Friday, January 15, 2021

CES 2021


The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) that takes place annually in Las Vegas has become the "must be" place for tech product launches and demonstrations. Unfortunately, due to the pandemic CES went from taking place at the Las Vegas Convention Center to being held online in a digital format in 2021. Even though I wasn't able to enjoy a trek out west, the opportunity for this dad blogger to participate in CES this year from January 11 - 14, 2021 was still appreciated.

While it just wasn't the same not being able to interact with people and products in-person, the digital format of visiting virtual exhibition booths and attending streaming presentations still provided an interesting experience. From watching Verizon Chairman & CEO Hans Vestberg provide a keynote address on how 5G will be rebuilding the framework of 21st century infrastructure to participating in a augmented reality Jeep ride there was a lot to geek out at during this year's CES technology conference. Here are some of my favorite products that I discovered at CES 2021:


ces 2021

Because of COVID putting a damper on our summer travel plans for 2020, we installed a pool to provide some staycation fun for our family last year. Because of city zoning requirements there was only one specific spot in our backyard we could put it ... which happened to be right next to a large pine tree. Because this tree majestically rises up into the sky almost four stories looking like a Christmas Tree you might see in Rockefeller Plaza and would be really expensive to chop down we left it be. That means I'm always cleaning the pool ... it is amazing just how many pine needles drop from that tree!

So my eyes tripled in size when I came across Aeriel from Pivot - Solar Breeze at CES. This intelligent, autonomous pool cleaning robot eliminates the need to hand-skim a pool by combining the force of solar-power with AI technology to collect debris from a pool's surface. Thanks to solar power Ariel continuously skims the surface water removing up to 95% of dirt, leaves, pollen, dust, hair, oil and more before the debris decays and sinks to a pool's bottom. This skimming results in less bacteria and algae growth, less filtration and sanitization needs, and less pool pump runtime, resulting in energy savings and reduced environmental impact.

I want one of these!


strike smart baseball

I'm a huge baseball fan so this smart baseball from Jingletek to help pitchers train caught my attention. Analytics are now a key part of evaluating and coaching athletes in baseball whether it is amateur or professional play. Sensors are woven into these baseballs to track a variety of statistics without impacting the feel or movement of the ball. Plus the sensors can be wirelessly charged further reducing the impact of having them installed within a baseball.

Much more accurate than a radar gun, STRIKE time detection includes release/travel times and exchange/pop times providing a fuller picture into the speed of pitches. Because successful pitching is also more than just speed but also involves angles and rotation a ball takes when being thrown STRIKE also tracks those. It shows 3D spin rate and rotational axis of pitches among other analytical tools. Showing the angles pitches cross the plate also provide training tools that can benefit catchers and hitters as well as pitchers.

Maximize analytics to get the most out of training your players and coaching teams with STRIKE SMART BASEBALLS. Play ball!



I love ice cream and frozen drinks! Check out my recipes for home made Dole Whip and Pickle Slushies for instance. But I often find myself over-indulging in store bought cartons of ice cream or having a lot to clean up when making treats at home ourselves. With my kids having peanut / tree nut allergies many brands of ice cream aren't safe due to contamination issues so even make a lot of our own ice cream at home. To be honest that can be a real chore!

Adding a COLDSNAP device to our kitchen would be amazing! Being able to make cold soft-serve style deserts in a snap would be so convenient. Slide a single serve aluminum pod into the device and within 60 - 90 seconds you are all set. No mess and no fuss!

Ingredient pods don't need to be refrigerated so they can be easily shipped and stored plus are recyclable after they've been used. Because ingredients transfer directly from the pod to a bowl or glass there is no clean up of the machine either. Set for commercial release in mid-2021 if they handle processing of ingredients for these pods appropriately this could be a game changing device for people with food allergies. Fingers crossed there aren't peanut / tree nut ingredient or contamination issues with their supply chain!

From a dad's perspective I also appreciate that COLDSNAP was created as a father-daughter collaboration. As pre-bedtime activity, entrepreneur Matt Fonte with his daughters Sierra and Fiona spent time nightly working on invention journals coming up with ideas for a product they could create together. The girls came up with the notion of a Keurig-style quick-serve, hassle-free ice cream maker and their dad contributed the engineering and business expertise that led to the development of COLDSNAP. What a great #girldad story!



