Michael Lewis is currently attending CES 2013 (the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas), and is blogging about highlights at the event.

Well the first day has come and gone – and I joined several hundred international press and bloggers to hear about the state of play of the consumer electronics market both in the US and internationally. Of great interest was the growth of Smartphones and tablets globally.

Who would have thought when the first Smartphones were introduced that they would come to have such a significant impact on a wide range of industries. The original iPhone was advertised as a phone. Today the Smartphone controls your heating, monitors home or office security, is a portable library, a sound system, an up to the minute newspaper and so much more. Oh, and in case you forgot – it also makes phone calls!

Much more about this in coming days.

Here are some of the more interesting products I saw this evening, along with information taken from the manufacturer’s promotional materials (refer to the web links for more details on the product including as to availability, any applicable terms and conditions of use, and pricing where applicable):


Image: Allure Energy

Allure Energy introduced NFC capabilities in their EverSense™ 2.0 Home Environment and Energy Management Platform. We are going to continue hearing about the Connected Home this year – and EverSense is definitely a player in this environment.

EverSense is a mobile app that runs on Android phones with NFC. You can easily modify your home environment by simply setting your phone on a countertop or nightstand. Instead of having to get up to turn off your music, or adjust the temperature, you simply put your Android phone on a SyncPad™ and EverSense automatically adjusts the home environment as you want it.

Each smart device can be managed, using proximity control while you are away from home, and NFC control while you are at home. Proximity control manages your home’s environment and energy usage based on how far, or near you may be from your residence. As you leave, the environment is altered based on how far away you are. As you return, EverSenseTM 2.0 automatically creates the ideal environment you want. Adjustments are determined on your smart phone based on your current location. (Your location remains on your smart phone and is never sent into the cloud, ensuring privacy.)

EverSense ticks the box for being environmentally proactive, exciting, and definitely has “wow” factor. Find out more at Allure Energy’s website.

Vuzix Smart Glasses

Image: Vuzix (used with permission)

I know by now to expect the unexpected at CES. However, the Vuzix Smart Glasses M100 Hands Free Smartphone Display caught me totally unaware. Talk about life imitating art. Imagine being linked to data from your Smartphone and the Cloud, having text, video, emails, maps and audio all available through a single wearable visual connection. Imagine no more. It’s here – and it’s amazing.

The Vuzix M100 incorporates a visual display with integrated camera, a powerful processing engine, running an Android OS, to wirelessly connect via BlueTooth or WiFi to your smartphone (iOS or Android) or other compatible device. It’s powerful enough to connect to the internet, run applications and games on its own, and connect to your many existing applications.

You can answer your phone using a visual address book, enable applications from reading text messages and emails to visual navigation. You can shoot video as you walk or engage basic augmented reality applications.

It even has an integrated head tracker and GPS for spacial and positional awareness and its integrated SD card captures video and still images that can be shared over the web. Through its Cloud connectivity, you can merge virtual information with the real world.

A cautionary note – the Vuzix Smart Glasses M100 is NOT designed to be used whilst driving, as your attention is drawn to its screen.

That said – I can’t wait to take one for a stroll down the street! Find out more at Vuzix’s website.

Masimo iSpO2™ – Commercially Available Pulse Oximeter for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch

Image: iSpO2 (used with permission)

What is a pulse oximeter and why would I want one? A good question. A variety of people purchase pulse oximeters for personal use, including fitness buffs (not me) and people who may be trekking or skiing in high altitudes. A pulse oximeter measures blood oxygenation and pulse rate and perfusion. Next time you are watching an episode of General Hospital and you see the actors wheeling in a patient calling out “sats 98” you know they would have been reading from a pulse oximeter (or a script!).

Seriously, this is another example where Smartphone applications are the bridge between complex equipment and affordability.

The iSpO2™ is easy to use. Connect the iSpO2™ cable to your iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch, slip the iSpO2™ sensor on your fourth (ring) finger, and your results appear on your device screen. The iSpO2™ app provides you with immediate access to your data history, allowing you to view measurements, graphs, and trends over time. You can export your data history into a .CSV file for use with text editing and spreadsheet programs. Find out more at the iSpO2™ website.

Siemens Aquaris™ – the first truly waterproof, dustproof and virtually shockproof hearing aid*

Image: Siemens (used with permission)

Legal disclaimer from Siemens: *Achieved IP68 rating per IEC 60529 standard. The device can be completely submerged with no water seeping inside, and no damage to the instrument during continuous immersion in water up to 3 feet. Also, dust will not interfere with the satisfactory operation of the device. Requires appropriate earmold for submersion.

Aquaris ™ is the most robust, truly waterproof hearing instrument available. It’s resistant to dust, perspiration and humidity, and great for people who spend time in demanding conditions. No matter where you need to wear it – the gym, gardening, playing in the sand at the beach, Aquaris ™ is designed to keep the elements out. Siemens had designed the Aquaris ™ to optimize hearing performance with exceptional clarity and sound comfort so you can enjoy life without limits.

I was excited to get the pre-CES invitation to view a demonstration of Aquaris ™. In the busy CES Unveiled, with hundreds of eager journalists and bloggers alternating between the amazing new products and several open bars and food, I experienced first hand the Aquaris ™ at work – under water!

Siemens have a range of accessories for Aquaris ™ – including the Sports Clip, Aquapac (an ideal way to store remote controls etc), miniTek ® and Tek ®. VoiceLink ™ – a combination Bluetooth transmitter and separate microphone, streams a companion’s voice directly to miniTek. The wearer can hear speech as if they were standing only millimeters apart from the speaker, which is especially useful in noisy environments such as restaurants, classrooms, or large gatherings. Again the best place to demonstrate this to me was during CES Unveiled – not many noisier places I could have picked to showcase such an impressive product set. Find out more at Siemens’ website.

More to come…

Many more products overviews to come – but for now – thanks for reading. I’m off to the next round of press conferences. Tomorrow the madness starts in earnest – CES 2013 is open to the public!

Note: The above information is not to be taken as Telstra’s endorsement of the products mentioned, or to vouch for their performance or quality; this blog is just intended to provide readers with reporting on highlights of products showcased at CES 2013. Readers should consult the manufacturer’s websites and promotional material for full details on the products.