Eight Remarkable Inventions Unveiled at This Year’s CES

From a smart grill to a bike that rides on water, these were the coolest—and strangest—gadgets at the Consumer Electronics Show

Rumor has it the Manta5 Hydrofoil Bike is extremely fun to ride. (Manta5)
smithsonianmag.com

For more than half a century, the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) has been the place for companies and inventors to display their newest and coolest gadgets and gear, and for investors and trend-spotters to take a gander at the technology of the future. Often, the most successful reveals will become part of our everyday lives.

Now-iconic items unveiled at past CES events include the VCR (1970), the camcorder (1981) and the Xbox (2001). Which inventions from this year’s CES, held this week in Las Vegas, will become as popular? Here are our picks for some of the most interesting, innovative, and simply smile-worthy entries.

The Lounge Chair-Mobile

If you’re older than 30 you may remember when the Segway debuted, back in 2001. After months of speculation and hype, the thing turned out to be a…$5,000 scooter. Sure, its self-balancing gyroscope technology was cool, but most people agreed it was goofy at best. Well, two decades later, Segways are all over our streets, used by airport workers, urban police officers, tourists and more. And this year’s CES brought the Segway’s successor: the S-Pod. Basically a giant, egg-shaped rolling chair controlled by a joystick, it’s earning some of the same jibes as the Segway before it: “a ridiculous lounge chair on wheels,” “a self-balancing stroller,” etc. It’s meant as a car substitute for short city drives (it can go up to 24 miles an hour) or an easy way of getting around large indoor spaces like malls. All giggles inside, we won’t be the least surprised if this is as popular as the Segway in 20 years.

Tags

Comment on this Story

comments powered by Disqus