With the big tech brands vying to take the No. 1 spot in the TV race, CES 2016 has shown off a huge range of curved screens, massive panels and ultraclear high-definition displays.
But away from the main stage floor, one Japanese brand was showing off the future of home entertainment, and there wasn't a screen in sight.
Meet Tipron -- the servile little robot that is set to change the way we structure our entertainment time in the future.
Designed by Japanese company Cerevo, the Tipron is a compact unit that folds up to be about the size of a vacuum cleaner. But wake it up with a smartphone app and Tipron lifts up its head and projects onto any wall of your home.
Tipron is just one of the many examples of futuristic robotics at CES 2016 that we can actually see being integrated into everyday life. While you mightn't see one in every home by year's end, it's a clever idea and certainly the kind of robot with useful applications that take it beyond being just a proof of concept.
Rather than just working as a standard projector, the real utility of the Tipron is that it can be directed to move around the house with the swipe of a finger on your smartphone. Want to watch a cooking show in the kitchen? Bring the Tipron in from the living room to create a new entertainment space. Want a movie in bed? Send the robot off to get set up in your bedroom while you brush your teeth.
While the 250-lumen projector had to work hard to stand out under the show floor lights, the display looked bright and certainly good enough for at-home use. Initially, I'd assumed it was a conferencing tool for the workplace, but the team at Cerevo assured me the main aim for the Tipron is to get it into homes as an entertainment device. Stream movies via Wi-Fi, plug a Chromecast in the back, or load it up with your own content, and you have a screen for any room or wall of the house.
And this is what really speaks to the magic of CES. While the big AV brands dedicated massive square-footage to curved TV screens and 4K OLED displays, the tide could already be changing.
One little brand in the back of Tech West's hall of startups and relatively unknown brands could be showing us the real future of entertainment: why sit around the TV when your entertainment can come to you?
Check out the rest of CNET's CES 2016 coverage here.
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