Show Offs from CES 2018

The annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas has come and gone, but it left behind a look at some tech to get you excited for both the near- and long-term. Toyota imagined a future with what they are currently calling “e-Palettes,” which are self-driving, see-through vehicles that could be used to transport people and goods (such as pizza delivery) or even serve as a mobile office, hotel, or medical clinic. Somewhat closer to reality, but still not set for market, was LG’s TV that could be rolled up like a newspaper. But, if you are interested in devices that might make an impact later this year, these are some other highlights from the show.

Robot: It’s Back and Better Than Ever

Sony released its first robotic dog in 1999, but now the aibo is back and proved to be a hit at CES. This iteration of the autonomous entertainment robot can form an emotional bond with members of the household thanks to lifelike expressions and a dynamic array of movements. Additionally, in-built sensors allow aibo to detect words of praise, smiles, petting, and more—it can even learn and remember what actions make its owners happy.

Kitchen: Reimaging Above the Range

GE Appliances already changed the space above the oven once when it invented the over-the-range microwave—now it is at it again. The company’s industry-exclusive Kitchen Hub is a multifunctional, 27-inch smart screen equipped with both voice and gesture commands. Placed above the oven, it’s set at a comfortable viewing level. In terms of functions, the hub can be used for video calls, to see who is at the door (if you have a smart doorbell or security camera), view recipes, play music, and even take Instagram-ready pictures with its cooktop-facing camera.

TV: You’re Going to Need a Bigger Wall

Samsung redefined what it means to have a big-screen TV with the aptly named product, “The Wall.” This 146-inch TV uses MicroLED technology, which are much smaller than current LEDs and serve as their own source of light—eliminating the need for color filters or backlight. The screen will also be modular-based, which would allow consumers to adjust the size to fit their needs. As of now, there is no information about price or release date.

Smart Display: Sound is No Longer Enough

Amazon seems to have started a trend with the Echo Show. Several companies at CES unveiled their own home assistants combining speakers with a touchscreen display. One of which was the Lenovo Smart Display with Google Assistant. Similar to the Echo Show, though instead of Alexa, you just say “Hey Google” and ask about the weather, your schedule for the day, traffic, or whatever else you want to know. And with the screen you can watch YouTube videos, make video calls, manage connected devices, and more.

Fitness: Live Training—At Home

Peloton already introduced a home gym exercise bike with an attached screen that streams live or on-demand exercise classes. But now it is bringing that same tech to treadmills. The Peloton Tread ($3,995) offers high-energy, immersive workouts both on and off the treadmill that people can do in their own home at their own time. Peloton Members can participate in a variety of live and on-demand classes (including Run, Total Body, Floor, and Walk) that can be viewed on the Tread’s 32-inch HD touchscreen.

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