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Technology Today - February 2017 - More before the show

By Robert Sanborn

CES has so much to choose from that you have to pick and choose and so I put together a list of companies that I want to see what is new from them that can help me in my work but also the many people that I talk to with questions about computers and technology.

I visit Monster Cable because they often have a lot of cool things to show off and you never know who they bring to their press conference; some people really cool and there are others that you wonder what are you doing here? In the latter category, I have to pick on Lance Stephenson. He played a number of years for the NBA Pacers in Indianapolis and people never had a neutral opinion about him or his on court antics. He was good. No doubt about it but the Sports Illustrated headline said it all: “From Pacers star to unwanted free agent”. Google it. He is now one of the many celebrities with Monster. And I also have to say, the concert they had for their Dealer Awards Dinner was spectacular. George Benson and Friends Play the American Songbook with the BBB Orchestra with Bernie Dressel was incredible.

Bernie Dressel BBB Orchestra

Head Monster Noel Lee was as animated and entertaining as ever so for those kinds of reasons, that was a fun press conference and event to attend. Will do it again next year but unfortunately, this year they talked more about remaking Monster than they did about new products so from that perspective, it was kind of dull. The music was definitely worth it. What was new was a boom box, new head sets, and finally, an iSport head set for people on the move. Other than the intro video, not a word about cables but they are the gold standard for cables.

Panasonic Oven


Panasonic Press event was more interesting for the automotive side than the consumer side. Panasonic is the worlds leader in lithium batteries for the Tesla automobiles. In fact, their automotive group is the largest of Panasonic in the USA. So what caught my eye was the Panasonic countertop induction oven. Panasonic is also reviving the Technics Brand by bringing out  a cordless direct drive Turntable, the SL-1200GR. Priced at $1,299 British Pounds or $1,627. Read the Review
You know how silly it seems to get when on one side, Monster brings out Lance Stephenson and Panasonic brings out Mickey Mouse.

On the other hand is Voxx International. This is the gobbler of companies and the brands in their stable is quite long from some budget conscious speakers from 808 Audio to top of the line audio from Klipsch to electronics for the home and auto. How about a $49 water proof speaker, the CAM H2O. They do have some cool stuff. Another one of theirs is Project Nursery with a wide range of baby monitoring devices that is a different take on how it is done.

808 Audio Hex Light

Jamo Sound Bar

Jamo is the Scandinavian design of audio and speakers. Take a look at the Jamo Soundbar from CES.

Klipsch also has a CES webpage worth taking a look at especially my favorite, the Mid-Century Magnificent table top speaker. From Klipsch came my favorite quote: “stop buying crap audio, it’s embarrassing”.  An interesting part of their presentation was about EyeLock. This is a company that Voxx partnered with three years ago, and then purchased them two years ago. Looks like they might have something after all.

Kado Thin Charger


Casio has always been one of my favorite press events to go to and see what they think is exciting and usually, they are not far off. Their watch lineup is something to lust after and I am not sure I want the Edifice EQB-600 or the ProTrek Smart Watch WSD-F20. Could go with both but the prices are high but they have everything. Smarter, thinner, GPS, locations, tracking, and more and more. $390 for the Edifice on Amazon and $500 for the other.

Another pre show event I look into is the Showstoppers Launchit.  Each year, they bring in several companies in the launch stage to meet and present before a panel of people to tell them whether their product might be worth investing in. Quite interesting to see the products and hear about their chances of success which in most cases might be pretty slim but I think each of them go away with some really sound advice.  What amazes me is the number of options for companies to get funded from Kick Starter to Indigogo, Angel Lists, and the like. Ok, how about your own personal laundry folding machine? Foldimate.  Another cool thing was a speaker that only you can hear. For someone who doesn’t like ear buds, this might be just the thing for me. And there were a lot more but I had to leave early. The winner of the event was Nonda. Take a look.


Phone Prayer Another pre show event was TechDebut. Like Launchit, it showcases companies that are just starting out and launching what they hope will be new products. It had three companies that I thought had some promise. One was a bit coin chain provider, the second has an idea about easily managed unlocked phones, and the third is a website with product reviews and trusted places to buy the products called iuzeit. This I liked the looks of. After the long walk to the suite, it made me wonder if it was worth the trip but you never know and it is fun to look at what people are coming up with.

LG was another massive press event. What they will be doing for 2017 is making a big investment in car assist systems. They are also making a big push to connect everything in the home with their DeepThinQ technology which you can read about here. How about a refrigerator with a flat panel screen that not only allows you to surf the web, find recipes, but also look inside the fridge to see what is there. Also, a robot that becomes an airport assistant for travelers and of course, the super UHD televisions using a new nano technology to create a high quality image no matter where you sit. Their studies discovered that 90 percent of television watchers don’t sit in the sweet spot in front of it. Biggest reason the curved TVs are going away. Creating new sound also with Dolby Atmos Sound which is a higher technology sound from your set and speakers. And finally, there is “wall paper”, the super thin, 2.57mm thick screen that attaches to the mounting bracket on the wall with magnets. WOW!

LG Wallpaper


And the show had yet to get underway.

More from CES 2017 later.

Robert Sanborn

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