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New laptops, TVs and smart speakers are the usual suspects at CES 2024, the largest consumer electronics show in the world. But this year’s show also underscores how people are increasingly craving more niche devices, our longing for the past and the ways that AI — especially in the form of ChatGPT and similar generative AI chatbots — is becoming more integrated into our lives.

Here’s what’s captivating us at CES 2024. We’ll bring you more news on the best tech highlights we come across.

Forget a projector, get a huge TCL instead

The TCL 115-inch TV on a stand. The TCL 115-inch TV on a stand.

The TCL 115QM891G is a 115-inch TV that’s 8.5 feet wide and around 6 feet tall on its stand.

David Katzmaier/CNET

CNET’s projector reviewer Geoff Morrison has been extolling the benefits of projectors for many years, but even he has come around to technologies like OLED and Mini-LED of late. What would he think of the new TCL 115QM891G? This is a 115-inch 4K LCD TV that’s up to five times brighter than most TVs, and with better blacks too, according to TV reviewer David Katzmaier.  

As TV reviewers ourselves we’ve seen large TVs, but in the old days they were stuck at HD. The pixels on Panasonic’s 103-inch 1080p, for instance, were huge and easily noticeable. This is why 4K technology is so great — it means you can install a TV as big as a wall, and not see black lines between the pixels. The TCL also going to be a lot cheaper than that $100,000 Panasonic too, at under $20,000.

screenshot-2024-01-08-at-15-35-59.png screenshot-2024-01-08-at-15-35-59.png Watch this: This 115-inch TCL TV Makes Your Screen Seem Tiny 03:30

Stained glass gets a new lease on lifelong power 

A crystal made of glass that can capture solar energy. A crystal made of glass that can capture solar energy.

Think you know what solar panels look like? This thing is capturing the energy of light.

Jon Reed/CNET

Solar panels are great — they produce electricity from one of the most abundant resources we have, and they pay for themselves in quick order — but no one has ever called them pretty. Fear not! Japanese company inQs has worked out a way to make solar cells out of colored glass.  The company is exhibiting a number of objects at CES 2024, including a stained glass pane that generates electricity. The devices are small, and one was able to power only a desk fan, but we like how they point to a rethink of how solar panels should look and work. 

Disguising weird-looking things has been a perpetual trend at CES, as with LG’s ArtCool air conditioners. And this year the Samsung Music Frame lets users put art inside a smart speaker.

Hey, Ida, which is better: Alexa or Siri?

Volkswagen ID Buzz three-row EV Volkswagen ID Buzz three-row EV Antuan Goodwin/CNET

AI is already everywhere here at CES 2024 — and adding to the list of products it’ll be appearing in is cars. Volkswagen has announced a deal with ChatGPT that enables users to ask all sorts of questions of their car, in the same way they would of a traditional digital assistant. At the moment, VW’s voice assistant lets users say, “Hey, Ida” to ask a question about something basic, like requesting tire pressure. But the automaker’s cars are incapable of answering more-advanced questions like, “When did the New York Jets last win the Super Bowl?” Under the new deal, if the car’s assistant can’t answer the question, then it’ll hand off the query to ChatGPT. (Yes, the Jets did win one. But it was a very, very long time ago.)

It’s worth noting that competitors like Alexa, Google Assistant and Siri have been completing these queries natively for many years, so teaming with ChatGPT is an easier way for VW’s Ida to catch up.

Must see-through TV

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This transparent display, currently showing fish, can transform into a 77-inch TV.

Tara Brown/CNET

TVs are getting bigger every year, which means there’s a bigger slab of black plastic taking up a significant port of the living room wall when it’s not in use. But what if we could make it disappear, without actually pulling it off the wall?

LG has apparently done just that with a transparent OLED screen that converts from a “fish tank” to a 77-inch television (pictured above). Unlike Samsung’s competing technology this will apparently be a real product, shipping later in 2024.

Meanwhile Samsung is showing off the first transparent version of its Micro-LED display tech at CES 2024. While transparent OLED and even LCD-based screens have been around for a while, Ssmsung says its Micro-LED display technology produces brighter, clearer images and is more transparent than the going tech. But Samsung says its transparent Micro-LED tech isn’t available in the market, so what Katzmaier saw (or didn’t see?) is essentially a concept. 

