CES gadgets you can actually buy this year

CES 2015 isn't just about concepts and far-off visions of a tech future, here are the products you can actually purchase this year.

Jason Parker
Jason Parker has been at CNET for nearly 15 years. He is the senior editor in charge of iOS software and has become an expert reviewer of the software that runs on each new Apple device. He now spends most of his time covering Apple iOS releases and third-party apps.
Jason Parker
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Withings Activite Pop

The new Withings Activite Pop, announced at CES 2015 in Las Vegas, is a follow-up to the Activite released last year. Like the first watch, The Activite Pop is a high-end fashion experiment. But while the Pop offers the same functions it only costs $150, where the original costs $450

Available in the US now (at Best Buy online, in limited quantities, according to Withings), the Pop could be perfectly priced. UK and Australian prices weren't available at time of writing, but the US price converts to around £100 or AU$185.

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The Guess Connect

Regular watches getting smarter are a big part of this year's CES: first the Withings Activite Pop, and now Martian's updated lineup of watches. The Martian Notifier, which launched last year, has grown into four new models plus the Guess Connect.

Of the several style variants announced, they all basically work the same: charging via USB, several days of battery life, a small OLED banner display on the bottom for messages. Vibrations can be customized in a variety of ways for various different types of phone notifications. A built-in microphone can work with voice commands, both on Google Voice and Siri.

Martian's latest watches will be available by summer, and work with both iOS and Android.

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The LulzBot Mini 3D printer

The all-new LulzBot Mini 3D Printer from Aleph Objects claims to be one of the most open 3D printers on the market. Unlike other 3D printers that include certain proprietary aspects, the LulzBot Mini was developed through a publicly accessible archive that includes specifications, schematics, parts, suppliers, prototypes and more.

The LulzBot Mini 3D Printer is slated to ship later this month at the cost of $1,350. Pricing for the UK and Australia is not yet available but that converts to around £885 and AU$1,670.

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The Alienware 15

The new Alienware 15 weighs in at 7.07 pounds, which paradoxically makes it the lightest 15-inch Alienware notebook ever. An aluminum chassis coupled with "carbon-fiber-filled materials" also lends the machine some sturdiness without packing on additional heft -- it's 1.3 inches thick, thinner than any of Alienware's previous 14- or 15-inch options.

Of course you're likely here to learn what's inside the beast. You can chose between discrete AMD Radeon and Nvidia GeForce GPUs, paired with a fourth-generation Intel Core i5 or Core i7 processor. The power-saving fifth-generation Broadwell processors might be all the rage here at CES, but we're unlikely to see much of a performance bump there until quad-core models are available later this year, so the part makes sense here. You can also outfit it with up to 16GB of RAM.

The Alienware 15 is available in the US today, and starts at $1,199. International pricing and availability has not yet been announced.

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Cintiq Companion 2

Upping the resolution to Quad HD (2,560x1,440 pixels) is only one of the enhancements that Wacom has made to its next generation of Cintiq pressure-sensitive pen display products.

The Cintiq Companion 2 can operate either as a standalone Windows 8 tablet or as a secondary display connected to a computer.

Wacom also unveiled the Cintiq 27QHD and the multitouch-enabled 27QHD touch, redesigned 27-inch versions of the 24-inch pressure-sensitive displays that they replace -- at lower prices, to boot.

The displays are expected to begin shipping at the end of January; the 27QHD will run $2,300 (£1,800; directly converted, AU$2,847) and the touch version $2,800 (£2,100; directly converted, AU$3,740).

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Two new Fitbit devices

Fitbit announced it has started shipping two new wrist wearables that could fit all your wearable needs.

The two devices, called the Fitbit Charge HR and Fitbit Surge, provide caller ID, sleep monitoring and heart monitoring, and show time of day. The Charge HR, an updated version of its Charge wristband, includes continuous 24-hour heart-rate monitoring. The Surge, Fitbit's first device in the smartwatch category, adds GPS, text messaging notification and music control.

The Charge HR costs $150 in the US (£120 in the UK and $180 in Australia), and the Surge smartwatch costs $250 in the US (£200 in the UK and $300 in Australia).

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New Soundwall canvases combine a unique visual and audio experience that's geared towards art and music aficionados.

Soundwall art pieces have hidden built-in speakers behind the canvas that have Wi-Fi capabilities. The art selection varies from original pieces to historic photographs, and each one includes unique audio additions from the artist themselves.

Like most high-end art, Soundwall pieces don't come cheap -- prices on the current available canvases range from $3,500 to $6,000 (roughly £2,300 to £3,940, or AU$4,300 to AU$7,400).

