6 Cutting-Edge Gadgets to Watch

Microsoft SmartGlass
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Microsoft SmartGlass

What It Is: Microsoft's SmartGlass is a new technology that takes the Xbox 360--the company's hit home entertainment device--well beyond games. The application will let you turn a smartphone or tablet into a super-powerful controller that's connected to your HDTV. With gestures on your mobile device, you’ll be able to control media--photos, videos, music, and games--on your big screen. When the technology debuts later this year, you’ll be able to use it with the iPhone, iPad, Android devices, and Windows 8 tablets.

Why It's One to Watch: SmartGlass points to a larger business trend: mobile devices controlling other products. You might be able to tap directly into your office printer and copier next, using your phone screen.