The ongoing annual CES in Las Vegas is all about cutting-edge technology
Last year, Samsung showcased The Wall Micro LED display and talked about how it could be customised to any size or aspect ratio. This year, things have moved a notch higher. “This screen is customisable and can be placed anywhere in the home. If we add new modules to this 75-inch screen, the display can be scaled up to 80 or 90 inches,” Jonghee Han, president of visual display business at Samsung Electronics, said as he took the wraps off the 75-inch flat screen. The modular nature of Micro LED translates into flexibility of screen size. By adding modules, users can expand the display. It’s bezel-free, which means there are no borders between modules, resulting in a seamless effect. In theory, the technology will be able to deliver perfect blacks, perfect brightness and a wide HDR colour palette. To every module, there are two pieces. The first is the back plate, which has hooks that can easily attach to other modules. The second part is the actual display part which simply latches onto that backplate magnetically.
If only a Fitbit never needed charging! Matrix Industries’ PowerWatch 2 uses solar and thermoelectric charging, that is, it’s powered in part by body heat. There is also intelligent heart rate monitoring capabilities, onboard GPS and a full-colour display.
Harley-Davidson is finally ready to put its LiveWire electric motorcycle on the road in August for a hefty $29,799. Hitting 60mph takes 3.5 seconds and a high-voltage battery allows incredible acceleration. Equipped with a telematics system called H-D Connect, it’s easy to gather information about the bike’s operations, like battery charging and service reminders. But electric won’t mean sacrificing the distinctive rumble. Harley says LiveWire is designed to produce “a new signature Harley-Davidson sound as it accelerates”.
No loafing around
CES is home to surprises and Wilkinson Baking Company offered one with its BreadBot, an autonomous robot that bakes 10 loaves per hour. Thanks to the many sensors on the machine, it can mix, knead and bake. It can make just about any kind of loaf you want, including whole wheat, honey oat and rye. Of course, the machine targets major grocery stores and not individual homes.
Making the Apple Watch S4 a winner is how it can record heartbeat and rhythm using its electrical heart sensor. Withings, which is one of the early tech companies to work on health and fitness devices, has come up with the $129 Move that can do the same. It’s a regular-looking analogue watch but it can record electrocardiogram. Fifty-metre water resistant, it can also measure steps and sleep, tracks elevation, has a one-year battery life and it can connect with Apple Health and Google Fit.
Walk ’n’ roll
Hyundai is innovating with the Elevate, a blend of car, robot and Mars rover. The conventional four wheels on a car have been replaced with robotic legs that can cover any terrain, regardless of the surface texture. Dubbed the Ultimate Mobility Vehicle, when the legs are folded, it can travel like a normal car but when it raises to full height, it can replicate walking patterns.
LG’s latest OLED TV puts a topspin on the traditional TV experience with the 65-inch Signature OLED TV R that can roll up and out of a box that also houses speakers. And it rolls out of sight when you are not watching, allowing you to use the TV’s speakers to listen to music. In fact, when the screen is rolled up, the TV appears like some minimalist furniture. And don’t worry about the unrolled screen because it looks stiff and solid; there are no wrinkles. According to LG, the TV has been tested to 50,000 rolls up or down, meaning it should last 17 years if it is turned on or off eight times a day. Best part of the deal is that the OLED TV R could be available as early as this year.
The size and weight of gaming laptops have changed over the years. But in way of form factor, things remain the same. The Asus ROG Mothership is like a Microsoft Surface but it’s meant for gaming. The device has a detachable keyboard, a huge 17.3-inch screen with its own kickstand. Inside are chips from Intel and Nvidia. It makes a lot of sense to flip a gaming laptop on its side, since dissipating heat is the biggest challenge. When the device is kept vertical, heat doesn’t get trapped between the keyboard and the desk.
Change is the key
Nemeio, a new brand from French tech company LDLC, has an E Ink keyboard that can be customised key by key. You can modify the characters on the key as you wish: QWERTY, AZERTY, in French, Spanish with the shortcuts of your favourite software. You can even customise the keyboard to make it work with your favourite apps. Connecting via Bluetooth, the keyboard uses a backlit e-paper display, which is easy on the eye; one can even magnify the letters on the keys and control the light intensity. The keyboard comes with a long-lasting battery and easily slips into most bags.
On-demand hot water
You want a cup of tea and right away; but you have to wait for the water to heat up. Heatworks plans to change that with the Duo Carafe, a battery-operated hot water carafe that filters and heats water instantly as you pour. Just fill the Duo with cool water and set the temperature you desire. The water poured from the device will be plus or minus one degree of your selected temperature. This means filling up a mug, soup bowl or even a baby’s bottle would be super easy.