Coolest Tech Innovations: Now and Next

Turning Heads – Utilising Psychology

It’s always fun to engage in a bit of retro-futurism. Looking back, many of the speculations for how we’d be living today have been wildly off the mark. However, that only applies when the speculation was energy-based. Thanks to Moore’s law, just about anyone who incorporated information technology when they speculated on the future has been more or less on the money.

We expect to see a lot of cool new tech innovations unveiled at the upcoming CES® 2014 in Las Vegas. This helpful tradeshow guide is a solid resource for staying in the loop of what’s to come. But with all of the cool gadgets that hit the shelves so far this year, here are some of tech’s greatest accomplishments that merely hint at what’s to come.

In phones

Today’s manufacturers face a challenge. They must look into the corners of existing technology to find areas of improvement. They must explore the edges of the idea, not just the idea itself. Sony’s Xperia Z does just that, figuring out a way to work innovation into an area – smart phones – where Apple has rendered it almost commonplace by now. Just how did they do it, you ask? They’ve made their phone shatterproof and water resistant. Just to keep things holding up on the technical end, the 4G LTE high-speed connectivity, Snapdragon quad-core processor, and 13MP camera all but guarantee a powerhouse operation.

In home appliances

It seems we can’t get enough of Jetson’s-style smart appliances. They may not have feelings – yet, but products like the Samsung T9000 refrigerator are paving the way for smart appliance innovation nonetheless. The oversized LCD screen, located just above the icemaker, features an Evernote app that allows users to share videos, pictures, and yes, recipes. Calendar and weather apps are also included along with a variety of others. The innovation isn’t just on the outside. Three evaporators, two compressor units, and multiple sensors help maintain optimum food-grade humidity and cooling levels.

In computing

We can’t seem to get enough of tablet improvements. From its inception, the design seemed ripe for improvement speculations. Now, those speculations are coming true, and Lenovo’s IdeaCentre Horizon is proof. The 27-inch screen can either stand tall or lie flat. While this mini coffee table-sized screen is somewhat of a novelty for everyday computing, it is positively ideal for gaming. The tabletop screen is designed for multiple fingers – making it perfect for family game nights and physical interaction – and uses an Aura interface as well as Windows 8.

In audio

The Monster ClarityHD Katana wireless speaker features Bluetooth that uses apt-X codecs and AAC for lossless audio compression, which automatically catapults it into the realm of futuristic sophistication. The speaker utilizes an array of speakers as well as three, count ’em, three amplifiers that are sure to rattle the teeth out of the most hardened heavy metal fan.

In video

We can’t forget that innovation always was and always will be about size. LG’s 55EM9700 TV is a 55-inch OLED screen that’s only 4mm thick. True to futuristic expectations, the picture is clearer than ever. LG’s resolution is about as best as it can get these days, with no competition. Black levels have never been deeper, and the finest details absolutely pop from the backgrounds.

What’s ahead

This past year saw the rise of the smart appliances. It seemed if it was solid and you used it at least once a day, you could make it smart. In 2014, it seems cloud computing is the new smart.

It goes without saying that the increased reliance on cloud storage will maximize system speeds and efficiencies, not to mention memory.

As the vanguards of technology roll out inventions and improvements that propel us ever forward into the future, we can be sure to expect innovation that takes our breath away.

 

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