2020 - Consumer Electronics Show (CES) - Events

Consumer Electronics Show (CES)

Consumer Electronics Show (CES)

2020

CES is the world's gathering place for all those who thrive on the business of consumer technologies. It has served as the proving ground for innovators and breakthrough technologies for 50 years - the global stage where next-generation innovations are introduced to the marketplace. Owned and produced by the Consumer Technology Association (CTA), it attracts the world's business leaders and pioneering thinkers.

Show Episodes

CES 2020 Pre-Show - Episode 547

2020-01-05

This week, we discuss our predictions for CES 2020, changes to the TPN live show, and memories of past CES broadcasts.

Lumen - PLUGHITZ Live Presents (TPN Picks Best of CES 2020 Award)

2020-01-14

PLUGHITZ Live Presents awards its TPN Picks Best of CES 2020 Award to Lumen.

Lumen is a breath analyzer, but with a different purpose from what you may be thinking. Rather than being used to analyze whether or not you are drunk, Lumen is used to determine information about your metabolism. The company claims that with a single breath they can give you information about the effectiveness of exercise and more. They do this by determining whether you are currently burning carbs or fat based on a CO2 sensor and flow meter.

The science behind the device is not new. A similar process has been in use in hospitals and sports facilities for years. Lumen is bringing the concept to consumers for the first time. Whether you are actively trying to lose weight or just looking to improve your nutrition, Lumen can help.

To get started, you use the sensor to determine your metabolism throughout your day. This allows the system to determine how you are affected by activity, sleep, and more. Based on your readings, the connected app can give you a recommended meal plan, including when to eat. Before you workout, you can also use the sensor to determine whether you are in a good position to exercise or if you need to fuel up first. When you're done with your workout, run another test to see how your body was affected. This will allow you and the app to help optimize future workouts and meals to be the most effective.

All of this data combines together to form your Lumen Flex Score. This score indicates how effective your metabolism is for your lifestyle and health. Keeping an eye on this score will allow you to track your success and help with sustaining results.

After a successful crowdfunding campaign, Lumen is available now. The regular retail is $349, but the company is currently running a New Year Sale for $299.

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Voiceitt - The Tech Ranch (TPN Picks Best of CES 2020 Award)

2020-01-14

The Tech Ranch awards its TPN Picks Best of CES 2020 Award to Voiceitt.

Over the past few years, we have seen a variety of products that provide language translation services. These products are great for traveling abroad or if you find yourself in a situation where you don't speak the language. Most of these products require communication within a very limited set of parameters in which even strong accents can be a problem.

But what if you communicate in a non-traditional way? How can you easily communicate with people who are not used to your style? Millions of people have vocal disabilities, due to stroke, cerebral palsy, and other causes. That is where Voiceitt comes in - it provides a way to verbalize communication for people of all abilities. The product is based on the idea that verbal communication is an essential human need, whether you're ordering food or telling someone "I love you." For those who have limited speech capabilities, the limitations are difficult to overcome.

Voiceitt is designed specifically to understand and respond to non-standard and dysarthric speech. This is accomplished through a mobile application, which is currently in a closed beta phase. It allows for face-to-face, real-time communication with friends, family, and people around you. This can bring an aspect of everyday life for most that was previously unavailable, helping to build stronger and more meaningful connections.

If you are one of more than 10 million people in the United States or Europe who suffer from speech disabilities or are the caretaker of one of the 8 percent of children with a temporary or consistent communication disorder and would like to join the beta program, you can apply to join on their website.

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MicroVision - The Gadget Professor (TPN Picks Best of CES 2020 Award)

2020-01-15

The Gadget Professor awards his TPN Picks Best of CES 2020 Award to MicroVision.

Over the past few years, the cost of projection technology has come down significantly. That has been paired with the size of the technology getting smaller. On Black Friday 2019, we saw pico projectors being offered for less than $100. However, these devices don't provide a lot of value for most consumers. That's because the way we interact with our computing technology has changed, as well.

Most people expect the screens in their life to be touch. Nearly all laptops, definitely all phones and tablets, and even a lot of desktop (all-in-one) computers offer touch input. Projection screens, however, still require external input - that is until now. MicroVision has developed the Interactive Projection Engine - a very small hardware array that allows developers to produce devices with touch-enabled projection.

The demo device we got to see allowed for nearly any standard video input and computing output to connect to a device. We saw the projector connected to a phone with impressive touch recognition capabilities. But, the possibilities are endless, especially when connected to a computer. Even in our portable broadcast studio, this projector would make traveling easier, because it would eliminate the need for monitors.

Imagine being a business traveler, maybe you're a salesperson. You don't know what your client might have in a conference room. You don't want to pack a full projector, but the pico projectors tend to be too dim. This technology, however, is laser-powered, making it possible to use it in standard lighting. We even saw it on our wall in the studio with our lighting and the light of the convention center.

The demo device is available for developers through an application. The company is working with manufacturers to produce commercial products based on the technology.

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URGONight - Talking Sound (TPN Picks Best of CES 2020 Award)

2020-01-15

The Talking Sound awards its TPN Picks Best of CES 2020 Award to URGONight.

Have you ever had a period of time where you just couldn't sleep at night? Maybe a week leading up to a big event like CES. Maybe you've got a big project at work that you're worried about. Maybe you can't figure out what's going on, you just can't sleep. That's where URGONight comes in. Their product is a training device for your brain that helps you learn to get into the right state to sleep.

Rather than the common scenario of wearing a device while you sleep, which can negatively affect your sleep, URGONight is worn during the day. Even better, it is worn for only a few minutes per day. It does this using an electroencephalogram (EEG) sensor combined with brain exercises on the connected app. The device is based on existing technology that was previously only available to those who took the time and expense to go to a sleep clinic.

Early testers seem to love the device. The fact that it doesn't require wearing the device to bed is seemingly the most popular feature. The fact that it doesn't use any wave emissions or sounds is a big deal, too, though. Because it doesn't try to make any changes through the device itself, it can create ease of mind for the user. And, even without any electronic stimulation, users could see lasting results, thanks to the guided exercises. Those exercises are recommended based on the readings of the device with the intention to help you sleep faster and better.

URGONight is not currently publicly available, but it is coming. If you want more information about the company, the product, or want to sign up for updates, you can check out the company's website.

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Wonder Painter - Tech Podcasts Network Best of CES 2020 Award

2020-01-15

The Tech Podcasts Network team awards its TPN Best of CES 2020 Award to Wonder Painter.

As a kid, almost everyone imagined themselves as the protagonist in their favorite stories. Heck, most adults do it when they read. However, those picture books never actually feature your face, right? Wonder Painter has created a technology that can directly bring any drawing or photo to life. The technology can allow publishers to use the reader's drawing or photo as an integral part of their storytelling experience.

Imagine a story about two kids going on an adventure - it's a fairly standard kids book concept. However, using Wonder Painter's technology, that story can feature you and your best friend as the kids going on said adventure. During the story, the two of you need a horse to get across a large field. Simply draw your own horse and the drawing comes to life as your transportation. This is nearly every kid's dream scenario and it is now a possibility.

The company has published a few demo apps to the Apple App Store to show off the basics of what their technology can do. While these demos are a ton of fun, the really important part is the technology. It is available in a platform-agnostic way, making it possible to build for the web, iOS, Android, Windows, Linux, macOS, and more. The company licenses this technology to content creators to allow them to make their own products and services more interactive. They are currently working with LG, Baidu, Alibaba, and more to make interactive applications a reality.

If you want to see the technology in action, check out the Wonder Painter apps in the App Store or the company's website. You can also learn about the SDK, Cloud service, and ask for a private demo of the development tech.

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Intel's New NUC Direction - Episode 214

2020-01-26

This week, Avram Piltch talks about the Intel NUC and the future direction of the product line. In the past, the company has released a limited array of models and configuration options to correspond with its processor upgrades. While the line has never been incredibly popular, it has been consistently stable.

This year, the company announced a change of direction, but one that is also familiar. The next generation of NUC will no longer be just an Intel-branded product. Instead, it will become a product standard, powered by the Intel NUC Compute Element - a self-contained computing card. These cards will plug into a daughterboard for power and provide the essentials of the computer. The manufacturers, including Razer and Adata, will provide both fully built and bare-bones models that customers can customize.

These systems can be upgraded, unlike previous models. They support discrete graphics cards for the first time. There are also upgradable RAM and SSD. The biggest upgradable component, though, is the Compute Element itself. When you need more power, you can simply replace the Compute Element and the system is upgraded.

If this idea sounds familiar, it's because it is. The concept is very similar to Intel's Compute Card, right down to the name. The Compute Card was designed to power embedded devices, such as smart TVs. The idea was that, rather than replacing the television, you could simply replace the Card. This would, theoretically, avoid the situation where Hulu and Netflix recently stopped supporting older smart TVs.

Like the Computer Card, the NUC Compute Element sounds like it is a solution looking for a problem. The price is higher than a regular PC while being only slightly smaller and being powered by laptop hardware. The video cards may be desktop quality, but the processors are not. Intel is going to have trouble finding an audience for this product.

RoboSense: Autonomous Driving With LiDAR Technology @ CES 2020

2020-02-18

CES was back this year with some amazing innovations, advanced technologies, and determination to make the world a better place through technology. Every year thousands of people make their way to this amazing event hosted by the Consumer Technology Association.

CES has always been one of the most prominent platforms where tech companies can showcase their new and innovative products. This year was no different. The trade show was held from 7th January to 10th January and saw tech companies from all over the world participate in the event.

We heard from many different companies at the event. One of the companies that got our attention was RoboSense. We sat with their representative, Dr. Leilei Shinohara, at CES 2020 to know more about their company and their innovative product.

Robosense's LiDAR technology


RoboSense was founded in 2014 and since then the company has been working on bringing high levels of innovation in autonomous driving. The company was promoting its new sensor with LiDAR technology at CES 2020.

For those of you who are not aware of LiDAR technology, the concept is all about reflecting light off an object and then using a sensor to measure the distance or range.

The project for RoboSense's latest sensor started three years and is still in the testing phase. Their LiDAR technology allows autonomous cars to detect other cars and objects from a long distance. Dr. Shinohara also shared that the technology is equally as effective in real-time.

Human organs, like the eyes and brain, are very complex. However, human errors can sometimes cause accidents. RoboSense sensors, once installed in an autonomous car, can help reduce the number of accidents on the road.

How does the RoboSense sensor work?


RoboSense sensors work on LiDAR technology combined with artificial intelligence. This means that if your vehicle has RoboSense sensors installed, then it will not only measure the distance from other vehicles, it will take into account the environment, weather, time of day, and many other similar factors. LiDAR technology helps in saving the vehicle from any type of collision by measuring the distance between the vehicle and the other body. The Artificial Intelligence aspect, on the other hand, helps in making the vehicle learn more about the surroundings. The artificial intelligence technology that RoboSense uses is very well trained and tends to learn more with the collection of more data.

How is RoboSense different from other companies out there?


There are many companies in the market that offer technology for autonomous vehicles, so we were inclined to ask about any competitive advantage that RoboSense has over its competitors. Dr. Shinohara told us that there are many companies that focus on LiDAR sensor hardware. RoboSense, on the other hand, offers a complete package. It is not just about the hardware but the AI program as well. RoboSense LiDAR technology is also paired with artificial intelligence which optimizes the functionality of the sensor.

RoboSense technology is still in its testing stage. They have partnered with different autonomous vehicle companies in China who are testing their product and continuously helping them improve their LiDAR sensor. It is speculated that autonomous vehicles will become very common in the coming years and innovative companies like RoboSense are going to enjoy a very prominent place in the market.

Interview by Don Baine, The Gadget Professor.
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Nuheara unites quality audio with hearing aid technology @ CES 2020

2020-02-18

David Cannington is the CEO of Nuheara, a "smart hearing" company, whose potentially life-changing audio enhancement device combines the benefits of a premium headset with many of the benefits of a hearing aid. One of every six people has some degree of mild to moderate hearing loss. says Cannington, and Nuheara can provide customized relief along with a high-quality listening experience for people experiencing the early stages of hearing challenges.

With Nuheara, you can refine your listening - and hearing - experience with a companion assessment app, that automatically calibrates the earbuds to your personal hearing profile. Additionally, the device allows you to further customize your hearing experience with respect to location or situation, including speech and noise control, EQ frequency, directional focus and more. On the audiophile side, the headsets provide high fidelity, Siri and Google Assist, hands-free calling, and all the benefits you expect from a premium headset.

While not technically a hearing aid, nor FDA approved as a medical device, Nuheara is classified as a "smart hearing device". It utilizes a proprietary hearing personalization system called Ear ID to customize solutions for mild to moderate hearing loss challenges in common situations like crowded places. Where background noise - the "cocktail effect", or the "pub deafness challenge" in Cannington's native Australia - may be an issue, Nuheara employs Speech and Noise Control that process the sound aggregated through each of the earbuds three microphones, drops the background noise and amplifies speech. Additionally, the earbuds have a directional focus that zeroes in on audio directly in front of the listener.

The key to the Nuheara experience, Ear ID, is a tonal hearing assessment application that employs a standardized hearing assessment algorithm commonly used by audiologists. The initial assessment takes 8 to 10 minutes, and the results are used to calibrate the earbuds for each user. Nuheara earbuds are conveniently stored in a charging station, and at full charge can provide five hours of Bluetooth streaming, eight hours of hearing processing if used as a hearing product. The charging station storage case, fully charged, can provide three hours of charging time for an on-the-go total of 20 hours Bluetooth streaming and 32 hours of hearing processing.

While not intended to replace hearing aids, Cannington believes Nuheara has a role to play in making hearing health more accessible and affordable particularly for those in the early stages of hearing challenges. Nuheara earbuds retail for $399 a pair. Visit the company's website to learn more.

Interview by Don Baine, The Gadget Professor.

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WhiteFox Defense's DroneFox is protecting your airspace @ CES 2020

2020-02-18

As drones and other multi-rotor flying devices have become more common, so have the problems that come along with them. Privacy and security have both taken a hit because of the ability for these devices to enter areas that are supposed to be private because of their ability to go above fences and walls. WhiteFox Defense is looking to help solve that problem with DroneFox.

