From car mats that charge mobile devices to self-focusing glasses, this year’s Consumer Electronics Show had something for everybody, including small business owners. Here’s a look at some of the gadgets to come out of CES that could make small business owners’ workday all the more productive.
For road warriors, having to charge mobile devices in the car’s cigarette lighter is a hassle. After all, there is only a limited amount of places to charge wireless devices on the go. But GM is aiming to change that. The auto maker inked a partnership with Israeli-based Powermat to put its charging technology in the Chevy Volt electric car. With the technology, a car driver could place their iPhone, tablet, MP3 player, and a host of other mobile devices, on the car’s floor mat or even a shelf to charge them. While the Chevy Volt will be the first car to incorporate the technology, GM plans to include it across its product line. GM is also investing $5 million in Powermat to accelerate the development of the technology.
Smartphones were in abundance at CES but Motorola stole the spotlight. Dubbed the Atrix, this 4G smartphone boasts a dual core processor, which gives the phone up to two gigahertz of processing power and 1GB of RAM. The phone is equipped with Motorola’s Web-top application that runs a full Mozilla Firefox browser and supports Adobe Flash--making business documents easier to read and edit. The Android-based phone has an optional HD Multimedia Dock and Laptop Dock. The phone allows you to connect your phone to a laptop or HD monitor or TV, giving users a bigger screen, keyboard and trackpad. And here’s the cherry on top: the phone has front and rear cameras so that you can have video chats and record in HD.
Many small business owners find themselves out and about but still wanting accessing to their desktop. Splashtop Remote app lets you remotely control your Windows PC on your smartphone. It displays your desktop on the phone and gives you access to data and software wherever you may be. That means you can work on Windows documents stored on your computer from your phone. The app, which costs $1.99 on iTunes and $4.99 in Android Market, was Apple’s most popular business app in October.
Glasses that turn into sunglasses when you come into the contact with the sun is nothing new. But what about ones that are self focusing? While computers and smartphones were center stage at CES, PixelOptics emPower glasses also got a lot of attention. Thanks to proprietary PixelOptics technology, these glasses focus within seconds to reach optimal vision no matter where you are looking. Don’t want the glasses to focus for you? You can turn the technology off. The technology does need to be powered, which makes the hidden rechargeable battery handy. The frames will be available in metal and plastic and rimless and rimmed.
It may not be a gadget, but Intel’s (NASDAQ:INTC) new microprocessor, dubbed Sandy Bridge, promises to speed up your computer, which in turn, boosts productivity. The chip’s technology lets each core of the processor work on two tasks at the same time meaning you can do more in the same amount of time. The chip will automatically give your PC a boost when you need it. Not to mention the graphics processor built into the chip lets you more quickly create videos, watch your PC on the TV and view 3D movies all on a laptop or desktop.
We found five gadgets at last week’s Consumer Electronics Show that are sure to make a small business owner’s life a little easier.