My final day at CES was a whirlwind of last minute demos, shameful attempts at gathering more swag, and plenty of press information. I met people I hope to keep in contact with as well as people I consider to be celebrities and I felt honored standing in the same room as them. There were laughs, there were tears (mostly of joy, amazement, or fear), but most of all there was plenty of knowledge at my fingertips. This was something I was looking forward to for a long time. Here is my final day breakdown:
Cyborg Gaming MMO 7 Mouse
A few years ago I remember reading about this high-tech mouse coming out from Mad Catz. I don’t remember all the specs but I remember it offered five additional programmable buttons to really personalize your gaming experience. I’m guessing the gamers got outrageous yet again and strong-armed the designers to create an even more feature-rich gaming mouse. At CES 2012, Mad Catz decided to show off their new baby. The MMO 7 Gaming Mouse has 13 programmable buttons with six different quick-switch modes. It carries a DPI capability of 6400 sensitivity. Since it is primarily meant for MMO gaming, they release an exclusive add-on for WOW players for the mouse to work even more fluently within the game. It will start at $130.
This device caught my eye from across the convention floor. Probably because they had a giant model of it sitting in their booth. This gadget packs a huge punch and means a whole lot for the DIY community. Essentially, this is a bare-bones modular computer/server for personal use, and it’s super tiny. 4x4x4 all the way around with a very sleek design. Inside, it has a dual-core 64-bit processor and I/O ports galore. Plug in an SSD drive up to 128gb and it can run Windows or Linux. It can even run on two different 2560 x 1600 screens simultaneously and access the same resources. The possibilities for the future in not just personal use but in business use are pretty much endless.
When I was traveling the caverns of CES bright and early this morning, Nerdlocker Steven and myself had trouble finding each other in our it’s-too-early stupor. Therefore I wandered from booth to booth till he got to my neck of the woods. Thankfully, I was distracted by the pretty ladies giving out shirts at the Powerbag booth. I got a shirt of my own but then was lead to check out the bags themselves. Not only are these bags incredibly durable and comfortable, but they have a charger inside to charge all your gadgets. The bags have batteries inside that provide a recharge solution on the go. The standard Powerbag battery can charge the average smartphone four times before it will need to be recharged itself. A noticeable fact about the Powerbag is how light it is. I would never have known there was a battery inside if the representative hadn’t told me. It is conveniently hidden deep within the bag on a battery dock. You undock the battery and plug it into a wall. Once it’s done charging, pop it back in the dock and head out with a clear head. No more worrying if your iPhone will keep its charge all day; you can now charge on the go. Powerbag comes in all forms from backpack to messenger bag to briefcases, and batteries come in wattage up to 9000mAh. Prices start at $139.99.
On day one of the show, the nerds saw a tore-down version of the MimoMicro booth with images flaunting these neat little thumb drives. We are familiar with the company from their original Star Wars-themed drives ranging in size. I was finally able to track down a rep at the company to get the low down. They’re not just thumb drives, they are Micro SD card readers and they come in the nerdiest form ever. From Star Wars to full fledged DC characters, these are the perfect addition to any geeks knick-knack collection. While some may see the concept as being wasted on the Micro SD format, I found these devices to be the perfect solution for a problem I’ve been plagued with lately. As an Android user, I have the option of removable media/storage. This is a great feature for keeping your files, pictures, and even movies with you at all times. My issue is that I have a bunch of these tiny chips left over from old phones. Because they require an adapter for the common computer to connect to them, they are not the most practical options for use past your cell phone. With these adorable card readers, you can reuse that old storage space that’s been gathering dust, but I’m sure you can think of all the possibilities. The most attractive aspect (besides little Batman) is that they will only cost $12.99.
One of the most excitable places at the convention was the Griffin Booth, and not just because they were giving away shoulder bags, but because they had a huge variety of new accessories for Android and iOS devices. They really caught my eye for how fun and family friendly they were. Griffin has been hard at work to be the company you turn to for all your mobile accessory needs. They have a lot of competition but they seem to have the game on lock. We got a full walkthrough of some really cool products coming out this year:
Woogie Plush & App
It may not look like much, but this little plush toy has a lot of cool functionality for the toddler age group. Whether we want to admit it or not, we blindly hand our phones to our children as a desperate attempt to keep them quiet. With the Woogie, you can put your phone in the protective iCase (see what I did there?) after you fire up the free Woogie iPhone app and watch as your baby giggles at all the facial expressions the app is capable of. It comes in blue and pink and will retail at $19.99.
Helo TC & Assault
This little toy really brought the already obvious kid out of me. A remote control helicopter that’s controlled through Android and iOS. When you purchase the Helo TC Assault, you get the helicopter and the controller dock for your phone. The simple snaps allow support for pretty much any smartphone. Download the free app, connect the dock to your phone’s headphone jack, and start launching mini missiles at your co-workers. Retails for $59.99.
Crayola MyPhones Earbuds
What I thought was so cool about these buds, other than their wacky colors, was sound control. Obviously, these buds are meant for children or the like-minded. Crayola and Griffin worked towards providing earbuds that were limited in how loud they can become to protect young ears. Its built-in volume-limiting circuitry gives you those guidelines, so you can let your children listen to anything without worrying about hurting their tiny ears.
Wimm One Smart Watch
I went to two panels this week that were extra upbeat and exciting. Those being the back-to-back Gadget and App showdowns. Both of which saw new ideas being presented in all new ways with lots of giveaways to make the audience happy. I was fortunate enough to answer a trivia question correctly in the Mobile Apps showdown and won one of the competing devices in the Last Gadget Standing event: the Wimm One Smart Watch. This was especially exciting for me because it is a newly adopted technology and I wanted to test it out bad. Now I had my chance. It runs Android, has WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS, and has the beginning stages of its own Micro App Store. The watch face is detachable and comes with a tiny dock to charge on. What I used it for was a notification portal. A way to see my alerts without taking my phone out of my pocket. It connects to your phone through bluetooth and notifies you with a little buzz on your wrist when you receive a new text message. If someone is calling you, their face pops up on your watch and you can choose to send it to voicemail right from the watch face. It was a little ridiculous changing settings and connecting to wifi on the tiniest android screen known to man; thankfully they provide a web portal where you can change settings like weather location, time zone, and calendar account and it syncs automagically to your Wimm One module. While there isn’t much of an app market yet, I see a big opportunity for these types of watches going forward. Wimm has only released a developer kit, and it will run you a steep $299.
I may not be able to hold myself back from going back to the convention center to try and score some more swag. If I find anything interesting, you know where to read it: The only place for your inner nerd, Nerdlocker.