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Jason Fitzpatrick is the Editor in Chief of LifeSavvy. He has over a decade of experience in publishing and has authored thousands of articles at LifeSavvy, Review Geek, How-To Geek, and Lifehacker. Read more…
For most folks, the highlight of the holiday season is Christmas where they can unpack new and exciting gifts. For folks like us, Christmas comes a bit later at CES where we get to preview new, exotic, and exciting products. Here are our favorites from CES 2022!
If you’re not tuned into the technology world like it’s a spectator sport, we can forgive you for not knowing about CES. It’s the Consumer Electronics Show and it’s been an international conference staple in the industry for over fifty years. Companies and organizations from around the globe make an annual pilgrimage to Las Vegas to show off everything from computers to kitchen gadgets and everything in between.
But enough about the history of the show, you’re not here for that. You’re here to see what fun and shiny new things are around the corner. So let’s dig in! Below are LifeSavvy’s top picks in a wide variety of categories both inside and outside the home.
Best Work from Home Accessory: Anker B600 Video Bar
Best Smart Home: Schlage Encode Plus
Best Air Filter: LG PuriCare AeroTower
Best Home Sensor: Airthings The View Plus
Best Smart Kitchen Upgrade: Moen Smart Faucet with Motion Control
Best Smart Mattress: Sleep Number 360
Best Sleep Accessory: Dock Pro + Chilipad Pro Sleep System
Best Smart Baby Accessory: Babysense Cloud
Best Smart Pet Accessory: Invoxia Smart Dog Collar
Best Wellness: Morphée Zen
Best Wearable: Movano Ring
Best Fitness: Withings Body Scan
Best iPhone Accessory: Chipolo Card Spot
Best Oral Care Product: Oral-B iO
Best Beauty Care: L’Oreal ColorSonic
Best Vacuum: Ecovacs Deebot X1 Omni
Best Smart Light: Sengled Wi-Fi Video-Sync TV Light Strips
Best Lawn and Garden: BirdBuddy Smart Feeder
Best Home Theater: Samsung Freestyle Projector
Best Small Appliance: Daan Tech Bob Dishwasher
Best Photography: AirSelfie Air NEO
What better way to open our 2022 awards than to talk about something so many of us need? Work from home office upgrades.
Anker, tuned into the pandemic-in-progress world we’re living in, released a new product at this year’s CES, the B600 Video Bar. It’s a virtual Swiss Army knife of video conferencing tools, combining a high-quality speaker, a crisp video camera that can push 2K resolution at 30FPS, a four-microphone array designed to cut down on background noise and, to round out the feature package, a large lighting bar across the top.
All of the features are integrated together for optimum performance so, for example, the light bar will automatically adjust along with the camera itself to deliver optimal lighting. The $220 price point is a bit steep as far as your average webcam goes, but pretty reasonable when you consider that the AnkerWork is multiple video conferencing tools in one. If you hit up the Anker website before January 25, by the way, you can spend $1 to get on the early-bird purchase list and get $35 off the B600 when it’s released at the end of January. Not a bad deal if you’re looking to upgrade your webcam for 2022.
Picking a smart home product in the very flooded smart home market is tough. (Especially when we’re all big smart home fans and love so much of the tech that comes before us every year.) But this year there’s a strong stand out for a simple reason. The Schlage Encode Plus is the first smart door lock on the market that supports the Apple “home keys” system—previously the technology was only available in select Hyatt hotels.
What does that mean in practical terms for you, the consumer? It means that you can finally realize the dream of using your iPhone and/or Apple Watch as a smart key. While the pad supports regular PIN entry and a physical key, you can save the PIN for guests and enjoy opening your door with your watch like the citizen of the future you are.
If ever there was a perfect time to release a really nice air filter, this is it. We’re all hyper-conscious of air quality both in terms of health and just general comfort—lots of folks just spent a year or more working from home and “crisp fresh air that doesn’t smell like the dog” is high on their work-from-home wishlists.
Enter the LG PuriCare AeroTower. It’s tall, stately, vaguely resembles the Eye of Sauron, and it’s going to filter the hell out of the air in your home. It sports a True HEPA filter that captures 99.97% of the fine dust and allergens in your home and it has a UV system to actively destroy bacteria and viruses in the air. Not only does it filter and destroy, it also monitors air quality—users can pair the filter with the LG ThinQ app to monitor how well their filter is working and what their air quality looks like.
For people who like the idea of an air filter in their home but hate the idea of listening to a wind-tunnel like turbine blowing 24/7, the AeroTower offers three modes—direct, wide, and diffusion—as well as ten levels of intensity for the modes. All of which allows you to dial in the exact amount of air movement (and noise!) you want.
