Looking for some new products for 2014 that were showcased at the recent Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Vegas? There were literally hundreds of products that were shown and demonstrated. However, that doesn’t mean that all of them will be available to buy this year, if at all.
So how do you do figure out what products will be available to add to your collection of gadgets? If you’re me, you spend hours reading all the tech press and press releases from the companies in question and pay attention to what sort of reaction the devices garnered from the press and other attendees. All you have to do, however, is keep reading.
Bigger Tablets from Samsung Will Come to Market
In the Android world, Samsung has a virtual lock on first place in sales volume (and quality in my opinion). They started small with a five-inch model, a seven-inch tablet, introduced (and then canned) an eight-inch unit, and then came out with the Galaxy Tab with a ten-inch display. They showcased the newest in the Galaxy lineup of products at CES in January — the Galaxy Note PRO 12.2.
That’s right — this one’s got a full 12-inch display. The Galaxy Note PRO 12.2 builds on the ability to truly multi-task that was introduced in older versions of the Note, making the multi-tasking experience more seamless. In fact, the display size allows you to have four different apps running at the same time and you can be using and viewing them all at the same time. Think split-screen, with the screen split four ways.
The Note PRO has 802.11ac Wi-Fi, allowing for network speeds of up to a little over one gigabyte. It also has three gigabytes (GB) of RAM (The available memory to run programs in) and either 32 or 64 GB of storage (the area you can store programs, music, and other files in), as well as micro-SD support. The operating system for the Note PRO is Android 4.4 (kitkat). It is also available in a 3G cellular model.
Work and Play at the Same Time with an UltraWide 34-inch Monitor
I saw this one and decided I simply have to have it, especially with the NASCAR season opening up in two weeks. A 34-inch monitor will let me watch the races while I diligently work away at keeping you up to date on the world of technology. LG debuted this baby and it made a pretty big splash with CES attendees. Looking through the features and specs, I can see why.
The LG 34-inch UltraWide Multi-tasking monitor sports a 21:9 aspect ratio — aspect ratio refers to the ratio between width and height — instead of the standard 16:9 you see with widescreen displays. It also comes with applications that allow you to create custom screen splits — such as a four-way split, allowing you to perform four tasks at once. Before this display was introduced, you had to have two screens to do anything resembling this. Even better, you can split the screens between two different devices. Photographers will love being able to see the original image from their camera and the modified image in their image manipulation software at the same time.
If you’ve ever worked with a spreadsheet with more than 10-15 columns and felt the frustration I have at having to scroll left and right constantly, this display will be a godsend. The UltraWide is both PC and Mac compatible. Cost estimates run in the $600 to $1,000 range, with the actual price most likely falling somewhere in the low end of that range.
Hewlett-Packard Introduces New Products for 2014
Imagine toiling away all day on your home or office computer and then taking a break with your tablet (or smartphone) and not having to remember that you’re in a different operating environment. To be honest, HP sees these as being designed for the business market, but I see them catching on for the home computer market segment also. I say this because the HP Slate 21 Pro is an all-in-one computer-there’s no separate monitor and processor unit, the processor and monitor are a single, slim unit.
Another reason I think these will become popular for the home computer segment is the price — starting price range is about $400, and the Android App marketplace is a thriving ecosystem with millions of apps to do just about anything you can think of. The Slate 21 Pro comes with 2 GB of RAM and 16 GB of storage, as well as a media card reader. Network capabilities include 802.11n Wi-Fi, 10/100 Ethernet (admittedly somewhat slow), and Bluetooth 4.0, plus it also has two USB 2.0 ports on the back and a webcam with built-in microphone.
Pebble 2.0 SmartWatch Will Be Available Soon
There are a few smartwatches available already, but the makers of the Pebble watch (featured image above) will soon be releasing the 2.0 version of their Pebble watch: the Pebble Steel. What I like the most about this watch is that you’re not tied down to a single brand or model of mobile device, nor are you tied down to just Apple’s iOS or the Android operating system for your device. This watch is so cool that it was rated as one of the “10 best at CES 2014” by several tech industry pundits.
The Pebble Steel comes with both leather and metal bands. From what I’ve seen, the leather band is black, however, when purchasing the Steel, you can choose between either a brushed stainless band or a matte black band. Adding to the attractiveness of the watch is the fact that it’s tested for water-resistance up to five atmospheres, or 50 meters depth. It’s also compatible with the ever-increasing ecosphere of Pebble apps. I also like the fact that you can choose from many different time displays.