What is DroneFox?


WhiteFox Defense has created a product called DroneFox, whose purpose is to protect your private airspace. This could be used to create a virtual detection dome around an office building, the Super Bowl stadium, a prison, or even a military facility. DroneFox looks for drones and other unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) and reports them to the appropriate people. This is accomplished by pinging the air for the unique RF signature of each UAS.

Who is DroneFox for?


Take, for example, the airspace around and above a prison. In the past, it would have been difficult to violate that space and even harder to use it to deliver contraband, such as drugs or even weapons. Today, however, using commercially available drones, the process is almost offensively easy. This obviously causes issues for the facility, including in the safety and security of both inmates and staff. But, by using the DroneFox system, the issue can be minimized.

How is DroneFox used?


The prison can use the technology to help them detect objects flying in their airspace that should not be there. If an unauthorized device is detected, someone on staff will receive an alert. From there, they can determine how to respond to the threat. They could meet it outside or they might want to use a jammer to disable the drone in the air. In the case of a more secure location, like a military facility, they might even want to shoot the drone out of the air.

To learn more about DroneFox, check out the WhiteFox Defense website.

Interview by Don Baine, The Gadget Professor.
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Drinkworks - Geek News Central (TPN Picks Best of CES 2020 Award)

2020-01-14

Geek News Central awards its TPN Picks Best of CES 2020 Award to Drinkworks by Keurig.

Nearly everyone knows who Keurig is. Their pod-based coffee makers changed the way homes and offices make coffee. You can purchase Pods directly from the company, or from a variety of companies who all make Pods for their own style of coffee. No longer do people have to portion out the right amount of grounds for a single cup of coffee, or even worse, make a full pot.

Last year, the company announced a new product with a similar goal - Drinkmaker from Drinkworks. Rather than focusing on coffee, like the standard Keurig devices do, Drinkmaker is a pod-based bartender. The Pods that you purchase won't come with coffee grounds, but will instead come with all of the ingredients to make an alcoholic drink. The variety of drinks available is already impressive, with everything from a Cosmopolitan and White Russian to Peach Sangria available on their website.

Like the standard Keurig product, you simply place a Pod of your choice into the machine, press the start button, and it will produce the drink. The biggest benefit of the device is that the drink will always be properly proportioned with quality ingredients without any work on your part. It's perfect for when you have friends or family over and don't want to spend your time bartending but instead socializing.

At CES 2020, the company showed off the final product and announced general availability. Drinkmaker is available now for $299 with free shipping. Because of certain restrictions, shipping is only available to certain states, but the company is working to expand its availability as quickly as possible. Drink Pods are available now starting at $9.99 and ranging to $15.99.

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THE BOX reinvents shipping to save the environment @ CES 2020

2020-02-19

Headquartered in Berlin, Germany, LivingPackets designed THE BOX to reduce the amount of waste we all know shipping can produce. THE BOX is a reusable and smart packaging solution that can be used as an alternative to cardboard boxes in the shipping process. Whereas a normal cardboard box has a single life between warehouse and destination, THE BOX can be used and shipped up to 1000 times. At the end of its life cycle, LivingPackets will make repairs and refurbish it so that it could be used an additional 1000 times. This environmentally-friendly alternative also saves up to 90% of carbon dioxide emissions.

THE BOX can hold up to 25 liters of material, equivalent to approximately two shoe boxes. It can also fold to send smaller items such as paper documents and laptops. THE BOX is equipped with a holding mechanism inside that eliminates the alternative toxic filling materials (such as paper, plastic, styrofoam, and air-filled bubbles, both large and small) used in traditional packaging. A temperature sensor, shock sensor, and a weight scale are featured inside THE BOX to ensure that the quality is maintained and it is within weight.

Alexander Cotte, co-founder and CEO of LivingPackets, claims that THE BOX optimizes existing shipping processes. All you do is place your item inside, close it, and enter the address of its destination. You can then track your package in real-time from point A to point B using their app on your smart device. Labels are also a thing of the past; the E Ink display replaces the printed label and updates per traveling destination. It can also be used to show instructions once the package has arrived at its destination.

After four years in development and 37 patents, THE BOX is an affordable, environmentally friendly, and innovative solution that will not cost more than traditional packaging. No more breaking down cardboard boxes to throw out or, if you're up for it, recycling.

THE BOX is currently in beta testing with the company's partners. For more information on the product or the company, please visit the LivingPackets website.

Interview by Don Baine, The Gadget Professor.

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Hiber: IoT connectivity in the furthest corners of the globe @ CES 2020

2020-02-19

Hiber is a Dutch company that works to provide IoT - Internet of Things - connectivity in remote and rural areas. Only 10% of the world has connectivity right now, says Erik Wienk, Managing Director, which is about 90% of the people. But the remaining 90% of the world needs to use satellite communications technology. IoT is expensive and power-hungry, though, so Hiber has combined terrestrial and satellite communications into a satellite network with the power consumption and cost-saving levels of land-based communications. They have their own satellite network, with two satellites currently in orbit and two more planned.

Hiber systems are used in agricultural technology, logistics and supply chain systems, and mining environments. Industry sensors connect to Hiber modems and antennae to transmit data like soil moisture or temperature via satellite. The company hopes to be a solution to the big challenges we have today in situations like food waste, due to poor monitoring of production or transportation. Hiber technology can be used to monitor beehives, 70 million of which are in remote areas, with a mortality rate of 40% in unmonitored areas. With monitoring, mortality rates can be reduced by 10%, with a commensurate positive impact on crops.

The company currently has about 70 pilot projects underway, with a major focus on agricultural monitoring and transportation logistics, as well as smart energy. Hiber has been nominated as a National Icon by the Dutch Government and attended CES as part of the Dutch Innovation booth. The experience has provided them with new ways to look at things, like connected beehives, that they might not have fully considered previously. As they solve problems at the edge, and others learn how Hiber solves connectivity issues with 4G and with LoRa (Long Range low power wireless communications technology), and it hopes to become the standard globally. To learn more, visit the company's website.

Interview by Don Baine, The Gadget Professor.

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Minnow helps you find TV shows across all of your services @ CES 2020

2020-02-19

With all of the many ways we can watch television these days, between broadcast, cable, and streaming, there are a ton of shows to watch. Some will premiere a new episode every week on the same day, while others will drop an entire season at one time. This can make following what you're watching more difficult. Fortunately, Minnow is here to help you keep track.

Using the Minnow platform, which is available on iOS, Android, Apple TV, and Android TV, you can track the shows that you are currently watching and get ideas for other shows to watch. By entering which streaming services you use, you can get a single interface to browse and track the shows that are available on your services. When you find a show you want to watch, the app will open the correct service and, if you are currently in progress, will return you to where you left off.

The idea of a single place to find out where a show or movie is available to stream has existed before, but with Minnow flipping the script, you get a new and exciting way to browse what you already use. Being able to see only the shows that are on the services you subscribe to, but in a single interface, can eliminate the process of opening Netflix and scrolling, then opening Hulu and doing it all over again, only to decide you want to watch something on Amazon Prime Video (don't lie - you do it, too).

Minnow is available now for free on mobile, Apple TV, and Android TV, with new platforms, like Roku, Amazon Fire TV, web, and smart TVs, coming in the near future. To find out more about Minnow, or to download the app today, check out the company's website.

Interview by Don Baine, The Gadget Professor.

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LOVO makes computer voices sound natural and emotional @ CES 2020

2020-02-20

Whether it's for videogames, e-learning, or nearly any other sort of media, the best way to make it engaging is with speech. But, getting access to a talented voice actor can be difficult and, if you're making something in your home, expensive. And computer voices just don't have the same level of engagement, as there is usually no emotion to their voice. That might be changing, however, with LOVO.

This new platform uses artificial intelligence to create realistic computer-powered voices that can read any script. Most importantly, they can read the script with inflections and emotions that traditional computer-generated voices simply cannot. When you hear the voices, which you can in the interview, you'll be as surprised as we were that they were not recorded by a human.

LOVO offers over 50 unique voices, categorized by voice tone, age range, and where they are most likely to be used, such as audiobooks, advertisements, and videogames. This gives you the ability to find the right voice for the right purpose without having to listen to each one, similar to how stock photos or music are arranged. To make it even better, the company can clone a voice, allowing you to have scripts read by a particular person even when they are unavailable to read.

In addition to the traditional interface, LOVO also offers an API. This allows developers to integrate the company's world-class voice services directly into their applications, without having to pre-render all of the content. Imagine a newsreader that can read articles from an RSS feed in a human voice. But, the platform doesn't have to record voices for every article that is published but can instead generate the audio the first time someone wants to hear it.

LOVO is available now, with a free demo plan for personal use, and various other offerings starting at $19.99 per month. To learn more about LOVO, check out the company's website.

Interview by Don Baine, The Gadget Professor.

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Bebefit infant carrier - comfortable for baby and caregiver @ CES 2020

2020-02-20

Monit Bebefit is an ergonomic smart baby carrier designed to reduce stress on the back and joints of parents and caregivers. The infant carrier was developed by Monit CEO Tony Park after he suffered a back injury that required a 10-day hospital stay as a result of carrying his own infant daughter.

While he found a variety of infant carriers on the market, he didn't see any that were as uniquely adjustable with respect to weight distribution as the carrier he ultimately created. The Bebefit carrier can support up to 100 lbs., providing redundancy of safety for the average baby. The carrier can be adjusted in multiple ways, from one-handed opening and closing of the hip seat to one-button switching of weight-bearing from the shoulders to the back. The carrier also includes a Key Weight Shift Mechanism that equally distributes weight to the shoulders as the baby's center of gravity moves downward while being carried. Additionally, the carrier is made of non-abrasive and hypo-allergenic materials that are safe for babies and those who care for them.

The Bebefit infant carrier is made of water-resistant, quick-drying 100% polypropylene fabric with a low thermal conductivity that makes it cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. The fabric is 40% lighter than cotton, anti-microbial & odor resistant. The carrier comes in three colors, Navy, Pink and Gray, and is sleekly designed to complement everything from casual clothing to business suits, and has an expandable side pocket for storing personal items. It also folds compactly for storage between uses.

Bebefit is recognized as "hip-healthy" for babies by the International Hip Dysplasia Institute. The carrier retails for $169 online and comes with a variety of accessories including warmers, teething pads, and extra inserts. For more information, visit the company's website.

Interview by Don Baine, The Gadget Professor.

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Time-C is a beautiful Swiss watch with a lot of smarts @ CES 2020

2020-02-20

During CES, wearable technology is all the rage. Across the show, you'll find the standard fare, like smartwatches, fitness bands, sleep trackers and the like. However, every once in a while you encounter something truly unique - something that doesn't quite fit into another category. That is exactly what we found with the Time-C from IEVA.

The Time-C is, by its very nature, fashion-forward. At first glance, it is a beautiful watch that could easily go with casual and formal attire. It's a Swiss-made watch, meaning it is going to be a quality timepiece. However, this watch is far more than meets the eye. It is smart, but not in the way you might initially predict. It doesn't show notifications or allow you to interact with the apps on your phone. Instead, Time-C is designed to improve your health and lifestyle, as well as your fashion sense.

The watch features a myriad of sensors, ranging from temperature and humidity to pollution and noise. These sensors are specifically chosen and designed to detect environmental stressors around you. It also measures your physical activity, heart rate, etc., which can also be environmental stressors. Once the readings are collected, the platform translates all of that data into recommendations to improve your beauty, wellness, lifestyle, and nutrition.

Within the app, you will see a beauty regiment, programs for nutrition, etc. These rituals will adjust over time as the device gathers more information about your daily life - your activity, environment, and other factors. All of the recommendations that are made can be fulfilled entirely within the platform, making it a one-stop process.

The Time-C follows the Twin-C, which they refer to as a connected jewel. This product is similar in intention, without the watch face. It is designed to be worn in a variety of ways, such as a broach, bracelet, attached to a scarf, etc. From a fashion perspective, it is more versatile, while the Time-C is more day-to-day practical for many.

The Twin-C is available now and ranges from $150 to $270. The Time-C is expected to hit the market around the end of Quarter 2 (around June 2020) and will retail somewhere in the range of $1000. For more information about the company and its products, check out their website.

Interview by Don Baine, The Gadget Professor.

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The EcoFlow DELTA brings power to a dark situation @ CES 2020

2020-02-21

If you live in a place where the weather gets dangerous, like the Gulf Coast, you know just how important having a backup for power can be. Following a hurricane a few years ago, several of our team were without any power for over a week. In Florida, that means more than just food in the freezer spoiling - it can also mean health issues from the heat. Standard battery systems are too small, and generators require gasoline and maintenance. But, the EcoFlow DELTA is a product that finds the best of both worlds.

EcoFlow DELTA Basics


The EcoFlow DELTA is a large rechargeable battery designed specifically for those powerless situations. Unlike small packs, the DELTA is designed to be able to run your lights, refrigerator, CPAP machine, and more when the need arises. The DELTA is for more than just emergencies, however. You can use it to bring power along on a camping trip, without the need for the noisy generator, or running your car battery down.

EcoFlow DELTA Specs


The battery features a capacity of 1300Wh and an output of 1800W. The battery can charge from completely dead to 80 percent in only an hour. When combined with solar panels, through the universal solar input port, you can even keep the battery itself charging while it is also keeping your home running. On one side of the system is a panel of standard electrical outlets to power your appliances and necessities. On the other side is a panel of USB ports to keep your electronics, like phones and tablets, powered. You can even use it to give a small charge to an electric vehicle.

The EcoFlow DELTA is available now in several configurations. You can but it on its own for $1399, or in bundles with portable solar panels. To find out more about the products or to place an order, check out their website.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central.
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MONIT Adult Diaper Sensor reduces elder health risks @ CES 2020

2020-02-21

While baby care technology is a popular category, one area that seems to be missed is elder care. All elder care facilities have certain common issues, with one of the most common being incontinence. As we get older, it is fairly common to have problems controlling our body, but for a care facility, managing this for multiple patients can be a real challenge. Luckily, MONIT Adult Diaper Sensor is designed to help.

