Giant tech-gadget tornado in Vegas touches down at CES 2013

Sexy gaming tablets, waterproof smartphones, ruggedized cameras, and much, much more were available for inspection today at the giant International CES 2013 technology show.

Giant OLED TVs, tiny terabyte storage, and much more

LAS VEGAS— Sexy gaming tablets, giant OLED HDTVs, waterproof smartphones, ruggedized cameras, and much, much more were everywhere today at the giant International CES 2013 technology show.

Here's a sampling of what we liked the best from Tuesday's offerings as the show floor and its booths opened for inspection.

Razer Edge

Razer looks to be taking gaming on the go to the extreme, and surprise, it’s available now!

Razer is pushing its Edge as the world’s most powerful PC gaming tablet and, for the moment, it probably is. This gizmo has components, options, and ports galore, as well as some nifty keyboard and docking stations.

One thing is for sure: this isn’t your pappy’s Gameboy…

More info | $999 for basic model; $1300 for Pro model

Panasonic 4K tablet prototype

4K is the buzz phrase at CES this year, and it looks like this tablet wants to catch the wave.

Panasonic 's20-inch 4K prototype tablet runs Windows 8, rocks an Intel Core i5 processor, and is equipped with a front-facing camera. Not a whole lot is known other than the basics at the moment, but there is word that the battery could last about two hours on the go.

More info | Price not set

Olympus Tough TG-2 iHS

I once hiked to the top of North Dome in Yosemite National Park. I reveled in the beauty, pulled out my camera, and proceeded to drop it on the granite surface, turning it off permanently. I needed one of these.

Boasting a ton of high-end point-and-shoot specs, the Tough TG-2 iHS is also no slouch in the rugged department. Olympus says the Tough TG-2 is rated as waterproof to 50 feet underwater, freezeproof down to 14 degrees Fahrenheit, immune to drops of more than 6 feet, dustproof, and crushproof to weights up to 220 pounds.

More info | $380

Pantech Discover

Behind the façade of just another boring phone, the Pantech Discover delivers some top-notch features at a low, low price.

This smartphone packs a 12.6-megapixel camera that's capable of taking above-average photos and offers dual 3D surround-sound speakers. We were surprised at how loud and clear the audio sounded, and impressed with its lack of distortion, even at higher volumes.

More info | $50 with a 2-year contract; available on AT&T starting Jan. 11

Asus Transformer AIO P1801

The perfect unit for those who hate making decisions, this device wants to be a one-stop computer for all your needs.

The 18.4-inch screen starts as an all-in-one but can be removed to become a large, large tablet. It also has dual OSes: Windows 8 and Android 4.1 Jellybean, as well as dual processors (an Intel Core i5 or i7 in the docking base and Nvidia’s Tegra 3 in the tablet).

Finally you don’t have to choose one or the other, simply choose when to get your hands on it.

More info | Price not set

Kingston 1-terabyte thumb drive

So you don’t like leaving home without every file on your computer and everyone made fun of you for carrying around that huge external hard drive. Who’s laughing now?

Kingston's 1TB USB flash drive—the Kingston DataTraveler HyperX Predator 3.0—has read/write speeds of up to 240 megabytes per second and 160 megabytes per second, respectively.

However, note that with a USB 2.0 connection on your computer, you will only achieve speeds of up to 30 megabytes per second.

More info | Price not set

Project Piston: Xi3 and Valve

We don’t quite know too much about what’s in this little black box, but we know it could be huge for blending PC and console gaming.

Here’s what we know so far: Xi3’s Piston prototype is based on the X7A modular computer (starting retail price of roughly $1,000).

The Piston’s cost and components are currently classified, but we know the X7A crams a quad-core AMD APU, up to 8GB of DDR3 RAM, and a 32GB SSD inside a case that’s just over four inches long and three inches tall.

More info | Price not set

LG EA9800 Curved OLED TV

We’ve been watching TV all wrong. Why watch our favorite shows and movies on a boring flat pane when we can watch it on a stylish, immersive curved screen?

LG says the EA9800 has one of the industry’s first curved screens (Samsung also announced one at CES 2013)—the entire surface is equidistant from the viewer’s eyes. Don’t worry about odd distortion or losing detail on the edges, because this TV is supposed to work with your eyes to deliver some sweet visual media goodness.

More info | Price not set

Sony Xperia Z

You know how there is always one, lone puddle on the ground and your phone somehow leaps from your hand and lands perfectly in the center of it? If you owned an Xperia Z, that might not be so bad; Sony says it can survive a dunk in up to about 3 feet of water.

This Android-powered smartphone boasts a 5-inch, 1920-pixel-by-1080-pixel display, has a 13-megapixel camera, and uses a new version of Sony's Mobile Bravia engine that is supposed to boost contrast and make colors pop.

More info | Price not set

Philips HTL9100 sound bar

What’s that noise? Look out behind you! Oh, it’s just that sweet detachable, rechargeable wireless side speaker with 5.1-channel surround sound.

Philips uses a proprietary wireless technology that doesn’t invited interference problems from Wi-Fi or Bluetooth frequencies, and the company says the speaker can play up to 10 hours on a charge.

