Technology

25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

Smart massage chairs, roll-up TVs and leather laptops: The world's biggest tech show is upon us.
25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy
Image credit: June
Entrepreneur Staff
Associate Editor
19 min read

January marks the start of New Year’s resolutions (for the bright-eyed and bushy-tailed people who still make them), the beginning of a few bleak months of cold weather (for those of us in the northern U.S.) and -- for the 52nd year in a row -- the debut of thousands of gadgets at CES, the world’s biggest tech show.

The halls of some of the most gigantic hotels and casinos in Las Vegas are brimming with tech giant executives, startup founders, keynote speakers, journalists and, above all, the newest gadgets -- from innovation at its finest (such as a television with a roll-up screen) to its strangest (like a $200 “smart belt”). It’s a gathering of more than 4,000 exhibiting companies and more than 182,000 industry professionals, according to last year’s attendance audit. The good news: Entrepreneur is on the ground at CES, and we’re slicing through the noise to bring you the top direct-to-consumer products that could potentially enrich your life, whether it’s at home, in the workplace or on the road.

Click through the slideshow to see the products we spotlighted -- everything from smart massage chairs to smart ovens.

25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

The smartest of smart desks.

The smartest of smart desks.
Image credit: Cemtrex

Price: $4,500 to $5,700 (depending on finish and PC)

Available to purchase: Now

With its new SmartDesk, manufacturing company Cemtrex aims to revolutionize the way we work by making the places we work intelligent, efficient and free of distractions. SmartDesk is a motor-driven standing desk that easily adjusts to a user’s preferred height, and it comes with a PC, three built-in monitors and built-in smartpods (similar to AirPods) to listen to music, make calls and more. The desk doesn’t run on a traditional Windows computer -- instead, this one has been tweaked to allow for a “smart gesture system,” said Cemtrex Executive Vice President Lucky Gobindram. That means you can copy, paste, zoom in or out, screenshot, flip a page or scroll -- all without touching a keyboard or mouse. A wireless smartphone charger is embedded in the desk’s surface, as is technology that allows you to simply place a document down on the desk in order to scan it (in two clicks, you can then add the digital document to your chosen cloud storage service, such as Google Drive or Dropbox). Say goodbye to using scanner phone apps to email yourself documents.

25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

The first smart printer.

The first smart printer.
Image credit: HP

Price: $199

Available to purchase: Now

The world’s first smart printer, according to HP, whether you’re printing your resume, a legal document or an acting headshot, can save you endless headache. Tango can print anything straight from your computer or your phone -- meaning that through the app, you can print smartphone photos, documents from cloud storage services including Google Drive or Dropbox, Facebook photos and more, as well as scan documents directly to your email. One of the most unique aspects of Tango is its appearance -- it folds up into a smartly designed rectangle with your chosen finish, and it could easily masquerade as the spine of a photo album or large reference book on any bookcase. If you’re running low on ink, the printer automatically alerts HP, which will subsequently send you more. Finally, it’s eco-friendly: EnergyStar qualified and 50 percent recycled plastic.

25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

A ring that does it all, from activity tracking to online security.

A ring that does it all, from activity tracking to online security.
Image credit: Motiv

Price: $199

Available to purchase: Now

Bracelets can be cumbersome no matter how sleek, and they’ve always dominated the market for wearable fitness tracking. But their reign may soon be over. Wearable tech company Motiv showed off its Ring again at CES this year, and it has at least one clear advantage over products such as Apple Watch and Fitbit: It’s easier to wear, and it takes up less space. Motiv’s Ring takes on all the usual suspects -- activity, heart rate and sleep tracking -- but the company says it’s the first wearable tracker that also deals in personal online security. As long as a website accepts QR codes in its two-factor authentication setup (for example, Amazon and Facebook), users can simply perform the correct special gesture with the smart ring and pass the test.

25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

A smart massage chair that listens to your requests.

A smart massage chair that listens to your requests.
Image credit: HumanTouch

Price: $10,000

Available to purchase: March 2019

The average massage chair is figuratively rigid -- users can choose from a few options and adjust the intensity, but there’s often no way to truly pinpoint problem areas. Human Touch aims to change that with its new Supernova product, which the company calls the first Alexa-enabled massage chair. You can choose from a list of commands outlined in an app to tell the massage chair exactly what you’d like in a session, and it’ll remember your preferences the next time you use it. “It gets really every single part of your body,” said HumanTouch online sales manager Cathy Lou. Plus, there’s a bluetooth speaker in case you want to play any soothing ocean sounds from your sleep playlist.