Smart Adult Diaper Sensor


The technology is designed to help care facilities manage and monitor the diaper status of their patients. Currently, facilities either expect the patients to report when their diaper is soiled, which is not always possible, or check during their rounds. This is time-consuming and takes the caregivers away from other tasks. It can also waste resources by unnecessarily changing a diaper. By using MONIT's system, they can get alerts, care of the sensing technology built into the device.

More important than any of the resource issues are the medical problems produced by improper diaper changes. Patients can suffer from any number of issues, ranging from skin rashes to urinary tract infections. These health issues pose both discomfort for the patient and cost for the family and caregivers. The Adult Diaper Sensor reduces these risks while giving everyone involved a new peace of mind.

Other sensing benefits


The sensor does more than just alert to a soiled diaper, however. It includes temperature, humidity, and accelerometer sensors as well. This can make staff aware of other issues, including a skin temperature spike or drop, or even a fall. It can also notify if the patient hasn't been moving at all, which can be an indication of a severe issue.

To find out about all of the Adult Diaper Sensor's features or to contact the company, check out their website.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central.
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Alpha-Stim wants to treat your pain without addictive drugs @ CES 2020

2020-02-21

While our medical industry tends to try and solve problems with drugs, there can be many other ways to solve the same problem. For example, many people are incapable of taking medication for insomnia because of work obligations. There is also the possibility of side effects, like more serious health conditions or even addiction. To help overcome these issues is Alpha-Stim.

How does Alpha-Stim work?


Rather than medication, the Alpha-Stim system works by using electrical impulses. The reasoning behind the method is that 98 percent of the human nervous system is electrical, not chemical. By using the cranial electrotherapy stimulation (CES) device, people have the potential to treat anxiety, depression, insomnia, and physical pain.

The device is in two pieces: the control pack and the ear clips. Together, they look like an MP3 player and earbuds. While the most common usage will be in the privacy of your home, if you were to use it in public, you'll look like you're just listening to music. A session takes 20 minutes and involves incredibly low power - so small that most people never consciously feel it.

Why choose Alpha-Stim?


While there are other entrants in the personal electrotherapy market, most are not backed by empirical evidence. Alpha-Stim, on the other hand, is. The company provides various studies of the technology showing how it can be effective for various pain management scenarios, as well as insomnia and depression.

It is important to note that our staff have not tested the device and cannot speak to personal experiences with it. However, published scientific and clinical studies certainly help alleviate some of the concerns generated by late-night infomercial products making unbelievable claims.

Alpha-Stim has two models available ranging from $795 to $1195. You can also get more detailed information about the products and read some of the studies on their website, as well.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central.
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Sure Feed Microchip Pet Feeder makes feeding time easy @ CES 2020

2020-02-25

If you have ever had a pet, you know that most of them would eat 24/7 if given the opportunity. They are also known for stealing food from one another when they're not looking. Dogs get into the cat's food and vice versa. Even my dog suffers from food theft when at my parents' house during CES. Sure Petcare has a solution for some of these problems with the Sure Feed Microchip Pet Feeder.

How does the Microchip Pet Feeder work?


The Microchip Pet Feeder works by tracking your pet using the microchip that many pets already have. Once registered to the feeder, the device has the ability to track your pet's eating behaviors and help regulate those activities. The bowl stays covered until the pet crosses through the archway over the bowl. The feeder then determines whether or not this pet is allowed to have food.

There are several conditions that may apply to the availability of food for the pet. For example, you may only want them eating during a certain time of day. This could prevent your cat from throwing up in the living room in the middle of the night. Or, perhaps they are only allowed to eat a certain amount of food. By including a weight sensor under the bowl, the feeder can determine when they've had enough.

Who is the Microchip Pet Feeder for?


In addition to limiting your pet's eating habits, the Microchip Pet Feeder can still provide value. For example, if you have two pets, each can have their own feeding station locked to their unique microchip. This can prevent my mother's dog from eating my dog's food while he is staying there. It also means that they don't have to stay in different rooms while they eat.

It also gives the ability to track your pet's eating habits. When are they eating the most? How much do they eat each day? You can use that information to determine if something is wrong when they are eating too much or too little, or see if they are changing their habits as they age.

The Microchip Pet Feeder is available starting at $149, with the Microchip Pet Feeder Connect available for $180. For more information on the product line, check the Sure Petcare website.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central.
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Mat Luschek discusses his experiences at past shows @ CES 2020

2020-02-25

Sometimes during CES we get an opportunity to speak with a member of our own team or a colleague at the show. That is what happened when Mat Luschek visited our studio at the end of Todd's Day 1 block. Mat has worked with the Tech Podcasts Team in the past, particularly on Todd's floor team, to cover CES. This year, he was exploring the show as a freelancer who lives in Las Vegas.

He and Todd talked about what has quickly become some of the most anticipated parts of the show floor - Eureka Park. This piece of the show is directly below our studio on the first floor of The Sands Expo. This section features new companies and startups, often in the very early stages of their corporate journey. In the time that TPN has covered the show, we have seen this part of the show grow from a couple of dozen booths to most of the first floor of the expo hall.

Todd describes Eureka Park by saying, "The guy that's in the booth, that's maxed out his credit card and is showing whatever he can show to try and get some traction. Try and get a business deal going." And that is exactly what it is like - one of two people with a dream and mounting debt hoping that CES will be the show that turns their dreams into reality.

The pair then talk about the things you don't usually get to see - our technological mistakes. For example, Todd brought the wrong tripod for his camera, having left the other one at home because why would he possibly need that? We've all done it, and it often leads to things that are a little less than ideal, like the product shot we used early in the week.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central.

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Monster IlluminEssence and the smart future of the brand @ CES 2020

2020-02-25

After the initial announcement of the IlluminEssence lighting product line from Monster at CES 2019, the reception has been mixed. Some of what has been missing from the line has been true customization, such as custom patterns and proper color picking. The original line was controlled by a small remote control, but this new generation, known as the Smart IlluminEssence, is different

The Smart IlluminEssence line, which will be launching in the coming months, gives greater control over the products by introducing smartphone control. This means the ability to pick a color and get back to that exact color again. It also introduces custom moods, so you can create patterns in addition to the existing ones.

Most importantly, the Smart IlluminEssence line will have a variety of new and unique products. Our favorite new product is a glowing ball, dubbed The Orb. This "magic ball" is waterproof, making them perfect for use outdoors. At CEO Noel Lee's insistence, the designers are working to make them float upright so that they can be used in a pool. To make the product even more compelling, The Orb is battery-powered and features all of the capabilities above, all for $29.99.

Our next favorite products are the wall panels. There are two sets of these panels: Digit and Prism. While the Digit line looks like the individual segments of an LCD number panel, Prism is a triangle. The pieces of each set are designed to connect to one another, making unique patterns and designs. These sets are designed to be used for creative projects without breaking the bank. Digit ships with three panels for $59, while Prism sells for $69.

The most surprising product in the line is the waterproof LED strip. Unlike normal LED strips, this strip has a custom diffuser. That means that you cannot see the individual pixels on the strips, but instead, you get a single, uniformed light. In addition, this can be used outdoors because of the waterproofing. The long strip will sell for $39, with a smaller unit being available as well.

These products will be released over the coming months through "A major national retailer" at the price points listed. As information is made available, it will be at the Monster Store.

Disclosure: Since Thanksgiving 2019, our team has spent a lot of time with the Monster IlluminEssence product line because of a defect with the first generation non-smart products. Our interview at CES 2020 was to help show what a different manufacturer can do with the brand.

Interview by Scott Ertz of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology.

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LEYTON helps sustainable startups to exhibit their tech @ CES 2020

2020-02-26

For some companies, the dream of attending CES can be completely outside the realm of possibilities. Maybe it's because of finances, the distance, or something else. Because of this, we have seen organizations across the globe run contests to help those companies get to and exhibit at CES. This year, one of those contests was the LEYTON Sustainable Start-up Challenge.

This program allowed five startups from around the world to exhibit in Eureka Park. To qualify, the companies had to originate in one of nine countries, and have a positive impact on sustainability. It must also fit into one of the official CES marketplaces, which are varied and numerous, offering 32 options. The company must also fit within the CES Eureka Park criteria. From the more than 200 entries, they then narrowed it down to the five winners.

One of the winners, GroPod, was in a growing category of startups that offer indoor vegetable grow cabinets. They often look like a standard appliance, usually fitting into a refrigerator gap in a kitchen. We have featured several over the years at CES and Collision. Another winner, RetroLabs, offers a camera that goes into your refrigerator to help identify and manage expiration dates on your food. This can help reduce food waste, as well as over-buying, as you can see the contents from the store.

Skriware sets itself apart as an educational platform that teaches through 3D printing and hands-on activities. For example, you can build and program a robot almost entirely with parts and pieces you print yourself. As robotics programs are growing in popularity in schools, this can help start that program. Wiseair allows you to test and determine the air quality of a home, including during the buying process. This is done through local sensors and wider air quality data. Finally, BeFC is a paper-based biofuel cell system that doesn't use traditional and expensive catalytic conversions.

To find out more about the LEYTON Sustainable Start-up Challenge, check out their website.

Interview by Marlo Anderson of The Tech Ranch.

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OrCam MyEye 2 brings independence to the visually impaired @ CES 2020

2020-02-26

It should be no surprise that vision is an important part of modern society. For those with impaired, limited, or no vision, getting through the day can be incredibly difficult. From reading signs and menus to identifying other people in a room, the things most of us take for granted are often unavailable. With the help of the OrCam MyEye 2, some of those capabilities can be replicated.

The device is a small rectangle that attaches to a pair of glasses. Through the device, the wearer can get a lot of information about their surroundings. We got to see the device in action as it read aloud the text on a flyer in the studio. Of course, as with so many live demonstrations, it didn't work perfectly, but the CES environment is not normal life. However, what we saw was still impressive. The ability to control what is verbalized via voice controls makes it far easier to learn how to use it.

In addition to the ability to read text, the MyEye 2 can also identify faces. Once taught, the device can announce verbally when someone in your close circle is in the vicinity. Obviously, knowing who is in the room with you is an important part of socializing, and one that is often lost with visual impairment. Normally, it would require you to wait for them to introduce themselves as being there.

The best part of MyEye 2 is that it does not require an internet connection. Because all of the AI technology is built directly into the product, there is no need for an internet connection. This means that it will continue to work no matter where you are or whether or not you've got a viable cellular connection.

For more information about the OrCam MyEye 2, check out the company's website.

Interview by Marlo Anderson of The Tech Ranch.

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MicroEJ makes developing smart devices less expensive @ CES 2020

2020-02-26

When it comes to connected devices, one of the more complicated aspects is deciding upon an integrated platform. We've seen Google promote that there are millions of smart devices on the market that run on Android, but Android has a large footprint that requires onboard storage and RAM, both of which add additional cost to the production of each device. A significantly smaller platform called MicroEJ gives hardware developers all of the features they need while limiting the memory needs significantly.

The goal of MicroEJ is to help companies bring smart features to devices, in categories from smartwatches to electric meters, printers to lighting, in a faster and less expensive process. They accomplish this in part with their software platform, which is 0.1% the size of Android, which means that the system requirements are lower than they would be if they were using Android on their devices. It also means that, with smaller processors, comes less electrical requirements.

Power efficiency can be the difference between a product being viable in certain marketplaces and being more of a hassle. With lower power requirements comes the ability to run for a longer period on a battery. For example, consider a GPS transceiver on a shipping container. There's the possibility that the container will be in the dark for an entire shipment, either on boat or train and cannot charge via solar. Better battery efficiency could mean that the tracking could last longer on a smaller battery.

In addition, the platform allows hardware developers to allow software developers to deploy additional apps with new capabilities to the devices. With this ability comes a branded app marketplace, similar to what we see on Windows, iOS, and Android. This makes for the ability to allow integrations that the manufacturer might never have thought of.

For more information about MicroEJ, check out their website.

Interview by Marlo Anderson of The Tech Ranch.

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Octobo is a learning plush toy to make learning fun @ CES 2020

2020-02-27

Current studies all point to the importance of play for the development of a child's brain, especially early in life. Interacting with physical things, like toys and stuffed animals, can also have a profound effect on childhood development. But children want to interact with the things their older siblings and family members have - screens. Octobo by Thinker-Tinker allows these kids to have the best of both worlds.

Octobo is a large stuffed animal with a cutout in its face for both an eye and a mouth. By placing an iPad, Fire tablet, or Android tablet into Octobo, the character turns from a standard stuffed animal into one that can be interacted with in many ways. The first and most obvious is the ability for Octobo to respond to interaction with appropriate emotions. This is done through sensors throughout the body which allows for live feedback to touch.

Another great feature is the ability for interactive storytelling. We all remember how much fun choose your own adventure books were when we were older. Unfortunately, that kind of interaction used to require being able to read. However, with Octobo, kids who are pre-reading ability can still interact with a story without being able to read. This is accomplished through an RFID reader built into the base of the stuffed animal and plush RFID chips. By placing the chips on the reader, the child is able to interact and adjust a story from a growing library of storybooks and other content.

Octobo is intended to learn and grow with the child, making it a long-term purchase for parents and a long-term friend for kids. You can purchase a standard Octobo for $149 and the advanced pack for $199 directly from Thinker-Tinker, or get the advanced pack on Amazon for $179. For more information on Octobo or to purchase, check out the company's website.

Interview by Marlo Anderson of The Tech Ranch.

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RoomMe creates a personalized smarthome for everyone @ CES 2020

2020-02-27

Two decades ago, Bill Gates surprised the world with the incredible technology built into his home in Seattle. One of the most interesting aspects of the house was the ability of rooms to change and adjust to the people in the room. For example, digital artwork on screens throughout the home would change based on who was there, with Gates himself overriding anyone else. The technology was so impressive that it was used as a plot-point in the movie Antitrust. Now, RoomMe by Intellithings is bringing this concept into modern technology.

Gates' home required people to wear special lapel pins that would be sensed by readers throughout the building. Today, most people actually carry these devices with them all the time, built into their smartphones. This means that, with the RoomMe sensor, a smarthome setup can detect people in a room without motion sensors. This is an important step for several reasons.

