Skip to main content

CES 2017: Highlights From January 4 Include VR, AR, And XR

Somebody ought to write a novel called Sleepless at CES. They'd have to cut some of the drearier parts out of the experience, of course, but surely there's enough to be found in the crowded exhibition halls to warrant a couple thousand words about the latest and greatest in consumer technology.

For now we'll have to settle for news stories detailing the most interesting things at CES 2017. The first day centered on Intel 7th generation processors (Kaby Lake) and the products rushing to support them; the second day is more focused on the wonderful world of virtual, augmented, and mixed reality. There were other announcements, yes, but the Tom's Hardware team spent a lot of time with the VR and AR and XR products you'll want to know about.

I Reject Your Reality And Substitute My Own

Much of the XR focus today revolved around eye-tracking technologies and their spread, including using it for foveated rendering. Other highlights include new ways to create XR experiences, a box that lets you interact with virtual objects, and the first phone to combine Google's Tango and Daydream platforms into one device. Here they are:

Still Drowning In Kaby Lake

Yep, the updates to support Intel's lates processors keep comin' in. There weren't as many announcements related to the new processors as there were yesterday, but that doesn't mean Kaby Lake hasn't continued to beat on the shore of our consciousness... or let us write bad metaphors. Anyway:

And So They Said: Accessorize!

It wouldn't be CES without a veritable flood of accessories. Whether it's companies RGB-ing all the things (PSUs anyone?), embracing the shift to curved monitors, or trying to help our feeble hands keep pace with our need for more computer time, CES 2017's accessory extravaganza officially began today:

  • canadianvice
    ASUS made a solid looking phone, then they committed the unforgivable sin: they skinned it.

    Barring ROM devs like CM, nobody has yet done Android better than Google. Just stop. The OEMs don't get it - their interfaces are confusing trash vs. vanilla Android, and they add very little of use.

    This has made finding a good phone really, really hard....
    Reply
  • anbello262
    Actually, I have used both "stock" android (lollipop to be more specific) and ZenUI (both lollipop and marhsmallow), and I would chose ZenUI any time, no hesitation.
    With stock android I had to download third party apps to have that level of confort, everything the way I liked it, and shortcuts where I needed them. With ZenUI I have everything ready, and can customize everything (no third party app needed). So I guess it's pretty much up to subjective opinion...
    Reply
  • therealduckofdeath
    Canadianvice, Google don't even use stock Android themselves on the Pixel phone. It's a custom ROM with exclusive software features. Why? Because selling a phone that works exactly like the competitor's phone is doomed to fail. What's the selling point? A different logo on the back? The reason Samsung dominates on smartphones is because they've never been afraid to do their own thing.
    Reply
  • canadianvice
    19108379 said:
    Canadianvice, Google don't even use stock Android themselves on the Pixel phone. It's a custom ROM with exclusive software features. Why? Because selling a phone that works exactly like the competitor's phone is doomed to fail. What's the selling point? A different logo on the back? The reason Samsung dominates on smartphones is because they've never been afraid to do their own thing.

    You seriously think it's their alterations to Android that pushed them ahead? Samsung is in the lead for a few reasons.

    - They do make some of the highest spec phones
    - They're a recognized brand name
    - People are easily won by big numbers. You could practically destroy android and as long as texting, fb, and photos were acceptable, you'd sell like hotcakes.

    Their interface is still bad. There's no two ways about it. I've got their Tab A, touchwiz is laggy and I absolutely hate it interface-wise. However, without root I'm still stuck with a bunch of their garbage regardless of apps to paint over.

    @TheRealDuckofDeath - Perhaps I should elaborate. I consider skinned to be significantly deviated from Android, as is Sense or Touchwiz or ZenUI. When I refer to a "pure" Android experience, I'm referring to Motorola, Google, and similar manus who make extremely small adjustment to the overall Rom. For all intents and purposes, Google does not deviate in any meaningful way from Android. They have a few of their own apps, but that's fine, those can always be removed with root. Moto isn't stock either, but I doubt anyone would call them to mind as a skinned rom.

    The problem is when you alter the actual OS underpinnings so much that you can't use something like xposed. It takes choice away from the consumers, and considering it's the positive addition of effort to make an inferior skin for most of these OEMs, it's nonsensical.

    Either way, I'll crusade to my dying day to make sub-1080 and skinning a capital crime.
    Reply
  • anbello262
    I have also tried (not owned) Samsung phones, and I really disliked it. It felt like it turned a $600 phone into a $300 one. Still worked relatively fine, but with that kind of hardware it should have been a lot better.
    Now I'm on a $200 phone that gives me a smoother experience than that with Samsung (although I admit that I have experienced some glitches now and then, so stability might not be perfect, but I believe that its x86 processor is to blame).
    Reply