25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

The first smart security camera that allows you to ‘save’ familiar faces.

The first smart security camera that allows you to ‘save’ familiar faces.
Image credit: Ooma

Price: $149.99

Available to purchase: Q1 2019

False alarms are frightening, especially when they’re coming from your home security camera. That’s one of the key drivers behind SmartCam, an indoor-outdoor product that goes beyond traditional facial recognition by allowing a user to “save” familiar faces after their first detection to cut down on unnecessary alerts. The camera comes from smartphone and security company Ooma, and if you’re looking to cover your entire property, it’s also sold in three- and five-packs.

25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

A seven-in-one smart oven to save you space and peace of mind.

A seven-in-one smart oven to save you space and peace of mind.
Image credit: June

Price: $599 to $799 (depending on included accessories)

Available to purchase: Now

June’s tagline is “smart cooking made easy,” and from its CES demo, it’s relatively spot-on. It’s a seven-in-one cooking tool -- convection oven, air fryer, dehydrator, slow-cooker, broiler, toaster and warming drawer. It’s also designed as a space saver (relatable if you live in a tiny New York City apartment), and it comes with a recipe app to walk you through a wide range of different meal options. Finally, June’s camera recognizes up to 80 food items and counting, so as soon as you put something in the oven, it can determine ideal cook time. (And if you’re extra particular about exactly how golden-brown your pie turns out, you can watch things cook in real time via the June app.)

25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

A smart device that analyzes your body’s metabolic makeup to create smart meal plans.

A smart device that analyzes your body’s metabolic makeup to create smart meal plans.
Image credit: Lumen

Price: $300

Available to purchase: September 2019 (or pre-order now for August shipping)

“Eat healthier” was the most common New Year’s resolution in 2018. In the past, that could require meticulous meal planning and a heaping portion of self-control, but there’s a new smart tool in town -- and Lumen aims to bring efficiency, accessibility and ease to your health goals. It’s an elongated device that fits into the palm of the hand, and every morning, it analyzes a user’s breath to determine their metabolic process that day (whether the body is using carbs or fat for fuel). Based on its findings, Lumen then creates a personalized meal plan for the day -- taking any dietary restrictions into account -- to help you reach your health goals. A validation study out of San Francisco State University suggested that Lumen’s technology was comparable to the gold standard in measuring changes in someone’s metabolic fuel usage.

25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

A smart headband to help you meditate.

A smart headband to help you meditate.
Image credit: Interaxon

Price: $159 for Muse, $249 for Muse 2

Available to purchase: Now

Some of the world’s most influential leaders swear by meditation -- Arianna Huffington, Ray Dalio and Marc Benioff, to name a few -- and Muse, a brain-sensing meditation headband, aims to make the practice more accessible. It’s the brainchild of Interaxon, a brainwave-controlled computing technology company, and it tracks a user’s brain signals through seven different sensors to offer real-time feedback on what’s happening in your brain (calm winds signal an at-rest mind, while storm sounds may denote a distracted one). Interaxon recently debuted Muse 2, an updated device that goes beyond brain activity to offer additional feedback on heart rate and breath patterns. The company’s primary algorithm for focus was honed over the past few decades in university labs, and its technology was co-developed and tested through the Mayo Clinic, NASA and the MIT Media Lab. Muse’s app offers guided meditation exercises, and after each session, Muse walks you through your progress using graphs, charts and future tips.

25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

A refrigerator with a digital display for photos, notes and step-by-step recipes.

A refrigerator with a digital display for photos, notes and step-by-step recipes.
Image credit: Samsung

Price: Likely between $3,000 and $6,000

Available to purchase: 2019

At CES’s Media Day, Samsung debuted its redesigned Family Hub refrigerator, which sports a large screen on the door to showcase family photos, calendars, notes and more. Part of the redesign incorporates updates to the company’s virtual assistant, Bixby, which can answer questions, find and showcase step-by-step recipes and even turn on other smart kitchen appliances at your request. You can use the hub to pull up the weather, preset the oven temperature and more; if you’ll be home late from work, you can write a note on the refrigerator remotely.

25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

A GPS tracker for your pet.

