CES 2016: here's everything new
The 2016 International Consumer Electronics Show, or simply CES 2016, has already kicked off in full force, bringing us heaps of new devices and announcements, all in a very short period of time.
To help you better navigate your way across this jungle of announcements, we are rounding up all the new mobile gadgets that made their official debut at CES 2016: smartphones, tablets and wearables.
Samsung is obviously the juggernaut in town at CES 2016: the biggest phone maker in the world, however, did not show the Galaxy S7 at the electronics show. Instead, it brought a crazy new fridge filled to the gills with tech, a few new TV sets and more. What about mobile? Well, while we did not get to see the Galaxy S7, Samsung brought an exciting new tablet running on Windows 10: the Galaxy TabPro S. A massive 12-inch device with an AMOLED display, it goes in direct competition against the Microsoft Surface Pro 4 and Apple iPad Pro. Keep in mind that it is also running on the powerful Intel Core M system chip and has a battery that lasts up to 10.5 hours.
The other big mobile announcement were two new versions of the Gear S2: a rose gold and platinum model that up the game in terms of looks and style. Samsung also announced that it is bringing Samsung Pay to its existing Gear S2 and S2 Classic, so it will be more convenient to pay for goods, right from your wrist.
Huawei has grown tremendously over the past couple of years. From an obscure Chinese company that consumers know practically nothing about, it has elevated itself to a name that is being recognized more and more. In fact, it sold over 70 million devices in the past year, placing it among the world's top 5 phone makers, and it won the honor of building the Nexus 6P.
What did it bring to CES 2016? Well, it was not just one thing. First, it unveiled a beautiful new gold version of the Nexus 6P that is coming to the United States. Also, it showed once again in great detail its next big thing: the Huawei Mate 8. And we say 'big' with a quite literal meaning: this is a 6-inch phone with a powerful system chip and the promise for a battery life above most others.
Then you have an affordable metal phone with a fingerprint scanner: the Huawei GX7, and it looks very alluring for budget buyers. Finally, the Huawei MediaPad M2 is a new tablet that comes with stylus support and will compete against other 10-inch tablets, most notably from Apple and Samsung.
LG showed two new phones, part of a brand new series of devices, the affodable 'K' lineup. Touting them as phones with 'advanced camera technologies', the K7 and K10 feature plastic bodies and the typical for LG rear-positioned side keys. We expect very competitive pricing on these two.
And while there is no high-profile mobile product from LG to really make a lasting impression, the new rollable display that the company showed gave us hope for a bright future and some crazy new devices ahead.
HTC didn't announce any new phones but two "connected" products - its second generation virtual reality headset - Vive Pre - and a $400 fitness system that is designed to measure, monitor, and manage fitness, sleep, activity, and nutrition.
Chinese company LeTV has arrived out of nowhere on the phone market with a bunch of new devices last year, and this year, it's going full steam ahead with the LeTV Max Pro. This is not just any other phone: in fact, it's the first phone to be officially announced to rock the Snapdragon 820 system chip.
Back in September of 2015, Lenovo announced an affordable, selfie-centric smartphone called the Lenovo VIBE S1. It featured pretty good midrange hardware and a dual front camera setup for some bokeh effects, all for the reasonable price of $299.
The first day of CES 2016 will certainly go in the history books of Fitbit. Well, at least judging by the 20% hit its stock took right after the company announced a big new product: the Fitbit Blaze, a $200 fitness tracker/smartwatch with a color touchscreen. Investors fled from the stock in obvious fear that entering a direct rival with the Apple Watch and other smartwatches is a losing game. However, one has to point out that the Fitbit Blaze has an important advantage: 5-day battery life, sleep tracking, continuous heart-rate monitoring, and a cheaper price tag than most of the smart timepieces.
Speck - yes, the case maker out of all companies - brought an actually exciting new accessory: a foldable virtual reality headset that folds out when you need to use it and folds back neatly in your pocket, so that you can carry it conveniently with you.
The $1,500 Tag Heuer Connected is the most expensive Android Wear smartwatch and we got to take a closer look at it at CES 2016.
After Swiss powerhouses Tag Heuer and Swatch made their reserved entries in the post-"not a smartwatch" age, American designer brand Fossil is another traditional watchmaker who got the digital bug and produced a range of wearables.
Misfit its brand new fitness tracker at CES 2016. The Misfit Ray, as it's called, is an elegant and affordable way to keep track of your steps, as well as vibrate when you get new calls, messages or notifications.
The Withings Go is a simple wearable that tracks your walking, running, and other activities and aggregates that data in its companion iOS or Android app.
Alcatel has brought a brand new affordable Windows 10 phone to T-Mobile. It's a simple phone offering great value for the money, and no, it's no iPhone or Galaxy rival, but it will do just fine looking for something cheap for themselves or relatives with no high smartphone demands.
Miami-based Blu unveiled two new phones at CES 2016: the Vivo 5 and Vivo XL, and both are expected to be available in the United States in the not too distant future.
ZTE has unveiled a couple of affordable new phones destined for the United States. Nope, you should not buy them for yourself, but in other news, ZTE's actually interesting nubia brand of higher-end devices has declared aspirations for a global foothold. Here's to hoping it arrives in the Western world, as it definitely brings more excitement that ZTE's affordable phones.
In Las Vegas today, Intel announced a partnership with sneaker manufacturer New Balance to develop a new smartwatch that will be made for runners. The timepiece, according to New Balance chief executive Rob DeMartini, will allow runners to "focus on their training so they can constantly improve performance."
Acer has not yet unveiled anything major, but there is one product that it showed: a family-friendly tablet at a rock bottom price, the Acer Iconia One 8. It has a MediaTek chip and a basic configuration, all in a price wrapper of just $100 (no contracts involved here).