For the past several days, money expert Clark Howard and team have been at CES, the largest consumer electronics show in the world. Along with seeing some of the coolest gadgets on the market, the event has offered a glimpse into the future of technology and trends that will affect consumers’ home and work life in the future.
But who won CES 2018? What product was a clear winner, not only in critical acclaim but in affordability and practicality? Well, that’s something that the consumers will ultimately decide. That being said, there were a number of gadgets that looked like they could make an impact given the appropriate price point and clear benefit to the consumer.
Top tech: Here are some clear winners from CES 2018
Here are a few of the products and tech that stood out to Team Clark for their usefulness and potential to bring true value to the public.
The Gemini: Part smartphone, part laptop
One of the things that caught the eye of Clark’s radio show Executive Producer Kim Drobes is the Gemini PDA/ phone, a new take on the old-school palm-sized keyboards of the 1990s. Made by UK-based startup Planet Computers, the Gemini’s tagline is “Bringing the keyboard personal digital assistant into the 21st century.”
The Root robot aims to teach kindergartners how to code
Designed in Harvard University’s Wyss Institute, the Root robot aims to teach children the basics of coding, starting with sequencing and general problem solving and going all the way to teaching professionally used languages.
Carrier AC unit cuts energy by sensing when no one’s home
The Carrier 9,000 BTUh residential AC takes advantage of a ductless system, which allows different temperature levels for every room in the home. The system comes equipped with Wi-Fi, so users can adjust its settings from any location — as long as they have their smartphone.
The Wallet Card is a smart credit card that can store multiple accounts
The Wallet Card, made by Cheswick, Pennsylvania-based financial technology company Dynamics Inc., can store multiple accounts — effortlessly toggling between a debit, credit or reward card account on its screen — and features an online data connection that allows banks to instantly change your credit card numbers, making it pretty useless if it falls into the wrong hands. It can also be programmed to notify you of coupons or bank balances and purchases, adding value to the consumer.
Nuhear smart earbuds let you optimize how you hear the world around you
Nuheara earbuds use what is called “digital signal processing” to orchestrate how you hear the world around you, company exec David Cannington told Team Clark. By lowering certain noises in the background or heightening frequencies in different environments, users can also customize how and what they hear. Paired with a smartphone, users have access to Bluetooth and streaming capabilities and can toggle between music and their surroundings or — get this — mix the two in any suitable concoction according to their audio preferences.
The Guardian is a DIY water leak prevention system utilizing sensors & Wi-Fi
The Guardian, which is from electrical component manufacturer Elexa, is a water leak prevention system that can be installed without a plumber and even without any tools. It consists of a valve controller that clamps on top of your pipe and leak sensors that are to be placed around your home’s common water lines, such as behind toilets and washing machines.
Like any other year, CES 2018 featured some really awesome tech, much of it impractical or expensive. The real value comes when consumers can clearly see how these products can make your life better in some way. Clark is big on many of these devices not because of how cool they are, but because they have a real chance to save consumers money. And what could be cooler than that?