It's been more than a year since Samsung released its Android powered Galaxy Camera. And despite our initial scepticism, we were actually impressed that the merger of a mobile device and point-and-shoot camera was so well executed. The weird thing was wonderful, and, according to Samsung, it sold pretty well! Which is why the Galaxy Camera 2 is only a lightly modified version of the earlier success.
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The new Samsung NX30 is an improved reboot of the company's NX20, a mirrorless interchangeable-lens camera that took beautiful photos but came with its share of foibles as well. The new camera adds a new autofocus system, and some improved hardware. Samsung's introducing a bunch of new lenses as well. Is it enough to make Samsung's mirrorless cameras catch on?
The Microsoft Surface was the biggest new tech of 2012. Its first iteration — Surface RT, a confusingly named and marketed tablet-with-a-keyboard — bombed. Pretty hard. So why believe in the full-powered Surface Pro? Simple. It's a braver and more divergent take on the laptop-tablet convergence than anyone else has risked so far.
The Samsung NX300's a big revamp of last year's NX210, including a lot of common sense improvements to Samsung's mid-range mirrorless camera. And then there's the 3D photo and movie mode. Nobody asked for a brilliant new technology that uses a single lens to capture 3D images, but Samsung made it anyway. And it actually works!
Remember when Sony could do no wrong? Back in the days of awesome CRT TVs, Discmans, Walkmans, miniDisc players and killer sound systems? The shine has been off Sony's apple over the last few years, but ever since last year's IFA tech fair in Germany, we've been seeing hints of the Sony sparkle here and there. With the release of the Sony Xperia Z, however, it's confirmed: the magic is back at Sony, and this is the best handset it has ever made.
The Razer Edge is a gaming tablet. That much you know. But here's the thing: It's so well made — and has such a complete notion of what it is and what it wants to do — that it might not just be "the gaming tablet," but the single best Windows 8 convertible we've seen.
Nvidia's Project Shield is a curious little device, attempting to toss its hat into a bunch of rings at once. It's taking shots at handheld gaming, console gaming, tablets and phones. For the most part, it's holding under the strain, but it's hard to imagine going out of your way to use it versus any of those things it's trying to replace.
We checked out Tobii last year, and it was pretty rough around the edges — just a prototype. But now the eye-control tech wizards at Tobii are back with a polished product, and I feel like I'm in Star Trek.
At CES every year, we cover hundreds of products. They're usually only barely differentiated from previous models. But sometimes, companies trot out devices and technology that could bring something new and wonderful to the market — it's just too bad the odds of this vapourware ever being for sale are slim to nil. Here's the best fantasy tech that wowed the gadget-lusting masses in 2013.
Mooly Eden steps out of the world of transistors and microprocessors for a moment. "If you want a simple explanation of what we're doing, just look to Asimov," the head of Intel's Perceptual Computing push says, explaining. "Or Star Trek, Star Wars and Avatar. The ideas have been in science fiction for years, and now they're becoming fact."