We're only a couple of weeks into 2024, but the year is starting off strong with the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Nevada. Plenty of companies were there, showing off their latest devices, innovations, and concepts, from big companies like Google, LG, Samsung, and ASUS, to new and smaller companies you may not have heard of (but will probably hear more about throughout the year).
Yet, while there's plenty that happened at the CES 2024, we wanted to highlight some of the products that really stuck out to Android Central, from phones to wearables, TVs, mixed reality devices, and even some concepts that may or may not see the light of day.
ASUS ROG Phone 8 Pro
CES isn't known to have plenty of major phone launches, but that didn't stop ASUS from giving us what might be one of the best gaming phones of the year. We went hands-on with the ASUS ROG Phone 8 Pro, and it seems nearly perfect. It has a clean design, particularly for a gaming phone, a powerful new Snapdragon chipset, up to 24GB of RAM, and a snappy 165Hz OLED display. And while gaming phones aren't known for having the best cameras, the 50MP primary camera on the ROG Phone 8 Pro is already proving to be quite an improvement over previous iterations.
If you like RGB lighting, you'll want the non-Pro version, but the Pro has a new dot matrix panel dubbed AniMe Vision that supports various animations for notifications, charge level, incoming calls, and more user-customizable options.
The ROG Phone 8 Pro is available for $1,199, while its base Phone 8 sibling can be grabbed for $1,099.
Samsung In&Out Flip
Companies love to show off upcoming products at CES, but they also like to tease us with concepts that may never actually go on sale. Samsung had quite a spectacle at CES with its TVs, but the company also gave us a glimpse at some impressive display tech, namely the In&Out Flip. It's an evolution of the Galaxy Z Flip line that not only folds in like a regular flip phone but also flips outward. That's why there's only one display and no cover screen; you can just flip the phone outward when you just want to use part of the display or use both on the front and back.
Because the In&Out Flip only uses a single flexible display, Samsung says the phone achieves a "sleeker and thinner design," which is a goal for foldable phones, as they only get thicker when you fold them in half.
Unfortunately, it doesn't seem like we'll get this on a commercial phone any time soon, but it's cool to look at, and we can only hope.
Smart rings are slowly but surely becoming a thing as more companies launch their own takes. The Oura Ring has pretty much led the smart ring charge, but the Evie Ring is one of the latest challengers to enter... the ring. What's interesting about this device is the rather unique design and the fact that the Evie Ring is geared toward women with features like period tracking and mood logging. And thanks to the companion app, there's AI that will learn more about you to provide helpful insights about your health.
Battery life comes short compared to other devices like the Oura Ring, clocking in at four or more days. However, the charging case tops up the device in just 60 minutes, and you can take it anywhere with you. And the best part is that there's no subscription to take advantage of your features.
Movano first debuted the Evie Ring back in 2022, so it's taken some time for the company to bring it to market. However, it's finally available to buy for just $269 if you're an iOS user, with Android support coming later this year.
XREAL Air 2 Ultra
Smart glasses are another growing piece of tech, with various companies trying to grab their piece of the pie. XREAL is no stranger to the game, having launched a few models already, and the latest pair has its sights squarely on Meta and Apple. The Air 2 Ultra features a lightweight design that is not much larger than a regular pair of sunglasses. Of course, these do much more, thanks to its affordable take on mixed reality.
It comes with two Sony Micro-LED panels with 1080p resolution per eye and up to 120Hz refresh rate, a wider 52-degree field of view, and 6 DoF tracking enabled by the two front-facing 3D sensors so you can move around and interact with virtual objects within your space.
Where they differ from the Apple Vision Pro or Meta Quest Pro is that these glasses need to be plugged into an external device to work, such as a Galaxy S23 or a PC. However, these are also much cheaper than its competitors at just $700, which is one way to get mixed reality devices into the hands of more consumers.
This is an interesting one. The Rabbit R1 looks like the weirdest phone, although it's not exactly a phone in the traditional sense. It's a physical AI assistant that almost tries to replace your phone by learning how to use the apps you use and perform the functions that would normally require you to navigate settings and apps. Thanks to the large action model powering it and help from ChatGPT-4, the Rabbit R1 can learn how you do these things, and with the press of a button, you can tell it to do things from starting a Spotify playlist to shopping online.
