Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2016: Does It Affect My Purchasing Decisions?

Coming to the Consumer Electronics Show is like stepping into a geeky adults’ version of a candy shop, except that some of the candy you see won’t be on sale for several months (if it reaches the market at all), and some is priced at several multiples of what a reasonable person would pay for it.

A lot of what I liked at CES I will not truly consider buying at this time. For example:

  • Drones I appreciate, but would personally have neither space nor time to play with.
  • Sphero products are adorable. I can see justifying owing one if I was a Star Wars enthusiast (I would then get this one of course), or if I was parent to a child who would enjoy playing with such a cool toy. I am neither of these, so no Sphero for me.
  • Garmin’s augmented reality solution for cyclists is intiguing, but I would want multiple people to try it out and to write detailed reviews on it before I would seriously consider getting it. Does the augmented reality display really help you keep your eyes on the road, or does it end up being a distraction? Does the device work well in all light conditions? Is it really comfortable to wear, – on long rides, with cold-weather clothing, when sweating heavily?

As a consumer, based on my CES experience and based on my personal specific consumer needs, I will:

  • Buy: a Skulpt gadget for measuring my body fat and muscle quality, the information I would love to have for my triathlon training. I never mastered body fat calipers (is it me, or can they be made to show any number one wishes to see?), and was sufficiently impressed with the Skulpt device when I tried it on the CES floor.
  • Get an upgrade on: my Polar sports watch. The variety of sports watches displayed at CES made me realize that my trusted Polar set has become a dinosaur. It will take some research for me to decide on what specifically to upgrade my Polar to (perhaps a newer Polar model will do?), but I am definitely in need of an upgrade.
  • Wish for but not buy: a Quantum Dot TV set. The depth of colors on quantum dot displays impressed me far more than any other display quality improvement over the last few years. I am not ready to pay the price of these displays for the experience, but am a bit envious of people who are.
  • Root for (and possibly buy products from, if/when said products are on the market): multiple start-ups seen in the CES’s startup Eureka Park area. Multiple not-yet-ready-to-hit-the-market technologies presented there were the devices that I would not mind having.
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