Weekly Download 15.2Posted: January 26, 2015
The annual Consumer Electronics Show was held a couple of weeks ago. While individual gadgets are not top priority for me (lots of shine and sizzle, too little substance), I enjoy observing general trends. Two categories stood out, that I confirmed on a recent visit to Best Buy.
#1: The connected home. This includes everything from thermostats, smoke/CO detectors (Nest Protect has caught a friend’s attention), lights, access control, home monitoring and sound/video/entertainment systems.
#2: Home entertainment. There still seems to be a quest for “bigger is better.” Now, there are 4K screens and curved screens, all targeted toward creating an in-home experience for large groups of people. We have a traditional colonial-style house, with no oversized great room to hold a dozen or more viewing guests. Fortunately for us, it also seems like demand is growing for tools to promote “cocooning” in your own home.
- The Intel® Compute Stick is a complete system on an old school USB stick-sized device that can transform any HDMI display into a fully-functioning computer.
- The HP Sprout is a combo PC, scanner and projector with a touch-sensitive projection surface. It’s too soon to tell if it will become the next great thing in home computing.
Here are a couple of other observations:
- 3-D printing continues to evolve to include food, clothing, parts and even entire cars!
- Watches are hot again, particularly when loaded with fitness and wellness capabilities. I’m not sure what to think about this category—I thought we gave watches up long ago.
- WattUp™ is a potential game-changer in the way we keep our myriad devices charged by creating wire-free charging zones.