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IFA 2018: All the coolest tech we've seen so far

IFA 2018, like most big technology trade shows, has a mix of new tech products that fall predominantly into one of two buckets. The first bucket is the practical, more or less predictable one with iterative product updates. In here you'll find the next flagship phone we all know is coming, or laptops with the newest Intel CPUs that show up on a regular schedule, like the tide.  

The second, and often more fun, bucket includes all of the unexpected products, where you find things like LG's robotic pants and Segway roller shoes, but you also have to accept some frustration with all that novelty. Not all of these products will come to fruition, but they're interesting to check out. 

Flip through this gallery to have a look at all the cool stuff we've seen so far.  

Published:Caption:Photo:Andrew Hoyle/CNET
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Netgear Orbi Voice

Meet the Netgear Orbi Voice smart speaker with Harmon Kardon sound and which can also extend your Wi-Fi network. You do need an Orbi Mesh router though, but you can buy the two together for $430 or £430.

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Acer Predator Triton 900

The Acer Predator Triton 900 is a gaming laptop with a flip-over screen. Sadly it was only a stage demo and not on display on the IFA 2018 show floor. 

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LG CLOi SuitBot

The CLOi SuitBot is a robotic exoskeleton designed to "support and enhance a user's legs" designed for factory workers and other tasks that require heavy lifting

Published:Caption:Photo:Tyler Lizenby/CNETSee More
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Samsung Q900 8K TV

Samsung on Thursday showed off the Q900, which packs in more than 33 million pixels. The 85-inch TV will be the first 8K TV to hit the US market when it goes on sale in October, although Samsung didn't specify a price. Its archrival LG a day earlier announced what it called "the world's first" 8K OLED TV. LG showed the 88-inch device to some reporters in January at CES, but hasn't said when there would be an actual product for consumers.

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Asus ZenBook 13

The new ZenBook's slim frame packs Nvidia's discrete graphic and Intel's latest eighth-generation Core i7 processors.

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Lenovo Yoga Book C930

The second-gen Yoga Book replaces the second screen with an E Ink touchscreen. Lenovo says the matte surface is also better for typing on. The Yoga Book C930 will be offered in both Intel Core m5 and Core i5 versions, starting in October for $999 and up. 

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Eufy RoboVac 30C

The RoboVac 30C comes from Eufy -- a smart-home-centric offshoot of Anker. For $300, it offers automated cleaning that you can control and schedule from your phone thanks to the built-in Wi-Fi -- a first for the brand. On top of that, it works with both Alexa and Google Assistant, letting you tell either one to get the floors clean the next time you've got guests coming over. 

The RoboVac 30C  launches this September.

Published:Caption:Photo:Ry Crist/CNET
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ZTE Axon 9 Pro

Announced at the IFA 2018 conference in Berlin, ZTE's Axon 9 Pro is waterproof and has a 6.21-inch 1080p AMOLED display. The display has its own dedicated chip to process video, a feature ZTE brands as "Axon Vision." The technology not only boosts a video's color contrast, but it bumps up its frame rate to render smoother images.

Unfortunately, it won't be available in the US. Instead, the phone is coming to select countries in Europe and Asia. Though ZTE doesn't have exact pricing, the phone is anticipated to cost about 649 euros, which converts to about $760, £590 or AU$1,040.

Published:Caption:Photo:Angela Lang/CNET
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Casio WSD-F30 smartwatch

Casio's Pro Trek outdoors-focused smartwatch runs on Google's WearOS, and the company says it has improved the battery life, display features and app capabilities.

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Sony SRS-XB501G

Earlier this year Sony put out a voice-enabled Wi-Fi speaker, the LF-S50G, that looked similar to Apple's HomePod but didn't sound all that great and hasn't made much noise in the audio market. But Sony's new SRS-XB501G, due out in October for $300, seems to be a lot more promising product.

We got a chance to see and hear it in advance of its launch at the IFA trade show in Berlin and we were impressed by its design and its sound. It's both a Wi-Fi and Bluetooth speaker and has Google Assistant built in so you can issue voice commands. In some sense, it's like a more powerful UE Blast or Megablast, or a JBL Link 10 or Link 20

Published:Caption:Photo:David Carnoy/CNET
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Sony Xperia XZ3

Sony is one of those phonemakers that gets lost in the shadow of the iPhone and Galaxy phones. But its latest, the Xperia XZ3, wants to be in it to win it -- at least compared with the Galaxy S9.

The supersize, superpowered, superpricy handset comes in swinging, with specs you'd want to see on any high-end phone. You've got a 6-inch screen, a 19-megapixel camera setup (single lens, like the Galaxy S9), waterproofing and wireless charging, an amenity you don't often see outside Samsung phones. Google's latest OS, Android Pie, runs the software show, and the whole phone is backed by Qualcomm's brawny Snapdragon 845 chipset.

