Pause the Munch Button: CES 2015 Showstoppers

Written by Terry Gardner

CES Showstoppers is a press event that shows the media great gadgets over good food and drink. Check out our top five devices here.

aNewDomain — CES Unveiled always reminds me of the “how many can you squeeze into a Volkswagen” game. That seemed fun at 13 but not so fun by 25. In contrast, Steve Leon’s CES Showstoppers shows off great gadgets and offers room to move — plus wee grilled cheese sandwiches and other goodies. And there are real bartenders and top shelf booze.

Here are the devices that made me pause the munch button just so I could check them out.

Tune Turners – speakers and headphones that pump up your options

BeoPlay H8 by Bang & Olufsen is a Bluetooth 4.0 on-ear headphone with active noise cancellation that doesn’t muffle the music. B&O’s team at Showstoppers said that their engineers spent about two years developing the technology.

The BeoPlay H8 features soft lambskin on the leather ear pads and only weighs about a half-pound. I loved their sound and the way they felt on my head. And, since I have fairly small ears, they were almost over-ear headphones on me, which I liked. They have a long battery life with up to 14 hours of tune or talk pleasure. You can accept a call, advance tracks and adjust volume by tapping on the H8’s smooth metal finish. If you like gesture-based touch interfaces, you may fall hard for H8.

CES Showstoppers BeoPlay H8 Headphones

Their only drawback is the rather hefty $499 price. The B&O website states BeoPlay H8 will be available in February.

Altec Lansing showed off several weatherproof/waterproof devices, but the standout was the Immerse Earphones, Bluetooth sweat and waterproof earbuds that are perfect for a cardio workout, a swim or a snorkel. They are waterproof submerged in 3-feet of water for up to 30 minutes. Immerse Earphones can support two Bluetooth devices, so that you don’t have to unpair them from your iPad to use them with another Apple or Android device.

CES Showstoppers Altec Lansing Waterproof earphones

The suggested retail price is $99, and they come with a USB charging cable and a pouch.

Problem solvers

TechSlinger holsters your gadgets so you can be hands-free until it’s time for a quick draw. Inventor Nathan Crawford’s latest device is called TechSling Sport. It’s made with a lightweight, breathable fabric and can be adjusted to hold a cellphone or a tablet in thicker rugged cases. There are models for both 10-inch and 7 to 8-inch tablets. TechSling Sport and TechSling Mini sell for $74.95 each.

CES Showstoppers Nathan Crawford models TechSlinger Sport

FLIR ONE is a special case for iPhone 5 or 5s that helps users see the heat signature of a person, a pet or detect spots where a pet has soiled the carpet, etc. It works with a free Android or iOS app.

CES Showstoppers FLIR ONE

You can also use it to detect injuries in a pet. Campers can use it to spot wildlife in the dark, whether they are keeping their campsite safe or on a wildlife watch. Travelers could use FLIR ONE to embellish videos with some infrared shots of landscapes and people.

Although the MSRP is $349.99, the FLIR ONE is currently sold on Amazon for $249.95. FLIR currently doesn’t have a new case for the iPhone 6, but they said on their website that the case will still work on an iPhone 5 or 5s without a SIM card. At CES 2014, when Todd Townsend interviewed Andy Teich about FLIR ONE, the product was not yet on the market, and no Android app existed.

A teaching toothbrush

The Kolibree Connected Electric Toothbrush is designed to work with smartphone apps to teach kids and adults to improve their dental health with better brushing. This smart toothbrush vibrates similarly to a Sonicare toothbrush, but any resemblance ends there.

The Kolibree Connected Toothbrush has special 3D sensors and a built-in accelerometer to provide brushing feedback via smartphone apps. Kolibree compares the brushing feedback to having GPS in your mouth that can track exactly where you have been so it can graph your problem areas before your dental hygienist points them out to you.

At Showstoppers Kolibree showed me the free Pirate app, where kids collect gold coins with proper brushing. The free app for older kids and adults is called Kolibree Coach. The apps should be available soon on Google Play and iTunes. For a more in-depth look at Kolibree, check out Becket Morgan’s report.

And that’ll do it. Back to those tasty sandwiches.

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Image Credits in Order: BeoPlay, Altec Lansing, Terry Gardner