CES 2017 Highlights
A 35 Year Tradition Continues.
CES is an international consumer electronics and technology tradeshow that takes place every January in Las Vegas, Nevada. Our founder and President Bob Cole and his wife Karen have attended the show every year for the past 35+ years to see and experience first-hand the newest innovations in consumer tech. Making up the team this year, in addition to Karen and Bob was our Chief Merchant, Stephanie Keough, our eCommerce Director, Emily Cole, our Planner, Forrest Kimmel, our COO, Patrick Moran, and our Director of Awesome, Gavin Doering (a WWS veteran since 1982).
This year was all about the connected home and the "virtual assistant" - Google Home, Amazon's Alexa, etc. From TVs, receivers, and pianos, to hairbrushes and automated floss dispensers, it seemed as though nearly every booth was developing some sort of voice command integration. The focus is about getting you to the experience faster, with less obstacles and less distractions. Removing complicated user interfaces and connection delays, distracting hardware and accessories. Imagine a new TV where the audio emanates directly from the screen and the TV stand hides behind the display in a rear easel design so you see nothing but the beautiful display in front of you. Or a "Hey Google, play Gimme Shelter in all rooms" instantaneously results in the Rolling Stones streaming from every speaker throughout your home, inside and out. Want it louder? Just ask.
Yamaha described their focus for 2017 in one sentence and it really summed up the show: "We want to help you love your music more". The focus this year is on the purity of the experience - not the journey to the experience. To make it sound and look better and to let you enjoy it when and where you want to. To make it all just... SIMPLE.
Follow our team's photo journal as they tour the 2017 Consumer Electronic's Show (CES) in Las Vegas and check out the coolest tech trends and newest products.
JBL/Harman Kardon/AKG Suite
JBL Portable Bluetooth speakers
JBL introduced the new Flip4 and Pulse3, brand new colors for the Clip2, Charge3, and Xtreme, and an upgrade to their proprietary JBL Connect+ technology that will let you wirelessly connect 100+ JBL Connect+ enabled speakers together. JBL speaker meet-up anyone?
Mark Levinson listening room
An immersive, magical tunnel of LG OLED TVs.
A total of 216 separate 55-inch curved OLED displays were used, comprising 447,897,600 – nearly half a billion – pixels.
LG "Wallpaper" Signature OLED TV W
LG's new flagship for 2017 is an AWE-some OLED TV that is 2.7mm thick. A 2017 CES Best of Innovation award-winner, The Wallpaper is so light and thin that it attaches to the wall via magnetic brackets that leave no gap between the wall and the TV. Audio is provided via a separate Dolby Atmos speaker system and media box connected to the display via a flat strip cable that can be painted to disappear into the wall.
Samsung debuted their QLED displays - named from their Quantum Dot Technology - that improves the brightness and vibrancy of colors without crushing black levels. Flagship QLED TVs will connect to an external connections box via an ‘invisible’ - transparent and ultra thin - fibre optic cable. A new display designed to look like a painting - that displays art when not in use - was also unveiled. Can you spot the TV in the pic?
All of the video manufacturers were about removing the distraction of the stands to reveal just the display. Sony’s Acoustic Surface technology allows for the surface to vibrate so the audio emanates from the screen. And a rear easel allowed for the TV to appear to stand on its own. All hardware and electronics are housed in the easel.
Sony’s short-throw projector was impressive - housed in a custom Salamander cabinet. This would be a great solution for small spaces, rentals, lofts, etc. Sony also released a small, portable short-throw projector and a portable Xperia projector, which can turn any surface into a touchscreen.
The High-Res Audio Bar
Sony's high-res "bar" showed off their noise-cancelling headphone/music player combo for $5,500. The music player (weighing in at 1 pound), carved out of a solid block of oxygen-free copper, sits beneath the gold veneer of the Walkman and can play practically every music format. It runs for 26 hours while playing back FLAC files or 11 hours with the highest-quality DSD files.
The Enspire Disklavier acoustic piano plays all by itself and does multi-room audio via MusicCast. It comes preloaded with 500 songs (more available for download) with the actual keystrokes captured live by the musicians and recorded just for the Enspire.
View our entire photo album from CES