The 2022 Consumer Electronics Show is well underway, and despite a few pandemic-related setbacks, tech companies big and small have still showed up in full force and dropped an avalanche of new products. The latest launches offer a glimpse into what’s in store for the year ahead, technologically speaking. Here’s an abridged recap of the big hits and happenings so far, broken down by category. Enjoy!
- Home Theater
- Smart Home
If you thought there was no more room for televisions to improve, think again. At CES 2022, TV makers have outdone themselves and taken giant leaps with new technologies such as MicroLED. Though LG and Samsung grabbed the lion’s share of headlines with their refreshed range of televisions, it was Sony that claimed the prime spotlight with the world’s first QD-OLED TV. The rest of the brands, on the other hand, focused more on offering more at less. TCL, more specifically, wants to sell you a monstrous 98-inch 4K TV for a cool $8,000.
Sony dropped the world’s first Quantum Dot OLED TV
Sony beat LG and Samsung to launch the first consumer Quantum Dot OLED TV. Jargon aside, this technology — developed, in fact, by Samsung Electronics — morphs the best of OLED and quantum dot technology to produce unparalleled picture quality, with perfect blacks and higher brightness.
Although Sony has yet to announce the pricing and availability of its QD-OLED televisions, it did share a handful of specs. They’ll be available in 65-inch and 55-inch sizes at 4K resolution and come equipped with top-of-the-line hardware, including built-in cable management, variable refresh rate, and a pair of HDMI 2.1 ports.
LG 2022 OLED TVs get brighter, bigger, and … smaller?
LG is storming the CES show floor with a gargantuan 97-inch OLED television and teased a 136-inch 4K HDR MicroLED TV. Although these display technologies continue to remain best in class, it’s the more practical additions that caught most people’s eyes. Its most premium 4K OLED TVs, for instance, can now sustain higher brightness for longer periods without negative effects, thanks to a refreshed thermal management system.
LG is also working on bringing OLED screens to the masses. It introduced a new 42-inch variant of the high-end C-Series OLED TV, which has the potential to become a crowd favorite among both general TV enthusiasts and gamers.
Samsung’s new TVs bring NFTs to life
Samsung’s TVs got bigger, brighter, and its MicroLED displays went “bezel-free” at CES. But since 2021 itself was a groundbreaking year for Samsung, it didn’t feel the need to do much on the hardware front this time. Instead, CES 2022 was all about software for Samsung’s TV division,.
For starters, Samsung revamped its televisions’ home screen to “put all streaming service content into one, easy-to-browse place.” There’s also a new “Watch Together” feature that allows you to plug in a camera or your phone to chat while watching content with your friends and family remotely. Samsung is also bringing NFTs to your living room, and says it will soon let you “browse, purchase, and display your favorite art — all in one place.”
Samsung’s weird new pivoting projector
Samsung’s new Freestyle projector can do much more than just project movies. For $900, it features a LED swiveling display that produces images in sizes from 30 to 100 inches — but that’s not all. The translucent lens cap can turn your room into a visual light show or create mood lighting to match whatever music you’re playing.
TCL’s giant 98-inch 4K TV hits CES — and stores — for under $8,000
If you don’t intend to pay ungodly sums of money (tens of thousands of dollars) for LG’s and Samsung’s new giant MicroLED displays, TCL’s latest 98-inch 4K QLED Google TV could be right up your alley. For a little over $7,500, it gets you a 4K panel, HDR, 144Hz refresh rate, and of course, a whole lot of screen.
Computers turned a new chapter at CES 2022 as well. Whether it’s Dell embracing the Touch Bar that Apple killed last year or Intel’s claim for the chip crown, there were plenty of surprises and announcements to get excited about. The show has had its fair share of weirdness, too, with Samsung’s rotating cockpit of monitor madness and TP-Link’s motorized router.