The most important benefit is known to anyone who has ever been around a motion-sensing light - its tendency to turn off. If you are still for too long, perhaps working at a computer, a motion sensor will think you're not there anymore. But, if you are using a RoomMe instead, it is able to detect that your phone is in the room and can make more appropriate decisions.

The second, and most powerful feature, is the ability to make decisions based on WHO is in the room, not just that ANYONE is there. For example, maybe Marlo likes the lights to be at 50% brightness in the control room when he's working, but Michele prefers 90% brightness. By detecting which of the two is in the control room, RoomMe can dim or raise the lights to the correct level, and turn them off when they leave.

The platform currently works with a large collection of partners, including Philips Hue, Insteon, HomeKit, and more, and are available for $69. To find out more about RoomMe, check out the Intellithings website.

Interview by Marlo Anderson of The Tech Ranch.

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LiBEST's flexible battery could power next-gen wearables @ CES 2020

2020-02-27

When dealing with small electronics, especially wearable technology, one of the biggest limiting factors have consistently been battery technology. Watches and fitness bands are the size, shape, and weight that they are almost entirely because of the batteries that are included. Some companies have tried to distribute the batteries, with limited success. For example, Microsoft put half of the battery system in the clasp of the Microsoft Band, but that simply made it thick in two places. LiBEST has a new design that could change all of that.

This new battery technology is both thin and flexible, making it far more versatile for wearable devices. If this battery had been available for the Microsoft Band, the distributed battery could have been placed within the band itself, rather than in the clasp. That would mean that the clasp wouldn't have been so large, the screen could have stayed thin, and the battery life could have been as good, or better than it was in production.

In addition to wearable bands, there are other places where a flexible battery could be a benefit. Take, for example, a full-cup Bluetooth headset. By using the existing headband, which is usually empty, as housing for these LiBEST flexible batteries, you could add additional battery life to the product. Imagine not having to charge your headphones for an entire trip, as opposed to every couple of days.

The most exciting development that can come from LiBEST technology is in products that haven't been thought of before. Often, our minds limit themselves to the confines that we know of, such as the rigidity of batteries. By removing that limitation, a whole new generation of technologies could be created, such as completely flexible devices.

To find out more about the LiBEST flexible battery technology, check out the company's website.

Interview by Marlo Anderson of The Tech Ranch.

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Silent Beacon makes safety and security more affordable @ CES 2020

2020-02-28

It's no secret that America is aging, and technology is mostly leaving them behind. However, some companies are looking out for our aging population. One of the companies working to make life safer for older people is Silent Beacon.

The concept is fairly simple. It's a panic button for those times when you can't easily make a call. I think we're all familiar with the concept from what might be the world best known commercial - "I've fallen and I can't get up." Silent Beacon sets itself apart from its competitors, like Life Alert, by dealing with the most limiting factor: price. While many of the services charge a monthly service fee, Silent Beacon does not. They accomplish this by not having their own monitoring center. Instead, the system calls the important numbers in your life.

For example, let's say you're in the shower and you fall. I don't keep my phone anywhere near the shower because it's an expensive device. But, I can hit the Silent Beacon button. What it does is it either calls or texts the numbers I have pre-determined. As part of the message, it also sends your location information. This can be especially important if the number being called is 911 (not all areas let you auto-dial 911).

The big difference here is that it is your numbers being contacted in an emergency situation, rather than calling a stranger in a call center. The people in your life, or the direct connection to local emergency services, means there is no middle man and no need for those monthly charges. This makes the product approachable for a wider range of customers, giving peace of mind to both the wearer and their support circle.

You can get the Silent Beacon for $99 from the company or from Amazon. For more information, check out the Silent Beacon website.

Interview by Marlo Anderson of The Tech Ranch.

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ohsnap is the mobile phone holder that doesn't stick @ CES 2020

2020-02-28

As phones have gotten bigger, the desire for a device to make holding your phones easier has become a common one. One product has stormed the industry, but it leaves a lot to be desired. To address the limitations of the PopSocket, the team at ohsnap has created a new phone holder that is versatile enough for everyone.

If you have ever had a PopSocket on your phone, you know that you immediately lose the ability to use wireless chargers. For those of us who use them in our homes, offices, and cars, that is an unacceptable loss. With the ohsnap phone grip, though, that is no longer a problem. The main portion of the holder is removable, making it small enough to work with most, if not all, Qi plates.

As far as standard operation, the ohsnap holder is far more pleasant while in use and while collapsed. While closed, the ohsnap is about a third the depth of a PopSocket. That makes it far easier to keep in a pocket, especially if you keep it in your back pocket. When in use, it is also far better. The outsides come together to create a ring, which can be put around your finger. This usage is far more comfortable than wrapping your fingers around a big circle. The ring can be closed so that it won't fall off. The center iece is also rotatable, making it useful in portrait and landscape mode.

When not using it as a standard holder, you can also use the ohsnap with the included magnetic plate. The plate has micro suction cups on the back, so it can stick to just about any smooth surface. The phone holder then connects magnetically to the plate so it can be used just about anywhere. If you have another magnetic surface, such as your refrigerator or microwave, you can also stick it directly to that.

The ohsnap is available now for $19 with additional accessories available as well. For more information on the products or to order one for yourself, check out their website.

Interview by Scott Ertz of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology and Christopher Jordan of The Talking Sound.

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Mindtech Global takes the hassle and bias out of AI training @ CES 2020

2020-02-28

Anyone who has done any work with artificial intelligence can tell you that collecting enough data to train the AI can be as difficult as building the neural networks themselves. There are some decent libraries for standard data sets but say you needed to train an AI to identify a particular model of a product category. Finding the right images to train the system could be near impossible. To help solve this problem is Mindtech Global.

The company specializes in creating synthetic training data to help take an artificial intelligence system from concept to knowledgable. There are all sorts of scenarios where real-world data is not possible. Take, for example, drone data. An airport isn't going to allow an AI creator to fly a drone in their airspace to train what a good or bad drone might look like. By using synthetic data from Mindtech Global, you can still train your system without the need to inconvenience the airport.

In addition to difficult or impossible scenarios, there is also a bias in training data. When Project Natal, which became Xbox Kinect, was first demonstrated in 2009, it was done entirely with light-skinned people on stage. This is because the detection algorithms were not able to detect people with darker skin tones. Artificial intelligence systems face similar bias issues because of their training data. Humans tend to teach based on our experiences, which drives an AI to miss things. With the synthetic datasets, we eliminate humanity's tendency towards unconscious bias.

Currently, a lot of the bias is detected and solved by humans. For example, if a data scientist notices that systems have issues detecting people wearing backpacks, they will ensure that the dataset will include more images of people wearing backpacks. That means that future training sessions will have improved identification of people with backpacks.

To learn more about the Mindtech Global technology or engage their services, check out their website.

Interview by Scott Ertz of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology and Christopher Jordan of The Talking Sound.

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BenjiLock is bringing their biometrics to new locks @ CES 2020

2020-03-01

If ever there was a poster company for CES Eureka Park success story, it would be BenjiLock. Since we first met founder Robbie Cabral at his first CES several years ago, he has gone on to huge success. After taking his prototype to Shark Tank, Robbie and his Shark Tank investor Kevin O'Leary, took the brand to the team at Hampton Products because of their expertise in security products. Today, the company has grown its product line in new and exciting ways.

The original product in the line, the biometric padlock, has been improved, with new colors being added to the category. The closest companion, the luggage lock, has also seen improvements in the last year. The most important addition is the soft lock, which is a common feature of luggage locks.

2020 is going to see a new collection of devices from the company, however. The most prominent will be the BenjiLock Deadbolt. This product is the perfect pairing of the technology of BenjiLock and the knowhow of Hampton Products. This lock has everything you could possibly want from a connected deadbolt, and more. In addition to the biometrics that BenjiLock is known for, the lock features a physical key plus keypad. The lock also works with the Array platform, making it not just a connected deadbolt, but a smart one, too.

Other new products for 2020 include a bike lock and a drawer lock. The bike lock will feature two lengths, and all of what we expect from BenjiLock, including a physical key - the hallmark of the product line. The drawer lock will allow you to turn nearly any standard drawer into a locked one. This can be good if you have a questionable roommate, or if you are just trying to protect valuables. The new products will premiere as the year goes on.

For more information on the current BenjiLock products, to make a purchase, or to follow the company's development, check out their website.

Interview by Scott Ertz of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology and Christopher Jordan of The Talking Sound.

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Array by Hampton is making your home smart and secure @ CES 2020

2020-03-01

In addition to the upcoming BenjiLock deadbolt, the Array by Hampton smarthome platform is growing and making a name for itself. We saw the beginnings of the platform in 2018, and all of the excitement from that CES is coming together at this CES.

But, the crown jewel for the year is the BenjiLock deadbolt. The technology that Robbie created being implemented into a deadbolt is exciting enough, but the depth of the product offing is more than just that. The technology works in extreme weather conditions, which was an important piece of the puzzle for CEO Kim Kelley. They also focused on battery life, so that the lock maintains its convenience longterm, rather than having to charge or change a battery on a regular basis. Mr. Kelley says that it's the difference between a technology company trying to figure out how to make a lock, and a security company adding technology into their existing line.

But, what makes the BenjiLock deadbolt extra exciting is its integration into the Array smarthome platform. Kim Kelley differentiates smarthome from connected home by saying that a smarthome does what you want when you want. That's an important line because it sets the expectations for what Array is capable of. This smarthome platform ranges from indoor lights and cameras to the outdoor coach lights and garage door opener.

One of the key features of Array is Lockdown Mode. This is the sweep you make at night to make sure your lights are off, the doors are closed and locked, the garage door is down, and the thermostat is set to the right temperature. Through the Array platform, you can make this sweep virtually, from the comfort of your bed or the relative comfort of a hotel room across the country.

To beef up the security credentials of the system is the coach lights. We saw these in action in 2018, and they are truly impressive. They look like a traditional outdoor light, intended to be part of your home - not like a traditional security light with a giant camera attached. But, they do offer a security camera with impressive quality, and the ability to send triggers into the system based on motion by people. This is always an important distinction because a traditional motion light turns on if someone drives too close to your house in their car. There is also a tethered light so that one on each side can come on, dim, and turn off together, without having to have a camera on each light.

The Array by Hampton line of products will be releasing throughout the year. For more information on the products available, check out the company's website.

Interview by Scott Ertz of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology and Christopher Jordan of The Talking Sound.

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GENNY by Watergen creates drinking water from the air @ CES 2020

2020-03-01

For many people in the world, including here in the United States, drinking water can be a challenge. Some people won't drink tap water, either because it isn't clean or there is a belief that it isn't. Many people, either at home or work, have water delivered, which adds a monthly cost to their budget. But, delivered water comes with an environmental hit, as well. GENNY by Watergen gives you the ability to have that clean water without the negatives.

The company makes a product that allows you to create water out of the air. The Watergen product, known as GENNY, looks like a standard water cooler, but without the bottle on the top. The GENNY is able to generate 8 gallons of water per day with nothing more than a connection to power. The system also uses a series of filtration to ensure that the water is clean and tastes good, which is an important aspect.

In addition to enhancing the daily lives of many people, the GENNY can also be used as part of an emergency scenario. For those of us who live in an area where storms take down our utilities, fresh drinking water can be a problem. Before a hurricane, we always fill our bathtubs with water, in the event that we lose water (which happens). And, because the device runs on standard power, it can be hooked up to solar power to produce water even if the power is out.

Combining the solar and electric into a single setup also allows the GENNY to be used in parts of the world where drinking water is always a problem. In third world areas, the GENNY can be used to augment the lack of available water.

The GENNY is available now. To learn more about the product and the rest of the line, check out the Watergen website.

Interview by Scott Ertz of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology and Christopher Jordan of The Talking Sound.

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FaceMe from CyberLink helps create custom IoT experiences @ CES 2020

2020-03-01

Sometimes CES introduces us to a new aspect of a company that we think we know well. A great example of that at this show was CyberLink. If you have ever used a Windows computer, which of course you have, you've used the company's technology. They are responsible for much of the computer's video capabilities, from DVD playback to online streaming. But, this year, the company is showing off FaceMe, an AI platform for facial recognition.

Now, this type of facial recognition isn't like what has been in the news lately. FaceMe is a closed-loop system designed to allow companies to offer you customizations on Internet of Things products. For example, maybe a company that makes a home medication dispensing product could use the system to pick out the different members of the family and dispense the correct medication, without the person having to identify themselves. This would make using the device easier for older people who might not be comfortable with technology.

The history of the product is unique, in that it wasn't meant to be a product. CyberLink helped create a product for virtual makeup called YouCam Makeup. For that product, they created a technology for recognizing and identifying faces. Because of the success of both the product and the technology, the company saw the value of the system and turned it into FaceMe.

FaceMe is designed to work on just about any platform so that it can enhance products varying from smart mirrors to robotics. The technology is already being used in products on the market, and CyberLink is looking to partner with more companies to help their customers customize their products.

If you are working on a project and would like to learn more about the FaceMe platform, check out the company's website.

Interview by Scott Ertz of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology and Christopher Jordan of The Talking Sound.

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GaN Systems is making big laptop chargers history @ CES 2020

2020-03-01

Anyone who owns a laptop knows just how unwieldy the power supplies can be. They are so big and heavy that the common term is "power brick." That term makes it very clear what the devices are all about. However, it turns out that it doesn't have to be like this. GaN Systems has designed a chip that makes these chargers far smaller.

The size and weight of the laptop charger that CEO Jim Witham brought with him, using the Gan Systems technology, were surprising. Rather than being large and heavy, this charger was about the size and weight of a cellular charger. Despite the significant reduction in size and weight, the charger is able to produce the same amount of power as the bulky charger that your current laptop uses. This could make both daily life and travel life easier for many people.

But, it is not only usable in laptop chargers. The chip can be used to miniaturize power conversion systems for all types of devices. Take, for example, the electric vehicle industry. By the year 2040, it is expected that there will be 65 million electric vehicles sold. Those vehicles are all going to need specialized chargers and reducing the footprint of those chargers in your garage is going to be a benefit to many EV owners.

