Top 8 Coolest Tech Ideas at CES 2018

by: Gina Abbas

The Consumer Electronics Show is a global event that was founded and has been hosted by the Consumer Technology Association for the last 50 years. Technology companies from all over the world travel to take part in this four day gathering where they can showcase their latest innovations. More than 3,900 companies participate and there are more than 170,000 attendees from 150 countries. Product and market categories include:

GamingAutomotiveHealth & WellnessHome & FamilyInternet of ThingsProduct Design & ManufacturingRobotics & Machine IntelligenceSportsStartups

This year, the show began on January 9th in Las Vegas and had over 1.2 thousand speakers. Notable companies that participated include Ford, Google, Samsung, LG, & ADT. Read below for TechFarms’ top eight picks of the coolest ideas and gadgets unveiled at CES 2018.

8. Google Assistant Added to Android Auto

Google announced that they have plans to make its assistant available to Android users inside their cars. Previously, people have been able to command Google Assistant to only do a voice search through Android Auto. Now, Assistant for Android Auto will be able to control your smart home, play music, get directions, send and receive texts.

7. Pet Robots

Though not completely new to the market, pet robots are a fascinating addition to the toy tech industry and are have the potential to be a huge market due to the lack of maintenance required when compared to animals. Several were put on display this year, including one from Sony that costs $1,700. Sony’s pet robot dog, Aibo, was first introduced in the 1990’s, but has since been revamped into a remarkable piece of technology. Notable features include OLED eyes, personality development, facial recognition, and tricks. Aibo even remembers the person who pets it the most and interacts with that person above others.

6. 5G Networks 

“5G” is the “Fifth Generation” of wireless broadband technology and was announced and discussed by the major wireless companies. 5G cellular technology is expected to be m 10 to 100 times faster than 4G, improve security, and cut responsiveness delays. Samsung executive, Tim Baxter, compared 5G to “putting fiber optic cabling into your pocket”. While 5G was discussed at length by major technology and mobile companies, the hardware isn’t quite complete to support it and we may not see 5G networks launch until 2019.

5. Samsung’s 146-inch TV

Samsung is calling it “The Wall”. The world’s first consumer Modular MicroLED 146-inch TV, was the standout product at Samsung’s annual “First Look” exhibit. It is a self emitting TV with micrometer LEDs that serve as their own source of light. This technology eliminates color filters and backlighting and outperforms others of its level in definition. The modular design lets consumers choose the shape and size of their TV, with the most impressive being the incredible wall size display.

4. Toyota Minibus

Named the “e-Palette”, this pod like minibus was the highlight of Toyota’s exhibit at this years CES, with plans to release them at the Tokyo Summer Olympics in 2020. It is fully electric and autonomous and completely customizable; ideas range from delivery vehicles, to food trucks, to mobile shops, to group ride-sharing vehicles. Companies that have already expressed interest in the concept car include Amazon, Mazda, Pizza Hut, and Uber.

3. Air Taxi

Although these have been tested by another big name company in Dubai, this air taxi concept from Bell Helicopter may actually be brought to fruition. Uber plans to partner with NASA in order to to launch its “air taxi” service in Los Angeles in 2020. This autonomous taxi will hold up to four passengers and will be available on demand with a plethora of impressive features, including wifi, artificial intelligence, built in video calling, and wireless charging. Bell stated that its new design will not only shorten travel time, but also let them better utilize that time that is normally spent behind the wheel.

2. Self-Propelled Suitcase Robot

Thought up by a company called Forward-X, this innovative product seeks to simplify traveling by having your suitcase follow you around. The camera on the front of the device tracks your movements and is able to follow behind you at a maximum speed of 7mph. The wristband that accompanies it allows you to be alerted if the bag cannot sense you in order to prevent loss or theft.

1. Laser Printer That Etches Onto Just About Anything

Startup company, Glowforge, debuted this product in 2015, but announced at this year CES that they would finally be releasing its own line of materials that are specifically formulated for its printer. The company raised almost $30 million dollars during a record breaking crowd-funding campaign and has seen success ever since its launch. Thousands of pre-ordered machines have already been delivered and consumers have given it glowing reviews, noting its ease of use and lack of learning curve. The printer itself users lasers to create products out of materials such as wood, leather, acrylic, paper, and fabric. The proofgrade materials line solves the problem of finding the specific materials needed to print and allows for perfect, automatic settings each time you use it.

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