Interest in home sensors and monitoring of all kinds has only gone up over time and the pandemic has accelerated people’s interest in keeping an eye on their home—especially on the air quality.
How do you know what good air quality even is or if you have it? Airthings, a company with a long history of air quality monitoring has a solution for you: The View Plus. It’s a pill-shaped monitor that resembles a thermostat you can either mount on the wall or set on a table or shelf. The device continuously monitors the air quality in your home for particulates in the PM 1.0 to 2.5 range (which is the particulate range most associated with health problems) as well as a host of other air-quality variables like temperature, humidity, radon, and carbon dioxide concentrations.
If you often feel sleepy while at home, by the way, that last one should be of particular interest to you. Elevated carbon dioxide levels are a common cause of headaches and drowsiness. A good monitor can let you know when it’s time to crack a window.
When it comes to smart kitchen upgrades we’ll be the first to admit the market is kind of a weird one and there are a lot of products with questionable”Why would I need this?” features like smart ovens with apps that have you scan the barcode of a box of lasagna to automatically set the temperature.
In a field with a lot of “What’s the point?” products, the Moen Smart Faucet with motion controls actually has features we find interesting and useful. You can start the flow of water and even adjust the temperature with simple hand motions (and our field test of the product at CES showed it actually worked as expected!) which is pretty neat. Not only that it has a smart feature that’s actually practical: it has a built-in water metering so you can tell it, via smart home connectivity, to output X amount of water—such as filling a cooking pot with 5 cups of water. You can even configure presets like “dog dish” or “watering can” based on the volume of water you need for personal items in your home.
This year Sleep Number unveiled the latest iteration of their smart bed platform, the Sleep Number 360 and, let us tell you, the list of features packed into this mattress is pretty impressive.
The bed is, well, first and foremost a bed. But it’s a bed that actively tracks and monitors a wide range of variables to how you sleep including movement, temperature, sound, heart rate, and even your weight—critically, acts on them. If the bed detects snoring or breathing irregularities, it will raise the head of the bed slightly to help open your airway for more comfortable breathing. If you’re too hot or too cold it will make adjustments for more comfortable sleep.
Currently, the product is not FDA approved for the diagnosis or treatment of any particular disorder—although the app will alert you if it notices any abnormalities so you can talk to your doctor—but the company notes that in the future the Sleep Number 360 bed could be used for such purposes as the sensors and software are well suited for detecting specific sleep abnormalities. The Sleep Number 360 mattress starts at $1,099 for the mattress with additional purchase required for the adjustable base.
If the idea of a smart bed with a microclimate appeals to you but you don’t want to completely replace your bed to get it, then the Dock Pro + Chilipad Pro Sleep System is worth your serious consideration.
The platform combines three elements to significantly enhance the comfort and quality of your sleep: a mattress pad that is capable of both cooling and warming your body (it’s connected to a radiator-like unit you park under your bed), an ultra-thin sensor pad you place under the pad that can detect things like tossing and turning, heart rate, breathing rate, and more.
That data isn’t just collected to give you a sleep score (and potentially stress you out with information you can’t act on) but is instead used to automatically adjust the temperature of the bed to facilitate better sleep. If the system notices that a dip (or rise) in temperature corresponds to a disruption of REM sleep, for example, it will learn from that and adjust the temperature to help you sleep more deeply. The platform starts at $1,299.
Lest you think we left the baby out in the cold when it comes to the smart home sleep experience, allow us to introduce the Babysense Cloud. The Cloud is a crib mattress combined with a variety of sensors and integrations.
The mattress detects your baby’s body temperature, how often they are moving, how long they’ve been sleeping, monitors the air quality in the room, compiles all this data into a handy dashboard to give you insights into how your baby is sleeping, and most critically, alerts you if there are any abnormalities detected.
In addition, the platform integrates with existing Babysense baby monitors so you can not only use the same app to check your baby’s sleep stats but also peek in on them with the camera too.
If you’re sitting there thinking “Well that smart baby mattress sounds pretty neat but I don’t have a baby, I have a dog I love like a baby” then we have good news. At CES this year Invoxia showed off the Apple Watch equivalent of a dog collar, the Invoxia Smart Dog Collar.
It doesn’t just tell you where your dog is but tracks their exercise and vital stats (like heart rate) too. You’ll get insights into everything from their cardio health to how often they are barking (and even scratching!) so you can get ahead of issues like heart and skin problems.
For those of you that follow the meditation wellness space, you’re probably familiar with all the great apps and physical accessories out there like the Headspace app and the Muse meditation headband.
