This year there has been no shortage of new products at CES 2015. The biggest trends included enhanced home viewing with higher 4K TV resolution, more virtual reality headsets beyond Oculus Rift and increased connectivity to everything you own.
Among the wearables and speakers, this innovative and futuristic event also had its share of incredibly weird gadgetry. Throughout this week, I have been on a mission to identify the best new tech on display and the weird and wonderful showing in Las Vegas this past week. From 3D printed bras to smart belts and a high-tech speakers system, which combines high sound quality and refrigeration— I found some crazy, awesome and weird tech.
Love 'em or hate 'em, here ten of the stranger gadgetry at CES and and a second page full of equally ridiculous photos.
1. LG G Flex 2
No, your computer-screen-weary eyes don't deceive you. LG brought the curved smartphone back to CES with a follow-up to the original LG G Flex, and stands a chance this time around. The new LG G Flex 2 has a more manageable 5.5-inch screen and higher resolution full HD resolution that easily fits into the palm of your hand thanks to its bent design.
The flexible plastic display makes it harder to crack and the advanced self-healing back removes scratches even faster right before your eyes. Whether or not the banana-shaped display leads to a more immersive viewing experience is still up for debate. But it's weird, whacky and only at CES until later this year.
2. Panasonic smart mirror
Mirror, mirror on the wall, is the The Internet of Things destined to ultimately make everyone feel inadequate and ball? If you ever thought you needed a smart mirror that tells you how ugly you are, great—we found one at CES!
Panasonic introduced a mirror that 'helpfully" points out all your flaws for you—think wrinkles, dryness and pores. Then the smart mirror advises you as to what products you can purchase to "fix" them. Oh and men can use this mirror as well – try on new make-up, or see how you would look with a mustache.
3. Chromat 3D - printed bra
Crazy, techie, cool? This 3D printed bra was not on the CES show floor, instead it was on display at fashion website Refinery29's tricked out millennial woman's dream apartment at the Wynn. The bra and other wearable endoskeletons were showcased on racks, (sadly not humans) with talk of the new age women wearing tech from the inside out. I have a feeling 3D printing will really impact our world more than the internet.
At long last, someone made a self-adjusting "smart" belt. This smart belt will loosen itself if you eat too much and promises to make weight loss a cinch. Well I don't know about the latter, but this smart belt sounds like the opposite of what I want wearable tech to do.
Belty wirelessly connects with the user's smartphone and with its embedded sensors, the belt will vibrate when it determines you have eaten too much, and also sends a signal when you are sedentary for too long. The Belty will automatically loosen when you sit down, and tighten when you stand up, for example.
The French company called Emiota, which is behind the smart belt, hasn't yet shared a release date or pricing information, but aims to launch sometime this year.
These aren't your mama's rollerskates. And actually, these aren't rollerskates at all-- they're rollers meant to help you walk "twice as fast" (as fast as 7 mph). Once the "electronic under shoes" are strapped on, the user can zip around town.
While they may be ideal for the chronically late person, the downside is that you will have to carry the electronic skates around when they are not in use.
Meet Beam, a remotely controlled communication robot, aka a smart presence device from Suitable Tech. The robots, which are controlled remotely, consist of a large screen mounted on a mobile base. We first saw one of these robots attending Comic-Con last year, but now they have multiplied.
Creepy, but cool there were a couple dozen of these rolling chat bots as its pitchmen at the bustling convention, reveling from afar. I had a ten minute conversation, with an employee working from home via the "telepresence robot."
7. Tao Chair
How many times have you skipped the gym because you wanted to go home and sit? Well, with the Tao Chair, the gym is literally hiding in this chair, with fitness sensors running through its veins. Yep, it looks like a normal piece of furniture but instead it lets you sit back, put the TV on, and start to work your muscles. (Hence its slogan, 'the invisible gym in your living room').
The chair's arms resist when you push in different directions, allowing you to work out while embedded sensors track how many calories you're burning. With enough force, you can do curls, presses, and leg lifts, all depending on where you put your arms and legs. It's still at the prototype stage so far but who knows, in a decade, every home could have one.
8. Sony Walkman
AHH, the rebirth of Sony's flagship music player, the Walkman. Let's just say, this has not been the best and brightest year for Sony. While the device is getting a modern makeover after 35 years, it's no longer the low-cost music player of the past. The new 128 GB Walkman comes with a $1,119.99 (about £791, AU$1,475) price tag.
Who would drop $1,200 on a music player? We're still waiting to find out.
9. Melo Mind
Unlike most wearables that keep you active, Melo Mind is a brain-scanning wearable tech that helps you keep calm and relax. The white headset that looks something like a broken egg shell, reads neural activity and attempts to translate it in the language of music.
The brain's waves are transmitted via Bluetooth to a connected app, which computes your level of stress and translates it into two kinds of music the company calls, Relaxed and Distractor.
There's plenty of outside-of-the-box tech on display at CES 2015 and this is one such example - although the Kube is very much in the box. This high-tech speaker system combines high sound quality and... you guessed it, refrigeration.
The portable Bluetooth speaker element can pump out 100db of sound thanks to speakers at either end. And it's happy doing so while full of ice and beer. The entire box is 23 x 13 inches and weighs around 9kg. The Kube is due on sale this summer and comes with a price tag of US $1099 (about £725, AU$1,350).
- Be sure to see the second page for an even bigger photo gallery of weird CES 2015 tech.