A GPS tracker for your pet.
Image credit: Tractive

Price: $69.99, plus $5 per month

Available to purchase: Now

Say goodbye to lost pet flyers. Tractive, a pet location-tracking company, offers real-time GPS tracking for your dog or cat (or any animal that wears a collar). The clip-on, waterproof device works in 150 countries, and unlike many other pet tracking products on the market, there’s no limit to its range. Tractive also recently announced a new pet product that pairs GPS tracking with activity tracking (and the cat version is embedded inside a collar instead of a clip-on). That device should be in the same price range and available around Q3 2019, according to Tractive.

25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

Smart light squares that decorate a space and sync with music.

Smart light squares that decorate a space and sync with music.
Image credit: Nanoleaf

Price: $249 for a nine-panel starter kit

Available to purchase: Now

Paintings and tapestries are timeless, but a true techie may opt to decorate a space with smart squares instead -- they can be arranged in any number of patterns or even added together to decorate an entire wall. Green tech company Nanoleaf recently released a new line of smart light squares called Canvas, and they’re made to entertain and set ambience (essentially, they’re made to look cool). You can download different colorscapes online to fit with any mood, and each panel’s interactive touch sensors mean that by placing a hand on it, you can change its color, adjust its brightness or switch it on/off. If you’re listening to your favorite beats, the squares’ built-in music sync will make them change color according to a song’s rhythm. You can even download games online -- such as Whac-A-Mole -- to play on your set of squares.


 
25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

A waterproof, spherical speaker.

A waterproof, spherical speaker.
Image credit: MWA

Price: $49.99 for the smaller model, $79.99 for the large

Available to purchase: End of Q1 or early Q2 2019

If you’re a music lover who hangs out with other music lovers, you’re aware of the value of a tech-centric speaker. But what about a waterproof speaker with 360-degree sound and a 100-foot range for Bluetooth connectivity? CYLO is a spherical speaker dreamed up by designer electronics company MWA (or MiWorld Accessories), and it’s built for parties, outdoor gatherings or just hanging out with friends in surround-sound. You can pair up to five of the devices together to play in tandem, they boast six to eight hours of play time each and they’re submersible in water up to 33 feet down.


 
25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

A leather convertible laptop.

A leather convertible laptop.
Image credit: HP

Price: Starting at around $1,200

Available to purchase: Now

There are few things more sophisticated than walking into a modern-day meeting with a leather folio under your arm. But what if it wasn’t only for show -- what if that dapper item was your laptop? That idea drove HP to release Spectre Folio, the first leather convertible laptop (it’s not a case; the leather is the outer layer of the computer itself). The laptop seems to have been built with versatility in mind, with a touch-screen and three possible screen positions -- including lying flat to resemble a tablet. You can snag the Spectre Folio with either a full HD or 4K display (but note the latter uses more battery power), and specs include a 12- to 20-hour battery life and up to 16 gigabytes of memory.

25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

A sleek desktop monitor with no wires in sight.

A sleek desktop monitor with no wires in sight.
Image credit: Samsung

Price: $399 to $499 depending on model and size

Available to purchase: Pre-order now

It’s directly proportional: The more you love tech, the more you’re surrounded by wires. And that can get old fast. Samsung wants to change that with its new desktop monitor, which can be stored flat against the wall when you’re not using it, freeing up more desktop space for your other work. Space Monitor has three possible screen positions and a clamp-type stand that hides any cables, and it comes in two possible sizes: a 27-inch QHD screen or a 32-inch 4K one. According to Samsung, the minimalized stand design can increase your desk space by 40 percent. Hello, productivity.

25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

A roll-up television.

A roll-up television.
Image credit: LG

Price: TBD

Available to purchase: Spring 2019

At last year’s CES, LG introduced the prototype of its LG Signature OLED TV R (translation: a very high-resolution television that rolls up and disappears into a rectangular base station when you’re not using it). Now, that product is real and ready to ship this spring to anyone who can pay top-dollar for it. The rollable television is the world’s first, with a 65-inch 4K screen and a 100-watt Dolby Atmos speaker system. Music lovers should also know that the television offers “line mode,” when only one-fourth of the screen emerges from the base station and music controls are displayed.

25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

A hands-free suitcase that follows behind you wherever you go.