The display will present you with cards related to your query, and the device doesn't run a traditional operating system, so you won't find apps here. That said, the Rabbit R1 can connect to your apps to learn how you use them. There's also a camera you can use for image-based queries.
With the rise in AI tech over the past year, it's no surprise companies are looking to create ways to create dedicated devices to tap into it. And while it's not immediately clear how helpful a device like this really is in practical use, the Rabbit R1 has already sold 10,000 units on its first day, and the device is expected to ship in Q2 2024.
LG Signature OLED T
LG made some big announcements at CES, including the fact that its new TVs will now have Google Cast built-in. But one particular TV really stands out from the pack, and it's the new Signature OLED T. It's not LG's first transparent OLED display, but it's the first meant for consumers, and it works almost completely wireless thanks to the Zero Connect Box that beams your content directly to the television.
When the TV is in transparency mode, it can give certain content a level of depth that you don't get with a conventional TV. Then, when you want that conventional viewing experience, you can bring back the black contrast screen so it looks like a regular OLED. And when the TV's not in use, it has an AOD function that can make the display look like a fish tank, while a small bar at the bottom uses the contrast film to display news alerts, weather, and other bits of information.
It may sound a bit gimmicky, but there's no denying that it's a cool piece of tech, and the 77-inch 4K TV will go on sale for an unspecified price sometime this year.
Anker MagGo Charging Station (Orb)
With Qi2 on the rise, more companies are beginning to launch products that support the standard. Anker is among the first, having shown off a few new charging products at CES. One of them is a large orb that charges MagSafe-compatible phones on the front, with plenty of ports to charge other devices on the back. It's an 8-in-1 charging station that includes three AC outlets, two USB-C ports, and two USB-A ports, making it perfect for any workspace.
The Anker MagGo Magnetic Charging Station is available now for $99, but iPhone users are the only ones who can take full advantage of the MagSafe charger, at least until we start seeing Android phones with Qi2 support.
Who needs a TV in your room when you can just have a ceiling lamp? Yeah, I said that right; this ceiling lamp is also a projector. The XGIMI Aladdin is capable of projecting a 100-inch 4K image with a 2000:1 contrast ratio and support for DTS audio. It's all tucked away inconspicuously into your ceiling. It's also powered by Android TV, so you'll have access to plenty of apps and content.
And when you don't need it as a TV, the projector also works as a standalone Bluetooth speaker, meaning it can help you get the party started.
Withings is one of our favorite health companies, making some of the best smart scales on the market. Now, the company has a new device dubbed "BeamO" that acts as a personal DIY health checkup device. It's a 4-in-1 "multiscope" that includes a thermometer, electrocardiogram (ECG), oximeter, and stethoscope, allowing users to monitor their health at home in a way that would probably normally require a doctor's visit. The device has powerful sensors and a display that can show your data in real-time as it's being measured. All the data syncs to the Withings app, which can then be sent to your doctor, and like other Withings devices, BeamO supports up to eight different users, so it's perfect for families.
You'll have to wait some time to get your hands on this CES Innovations Award Honoree, as it will go on sale in June 2024 for $249.
Lenovo ThinkBook Plus Gen 5 Hybrid
One device that took us by surprise is the Lenovo ThinkBook Plus Gen 5 Hybrid. It's a 2-in-1 Windows laptop that doubles as an Android tablet with the press of a button. As such, you actually have two separate sets of specs and processors to run each OS: a new Intel Core Ultra 7 for Windows and a Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 for Android.
As an Android tablet, it runs Android 13 and has 12GB of RAM, which isn't too shabby. As a Windows laptop, you get 32GB of RAM, 1TB of storage (versus 256GB for the Android side), an additional USB-C port, and a larger battery. Both share the 14-inch 2.8K OLED panel.
You get two devices in one for $1999, which would normally be a lot for a single device. When you're getting both in one, the price seems pretty reasonable. And while some may have preferred a ChromeOS/Android hybrid, the Windows/Android duo sounds like a winning combination. You get the fun bits from Android, such as the extensive library of apps, and you can also use it as a productivity device when used as a Windows laptop — something Android tablets always seem to aim for but always fall short of achieving.
Lenovo says the ThinkBook Plus Gen 5 Hybrid will be available in Q2 2024.
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Derrek is a long-time Nokia and LG fanboy who loves astronomy, videography, and sci-fi movies. When he's not working, he's most likely working out or smoldering at the camera.