One thing you quickly learn about CES is that it’s impossible to see everything. Your best bet? Ignore the (admittedly excellent) program guide and app and just go with the flow. The crowds and buzz will lead you to the most interesting tech on display. So without further ado, here’s the stuff that caught our eye this past weekend in Las Vegas.
At Your Service: From quicker cell phone charging devices to smarter digital timepieces, things that make our lives simpler continue to dominate. For example, Huawei showcased its new Mate 9 Android smartphone for the U.S. that comes with Alexa built in, via a partnership with Amazon. The device also features the tech company’s new SuperCharge technology, which is said to deliver a full day’s charge in 20 minutes.
Smarter Mobility: Chrysler kicked off CES with an ambitious, autonomous vehicle called the Portal Concept. But the carmaker wasn’t the only one showcasing new mobility solutions. Case in point: The Gogoro Smartscooter, an all-electric two-wheeler that allows users to simply swap out depleted batteries at Gogoro stations for fully charged ones, instead of waiting to recharge. Hailing from Taiwan, the brand is looking to expand into other markets, including the U.S.
Hi-Def TVs, Higher-Def TVs and Highest Def TVs: Just when you thought TV clarity couldn’t get any better, it does. One of the showstoppers at CES was the Sony A1E, which features over 8 million self-illuminating pixels for mind-blowing picture quality (the photo doesn’t do it justice) as well as an acoustic surface technology that projects sound directly from the TV panel. Trippy.
Get-Fitter Gadgets: Long gone are the days of sweating that friend who reneged on the New Year’s resolution pact you two made to drop a few pounds. The latest fitness tech gives you all the support you need to get ready for the beach. One concept drawing lots of attention at CES was the Oakley Radar Pace. The technology, created by Intel and Oakley, uses a sunglass and earplug hybrid system to help push you through workouts with the help of a digital trainer in your ear.
Music Lovers Rejoice: Tech continues to change the way we experience beats. The popular digital music maker ROLI showcased its new custom soundpacks from Steve Aoki and RZA, giving anyone the ability to create their own music using the artists’ distinctive sounds. Other compelling music technology included Technics’ new high-tech SL-1200GR turntable, Monster’s new portable camouflage Blaster and Sony’s Wireless Noise Canceling Headphones.
Drones Never Die: Longer-range drones, miniature drones, faster drones, bigger drones, easier-to-navigate drones—so long as the devices give us a different or wilder view of our surroundings (and ourselves in the form of the ultimate selfie), we’re all in. And CES was filled with next-gen models of the flying cameras aimed at expanding those visual capabilities even further. One of the newest drone improvements on display: 4K HD video technology and electronic image stabilization upgrades.
So, How About Those VRs? It’s hard to tell if people are still really into VR or if they just love stopping by the booths to be entertained. There certainly wasn’t a shortage of displays showcasing the devices at CES, but the tech still hasn’t caught on the way some thought it would. One of the biggest questions facing VR is whether Hollywood can monetize the sense-altering technology, which will have a big impact on its future.