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Our top takeaways from CES 2024

Written by Joe Bonney, Head of Strategy

I was just one of 130,000 enthusiastic new-tech hunters who attended CES last week, and what a whirlwind of a week it was!

Clocking over 20,000 steps a day (and smiling through more networking events than I thought was humanly possible), CES is an incredibly unique, eye-opening, meaningful and worthwhile experience to attend.

I split my time between meeting with existing and potential partners, attending networking events and walking the show floor. Now I’m not going to digress the outcomes of every conversation I had but, because you’ve asked nicely, here are some of my top takeaways from my time exploring the show floor.

Something that I want tomorrow

Whilst there were a lot of interesting automotive reveals, one that I particularly liked was Hyundai’s new EV concept, MOBION, which makes use of advanced robotics technology to introduce their ‘e-corner system’ – basically a snazzy way to say all four wheels can turn independently.

Having wheels that can turn independently introduces the ability to drive sideways, diagonally, make sharper turns around corners and even to perfectly spin in a circle. There’s also some extremely smart exterior lighting where we would usually see bumpers, that can be used to alert other drivers of situations in-front and behind, as well as 360-degree ground projection lighting that shows the car’s intended turn direction, amongst other things.

Whilst only a concept car, the practical and safety benefits of owning a vehicle that can crab-walk its way into a parallel park or rotate on the spot are huge, and surely something we’ll see introduced to the wider market soon.

You can see the concept car in action here.

Something so simple yet so smart

Arguably one of the most talked about launches online from CES was Rabbit AI’s new R1 ‘Pocket Companion’. It’s unsurprising that AI was at the forefront of the event, but this launch got people discussing new types of AI usage that perhaps we didn’t even know we need.

This Pokédex-looking device is designed to carry out your requests, sometimes going through multiple or complex steps, such as booking flights, building playlists, ordering pizza or even editing images.

With one simple press-to-talk button (alongside a scroll wheel and camera), you issue commands in natural language by simply talking to the device, which then interacts with the apps on your smartphone on your behalf.

With its own AI-driven interface and unique hardware, the R1 eliminates the need for direct individual app usage and, perhaps what’s most appealing, is the fact that this offer to simplify user interactions retails at only $199/£149!

You can read more about the new R1 from Rabbit AI here.

Image credit: Rabbit AI

Something that blew me away

Sometimes I feel that televisions can be a bit unsightly, and whilst some manufacturers have already made steps to improve this, like Samsung’s Frame TV, with its customisable bezels and rotating gallery of art masterpieces bringing a little bit of the Louvre into your living room, it still feels gimmicky, like the short lived curved TV fad.

But LG’s unveiling at CES has taken things even further with their transparent OLED TV.
Thanks to its transparency, this TV doesn’t need to be placed against the wall, instead allowing it to be used as a subtle room divider, or even positioned against a window without compromising its view.

Image credit: LG

It’s also got a tonne of smart features, the primary one being that it’s wireless, with the accompanying LG Zero Connect Box transmitting 4K images to the TV without the need for it to be plugged in.

Whether or not we need transparent TV technology in our homes is a separate question altogether, but seeing this alongside Samsung’s Transparent Micro LED concept really was impressive in-person and I can see this truly changing out-of-home advertising.

See the transparent TV in action here.

 

Most Impressive Stand

The must-see stand of 2024 was without a doubt SK’s Wonderland. An amusement park like no other, the huge booth included a fast-charging dancing electric car, a clean energy train, and even a fortune teller and magic carpet (both powered by AI of course).

Sustainability is the thread weaving the Wonderland together, as SK shows how renewable and green energy can be used to make the world a better place. And if you needed a reminder that the show was taking place in Las Vegas, they’ve even included a mini version of the sphere for CES attendees to enjoy.

You can see a tour of the stand here.

Image credit: skinnonews.com

Perhaps the most unnecessary tech addition?!

Micro-Mobility was a big part of CES and it’s really quite exciting to see where we’re heading as we step-away from traditional transportation methods.  However for every positive progression, such as self-stabilising e-bikes from Weel that lower human error and increase safety, there’s also some unnecessary additions, such as this e-bike that has ChatGPT built into it. Whilst you can try your hardest to convince me that it’s a worthwhile addition, helping to keep you company and provide sightseeing tips, it just feels like it’s a meshing together of two technologies because…..why not?!

Retailing at between £4.5-5.5k….. I think I’ll stick to walking with a podcast on thanks!

 

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