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Sony SRS-XB01 Bluetooth speaker

Typically Sony's entry-level mini Bluetooth speakers have started at $50. But the upcoming SRS-XB01, due out in October, lists for $35. That's pretty inexpensive.

It has a water resistant design with an IPX5 rating and its battery life is rated at 6 hours, which is fairly standard for this type of tiny Bluetooth speaker.

It is part of Sony's Extra Bass speaker line and also has a built-in microphone for hands-free calling and will come in four color options (blue, red, white and black).

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Sony WH-1000XM3 headphones

For the last few years, Sony's been hot on the heels of rival Bose, working hard to create the ultimate noise-canceling headphone. It may have finally done it with the WH-1000XM3, priced at $350, £330 or $AU499.

In developing this third-generation model, it seems as if Sony's engineers went through CNET's review of last year's WH-1000MX2 and corrected each small issue we had with it.

The biggest design change is to the shape of the headband and padding on the ear cups. The headband is now more contoured to your head and the headphone has shaved off 20 grams of weight. The padding on the ear cups is also a little softer. 

The end result is a headphone that's clearly more comfortable than its predecessor -- apologies to folks who recently bought the WH-1000MX2.

Published:Caption:Photo:David Carnoy/CNET

Huawei Magic 2

The Huawei Magic 2 is a phone that's all screen, with no notch or chin in sight. Its camera physically slides out to take photos.

Published:Caption:Photo:Rich Brown/CNET
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Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless

The Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless are due in November for $300 and promise "uncompromising sound performance" -- but only offer 4 hours of battery life.

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Garmin Vivosmart 4

At first glance, Garmin's new $130 Vivosmart 4 looks like your basic slim activity tracker. But there's a lot more to it than that.

Not only does the fully waterproof Vivosmart 4 have Garmin's redesigned Elevate heart-rate sensor, new abnormal heart-rate alerts, VO2 max, stress tracking and activities for walks, runs, strength training, pool swims, yoga and more, but it introduces a new wrist-based pulse ox sensor.

Published:Caption:Photo:David Carnoy/CNET
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HTC U12 Life

If the HTC U12 Plus was too gutsy for its own good. But the HTC U12 Life that the company debuted here in Berlin is so tame, it echoes a phone from 2017: the Pixel 2.

In the U12 Life, HTC backs away from the U12 Plus' squeezable side and static "buttons" that vibrate instead of pressing in. In its place, the U12 Life is all purple or blue eye-candy with a partial glass pane on the back that mimics the backing on Google's flagship phone of 2017. (The Pixel 3 is expected as soon as Oct. 9, by the way.) 

Published:Caption:Photo:Andrew Hoyle/CNET
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UE Boom bluetooth speaker

Ultimate Ears' Boom speakers have been among the most popular portable Bluetooth speakers and it's now onto its third generation with the arrival of the Boom 3 ($150, £130, $AU200) and Megaboom 3 ($200, £170, $AU300). 

Yes, they're the same cylindrical shape, but they've been redesigned, mostly for the better. The new fabric wrap is supposed to be more durable and the speaker is rated to withstand falls of up to a meter. They're also fully waterproof and even float if you happen to drop them in a body of water.  

Published:Caption:Photo:Joshua Goldman/CNET
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BlackBerry Key2 LE

It's been only two months since BlackBerry unveiled the Key2, but the veteran phone brand arrived on Thursday at IFA, Europe's largest tech show, with a new device to add to its lineup.

The Key2 LE is a lighter, brighter -- and cheaper -- version of BlackBerry's flagship device that sees the phone maker shake off its rather staid and sensible reputation and embrace color.

When the Key2 LE becomes available in the US, UK, Canada and other countries towards the end of September, it will start at $399 or £349 for the 32GB variant, and $449 or £399 for the 64GB model.  

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Dell Inspiron Chromebook 14 two-in-one

Dell chose IFA 2018 to release updates to its most mainstream-priced Inspiron line of laptops, along with its new 14-inch convertible Chromebook and a bright and sleek new display.  

Despite Dell's history for having small 11.6-inch Chromebooks and two-in-one Chromebooks for markets like education, this is the first of its "premium" Chromebooks -- a growing class of the Google Chrome OS-based laptops designed to look less rough-and-ready and more polished and upscale. 

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Huawei AI Cube

Here's how to make your Alexa smart speaker stand out -- call it a cube, and then don't actually make it one. Huawei's AI Cube packs in Alexa, a speaker and a 4G router. Good for an Airbnb perhaps? No pricing or availability is available yet.

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Dell S2719DC monitor

Dell also announced its first DisplayHDR 600-certified monitor, meaning it can hit 600 nits peak brightness (typical is around 250 to 300 nits) and cover 90 percent of the DCI-P3 gamut. That's notably brighter in general and gives better color reproduction in saturated greens and cyans than your typical monitor. But the S2719DC puts it in an ultrathin, sleek silver chassis and adds a USB-C/alt-Display port so that it can power your laptop while you're using it.   

