When compared to the Vegas spectacle, virtual CES had its advantages, including reprieves from sensory overload, cigarette smoke, endless walks through disorienting casinos and narrow exhibit hall aisles, and bombardments of me-too offerings in saturated categories. And keynotes and panels made the transition well. But it also fell short in a few key ways, including the serendipity of meeting an old colleague, someone with common interests, and a product or service that inspired new possibilities. That last point was particularly true for products in smaller or emerging categories, especially from startups. Today's CES is as much a showcase for the latest business technology as it is for consumer electronics.
Despite the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) taking place online for the first time in its 54-year history, the all-digital 2021 CES still served as a window to the near future, featuring more than 1,800 exhibitors showcasing their wares – virtually speaking. Granted, it can be tougher to assess how impressive these products are without seeing them with your own eyes – like the latest TV technologies or self-driving cars – but the show managed to surprise and delight with several innovative offerings. As an annual tradition during CES, the following is a few gadgets I'd actually shell out money for – even if they're not available for a long while. Galaxy S21 or iPhone 12?:How Samsung and Apple smartphones stack up Teased by Samsung earlier in the week, Bot Handy is a domestic robot that can roam around your home to perform chores – such as picking up clothes from the floor or loading the dishwasher – but my favorite feature is pouring a glass of wine and bringing it to you. After all, after the year we've just endured, who wouldn't want this kind of high-tech pampering.
It feels like 4K is just barely getting started and 8K is already one-upping it. At the all-virtual version of CES this year, most of the biggest names in TV manufacturing like Sony and LG trotted out their upcoming wares. While the majority of the TVs shown maxed out at 4K resolution (which is still gorgeous and is supported by more movies and video games than 8K), there were a few sets that went above and beyond. Companies like Samsung and TCL proved that 8K is real and it's here -- just in time go to along with the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X, both of which will support it as soon as 8K games start existing. If you're unfamiliar with the distinction between 4K and 8K, you can brush up with our explainer, but the main thing you need to know is that it has 16 times the number of pixels as a 1080p display. If that sounds appealing to you, here are some of the coolest 8K TVs shown off at CES this year.
Samsung has unveiled its latest range of flagship smartphones, with three models ranging in price from £769 ($799) to £1,149 ($1,199). The S21 range from the South Korean tech giant features an entry-level model, the mid-range Plus, and the Ultra – which is the first S Series phone to be compatible with the Samsung's S-Pen stylus. The stand-out feature on all three devices is the upgraded rear camera system, which was heavily leaked ahead of today's announcement and features night and portrait mode as well as its 100x'space zoom'. Pre-orders of the handsets open today, and the phones will be available as of January 29. The Ultra also comes with S-pen compatibility, the first Galaxy device to do so.
Walmart is focused on things such as "what the future of AI will mean, or how robotics will change our business, and how 5G will change how people want to live and shop," says CEO Doug McMillon. Walmart CEO Doug McMillon was the big keynoter at the Consumer Electronics Show 2021, in a half an hour segment that covered a range of broad topics such as equality and leadership. He was hosted by Tiffany Moore, senior Vice President, political and industry affairs for the Consumer Technology Association. CTA president Gary Shapiro set the context: 11,000 stores in 26 countries, more than 2 million employees globally. McMillan started out a wage earner thirty years ago at the retail giant, loading trucks.
We'll admit, we weren't entirely sure what to expect when we agreed to judge the annual Best of CES Awards without an in-person show. How many companies would show up to an online-only show? What would we lose without being able to wander the halls of a massive convention center and see the products up close? As it turns out, we needn't have worried. More than 1,900 brands, big and small, turned up this year, according to the Consumer Technology Association, the industry group that organizes the show each year. What's more, many companies found socially distant ways to show us their latest and greatest in person, ahead of the show. In the end, we had enough fodder for 14 categories covering hardware and services in every sector from home theater to transportation to accessibility tech. We'll announce the winners tomorrow at 4:30pm ET during a ceremony on our virtual stage, which we'll livestream to Engadget.com We're also continuing tradition and opening up voting for our People's Choice Award -- our reader poll is live now and closes tomorrow, ahead of the ceremony. Please be sure to vote, and congrats to all of the finalists! The technology underpinning the Mudra Band might seem fanciful: sensors capture neural electrical impulses in the wrist and map them onto specific movements like a swipe or a tap, essentially letting you control an Apple Watch with subtle finger movements on one hand. There's no doubt the benefit of convenience -- you can operate your watch when your hands are wet or dirty, for instance.
The last time I wasn't in Las Vegas for CES, the iPhone didn't exist yet. A virtual show means that this year the Engadget team is experiencing things more like our readers. The upside is that it's easier to get a broad view of everything going on, and I didn't have to figure out how to pack a PS5 in my luggage. The downside is I'm not seeing any sweet new TVs in person. It's the smallest of sacrifices, but being able to hop on live video and chat/argue with the team over our favorite picks is helping to fill the gaps.
From smartphones to TVs, Sony is known for its impressive range of electronic products. Now, the tech giant is turning its attention to drones, launching a new spin-off brand called Airpeak. Airpeak is said to be the industry's smallest class of drone that can be equipped with Sony's Alpha mirrorless camera system. Sony hopes its new drones will support the creativity of video creators, and is even seeking collaborators to participate in the Airpeak project. Airpeak is said to be the industry's smallest class of drone equipped with Sony's Alpha mirrorless camera system The Airpeak model shown off at CES features a quadcopter design, with two landing gear extensions that retract upwards during flight.
Sony Corp. unveiled its Airpeak drone at CES, the world's largest consumer electronics and information technology show, which opened over the internet Monday. The 2021 Consumer Electronics Show, which is scheduled to run through Thursday, aims to create connections and showcase the latest in robotics, smart devices, digital health and more. Some 1,800 exhibitors are participating in the show, forced to go online by the coronavirus pandemic. Airpeak marks Sony's entry into the drone business. It can wield Sony's Alpha mirrorless cameras and is expected to allow creators to shoot high-definition aerial videos.
Drones have always been a high-flying success at the annual CES show. The latest drone with a buzz: Sony's Airpeak drone, which promises to be an eye-in-the-sky for filmmakers. Sony did not offer a lot of information about the drone, but showed a video of it – outfitted with a Sony Alpha 7S III camera – tracking the electronics company's in-development Vision-S electric high-tech vehicle from above. Captured was stunning footage of the snowy, wooded mountainous Austrian landscape. The Airpeak, Sony says, is the smallest class of drones that can carry such a camera.