While those tools are great, the apps and the physical accessories rely on you using your smartphone. And the smartphone itself is a source of stress for lots of folks in the first place. So what do you do if you want to use technology to help you meditate but you want to take your smartphone out of the equation?
Enter the Morphée Zen—a small iPod shuffle-like device shaped like a Zen garden stone that is pre-programmed with a host of meditations, soundscapes, and such. You simply plug your headphones into the “stone”, use the tactile buttons to start and control the experience, and enjoy the benefits of guided meditation while your smartphone is stashed somewhere out of sight and out of mind.
Technology is ever-shrinking and now it’s possible to fit serious biometric tracking into a profile as small as a ring. This year at CES a new ring-based competitor emerged: the Movano Ring. It’s stylish—it comes in four colors and multiple designs—and tracks your physical activity, heart rate, temperature, sleep quality.
The ring and the companion app compile the data together to give you friendly automated insights like pointing out when a day of heavy exercise led to really good sleep or if consistent cardio exercise has lowered your resting heart rate.
Want fitness insights without around-the-clock tracking? The Withings Body Scan is the latest in very high-tech home smart scales that bring clinic-like biometric tracking right into your home.
The Body Scan is radically more advanced than the simple body-fat-percentage scales we (and many of you) might have already. The scale combines both a foot pad (that looks like a traditional scale) with a handle you grip during the measurement process. This setup allows the Body Scan to take a much more accurate assessment of your body for more accurate body fat measurement, as well as perform other interesting measurements like heart health assessments and even checking the health of the nerves in your feet.
Because of the advanced nature of the product and what it promises to do, it is currently under review by the FDA. The company says it’s hopeful for quick approval which means the product could potentially be available for consumers by the end of summer.
Bluetooth-based trackers are super popular and increasingly super small. While Apple’s AirTags pair perfectly, by design, with iPhones, they are still rather bulky and not exactly something you can slip into your wallet with ease.
The Card Spot is a new offering from tracking company Chipolo that shrinks their Spot tracker down into a slim credit card shape and integrates with Apple’s Find My Bluetooth network so you can seamlessly use your iPhone to find your missing stuff. At a reasonable $35, it’s a great product to slip into your wallet or bag if you’re prone to losing them.
Over the years at CES we have seen more smart toothbrushes than you can imagine, but one of the things that have always bugged us about them is their smartphone integration. If you’re holding your phone while brushing your teeth it should be because you’re looking at Instagram not because you need to look at the screen to get feedback from your toothbrush.
The new Oral-B iO Series 10 smart toothbrush combines the best of both worlds. It’s a smart toothbrush that does, in fact, pair with a smart app that functions as a personal dental hygiene coach. But you don’t need the app for daily use as the toothbrush and the charging base provide real-time feedback and information.
Brushing too hard? the base of the brush and the charging base will both turn red to tell you to ease up before you murder your gums. All the other visual feedback you’d expect from an app, such as timing, is also built into the base so you only have to bust out your smartphone if you’re trying to fit in some social media scrolling while brushing.
Boy, you know what a lot of us learned in 2020 and 2021? Dyeing your hair at home is a huge pain. The folks at L’Oreal, who pretty invented the home dye job in the first place, took note of just how many of us were dying our hair at home (or helping our spouses dye theirs) and just straight up not having a good time.
The end result? The ColorSonic, a device that looks like a cross between a flat iron and brush, but is actually an advanced cartridge-based hair dye delivery system. You load the cartridge, turn it on, and brush the dye-delivery brush through your hair. The brush bristles oscillate over 300 times per minute to help distribute the dye and coat every strand. All of which sounds way better than the experience of slopping dye all over your head and hoping for the best.
Even better yet, the device uses the dye on-demand by mixing it as it is applied to your hair. If you don’t use the whole pack you can save it and use it for touch-ups (or even a complete dye job if there’s enough left).
Over the years there has been a flood of smart cleaning devices on the market, though most of them focus exclusively on either vacuuming or mopping as combining the two at all (let alone effectively) is difficult.
Ecovacs has a promising new multi-function device coming to market with the Deebot X1 Omni. The vacuum/mop itself has about the same Roomba-like shape and profile you’d expect, but docks in a rather substantial dock about the size of a kitchen trashcan. That substantial dock holds a dustbin for dumping solid debris sucked up by the vacuum, as well as a dual water reservoir that holds clean and dirty water for the mop functions. How much for this “But wait, there’s more!” full-service floor cleaning experience? A cool $1,549 is the cost of entry into the never-mop-again crowd.
There are so many smart lights every year at CES it’s truly difficult to narrow things down. We have a little bit of a soft spot for this particular entry, however. Sengled, purveyor of all manner of budget-friendly smart lights and smart home products, introduced a TV accessory this year at CES, the Sengled Wi-Fi Video-Sync TV Light Strips.
