Lessons Learned from CES 2018

Well, I have returned from Las Vegas once again after experiencing the wonders that is CES. This shot here is from LG, and I forget what they called this, but it is a canyon of displays of some type.

I have discussed a few things about CES, but they are really summaries at best. The thing about CES is that there are so many things to talk about, it is actually unfair for me to discuss just one.

Still, I have bought home some stuff with me, and will be doing some hands-on reviews later. I have made some business contacts that are promising to send me some stuff, and I will review all that.

I have a phone book full of contacts that I will need to get back to. Until then, I’m going to talk about some things that I learned at CES.

1) Wireless Charging is going to be the new standard.

The Samsung S8 can do it. The new iPhone can do it. My LG G6 can do it. I have reported on Qi products many times, and ten years ago it was the Powermat, but you needed a special case. Now most smartphones have that in there, which means the end of charging cables.

2) Will VR ever take off?

Every time I am at CES, I see some amazing advancements in Virtual Reality. Generally, someone has some interesting games, as well a whole slough of 360 cameras. However, no one is talking about how to get this new medium of storytelling going. It is like the difference between the earliest silent films and modern film.

3) Everything will be Alexa or vocally controlled

I saw so many devices that could use some vocal control, from an Alexa device, that or Siri, or OK Google. I suppose that we just want to control all our devices vocally, because we want to live like Star Trek.

I didn’t even mention the power outage on Wednesday, or all of the startups that I will never have time to cover.

CES 2018 with ShowStoppers

For those of you who are not in the know, CES covers many places in Las Vegas including the Las Vegas Convention Center, the Sands/Venetian Convention Center Areas, and much more. Not only that, there are after-parties to attend, such as the CES Unveiled that I covered two days ago.

Among the most famous of these after parties is Showstoppers, and this one usually requires some kind of special invitation. Here are some of the companies that I had the opportunity to see.

I realize that this photo is a little blurry, but it gives you a good idea of what one of these after-parties are like. Note the elaborate backdrop in one of these casinos, which was the Wynn. Then there are the booths set up, and I didn’t get any good shots of the great cuisine.

Here’s another shot of the room. It really is awesome to be there.

Always glad to see that my old friends at Beyerdynamic are up to their old and new tricks. I don’t remember what the name of this particular headphone was, but I sure as heck want to report on it.

Glad to see that JLab was also on the scene with their headphones.

I always like what Supertooth has in stores, and they are getting into that wireless earbuds game with the TW1.

My friends at Jabra had some great stuff on display, and they never stop with their awesome.

Here is a bag that will give a loud alarm if you attempt to break in to it. It is an idea that really should have happened a long time ago.

This is a combination of a game with an app for something really interesting known as Beasts of Balance.

Speaking of games, I loved this handheld for mobile devices from Gamesir, and hopefully will get to report on it soon.

Electrica Meccanica had their Solo Car on display inside. I am told that they drove it in, and this fully electric vehicle is so skinny that i believe it, don’t you?

This particular robot by Somnox is one you can sleep with. Yes, that sounds a little bad, but it has this comfortable breathing thing going on that reminds me of snuggling next to a dog on a lonely night.

Here’s some Tough Tested products that I hope to review here in the near future.

Uh, here’s a robot. I saw a lot of these at CES this year.

Nothing I like more than some interlocking triangles that can literally brighten up a room.

Yes, that is me, petting a duck. Aflac had this display where they are creating these toy ducks to help kids with cancer. I will report on that later, but I was so glad that I could pet this duck. After years of feeding them bread and never touching them, I finally had my chance. There are some things that technology cannot provide, as nature does.

CES 2018 with China Tech First Look

There is more that goes on at CES than what is shown on the floor. There are after-parties, not to mention the before-parties. I was fortunate enough to attend CES Unveiled 2018, and I was just as pleased to attend China Tech First Look the next day.

I always look forward to seeing new technology, particularly ones that I have never encountered before. I was not disappointed with what I saw here.

I’ll go ahead and start with these. This is the Honeycomb, and they are magnetic blocks that can be programmed. It is part of a STEAM initiative, which stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics. Most people just use STEM.

These are some interesting electric locks from WeLock, which are clearly going to be the new standard as far as what will be on your door. They are fully programmable, even from a distance on your phone.

Welcome to a new age of electronic bikes. The Smartcircle S1 has an unusual shape, and I got to drive it down the halls of the Flamingo Hotel. It was as fun as it sounds, but there is a bit of a learning curve on the ride.

