CES 2021 is here and the world’s largest annual technology show has never looked so different. But while this year’s event ditches the packed Las Vegas ballrooms in favor of an all-online experience, there are as many cool gadgets and exciting innovations to get excited about as ever.
From eye-catching 8K TVs to laptops and desktops that make working from home more hassle-free than ever, we̵
With that in mind, here are our picks for the best gadgets from CES 2021 that you will actually buy this year.
Samsung Galaxy Chromebook is our current recommendation for the best 2-in-1 Chromebook you can buy, but it sells for a steep $ 999. The new Galaxy Chromebook 2 retains the best aspects of its predecessor (including a vibrant screen and a stunning Fiesta Red design), while starting at a much more affordable $ 549 with more modest specs. However, do not call this a downgrade – Galaxy Chromebook 2 is the first Chromebook with a QLED screen that delivers much more vibrant colors and finer details than you find on a standard LCD portable screen. The Chromebook 2’s beautiful screen and smart keyboard worked well in our early practical tests, and its eye-catching design makes the other Chromebooks in CES look dull.
If you’re looking for a game monitor to use with your PS5 or Xbox Series X, the new Acer Nitro XV282 KV should be on your radar. This 28-inch screen features the latest HDMI 2.1 standard, which you will have to take full advantage of the sleek 120 frame-per-second gameplay that the new PlayStation and Xbox consoles are capable of. It is also a great option for PC gamers with AMD FreeSync Premium technology for eliminating screen tearing and 1 ms response time for minimal input delay. The Nitro XV 282K KV secured our best CES choice because the HDMI 2.1 support makes it one of the first monitors to make your next-generation console game as smooth as possible – and could usher in a new wave of gaming monitors optimized for PS5 and Xbox Series X. Keep an eye out for it in May with a starting price of $ 899.
Like most other smart vacuum cleaners, Samsung’s latest does not have the most beautiful name. But after a demo and a personal briefing (completed safely), the JetBot 90 AI + proved to bring a lot to the table. It bypasses other smart vacuum cleaners that just have LiDAR sensors by throwing cameras and object recognition. In this way, it can actually identify what is in the way and change direction. Obstacle obstacles are * the chef’s kiss * on JetBot 90 for this very reason – it can work around a cable, a pair of sneakers or the dreaded doggy do-do. It even sends an alert via the connected app to tell you what it ran into. This is the first vacuum that has this real object to avoid object on the next level, so it pretty much causes other smart vacs to look pretty stupid. We do not have prices yet, but the JetBot 90 AI + has a feature set that leaves other smart vacuum cleaners in the dirt.
Laptop webcams are generally awful, which is an issue HP seems to be solving with the new HP Elite Dragonfly Max. This powerful 2-in-1 notebook features a 5MP webcam that, combined with your laptop’s advanced AI-powered audio technology, will make you see and sound as presentable as possible during important Zoom meetings. Combine it with a 13.3-inch screen with features like HP Eye Ease and HP Sure View Reflect to protect your documents from snoopers while minimizing eye strain and making the Dragonfly Max the ultimate home laptop. Although we did not test directly, the Dragonfly Max’s design, specifications, and feature set seem to compete with the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon – our best laptop choice for business users – making it the most impressive laptop we’ve seen coming out of CES so far.
The UltraSharp 38 screen not only gives you an expansive screen, but it has the specifications to suit. This 37.5-inch WQHD + curved screen has a resolution of 3840 X 1600. Although this is not exactly 4K, with the high resolution we fully expect that it is sharp and probably difficult to select individual pixels on. The panel should allow it to produce a wide range of colors like previous UltraSharp monitors, one of our current top picks for the best monitors. Those working in creative apps like Photoshop and Illustrator can handle detailed edits with relative ease. And in everyday life, we expect it to provide plenty of space for emails, spreadsheets and web browsing. The real kicker is the built-in productivity hub – there are, among other things, two HDMIs, a DisplayPort, two USB-Cs, an Ethernet connector and four USB-A ports. It is an all-in-one docking solution that we feel will truly be a plug-and-play experience. It’s not something every screen out there can match. If you’ve looked at an aging screen and struggled with all sorts of dongles, it feels like the complete package. We look forward to testing the UltraSharp 38 screen when it launches on January 28th.
Samsung’s Neo QLED aims to increase brightness, color vibrancy and deepen black levels compared to previous generations. It does not with brand new technology or even a dramatic new processor, but with miniLED. Samsung’s Quantum Mini LEDs are approx. 1/40 the size of a conventional LED backlight and removes much of the packaging. Shrinking size makes it possible to place more LEDs inside, and the TV can control the LED-by-LED lighting. This is closer to the pixel-by-pixel image creation found on OLEDs. We got to see it in person and the 8K Neo QLED drew our eyes with the increased level of vibration without causing flowering or leakage. Given Samsung’s expertise in image production and upscaling, we have a feeling this will excel over our current overall choice of best TV, the TCL 6 series. The specificity that Samsung can offer with miniLEDs should increase the level of clarity and deliver brightness to a new level. We do not know the price yet, but Samsung’s Neo QLEDs will be available later this spring.