A hands-free suitcase that follows behind you wherever you go.
Image credit: Rover Speed

Price: $459

Available to purchase: Now

Traveling is often synonymous with lugging around your stuff -- from your home to the airport to a hotel to the airport to your home. And when that stuff takes up multiple bags, such as a carry-on, backpack and/or purse, it can be difficult to relax until you finally reach your destination. Cowarobot aims to change that with the Rover Speed, a suitcase that follows you around the airport or anyplace else you’re traveling through. You press a button to initialize the device, which signals four cameras and a laser in the handle to analyze your body shape and clothing. That way, the suitcase will know to follow you and no one else. The Rover Speed’s battery lasts for about five miles, and it comes in one carry-on size for now, but the company hopes to introduce larger suitcases for its next generation.

25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

An instant camera with bluetooth connectivity.

An instant camera with bluetooth connectivity.
Image credit: Kodak

Price: About $150

Available to purchase: Q2 2019

Instant cameras have been around for over 70 years, but they’ve made a comeback in recent years. Camera giant Kodak introduced a significantly updated model at CES: the Kodak Smile Classic Instant Print Digital Camera. It’s a 16-megapixel point-and-shoot camera with a pop-up viewfinder, an optional SD card slot and an accompanying app, which digitally saves any photo you take and offers optional filters and other photo enhancements. The device’s bluetooth connectivity helps serve a dual function as a printer -- users can print any photo from their camera roll, whether or not it was taken with the Smile. A 10-pack of the recommended Zink Photo Paper will set you back about $10, e.g. $1 per photo.

25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

A smart clock for your nightstand with alarm, weather, commute and calendar information.

A smart clock for your nightstand with alarm, weather, commute and calendar information.
Image credit: Lenovo

Price: $79.99

Available to purchase: Spring 2019

One buzzed-about consumer gadget unveiled at CES this year is a collaboration between Lenovo and Google: the Smart Clock, a four-inch touchscreen device built with your nightstand in mind. It offers simply designed pages to swipe through -- alarms, weather, commute information, calendar events -- as well as different clock face designs and a USB port to charge your phone. Say “Hey Google, good morning,” or “Hey Google, good night” to launch the morning or bedtime routines you’ve set, such as turning off a light, playing ocean sounds, dimming the screen and more. To respect user privacy, there’s no camera on the device and a microphone mute switch in back. Another perk? Any smart security camera that works with Google Assistant can stream to the device (“Hey Google, show me the kids’ rooms”).

25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

The first cordless hair dryer.

The first cordless hair dryer.
Image credit: Vologo

Price: $399, currently available for $275 on Kickstarter

Available to purchase: Now

Billed as the only cordless hair dryer on the market, VOLO Go uses infrared heat and lithium-ion batteries to heat hair via radiant heat instead of the traditional hair dryer’s conductive heating approach. The former heats hair “from the inside out,” according to creator VOLO Beauty, while the latter heats the air around your strands “like a toaster.” The device, a 2019 CES Innovation Award honoree, aims to help users avoid frizz and embrace energy-efficient hair care. (According to VOLO Beauty, VOLO Go uses about 600 watts versus a popular industry choice’s 1,800 watts).

25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

A distraction-free, on-the-go writing device.

A distraction-free, on-the-go writing device.
Image credit: Traveler

Price: $599, but available to pre-order for $349 until summer 2019

Available to purchase: Summer 2019

In the Information Age, we’re constantly surrounded by a deluge of distractions, and it can be difficult to find moments of pure focus -- especially if we leave that up to our own willpower. Product design company Astrohaus has introduced a potential solution, at least for writers and ideators, with the Freewrite Traveler. Billed as a “distraction-free writing device,” it’s a portable tool that solely offers users a platform to write -- taking browsers, emails and notifications out of the equation entirely. Your words sync to Google Drive, Dropbox or Evernote in real time, and a secondary console window can display the document’s reading time, word count, a timer or a clock. Astrohaus CEO and co-founder Adam Leeb said he dreamed up the device as a way to separate the “creative mind from the critical mind.”

25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

An e-bike that folds up and fits on the subway.

An e-bike that folds up and fits on the subway.
Image credit: Jetson

Price: $499

Available to purchase: Early spring 2019

Bikes may be fast, useful and eco-conscious, but they’re in no way portable. Electric transportation company Jetson aims to change that with the E-Hawk Folding Electric Bike, introduced at CES this year. Weighing in at about 40 pounds, it folds up three different ways -- and yes, you can tote it with you on the subway, though it may be a bit of a workout. The e-bike sports bright LED lights on its front and back, along with brake lights, a bell, a smart lock anti-theft feature and an LCD display showing speed, distance and remaining battery power. One charge should last about 20 to 30 miles, but the bike has pedals for whenever you want to use it in the traditional manner. The E-Hawk also has built-in shock-absorbent technology for a more comfortable ride and can reach speeds up to 16 to 20 miles per hour.
25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

Hover shoes.