Now here is an interesting microphone ready for taking on just about anything, as it is from Sabinetek.

This is quite something. It is a device that allows you to put a picture of anything on a fingernail. I’m not talking about making a fake nail, but putting an image on the nail using a very fine sticker.

If you don’t believe it works, check out this self-portrait on my hand.

I’m not certain what I’m going to write about tomorrow, but it will be certain that it will appear at CES 2018.

First Day at CES 2018, after CES Unveiled

Yesterday was quite a tough day for me. After getting a flight at 6:00 AM and landing in Las Vegas by noon, there was a lot of moving around with “hurry up and wait”.

As you can see from this great shot taken from Mandalay Bay, we are in Las Vegas now. (Thanks to Dan Feinberg for the use of this shot.)

Technically, CES 2018 does not start until tomorrow, but if you arrive two days early, there is an event for the press known as CES Unveiled where you can experience a small percentage of the companies that will be represented there.

This would be L’entrance. I’ll try and show you how big this room at the Mandalay Bay (yes, the one from the shooting) actually was.

Ah, this should give you a better idea of what it was like. Lots of companies represented in rows, with places for folks to congregate in the middle, and tables for food.

Oh, here’s some samples of the food. There is some eggplant caviar in there, and yes, it was worth the trip just to get it.

But enough about food, lets get to the companies. I can’t remember what the name of this company was, but they invented a way of turning ordinary water into mineral water by hitting it with radiation. Yes, I checked, and it is harmless.

This company has a weird name with “Teach on Mars”, but it is an application that if you give it facts, it will quiz you back on them. Very cool.

Here is a company that allows for making postcards with selfies. You can add a filter to make you into a cop or something.

I have seen a lot of companies that focus on monitoring your water. Most of them have an app associated with them, and this Flo is able to really figure out where leaks are.

If you look closely, you can see that these headphones have some weird thing attached to them. These are for monitoring your brain. I think brain-monitoring devices are going to be kind of a thing here in the near future, and I’ll check in on them at CES 2019.

This is an interesting device that I am told can be made for homeopathic medicines and such, including cannabis. I’m guessing that I am going to see a lot of devices like these in the future.

This is a wine rack that you can program, so it will light up on whatever bottle that you are looking for. It was made by French, and I so a lot of French companies at CES Unveiled, and I have a hunch that I will be seeing more.

Now this I just loved. What you are seeing here is the Lovebox, and it has an 8-bit Legend of Zelda heart (or whatever else you want) on the front that spins when you get a message. When you open it up, you will see the personalized message. I like tech that thinks outside the box and inside of it at the same time.

These guys were great. If you had a photo, they could put it on a T-shirt in seconds. This is the type of tech that you go to CES to see, and it is practical, too!

Then there is stuff like this. This is Sniffy, which will allow you to smell what you are watching. I’ve seen this before, and I’ve never seen it come to odoriferous fruition. Good luck with this.

The guy showing this off sure was proud. These are Debussy headphones, and they are quite advanced, and they even have a screen on the earcup. It is quite something, and at one heck of a high price.

This company has made a drone that can go underwater. Now, if you are able to make it go above the water (in the air) that would be something.

This is some awesome technology from a company known as BrainCo. Yeah, I had to get me some video footage, as I like the idea that limbs can be replaced artificially.

Here’s a cool ice sculpture for you. We’ll have more from CES later.

We’re Going to Las Vegas for CES 2018!

Well, I have been taking a few weeks off after recovering from the holidays and all the stuff that I have been reviewing before that time. There are some other reasons why I have been off, but I don’t want to get into that at this time.

The thing is that last year was tough, as I had to skip CES 2017. If you are not familiar with CES, it is the Consumer Electronics Show where all the big electronics companies show off what they have to offer for the year. It happens in the first full week of January, always in Las Vegas at the Convention Center, the Venetian, and various other places in the city.

Tomorrow, I am heading out on a flight to Las Vegas, and the first event that I will attend is known as CES Unveiled, which is made for the press. I’m hoping that I can get in on whatever is going to be a game-changer, tech-wise.

My Inbox is getting so full of people requesting that I come visit their particular booth. This week is one where I work the hardest, and I spend the rest of the next few months reporting on the companies that I find.

Yes, I am greatly looking forward to it, and I look forward on getting back to you with CES 2018 news.