Since 1967, the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) kicks off the year in consumer electronics and technology products every January in Las Vegas. This year we scoured the nine venues of CES 2017 to bring you the most banging tech products of the year. “Banging” is any permutation of cool, awesome, innovative, high-end, useful, trendsetting, and wow, how come no one’s thought of it before.
- LG Signature W OLED TV
Toward its goal of making organic light-emitting diode (OLED) the next generation technology of large-screen televisions, LG broke the $2000 price barrier last year with an entry-level 55” OLED TV. This year LG introduced the Signature W OLED TV for another purpose – to take our breath away! Available in 65” and 77” models, W is dubbed Wallpaper for its hang-on-the-wall design. Both models are so light that they can attach to walls as flimsy as plastic and glass with the supplied magnetic brackets (which add only 4mm protrusion to the 0.2” thin TV frame). Audio and video connections are handled by a soundbar that comes standard. It is an upward-firing high-end soundbar equipped with the latest 4k UHD video upscaling and Dolby Atmos audio processing.
- Monoprice Delta Mini 3D Printer
3D printers have a way of looking as if they were made in someone’s garage. The cheap ones further give the impression they might fall apart if we as much as yelled at them, except the ones made by value leader Monoprice. This year Monoprice once against pushed the affordability envelope with the $149 Delta Mini 3D printer. At this combination of quality and low cost, there is little excuse left for designers and hobbyists not to take the plunge and invest in a 3D printer to better visualize their ideas and creations.
- Toyota Concept-i Future Car
The Concept-i is Toyota’s take on a car of the future. It is pretty out there but not as far out there as the other future cars at CES 2017 that threatened to make the cars in Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World appear tame. The Concept-i is a smart car and its user interface is Yui with continuous learning capability. The wheels are integrated into the chassis and the single wide windscreen gives the driver an unobstructed field of vision.
- Soraa Helia Smart Light Bulbs
Lighting company Soraa showed off its Helia smart LED light bulbs. These light bulbs automatically adjust the emission of different light colors according to the time of day. As a day progresses, blue light is gradually cut down with a skew toward violet light. This manipulation of light is believed to benefit the eyes and aid with nighttime sleep. There’s an optional Smart Snap feature that can turn on the light bulb at the detection of people in a room.
- Focal Utopia by Tournaire Headphones
The Focal Utopia by Tournaire is an impressive statement of designer jewelry and the world’s most expensive headphones. Focal is one of the world’s most respected manufacturers of high-end speakers and Philippe Tournaire is a French jeweler extraordinaire, and when they come together, jaw-dropping fireworks are produced to the tune of $120,000 for a pair of Utopia by Tournaire headphones. This is amazing stuff with gold and diamonds and Focal’s proprietary Beryllium speaker drivers.
- Willow Breast Pumps
The relatively low-key Willow breast pumps generated one of the biggest buzz at CES. They are hands-free, cordless and almost noiseless breast pumps that insert into a mother’s bra for unobtrusive pumping on the go! They are FDA-approved and dishwasher safe. Everything is too good to be true save for the rather steep retail price of $429 a pair.
- Mohu AirWave
America has just about the best programming of free TV in the world. While many countries have moved their major sporting events to pay TV, Americans continue to enjoy the Super Bowl, World Series, NBA and Stanley Cup Finals on free TV broadcasts. This is the best country for cord cutters and the $149.99 Mohu AirWave is the best device toward that end, with one-stop wireless access to free broadcasts and streaming content.
- Sleep Number 360 Smart Bed
At the spacious Sleep Number display in Sands Expo and Convention Center, many people were very curious about the 360 Smart Bed that can measure the sleeper’s biometrics and predict the onset of snoring for auto-calibration of sleep numbers in various sections of the bed, but few were brave or willing enough to try it. The thick memory foam top is supposed to be so comfortable that the sleeper can feel the blood pressure calming, and when the bed begins to adapt, it’s been compared to going to heaven. What’s more, this miraculous bed can even warm the sleeper’s feet! Better not find out the price. Just hope that one day everybody might be able to afford one.
- Ewaybot MoRo Robot Assistant
MoRo is a robotic assistant by Chinese robotics company Ewaybot Technology. The product displayed was a prototype with a proposed selling price of $30,000 but yet without an official production date. This version stood 4 feet tall and tipped the scale at 77 pounds. Its cylindrical shape resembles a white fire hydrant or a rather petite R2-D2, complete with motion, voice recognition, and functioning arms. This will be great around my Liberty Village condo.
- Happiest Baby SNOO Smart Sleeper
The SNOO Smart Sleeper bassinet was all the rage back in October after appearances in the digital editions of The Daily Mail, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, and more. Three months later SNOO came to Las Vegas to demonstrate to CES-goers its awesome ability to soothe a crying baby with varying levels of white noise and rocking motion. Elimination of sleepless nights for parents and child may be worth its price of admission of $1,200.
This is all we have for now, but needless to say, it is nowhere near an exhaustive list. CES 2017 was a wild jungle in which one never knew what digital beasts might have lurked just around the corner.