Technology is making a splash again in Las Vegas. The  Consumer Electronics Show is in full swing (and a little rainy), which means there's a slew of new gadgets to consider. Here are my top picks so far--the devices you might actually buy (or crave) in 2018.

1. Motorola Keyboard Mod

I won't say this could change computing as we know it, but there's a chance at least. The Keyboard Mod works with the Moto Z smartphone. You snap the phone onto the keyboard and can start typing in Google Docs and check your email. Why is a game-changer? If your phone works for real work when you travel, why bother with a laptop anymore?

2. Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

Don't say laptops never change. The super-thin Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 uses a new type of keyboard where magnets push the keys up and down instead of the typical plastic levers. It's a sign of things to come: The processing power, even at  a size of only .62 inches, matches or exceeds much thicker notebooks.

3. Lenovo Smart Display

I like the idea of having one of these small displays, which lets you talk to the Google Assistant bot, right on your desk. You can ask about directions to a meeting or set a reminder. Plus, it looks quite modern with a white and black design and a speaker right on front. It's one step closer to a future where we don't need smartphones.

4. Peloton Tread

I'm excited to try out this treadmill, which could work as a workout machine at the office and connects you to live or recorded classes from a studio. There's a social side as well. Other fitness nuts can connect through the app and in classes. I'll go a step further and say this treadmill could work as an ideal stand-up desk (although it's not designed to do that). 

5. Byton SUV

What would happen if this highly-connected electric SUV gave Tesla something to think about? It has a good chance based on the initial peek--an on-board high-speed connected network that beams 4K video onto screens for every passenger and autonomous driving tech. It's supposed to come out next year and cost $45,000.

6. Sony Aibo

The return of the king? Maybe. This robo-dog now adapts to the environment and your own interactions. It uses 22-axis points that move in unison to convince you it looks real (or at least realistic). The original Aibo did not benefit from cloud-based deep learning algorithms like the new model will. It's a toy...but it's also a convincing social companion.

Published on: Jan 10, 2018