has […]

BIG’s Friday Smart Lock is its smallest ever product

Danish architecture firm BIG has branched into smart home products with the Friday lock, which combines a minimal form and enhanced security features. Controlled via smartphone, the Friday Smart Lock can automatically unlock a door when it senses the resident approaching, lock it as they leave, or allow them to remotely control who has access […]

Rain-harvesting panels would let people in drought-stricken cities catch their own water

Designer Shaakira Jassat has created a rain-catcher that is slim enough to fit on the outside of buildings in dense urban environments. The Aquatecture panel is designed to collect rainwater as it trickles over the openings in the structure before pumping it into a building’s grey-water system. Jassat, who is the founder of Studio Sway, […]

Four technologies tackling the problem of plastic pollution in rivers

Most ocean plastic starts off in rivers. From bubble curtains to googly-eyed trash wheels, here are four technologies designed to intercept river plastic before it gets to the sea. Last month The Ocean Cleanup turned its attention to river plastic and launched the Interceptor, a floating device it claims can harvest up to 100,000 kilograms […]

Two robotic fabrication methods entwine to make Tongji University bridge

Thin carbon fibres wind over a 3D-printed metal frame to form this hybrid bridge, made by university students in Shanghai using two emerging robotic fabrication techniques. Students participating in the DigitalFUTURES International 2019 summer workshop at Tongji University worked with local research studio Fab-Union to design the bridge, which can hold more than 20 people. […]

V&A Dundee curator selects five designs that map the evolution of robotics

An exhibition at the V&A Dundee explores the evolving relationship between humans and robots. From 1920s sci-fi films to brain-controlled exoskeletons, curator Kirsty Hassard picks five highlights. Hello, Robot. Design Between Human and Machine looks at how we have perceived and interacted with robots, both in the past and present. It also examines how they […]

Plastic bubbles incorporated into high-rise to reduce concrete usage by 35 per cent

A German construction project has saved an estimated 136 tonnes of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere by using incorporating air pockets made of recycled plastic within its concrete slabs. The two SparkassenVersicherung (SV) buildings in Mannheim’s Glückstein district are being built with concrete slabs developed by Cobiax, which include voids so that less concrete is […]

Soft neural implant allows scientists to manipulate brain cells via smartphone

Brain disease research could be sped up using a smartphone-controlled “plug-and-play” neural implant invented by scientists from the USA and South Korea. The researchers, who come primarily from the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) and the University of Washington, designed the soft device to deliver drugs or coloured lights directly to targeted […]

Competition-winning mobile accessory designs showcased at Samsung Developer Conference 2019

Jury members discuss the top-three winners of the Samsung Mobile Design Competition mobile accessories category in this movie Dezeen filmed at the Samsung Developer Conference in San Jose, California. Portuguese designers André Gouveia, Nuno Pires and João Pereira were awarded first place for their Star of Galaxy design, a robotic stand that turns a Samsung […]

Competition-winning mobile wallpaper designs showcased at Samsung Developer Conference 2019

In this Dezeen movie, jury members discuss the winners of the Samsung Mobile Design Competition wallpaper category, which were revealed last month at the Samsung Developer Conference in San Jose, California. Finnish designer Kalle Järvenpää was awarded first place for his Garden of Galaxy design, a personalised flower generated by an algorithm that enables every […]

TypeCase keyboard simplifies texting for people with visual or motor impairments

Product-design engineer Dougie Mann has created a keyboard that, when hooked up to a smartphone via a custom case, can help amputees and people with sight loss type more easily. In a world of sleek, homogenous touchscreen surfaces, the 3D-printed device brings tactility back into technology through five physical buttons, which are used to communicate […]

Seymourpowell’s Atmosphère devices diffuse cosmetics at the user

London studio Seymourpowell has designed concepts for a wearable collar and chaise longue powered by AI, which use atomised cosmetic products to protect city-dwellers from harmful pollutants. The wearable collar and chaise longue, called Atmosphère, convert beauty products into fine particles or droplets before projecting them onto the user in the form of vapour. As […]

The classic flip phone returns as Motorola updates Razr with foldable display

Motorola has thrown its hat into the folding smartphone ring with a revamped version of its Razr flip phone that was first launched 15 years go. The new model of the same name, which will launch in the US in January 2020, mimics the recognisable shape of the 2004 original with a cover that flips […]

UK student’s fish-waste bioplastic MarinaTex wins 2019 James Dyson Award top prize

An easily biodegradable material that could be “part of a global answer” to single-use plastic pollution has won its inventor, British designer Lucy Hughes, the international James Dyson Award. Hughes’ MarinaTex bioplastic is strong, translucent and flexible, making it a possible alternative for single-use packaging such as bags and sandwich wrappers. Unlike current materials used […]

Seek app lets users identify plant and animal species in real time

Kids can identify plants, flowers, insects and wildlife while tracking biodiversity in their area, using the augmented-reality app Seek by iNaturalist and the WWF. Described as “like Pokémon Go for nature”, Seek lets users point their smartphone camera at any plant or animal species to identify it in real time. Anyone can use the app, […]

Spira countertop bioreactor allows users to grow their own algae for food

Individuals could cut their greenhouse-gas emissions by replacing meals with algae grown at home using the countertop Spira device by recent design graduate Rob Russell. Spira is a photobioreactor, which means it uses light to cultivate microorganisms – in this case, spirulina, a nutrient-dense algae. Spirulina is so rich in protein, minerals, vitamins and antioxidants […]

Hyperstealth Biotechnology’s “invisibility cloak” can conceal people and buildings

Canadian camouflage company Hyperstealth Biotechnology has patented the technology behind a material that bends light to make people and objects near invisible to the naked eye. The material, called Quantum Stealth, is currently still in the prototyping stage, but was developed by the company’s CEO Guy Cramer primarily for military purposes, to conceal agents and […]

Garden of Galaxy personalised flower wins the Samsung Mobile Design Competition wallpaper category

Dezeen promotion: a personalised flower generated by an algorithm has won the wallpaper category in the Samsung Mobile Design Competition. Created by Finnish designer Kalle Järvenpää and titled Garden of Galaxy, the work would give every Samsung Galaxy user the chance to grow a virtual flower, unique to their device, on their screen. Finnish designer […]

Today’s innovations could be “redundant in five years” says curator of Designs for Different Futures

The Designs for Different Futures exhibition at the Philadelphia Museum of Art collates projects to tackle some of today’s biggest issues – including an arched pavilion for harvesting crickets, clothes that grow and a font illegible to computers. Designs for Different Futures comprises 80 works arranged into 11 categories Designs for Different Futures comprises 80 works […]

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