TODAY   |  September 04, 2013

TODAY’s Take: Are there too many tech toys?

With the anticipated launch of Apple’s new line of iPhones and Samsung’s release of a smart watch, TODAY’s Willie Geist, Al Roker and Natalie Morales discuss the future of tech gizmos.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> fall out there.

>> it's going to be colder coming up in the next couple of days.

>> i'm willie geist with natalie and al. laura mvula, she has a great voice.

>> and yesterday with ariana grande and her now. amazing voices.

>> she will be a huge star.

>> she has her family with her.

>> her brother and sister play with her.

>> she reminds me a little bit of emeli sande. remember that voice? beautiful.

>> unpleasant news to begin this morning, ariel castro, convicted kidnapper and rapist in the cleveland house of horrors was found hanged last night in his cell. he was monitored by routine guard checks every half hour. he was transported to a nearby hospital and pronounced dead about 90 minutes after he was found. he kidnapped three cleveland area women and held them hostage for more than a decade. his victims right there, michelle knight, amanda berry and gina dejesus.

>> a lot of people are saying how could this happen? under protective custody and every 30 minutes under watch, how he could pull something like this off.

>> everything removed from him that he could use to hang himself.

>> and a lot of questions and the investigation getting underway there but i think for the families, the question is to whether or not this offers closure or not. i mean, perhaps they're left with questions.

>> they'll never get it.

>> they weren't going to get answers anyway from him.

>> one of the young women said at his sentencing you put me through 11 years of hell and now you have to live in your own hell and if this is suicide hes caped his own hell on earth and took himself out of the game that way.

>> our cleveland station reporter said there were people. it was split. how did this happen but others saying good.

>> exactly. we'll wait to hear from the investigation. another serious topic of syria there was a lighter moment at the hearing. senator john mccain was caught on his iphone playing poker during the more than 3 hour senate foreign relations committee hearing. the washington post caught senator mccain deeply involved in the game.

>> he owned up to it, though. he tweeted. he said scandal, sarcastically, caught playing iphone game at 3 plus hour senate hearing. worst of all, i lost.

>> some people making a big deal of this. the headline scud poker saying this is a serious hearing on syria.

>> but if you ever sat in on these, there's a lot of tedium and breaks. so i don't think -- john mccain is not somebody --

>> and he knows the issue probable better than anyone there.

>> i think they'll merge forward.

>> he was playing angry birds space.

>> then we have a problem.

>> if he's dropping birds or big pigs.

>> now, this is the --

>> that's better.

>> there it is.

>> love it.

>> let's get to the al roker new gadget alert.

>> yeah.

>> apple has sent out invitations for a september 10th event, that's next week, widely believed to be the unveiling of the company's next line of iphone . the invitation reads this should bright b everyone's day. what are you reading into that?

>> a number of iphone in color.

>> yes.

>> and gold.

>> gold perhaps.

>> a less expensive iphone .

>> and a higher end iphone as well.

>> yeah.

>> so it's going to be interesting. this is the same company that, you know, offered nanos and i pods in different colors.

>> are you the guy that has to be there right away to get your pink iphone ?

>> no. i don't have to be right there. within a week or two perhaps.

>> you'll get the new iphone .

>> probably.

>> do you always get the new one.

>> do you find it improves enough to keep buying them?

>> yeah i do. i like to think so.

>> i think the cameras and stuff have gotten so much better. i don't even carry a camera anymore.

>> no, in fact, for the first time in two years running, stand alone sale -- sales of stand alone cameras have dropped. video camera sales have dropped because people -- not just apple but samsung and nokia and the quality is terrific.

>> it's so much easier. it all uploads into the cloud so you don't have to download your pictures all the time.

>> but this next thing, samsung is expected today be debut it's smart watch .

>> this is where you draw the line.

>> this is a device that it's the watch but you can also get e-mails and text alerts but it also monitors what you're eating.

>> you're also talking to a 59-year-old man that's got to look at a screen -- i'm sorry.

>> put your reading glasses on.

>> well, you know, i need -- okay, you got the iwatch and now i need the iglasses to be able to see it.

>> text coming in.

>> wait a minute. i got a fax coming in.

>> every time, al.

>> every time.

>> leave it to you every time.

>> i just have a vision of people walking around and talking into their wrists and running into each other constantly.

>> which brings us into the next story about smartphones helping save you in the crosswalk.

>> i need help on this one. there's new smartphone technology that will protect users from traffic collisions.

>> this is coming from honda.

>> to reduce the numbers of pedestrians hit by distracted drivers. when a walker is in danger of crossing a vehicle's path, the person walking gets a smartphone alert and the driver gets a dashboard alert.

>> i'm walking and i get an alert hold on a second, let's see.

>> yeah.

>> by the time i get the phone out, i'm roadkill.

>> i truly don't get this one. i don't get this one.

>> honda is a great car company. leave this one alone.

>> but a lot of cars now are equipped with so many different -- not this kind of technology but perhaps more effective technology where, for example, i drive my car and if somebody gets too close or if another vehicle is too close or if i start to drift, you get like a warning beeping sign or the blinkers in the mirrors flash as well.

>> it's good on the car. but if you're the pedestrian, your phone buzzes, by the time you get up you've been dead for five minutes.

>> you're in the crosswalk. what was his last words? let me get my phone.

>> does it have a brb app with it as well?

>> maybe not.

>> not so much.

>> all right. so we found two apps we're not going to get. okay. this is --

>> important reminder for all of you because we know you all love your pets so much. and we want the very best of the best in our question for the best trained pet contest. does your dog fetch your dinner? can your cat clean your room or pee on the toilet or whatever. i would put it out there. i would love it if my cat learned how to do that and you don't have to clean the litter box .

>> yeah, i want to go there.

>> dogs who play poker.

>> if dogs and cats play poker coming together around the table.

>> do you want that moment when you come home and you open the door and your cat is sitting there reading sports illustrated .

>> a little privacy.

>> like meet the parents , right? i would love that.

>> goyou can go to and submit it. three finalists will have the chance to complete live in the studio. the deadline to enter is this friday.

>> does it use the charmin?

>> it might.

>> air spray .

>> how are those cheerios coming right now? enjoying that breakfast?

>> the hair spray ?

>> not the hair spray , the air spray .