Where does one even begin when discussing CES.
As anticipated, there were lots of new, cool technologies but there was a lot of the same too. For the first couple of days after CES ended, when people asked me what were the coolest gadgets I saw, I just froze. Now that I’ve had time to recover from CES with a brief tech detox, I’m clear on the cool stuff from this year. I picked up on a bunch of cool trends happening at CES and this list of life essentials and nostalgic games getting reinvented with a 2019 upgrade will definitely make you want some new gear.
TRU Zip by Nite Ize
Yes, this company reinvented the zipper and patented it. Sure, the classic interlocking teeth design was working just fine but there were major improvements to be made. For starters, I think anyone can identify the sound of a zipper opening or closing. They make a signature noise that is distinguishable much like Velcro does when you pull it open. Nite Ize has successfully created a silent zipper using their toothless design that slides to close the seal smoothly, silently, and very securely.
This toothless design enables the zipper to be such a strong seal, that it makes the bag waterproof and dustproof tested to IP67. The Nite Ize RunOff Bags come in varying sizes from a pocket-sized wallet, a toiletry bag, and even a large packing cube. In addition to the TRU Zip zipper, the RunOff Bags feature a translucent and smartphone-friendly front for locating items easily or using your phone without removing it from it’s protected pouch.
Nite Ize launched this new line of bags with patented Tru Zip Technology at CES while celebrating their 30th anniversary. Still led by the original founder, Rick Case, Nite Ize is continuing to create innovative, inventive solutions including over 500 products in categories like Travel, Mobile, Hardware, Pet, LED Lights + Accessories, Bike + Fitness, and Games + Fun.
Kohler Numi 2.0 Intelligent Toilet
We recently heard of Bill Gates’ efforts on funding the reinvention of the toilet to become waterless, for use in communities without access to clean water. Kohler’s version of the toilet reinvented is the exact opposite of what Gates is looking for.
The need for magazines and books in the bathroom to occupy your time while handling “business” is over. The new Kohler smart toilet is equipped with Bluetooth enabled smart speakers with Alexa built in. That’s right, you can now control your smart home and ask your toilet life questions you would only ponder in solitude. You can simultaneously blast some of your favorite beats and enjoy the included ambient LED light show that syncs with the music.
You might be thinking that all of these features are quite excessive. You’re right. Thankfully, there is some really useful tech being used in the Numi like superior water efficiency, a heated seat, and personalized cleansing & drying functions. The price point is estimated to be near $8,000 for a black one and it is anticipated to be available for purchase at the end of this year.
Arcade 1 Up
Exhibiting at CES for their first time, huge crowds were drawn to their pop-up retro arcade booth. Featuring infamous, nostalgic game titles like Street Fighter II, Centipede, Pac Man, and Galaga, the booth was lined with mini arcade cabinets — and people playing them.
One of the main things that set Arcade1Up apart from other companies reproducing the games is that they have exclusive licenses to use the original artwork displayed on the cabinets. A staple detail needed to trigger that nostalgia response to get consumers to pull the trigger on a $299 retro gaming device.
The Arcade1Up cabinets are smaller in size and lighter in weight than the classic cabinets we played in arcades — making them more man-cave friendly. The monitor is a 17” LCD screen and the full package comes flat — IKEA furniture style — but should be easier to assemble than your typical bookshelf. All of the arcade cabinets come with multiple playable titles but if variety is your flavor, the Atari 12-in-1 bundle is probably your best bet.
Atari PONG by Universal Space
Pong is considered one of the earliest arcade video games dating back to 1972. The redesigned version takes the game out of 2D and into the 3D world. The tech under the table powering the movement are articulated magnets.
Instead of a ball, they use a cube which does ricochet off the walls a little differently than we are wired to expect after years of learning tennis and pool angles. The block resetting after a scored point is quite mesmerizing though.
It really is a beautiful design but unfortunately, at $3000, it is not affordable enough to make it an at-home console. We can expect to the more expensive arcade and cocktail table versions of PONG at arcades, bars, hotels, and restaurants. Watch a video of gameplay below.
Do you have a favorite nostalgic game or life-essential you’d like to see reinvented? Let us know in the comments.
Peter Salib is a contributing writer at Grit Daily. He has been going to CES in Las Vegas consecutively for the past 7 years since the age of 21 and is an avid attendee of events nationwide. Having attended hundreds of events, he is now a co-founder of Event Integrity, the first integrity-based, vetted marketplace for event professionals. He also frequently works with startups to consult and advise on media, strategy, events, and fundraising. His dog, Scruffy, was featured on the Today Show with Kathy Lee & Hoda and was dubbed “Scruffy the Wonder Dog.”