Las Vegas is not just home to bright lights, glittering casinos and stunning coastlines. Every January it plays host to the International Consumer Electronics Show (commonly referred to as CES), which unveils a host of mind-blowing gadgets, clever updates and crazy concepts to the people. It’s an exciting display of imagination, creativity and competition, so what were the top five trends from CES 2014 and what can we expect throughout the coming year?
Convertibles and hybrid laptops
This year, the focus has moved away from desktop computers and traditional laptops and has moved towards convertibles and hybrid devices. That’s right, multinational technology companies such as Lenovo have unleashed an array of interesting products including the ThinkPad 8, which can be used as a tablet or slipped into the OneLink Pro Dock for a unique desktop experience. Lenovo’s Miix 2, a top-of-the-range Windows 8 hybrid has also got tongues wagging and is ideal for anyone looking for something that’s highly portable but has a slightly larger screen.
Gone are the days when bulky television sets where all the rage. Nowadays, even the giant cinema-style screens that decorate many a home seem somewhat out of date when you witness the stunning curved TVs unleashed by brands such as Samsung and LG. Of course, it might take some time until they’re affordable for mass consumption but the idea is not only innovative but exciting to say the least – particularly when you discover that some of the mock-ups can change from a flat screen to one with a curve with just a push of a button.
As technology advances, we expect bigger and better things, which could explain why many companies are keen to push their 4K TVs. The latest generation of ultra high-definition TV sets which boast four times the resolution of current HD TVs certainly made their mark at CES and held their own amongst the smart, curved devices on show. Furthermore, the price has come down over the past two years thanks to more manufacturers adopting the concept, which is great news for consumers.
Believe it or not, autonomous cars are starting to increase in popularity with BMW showing their latest driver-less car at CES. That’s right, thanks to an extremely clever system which includes a Lateral Control Unit and a Longitudinal Control Unit, the car can move like a dream and has the ability to steer, accelerate and brake, while the passengers just relax (or at least try to). Incredibly, BMW’s magnificent creation can also counter-steer to avoid the car doing a 180 on a slippery service. Impressive.
A market once dominated by Google Glass, wearable technology is set to take the world by storm in 2014 becoming more mainstream – and this seemed apparent at CES. With devices that can be worn on the wrist, arms, shoulder and head to name but a few, they’ve certainly captured the heart and minds of technology lovers and bring something a bit different to the industry. Many of the gadgets seen tend to be associated with health and fitness and can be connected to smartphones to enhance usability.
A New Year has welcomed a host of new inventions so keep your eye out for some of these creative products in stores near you throughout 2014.