Published on May 16th, 2013 | by Gareth Von Kallenbach0
Consumer Electronics Show 2013 Dazzles the Eyes and Ears
By Gareth von Kallenbach & Genevieve McBride
The start of the year kicked off in a large way for the electronic industry with the 2013 Consumer Electronics Show which is held annually each January in Las Vegas. The convention is so large that it sprawls beyond the massive convention center and occupies large amounts of space in the Venetian Hotel as well as various suites and conference rooms at hotels and resorts all over the city.
Thousands of people descend upon the event to get the first look at the latest and greatest in technology from companies ranging from the established vets to startups. In addition to the elaborate parties that punctuate the evenings, there also keynote speakers from companies who fill conference rooms to capacity to divulge to the gathered journalists their latest and greatest creations.
It is electronic in any way you’ll see it here, from the great routers and range extenders of Lynksys to the amazing ultra-high-definition televisions from Sharp, Samsung, Panasonic and Sony. There were also tons of accessories for phones and tablets as well as all manner of home and car audio products
We really enjoyed looking at the camera equipment especially the D3200 digital camera from Nikon which not only takes amazing pictures but offers a Wi-Fi option so that photos can instantly be shared so staffers can edit and post pictures as quickly as you take them. There also was an option which allows the camera to live stream video as well, which would be an extreme help for us at future conventions. Another item that caught our eyes was the spectacular monitors of the ViewSonic Corporation. The VSD 240 really impressed in that not only did it feature crystal-clear display as well as 10-point touchscreen abilities which made it ideal for Windows 8 equipped systems. A further bonus is that it’s actually a Wi-Fi enabled android device that can also function like a large tablet. Even independent of the computer connections, the device allows users to browse the web, send e-mails, and run apps. The monitor also has USB ports and allows easy input of documentation and images directly to the unit. Naturally we were extremely impressed well it worked when connected to a computer as either a primary or secondary monitor on the system. The independent Wi-Fi ability of it allowed us to do such tasks as sending and receiving e-mails all the while immersed in a computer game. The versatility and options it presents are exciting and we look for to exploring those more in the future.
Another highlight of the show for us was the Razor Edge which is stylish gaming tablet and system designed by the Razer Corporation. Combining all the functionality of the tablet with the ability play high-end PC games is a very impressive achievement. There are some optional yet highly recommended add-ons including a keyboard and control unit which really helped to unlock the versatility and power of the unit. At first we were taken aback by the approximately $1200 retail price the unit, until we remembered that gaming laptops can run upwards of $2200 and do not offer the mix of power mobility that the Edge does.
The sheer vastness of the convention makes it difficult to document the thousands of impressive innovations that were there. While my focus often drew me to home and office technologies we certainly were very impressed by several leisure items from Plantronics, Turtle Beach, and Jabra as well as computer accessories from companies new and old who showed us all manner of new game controllers and monitors including one that did not need a mouse as the movement of your eyes control the cursor.
The home electronics were always impressive and 4K resolution televisions were everywhere, but especially impressive was Samsung’s 85 inch, 4K resolutions Ultra HD television that stands with a unique frame design reminiscent of swinging chalkboards of yesteryear, but probably a lot more sturdier. While the emphasis was still on smart phones and tablets, this year’s addition to the mobile trend is smart homes and With more and more home electronics getting furbished with Wi-Fi capability and with smart phones and tablets in nearly every homeowner’s hands, if CES 2013 is any indication, we’re not too far off from operating washers and dryers from work or pre-heating the oven before we leave the grocery store. There’s already technology in place that allows you to adjust your home’s thermostat when you’re not at home. Imagine driving home from work in the summer and not wanting to wait for the house to cool down when you get home. If you have the right equipment in place, you can signal your air conditioner to start up while you’re still stuck in traffic. CES is always a haven of technological innovation and 2013’s show proved it again in spades.