Last week Vegas was packed with all things tech for the annual Consumer Electronics Show. You could expect to see endless trends with drones, virtual reality, robotics, wearables, baby tech, and family tech to improve your life living in the 21st century. It has become hard to image life without some of these items. Take your daily routine to the next level with these tech must-haves that you can trust. Below are my top picks from CES.
Owlet Smart Sock
Owlet has been perfecting a baby wearable for the past couple years, and we all have been patiently waiting. The Owlet retails for $249 and available through their site. It’s the only monitor that uses hospital technology called pulse oximetry. Owlet is for newborns up to a year and a half, and designed to alert you if your baby stops breathing. The base station connects directly to the smart sock and acts as the primary alarm. No Wi-Fi needed! -My favorite part! It is so hard to find wearables for baby and children that will not fail due to “being in range” of the wearable device. With Owlet you can check on precious baby anywhere in real time, weather you are in another room or out on a date. I believe that Owlet will become the next must-have item to leave the hospital with baby next to an infant car seat and clothes.
Must we talk to babies? A question the creators of Starling answered when they made an education wearable for you to track and analyze the words your little one hears each day. Starling comes with 3 interchangeable attachment options to hang near baby or toddler, clip on clothing, or attach to a strap. You can rest on base station to charge. The Starling uses incredibly smart algorithms to analyze your dialog and post analytics so that you can check up on how you’re doing. For example, saying “Hello, Hello, Hello” achieves a word count, and “Hello, how are you today?” achieves a higher level of engagement. It also improves the early stages of brain development which happens during the first 5 years of life. Take your daily parenting routine to the next level by easily including Starling in your child’s life. You will be happy knowing your baby is on their way to a brighter future. Starling is currently available through pre-order for a discounted price of $169 on their site.
The EHang 184 human-sized drone was unveiled this year at CES 2016 and is catching quite the buzz for it’s No Pilot feature and estimated price tag. That’s correct, the EHang 184 will fly by itself. The Chinese company created the single passenger drone in hopes to make transportation convenient and easy for a person that doesn’t have a pilot license. You enter in the cabin to pick your quick destination on a 12 inch touchscreen tablet, and the rest is left to the 184. The life-size drone is 100% green technology, and is powered by electricity only. A full charge will take about 2-4 hours giving the rider 23 minutes of flight time. Some features include temperature controls, a reading light, a small trunk for a 16 inch bag, and a downward-facing camera to see what’s going on beneath it. The estimated price tag is $200,000 – $300,000. For this amount of money I would like to see the flight time increase to at least 45 minutes and a drink cooler installed since it is self-flying… at least the drink cooler.
RoBoHoN by Sharp
Sharp announced fall 2015 that they were making RoboHon, an adorable eight-inch-high robot phone. I had the pleasure of meeting this little guy during CES, and cannot wait to get my hands on one later this year! A set tag price has not been announced. The robot phone features a 2-inch screen on the back and a camera / projector built into its face. RoBoHoN walks, talks, dances, and connects to LTE. And also does basic phone functions like call, text, and send e-mails. RoboHoN has a personality and wants to recognize you by face and voice. He will ask you to smile to capture a picture or let you know when you have a new message. The perfect friend that you will want to take with you everywhere you go.
Zeiss is known for their light and scanning microscopes and imaging systems for professional applications. It is not to my surprise that they would tap into the virtual reality space, which seemed to be one of the biggest trends at CES this year besides drones. They showcased Zeiss VR One that works with a cell phone display, much similar to Google Cardboard. With an estimated price tag of $120, it features glass lenses and the option of purchasing a smartphone mounting tray to fit your phone. Those will sell for about $12.99. You can purchase here. VR One works with most models of drones like DJI, and is currently working to expand their portfolio. When not using the VR One to pair to your drone’s camera when flying, you have the option to do something else! It’s compatible with a number of VR apps available in the Google Play and Apple iOS store.
