Samsung Modular TV
This has got to be the coolest thing I’ve seen coming out of CES this year. Many TV makers are going the route of “HDR” (High Dynamic Range) in order to get consumers back into the TV aisles of electronic stores. HDR is basically your OLED screens or other technology with deep blacks and great contrast in colors. Many makers will market it as “Super HD.” They look great, but to me it’s whatever. As a gamer it is a bigger “whatever” because games currently struggle to even hit 1080 on consoles, and PC players already have monitors with better visuals.
So what makes Samsung Modular TV so much better? This isn’t about visuals, this is about the actual “TV” they brought to the show. On display was a 170 inch “TV,” but it is made up of smaller squares. Each square can connect to other squares to make a bigger TV, a different aspect ratio, or simply cool designs. Samsung had the blocks moving on display to create new things, but as consumers you can adjust it as you grow. Perhaps you only have enough money for so many blocks now, but keep adding to it. You can also adjust the blocks so that you no longer have a letter box on certain things. You can only imagine the possibilities of technology like this for gaming, and who knows maybe one day it’ll advance to curve outwards and really put you into the game. No VR headset needed!
Sony Short Throw Projectors
Sony had revealed a lineup of short throw projectors for a few years now, but they are really getting good at it. They revealed a short throw projector bar this year that outputs in 4k and also has motion controls and doubles a speaker. The bar sits up against a wall (instead of across a room) and projects up onto the wall. Everything seems to auto adjust so nothing gets distorted and lighting doesn’t hurt it too much.
Now Sony has taken it a step further and introduced a short throw portable projector. The thing is the same size as a box of tissues and also doubles as a speaker. It is set to project screens in 23 inches, but it is noted to go larger as well. How much? Well we don’t know since actual specs are not being revealed yet. The device also has an HDMI port so you can take gaming with you anywhere you want. Want to project it on a wall in a hotel? Cool. Want to project it on the ground while sitting in line for a new game? That’s cool too. The device is meant to be portable and to be taken wherever you want. Granted this is tech from Sony and anything they reveal at CES is never cost effective, so don’t get too excited unless you have a fat wallet.
One thing that all gamers can agree on is that we all hate lag! Almost every gamer has gone through router settings or internet settings and spent a good amount of time configuring everything for optimal settings. Then we get annoyed when something interferes with it, or we need to open new ports etc…
Portal’s new router hopes to change things entirely with a new router that is set to be optimal at all times. The company promises that the new router can utilize up to 250% more of the 5ghz spectrum than other routers, but that is not all. The router is also programmed to constantly search for optimal settings and looks for any possible interference or issues with devices. Once it finds any possible interference, it will automatically adjust itself to ensure optimal data transfer.
Duh, Virtual Reality!
I didn’t really want to put VR in this list because it’s pretty common sense that it is coming and gamers are at the forefront of that excitement. Yet it seems VR is so widespread at CES this year that it’s hard not to talk about it. Oculus, Samsung, Sony, HTC, Google, and plenty of other companies had some sort of VR headset to show off with unique features to their specific gadget. (I’ve said it before and I still think AR like Microsoft HoloLens is more fascinating.)
That being said they did have some cool stuff to show off. Samsung once again led the way with a new gadget to go with VR called Samsung Rink. The device is basically two controllers for your hands that sense all the movement you make with them. Samsung had a demo on display during CES to show some possibilities, but what could come of it is what is so fascinating.
The bad news is that Oculus was the first, and as of writing this, the only one to really reveal a price point. The other being Google Cardboard, which basically just slides your smart phone into it, is coming in at $25 and other smartphone related headgear is also being priced. Yet the true VR headsets are not revealing too much and many analysts are predicting most will follow the $600 price point of Oculus, a very scary number for something that could fade rather easily.
What about all the non-gaming stuff?
There was some cool non-gaming related tech, but we will just go over some cool things rather quickly.
Samsung’s New Fridge – Samsung revealed a new fridge that tracks all kinds of stuff including who opens it and what is within the fridge. It also has camera that scan the fridge and can send images to your phone, or display on the screen, so you don’t need to stand with the door open. (It also helps restock it.) The fridge also has some health benefits too, but it does come with a hefty price.
HumanEyes Vues – A 360 degree camera that comes in under $1000, but has good quality. With VR taking off this becomes all the more important.
Hyundai AR Manual – I found this rather neat personally, the new gadget is an AR app for smartphones that allows you to virtually see things from the manual by holding up the camera to different parts of the car. It can highlight things and give proper information as needed.