The soundbar has a wireless subwoofer, two HDMI ports, and supports Bluetooth audio streaming for wireless music playback. Finally, it has an orientation sensor that can tell whether you’ve mounted it on a wall or have it sitting on a shelf.

Now relax and stop watching scary movies before bed…

More info | $800

Sony's 56-inch 4K OLED TV prototype

If you want to see the clearest BIOS screen ever, you need to check out the video of Sony CEO Kazuo Hirai presenting the world’s largest OLED display.

To Hirai’s credit, he pressed on with his presentation even as the TV jumped from a blue BIOS screen to a black screen displaying a Windows error message. “Sony will continue to push the envelope of what you can do, what you want to do, and what you haven’t even dreamed of yet,” Hirai said.

(Click "More info" below to see Hirai and his blue screen in action)

More info | Price not set


Sorry kids, no more parties while your parents are away, at least if they have an iSmartAlarm system installed.

The $250 package—available on crowdsource-funding site Indiegogo—gets you the iSmartAlarm CubeOne, which is a square base that controls the whole system. It comes with a series of motion sensors that detect movement in the house, some contact sensors to detect breaches of windows and doors, a camera, and a remote control.

You can control everything from your iPhone.

More info | $250

Natural ID fingerprint ID technology

If you were impressed by James Bond in the movie Skyfall, you may be glad to know that fingerprint-scanning technology is maturing and determined to secure your touch devices.

The sensors from Natural ID lie beneath a smartphone or tablet’s glass display to unobtrusively scan your fingerprint and verify it. The company focuses on phone and tablet fingerprint technology because passwords and pins aren’t secure enough.

Hopefully we can all get our 007 fix with this technology. The name is ID—Natural ID.

More info | No price set

Audiovox MediaBridge

Perfect for those long, lonely road trips, Audiovox will let you talk to Siri all day no matter what car you drive.

MediaBridge is an aftermarket vehicle integration kit—a Bluetooth-enabled plug-and-play device that lets you control your car’s existing radio and head unit by talking to your iPhone, iPod, or iPod Touch.

It works with a vehicle’s built-in buttons to bring users easy Siri activation. If your car has steering-wheel voice buttons, these buttons can be used to control Siri. Otherwise, MediaBridge turns your car’s radio scan button into a one-touch Siri activation button.

Siri, where's the nearest rest stop?

More info | Price not set

Zensorium Tinke

No, it’s not a new iPod, though the bright colors and familiar shape may make you believe otherwise. This little thing is designed to keep you calm, alleviate stress levels and promote deep breathing exercises.

All you need to do is attach the Tinke to its iOS device via the 30-pin dock connector (no iPhone 5 support), and then place your thumb over the sensors so the device can measure cardiorespiratory levels.

Tinke captures blood volume changes from the fingertip using optical sensing and signal processing technologies.

More info | $119

Lukup Player

The Lukup Player wants to eliminate the hassles of the many different types of TV services by combining it into one colorful box.

There will also be a model that replaces the typical set-top decoder that offers unlimited cloud storage and 128GB of DVR capacity. It collects the programming information from your pay services and Internet content, and displays everything in a single interface; in other words, there's one HDMI input for everything you want to watch.

More info | $149 for the non-DVR version

Bang and Olufsen’s embedded wall sound system

It’s been far too long since I’ve impressed my friends with some over-the-top gadget or home feature. It may be time to invite them over to listen to my wall.

This four- piece sound system is built inside a wall and uses the BeoLab 15 (3-inch speakers that can be tilted 45-degrees), BeoLab 16 (a subwoofer with four 4-inch woofers) and the Amplifier 1 (includes six separate amps) to create a literal wall of sound.

Hang on to your checkbook though, because this will put you back a pretty penny.

More info | $4595

GM and Ford allow third-party apps

The future really is here when you have to have an app store for your car, and now YOU can develop the apps for them.

GM plans to offer developers a software developer kit (SDK) through its online developer portal at The portal will let developers work with GM to design, test, and deliver integrated automotive apps for the company’s new infotainment systems

Ford announced Monday that it would be the first automaker to open its in-vehicle infotainment app platform to third-party developers.

Can the CarFart app be far behind?

More info | Price not set

Cisco Videoscape Unity

When watching TV bores you to tears, just look over and check your Twitter, Facebook messages, weather, or anything else to distract from what you’re watching.

Videoscape Unity can help you with that. It's basically a template for a cable, satellite, or other TV service that integrates traditional broadcast television with DVR, on-demand, Web, and social network content. And in its ultimate form, you'd watch it on a video wall large enough to display the equivalent of several current HDTV screens.


More info | Price not set

Fisher Price Apptivity toys

We're starting them off younger and younger, aren’t we? It won’t be long before toddlers will fill us all in on the latest tech.

Fisher-Price showed off its new Apptivity line of toys, which pair a physical playset with its own iPad app. The toys are technically designed for toddlers and young children, but we got some time hands-on time with them and were treated to a play experience that’s potentially unlike any other.

More info | $100

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