The GaN Systems technology is available in products today. The chips are also available to purchase by anyone developing a product. Often, we see components like this available only in bulk, or from the manufacturer, but GaN Systems wants the chips used, so they are available from suppliers like Mouser. The company also has reference designs and kits available to get you started.

For more information on the GaN Systems technology and the ways it can be used, check out the company's website.

Interview by Scott Ertz of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology and Christopher Jordan of The Talking Sound.

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OxiCool has a wonderful solution to keep your home cool @ CES 2020

2020-03-02

Climate change certainly is quite a hot topic this century and the debates around it have been heating up exponentially in recent years. A good amount of people have taken notice and want to do what they can to aid in the solution to this ever-increasing world problem. And whether directly related to that or not, there are also a lot of businesses that are adding their solutions to the debate. Every year now, there are significant contributions to the technology in areas like recycling, electric vehicles and solar and wind power solutions.

OxiCool, based in the United States, is one of these companies that want to make a difference and has decided to take it head-on with an impressive new use of technology. Air conditioning has become more and more prevalent as the temperatures throughout this county have risen. There are states in the northern section of the country that, in the past, residents have never even needed to have air conditioners in their homes. And even those that eventually felt the need to had a little assistance with cooling only used a window unit or two in key spots of the house. This is quickly changing to where more and more residents in these areas are beginning to add central A/C units to cover the same square footage as the heating in their home. Not only are the emissions, in general, from air conditioning bad for the environment, but traditional air conditioning units account for almost one half of the electricity used in homes during the summer. This is where OxiCool is breezing in with a cool solution.

The company claims to have a simple solution for a problem that has puzzled the cooling and air conditioning industry for over 100 years. By using only natural elements (i.e. earth, water, air, and fire), OxiCool produces zero emissions from its refrigerant and therefore reduces the ever-increasing demand that is placed on the aging power grids throughout the country. As a bonus and equally important to some, the system is incredibly silent. So you not only get to save money but also relax in total comfort while also helping to save the planet. Per their website, OxiCool is the only air conditioning system in the world that uses no toxic substances of any kind and produces zero emissions from its refrigerant, as it uses only pure water as the only refrigerant.

So, how does all of this work? Excellent question. Without getting into all of the technical information that you can learn by watching the full interview in combination with visiting their website, OxiCool is powered by what they have coined, OciCell, which are inside of a closed-loop. Therefore they are maintenance-free, molecular sieve cells that are manufactured in a cleanroom. And when complete, not even a single water molecule can escape through the life of the system. So low maintenance that you never even have to add or change the water, or the molecular sieves inside.

On to what I'm sure is everybody's next question... Price. One would expect that such new and cutting edge technology would come at a price. And we have to say that we were pleasantly surprised to learn that, although these units are not cheap by any means, they aren't that much more than replacing with a standard unit, when you consider how new it is and all that is involved with its creation. Per the website, a 20,000 BTU/hr system with four in-home heat exchangers is estimated to be about $10,000. They are currently available on their website for pre-order with a fully refundable down payment of only $100. The units are being manufactured in the order as each is received.

Interview by Don Baine, The Gadget Professor.

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NightWatch armband can detect epileptic seizures at night @ CES 2020

2020-03-05

Sixty million people suffer from epilepsy across the world, and 50 to 100,000 people die in their sleep as a result of epilepsy, according to the CEO, Jeroen van den Hout. To reduce the amount of deaths due to epileptic seizures at night, a group of neurologists in the Netherlands developed the NightWatch, a wireless armband, through a collaboration between Kempenhaeghe and SEIN epilepsy centers, the University Medical Centre (UMC) Utrecht, Eindhoven University of Technology, the Epilepsiefonds (Epilepsy Foundation), and patient representatives. This partnership resulted in a company named LivAssured.

The NightWatch is worn on the upper arm during sleep. It measures the person's heart rate and monitors their movement, and it can detect tonic, tonic-clonic, hyper motor, and clustered myoclonic seizures. Any abnormalities in the heart rate or movement are immediately detected and sent to the base station via an audio and visual alert. The signal can also be forwarded to mobile telephones and call systems as well if the NightWatch wearer lives independently. Up to 5 telephone numbers can be called in the event of an emergency. The wearer can also opt to click the emergency button if they need immediate attention. This base station can be monitored by parents or the caregiver so that the person suffering from an epileptic seizure can be attended to quickly. Data collected by the NightWatch can be analyzed via the NightWatch portal. One can use this portal to understand what occurred during the night and why the signal was sent.

The NightWatch, launched about a year and a half ago, is clinically proven to be effective and a certified medical device. It is proven to detect up to 96% of the most dangerous seizures. Approximately 1000 devices have been sold and have received positive feedback. Currently, it is available only in Europe. For more information, please visit their website.

Interview by Don Baine, The Gadget Professor.

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Ebb Sleep make sleepless nights a thing of the past @ CES 2020

2020-03-05

Oh, that ever-elusive "good night's sleep." Who among us doesn't have a problem with falling and/or staying asleep? And even those lucky few who don't have some kind of sleep disorder are most certainly surrounded by family and friends that share stories. So either way, it's just exhausting! For the sleepless who are looking for a solution, there's Ebb.

Many of the people who experience sleeplessness do so because they find themselves with a "racing mind." This means that, while they lay in bed, they experience thoughts that they cannot control. These thoughts, or possibly the attempt to grab ahold of those thoughts and make sense of them, can prevent someone from finding the rest they seek. Years worth of studies have pointed to various causes, but brain-imaging studies have suggested that a cooler frontal cortex can ease or eliminate this restless mind scenario.

Ebb's sleep technology addresses this issue in particular, by cooling the front of the brain. It does this through a fairly simple looking sleep band that sits across the forehead. The band regulates the temperature of your frontal cortex, which lies directly behind the forehead, hopefully resulting in a calmer mind and a night of more restful sleep.

Because the band is designed to be used while you sleep, it has some special elements to ensure that it is comfortable to sleep with. The back of the band, where the cooling process takes place, does so through a series of cushions. That makes it both comfortable to wear and effective in its goal. It's natural to be wary of technology of this nature. Because of this, the company offers a number of studies showing the effectiveness of the product.

For more information on Ebb and to read the case studies, check out the product website.

Interview by Don Baine, The Gadget Professor.

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EyeQue allows you to monitor your vision and order glasses @ CES 2020

2020-03-05

If you wear glasses, you know that the process of getting new ones can be a real pain. You can go and get new ones made with your existing prescription, but that isn't necessarily a great idea. What if your vision has changed significantly? You don't want to get stuck with the wrong lenses for the life of your glasses. But, getting your eyes tested requires getting an appointment, going to the doctor, waiting on the prescription. But, there is a better way thanks to EyeQue.

EyeQue is a personal vision tracking system. Using the system, you can track your sight, order glasses, and all with a guarantee. Here's how it works: A small microscope attaches to your smartphone. Using this scope, the accompanying app is able to test your eyesight and determine your vision capabilities. Using those results, you can then order glasses online that match your vision. If you don't like the results of your order, either the quality of your vision or the glasses themselves, you have a 30-day money-back guarantee.

The best part of the whole system is that it does not require all of the overhead of the normal process. The device can be purchased for home use, meaning that you can go through the entire process without ever leaving the house. It also means that the entire family can get their eyes tested whenever they feel that something isn't right with just a single scope. And, because it is a personal device, it means that you can track your own vision over time, and see changes for better or worse.

The EyeQue system is available now, with vision monitoring kits starting at $69 and ranging to $159. To learn more about the service and the test kits, check out the company's website.

Interview by Don Baine, The Gadget Professor.

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Hoop Home is a security camera designed to be your helper @ CES 2020

2020-03-06

One of the most common product categories at CES is security cameras. There are so many on the floor, and very few of them stand out in the crowd. However, every once in a while we encounter a camera that is truly different, and that certainly describes Hoop Home. This camera is designed by a company that knows cameras, as parent company C+A Global also owns the Ritz Camera retail chain.

But, what makes Hoop Home special? Let's start with the physical aspects of the product line. The standard camera is designed to be very small and is available in interesting colors. While most security cameras come in white or black, the Hoop Home line is available in red, blue, and green, in addition to grey and white. The Hoop Plus has all of this, plus the ability to pan 350 degrees and tilt 90 degrees. This makes it a very versatile camera that can be used in a lot of places.

However, it is the software that makes the Hoop Home line truly special. Of course, it has all of the features that you would expect from a security camera. However, it also has a number of unique learning capabilities. By using facial recognition, it can identify the people who are regularly in your home and learn their patterns. This makes it so that the device can let you know when something is out of the ordinary.

For example, if your kids are supposed to come home at 3 pm and they don't, you can get a notification. Or, you can also get a notification if they come home with friends when they are not supposed to. It also means that you never have to worry about getting a warning because a cat is in the driveway.

To learn more about the Hoop Home line of cameras and how they work, check out the product website.

Interview by Don Baine, The Gadget Professor.

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BeHear is enhanced hearing that looks like headphones @ CES 2020

2020-03-06

There are millions of Americans that need hearing enhancement but won't get it. For a lot of people, it can be a fact of cost, but for others, it has to do with "feeling old." That's because the look and feel of hearing aids have always looked a certain way, and that look is associated with older people. Luckily, BeHear by Wear & Hear has an advanced hearing device that doesn't look like a standard hearing aid.

The BeHear device looks more like a pair of sports Bluetooth headphones than it does a hearing aid. That will make it attractive to a lot of people, especially younger people. It also has the ability to raise awareness about the wider range of options available to people with hearing difficulties today.

But, looks are only part of the equation. The most important part of a hearing device is its ability to enhance the wearer's hearing. The company that makes the products, Alango Technologies, has a long history in the hearing space. Their software and algorithms are used in millions of devices across the industry. The company's software is focused on more than just strict volume, but also on focus.

As Don Baine mentions, his biggest personal issue with hearing aids is not the volume, but the clarity. Many traditional devices amplify the volume, but that causes problems in a crowded space. In a scenario like CES, he hears more background noise than active conversations. But, the technology built into the BeHear device is able to minimize the impact of noise and enhance the voices of people around you.

The BeHear hearing device is available now starting at $249, far below the general price of a hearing device. To learn more about the product line and purchase a device for yourself, head to the company website.

Interview by Don Baine, The Gadget Professor.

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Sensoria Health is making health devices all about you @ CES 2020

2020-03-06

We have had the pleasure of following Sensoria Health since our first trip to Collision in 2015. Even then, the company's technology was impressive, and it has come a long way in the past 5 years, certainly outgrowing our catchphrase of the week, "robot socks." Today, the company offers what they refer to as "Internet of Me" technology, with artificial intelligence solutions for health and aging scenarios.

But, it all comes back to the robot socks. In reality, the product is a pair of socks with various sensors built-in to monitor the health of your feet. This is important because your feet are literally the base of your body and often have the ability to detect and predict other health issues throughout the body.

The most obvious thing that can be detected is your gate or the way you walk and run. If your gate changes over time, it can indicate pain somewhere in the body. Often times, you might not even notice the pain consciously, though subconsciously you respond to it by taking pressure off of that part of the body. It ends up reporting as a difference in the way you walk and run.

The device can also be incredibly useful in the rehabilitation process. Rather than having to come into a rehab facility and endure regular testing of your gate, doctors can use the data produced by the Sensoria Health sock. It also gives those doctors the ability to see a true progression, as opposed to just small bits of data out of context. More data means better decisions, which in healthcare can be the difference between finding a rehab issue early and not being able to fully recover.

To learn more about Sensoria Health, the Internet of Me, and the connected sock, check out the company website.

Interview by Don Baine, The Gadget Professor.

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DFree uses ultrasound to help maintain bladder control @ CES 2020

2020-03-07

As we age, a lack of bladder control is something that many people suffer. For years, the only way to deal with it has been with medication or adult diapers. The first only works for a short while for some people, and diapers carry with them a social stigma. For most people, if they could simply know a little earlier when they needed to go, it would make a world of difference. That's where DFree comes in.

DFree is a small wearable device that is able to give the wearer that early warning sign that they need to be able to use the bathroom before an accident happens. This, of course, allows the wearer to maintain a significantly higher level of normal life activity than medication or diapers usually would.

One of the best aspects of the DFree device is that it is non-invasive. That means that the entire device is external to the body, so no expensive medical procedures. It also means that people who are squeamish about medical stuff can use it without having to address their concerns. Instead, the device uses ultrasound to monitor your bladder all day. That data is constantly analyzed to detect when you need to use the bathroom and gives you an alert through your phone or tablet before it is too late.

The product comes in two varieties: one for personal use and one for professional use. The first is designed for those who are aging in place or people who are trying to live a more independent life. The second is designed to be used in hospitals and assisted living facilities where more than just the wearer can get alerts.

The DFree system is available now to rent or own. To learn more about the product, check out the company's website.

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Ausounds shows a true wireless earbud with great sound @ CES 2020

2020-03-07

Our team is always on the lookout for great audio products. While there are a lot of speaker and headphone companies on the market, very few of them actually focus on producing a product that reproduces music the way it was intended. One of those companies is Ausounds, which produces headphones and earphones.

Joined by Marcus Sanchez, the company's marketing director, we were introduced to the AU-Stream Hybrid true wireless earbuds. These earbuds manage to have hybrid noise cancellation, true audio replication care of titanium drivers, and an extremely attractive design, all while keeping their price under $200.

Even more impressively, the AU-Stream Hybrid earbuds pack incredible power capabilities. The earbuds themselves can run for 9 hours, which is nearly unheard of in true wireless earbuds. When combined with the battery capacity built into the case, it is extended to 25 hours worth of use, meaning the case can charge the earbuds nearly 2 full charges. In addition, the charging case supports rapid wireless charging, meaning that you can simply place it on a Qi charging pad and let it go. It also sports a USB-C port for charging when you don't have Qi available.

On top of all of these features, the earbuds are IPX5 waterproof. That means that they will reject water projected from a nozzle, making them more than ideal for working out. That is an aspect that many earbuds, even those in the upper tier of products, miss. True wireless earbuds are so often used for exercise, and they need to be able to handle that activity, as well as sound good.