Use your fingerprint to secure your life with a FLYWALLET Keyble. Scan a fingerprint into a unisex bracelet that acts as a key to your car, credit cards, bank account, home and more. Just touch the bracelet with your finger to confirm your identity than place your FLYWALLET against a scanner to unlock a door, access a device, or make a payment. No more having to carry a wallet or keys in your pocket with this device!

The FLYWALLET Keyble device also incorporates a clock as well as sensors into the device. So it can do a variety of tasks and monitoring involving vital signs, heartrate, motion and voice commands as well. It is like a high tech Disney Parks Magic Band that you can use every day! 



Here is another use of fingerprint technology to make life more convenient. BENJILOCK by Hampton Fingerprint Sport Lock uses your fingerprint to unlock a door, padlock or bicycle lock. Don't want to worry about remembering a combination, juggling around a rotary lock, or keeping track of a key? Just place your finger on BENJILOCK and voila it opens right up.

The Fingerprint Sport Lock features a stainless steel shackle, slim form factor, and the ability to store up to 10 fingerprints. BenjiLock devices open with the touch of a user’s programmed fingerprint, and multiple print capability enables friends and family members to easily share their lock’s use without having to share a key.

The new BenjiLock-enabled U-Lock also stores up to 10 fingerprints.  It is weather-resistant, IP65-rated, and features a pick-and drill-resistant cylinder and a bolt cutter-resistant, covered hardened steel shackle. BenjiLock By Hampton portable locks are powered by rechargeable lithium batteries that provide an estimated 6 months’ use on a single USB charge. 


BenjiLock Fingerprint Door Lock brings security to your fingertips by integrating the BenjiLock biometric sensor that quickly scans a fingerprint with Hampton’s highly secure deadbolt design. The Fingerprint Door Lock can be opened three ways: by using its fingerprint sensor, by entering owner-programmed numeric codes on a secure digital keypad, and by traditional metal key. It was specifically designed to operate without the need for Wi-Fi or Bluetooth, and provides homes, apartments and vacation rentals with a turnkey solution that is not dependent on network availability or external power for access.

square off

Enjoy playing chess but have difficulty finding opponents to square off against? With a SQUARE OFF chess board you can match up versus 20 different levels of AI, find someone to play against through the 30 million people registered with or connect online with friends and family. You can play a game on a physical chess board against someone who could be literally anywhere in the world.

Play on a handcrafted chess board with intricately carved pieces. After you make your move watch as your opponents pieces move on their own across the board. Checkmate! 

If your online opponent has a SQUARE OFF board too they'll see your pieces move automatically as your board registers your actions. Someone can also play utilizing an app that shows both players movements in a video game style view. Whether playing versus the artificial intelligence mode or against a human opponent remotely how cool is that to see their pieces move across the board as if they were sitting there next to you!

earfun free pro

Since the pandemic started like lots of people around the globe I've been doing a lot of things for work that used to be in-person via video conference instead. To ensure that I can hear what is going on plus drown out noises in my own background from the dog, kids virtually learning at home, and my wife remote working from our house during Zoom meetings I've been wearing some bulky, over-the-ears noise-cancelling headphones. While these have performed nicely for providing a sound bubble during my professional engagements, I've received a fair share of ribbing about my looking somewhat unprofessional having the appearance of an aircraft controller.

The EarFun Free Pro earbuds can provide you with the same quality clarity and noise-cancelling of bulkier over-the-ear headphones but are hidden from view. They pop right into your ear. EarFun Free Pro earbuds 4-microphone array environmental noise cancellation technology provides crystal clear audio. They provide 6-hour playtime per charge and come with a convenient charging case. Plus if you want to use them for working out EarFun Free Pro are sweat and water resistant.

Light weight at 4.1 grams, using advanced Bluetooth 5.2 to provide stable connections with a working range of 49ft, and fast charging with 2 hours of playtime within 10 minutes of charging. There is a lot to like when it comes to these earbuds. It is amazing how wireless earbud/headphone technology has evolved over the last few years. Noise cancelling earbuds with incredible clarity that weigh less than a piece of paper ... incredible! 

With hundreds of exhibitors participating in CES, it would be too overwhelming to share with you all the tech being showcased at the event. This roundup is of items that would make an immediate practical difference in my life that I came across during CES 2021 so they are getting a Geek Daddy nod of approval. I hope you were as geeked to learn about some of these items as I was while roaming the virtual exhibit space of this year's Consumer Electronics Show.

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