A 2-minute ice cream maker

Ice cream maker Ice cream maker

We scream for ice cream.

David Watsky//CNET

Coming soon to a restaurant near you: freshly made ice cream, ready from start to finish in just 2 minutes. 

We’ve loved trying the vanilla ice cream churned out by the speedy ColdSnap — first in 2021 and then again this year. Unfortunately, we’re still a year away from being able to buy one of these innovative ice cream makers for our homes, but the company came to CES this year with the news that its restaurant partners will have hold of the machines much sooner.

The countertop ice cream maker uses pods to make a bowl of the cold stuff in less than two minutes. The finished result has a gelato-like consistency that had us coming back for more every time we passed the ColdSnap booth.

screenshot-2024-01-08-at-15-00-39.png screenshot-2024-01-08-at-15-00-39.png Watch this: ColdSnap Makes Flavored Ice Cream in Minutes 03:55

Robot stain fighter

bespoke jet bot combo bespoke jet bot combo

Samsung is set to unveil the intelligent home helper this week at CES in Las Vegas.


We’ll kick things off with a product sure to clean up — literally. The new Bespoke Jet Bot AI Plus smart robot vacuum does more than just sweep up dust bunnies and dog hair; it’s designed to roam your rooms scouting for stains as they happen and scrub them out so you don’t have to.

And as the name suggests, the robot taps AI-powered object recognition to identify stains on rugs, carpets and hard flooring. And yes, it can tell the difference between the surfaces, presumably making adjustments to its clean technique accordingly. You can also tell this $1,000-plus household helper where it can and can’t go as it attacks stains as bad puppy piddle or a zinfandel spill with a spinning mop that hits 170 rpm.

Teeth tech

The Oclean X Ultra Wi-Fi Digital Toothbrush with extra heads and charger The Oclean X Ultra Wi-Fi Digital Toothbrush with extra heads and charger Oclean

AI isn’t just helping keep your floors clean, it’s also being used to make sure your teeth are as clean as they can be. The Oclean X Ultra Wi-Fi Digital Toothbrush features an algorithm-controlled motor, five brush modes tailored to specific needs, an interactive touchscreen that shows you areas you missed and an AI voice guide to help you improve your technique.

It also features Wi-Fi connectivity so you can pair it with your home network, and it will store information about your brushing history until you can download it to your app. It also offers 40 days of battery life through wireless charging. It will go sale in the US in the fall for $130. (International prices weren’t immediately available, but that converts to roughly £100 or AU$190.)

What’s old is new

A person hands their iPhone to another to hold -- the phone is wrapped in the Clicks case-and-keyboard, which is bright yellow with stylish black keys. A person hands their iPhone to another to hold -- the phone is wrapped in the Clicks case-and-keyboard, which is bright yellow with stylish black keys. Clicks

If you consider yourself an old-school smartphone user, you may yearn for the physical keyboards that used to accompany phones of yesteryear. The iPhone’s on-screen keyboard ushered out the full physical keyboards that were popular on BlackBerry devices.

The Clicks keyboard, from Clicks Technology, will transform your iPhone 14 Pro or iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max, adding a keyboard that’s actually integrated into a wraparound case. This $139 wraparound slides onto your device and runs off the phone’s battery, so no charging required.

It’s all in the wristwatch remote

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What if your smartwatch could also control your lamps, your Netflix programs and more?

Nick Wolny/CNET

Imagine using your wrist to control everything around you. A flick this way, and you can turn off the lights or scroll through the offerings on Netflix. Finnish startup Doublepoint has developed software that can turn an Android watch into a general-purpose controller for any device via a Bluetooth connection.

The software will come to developers in the first half of this year, but it’s up to developers and app-makers to decide what a small gesture, such as tapping fingers or rotating your wrist, will actually do.

240107-site-lg-tv-oled-t-first-look-v2 240107-site-lg-tv-oled-t-first-look-v2 Watch this: LG Transparent OLED Turns From TV Into Animated Art 03:04

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