The AU-Stream Hybrid earbuds are available in four colors: black, dark grey, red, and gold, and retail for $189.95. Their smaller cousin, the AU-Stream, is available in four colors: white, dark grey, red, and gold, and retails for $99.95. More information and purchasing options can be found at the Ausounds website.

Interview by Scott Ertz of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology.

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Blockchain Router brings privacy and security to the web @ CES 2020

2020-03-07

The internet is an increasingly dangerous and overly regulated place. Much of what we originally loved about the internet is quickly disappearing into memory. A lot of the blame is because of the infrastructure of the internet. While it was originally billed as a global network, it does still require a centralized planning committee (ICANN). But, there is another internet - the decentralized internet, which the Blockchain Router aims to make more accessible.

Normally, access to the decentralized internet is a bit complicated. It requires special software, system settings, and more. But, the new Blockchain Router takes away all of the difficulty of accessing the network by placing all of the specialized software and settings into special hardware. The device sits between your modem and computers, where your existing router lives, and gives access to your entire network.

The content on the decentralized web, whose domains end in .eth, are accessible only within the context of this network. While it is easy for governments, schools, and more to block certain domains and content on the web, it is nearly impossible to do the same on the decentralized web. This means that sites that run inside the network aren't subject to censorship and can be used to promote prohibited content, such as democracy.

In addition to accessing content that is not available on the traditional, public internet, the Blockchain Router also helps to obfuscate your browsing of the standard internet. This is important because people are tracking you and collecting your personal information all over the web. Think of the Blockchain Router as your internet bodyguard, protecting your information and browsing.

While the router runs on blockchain technology, it is important to note that it has absolutely nothing to do with cryptocurrency or virtual tokens. The blockchain aspect of the product is about the decentralization of data, not about rewarding the verification of audit logs.

The Blockchain Router is available for pre-order now on the company's website.

Interview by Scott Ertz of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology and Christopher Jordan of The Talking Sound.

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The Tactigon makes computer input a natural motion @ CES 2020

2020-03-11

One of the biggest issues with virtual reality experiences is the controllers. Too many of them require knowledge of the controller design, which is difficult when your face is covered with a headset. The ideal scenario is motion controllers, but they usually require additional sensors, like the PlayStation Eye. However, an intriguing new device, The Tactigon, is looking to fix that problem.

The Tactigon is a wearable controller that fits over the hand. Using only internal sensors, like accelerometers and gyroscopes, the device is able to detect motion. Developers and users are then able to build commands based on gestures reported by the device. For example, a developer could build circle, push and pull, etc., into their products and respond to those motions. They could also use direct input, such as for a driving simulator.

But, The Tactigon is more than just a VR controller. The device can be used for a large variety of computer and mobile products. One that was especially intriguing was for robotics. Using the direct input features of the device, you could create direct control of a robotic device. This could be a fascinating new input method for FIRST robotics teams, though likely not legal during competition.

Another interesting robotics application is for programming cobots. These robotic helpers are designed to be programmed to assist in repetitive tasks. Think of the robotic arms you've seen in videos from car factories, but often on a smaller scale. Normally, these robots have to be programmed through a painfully detailed series of steps. However, by using the input from The Tactigon, you could program the cobot simply by moving your arm and the robotic arm would follow your motion. Then, by saving the macro, the arm can replicate the motion unendingly.

To learn more about The Tactigon, check out the company's website.

Interview by Scott Ertz of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology and Christopher Jordan of The Talking Sound.

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Concha Labs makes custom hearing solutions affordable @ CES 2020

2020-03-11

Most of us consider hearing loss to be mostly confined to older people, but it affects people of all ages. One of those people is Amy Li, a dedicated member of the hearing industry who personally has hearing loss. She was approached after coming forward about her own hearing issues by others who felt that dealing with their hearing was too expensive. The result was Concha Labs.

The company's goal is to bring affordable hearing devices to people while improving the quality of the technology. The company's main focus is on software, designed to allow the wearer to conform the device to their own hearing profile. But, in addition to a standard profile, the software is able to adjust to various environmental scenarios, such as the noise of a convention center. This is a major change from standard hearing devices, which are tuned for the wearer, but not for the environment.

The tuning process is also very different. The normal process is to go into a doctor's office and perform an audio equivalent of an eye test. When the profile is created, it is usually wrong, causing the wearer to have to go back into the office to have it fine-tuned after a few days. With Concha Labs, you can perform your own test, which is more similar to an audio version of a full eye exam. This test is more detailed than the traditional test and creates a more accurate profile. It also prevents the need for the doctor's visits. And, because the profile is completely your own, you can make adjustments on the fly from your mobile device. So, if you are at a party, the symphony, or a convention center, you can use altered versions of your default profile to enhance your experience in these unique situations.

The Concha Labs technology is currently in beta in the company's Hearing Pods. As part of the beta test, a member can get the Hearing Pods for $800 (as opposed to the average of $5000 for traditional hearing aids), and $25 per month for the service, which includes the tuning, profiles, as well as replacement parts, such as batteries and ear tips. To join the beta or learn more about the company's technology, check out their website.

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BTU Protocol rewards you for traveling with cryptocurrency @ CES 2020

2020-03-11

Traveling can be expensive, coronavirus panic not included. Various websites have come about to try and make the process less expensive, even offering rewards. However, these rewards tend to be very restricting, both in the way they are earned and how they can be redeemed. For example, the service that we have used for years doesn't allow rewards to be redeemed on all types of rooms. Luckily, there's a new platform, BTU Protocol, which has a new way.

By using the of blockchain and cryptocurrency, BTU Protocol is able to minimize the cost of listings for the retailers, while providing better rewards for users. The company is currently focused on hotel and rental car listings but plans to bring other types of partners onboard in the future. Currently, they offer rentals from every major car company and hotel listings from many brands. In searching for hotels in Las Vegas, we found many of the major brands, as well as some of the Strip brands.

By limiting the cost of listing rooms and cars, the companies are able to maintain a higher margin while offering the same or lower prices as other platforms. In addition, the companies are able to offer rewards on each rental through the platform's cryptocurrency. Searching in Orlando for this weekend, most hotel rooms offer a 5% return in BTU. Those coins can be used to purchase products and services, including gift cards. They can also be traded among wallets.

In time, the company plans to allow you to also use your coins to make purchases within the platform, applying your rewards toward your rental costs. The platform is available now for iOS and Android and is free to use and to collect rewards. To learn more about the platform or to download the app, check out the company's website.

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b-hyve by Orbit is a smart timer to save water and money @ CES 2020

2020-03-13

For years, the expression "set it and forget it" was a bad thing when it came to home sprinkler controls. Owners would often turn them on at the beginning of the season and off at the end and leave them alone. This behavior led to overwatering by about 50%. That's because basic timers aren't able to take environmental conditions, weather patterns , or other factors into consideration. All they could do was start and stop at a pre-determined time. But the b-hyve by Orbit has brought a whole new level of control to your yard.

The b-hyve line of products offers Wi-Fi-connected sprinkler controls that add smarts to your yard. These controllers are able to do things like watch the weather to make sure that you aren't watering right before, during, or after a rainstorm. This is obviously a huge waste of water, plus it can be bad for your plants to give them too much water. There are also areas that are often under watering restrictions, and it might be illegal to water within a certain range of a storm. The newest model adds new, longer-range network connectivity, allowing it to control equipment wirelessly, rather than needing to have everything run manually through the controller.

Because the b-hyve is connected to the internet, it gives you the ability to monitor the activities even when you're away. When you're traveling, you can still see how much water is being used, when schedules are being skipped because of weather, and even see future schedules based on expected weather. If you need, you can change the manual schedule remotely, and get real-time updates. The app is available for iOS and Android, plus has support for Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa.

The b-hyve products are available from Amazon, Home Depot, and Lowe's. To learn more about the product line, check out the company's website.

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Wonder Painter brings your drawings and photos to life @ CES 2020

2020-03-13

As a kid, almost everyone imagined themselves as the protagonist in their favorite stories. Heck, most adults do it when they read. However, those picture books never actually feature your face, right? Wonder Painter has created a technology that can directly bring any drawing or photo to life. The technology can allow publishers to use the reader's drawing or photo as an integral part of their storytelling experience.

Imagine a story about two kids going on an adventure - it's a fairly standard kids book concept. However, using Wonder Painter's technology, that story can feature you and your best friend as the kids going on said adventure. During the story, the two of you need a horse to get across a large field. Simply draw your own horse and the drawing comes to life as your transportation. This is nearly every kid's dream scenario and it is now a possibility.

The company has published a few demo apps to the Apple App Store to show off the basics of what their technology can do. While these demos are a ton of fun, the really important part is the technology. It is available in a platform-agnostic way, making it possible to build for the web, iOS, Android, Windows, Linux, macOS, and more. The company licenses this technology to content creators to allow them to make their own products and services more interactive. They are currently working with LG, Baidu, Alibaba, and more to make interactive applications a reality.

If you want to see the technology in action, check out the Wonder Painter apps in the App Store or interactive demo on the company's website. You can also learn about the SDK, Cloud service, and ask for a private demo of the development tech if you're working on a project that can use it.

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Sketchboard Pro is a digital artist's new best friend @ CES 2020

2020-03-13

If you have ever tried to do any form of artwork on a traditional tablet, you know that it can be physically exhausting. That's because of the general design of a consumer tablet. A small bezel around the screen is nice and convenient when you're reading, browsing Facebook, or playing a videogame, but it isn't great when drawing. Even when sketching our studio design before CES, the design of our tablet was uncomfortable. But, for those who work on tablets regularly, the Sketchboard Pro will make it a better experience.

The Sketchboard Pro looks fairly simple at first glance. It's a flat board with a handle and a gap for an iPad. But, in reality, it is a significantly more advanced product than that. The size and shape are designed to make drawing on the tablet more like drawing on a drafting board. The wide border around the screen gives you somewhere to lean on while you draw or write, meaning you don't have to hover your arm in the air. It also offers feet on all four corners, allowing you to raise it for landscape or portrait mode.

The actual iPad gap is incredibly well thought out as well. There is a small hole at the bottom which is designed to allow you to plug the iPad in while you are using it. You can run the power from the bottom through the hole and into the tablet. The Sketchboard Pro also has magnets in the gap to hold the iPad in place. That way you can pick up the Sketchboard and walk around with it, without worrying about your expensive tablet ejecting itself.

The Sketchboard Pro is available for pre-order on Indiegogo InDemand. To pre-order the product or learn more about its uses and features, check out the company's website.

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BuddyPhones protect kids' hearing while listening to music @ CES 2020

2020-03-14

Kids have an ever-growing collection of electronic devices. From portable gaming devices to phones and tablets, many of these electronics offer the ability for kids to use headphones. However, kids tend to not understand the lasting effects of misusing headphones, especially the effects of loud music and sounds. Fortunately, BuddyPhones has taken the task of protecting these kids' hearing into consideration when building their headphones.

The company offers a wide range of products designed specifically for the sensitive and developing ears of children. The headphones have attenuation built into them, meaning that no matter how loud the wearer turns up the volume on their device, the headphones will max out at a certain volume. This will protect the child's hearing, keeping them from having hearing problems later in life.

For years, BuddyPhones have been available as standard headphones in a variety of styles and designs. The company has characters, like robots and unicorns, on their headphones to make kids more interested in wearing the product. In addition to the volume limiting, they also focus on the headphones being rugged because kids can be hard on their devices. This year, the company is showing off a few new products, including gaming headphones that include a microphone, which can be removed and used as regular headphones.

The headphones range in price, starting at $15 for standard headphones and running through $89 for Bluetooth headphones. In addition, the range offers waterproof, active noise canceling (ANC), and more. All of the products offer the smart volume limiter feature. The products are available at retailers worldwide, including Amazon. To learn more about the company's products, technology, and goals, and to see the entire line of products, listed by age range, head over to the company's website.

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KODAK Smart Home offers quality and privacy for your family @ CES 2020

2020-03-14

The home is getting smarter as we add sensors and controllers to nearly every aspect of our daily lives. Some of these devices are simply connected, requiring you to make decisions, while others make decisions on their own. Both types of products require a particular level of trust in the company, as you are sharing data about the inside of your home with them. Not all of the companies involved can be trusted, but one brand that has always been associated with family activities and trust is Kodak, which is now offering the KODAK Smart Home line of products.

One of the first products from the KODAK Smart Home is a baby monitor. This plays into the history and knowledgebase of Kodak, in that it combines the company's decades of family relationships with the long-standing focus on cameras. The cameras and receivers are wireless, so there is no need to run cables. They come paired out of the box, so there is no real setup required. And, because the company knows that wireless reception can be a real pain because of things like walls, they also have pre-paired range extenders. Both sides have rechargeable batteries so that you can take the whole setup with you.

The KODAK Smart Home also offers security cameras, again leaning into their camera legacy. These cameras are also wireless, two-way audio, and can be monitored remotely. All of the current models are full HD (1080p), meaning that the video quality will far more useful than most security products. They can also record locally to SD cards rather than streaming to the outside world. They also offer the ability to be used with 9 other security cameras, so you can build a full-home system.

To learn more about the KODAK Smart Home product line, check out their website.

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CrazyCap purifies your water on the go in just 60 seconds @ CES 2020

2020-03-14

For a lot of people, clean water can be incredibly difficult or expensive. Having water delivered to your home, special devices in the kitchen or on the roof, or even purchasing bottled water, can be out of the question. The idea of cleaning existing water is as old as humanity itself and is constantly improving. But, for the most part, the idea has not been portable - until recently. CrazyCap has taken the idea of treating water and put it in the palm of your hand - or, more accurately, on the top of your bottle.

The CrazyCap is an accessory that screws onto the top of many popular water bottles and allows you to kill the bacteria that might be in it. It does this in just 60 seconds, thanks to the integrated deep UV LED light. That light can more than just kill, but instead destroy, microorganisms in the water.

The product has up to a 7-day battery charge, depending on how much it is used. Charging the cap is easy, by attaching a wireless charger to the top. The decision was made to go wireless instead of a standard USB-C plug because they wanted to ensure that the entire product is waterproof. Waterproofing the product makes it more usable for people who are outdoor enthusiasts, like hikers and kayakers.

