The following is a guest post from momAgendaCOMM blogger Leticia Barr.
Every year at the beginning of January, the latest tech products are announced and exhibited at the Consumer Electronics Showcase (CES). With 3,200 exhibitors showcasing items to over 150,000 attendees it’s the place to get a sense of the products coming to market later this year but also prototypes that are being considered for future development.
Here’s a look at the top five trends spotted at CES:
In 2013, we saw wearable devices emerge as FitBit, Jawbone’s Up, Nike FuelBand, and other fitness products aimed to count our steps to make us healthier but expect to see the wearable market explode in 2014. There are new fitness wearables designed by leaders in the industry such as Garmin (Garmin VivoFit) and Polar (Polar Loop). New products like Basis are coming to market designed to help us manage our lifestyles all in the name of health. Tech titans like Sony will release the third version of their SmartWatch and Samsung is rumored to release the second version of the Gear. There’s also wearable tech for pets! One company to watch is Voyce, whose dog collar is engineered to help owners bridge the communication gap with their dog for improved health and wellbeing.
Devices that Multitask
Gone are the days when your devices just did one thing. OlloClip transforms your iPhone into an incredibly powerful and versatile camera thanks to their new 4 in 1 iPhone lens system that puts the power of a fisheye, wide angle, 10x macro, and 15x macro in your pocket. The popular Samsung Galaxy Camera’s successor was announced and the Samsung Galaxy 2 Camera has a design that will feel familiar to smartphone users and features high tech like a Quad Core processor for speed plus the ability to shoot, edit, and share high quality images right from the camera. Samsung’s newest tablet, the Galaxy Tab Pro, also allows users to run multiple applications right from the home screen while paging through content in a magazine format.
Smart home products allow you to monitor what’s going on in your home even when you’re not there. Alarm.com’s security service can include video hardware that can be pulled up via a smartphone app or the web client so you can live stream what’s happening in your home remotely. Goji unveiled their Smart Lock, a deadbolt featuring an embedded camera that snaps a photo of a family member, caregiver, or relative as they enter your home and sends you a text alert with their photo so you will always know who is entering your house and when. If you need gentle reminders, Mother by Sen.se comes with four small sensors called Cookies that can be attached to almost anything to detect and understand the movements of objects and people. Cookies can send you a smartphone notification when your baby’s room is too hot or cold, text you to let you know that you haven’t moved your water bottle to take a sip and stay hydrated, or even email or call you to remind you to take your daily vitamins.
Ultra High Definition Televisions
If you’ve been thinking of upgrading your television to a high definition one, skip right over the HD models and go to UHD, or ultra high definition. UHD TVs were all over the show floor at CES to display vivid colors thanks to the 4000 pixels (4K) per square inch that makes images on the screen pure eye candy. Samsung, Panasonic, LG, and Sony were among some of the companies showcasing 4K TVs at CES this year.
If you’ve ever been bothered by glare on your television screen, the new curved ultra high definition television is designed to eliminate glare from any viewing angle. Samsung and Panasonic had the most impressive displays of curved televisions on the CES floor.
There were certainly more than five standout tech trends from CES this year, but as with any trend, it’s always interesting to see which products will be the breakout successes once they come to market.
What tech trends do you think you might embrace in 2014?
Leticia is the founder of Tech Savvy Mama, a site that assists parents in navigating the ever-changing world of technology. She uses her experience as a former teacher and technology specialist for a large DC Metro area school system to share new technology and educational resources. Connect with Leticia on Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest.