Scandinavian companies are often known for melding practical functions with striking, minimalist designs. Think Bang & Olufsen audio equipment or basically anything you can get at IKEA. At CES, we caught up with Libratone, a newer Danish company who are putting out some interesting products that espouse that same design philosophy.
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Technology has rattled many industries in recent years, even the fashion world. So as anyone could imagine combining the two is not a simple feat. However, when it comes to a name brand company such as Fossil Group, merging the two has proved to be only successful. Fossil Group’s focus and fashion design expertise has successfully launched over 40 new smartwatch hybrids across a few of their accessory brands including Fossil, Skagan, MisFit, Kate Spade and much more. The cool thing about these hybrid models is that they look and feel like traditional analog watches, because they don’t have typical smartwatch displays. Yet they count your steps, monitor your sleep and send notifications to your wrist. Just download the associated app with each different brand and see your activity data. Our CES 2017 crew stopped by Fossil Group to learn more about their new fashion forward smartwatches. Watch the video to see just how they work!
Since the debut of the first mass-market OLED TVs by LG a few years ago, the entire industry has been waiting for a second major player to start implementing the technology into their high-end TV lines. Sony had previously shown an OLED concept at CES, but it never made it to market. This year, they came out with guns blazing, revealing a new OLED set that just might be the most beautiful TV we’ve ever seen. Meet the the Sony Bravia OLED A1E:
Hisense has not historically been a household name in the USA (they actually refer to themselves as “The biggest 4K TV company you’ve never heard of”), and what products did bear their logo were often looked at as inferior options. In recent years, the Chinese mega-corporation has been working to change that. In 2015, they shook up the TV industry by acquiring Sharp’s North and South American TV business and branding rights. And they’ve continued to work on their product line, putting out TVs that are more competitive with models from the major manufacturers. We stopped by Hisense’s CES area to see some of the products they were spotlighting and found an intriguing selection, some ready to hit the market and some still in the prototype stage.
First up were the Hisense H10D TVs, which will be the company’s flagship sets. Available in 70-inch and 75-inch models, these sets are packed with premium features, including UHD Alliance and THX certifications, quantum-dot technology, Motion 480 processing for ultra-smooth fast scenes, and full array local dimming which promises a stellar contrast ratio.
We saw plenty of great new products at Sony’s CES display, including a pair of standout soundbars. First up is the Sony M500 soundbar, a small soundbar that packs a big punch. More style-conscious than the typical soundbar (when was the last time you saw one that wasn’t black?), the Sony M500 is available in charcoal and cream versions, colors that will better blend into the typical family room decor. A slim subwoofer will be easier to hide in a corner, or even under the sofa. Of course, the M500 is also packed with high-tech features: built-in Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, an ARC HDMI input, the ability to play Hi-Res audio files, and easy integration with Google Home.
ASUS is one of the most popular computer and computer component manufacturers in the world, and for good reason. They produce just about every type of component or accessory available, in addition to phones, tablets, monitors, and complete desktops and laptops. While many of their products are intended for the mainstream audience, ASUS is also strongly devoted to the PC gaming community. The ASUS Republic of Gamers—or ROG—sub-brand features a product line stacked with ultra-high-end tech designed specifically for the most demanding gamers.
We spent some time with ASUS at CES 2017 to learn about their newest ROG gaming laptop offerings, which pack desktop power and features into (mostly) portable PCs.
First up, we have the ASUS ROG Strix GL553 and GL753, a pair of entry-level gaming rigs. Inside either laptop, you’ll find the latest Intel Core i7 Kaby Lake processors, for overall speedy performance. The GL553 sports a 15-inch screen, while the GL753 has a 17-inch display, and the laptops will be available with either an Nvidia GTX 1050 or GTX 1050 ti GPU. While not the fastest mobile GPUs around, these new cards will still perform respectably even with today’s AAA games. ASUS emphasizes that while great for gaming, the GL553 and GL753 also make perfect all-around productivity machines.
Belkin has long been one of the top names in technology accessories, creating products that make it easier to use your tablet, computer, smartphone or other devices. At CES Unveiled, we got a closer look at some of their new accessories for 2017. While the selection was iPhone-heavy, Belkin does also have non-iOS options for most of these accessories in the pipeline. While it may seem like there’s only so much innovation a company can do with a power cable or phone case, Belkin has thought of some clever improvements to each.
Check out the DuraTek Lightning cable, which is wrapped in DuPont Kevlar fabric (the stuff used to make bulletproof vests), built to withstand 5000+bend cycles and equipped with a laser-welded connector that withstands over 40 lbs of force. It very well may be the last Lightning cable you ever buy.
SpeedX wasn’t the only company at CES 2017 bringing smart technology to the world of two wheels. At CES Unveiled, we got a look at the Cosmo Connected smart brake lights. Designed for a motorcycle helmets—but adaptable to some bicycle helmets—the Cosmo Connected is an auxiliary brake light meant to be worn on the back of the rider’s helmet. In this position, the extra-bright light is at eye-level for other motorists on the road, making them more aware of the rider’s position. In addition to operating like a normal brake light—getting brighter as the rider stops—the Cosmo Connected can be set to constant flashing, or extra visibility.
For years, bicycle computers have been getting smarter and smarter, adding options like wireless data transmission and GPS tracking, and integrating with a bike’s drivetrain to track gearing and power output. There are countless options on the market, offering increasing levels of features and complexity. The new SpeedX Unicorn smart road bike simplifies everything by baking those features right into the bicycle itself. And if you’re worried about a tech-company focusing on gadgetry instead of bike performance, fret not. The SpeedX Unicorn is a high-tech machine built from the ground up to go toe-to-toe with top-tier racing bikes from the most well-known brands.
The seminal sci-fi comedy Back to the Future II was responsible for two of the greatest fantasies of the late 20th Century: the Cubs winning the World Series, and shoes that lace themselves. We were lucky enough to see that first wish finally come to fruition this fall, and after our visit with Digitsole, it looks like the second one has arrived as well. Digitsole has been making waves at CES for the past few years, first getting rave reviews on their Warm Series of heated insoles back in 2015. This year, Digitsole displayed a full complement of connected shoes.