While the product is designed for water cleaning, it can clean other items as well. If you power it on and hold it a few inches above the surface, you can clean phones and tablets, desks and counters, and a whole lot more. During the COVID-19 coronavirus panic, this could be a huge bonus for people.

The CrazyCap 2 is available now for $59 on its own, or with a reusable bottle for $69. To learn more about CrazyCap, check out their website.

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EZCast bridges the casting gap at both work and play @ CES 2020

2020-03-19

Michael Liggett, Product Manager, North America, for EZCast shared some of the impressive features of the EZCast line at CES 2020. EZCast makes a wide range of products for the consumer and corporate market for digital casting from a variety of devices.

EZCast Pro lets consumers cast 4K, 60 Hz, from the EZCast app, AirPlay, Chromecast and others. It interconnects with systems like Google Home, with a straightforward plug and play puck. EZCast is device agnostic, allowing Android users and Apple users to be friends, says Liggett. Additionally, you can stream to a non-smart device, or a previously unavailable device, like a hotel room TV.

The EZCast Beam J2 is a portable mini projector that uses the latest DLP technology and combines HDMI, USB and Wi-Fi interfaces to support screen mirroring from iOS, Android, Windows and Mac smart devices. It also doubles as a power bank. It has similar capabilities to the other wireless capabilities of the Pro, so you can piggyback onto the larger network. The projector can also be turned sideways, putting it into portrait mode. It comes with a remote, tripod mount and easy, accessible controls.

The Pro AV line also includes 4K technology and is good for app-based projects, operating as a collaborative server that allows users to annotate over streamed or projected content, including a shared whiteboard. The ProCast app allows a one-to-many cast function. The devices also provide for AirPlay. The Pro line utilizes dual-band RF technology and ethernet.

EZ Cast's Quatro Pod System provides even more functionality with wireless HDMI. It includes a mini display port and POE Ethernet port, allowing for collaborative presentations from a podium or conference space.
MSRP ranges from $70 for the EZCast Pro up to $1099 for the QuatroPod package, with a range of costs in between for individual units.

Visit [https://www.ezcast.com/" class="UpStreamLink">EZCast or EZCast Pro for more information.

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AirPix aerial cameras take selfies to a whole new level @ CES 2020

2020-03-19

Greg Appelhof joined us at CES 2020, to tell us about AirPix, an HD aerial camera. AirSelfie aerial cameras are essentially little drones that can be tossed in the air or launched with an app and remotely operated to take photos from their aerial vantage points. The devices use facial recognition to take a photo and then return to the person it took a photo of.

AirSelfie launched in June 2019 on crowdfunding platforms and generated over $2 million in sales globally, with about 18,000 units sold across 105 countries. Appelhof shared some new products since its earlier launch: AirPix Plus and AIrDuo.

AirPix Plus with a curvilinear design, with stronger thrust from brushless motors. The lens on the AirPix Plus can pivot for a wider range of photographic angles. The AirDuo is more advanced with higher picture quality. It features a front parallel path camera, as well as an electronic switching camera on the bottom, for the bird's eye view image. It also has a sensor at the top to help it avoid hitting the ceiling or anything else above it.

Each of the cameras comes with a power bank. The cameras each take 10 to 15 minutes of video and hundreds of photos. Autonomously, the camera takes only a single photo, but via the app, users can shoot as many photos as they'd like, and have more control over composition. Autonomously, however, the camera can recognize certain hand gestures to know whether to take a video or photo and when to return to the operator.

The cameras retail at $180 for the AirPix Plus and $220 for the Air Duo. You can see the full AirPix line at their website.

Post-event note: AirPix delivery on Kickstarter and Indiegogo has been slow and customers have been expressed frustration. Always do your own research before purchasing new products.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central.

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SPYDERISK provides risk assessment, saving time & money @ CES 2020

2020-03-19

Dr. Stephen C. Phillips is the founder and CEO of SPYDERISK, a new company that launched at CES that specializes in providing automated risk assessment for enterprise IT systems. SPYDERISK combines a comprehensive system model with an innovative machine reasoning capabilities and a detailed knowledge base of threats and control strategies to create a comprehensive view of the risks to a system.

SPYDERISK is aimed at larger companies that already have cybersecurity expertise embedded or cybersecurity consultancies who can use the tool when they're employed by other companies, with the goal of making it faster and better for those with the expertise to identify vulnerabilities. The tool is deployed online so customers can do their own automated risk assessment. It identifies issues and provides information on how to control or mitigate problems, and outputs reports for compliance audits and other uses. The reports suggest areas of concern for your network, including software products with known vulnerabilities. It then gives recommendations on potential next steps to mitigate those risks.

While it doesn't provide penetration testing, SPYDERISK assesses an entire system and can advise if testing at that level is indicated. Users can then identify which actions they're able or interested in taking to bring down their risk levels. Risks are automatically recalculated following control implementation, allowing customers to focus on the biggest risks to their systems.

One of the greatest benefits of the SPYDERISK assessment tool is the wealth of documentation it provides for compliance audits. Automating and speeding up assessment saves time and potentially money. In Europe, a company can be fined 4% of their revenue for a data breach, which can be a huge hit. SPYDERISK can help prevent those kinds of losses by helping companies stay vigilant.

For more information about the company, visit their website.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central.

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Nutricco takes the guesswork out of nutritional supplements @ CES 2020

2020-03-22

Pirogovsky, CEO of Nutricco, joined us at CES 2020 to share his solution for simple tools to help people with decision making about healthy diets, taking the guesswork of the nutritional supplement game.

There are 40,000 food tracking apps available, says, Pirogovsky, and while people download them, they don't really follow the recommendations they provide. Nutricco seeks to overcome that challenge by providing a way for subscribers to get the nutrients they need through a personalized mix of supplements relevant to where they are when they need it, and the amount they need at that time.

Nutricco has a three-part system that includes an app that guides and tracks your diet, an algorithm that provides personalized recommendations for the user's diet, and a dispensary that provides a personalized mix of supplements for the program subscriber.

Currently, says Pirogovsky, the supplement market is driven by budget. About 50% of the U.S. population uses supplements, he says - about 160 million daily users - with 30% of consumers - 55 million people - using three or more supplements daily. Most people don't understand what they're using or why, but rather make decisions on supplement use based on advertising. The problem isn't the supplement, he says, but getting the right supplement at the right time, when you need it.

Nutricco's subscription, with runs $399 per dispensing device and then $50 per month, includes the app, the supplements and the service for their device, a smart dispenser and a supplement supplier that assures clients an auto-renewable supply of essential daily nutrients. Nutricco's Smart Dispensing Machine holds up to 10 different types of dietary supplements stored in original bottles, providing the world's first all-in-one compliant and adherent connected home nutrient dispenser The app takes into consideration lifestyle and dietary habits. It balances nutritional supplement intake with appropriate times for supplements so that they don't interfere with one another on intake.

For more information on Nutrocco, check out their website.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central.

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FANUC brings collaborative robotics to small manufacturers @ CES 2020

2020-03-22

Claude Dinsmore, General Manager of FANUC America joined us at CES 2020 to share the latest on robotics technology at FANUC. This was their first time exhibiting at CES, where they took the opportunity to bring together achievements in robotics consumer technology with industrial applications. As CES, FANUC found a great environment for participating in the discovery of new solutions for new product development among small manufacturers.

FANUC America Corporation, headquartered in Rochester Hills, MI is the leading supplier of robots, CNC systems and factory automation in the US. Founded in 1982, the company has over 1,500 employees in the Americas and provides customer service, engineering, finance, human resources, IT, logistics, operations, manufacturing, product development, sales & marketing, and training in the industrial robotics field.

At CES, FANUC showcased collaborative robots, or cobots, industrial robots that workers can safely work with or near. FANUC has specialized in machine vision for 35 years and now brings that technology to the forefront of the collaborative robotics movement, including touch sensing, force, higher-level software, integration with web and cloud technologies and more. The company also carries IoT products and Edge-based technologies.

Dinsmore sees fewer home applications than integration with companies and products that touch the home consumer, with companies like Kohler and Google. Specifically, FANUC helps companies like Kohler with the automation that goes into the final product, like bathtubs, where robots apply the porcelain and provide other tedious and potentially dangerous automation solutions. Their goal in attending CES is to help introduce people to what's happening on the industrial side and to hear what's going on in the consumer side. FANUC wants to help participate with new ideas coming out of the industry showcase and to listen and hear what's needed on the consumer side.

Visit their website to learn more about the hardcore industrial technologies available to everyone from FANUC.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central.

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ARWall brings affordable high quality AR to filmmakers @ CES 2020

2020-03-22

Eric Narvette, Founder and Chief Marketing Officer of ARWall, was at CES 2020 to showcase the company's spatial imaging technology.

ARWall is the first and only solution that can deliver effectively zero-latency, with prior rigs built for TV broadcast delivering 4-12 frames of latency. With software and solutions built from the ground up for the average filmmaker, the result is a much more affordable solution with less hardware and headache.

ARWall got its start doing augmented reality special effects for film and television. The company created a solution that eliminated the need for greenscreen on productions, by updating rear projections, providing virtual environments that the actors could see, with more reactive lighting to sets, with true parallax.

The challenge that ARWall overcame was the locked camera issue, creating a smart software system providing six degrees of freedom for the camera itself, enabling filmmakers to get in close to the actor, use hand-held equipment, use a camera dolly or anything else, and the image behind the scene remains responsive to the point of view of the camera.

The next step was making the system accessible and interactive for the average consumer. The company addressed the consumer challenge by utilizing camera arrays, computer vision, and a variety of methods to help determine where the user is standing, essentially making the user the camera. Now, wherever the user looks or stands, the system responds as if there's a window that's been cut into the virtual space and allows them to move around inside that tracked volume.

The end goal is to create customer service kiosks at a store threshold, digital showrooms to display a large catalog, social activations with AR photo booths and games, interactive promotional signage, and much more. ARwall Interactive won "Best AR Experience" at CES 2020 DreamlandXR.

Learn more about ARWall at their website.

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Vasco Mini Translator connects speakers across languages @ CES 2020

2020-03-24

Maciek Goralski, of Vasco Electronics, was at CES sharing their translation devices and took some time to show us the Vasco Mini and talk about some of their other devices.

Vasco is a 10-year-old company specializing in language translators. Their translators, including the Mini, can translate more than 50 languages with an accuracy rate of more than 90%. The devices require no setup and can be used right out of the box. Users simply select their language and the language they want to translate, press the button, and speak. Vasco Mini immediately recognizes what is being said, translates it, and pronounce it out loud, like a native speaker.

A few things set the Vasco Translator apart. Where most translators need to be connected to a phone or wi-fi, the Vasco Translator utilizes a free, lifetime and unlimited sim card. As a result, the device can be be used in 150 countries and includes free updates. Because the devices have a screen that allows users to see the text of what the device hears, they're also able to make any corrections for a listener in real-time. Battery life is about 3-5 days, depending on the frequency of use.

Vasco Mini is the only translator in the world that can connect to five different translation engines and choose the best one depending on the language pair. It connects to servers in five continents to provide immediate translation, with support from Vasco's customer service team in each user's local language and country.

Other Vasco translators allow up to 100 people speaking different languages to connect in a chat room style setting for shared communications or to record a presentation or speech, transfer it to text, translate it to any language and then send the translated document through email.

The Vasco Mini 2 retails for $249. Visit the company's website to learn more.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central.

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Real Graphene USA is making batteries faster and stronger @ CES 2020

2020-03-24

As we continue to carry more and more electronic devices with us on a regular basis, from phones and tablets to headphones and watches, power is continually the challenge. Between the amount of time required to charge these devices to the lifespan of their batteries, we all seem to be challenged by our batteries. While some companies, like Samsung, have worked to address some of these charging issues, companies like Apple are known for constant battery problems. Luckily, work on battery science has led to Real Graphene USA, a company with enhanced battery technology.

By using graphene batteries, a user's experience with their devices can be completely changed. When used in a smartphone, a standard lithium-ion battery takes about 90 minutes to charge. In comparison, a battery from Real Graphene USA takes about 20 minutes to charge. While other companies have offered quick charging for phones, the biggest downfall is the heat produced. However, because the graphene batteries are designed for quick charging, they are able to accomplish the goal without producing all of the heat.

Another problem with traditional batteries is their lifespan. Anyone who owns an Apple device knows the struggle of having to carry an external battery charger for the inevitable death of a device. The company's graphene-based batteries, despite their fast charge time, manage to have a longer battery life than lithium-ion batteries in the same device.

While we see new battery technology show up at CES every year, the batteries from Real Graphene USA are different. The technology is far beyond conceptual, as they are already integrated into products. One of those products is a portable charger, which is about the size of a regular portable battery but has the ability to charge up to 105 watts at once.

To learn more about Real Graphene USA or purchase one of their products, check out the company's website.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central.

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Goal Zero is making solar power more accessible for home @ CES 2020

2020-03-24

Solar charging has become a hot topic in recent years. As the technology has continued to improve, companies have found new and exciting ways to enhance our daily lives using solar power. At CES 2015, we had the opportunity to speak with Goal Zero about their smaller consumer devices, such as their portable camping chargers and lights. But this year, Goal Zero joined us on the live show to talk about their line of larger solar solutions.

Many people have used a solar-powered calculator, maybe a radio, or even a battery charger, but the idea of whole-home solar power is gaining traction. This growth is thanks in part to creative new implementations of the technology, paired with large capacity battery systems. While most people think of solar as a single piece of technology - the panels on the house - the other essential aspect of the setup is a way to store that power for when the sun is gone.

The newest version of the Goal Zero home product, which was introduced and demoed at CES 2020, allows for 6000 watt-hours. An average home in Louisiana uses 42,000 watt-hours per day, while a home in Hawaii uses about 17,000 watt-hours per day. Depending on your usage, a single unit could power your home for as much as 8 hours, or as little as 3.5 hours, depending on where in the country you live.

