As the 2012 Consumer Electronics Show gets underway in Las Vegas, Mike Yawney, Citytv’s technology specialist, has scoured the floor for this year’s must-have tech toys.



Nest:
You have never seen a thermostat quite like this. Designed by Tony Fadell, the man who designed the original iPod, Nest is the world’s first learning thermostat. Set the temperature in your home and over the course of a few days Nest will learn your climate preferences and start adjusting the temperature on its own. Since Nest is connected to your WiFi network, you have the ability to control the temperature in your home from just about anywhere using a smartphone or tablet. Nest will also tell you when you’re saving energy to help you save money. You’re going to need that cash, since the thermostat will set you back $249.

Samsung Upgradeable TVs: Did you buy a TV for Christmas? The reality is that within a few months it will already be outdated. Samsung wants to make sure you don’t have buyers remorse this year by allowing you to continuously upgrade your television. Many of its 2012 models will feature a slot on the rear where a special upgrade module can be inserted. This means modules with new software features, even faster processors can be purchased each year to keep your TV up to date. The updates will cost you, but at least you’ll have the latest and greatest features on your TV.

55-inch OLED TV: This isn’t the first time OLED TVs have shown up at CES, but this is the first year they have reached such a large size. Last year, the ultra-thin televisions hit the 21-inch mark, this year we’re finally starting to see 55-inch panels. The TVs are a mere four-mm thin, weigh roughly 7.5 KGs and are very energy efficient. On top of that, the display produces an incredible picture with some of the best colours you’ve ever seen. The only real drawback may be the price. A couple of years ago Sony sold an 11-inch model for $2,100 so you can expect these large panels will cost you a pretty penny when they hit Canada later this year.

Lytro Light Field Camera: Forget what you know about traditional cameras – the Lytro camera changes everything. After a picture has been taken the camera uses a series of algorithms to let users refocus a picture. Who cares if a picture comes out blurry; you can fix it afterward! Focus, refocus and have fun with your pictures. The Lytro light field camera is already available for pre-order.

 

Sony Walkman Z: Sony’s Walkman Z runs Android 2.3 (Gingerbread)
and gives users access to the Android marketplace and thousands of apps
without having to own an actual Android phone. Oh, and it also plays
music!

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