CES 2013


Cityline visits CES 2013!

The Consumer Electronics Show—more popularly known as CES—is where hundreds of thousands of technology enthusiasts, journalists, and gadget-makers gather to find out what’s trending in the upcoming year in the consumer electronics market, and I had the pleasure of visiting the five-day event in Las Vegas, NV, on Jan. 7 through Jan. 11, 2013.

Among the sea of people were the latest innovations in technology today, including the smartest of smart refrigerators, eco-friendly app-controlled thermostats, and larger-than-life television sets.

Over the next year, the Smart TV Alliance will be working towards creating a connected environment across all of its member television manufacturers, like this curved, OLED television from LG.  The end result will include thousands of applications from weather to news to games to social media—all from the comfort of your television’s remote control.

When it comes to being connected, gadget-makers are pushing even harder this year to keep you connected to the Internet all the time.  For example, the Samsung GALAXY Camera is connected to the cellular network, so no matter where you are, your photos can be uploaded to your favourite social networks from Facebook to Twitter—all without a Wi-Fi network, USB cable, or computer!

Here’s a look at what I found in connected technology for the home:

With parents constantly on the go and kids more digitally connected than ever before (be it at home or in the classroom), families are facing increased challenges to stay caught up with the latest technology. Apps, gadgets, and “smart” technology for the family are largely in focus CES this year.

Busy moms are in luck this year, too.  Baby monitors, like VTech’s Safe & Sound, will allow you to not only hear your baby, but now you can even see your baby from multiple camera angles on a 2.8-inch full-colour screen.  If you are looking for something to keep your child occupied, the MINDSTORM EV3 will bring your LEGO to life!

Check out my web-exclusive look at family gadgets here:

What are you most excited for in the world of technology in 2013? Share them in the comments below!

Camera by Alex Tutt.


CES 2013: Smart TV technology continues to take over Canadian living rooms

TheDigitalLife_Smart TV copySmart TVs are setting the trend at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, NV.

The Smart TV Alliance—a universal Smart TV platform consisting of manufacturers like LG, Panasonic, and Toshiba—unveiled a new set of applications aimed at unifying your television-viewing experience with the Internet.

Over the next year, the Smart TV Alliance will be working towards creating a connected environment across all of its member television manufacturers.  The end result will include thousands of applications from weather to news to games to social media—all from the comfort of your television’s remote control.

LG announced a new television experience for families in 2013, the features of which include:

  • 3D video
  • More and better content choices with updated digital rights management (DRM) features that reflect DRM requirements from content owners
  • Richer and increased number of applications available from upgraded HTML5, CSS3 and JavaScript specifications

The goal will see users able to load apps on one television, and when a second television is purchased down the road—even if it’s from a different manufacturer—they will be able to load the same apps and content from the Internet.

Does a connected, Smart TV in the living room appeal to you?  Sound off in the comments below.

With files from LG.


CES 2013: The 21st-century connected family

TheDigitalLife_VINCIWith moms constantly on the go and kids demanding more than ever online (be it at home or in the classroom), families are facing more of a challenge to stay caught up with living in a digital home.

Apps, gadgets, and “smart” technology for the family are largely in focus at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, NV, this year.

Baby wireless monitoring is a technology being elaborated on this year for new moms, with gadgets like the Vtech Safe & Sound being unveiled.  This state-of-the-art baby-monitoring device comes with a built in high-resolution digital camera, two-way intercom, and improved digital transmission so you get the clearest view and communication with your toddler.

More affordable tablet computers will be on market this year.  The VINCI is a tablet computer built just for children between the ages of one and nine.  The VINCI Tab MV is designed for young children, allowing kids to communicate, stay entertained, and play games appropriate for their age group.  The device runs on your home Wi-Fi network.

When it comes to simplifying your everyday tasks around the home, “smart” appliances are set to go mainstream in 2013.  Appliances on the market for around the house like your fridge, washer, and dryer will be connected to Wi-Fi.  Consumers will be able to download an app on their smartphone, and notifications can be pushed to let you know when your laundry is done, or even when your child leaves the refrigerator door open.

Robots are coming to a playroom near you.  LEGO announced the Mindstorms EV3, to come out in the second-half of 2013, allowing your child to build the toy, integrate motors with built in IR sensors to allow them to move around, and connect them to an app on your smartphone—perfect for stimulating the minds of your tech savvy kids.

What connected technology do you want to see in your home this year?  Share them in the comments below.


CES 2013: Larger-than-life TVs in your living room

TheDigitalLife_UHDTVThe Consumer Electronics Show (CES), happening now through Friday, Jan. 11 in Las Vegas, NV, is where electronics companies like LG and Sony are unveiling the latest technology trends taking over the consumer technology market in the upcoming year.

Each year, several trends set an overtone to what consumers may see in homes around the world over the next year—be it super-sized televisions, automated thermometers, or even robot vacuums.

For the living room, homeowners will continue to see the bar raised for the term “high-definition.”  What was once called “4K” a year ago is now being simplified to “Ultra HDTV,” mainly as manufacturers are heavily promoting the technology as a mainstream standard in the living room for 2013.

Ultra HDTV, or UHDTV, rings in at a whopping 3840 × 2160 pixels, and quadruples the traditional 1080p television sets on market today.

Manufacturers like LG and Sony are planning to launch these sets over the next year—potentially ending up in your living room come next holiday shopping season.

When it comes to previous-year television trends, CES is proving that 3D is a slow-and-dying breed.  Whether it was with overpriced, ugly, 3D glasses that consumers had to purchase separately, or glasses-free 3D televisions that caused headaches, the fad seems to be fizzling out among television manufacturers this year.

Accessory makers are also starting to create UHDTV-compatible add-ons for television sets, which means Canadians will be able to take full advantage of the awe-inspiring and crisp resolution.

As for pricing, manufacturers are leaving that part out.  Analysts are predicting a relatively steep price-point for these units in 2013, so UHDTVs will continue to be for those looking to splurge on a TV that they will not see the full capability for a few years yet.

Rad or fad?  Do you think these larger-than-life TVs will be in your living room anytime soon?  Sound off in the comments below.