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Android Central’s Best of CES 2021

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CES offers us a yearly opportunity to see a diverse set of products and services from companies all around the world. The scale of the show makes it impossible to see everything at the show, and even tougher to digest it all when watching from afar. That’s why we spend several days in Las Vegas seeing and experiencing all of the latest products that are in any way related to Android. And when CES comes to a close, we select our absolute favorite product announcements from the show and award them for their innovation.

Here are all the winners of our Best of CES 2021 awards!

Best of CES 2021

LG Rollable

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LG is turning heads again.

LG’s CES announcements were largely focused on its new televisions, but the company managed to make a splash with a teaser for its upcoming resizeable smartphone. Tentatively called “LG Rollable”, the device was briefly shown off in a teaser with the display moving from an expanded mode to a standard smartphone-sized display. It looked very slick, and there’s no doubt this phone is going to be the talk of the town whenever it’s officially launched.

Acer Chromebook Spin 514

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Ryzen optimized for Chrome OS.

There were a few Chromebooks announced at CES, but one that caught our eye was the Acer Chromebook Spin 514. With a starting price-point under $500, this Chromebook has a lot to offer with its sleek, versatile hinge design, 14″ FHD touch display, a 10-hour battery life, and is powered by Ryzen 3 or 7 processors. This laptop isn’t here to just look pretty, it’s also ready to get some work done.

Skagen Jorn Hybrid HR

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Here for a long time.

Skagen’s new Jorn Hybrid HR smartwatch doesn’t run Wear OS to its benefit. With the always-on E-Ink display, this smartwatch can track your workouts, control music, manage notifications, and even track your sleep, all on a battery that lasts up to two weeks! Not many smartwatches can claim that and look this good!

Galaxy Upcycling at Home

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New uses for your old phones.

This one isn’t a product, per se, but is sure to have a positive impact on the environment. Samsung announced that it’s Galaxy Upcycling at Home project that allows you to repurpose old Galaxy smartphones for use around the house. For instance, you can use your old phone as a baby-monitor to notify you when your child is crying, or as a home security device using Samsung Knox. Samsung envisions many different IoT uses, and it’s definitely a great way to reduce e-waste caused by tossing your old smartphones.

Razer Project Hazel

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A face mask that’s actually cool!

One of the more unexpected announcements to come out of CES was Razer’s Project Hazel, which is a face mask with RGB Chroma lighting. The transparent design is meant to improve social interaction, along with Razer’s VoiceAmp technology which should help keep the wearer’s voice from sounding muffled by amplifying it. For now, these medical-grade masks are only a concept for now, but Razer will continue testing and hopefully, we can get our hands on one sooner rather than later!

Kyocera Duraforce Ultra 5G UW

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A tank of a 5G phone.

There weren’t many phones on display at CES, which was expected. But what wasn’t expected was for Kyocera to make announce the new Duraforce Ultra 5G UW. It brings blazing-fast 5G speeds to the rugged smartphone sector, thanks to Verizon’s 5G network. There’s a dual-camera setup on the rear that has a Super Night Vision mode and even lets you record video underwater! HazLoc and MIL-STD-810H certification mean this phone can withstand anything you throw at it.

Sonos Move Battery Replacement Kit

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Keep the music going.

This one is also less about announcing a product, and more about prolonging the products you already have. Sonos announced a battery replacement kit for the Sonos Move, which is easily the best smart speaker on the market right now. This way, users can extend the already 3-year lifespan of the Move’s battery by just replacing it instead of throwing tossing the speaker. It’s nice when a company is more concerned about the environment than selling you a whole new device.

ASUS Chromebook CX9

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Chrome, but make it powerful.

ASUS launched a trio of overpowered Chromebooks at CES this year, but taking the cake is the new ASUS Chromebook CX9. Powered by Intel’s 11th gen Core i5 or i7 processors with Xe graphics, this Chromebook is meant for business. It has a sleep design, up to 16GB of RAM, plenty of ports, and stylus support. Pricing and availability haven’t been announced yet, but expect this pretty laptop to cost a pretty penny.

TCL Display Tech

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TCL won’t be outdone by LG.

LG isn’t the only company showing off its cool display tech. TCL came to play, too, and showed off a couple of concept devices. The first was a smartphone that stars off in a fairly compact size, then expands upwards to more standard smartphone size. The second was a bit more interesting and futuristic. TCL’s “Printed OLED” display tech was shown off in a device that resembled a scroll both when opened and closed, and it’s only 0.18mm thick.

Google, Everywhere

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Google is coming to more TVs.

Google may not have had its own announcement at CES, but the company was definitely omnipresent. Sony announced its new lineup of Bravia TVs that will likely be the first to run Google TV out of the box, followed by TCL’s own Google TV lineup. LG also announced that its upcoming TVs will have Stadia built-in. This means we could be heading to a future with fewer Chromecast dongles and more Google built-into our TVs.

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