Dell revives the Touch Bar
Dell pushed the envelope for how slim its Ultrabook can be with the XPS 13 Plus, but that, unfortunately, meant some unexpected compromises. The XPS 13 Plus’ keyboard has no space between keys and minimal travel. The touchpad isn’t outlined either and responds with haptic feedback. And function row has been swapped out for a Touch Bar-like capacitive touch strip. It’s a radical overhaul — but will it work? We’ll have to wait to find out.
A router that follows you
You can easily mistake TP-Link’s new router for a compact drone. The latest Archer AXE200 Omni router has four antennas at the top that automatically fold out and swivel to grab the best possible signal for your devices. It’s compatible with the new Wi-Fi 6E technology and offers triband speed, with a 6Ghz band joining the existing 5Ghz and 2.4Ghz ones.
Intel thinks it has Apple’s chips beat
Intel is catching up with Apple’s silicon prowess. Its new 12th-gen chips are up to 40 percent faster than the previous generation mobile processor. But most importantly, the silicon maker claims the top-of-the-line i9 processor has “superior performance” compared to Apple’s M1 Max. Intel’s new mobile processors are expected to be available later this year.
Lenovo’s ThinkPad line of laptops gets ‘progressive’
Lenovo is rolling out a huge visual refresh for its ThinkPad laptops to target the younger boardroom members. The new Z-Series ThinkPad notebooks come with a sleek exterior and will go on sale in funky colors. They skip Intel and run on AMD’s latest Ryzen Pro processors, boast an edge-to-edge 16:10 screen with a protruding housing for the 1080p webcam, and feature the tiny red TrackPoint.
Asus ROG Flow Z13 is a beefed-up Windows tablet for gamers
Asus’ new Windows gaming tablet, the ROG Flow Z13, manages to cram more in a 12mm-thick enclosure than you’d think. You can configure it with Intel’s Core i9-12900H 45-watt processor and Nvidia’s RTX 3050 Ti or connect it to an external GPU via a proprietary port. It has a 13.4-inch display, a kickstand, and a detachable keyboard with per-key RGB backlighting.
Samsung ARK is a rotating cockpit of monitor madness
You have to see the Samsung Odyssey Ark to believe it exists. It’s the biggest and curviest monitor ever with a 55-inch screen you can even flip vertically to be completely consumed by it. The screen size is adaptable, which means you can adjust it to fit whatever game or program you’re using, and there’s a dedicated dial controller to manage its lighting and interface.
Acer Swift X features Intel’s most powerful discrete GPU yet
Acer is back with an annual upgrade for its Swift X notebook. Its 16-inch model sports Intel’s first competitive discrete GPU, known as Intel Arc graphics. Other than that, they carry standard upgrades, including 2K screens, Windows 11, plenty of ports, and Intel’s 12th Gen Intel Core processors.
CES isn’t a mobile-first event — that comes later in the year at Mobile World Congress. However, there were still a ton of new announcements at CES for improved computing on the go.
Qualcomm and Microsoft team up to build AR chips
The augmented reality arms race is on and Microsoft doesn’t want to be left behind. It’s partnering with Qualcomm to develop a new, customized Snapdragon augmented reality chip for powering AR glasses within Microsoft’s ecosystems. The alliance, the two giants promise, will lead to “next-generation, power-efficient, very lightweight AR glasses.”
Samsung’s new Galaxy S21 FE is an affordable flagship phone
CES is Samsung’s display division’s territory, not mobile. Yet, the latter still managed to dominate the headlines with the release of the new Galaxy S21 FE smartphone. In spite of the $699 price, the Galaxy S21 FE sports top-of-the-line specs, including a variable refresh rate, Snapdragon 888 chipset, a total of four cameras, and a 4,500mAh battery.
Garmin Vivomove Sport is a fashionable smartwatch with a hidden screen
Garmin is moving beyond the fitness niche and wants to take a shot at the mainstream smartwatch market. Its new Vivomove Sport watch, at first glance, looks like a standard timepiece but hidden underneath its analog hands is a touchscreen display. It has all the bells and whistles you’d expect from a Garmin wearable, such as the ability to track blood oxygen levels, sleep, and more.
