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CES 2020: Top 5 OMG Moments

My first day back in the office after CES 2020, and a dense fog drifts through my brain like the schizophrenic storm that blanketed most of the U.S. after the event. It was wild, chaotic, mind-numbing, exhausting, and ultra-super-fabulous-cool. My colleague and I wandered, wide-eyed, the expansive, multinational jam-packed halls, the geeky girls we are, with big, goofy smiles on our faces, ready to run down the stairs on Christmas morning to witness the magic awaiting us. It was my first CES, but most certainly not my last. There were brilliant, amazing displays of futuristic tech, just as you'd expect. Around every corner, ultra-spectacular, mind-bending, worth-the-journey wowzas. Here are my top 5 OMG moments from the most wondrous tech show on the planet.

1. LG’s Edge of the Earth
LG’s new wave display was front and center in the central hall and lucky for me, the very first thing I saw. It was awe-inspiring, all-encompassing pie-in-the-sky brilliance, making you feel one with the universe, and all its natural and out-of-this-world wonders. It took my breath away, and everyone else standing in range, as evidenced by the sheer number of phones glowing in mid-air and the hush of the crowd. All you could hear was the perfectly-paired audio serving to magnify the magnificent.  See it here.

2. Hey Google, tell Alexa I’m hungry.
Voice was everywhere, in everything. The two elephants in the room played it a bit safe, since the story this year was all about data and privacy. But voice was ubiquitous at the show, and left me wondering how long until it’s everywhere in our daily lives (or where consumers will want it and where they won’t). Most exciting on the Amazon front is the company’s partnership with GM to bring voice to cars, from searching for restaurants and ordering food to controlling your smart home devices and making that dreaded dentist appointment, all will be handled sans hands. Check out the videos below for full booth tours and more insight. Best Google CES 2020 | Video Best Amazon CES 2020 Video

3. Hello, Ballie!
Samsung’s version of a robot as a life companion, the adorable yellow “Ballie” is supposed to understand and support your needs, and run your smart home for you. They had me with the adorable dog promo video. And yes, there are many smart components that would need to sync with Ballie to make it fully-functional, but it seems like the beginning of something awesome, not to mention awesomely cute. Watch Samsung’s Ballie Video

4. Urban Air Mobility from Hyundai & Uber
Autonomous vehicles were everywhere on the show floor and yes, they were cool. But even cooler than that (to me, at least) is a kick-ass combo of “urban air mobility, purpose-built vehicles and a hub” brilliantly demonstrated by Hyundai. The company has uniquely partnered with Uber to usher in the “era of liberation from gridlock and democratization of flight.” This means a 90-minute commute could take you only 10 minutes. Since seeing is believing, check this out. And just imagine the ways the world, and your life, will change when this is our reality.

5. Our Parallel Reality
There was only one airline at CES 2020, and dare I say, it stole the show. My beloved Delta Airlines was full-throttle, not only delivering the keynote, but demonstrating how parallel realities can be made real via a partnership with Misapplied Sciences. Seemingly straight out of a Haruki Murakami novel (minus the cats), Misapplied Sciences mind-bending technology allows a hundred or more viewers to simultaneously share a digital display, sign, or light and each see something different. Four people in the same demo saw a single-screen, with real-time flight information customized to each viewer uniquely. We were able to see our destination, gate, luggage and other information, in the language of our choice, on the same screen at the same time as others were seeing information tailored to their own travel experiences. It was wild. And no matter how many times I explain it, I still can’t do it justice. Heck, I even doubt what I saw with my own eyes. Until I see the demo again on YouTube. If you still don’t believe me, take a trip to Detroit this summer, where Delta plans to pilot it. I may have to go see it for myself (again!) to believe it. And if parallel reality isn’t your thing (and how could it not be?), then maybe the airline’s first-of-its-kind wearable robotic exoskeleton to bolster employee strength and safety is.

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