by Lori Cunningham
I have just returned from what I deem as the best trade show of the year…the Consumer Electronics Show in Vegas. Once again, this year’s show was the largest during its 45 year history with over 1.92 million net square feet of exhibit space, beating its previous record from last year of 1.86 million net square feet. That’s a lot of space! CES took up the entire Las Vegas Convention center plus several floors of the Venetian conference room space. There were more than 3,250 exhibitors and over 20,000 new products were introduced.
With all of this space you’d think there’s plenty of room, but with over 150,000 people attending, it was very crowded. Armed with two of my favorite tools, my Striiv pedometer and Samsung Galaxy Camera, I was set and ready to take on the show. Besides a few snapshots here and there on my phone, most of the pictures of the show were taken on my new Samsung Galaxy Camera, which took excellent shots inside and out. I cannot begin to tell you how many people stopped me and asked me about the camera. The Samsung Galaxy Camera is unique because it’s the first fully Android camera…which is cool in itself…but it is also combined with a 16 MP camera with 21X Optical zoom. I can easily upload pictures to social networks with it or e-mail them. It has everything but a phone and comes with a SIM card for either Verizon or AT&T.
One of the highlights of my visit to CES was seeing Arianna Huffington and Deepak Chopra speak during a session on health and wellness. The panel members stressed that many health issues are avoidable with proper eating, exercise, and rest. We do not take enough time to care for ourselves and our bodies are paying the price. Arianna recently came out with a new free app to help people decrease their stress levels. It’s called GPS for the Soul. Interestingly enough, I learned that The Huffington Post has sleeping pods available at their office to help people take a little rest and feel refreshed. I think they’re on to something there!
As always, Intel has a dazzling display to add interest to their booth. The yellow lights are the screens of laptops twirling around in the twister. Intel showcases not only their products but other innovative companies who are using Intel processors to make new creative products for our connected world.
No CES is complete without a visit to the Ford Booth. This year they focused on their energy efficient cars and introduced MyEnergy Lifestyle which helps families reduce their electricity bills by integrating a plug-in car with smart appliance home technologies. In a surprise announcement, Ford announced that their Sync AppLink dash technology would be made open to encourage developers to make or integrate new apps. Expect to see many more apps available in the future for Sync AppLink. Glympse made an announcement that it would be included with Sync AppLink, allowing drivers to share their destination with others.
I love the innovativeness of some of the trade show booths. Here, Lifeproof incorporated their smartphone cases showing how they could be used or worn in different scenarios. After all the walking I did, somehow a hospital bed suddenly seemed comfortable! I tracked my steps during the week at Vegas on my Striiv pedometer and found that I walked 25.9 miles, that’s the distance a marathon!
OLED technology for TV’s is not new, it’s been around for a number of years. However, it’s always suffered because the economies of scale were small. But at the 2013 CES, OLED TV has grown up and sported sizes as large as 84 inches. OLED’s are the thinnest TV screens available and have a great color saturation. It’s hard to tell how thin these LG TV’s are, but they are thinner than a pencil…truly incredible.
The biggest “ahhhh” of the show were the 4K TV’s. 4K TV’s have a resolution of 3840 x 2160 (8.3 megapixels). Also known as Ultra High Definition, 4K has twice the vertical and horizontal resolution of our current, fixation, 1080p. The color and brightness is amazing. 4K was introduced at last year’s CES, but it’s fascinating to see it in production. As more 4K TV’s are created, costs will come down considerably. Remember when you first saw an HD TV and how impressive the colors and details were? Seeing a 4K TV for the first time is a similar experience. But it doesn’t end there. Companies are already working on 8K TV’s!
We all love the Segway, a super cool way to get around without walking. Now we have the SoloWheel, a new “people mover” device that gets you where you’re going…only faster. At 26 lbs., it comes with a handle to carry when not in use. The rechargeable battery lasts one hour and the SoloWheel can go as fast as 10mph. How much you ask? Well, speed comes at a cost of $1800.
CES did not disappoint with plenty of bling accessories to dazzle up your black, grey, or white phone. Available in every color, DEOS has a variety of iPhone cases and headphones to suit your whim. Only, these are real crystals folks, and the headphones will set you back $98 and many of the cases cost more than $300. Well, perhaps I won’t get one in every color to accessorize my outfit after all. Shucks.
I loved these phone cases. There are a large number of parents who give their kids their iPhone when they trade up for the latest version. Now kids can personalize their iPhones and iPod Touches with fun Lego designs. Kids can make a design and change it daily. These fun cases are called BrickCases and are made by SmallWorks. Cases retail for $24.99.
Not wanting to miss anything, I attended the Tech Fashion Show to see the latest in fashionable tech design. They showed a number of designs with LED embedded within the clothing. My favorite item was the collapsible baby stroller with a push of a button. Now that’s cool. This woman was not in the fashion show but one of a number of ladies sporting a tablet showing the fashions available on Zinio.
And now for the “now I’ve seen everything” category, I present to you the first iPad Potty. At first glance it’s absurd, ridiculous, preposterous. But as I began to think back to potty training my kids, I began to see the value. Trying to encourage your child to stay on the potty is torture for both you and him/her. Many moms give kids M&M’s to reward a success. The iPad potty can help your child stay for longer playing educational games and reward him/her for their efforts. I’m sure if we looked hard enough we’d find an app for potty training to boot!
I have hundreds of pictures to share with you, but I will save some of them for future articles. Every year the WellConnectedMom reports on our view of the top 5 trends from CES and the top products for Moms. Stay tuned, we have some pretty cool stuff to report on.
Interested in seeing pictures of CES from the past years?
If you went to CES or saw news highlights of the show, tells us what you saw or what your interests are. We’ll let you know if we saw anything at the show to give you more insight. More CES coverage to come!Tweet