CES has been always been of the most anticipated shows every year where brands from around the world come to showcase their latest tech innovations. This year was no different. The show is held annually in the colourful city of Las Vegas. This year we saw many products in the prototype form. However, it is likely that we may see some of these concept projects make it to the consumer market. Nonetheless, here’s our roundup of tech that we found most innovative and fascinating.
The Thinnest Laptop Currently Available – The Acer Swift 7
Acer has lived up to its trend by showcasing an ultra-thin laptop dubbed as the Swift 7. This laptop beats its predecessor from last year which had the same name. This offering from Asus measures at just shy of 9mm in thickness at its thickest point. To give you a perspective, the laptop is just slightly thicker than the iPhone X which measures at 7.7mm. However, this is when the lid of the laptop is shut, giving it a thicker profile. When flipped open, the keyboard side of the laptop is super thin, just as much in thickness as a USB Type-C port.
At this point, this is as thin as laptops can get, without compromising on ports or keyboard hardware. The Swift 7, however, makes no shortcuts when it comes to what lies underneath its hood. It comes with Intel’s 7th generation i7 processor and 8GB of RAM. In addition to that, it comes with 256GB of internal storage in the form of SSD. Although the laptop may not be of interest to a gamer, or even a normal user considering its price tag. The laptop will set you back $1700! The laptop is aimed at a niche audience who are crazy enough to buy a laptop just for its sheer thickness.
An OLED Rollable TV From LG
LG is known for manufacturing one of the best display panels. The brand took an ambitious turn to showcase a television with an OLED display which is rollable. That’s right! The display panel can roll out and back inside a box that is placed at the bottom of the display. This television can have multiple use cases. For example, the display can be rolled in or out to vary the aspect ratio. When rolled halfway in, it can display a wide aspect ratio image. It could also be rolled almost all the way in and display information like weather or reminders. The TV will also come with a virtual assistant integrated.
This offering from LG is currently in its prototype phase. However, it may not be long before we see this technology make its way into the commercial market. LG has been known to experiment with curved displays before on its smartphones. Can they make this TV hit mainstream soon enough?
Smartphone Powered Laptop – Razer Project Linda
Late last year, Razer launched the Razer Phone, a smartphone aimed for pro-gamers. This phone was packed up to its brim with flagship internals. The highlight of this smartphone, however, was its display and speakers. The phone is currently the only smartphone to have a display having a 120Hz refresh rate. What this means is that the animations on the display appear super smooth and lag free. The other aspect that makes the phone stand out is in its audio department. The Razer phone comes with a set of stereo speakers that sound really great and give other smartphones a run for their money. Razer has gone ahead to capitalize on the capabilities of this smartphone through Project Linda. Razer showcased a laptop which is entirely powered by the Razer phone.
The laptop has a slot where the trackpad is located on conventional laptops. The Razer phone fits snugly in the cavity. The phone then connects to the laptop through its USB Type-C port.
The phone’s internal specifications is what will power the laptop. The screen of the phone will serve as the trackpad. The speakers of the phone serve as the primary speakers of the laptop. The laptop module will come with its set of batteries to back up the overall module. This isn’t the first time we have seen a concept of this kind. In fact, Samsung already has the DeX which is capable of performing similar functions, although with the help of a dock.
It will be interesting to see how Razer will take this idea forward. This laptop is unlikely to hit the markets anytime soon though. This will probably be because of compatibility issues with future Razer phones which may not fit in the slot, unlike the dock system deployed by the Samsung DeX.
Fingerprint Sensor Relocated – Vivo In the Screen Sensor
China-based smartphone maker Vivo was the first company to announce that it was working on a solution to accommodate the fingerprint sensor under the display last year. Post that announcement, not much was heard about its development until Synaptics announced that it was in the works of mass producing a fingerprint sensor located underneath the screen. At CES, Vivo displayed the first smartphone rocking this advancement in tech in the flesh. The phone showcased had an OLED display below which the scanner was located.This fingerprint scanner is limited to work only with OLED smartphone displays. This is because the OLED technology allows detection of the fingerprints and provides enough room for the scanner to be located close enough to the surface. LCD displays are equipped with a backlight which restricts the sensor to be located closer to the surface. It is very likely for this sensor to make it to most smartphones that will be launched in 2018. This sensor is relatively slow when compared to the ceramic sensor on the OnePlus 5T or Touch ID 2.0. There is still room for improvement and it is very likely for most flagship smartphones that roll out in 2018 will be equipped with it. This year, however, may still be early to expect under-the-screen fingerprint sensors on mid-range smartphones, but we could be in for a surprise if OnePlus or Xiaomi decide to give it a go anyway.
That’s a roundup of the most innovative tech ideas that were displayed at CES 2018. Are you looking forward to seeing these products make it to the consumer market? What are your thoughts?