Hover shoes.
Image credit: Jetson

Price: $299

Available to purchase: Early spring 2019

It’s a bird, it’s a plane, it’s … you, seamlessly gliding inches above the ground in your “hovershoes.” Jetson debuted its Motokicks Electric Hover Shoes at CES this year, and although products like this are often cooler in theory than they are useful in everyday life, the prototype suggests the kinds of transportation options that could become more mainstream years down the line. The “shoes,” which are really more like individual platforms for your feet, work via a battery (which lasts for about eight miles), a motor, communicating sensors and a gyroscope to keep the devices balanced. They can feel more natural than a hoverboard -- kind of like skates that require little to no motion on the user’s part -- and they can take you up to seven miles per hour. Jetson has been working on these shoes since 2015, and by about 2020, the company hopes to introduce a version that can travel over a wider range of terrain types.

25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

Wireless earphones that can charge your smartphone.

Wireless earphones that can charge your smartphone.
Image credit: Toshiba

Price: $99

Available to purchase: Now

True wireless earphones are somewhat of a rarity, but Toshiba showed its version off at CES this year. The RZE-BT700E model (yes, it’s a mouthful) has a battery life of about eight hours, and conveniently, upon removing the earphones from their portable charging case, they automatically turn on and pair with each other and your phone. There’s also a USB connector in the rear of the charging case that works like a powerbank for your smartphone. Another perk? Double-tap the earphones to automatically put them in assistant mode, so you can ask Siri or Google questions, e.g., “What’s the weather?” or “How do I get home?”

25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

A wireless charger that blends in.

A wireless charger that blends in.
Image credit: PowerPic

Price: $79.99

Available to purchase: Now

These days, wireless chargers often come in the form of a flat circular pad or a dedicated vertical stand. But what if you had one with dual functionality -- a wireless charger that, when you weren’t using it, didn’t just look like an unused wireless charger? Apple accessory company Twelve South answered that question with the PowerPic, a simple 5x7 wooden photo frame with embedded wireless charging ability for any Qi-enabled smartphone (iPhone, Pixel, Galaxy, etc.). Simply stand your device up inside the frame to charge it; when you’re finished, remove it to reveal an ordinary framed photo. 

25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy

Smart pepper spray with safety alert and GPS capability.

Smart pepper spray with safety alert and GPS capability.
Image credit: SABRE

Price: TBD

Available to purchase: Q3 2019

For decades, forms of pepper spray have been one of the most accessible ways for individuals to feel safe, and personal safety company SABRE aims to step that up a notch with its new Smart Personal Safety Device, debuted at CES this year. The new gadget comes with not only pepper gel but also GPS capabilities -- and an app that acts as a mobile safety alert system. When the spray is deployed, the app sends alerts with that individual’s location to assigned contacts or nearby users, and it’ll continue to track the user’s location after that initial help request. For consumers who prefer an alert notification to be sent to first responders, the app offers an optional paid subscription.

  • 25 Things at CES You'll Actually Want to Buy
  • The smartest of smart desks.
  • The first smart printer.
  • A ring that does it all, from activity tracking to online security.
  • A smart massage chair that listens to your requests.
  • The first smart security camera that allows you to ‘save’ familiar faces.
  • A seven-in-one smart oven to save you space and peace of mind.
  • A smart device that analyzes your body’s metabolic makeup to create smart meal plans.
  • A smart headband to help you meditate.
  • A refrigerator with a digital display for photos, notes and step-by-step recipes.
  • A GPS tracker for your pet.
  • Smart light squares that decorate a space and sync with music.
  • A waterproof, spherical speaker.
  • A leather convertible laptop.
  • A sleek desktop monitor with no wires in sight.
  • A roll-up television.
  • A hands-free suitcase that follows behind you wherever you go.
  • An instant camera with bluetooth connectivity.
  • A smart clock for your nightstand with alarm, weather, commute and calendar information.
  • The first cordless hair dryer.
  • A distraction-free, on-the-go writing device.
  • An e-bike that folds up and fits on the subway.
  • Hover shoes.
  • Wireless earphones that can charge your smartphone.
  • A wireless charger that blends in.
  • Smart pepper spray with safety alert and GPS capability.
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