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CES Unveiled, From Sleep Kit, To Lenovo Voice To A DJI Stabiliser

CES Unveiled is where a lot of start-up Companies show their products alongside some big brands,and this years event had it all, from the disc that you slip under your bed and then hook up to an app, to a smart bed that they claim you sleep better in to the new Linksys routers that look like cheap white plastic boxes to a new voice controller from Lenovo.

There was even a new range of award winning Lenovo notebooks as well as a $250 DJI steady cam that’s designed to let one shoot videos with a smartphone.DJI

In Australia Lenovo, could well beat Amazon to the punch with their all new “Smart Assistant”.

In the USA Amazon’s Echo is the current standard for smart home.

Now the new Lenovo product is set to take Amazon on with a product that has incorporates Alexa technology.

Modelled as a tall cylindrical device, like the Amazon the top half is white, with a silver 360-degree microphone-speaker combo on top. The bottom half feels more like the Google Home device, with a grey, green or orange woven overlay for a splash of colour. Inside is an Intel Celeron N3060 processor, and one 5-watt tweeter and one 10-watt woofer for audio.Lenovo
It looks like an Echo, it uses Alexa, it uses the official Alexa phone app, and works with the same wide range of third-party smart home devices.

The device is set to go on sale in Australia for around $250.

One product that I was impressed with as CES Unveiled was DJI’s Osmo Mobile. The company showed off a silver model (with white accents) that will be available in Australia in the second quarter.

The device is a three-axis motorized gimbal with an adjustable phone mount. The gimbal uses its motors to counteract any shake or movement to keep all your shots steady — whether you’re standing still, riding in a car or chasing your kid down the sideline.

The stabilization in and of itself doesn’t make the Osmo stand out from other phone gimbals. What makes the Osmo Mobile different is the DJI Go mobile app. Once you connect your phone to the Osmo via Bluetooth, the app gives you full control over the camera and a couple extras to take advantage of the stabilizer.

One of those is ActiveTrack, a feature borrowed from DJI’s drones, which lets you follow a subject simply by drawing a box around it with your finger. Once it locks on, the gimbal will pan and tilt automatically to keep the subject in your shot.
To complement this, DJI is has also added a “Studio Mode” to the Osmo Mobile’s companion app, DJI Go. These features are designed to give your selfies a boost, by smoothing out your skin tones and making your face look smaller or thinner. Yup, just what we needed.
One product that I was not impressed with was the new Linksys Velop Whole Home W-Fi mesh networking kit.

Linksys is definitely late to the mesh party, and their new products looks and feels very cheap.Linksys

In the current market, Netgear’s Orbi is undoubtedly one of the leading ‘mesh’ solutions. By placing a dedicated backhaul radio (4×4 802.11ac), and restricting the arrangement of the primary router and satellites to a star topology, Orbi provided excellent performance numbers. The adoption of Qualcomm Atheros’s Wi-Fi SON firmware features also enabled a good user experience.Linksys 2

Linksys adopts a similar platform on the software side as well as high-level operation (one channel for backhaul and another for client communication).

On the hardware side, the main SoC is still the Qualcomm Atheros IPQ 4019. However, instead of having a 4×4 802.11ac backhaul radio using the QCA9984 like the Orbi, Linksys has opted to use the cheap bottom end 2×2 802.11ac QCA9886 radio.

After seeing and playing with both products the Orbi looks far superior to the Linksys offering.

More to follow.

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