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Acer Thronos gaming chair

The mighty Acer Thronos gaming chair can recline up to 140 degrees and holds three 27-inch gaming monitors. No word on pricing or availability yet.

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Acer Swift 5, the worlds lightest 15-inch laptop

The Swift 5's Full HD 1,920x1,080-pixel touchscreen includes bezels that measure 0.23 inches, so the screen takes up an impressive 87.6 percent of the lid.

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Acer Predator XB273K gaming monitor

This $1,300 gaming monitor has a 27-inch UHD (3,840x2,160 resolution) display, 144Hz refresh rate and Nvidia G-Sync. It will be available in North America, Europe, the Middle East and China in the fourth quarter of 2018.

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Harman Kardon Citation

Harman Kardon's Citation range of smart speakers features everything from the $200 One to the Tower stereo speakers for $2,500. The Citation range includes Google Assistant and Chromecast built-in for multiroom streaming.

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Diesel On Full Guard 2.5

The Diesel On Full Guard 2.5 smartwatch, announced at IFA and coming in October, adds heart rate, GPS, NFC payments, rapid charging and 3 ATM swim waterproofing, much like the just-announced Skagen Falster 2 (both Skagen and Diesel are under the larger umbrella of Fossil Group).  

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Bang & Olufsen BeoSound speakers

The upcoming BeoSound 1 and BeoSound 2 from Bang & Olufsen both look futuristic. The long cylindrical bodies rest on smaller bases just above your table, so from a certain angle, it looks like these smart speakers are hovering. On display at IFA in Berlin, both have Google Assistant built-in, so they'll offer the same wide breadth of features as the Google Home. Both speakers will be coming in October.

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Bang & Olufsen BeoSound Edge

The BeoSound Edge is roughly the size of a hula hoop and looks like a big hockey puck with a slick aluminum rim (B&O tells us the design was actually inspired by a UK pound coin). To crank the sound up, just gently roll the thing forward a few inches. A built-in gyroscope and accelerometer will translate that motion into an uptick in sound, while built-in springs will help gently guide it back to its centered position once you let go. 

Whether that's all insanely cool or just insane is up to you, but you can expect to spend an insane amount of money on the Edge when it arrives at the end of September. The price is set at $3,500. 

Published:Caption:Photo:Andrew Hoyle/CNET
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LG G7 One

LG's first Android One phone marries the G7 ThinQ flagship from earlier this year with Google's Android One operating system.

Originally designed to work on cheaper phones with more entry-level specs, Google quietly shifted the purpose of its Android One operating system. Think of it as the stock OS that will make your non-Pixel phone as Googley as possible.

LG hasn't said how much it'll cost or when it'll be out. 

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LG G7 Fit

LG also revealed an entry-level version of the G7, the G7 Fit, which looks like a variation of the G7 One: It has the lower-end Snapdragon 821 processor and rear camera, but will have a 64GB storage option in the future.

LG hasn't revealed pricing or availability.

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AEG MultiSpace Fridge

AEG's MultiSpace Fridge Freezer comes with two features of note. The first is a variety of removable "CustomFlex" storage bins that hang inside the door, letting you store ingredients for a quick salad or for your next taco night. But the second is a removable lazy susan-style accessory that lets you spin the fridge shelf, moving items in the back up to the front for easier access.

AEG doesn't sell refrigerators in the US, but its parent company, the Swedish retailer Electrolux, does. It remains to be seen if we'll see the Multispace Fridge Freezer in the states, but it's within the realm of possibility. 

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Marshall smart speakers

Marshall has unveiled two smart speakers with both Alexa and Google Assistant on board at IFA 2018. The Acton II ($300) and the bigger Stanmore II Voice ($400) will go on sale in October. 

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Eve Power Strip

This smart power strip has three connected outlets you can control with an app or with Apple's digital assistant, Siri.

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Haier InstaSwitch Smart Freezer

Haier's InstaSwitch Smart Freezer can become a fridge for the times when you need more storage space.

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AEG ComfortLift dishwasher

AEG's ComfortLift dishwasher that lets you clean your dishes with the use of an ecofriendly Quick Slider.

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Eve Room 2

The Eve Room 2 is a HomeKit-compatible sensor that measures air quality, temperature and humidity.

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LG Signature Wine Cellar

This super fancy wine fridge can hold 65 bottles, and you can set different areas to different temperatures to properly store a variety of wines. 

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Miele G7000 dishwasher

The Miele G7000 dishwasher includes a PowerDisk puck for distributing dishwashing liquid.

Published:Caption:Photo:Ashlee Clark Thompson/CNET
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Skagen Falster 2

Skagen's new Falster 2 Wear OS smartwatch adds heart rate, GPS, swim-readiness and NFC Google Pay.

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Intel mobile processors

Intel has announced six new eighth Gen Core-m and Core-i CPUs, which will let newer laptops run for up to 16 hours. 

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