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The Petcube

The Petcube is like a baby monitor for your pets -- but better. The device has a built-in camera, a laser, and a speaker for engaging your pets in a variety of ways while you're out of the house.

The device live-streams video of the room it's in. Its wide-angle camera aptly captures an entire room and it streams in 720p HD. When streaming video, if you interact with the touchscreen of your smartphone, the built-in laser is activated and you can play with your pets as they follow the light around. If your pet is getting into mischief, the app also allows you to talk to them through the cube and tell them to cut it out.

The Petcube is $199 (which converts roughly to £130 and AU$245) and is available on its website, Amazon and Fab.com.

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The new Pacif-i looks like a regular pacifier, but is actually a smart device for infants and toddlers that measures a baby's temperature and transmits that data to a connected app for Android or iPhone using Bluetooth Low Energy.

In the app, parents can add medication information such as type, dosage and when the medication was last given. The Pacif-i also has a built-in tracker, so you'll hopefully never lose it.

The makers of the device, BlueMaestro, plan to release the Pacif-i across Europe once it's gotten the European Medical Device Class IIa license, which is expected in February 2015. From there, Pacifi-i hopes to get the right approvals so it can launch in the United States, Australia and other locations sometime this year.

The Pacif-i will cost $40/£25/AU$47, and if you just have to have a connected baby as soon as possible, you can pre-order the Pacif-i on the company's site.

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Panasonic HC-WX970

Panasonic's introduction of 7 to 11 camcorders at CES was pretty impressive.

Seven of the models will be available in the US, while four other models will also appear in other regions.

At the top of its consumer line now sits the Panasonic WX970, the company's first consumer 4K -- UHD, 2160/30p -- model, tentatively priced at $1,000 (about £650 and AU$1,240 directly converted).

Panasonic adds an interesting new feature to several of the $600-plus models: HDR Movie. Similar to multiple-exposure HDR stills, HDR Movie simultaneously records two exposures at different shutter speeds, then merges them with optimized highlight and shadow areas.

All of Panasonic's new camcorders are scheduled to ship in late February/early March.

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This helmet-like wearable from myBrain making its debut at CES measures your brain waves and uses music and meditation to help you mellow out.

Called the Melomind, the device has electrodes on each of the four spikes that protrude from the core device. These electrodes measure your brain waves like a standard electroencephalogram (EEG) would, and transmit data on your brain activity to the connected app. The app, which will be available for Android, iOS and Windows Phone when the device launches sometime late this year, then uses that data to determine which of its custom-created musical tones to play to help you relax.

The Melomind is expected to be released in select US and European retailers by the end of 2015, but if you're completely convinced you need this helmet-like wearable, you can preorder it on the Melomind website for $299 (about £195 or AU$365).

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TrackR Bravo

Forgetful folks rejoice! The new TrackR Bravo helps locate your missing items with an easy-to-use iOS and Android app.

Starting at only $29, the small tracking device attaches to your keys, purse, computer or even pet. The small hole at the top of the TrackR Bravo allows you to insert a keyring or string, but you can also stick it onto an item using an included adhesive sticker.

At 3.5mm thin, it's as small as a tasteful souvenir keychain, and its sturdy aluminum exterior helps keep it protected. Available in a variety of colors (custom engraving is available), the devices are expected to ship in February.

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MyFox security system

At CES 2015, European home security company MyFox debuted a brand-new security system specifically for the US. The focus of its offerings: DIY simplicity, privacy and prevention.

Many DIY systems, including the well-rounded offerings of SmartThings, include door and window sensors that can alert you when the entrance to your home is ajar. The MyFox sensors do that but go a step further and sense vibrations as well. Should a crook attempt a forceful entry, MyFox will sense it and sound an alarm.

The camera will cost $200 and be released sometime in Q2 of 2015, along with a separate security kit for $300 that includes those vibration-detecting sensors.

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The new SnapCam is far smaller and lighter than previous versions, measuring 1.5 inches (3.8cm) square and weighs a little more than an ounce. With just a swipe on the body, the camera kicks on and with a single tap it captures an 8-megapixel photo. Tap it twice and it starts recording 720p HD video at 30 frames per second and another tap stops it. A triple tap starts it live-streaming video using its built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.

The SnapCam is expected to ship in the second quarter of 2015 in gunmetal gray, black or white for about $150. A version without wireless -- SnapCam Lite -- will be available, too, for around $80.

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Misfit Swarovski Shine

There have been plenty of recent attempts at meshing wearable tech and jewelry.