It’s a camera-based reactive ambient TV light that’s a direct competitor to the also camera-based Govee ambient TV light system—both products are, in turn, a much more economical alternative to the pricey Hue system that uses a dedicated sync box as well as the pricier Hue lights. Not familiar with the reactive ambient lighting market, here’s the scoop: it’s light strips that mimic the colors on the TV to create a much wider and more immersive visual experience by “extending” the colors along the edges of the screen along the walls.
We’ve both reviewed the Govee system at Review Geek and have it in our own homes (and love it) so we’re pretty excited there’s another product on the market using the same trick to bring reactive ambient TV lighting to consumers at a more affordable price point. Rather than dropping $300-500 on a Hue system, you’ll be able to pick up the Sengled system for $120.
The fun of having a bird feeder in your backyard is, naturally, the birds. But you can’t sit there all day with a pair of binoculars looking at them and setting up a camera with a massive telephoto lens to capture a picture of them is fun (if you’re into photography) but otherwise a bit impractical.
Wouldn’t it be nice if you could catalog the birds that came to your yard, Pokemon-style, so even when you weren’t sitting there sipping your coffee on a work-from-home break you still knew if some elusive avian friend like an Indigo Bunting stopped by? The BirdBudy Smart Feeder combines the classic profile and function of a bird feeder with a camera but doesn’t stop there.
Not only do you get photos and videos of the birds that visit your feeder but it uses AI to identify the birds and catalog you for them. Further, the built-in microphone can identify birds by their calls and birdsong so even if a particular bird doesn’t land right in front of the camera but makes a stop in your yard, you’ll know what kind of bird it was. Finally, AI and smart technology put to good use.
One particular market niche we’ve always been fond of is the “pico” projector market. There you won’t find large ceiling-mounted projectors, but instead interesting and little projectors designed to be used on the go. This year the hottest item in that category is the Samsung Freestyle Projector that is clearly, and without question, not being marketed to the home cinema purist but instead to people interested in using their projector as a playful and fun device.
It has a canister form factor and a pivot base that give it a look more like a theater light than a theater projector. It throws a 1080p resolution picture up to 100 inches across and is largely totally automated. Other than using the build-in Samsung Smart TV interface to actually scroll throw Netflix or otherwise pick your content, the rest of the process happens automagically. When you turn it on the projector will automatically adjust for whatever angle you’re projecting it, self-level the picture, and auto-keystone it so that it looks square and natural.
And when you’re not using the projector to watch videos, you can still enjoy it. Throw the semi-translucent cap over the lens and use the music mode for some cool ambient lighting to go with your tunes. How much does all this magic cost you? $900, because living large with fancy new tech is never cheap.
If you have a traditional dishwasher, this particular pick probably won’t be of much interest to you. If you don’t have a traditional dishwasher or, for that matter, don’t even live in a traditional space (van dwellers and people subletting a crawl space in San Fransisco, this one’s for you) then take note.
The Daan Tech Bob Dishwasher is a retro-looking counter-top dishwasher that’s perfect for folks who want the convenience of a dishwasher but are living in small spaces, older apartments without dishwashers, or other living situations where having a dedicated plumbed-in dishwasher isn’t an option.
Why not just hand wash? The Bob Dishwasher not only uses 5 times less water than hand washing the equivalent amount of dishes, but it also dries and sanitizes them with an integrated UV light. You can preorder the Bob for $299.
The first time we saw an AirSelfie product was back at CES 2016 and we’re happy to see they’re still going strong and continually improving on exactly what made the first product so magical.
And what exactly makes it magical? For the unfamiliar, the AirSelfie platform, further refined with the Air NEO, is a semi-autonomous selfie drone about the size of a deck of cards. You pull the Air NEO out of your pocket, turn it on, toss it in the air like you’re living your best cyberpunk life, and the drone automatically takes off, and flies around you like an AI cinematographer filming your adventures and snapping pictures of you and your friends. When the adventure is over, just stick out your hand and the drone will come home and land like a pet bird.
If you ever get the feeling that the future you were promised is super lame and looks nothing like the sci-fi movies of your childhood promised it would look, you’ll always have the Air NEO, a little drone friend that can take pictures of you automagically. No word yet on pricing, but if previous AirSelfie price points are any indicator, expect to pay $250-300.
And there you have it! Every year at CES is an adventure—we always look forward to finding new things and sharing them. So be sure to check back next year for the LifeSavvy CES 2023 awards for all that’s new, novel, and packed with exciting tech for your home, your health and wellness, and more.
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