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The press got the first peak at all the cool new gadgets at the opening reception for the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas on Tuesday. There were more than 60 vendors showing off their wares to hundreds of press in a carnival-like setting. We took plenty of pictures and here are our picks for some of the coolest new offerings at the event.
For openers, the gadget pictured at top, Dexim‘s Visible G Charger, reflects the emphasis on greener technologies. It lets users save power when charging an Apple iOS (iPod or iPhone) product because you can see from the color of the wire whether a device needs charging or not. Just by glancing at the wire, you can tell that the one on the right is almost done charging. The charger will also automatically shut off an outlet to stop it from unnecessarily sending current into a fully charged device. Dexim’s web site will have details on availability soon.
WowWee showed off Cinemin Slice, a portable pico-power projector. Using Texas Instruments’ digital light processing chips (which have lots of little mirrors that reflect light as needed), WowWee created a projector that can take a WVGA image (854 x 480 pixels, a decent-sized image but not high-definition) from an iPod, iPad, or iPhone and project it onto a wall. The $429 device is available for pre-order now.
3M showed off the latest fast-response touchscreens that it manufactures and then combines with touchscreen software from Perceptive Pixels. The 23-inch projected capacitive touchscreen pictured above can handle more than 10 finger touches at a time. Even with that many touches on the screen, the response time for each finger is under 6 milliseconds, which is an instant. That makes it one of the most accurate and robust solutions on the market. Lots of other touchscreens are slow in response times.
Withings showed off a connected blood pressure monitor, pictured above. It can connect wirelessly with your iPhone or iPad and show you the exact reading for your blood pressure. It captures your pulse and then stores the data. You can look at the data over time to figure out if you’ve got a health problem or not.
Powered by chips from Cavium Networks, Actiontec showed off its wireless replacement for a high-definition multimedia cable. You can plug a PlayStation 3 into the Actiontec device, which uses the WiVu technology from Cavium, and then project the images wirelessly to a TV or computer screen somewhere in your home via ordinary Wi-Fi connections. The response time is about 20 milliseconds, making it good for gaming and video applications.
Seeker Technology showed off its pipSqueak Bluetooth device that helps eliminate common complaints about cell phones. It clips on to your clothing or can be carried in a pocket. When you get a call, you can glance at the display and see if you want to answer it. Or, you can initiate a message to the caller that you are trying to answer but have to take longer to answer the phone than usual. That way, you don’t miss calls that you want and you don’t answer calls that you don’t want. This is especially useful for women who keep their phones in their purses.
OK, we cheated with this last picture. It’s a shot of Toshiba’s latest concept prototype for a tablet computer. Toshiba wasn’t at the opening reception but it did show off its gear at a party at the glitzy Tao nightclub at the Venetian. The screen uses a resolution-enhancing technology that Toshiba also uses in its TVs, making for a crystal clear image.