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CES 2024: The most interesting new tech at the trade show

The annual convention in Las Vegas is full of unusual inventions.

Martyn Landi
Thursday 11 January 2024 09:40 GMT
A Samsung Ballie robot is on display at the CES tech show (John Locher/AP)
A Samsung Ballie robot is on display at the CES tech show (John Locher/AP) (AP)

Thousands of gadgets have been unveiled at the CES technology show, including laptops and connected cars, but a range of unusual and less mainstream devices are also on display.

Many come from smaller, start-up firms and look to use technology to help people in very specific ways such as to aid them with a disability or as a solution to a problem around the home, at work or with a pet.

Here is a look at the some of the most interesting tech announcements at CES in Las Vegas.

– .Lumen Glasses

Romanian start-up .Lumen describes its Glasses as reproducing the main characteristics of a guide dog in a pair of smart glasses for the visually impaired.

The company says it has created them by effectively scaling down the technology used for self-driving cars and placing it into a headset.

It then uses haptic feedback – vibrations – to guide the wearer as they walk.

Currently in clinical testing and production, the firm says it hopes to fully launch the device in the second half of 2024.

Samsung Ballie

First introduced in 2020, Ballie is Samsung’s AI home companion robot which follows users around and helps them with daily tasks.

The small, circular robot can connect and manage home appliances but its major update is the addition of a built-in projector, which means it can run video calls for users, as well as stream video wherever they are, as well as use the projection to give visual reminders and prompts about tasks based on a user’s schedule.

It can even act as a house sitter while users are away, Samsung says, sending video updates of loved ones and pets.

When it debuted four years ago, reaction to Ballie was mixed but the increased presence of AI-powered assistants in mainstream tech since then means the revamped Ballie has been very well received among CES attendees this time around.

– Flappie smart cat flap

Swiss start-up Flappie have come to CES with what they say is the world’s most intelligent cat flap – one which has “prey detection” and can stop your cat bringing in small animals it may have caught.

The device uses AI and a built-in camera to detect when a cat brings home prey and temporarily locks the flap to prevent them bringing it into the house.

Flappie comes with a companion app, allowing users to keep track of their pet’s behaviour and to control the flap remotely.

It is set to launch in Europe in spring.

Rabbit R1

Looking to completely change the way people interact with technology is the Rabbit R1.

A small orange rectangle with a screen and a camera, the R1 is effectively a walkie-talkie for an AI assistant that start-up Rabbit says should replace busy smartphones which are too full of apps no longer easy or simple to use.

Instead of having to scroll through apps to find the right one to complete a task, the Rabbit R1 uses AI and a large action model (LAM) to find and use the app once a user has given the voice prompt.

The idea is to eventually replace the busy, app-icon filled screen of a smartphone with this simple device, which Rabbit calls the “simplest computer”.

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