Products & Services
It's only June, but electronics companies are already gearing up for the 2014 holiday season. A whole group of them got together to show off new and coming-soon devices that make great gifts at New York's CE Week. Standouts were few—but these three fun products caught our eye.
The Ozobot is an attempt to combine robotics and gaming, with a mini-robot that uses an optical sensor to navigate on different-colored lines that determine their speed. Tracking physical and digital lines seamlessly, these small R2-D2 clones were a treat to observe as they danced and raced across an iPad screen and a piece of white paper.
The Ozobot comes with three games and an “exploration” app, and the battery lasts for 35 minutes on continuous operation. The Ozobot is scheduled to launch Aug. 1 at New York’s Museum of Modern Art, and will be available for general order Sept. 1. (One pack, $50; two pack, $100)
The AwoX StriimLIGHT (SL-B10), a Bluetooth speaker that doubles as a lightbulb, is a clever solution for those seeking to consolidate their home devices. The StriimLIGHT fits into a light bulb socket and features an LED light and a 10-watt speaker, and is paired with a Bluetooth media player (which could be your smart phone). The device’s volume and power state can be controlled by an included remote. ($99, available now)
Check out our wireless speaker system buying guide and Ratings.
Voyce is a noninvasive (no probes, no pins) dog collar that monitors various aspects of your dog’s daily life, including heart and respiratory rate, and calories burned. The logged data, which can be viewed on a mobile device or desktop computer, gives the owner a snapshot of daily activity trends.
The collar won't give owners health alerts for unusual trends (because of too many false-positives), the data is valuable for establishing a health baseline during veterinary evaluations. The service also includes specialized advice for the type of dog you have from affiliated veterinarians. The collar’s battery lasts a week, and it's dustproof and waterproof (up to 3 feet). It fits on 12-to-22-inch necks; the company expects to release a smaller version too, for lap dogs and cats. ($299 and a $15-per-month membership fee, not yet available.)