At CES 2015, the Misfit Swarovski Shine, a line of crystal-bejeweled fitness trackers announced at CES in Las Vegas, takes everything up another level. Thanks to a partnership with Swarovski, these trackers cross the line into true jewelry. Two versions will offer either a clear or violet crystal. It's the violet one you want, because that one's solar-powered -- it shouldn't ever need to be charged at all.

Under the hood, these new blinged-out Shines work the same way as the old ones: step tracking, automatic sleep tracking and general fitness activity via accelerometer.

The solar-powered version won't be in stores until June this year; meanwhile, the clear crystal version of Swarovski Shine will be available in March.

There will be a total of nine Swarovski accessories -- including the Vio Pendant, Piofiori Band and the pictured Slake Bracelet, which will cost anywhere from $70 to $150 and work with both the Swarovski Shine and original Misfit Shine.

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The Ring

Waggle your finger in the air, turn off the lights. Squiggle a shape, tweet a photo. If you've ever fantasized about controlling your life with your magic finger, the Ring is here.

Actually, the Ring already arrived back in October, off a Kickstarter campaign. That metal version is sold out, but this new and improved black plastic model is coming this March, for an undetermined price that will, according to Logbar, probably be close to $130.

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Poloroid Zip

The Polaroid Zip is a small box about the size of a large smartphone, weighing 186 grams (6.6 ounces) and it' s just less than an inch thick. And it's a photo printer.

Similar to the Fujifilm Instax Share SP-1, the Zip connects to your iOS or Android device via Bluetooth and using a free app, you can take photos you shot with your phone and create small, 2x3-inch prints. The app has several editing options like adding filters, frames, stamps and stickers, but you can also make business cards or even make edits private so they can only be viewed by scanning a QR code printed on the original image.

The Polaroid Zip mobile printer will be available this spring for about $130. Australian and UK pricing was not available, but the price converts to roughly AU$160 and £85.

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Panasonic Lumix CM1

The new Panasonic Lumix CM1 is best thought of as a high-quality compact camera with a top-end phone squashed into it. Its metal and leather-effect rubber body houses a huge 1-inch sensor that delivers 20-megapixel shots in JPEG and raw, it uses a 28mm Leica lens and offers full manual control of settings.

That's a potent lineup of kit all round, so it's perhaps no surprise that it comes with an eye-watering price tag. At its press conference at CES, Panasonic announced it would go on sale in the US for $999.

It's available now in the UK for £799, and in Australia, the UK price would convert to roughly AU$1,500.

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Parrot RNB 6

The dashboard is getting smarter, and smartphones are playing a huge part of making it happen. At this point, most manufacturers have pledged support for either Apple's CarPlay or Google's Android Auto, two systems that will bring the power of their mobile operating systems to the dashboard, but do it in a safe way that won't be too distracting.

But, if you have an older car, your options have been few. Pioneer's NEX line has added CarPlay, but now Parrot is getting in on the game too, adding support for both Apple's and Google's solutions to its upcoming Parrot RNB 6 head unit.

The RNB 6 is a double-DIN device with 55 watts per four channel output and niceties like a 7-inch HD display with capacitive touch and HDMI input for external video. There's also internal storage for audio or video, inputs for satellite radio and, yes, FM/AM support.

Parrot wouldn't say at CES how much the new unit will cost, but it will ship sometime in the second half of 2015

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Dell XPS 13

The first thing you'll notice about the Dell XPS 13 is the screen. It's at once small, and not: the 13-inch, 3,200x1,800 quad-HD display is tucked into a body that's almost too compact to contain it. Dell claims it's the smallest 13-inch laptop on the planet, and explains that its diminutive size is the product of lots of research and engineering wizardry -- much is explained by the nigh-invisible 5.2mm bezel that borders the screen.

So who's the XPS 13's target audience? Starting at $799, it's far pricier than something like the $250 Toshiba Chromebook 2, but well equipped to give pause to someone who might be considering a MacBook Air. And Dell isn't shy about admitting that the company is aiming directly at consumers who might be tempted by Apple's wares.

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Sling TV

Fewer people -- and particularly fewer young people -- want to pay for cable or satellite TV service. So Dish Network, which has been gradually shedding subscribers, is trying something a little different to acquire new customers: It's launching Sling TV, a cheaper Over-the-Top (OTT) Internet TV service, which starts at $20 and includes a slate of Disney and Turner Networks channels, among others.

The service is scheduled to be available in the coming weeks -- no exact launch date was given -- on an impressive array of Internet-connected devices, including Xbox One , Roku media streamers, PCs, Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick, and iOS and Android smartphones and tablets.

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