You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Best of CES: 5 Innovations That Stood Out From the Crowd

Big, fat and power-hungry TV screens, entire show floors without power: The 2018 Consumer Electronics Show had it all.

But while there was plenty to see at CES, there were a few products that stuck out from the crowd. Not only did they impress on their own merits, they also could pave the way for entirely new ways of consuming media, be it in your living room, in your kitchen, or on the go. We selected five such notable innovations for Variety’s first “Best of CES” list.

CREDIT: Courtesy of LG

LG Display’s Rollable 65-Inch Ultra HD TV

Big-screen TVs deliver a big picture, but their massive sizes make them hard to handle—and to some, a fat chunk of black glass hanging on the wall is an aesthetic blight. Now you may soon be able to take your 4K TV to go: LG Display has created the world’s first 65-inch Ultra HD rollable OLED display. It curls up like a poster into a storage case (about the size of a sound bar), making it far more portable than traditional HDTVs and allowing for better space utilization. For now, it’s a prototype, coming two years after the company demo’d a much smaller rollable 18-inch OLED video screen at CES. LG Display, one of the world’s biggest manufacturers of display panels, also showed off a dazzlingly vibrant 88-inch 8K OLED display with a pixel count 16 times that of 1080p HD.

Samsung The Wall modular TV screen
CREDIT: John Locher/AP/REX/Shutterstock

Samsung “The Wall” modular TV screen

Ever moved and found that your big screen TV suddenly didn’t look so big anymore in your new digs? Soon, Samsung wants to make it possible to simply grow your TV to the right size: The company has invented a modular TV that is comprised of numerous book-cover-sized screen tiles. Ultimately, the company envisions that consumers will use this technology to turn their TV into a giant video wall. The company showed off a 146-inch version of this modular TV at its CES booth and boasted that its micro LEDs could deliver a stunning picture quality while saving energy at the same time. There’s no word yet on how much the modular TV is going to cost, but Samsung wants to start selling it in 2018.

Lenovo Smart Display
CREDIT: Courtesy of Lenovo

Lenovo Smart Display

The next generation of smart speakers… looks a bit like a small kitchen TV. Amazon once again led the pack with the release of its Echo Show last year. Now, Lenovo is getting ready to sell its own smart display, powered by Google’s Assistant. It offers you quick voice access to the weather, news, recipes, YouTube videos, video chat and more. The full HD display also doubles as your personal photo album, and it can even be used to watch video streams from numerous apps via the integrated Chromecast functionality. Lenovo also helpfully integrated a mute button and a physical camera shutter for privacy reasons. But what really sets the device apart from the competition is its design, especially for the $250 version that comes with a 10-inch screen: A light and modern white front is complemented by a curved bamboo backing. An 8-inch version with a matte grey back will cost $200 when the device becomes available in Q2.

CREDIT: Courtesy of Nuraphone

Nura’s Headphones for Personalized Sound

Do you hear what I hear? Probably not—and Aussie startup Nura claims it’s cracked the code on this problem. The company says its Nuraphone headphones can automatically determine within 30 seconds the unique characteristics of how an individual perceives sound, and then adjusts audio playback accordingly. The Nura system works by playing a sequence of tones and detecting the inner ear’s otoacoustic emissions in response to the sounds. Founded in 2015, the company crowdfunded the product on Kickstarter and began shipping the $399 (U.S.) headphones late last year. Nuraphones use a combo in-ear/over-ear design to let listeners experience bass “in a tactile way” while preserving clarity in higher ranges, according to the startup.

HTC Vive Pro VR headset
CREDIT: Courtesy of HTC

HTC Vive Pro VR headset

HTC didn’t reinvent the wheel for its latest virtual reality (VR) headset. Instead, the company took its existing HTC Vive headset, and gave it a better-looking display with 2880 by 1600 pixels, resulting in a 78% increase of the resolution over the previous version. The Vive Pro also comes with integrated headphones, and is a bit more comfortable to wear than its predecessor. Later this year, Vive Pro owners will also be able to buy a wireless module to explore VR without being tied to their PC with cables, as well as new racking hardware that will allow them to play in a tracked space of up to 11 by 11 yards. All of it should help to make VR much more immersive.

More TV

  • Jeremy Sisto, Ebonee Noel, Dick Wolf,

    Dick Wolf Plots Cross-Network Crossover Between CBS, NBC

    Veteran television producer Dick Wolf, best known for creating the “Law & Order” franchise, is eyeing a cross-network crossover between his CBS freshman procedural “FBI” or its in-the-works spinoff “FBI: Most Wanted” and one of his NBC shows, such as “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” or “Chicago P.D.” The decision whether to go with [...]

  • Prince Albert II of Monaco (C),

    Jessica Alba, Gabrielle Union's 'L.A.’s Finest' Opens Monte Carlo TV Festival

    Prince Albert II of Monaco opened the 59th Monte Carlo Television Festival on Friday at a glittering ceremony at the principality’s Grimaldi Forum attended by Gabrielle Union and Jessica Alba. The Hollywood actresses presented the French premiere of their action cop series “L.A.’s Finest,” which has just been renewed for a second season. “You typically [...]

  • Gabrielle Union and Jessica Alba'L.A.'s Finest'

    Jessica Alba, Gabrielle Union Speak About Horrific 'L.A.’s Finest' On-Set Accident

    Actresses Gabrielle Union and Jessica Alba spoke about how the horrific accident on the set of their action cop series “L.A.’s Finest” affected them and the crew at the 59th Monte Carlo Television Festival Saturday. They also paid tribute to the main victim of the incident, executive producer/co-showrunner Brandon Sonnier, whose leg was amputated below [...]

  • Emmys: How a Social Media Campaign

    How a Social Media Campaign to Game the Emmys Led to This Week's 'Block Voting' Scandal

    The Television Academy’s “block voting” controversy has quickly become the talk of Emmy season — and that appears to have been the org’s point. According to multiple insiders, the number of people disqualified from voting in this year’s competition is believed to be small, only around three members (out of nearly 25,000 members overall). But [...]

  • No Merchandising. Editorial Use Only. No

    TV News Roundup: Hulu Drops Trailer for 'Veronica Mars' Revival (Watch)

    In today’s roundup, Hulu dropped the official trailer for the “Veronica Mars” revival and HBO revealed more cast members for “Lovecraft Country.” FIRST LOOKS Hulu has dropped the official trailer for its revival of “Veronica Mars,” set to premiere on July 26. The series will bring back most of the original cast, including Kristen Bell, Jason [...]

  • Dan Stevens

    'Legion' Star Dan Stevens Says His Character Would Fight Thanos, 'Wreak Havoc' in MCU

    Dan Stevens said his powerful, telepathic mutant Legion would do some serious damage if he ever crossed over from the eponymous FX series into the Marvel Cinematic Universe. “Legion would wreak havoc. He’d probably take on Thanos, let’s see that,” he told Variety on the red carpet at the premiere of the trippy, mind-bending superhero series [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content