The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas is the biggest tech show around and the place where far-out innovations are introduced. You’ll see what’s coming up in the next few years, including driverless cars, robots, smart pet toys and … boxer briefs that block out cellphone radiation. It’s a free-for-all at the CES, with some brilliant intros and some that leave us wondering.
So what do exhibitors at the show have in store for the home? Here are the coolest Consumer Electronics Show home trends for 2018.
1. Old school split-flap boards with a digital twist
If you’re old enough to remember the analog floppy-letter boards that announced departures at train stations, you may be excited to hear that a startup called Vestaboard is bringing them back, but better. You can now create and schedule messages via your smartphone to wirelessly add to your board whenever you want.
It would be a great industrial or vintage design touch in any home and a great way to remind you of important events. You can sync Google Calendar, Slack and Twitter to display messages and reminders on your board.
2. Pre-fab tiny houses, but better
If you love the idea of the tiny house but it cramps your design sensibility, you will love the pre-fabricated Flex House. It’s been “right-sized” at a well-thought-out 760 square feet. It’s not just sustainable, it’s also built with integrated smart home tech throughout. According to the builders, the house comes with these features:
- Whole house control by app or voice using Amazon Alexa
- Wemo smart plugs
- Rachio WaterSense smart irrigation controller that schedules irrigation depending on weather data
- A greywater recycling system
- Kwikset smart lock
- Smart lighting by Sylvania
- Sensi smart thermostat
- JinkoSolar solar panels
- Tabucchi Electric battery system
- EV charging station from Bosch for your car
3. Home entertainment robot that follows you around
Meet Keecker, the adorable pet robot that can project your favorite movie or YouTube video anywhere it can roll. It’s also a guard dog that can alert you to intruders via a camera and sensors by sending a video feed to your smartphone of what’s going on.
Keecker is fitted with navigation software that can follow you around the house. A self-adjusting HD projector and an impressive 360-degree sound system means you can watch high-definition movies on any available wall. It has a terabyte of storage, too, so you can play games or house media and music instead of streaming them wirelessly.
4. Hi-Fi speakers that double as wall art
Bang & Olufsen has created the most beautiful and customizable speaker system to date — the BeoSound Shape. Each speaker is available in a variety of colors and can be as modular as you need it to be. Group a small handful in a room in the design of your choice.
The panels are wireless and each have their own built-in speaker, amp and acoustic damper or a BeoSound Core hub so you can use AirPlay, Spotify or Bluetooth to play your music. The best part is how well the panels all play together. Bang & Olufsen developed an “upmixing algorithm” to always create a centered sound experience, regardless of where you’re hanging out in the room.
5. Wireless, plug-free kitchen
Design minimalists will love this one. Startup Urbaneer is redesigning small appliances and counter surfaces for small kitchen spaces by getting rid of electric cords. Its appliances will charge wirelessly and operate anywhere on charging countertops, making it possible to cook or prep from any corner of the countertop space. The wireless charging countertops feature wheels and a smaller scale that can work with most small kitchens.