TCL’s NXTWEAR AIR wearable display is like a cinema on your face
The second iteration of TCL’s display glasses no longer look like something you’d be embarrassed to wear in public. Along with a more normal sunglasses design, the new NxtWear Air are also 30 percent lighter and have a pair of 1080p Micro OLED displays that give the effect of viewing a 140-inch screen from about 13 feet away. TCL’s glasses are only meant to be cinema for your face with in-built speakers and don’t have any AR or VR abilities.
One of the key themes of CES 2022 is the focus on simplifying the smart home experience. Appliances have come a long way, but setting up a smart home from scratch and dealing with a gazillion standards and hubs is nothing short of a nightmare. A few companies have set their sights on fixing that, from Arlo to Samsung.
Arlo’s security system makes managing sensors a breeze
Arlo’s new security system solves one of the biggest pain points of monitoring your home: Proprietary sensors. Instead, Arlo’s signature new feature is an all-in-one multi-sensor that you can link to any of eight different functions. It can recognize motion, windows being opened, water leaks, smoke alarms, and more.
Whirlpool’s smart oven now doubles as an air fryer
Whirlpool has a new software update for its range of smart ovens, which brings not just a feature, but pretty much adds an entirely new appliance to the oven. The company’s Smart Slide-in Gas and Electric Ranges, as well as the Smart Single, Double, and Combination Wall Ovens, can now act as air fryers. All you need to buy is an air fry basket that will be available sometime in early 2022.
A light bulb that tracks your sleep and heart rate
Sengled’s latest smart light bulb packs much more than what meets the eye. With a groundbreaking new radar technology, it can measure several vital signs of anyone within range — including sleep quality stats, heart rate, and body temperature. On top of that, it can tell when someone has fallen within a room and automatically call for help.
Schlage’s smart deadbolt lets you unlock doors with a tap of your watch
Schlage has announced the first lock with support for Apple’s Home Key. Introduced with iOS 15, the functionality allows you to store a digital key in your phone or watch and lock or unlock doors with just a tap. Called the Schlage Encode Plus, it will hit the shelves in spring 2022 for $300.
Talk to Panasonic’s smart microwave via Alexa
Panasonic is the latest appliance maker to let you cook popcorn by talking to Alexa. Its latest Smart Inverter Countertop Microwave Oven works with Amazon’s voice assistant. Once you set it up, you can simply talk to the microwave to remotely perform over 100 functions.
New alliance seeks to simplify setting up a smart home
The Achilles’ heel of investing in a smart home is that you’re stuck within one particular company’s walled garden. A handful of smart home companies have joined hands to solve that and enable interoperability across appliances. Called the Home Connectivity Alliance, it involves American Standard Air Conditioning and Heating, Arcelik, The Electrolux Group, Haier, GE Appliances, Samsung Electronics, and Trane Residential.
It wouldn’t be CES without the next generation of automobile tech, and we’re glad to report that this year is no exception. From more giants throwing hats in the ring to a high-speed autonomous car race, CES 2022 has got it all.
Sony gets serious about electric cars
Sony announced not just a product, but a new subsection of the company that will focus on building commercial electric vehicles: Sony Mobility. In addition to the Sony Vision-S sedan it showcased last year, the electronics giant took the wraps off a new SUV prototype model this time around called the Sony Vision-S SUV. Safety was the centerpiece of Sony’s pitch. “A total of 40 sensors are installed inside and outside of the vehicle to monitor safety,” President and CEO Kenichiro Yoshida said.
Mercedes’ next-gen electric car can go 1,000km in one charge
It’s hard to take our eyes off Mercedes’ handsome new Vision EQXX concept car. But it’s what’s inside that matters more. The automobile company says it’s the longest-range electric vehicle, capable of going about 621 miles on a single charge. The efficiency, as per Mercedes, comes from improved aerodynamics and a lightweight design instead of just a bulkier battery.