But, these units are capable of being installed inline, which means that you can increase your overall capacity. With just a few units, you could power your whole home for days with no external. The most important part of the setup, however, is the solar charging, which allows you to charge the units off the grid. For those who live in places like Florida or Texas, where hurricane season can regularly leave you without power, this system can change your experience.

For more information about Goal Zero and their full line pf solar-based power products, check out the company's website and their products on Amazon.

Interview by Marlo Anderson of The Tech Ranch.

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The Sandman Clock 2 is here to wake you up in the morning @ CES 2020

2020-03-28

While most of the house has seen big technological upgrades over the past couple of years, the bedroom has been mostly ignored. Sure, there are smart bulbs and speakers, but those are not bedroom specific. One of the bedroom devices that has been ready for a makeover is the alarm clock. We've seen some companies take a crack at it, but most come across as trying too hard. But the new Sandman Clock 2 from Palo Alto Innovation has found the sweet spot.

The Sandman Clock doesn't look out of place, because it looks like an alarm clock. However, the product features a number of hidden enhancements to make the product better. First, the screen features 1.8" red LED numbers. The red was chosen specifically because it will not negatively affect your night vision in the way that blue light would. The brightness of the screen is adjustable, and can also adjust automatically based on the ambient light in the room. Of course, the most important part of the clock is the alarm, which is configurable through the companion app.

What really makes the Sandman Clock modern is the array of charging capabilities. Across the back are 4 USB charging ports. There are two USB-A and two USB-C ports, so you can plug in any cable you have. Because of the growing interest in Qi wireless charging, the company also offers a compatible Qi charging plate that can be plugged into one of the ports.

This is not the only home enhancing product from Palo Alto Innovation. The Node-ify Axon is a unique product that allows you to build a custom sensor array depending on your needs. The components connect together using magnets and can be used to verify that your fridge is the correct temperature, your garage door is closed, or your clothes are ready for the dryer.

The original Sandman Clock is available now, and the Sandman Clock 2 will be available later in the year. The Node-ify Axon is in active development. To learn more about the company and its products, check out their website.

Interview by Marlo Anderson of The Tech Ranch.

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The LUMINI Home mirror takes skincare to a whole new level @ CES 2020

2020-03-28

Heejin Eom of lululab was back at CES 2020 to talk about the latest developments in their intelligent skincare analysis products. When we first spoke with the Korean company at CES 2019, they were debuting LUMINI, a facial skincare system utilizing artificial intelligence via a handheld scanner to detect and make recommendations for treating different types of skin conditions.

The LUMINI is a professional level device intended for use by dermatologists, med spas, salons, and high-end department stores, but the company was already planning a more consumer-friendly version. This year, that's just what they have: a smart mirror called LUMINI Home, bringing some of the professional-level skincare analysis in the LUMINI scanner to the home consumer. The mirror solves the challenges of the small scanning device and sophisticated level of knowledge required to use it, by incorporating the technology of the scanner into a more familiar and easily usable mirror.

The mirror works along the same lines as the scanner. It captures an image of the user's face, then analyzes the facial conditions across six categories. It looks at wrinkles, pigment, redness, oiliness, pore conditions and acne, and then provides a recommended course of treatment for current conditions.

The smart mirror can be placed on a table or counter to work as a regular mirror, but utilizes some IoT and artificial intelligence capabilities for an additional level of interaction with the user. The mirror can greet the user, share basic daily information on weather conditions, including UV index and humidity, and then makes skincare recommendations based on those conditions, like advising the use of sunscreen or moisturizers. It will also recommend particular product lines.

The mirror will be available in the summer of 2020, first in Korea before being released worldwide. You can learn more on the company's website. The company was a CES 2020 Innovation Awards Nominee.

Interview by Marlo Anderson of The Tech Ranch and Daniele Mendez of The New Product Launchpad.

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Cambridge Consultants is designing a hospital of the future @ CES 2020

2020-03-28

Obviously, the majority of the companies we have on the show are either product companies or research and development firms. One exhibitor type that we don't often get to talk with is consultancies. These companies are often integral to the process of bringing a new product to the market. They can help with early-stage design, funding, marketing, and more. This year, we got the opportunity to speak with Jaquie Finn from Cambridge Consultants about the company's work in the industry.

Consultancies like Cambridge Consultants are the unsung heroes of the product world, often living behind the scenes, creating products for others, or spinning off divisions as they are created. While you may never hear their name, you might very well know their products. In the case of Cambridge Consultants, they have been involved in products ranging from the first wireless pacemaker to the Bluetooth stack in most devices, which became part of Qualcomm, from air traffic control systems to the push-to-talk satellite technology for Iridium, they've done it all.

At CES this year, the company was talking about the evolution of personal sensor technology. Today, most monitoring is done with wearable technologies - from smartwatches to headbands. But, wearable technologies have limitations that prevent proper compliance. There are gaps in the data because of device charging or swapping of hardware. There are communication glitches because of interference and middle technologies, like phones. And, there are inconsistencies between brands and models.

In a design for a hospital of the future, Cambridge Consultants ran a three-month test of a contactless monitoring solution aimed at helping to eliminate some of these issues. The test got data on heart rate, temperature, respiration, and consciousness simply through cameras, with no need for wearable technologies. In a hospital, this would make monitoring easier, with no wearables to clean, no batteries to charge. Nurses could focus on the results as opposed to the technology.

For more information about the projects that Cambridge has done, check out the company's website.

Interview by Marlo Anderson of The Tech Ranch and Daniele Mendez of The New Product Launchpad.

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Tapplock takes a different approach to biometric locks @ CES 2020

2020-03-29

Biometric padlocks have become a popular product category since one brand appeared on Shark Tank. While many companies have done nothing to innovate in the space, the team at Tapplock has found a way to set themselves apart in an increasingly crowded field. Their approach is to focus not just on the individual, but on the enterprise.

Using the company's enterprise software, a company can manage a fleet of padlocks and users. First, the lock is enrolled in the system so that the account can manage the device. This is no different from the normal individual signup process, where you pair the lock to your account. However, enrollment of a user is unique, as it doesn't take place on the lock, but on a more centralized reader. Once the user is enrolled in the system, they can be assigned to any or all of the locks in the collection.

Take, for example, Best Buy - a retailer that has dozens of secure displays throughout the store, as well as a large number of employees. By using the Tapplock enterprise system, the store can easily manage which employees have access to each locked case and, more importantly, when. Steve, who works in housewares, would likely not have access to unlock the case holding laptops, and the system can enforce that. Diane, who works in electronics, does have the ability to unlock the laptops to be able to help her customers. However, she should not have access to the case after 10 pm when the store closes. All of this is possible using the Tapplock enterprise platform.

One feature is missing from the Tapplock padlocks - support for a physical key. The company says that they did this to prevent an obvious point of physical attack, but many prefer to have the traditional key as a backup for when the battery dies and you need immediate access. This is an important piece of information to know before making a buying decision.

The Tapplock products are available ranging from $39 to $99. To find out more about the company, check out their website.

Interview by Marlo Anderson of The Tech Ranch and Daniele Mendez of The New Product Launchpad.

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Dell is bringing beautiful design to the workplace @ CES 2020

2020-03-29

When it comes to computers, there are few brands in the same realm as Dell. The company's XPS 13 laptop is one of the top choices for small form laptops by Laptop Magazine and Tom's Hardware. Avram Piltch even featured the newest model on a recent episode of the Piltch Point, in which he showed off the improved design.

At CES this year, the company showed off a lot of new devices, including the Latitude 9510. This sleekly designed laptop has the styling of a consumer device but is intended for the business world. That was part of the company's focus for the show this year - the marriage of business-class capabilities with consumer class styling. This move is important for companies who are trying to attract younger workers, who are used to attractive and high-end technology in their daily lives, and they don't want to sacrifice any of that in their business lives. It features a touch screen with stylus support, as well as a 180-degree rotatable screen, turning it into a tablet.

While the design is important, specs can be king, and this laptop has impressive specs. The Latitude 9510 sports over 30 hours of battery life, meaning you can literally use it all day without fear. It also has 4G and 5G connectivity, in addition to Wi-Fi, so you should be able to use it anywhere you are. They even worked to ensure that the teleconferencing capabilities are enterprise-grade. A few weeks ago, this might have been an important feature, but right now it is essential, with so many people working from home.

They manage to pack all of this into the lightest 15-inch laptop, weighing in at only 3.2 pounds. The Latitude 9510 is coming soon. For more information on this and all of Dell's other laptops, check out their website.

Interview by Marlo Anderson of The Tech Ranch and Daniele Mendez of The New Product Launchpad.

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Giftapart takes the stress out of group gift giving @ CES 2020

2020-03-29

Everyone has been in a situation where you're having trouble coming up with a gift you want to get for a friend or family member. Some people have a smaller number of interests, and the things they want are more expensive. Being able to shop together with others, and each person purchase contribute part of the gift, has never been particularly easy. Fortunately, there is a new platform call Giftapart, which is aimed at making that experience pleasant.

Imagine your niece, Christina, is graduating from high school and headed off to college. She is likely to need a laptop, but no individual family member is able to pay for the device. What she can do is go onto Giftapart and register for the device that she really wants. Then, family and friends can go to her registry and contribute to the purchase. When the laptop is fully funded, Christina gets the laptop, and everyone gets credit for their part.

For anyone who has ever been the one to foot the bill for a group gift and never been paid back, this service is aimed at you. No longer does one person have to pay for the whole thing and hope that everyone else pays their share. Instead, all of the money is held individually until the purchase is ready to be made.

This is a perfect option for not only graduates but wedding registries, housewarming gifts, and more. Now people can register for the items they really want, regardless of the overall price. The platform currently offers over 25 million products, ranging from a Kitchenaid stand mixer to a Microsoft Surface Book, and everything in between. If there is an item you want to register for, it is probably available on the platform.

For more information on the Giftapart platform, check out their corporate website.

Interview by Marlo Anderson of The Tech Ranch and Daniele Mendez of The New Product Launchpad.

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MicroVision has a touching new prototype projector @ CES 2020

2020-03-31

Over the past few years, the cost of projection technology has come down significantly. That has been paired with the size of the technology getting smaller. On Black Friday 2019, we saw pico projectors being offered for less than $100. However, these devices don't provide a lot of value for most consumers. That's because the way we interact with our computing technology has changed, as well.

Most people expect the screens in their life to be touch. Nearly all laptops, definitely all phones and tablets, and even a lot of desktop (all-in-one) computers offer touch input. Projection screens, however, still require external input - that is until now. MicroVision has developed the Interactive Projection Engine - a very small hardware array that allows developers to produce devices with touch-enabled projection.

The demo device we got to see allowed for nearly any standard video input and computing output to connect to a device. We saw the projector connected to a phone with impressive touch recognition capabilities. But, the possibilities are endless, especially when connected to a computer. Even in our portable broadcast studio, this projector would make traveling easier, because it would eliminate the need for monitors.

Imagine being a business traveler, maybe you're a salesperson. You don't know what your client might have in a conference room. You don't want to pack a full projector, but the pico projectors tend to be too dim. This technology, however, is laser-powered, making it possible to use it in standard lighting. We even saw it on our wall in the studio with our lighting and the light of the convention center.

The demo device is available for developers through an application. The company is working with manufacturers to produce commercial products based on the technology. For more information, check out the company's website.

Interview by Don Baine, The Gadget Professor.

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Manta5 hydrofoil bikes allow you to ride on the water @ CES 2020

2020-03-31

In the past few years, the popularity of bicycles has grown quickly. We've seen new styles of bikes, including electric and hybrid bikes. However, there is one common thread that ties them all together - the surface on which you ride. That is not a limiting factor for the hydrofoil bikes made by Manta5, though, as their bikes are designed to be ridden on the water.

If that sentence surprised you, you are not alone. Even our host Don Baine was surprised when he was told. When you think about it, though, the concept starts to make more sense. Kayaking has also grown in popularity over the past few years, for a variety of reasons. One of the main reasons is the ability to go to places and see aspects of nature that you might normally miss. The Manta5 hydrofoil bikes allow for the same opportunities for exploration and beautiful views, but with a different workout. While a kayak will give your arms a workout, the hydrofoil bikes will give your legs a workout.

These hydrofoil bikes don't look like a traditional bicycle. When in the water, they look similar to a stationary bike, with the pedals attached to a solid center section. It also doesn't have wheels, as they wouldn't help a lot in the water. Instead, when you take it out of the water, you can see that it has a propeller on the back above a tail fin. In the front are another fin and a leveling bar. While this may seem like a small detail, it is important to note that the bike also sits upright when out of the water, making it easy to store and transport.

The Manta5 hydrofoil bikes are available for pre-order now, with a retail price of $7,490. You can pre-order yours and learn more about the product on their website.

Interview by Don Baine, The Gadget Professor.

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TROVA protects your privacy with a beautiful lockbox @ CES 2020

2020-03-31

These days, privacy and security are an important topic. Whether you're trying to keep your phone physically secured, or hiding away a flash drive, there are few ways to do it while maintaining an appealing visual. Safes and lockboxes tend to be functional without any regard to the look and feel of the products. But, we still want our homes and offices to look good, and not like the center of a bank. This is where TROVA comes in.

The company's products are designed to not only protect valuables and important items from prying eyes, but they do it while looking good. The boxes have a nice diamond cut to them, with a small peak on the top. Having the box look attractive is more than just a feature of aesthetics, though. It also means that it can disguise itself as a decorative item, allowing you to hide important items in plain sight. Unless someone is aware of the TROVA products, they would likely look right past it on a table, dresser, or desk.

Discretion is not its only security feature, though. These boxes are secured lockboxes, protected thorough biometrics and paired Bluetooth. You must have the correct, paired device in your possession to begin the process of unlocking the TROVA boxes. You must also use the app and your device's built-in biometrics to verify your identity before it will open up.

With the TROVA GO, you can even take the privacy and protection with you. This is a great option for travelers who want to keep their medications and other private items protected while going through security, the airport in general, and in a hotel or rental property.

The TROVA GO is available now for $249, and the TROVA HOME is available for pre-order at $699. You can learn more and purchase your device at the TROVA website.

Interview by Don Baine, The Gadget Professor.

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