Global TV Tech Buzz: CES 2013 Review


[twitter]The Consumer Electronics Show was held this week in Las Vegas. It is the annual show and shine of the best and brightest new gadgets manufacturers have planned for 2013. Big tvs, smart fridges, and assorted accessories and bizarre inventions were unveiled.

Here are the things you should really pay attention to from the show:

3D IS DEAD, LONG LIVE 3D

For the past few years at CES, the majority of the show floor for tv brands was devoted to 3D. This year, 3D was very absent as a highlight. For the past number of years you were handed glasses as you entered keynotes, brands fought over which mode of 3D rendering was best, but this year it seems to have fallen off the highlight reel. Sure, if you’re looking for a high end TV, you will most likely end up with one that is 3D, but it’s a trend that just hasn’t gained enough momentum for the manufacturers.

OLÉ! OLÉ! OLED!

Instead of 3D everyone is talking about OLED (organic light emitting diode). So when looking for a tv you now have plasma, LCD, LED, and OLED. An OLED display works without a backlight. It can display deep black levels and can be thinner and lighter than a liquid crystal display (LCD). Panasonic and Sony showed off a 56″ 4K OLED tv on the show floor that was just 1/2 an inch thick. It’s still a protoype, but the development of the product is showing that crisp, clear, rich images are more preferred by consumers than 3D. Samsung‘s entry to OLED was to show a curved display. This improves viewing angles around the room, but is just a prototype.

BIG ASS TV

There is always a race at CES to have the biggest tv on the block. This year, Samsung unveiled a 110 inch UHDTV. Price wasn’t revealed, but you can put it at north of the $20 000 that Sony and LG charge for their 84 inch models.

The “bigger is better” model has long been consistent at CES from tv manufacturers who now want consumers to think of a 60″ set as the smallest that will work in a home theatre. You’ll need to consider room size when buying your set, you should sit 7 1/2 feet away from a 60″ screen and 10 feet away from an 80″ one.

sony xperia zSMARTER SMARTPHONES

Sony Xperia Z raised a lot of eyebrows on the show floor as a sleek 5″ Android handset with a 13 megapixel camera. One of the demos featured the phone being answered in the shower as a way to prove it is waterproof. That is something we don’t need to Facebook, please.

Samsung also introduced the Youm, a plastic OLED screen that is bendable. This is the proof-of-concept sort of thing you see at CES where companies demonstrate the future of technology rather than a specific product.

THE BIZARRE AND THE WEIRD

Hapi Fork – slow down and enjoy your food. This fork will vibrate in your hand if you eat too quickly, the idea being that it takes 20 minutes for your brain to tell you that you’re full. The slower you eat, the better you’ll eat.

ipottyiPotty – an iPad stand with a potty attached. If you didn’t think kids had enough problems being drawn to technolgy, this one will drive you made. It’s an actual potty trainer for kids with a built in iPad stand so they can play potty games, and, perhaps sit on the potty longer for training without complaining.

Winbot – this is a robot that does windows. Roomba has revolutionized apartment vacuuming with their cute little robots. They even expanded to the Scooba which will mop or do pools. Now meet the Winbot, it sticks to your windows like Spider-Man and does them for you.

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