Monday, January 14, 2013

2013 International CES Unveiled - A First Look at Some Cool & Innovative New Technologies


Having just returned from the 2013 International CES consumer electronics show -- the world's largest trade show in history -- in Las Vegas, I can assure you that navigating this mega event is a lot like venturing into the wilds of a jungle in Costa Rica.

Jungle near Monte Verde, Costa Rica
As I walked the show I didn't encounter any Viper snakes or Howling Monkeys along the way like the ones you'd expect to find in a Central or South American rainforest. Still, it was just as challenging to cut through the crowds wherever I went to get where I wanted to go.

My full week of on-the-scene media coverage for MommyBlogExpert began with CES Unveiled, a press party held at the Mandalay Bay Hotel in the South Seas Ballroom. 

Media members as far as the eye can see line up for CES Unveiled '13 
By the time I reached the door I couldn't wait to see what was inside
The event gave the press a sneak peek at some of the exhibiting companies' products and services that were revealed to the masses on the multi-venue show floor two days later. But before I get into my favorite tech exhibitors that night, first take a look at some of the abundant colorful and extravagant food and drinks that were served. From elegant, artistically arranged crudités to Apple and Blue Raspberry Martinis springing forth from a huge ice sculpture to a seemingly endless tapestry of elegant desserts and much more, this special evening from 100% First Class.

All that gorgeous food really was just a prelude of what was to come. This media affair involving more than a thousand reporters, producers and analysts all vying for a first glimpse at 70+ companies' wares was a mob scene, for sure. Still, I managed to discover and photograph some really cool tech innovations to feature in this post.

Here I am with the "World's Largest Singing Toothbrush" that Brush Buddies debuted at their booth this year. The brand's line of singing toothbrushes now includes not only the best-selling Justin Bieber model but Lady Gaga, One Direction, LMFAO and PSY Gangnam Style -- who dethroned Bieber just a handful of months ago as the most-watched YouTube artist of all time. Brush Buddies says that when compared with manual toothbrushes, talking and singing toothbrushes make brushing fun and increase brushing time by 73%. For those not into singing or the particular artists currently available, a new line of Bling Toothbrushes is on its way, too, coming out later in the first quarter of 2013. 

I couldn't have been more thrilled to have been one of the lucky press corps members to receive one of approximately 100 FitBugs that were given away at this booth so I could join in the brand's CES Marathon Challenge.  I've owned pedometers before (by other manufacturers). This one is different because it is Bluetooth-enabled, automatically uploading walking data on the go via my iPhone. In fact, finding out that I walked 26.5 miles between Monday and Friday at the show has motivated me to continue using this fitness device to exercise more now that I'm home. And guess what? I'm actually wearing it right now!    

Meanwhile, Griffin Technology showed off their super cute and fun new kid-friendly KaZoo line of animal-inspired headphones, cases and accessories.  Top Picture: Several of their new colorful and durable silicone iPod Touch cases and coordinating Kazoo Charms Lanyard bling. Bottom Picture: Kazoo headphones, a SpongeBob pillow and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles iPad case.

Over at House of Marley, celebrity Rohan Marley, son of the late great reggae icon Bob Marley, was holding court. When I stopped by he was speaking passionately about -- what else but music and his namesake brand's in-ear, on-ear and over-ear headphones. If you ask me, Rohan is just as iconic as his father, definitely a chip off the old block.

When I visited the Trakdot booth I was surprised to learn that a whopping 26 million bags get lost during air travel annually. If you want to know your suitcase(s) whereabouts at all times while traveling, especially after being checked-in by your favorite airline, Trakdot Luggage by GlobaTrac might be worth checking into.

Think you're looking at a Microsoft Surface Tablet or just another ultra book? Think again and take a closer look. This is the new rip and flip ThinkPad Helix running Windows 8 that Lenovo was showing at CES Unveiled. Due out in February, this convertible yet powerful ultrabook will sell for $1,499. If early press reviews are any indication, the ThinkPad Helix appears poised to be a real hit with consumers when it is available next month.

Another cool discovery at the event was SpareOne which was honored with a CES 2013 Best of Innovations Award.  Here's an affordable phone that will be there ready to help you in an emergency and, according to its manufacturer, the only device of its kind in the world that is powered by a standard AA battery. Offering 10 hours of talk time off a single battery it has the added bonus of a mini torch light that stays lit for up to 24 hours. Amazingly, in its unused state it can hold a charge for up to 15 years. And the best part is that it is able to make one-button emergency phone calls without a SIM card.

A few other fascinating CES Unveiled finds...

At the Ion Audio Booth
At the iHome Booth
At the myCharge Booth
Watch for many more posts in the weeks and months ahead about CES 2013. Your roving reporter will be covering all manner of technology enhancing family life for moms, dads, kids and extended family members. 

FTC Disclosure: I attended 2013 International CES 2013 as a credentialed member of the press. No payment received for this post. See complete FTC Disclosure information that appears at the bottom of MommyBlogExpert's main page and at the bottom of every individual post on this blog, including this one.

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