A walk around Eureka Park at CES will always lead you to something new and exciting that will make you literally want to put your hands on it. Modular Robotics was no exception, as their namesake product allowed us to do just that. The company has created a line of blocks that all have little computer chips inside them that allow them to act and react to each other. Using blocks such as sensors, rollers, blinking lights, motors and more, you can build any type of creation you want, and then even program the blocks yourself to do things you want it to do. These cool gadgets are for ages 6-60 and are a great stocking stuffer or birthday present for anyone, young or old. You’ll want to see what we created in the video.
Meet Luci. She’s an inflatable, portable, extremely lightweight, life-saving solar-powered LED lantern. Why life-saving? Well, for starters, for every lantern we purchase here, one Luci will be donated to a developing country to literally give them light. Founder and CEO of MPOWERED, Jacques-Philippe Piverger, talks about Luci and how she proved to be an effective tool not only during the power outages in NYC but even in developing countries that usually depend on dirty and costly fuel for energy. Luci has been such a success, in fact, that she’s reached the top spot in Amazon’s outdoor and camping category, after just only two months of being on shelves. It was really a pleasure talking to Jacques-Philippe as you could really feel the passion for his product and for the cause during the interview. It’s one of the many great things about Eureka Park at CES.
Just announced as Monster’s latest brand ambassador, business mogul and world-famous hip-hop mogul, Swizz Beatz, was in attendance this year at the Monster booth. He will also be signing onto the executive board as he’s purchased a co-ownership stake in the company. In this exclusive interview, we touch upon the deal with Monster, what he plans to bring to the table and more. Swizz also goes into detail about what’s in store for him moving forward and how he’s happy representing the Monster brand. Ironically, Swizz also created Monster Music Group a few years ago, featuring up-and-coming hip hop talent.
Something really is accidentally extraordinary about some of the products and companies we see at Eureka Park at CES. Accidentally Extraordinary is one of those companies. The made-in-Oakland, touch-controlled headphones were one of the truly new ideas found at this year’s largest innovation event and they definitely turned some heads. The concept is simple: take your headphone cable and make it touch sensitive like everything else you own now. Swipe for volume up and down, tap to take calls and more on these extremely flexible and lightweight earbuds. And while the gadget was only a mockup, you could really tell something good could come from this idea, so long as it’s executed properly. Their web site right now is simply a call to investors, but if you categorize yourself as such, be sure to help these guys out. We love the concept.
The Zboard, another Eureka Park work of art, is made by Intuitive Motion and is a new, fun way to travel. It’s a skateboard that is powered by a motor, but more importantly, is controlled by your feet. Simply lean on the front foot pad to accelerate and the back foot pad to brake, and how fast or slow you go is all dependant by how hard you press on the pads. The idea for Zboard came to the team while they were brainstorming for their senior project for the University of Southern California. One of the co-founders said he was tired of having bikes being stolen and was over having to push a skateboard around the hills and annoyingly uneven streets of Los Angeles. The Zboard is like a skateboard, except it’s faster and easier to ride, and it’s much more portable than a bicycle. You can reach speeds of up to 17MPH but when you ride it, it makes you feel like The Flash.
Visiting the Freer Logic booth at Eureka park led us to discover a product called Body Wave, which allows you to increase your mental capacity, physical performance or even control objects around you, all by using your mind. While this may sound a little far-fetched, it actually worked, all from a device that we wore on our wrist that was slightly larger than an MP3 player. There are three sensors that are on the back of the Body Wave that touch your skin and begin looking for brainwave activity and patterns, which are then sent via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi to a computer or mobile device. In our scenario, we were told to focus specifically on the object in front of us, the dolphin. Then, once Nick’s brain was in its focused, calm state (which is difficult for him), the dolphin would move to the bottom of the ocean. When he would get distracted from Allante poking at him, the dolphin would lift. It’s definitely something you have to see and/or try to believe, but we’re pretty skeptical about things like this and it actually works. Freer Logic says that Body Wave would expand in the future to be able to allow you to control things like turning on your cell phone or other home electronics with just your mind, and they also said the device would get a lot smaller before it becomes a mainstream product.
At Eureka Park we saw a really cool product from Viotech Communications, which allows a user to access all of their content, from any device, from anywhere there is an Internet connection. The service, called my eHome, is a set-top box type of solution (the box is called “HomeB”), which lets you, as Viotech says, multi-play your home. Essentially, it’s one unique way to use multiple screens, with multiple types of content, from multiple services, with multiple users, from multiple locations. Viotech created eHome because they understood that each user who is in a household likes to view their own content in their own way, and there was no service that currently allowed each individual to do just that, as well as maintain control of their own content without letting others see their own personal files. That’s only the tip of the iceberg though, as there are a ton of different features and capabilities to make this suit practically anyone’s home and needs.
Visiting the Thinkware booth allowed us to discover an in-car DVR system, useful for capturing the moments of an unfortunate accident or for sight-seeing. Thinkware’s FXD-700 is a front device recorder that picks up images, speed and time and starts recording as soon as you start the car, with help of a motion sensor. All of it then saves to an SD card, in a format which can be used on all computers, and will continuously record for up to 8 hours, unless you would like to expand up to 32GB. The full 1080p HD camera sensor is also impressive, allowing up to 140 degrees of viewing and the rear-camera (which is optional) gives you 120 degrees. Thinkware also said that the device is simply powered off of the car battery, which gives you the ability to record while the car is off, in surveillance mode, and will shut off if the device is draining the battery. The product isn’t available in the US yet but Thinkware is looking to make that happen within a few months.
Delphi is currently working on a technology that will get rid of cords and clutter that exist in most vehicles on the roads today. How? Delphi’s Wireless Charging for consumer devices will be able to power all of your mobile electronic devices for you, without the need for plugs, adapters or cords. This allows not only a cleaner car, but a much safer car. We’ve seen wireless charging before, with standards such as Qi with Fulton Innovations, and Delphi is looking to improve upon the wireless charging distance that currently exists in some devices, in order to make almost the entire car a charging port. The best part is that Delphi’s Wireless Charging uses no cables or pads you need to stick onto a device and the charging rate is almost the same as what you get with a cord stuck into the wall at your house. The system will automatically engage once a device is in range so you never have to worry about telling the car when to charge your gadgets on the go.
i-Mego is a CES 2013 Innovations Awards winner who specializes in really high quality headphones that don’t break the bank. Their over-the-ear Throne have two models that are specifically tuned for different types of soundstages, or what you’re listening to. They also sport a classic 50’s style look which are sure to make audiophiles everywhere happy. Getting into the Innovations Awards winner, i-Mego has created the Stone earbuds, which are kind of like an on-stage in-ear monitor but has four different shapes that fit almost anyone’s ear. This is much less expensive than shelling out $1,000 for custom in-ear monitors that have taken over the industry. i-Mego’s Throne and Stone prices are also sure to surprise you, given the quality and clarity of sound that they produce.