Each year, hundreds of thousands of attendees flock to Las Vegas to attend the Consumer Electronics Show (CES). This world-renowned exhibition features the latest innovations from thousands of companies on the global stage, with some being more surprising than others.
So, what’s in store for the future of technology? We’ve rounded up all of the gadgets and electronic breakthroughs that inspired us from January’s exhibition for your viewing pleasure. Let’s dive right in!
Would you visit a restaurant staffed by robot waiters? What if those waiters were also adorable cats? Meet the BellaBot, a food delivery robot with a difference. Its interactive touch screen not only serves as an interface to confirm which shelf to take your order from, it also features an animated cat face to give the BellaBot some personality. You can even pat it on the head to confirm you’ve received your meal. Watch the BellaBot in action here.
This new project from tech giant Samsung isn’t tangible: it’s the name of a new Artificial Intelligence (AI) project to create life-like “artificial humans” called Neons. Neons go far beyond the capabilities of most AI services available today, with digital likenesses of humans that can speak, emote, and learn from different experiences. However, the company says that Neons are not intended to be all-knowing digital assistants like Apple’s Siri. Each Neon will have a different look and personality, with intended purposes such as teachers, salespersons, life coaches, financial advisors, and more. If the finished product is able to live up to the hype of the concept, it could be a game-changer for the service industry.
What if you could hold a device in your hand that would automatically detect and apply the perfect amount of moisturiser, serum and colour correction to your skin? That’s exactly the concept behind Opte, the first handheld inkjet printer designed to “print” on human skin. The device contains a tiny camera and blue LED lights to detect and correct freckles, scars and hyperpigmentation, even ones that are so small that the human eye might miss it! The cartridges used in the Opte won’t come cheap (about US$100 a pop) but if the product can nix product waste and guarantee perfect application every time, it might just be worth it.
Geeks who grew up watching the likes of Gundam should get excited, because we’re getting that much closer to being able to pilot giant robot suits. The Guardian XO is a full-body, powered exoskeleton that can allow an operator to safely lift and manipulate objects up to 90kg with very little effort. The product has the potential to revolutionise the safety and ergonomics of industries with lots of heavy lifting such as warehouses, manufacturing and construction. You can watch a beta test here.
With fuel prices climbing, people are always looking for more energy-efficient modes of transport, however the humble bicycle often doesn’t cut it when you have passengers or bulky cargo. Enter the Wello Family, a compact, bike-car mashup with a solar panel built into the roof. This lean, green transport machine can cart two adults or one adult and two children, or the back seat can be converted to a storage trunk.
Those who’ve been unlucky enough to suffer from a stroke will know that recovery is no picnic. Physical rehabilitation is often boring and monotonous, but the team at Neofect are looking to change that with their new Smart Balance system. Users stand on a sensor plate and wear a chest harness to track their leg movements, balance and posture, then complete exercises in the form of video games. For example, one game has players moving their feet to the beat of a song, and another has them learning to control an aeroplane. It’s a lot more mentally engaging that regular physical therapy, and the software automatically generates progress reports for healthcare providers and patients.
The Virtual Visor could change the way we drive. If you’ve ever driven your car at certain times of the day when the sun seems to be at an extra eye-poking angle, you’ll know all about the dangers of glare. However, we can’t exactly block out our entire windscreens: we need to see! So what if we had a transparent visor teamed up with a smart camera that could track the position of our eyes and effectively block out glare without obscuring your vision of the road? Sounds good! You can check out the pitch here.
Sometimes, tech is better when it works behind the scenes. Smart locks allow keyless entry to a door without your phone, but they’re often very conspicuous. The Level Lock can’t be seen once it’s installed, because it replaces the guts of your existing deadbolt. This means you can keep using your existing keys if you prefer, but also reap the benefits of a smart lock. In addition to keyless entry, the Level Lock features remote unlocking with Apple HomeKit or Siri voice control, auto-locking when the door stays open too long, and more. Best of all, the battery should last you a full year!
Did anything at CES 2020 catch your eye? Tell us about it in the comments.
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