Coolest gadgets and tech from CES 2016

Every year some of the coolest and weirdest new tech and gadgetry are displayed at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas.

Whether you want something as bland as a new computer monitor, or as off-beat as a game console for your pet, CES will deliver.

Here are some of the best gadgets and tech that were on show at CES 2016.

Faraday Future FFZER01 concept electric supercar

Faraday Future’s Tesla-killer, the FFZER01, is an electric car that produces over 1,000hp (745kW), goes from 0–100km/h in under 3 seconds, and promises to break the 320km/h mark.

Faraday Future said the FFZER01 rides on the same Variable Platform Architecture that will form the base of its production models.


Digitsole Smartshoe 01

Controlled from your smartphone, Digitsole’s new smart shoes feature automatic tightening of laces, foot warming, shock absorption, and a calorie counter.

Digitsole Smartshoe 01


Logbar’s ili pendant promises to “say goodbye to language barriers”.

Each device is able to translate between two languages, and works without a connection to the Internet.

Logbar plans to launch ili in English, Japanese, and Chinese. French, Thai, and Korean are coming soon, followed by Spanish, Italian, and Arabic, it said.

ili wearable translator

Parrot Disco

The makers of the A.R. Drone have unveiled a fixed-wing remote-controlled aircraft called the Parrot Disco.

Its autopilot and various sensors – including accelerometer, gyroscope, magnetometer, barometer, Pitot, and GPS – help control its flight and prevent manoeuvres that could bring it down.

Parrot Disco

A fitness band for every appendage, even for non-humans

Wearable tech was big at CES 2016.

The show featured multiple fitness bands, soles, bras, and belt buckles – here are some of the cooler fitness trackers, including one for pets.

Misfit Ray

Misfit Ray

The Misfit Ray tracks activity and sleep with a 3-axis accelerometer, uses a vibration motor for user feedback, and features a single multi-colour LED with which it provides inactivity nudges, text and call notifications, and a silent alarm.

The battery lasts up to 6 months, and the device is water resistant to 50 meters. The Ray is available at a starting price of $99 (R1,554).

Fitbit Blaze

Fitbit Blaze

The Fitbit Blaze watch tracks more than a dozen activities and records heart rate.

The Blaze is available for $199.95 (R3,139), with a stainless steel link band and a leather band going on sale in March for $129.95 (R2,040) and $99.95 (R1,570) respectively.

Fitkat Ultimo+

Fitkat Ultimo+

The Fitkat Ultimo+ is set to go on sale for $129 (R2,025), and features an optical heart rate monitor and skin temperature sensor.

Fitkat has also unveiled the Pulse, which puts all the same functionality of the Ultimo+ into a digital watch, for $120 (R1,884).

Ditching the heart rate monitor, Fitkat also has the Edge – an analogue watch with a hidden OLED display for notifications and fitness data – for $99 (R1,554).

All the devices feature Fitkat Guardian, which lets the wearer send an SOS notification to four third-party phones.

Canhe-Fit pet fitness tracker


The Canhe-Fit pendant for pets from Canhegat is a fitness tracker that monitors your pet’s activity levels.

Its companion app for smart devices gives nutritional advice depending on the breed, age, and weight of your pet.

Vuze virtual reality camera

Vuze from HumanEyes Technologies has two cameras on each of its four sides to capture what two eyes would see if looking in each direction.

It’s expected to retail below $1,000 (R15,700) from the end of 2016.

Vuze virtual reality camera

CHiP robot dog

WowWee’s CHiP robot dog can recognise its owner, go back to its charging station when it senses low power, slide sideways, and play fetch.

CHiP robot dog from WowWee

Bluetooth trackers

Another common problem a plethora of companies are trying to solve is the mad rush in the morning when you can’t find your keys or wallet.

Here are some of this year’s more interesting Bluetooth trackers.



Chipolo is Bluetooth tracker that you link to your phone.

If you can find your Chipolo but not your phone, you can shake it to make your phone ring.

The Chipolo has a suggested retail price of $29.95 (R470).



Available in 3 different designs, and with an Indiegogo campaign still running, Wistiki lets you trigger a phone notification via button or proximity, and your phone can set off a 90db alarm on the device.

Should you lose whatever your Wistiki was attached to, you can crowd-source locating the item or pet.

Other Wistiki app users passing close to the item can pick up the signal and anonymously report its location to you.

Polar Balance

Polar has launched Balance, a weight management service that combines the Polar Balance Bluetooth Smart scale, a Polar activity tracker, and the Polar Flow app and web service.

You begin by setting a target weight in Polar Flow. Polar Balance then keeps track of users’ activity and weight, and provides feedback and practical advice.

Polar Balance

Freedom True wireless Bluetooth earbuds from Altec Lansing

Altec Lansing unveiled its Freedom True Wireless Bluetooth Earbuds, wireless earbuds that run on rechargeable lithium ion batteries built into the housings.

They feature a six-hour battery life, a IPX7 waterproof rating, and Bluetooth-based tracking to enable recovery of misplaced units.

The earbuds are scheduled for a Q2 2016 release at a price of $149.99 (R2,041).

Altec Lansing's True Wireless Earphones

CES alumni that are still getting attention

There were also a few “older” gadgets that were getting attention at CES this year.

Akoustic Arts A

Akoustic Arts A

The directional speaker from Akoustic Arts, called the A, was launched at CES 2015.

Using a sound “beam”, the A promises to play sound from your phone or PC to only one listener, without preventing you from hearing what’s going on around you like headphones do.

Somabar Robotic Bartender


Also shown off at CES 2015, the Somabar is a robot in much the same way we call our traffic lights “robots”.

It won’t bring you your drink, but it does promise to thoroughly mix your cocktails for you from liquids in 6 refillable pods.

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Coolest gadgets and tech from CES 2016