DJI is a Chinese technology company and the market leader of easy-to-fly drones and aerial photography systems. They have played a big part in building the world of the future for the past 10 years and their drones have become an industry standard. The DJI booth was packed at CES and Phantom 3 4K, New 4K Flying Camera was center stage with live flying demos. Price tag $999 but it’s on sale for 20% off at $799 Buy Here. Some features are Wi-Fi video downlink, GPS & vision positioning System, hoover mode, and you can fly indoors. My only stipulation is that this unit lacks having the ultra-quick GPS lock, no HD video feed to your device with a 0.75 mile range compared to 3 mile range found in Phantom 3 Professional (Retail $1,259). It’s not a Big deal depending if you are using Phantom 3 4K for work or pleasure, it still takes amazing images and is a great product. Now it’s up to your imagination how you fly.
De Rigueur, a French luxury brand that is taking fashion and technology to a whole new level with tech bags and phone cases. As you know, this was a gem for me to find as I came from the fashion industry, and a new company launch always makes me tickled. They guarantee their creations by using very fine leather and all products are handmade, made to order in France by their craftsmen. Their first collection is non-tech and available from their site as they are based in France. Collection 2, which was showcased at CES will feature a charging solution for your tech devices with an integrated charging pad solution into each bag and phone case. Simply drop in your phone into the Connected Sleeve phone pouch, and it starts changing! No wires or carrying those bulky portable chargers anymore. The Fashion Tech brand will also be making carry bags. Good news is that they will ship worldwide and planning to sell in the United States. Stay tuned with me for further details.
Only one hand needed here to hold the Ozobot, the tiny smart robot that fits in your hand. Coding and STEM education is made easy with the games and apps that Ozobot offers for children up to adults. Users have the option to play OzoBlocky, a block-based visual editor that gives you the digital power to fully control Ozobot’s movement and behavior though the App. Or grab some color markers and have fun creating code commands in the form of basic color combinations to experience creative drawing, problem solving, and group challenges. Every Ozobot comes with DIY skins that you can customize and get artsy with. Recently, they launched accessory packs to enhance your gaming experience with added tools to help you complete the challenges. Anyone can download or print the OzoCode challenges for free from their website. Now is the time to participate with code and teach 21st century skills.
For the 5th year in a row Razer has won Best of CES in gaming, and also won The People’s Choice Best of CES 2016. Razer’s Blade Stealth laptop is a brilliant idea that combines a high-end gaming notebook that can also serve as your everyday laptop. It is designed to bring with you wherever you go when you feel like have a powerful gaming PC, just plug into the core dock to get the processing power you need to play. Razer’s Blade Stealth is offered in 4 configurations ($999 to $1,599) with my favorite, 4K/UHD panel version. It is Chroma enabled (easy inter-device way to sync up all Chroma-enabled devices) with integrated lighting tech, about 16.8 million colours! May I add that the Blade Stealth features the world’s first individually backlit keyboard. But of course it’s the inside that matters, with Intel Core i7-6500U Dual-Core Processor (2.5/3.1GHz), Intel HD Graphics 520, and 8GB Dual-Channel RAM (LPDDR3-1866MHz). That’s a whole lot of high definition gaming! Yay Razer!
Samsung Portable SSD T3
Samsung continued to outdo themselves this year when it came to SSD technology. Samsung Portable SSD T3 offers up to 2TB of storage in a device the size of a business card and weighs less than two ounces. The Portable SSD T3 is up to 4X faster than traditional external hard drives and compatible with USB 3.1 and USB 2.0. Your old external hard drive might become jealous when it sees the ultra-fast data transfer speed of up to 450Mbps and included AES 256-bit hardware encryption. I love it for that reason alone! The Samsung Portable SSD T3 will be launched in February 2016. For more information visit this link.
Thank you for letting me show you some technology highlights of CES 2016.
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Congrats to the Baby Industry for officially making its stamp at CES with Baby Tech and Kids Technology on the show floor. Hurray!