CES is hosting a high-speed autonomous car race this year
On January 7, a pack of race cars will hit the Las Vegas Motor Speedway with speeds touching 180 miles per hour — and not a single one of them will have a human driver at the wheel. They’ll be competing in the Indy Autonomous Challenge, where university teams from around the world put their algorithms to the test. The event will be livestreamed and you can watch it either on the official website or Twitch.
GM set to unveil Chevy Silverado EV line
GM revealed the Chevy Silverado EV line of pickup trucks. Though much has been kept under the wraps so far, it will likely share the design of the latest non-EV Silverado models. It could also have a similar platform as the latest Hummer EV, which means up to 1,000 horsepower and 400 miles of range.
The rise of video games, especially during the pandemic lockdowns, has turned the CES show floor into a gaming gear battleground. At CES 2022, gaming processors hit new performance heights (and got cheaper), monitors adapted next-gen tech for better split-second reactions, and laptops somehow gained more powerful internals in the same, thin form factor.
Nvidia’s $249 GPU
Thanks to Nvidia, building high-end gaming PCs will no longer break the bank. Its new RTX 3050 starts at just $249 and offers everything you’d require to play most games. It’s built on the company’s Ampere architecture and supports ray tracing at 60 frames per second (fps) and 1080p. There’s 8GB of GDDR6 memory and third-gen Tensor cores for DLSS upscaling.
Samsung’s Gaming Hub is like Steam for cloud gaming on your TV
Samsung’s latest lineup of smart TVs have a software section called the Gaming Hub, where you’ll be able to browse and play titles from a bunch of cloud gaming services like Google Stadia and Nvidia’s GeForce Now. Samsung says the hub will soon also integrate both PlayStation and Xbox, which means you can play both cloud and local video games with a single controller.
Alienware’s Concept Nyx puts a dedicated game streaming server in your house
Alienware has a bizarre new idea for a house full of gamers. Its Concept Nyx imagines a dedicated game streaming server in your home that would let you stream multiple games on any screen you want. So say you want to boot up Forza on your television and your sibling wants Uncharted on their monitor, you wouldn’t need to buy two computers. Nyx would theoretically allow you both to stream your own games separately.
AMD claims the ‘world’s fastest gaming processor’
AMD has debuted the first processor to take advantage of the 3D V-Cache technology and claims it’s the “world’s fastest gaming processor.” The 3D V-Cache enables AMD to stack the cache on top of the chip and fit in an additional 64MB of cache. Compared to its predecessor, the Ryzen 5800X3D delivers up to a 15% improvement in games at 1080p.
Alienware has the world’s first QD-OLED gaming monitor
Alienware has already managed to engineer Samsung’s latest QD-OLED display tech into a gaming monitor — and after seeing it in person, we have to admit the results are impressive to say the least. Apart from the enhanced picture quality, the new 34-inch monitor can reach a peak brightness of 1,000 nits and features a resolution of 3440 x 1440.
HyperX’s new wireless gaming headset has a 300-hour battery
HyperX’s new Cloud Alpha has the longest battery life of any gaming headset we’ve ever seen. It’s rated to last about 300 hours in one go and is set to hit retail in February for $200. What’s more, it offers 50mm drivers that are lighter on your ears. There are also memory-form earcups and a detachable microphone.
Razer’s 2022 Blade notebooks are more refined than ever
Razer’s Blade series of gaming notebooks are now more capable than ever, thanks to Intel’s 12-gen CPUs and Nvidia’s upgraded GeForce RTX 3070 Ti and TX 3080 Ti GPUs. The screens on the Blade 15 and Blade 17 also go up to 144Hz refresh rates and there’s a larger 82-watt-hour battery on the latter.
MSI’s new gaming laptops finally have a liquid metal pad
MSI’s latest gaming laptops are powered by Intel’s 12-gen chips and Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 Ti graphics card. But their highlight is the addition of a Phase Change Liquid Metal Pad. The liquid metal remains a solid paste solution over the CPU until 58 Celsius, after which it melts to be more efficient at managing heat. It’s a technology several manufacturers have already adopted.