The Consumer Electronics Show, held annually in January in sunny Las Vegas, is one of the biggest tech events of the year. Almost every major technology brand is at the event, ready to show off their newest products, some of which could be the ever-fabled “next big thing” in 2019.
As with most new technology releases, many CES 2019 products are shrouded in mystery. Even behind-the-scenes here at Android Authority, we often make appointments to meet with companies and don’t necessarily know all the details of what we’ll see until right before the show begins.
Of course, we’ll be bringing you coverage of all the major announcements as they happen and we have a crack team on the show floor to sample all the best new tech so we can share our impressions with you, our awesome readers.
Below, you’ll find our roundup of everything announced so far and everything else we expect to see at the Las Vegas show.
The CES 2019 showroom floor is now officially open, but you’ll hear about most of the announcements from the key press events that place between Sunday, January 6 to Wednesday, January 8.
While Android Authority is traditionally a mobile-first publication, the reality is that mobile news only makes up a small portion of what will be shown at CES 2019. You can expect announcements related to PC and gaming hardware, smart home, VR, AR, car technology, robots, and lots of random things like electric toothbrushes or smart rubber duckies (yes, really). Most of the year’s biggest mobile releases — including the Samsung Galaxy S10 — will happen a bit later in the year, likely at or around Mobile World Congress 2019, which happens at the end of February.
Obviously mobile is the bread and butter of Android Authority but at this year’s show we’ll also be covering plenty of other exciting technologies such as smart home, laptops, gaming computers, television/monitor technology, and just anything that we feel our audience would find compelling.
Google had a huge exhibit space at CES 2019 (complete with its own roller coaster) and it had plenty of announcements as well. One was that it expects its Google Assistant digital helper to be available on one billion devices by the end of January 2019, which is a huge jump from the 500 million device milestone it achieved in May 2018.
Google Assistant was all over CES 2019, as tons of companies announced its use in smart speakers, connected home products and more. That includes the long-awaited support on the Sonos One and Sonos Beam speakers. Google also announced more features for Google Assistant this week, including its integration into Google Maps, and how it can help you check into your airline flight. Android users will let you use Google Assistant to respond to text messages on your phone, via SMS, WhatsApp, Messenger, Hangouts, Viber, Telegram, Android Messages, and more. Verizon also announced the Google Assistant-based HumX, which will give you info on your car’s diagnostics when plugged in.
If you own a Google Home smart speaker or Smart Display, Google announced a new Assistant feature that might come in handy: Interpreter Mode. It will offer audio translations of someone else’s language into your local language on Google Home speakers, and text translations on Smart Displays.
Also, Android phones will soon get an update that will allow people to set up their phone so they can access features on Google Assistant without having to go out of the lock screen, including search results, setting up alarms and more.
Finally, Google announced Google Assistant Connect at CES 2019. It will allow companies to connect to an Assistant-based smart speaker or Smart Display without the need to include their own speakers and microphones. For example, the smart speaker could connect to an e-ink display to show information like the current weather conditions. More information on Assistant Connect will be revealed later this year.
Originally, there were rumors that an LG foldable smartphone would debut at CES 2019. That didn’t turn out to be the case, however.
Instead, we got LG’s usual scattershot-style presentation with all kinds of announcements stumbling up against each other with very little connective tissue aside from the word “ThinQ” being repeated every 10 seconds.
The big reveal was the LG Signature OLED TV R — a TV with a rollable OLED display that hides inside the stand when you’re not watching. LG also announced that its new TVs will support AirPlay 2 and Apple HomeKit, which was kind of a running theme for TV makers at CES 2019.
As well as a raft of other announcements relating to its TV tech (including 11 new OLED/LCD models), LG also showcased its new smart alerts system for home appliances and a smart beer maker. No really, it’s called the LG HomeBrew and it sounds awesome.
With all that and the three soundbars with Google Assistant and Dolby Atmos support, LG had a fairly busy CES 2019, but aside from the rollable TV, it didn’t really deliver much of a wow factor.
As expected, we didn’t see the Samsung Galaxy S10 at CES 2019, but the South Korean giant still had plenty to show off.
In addition to the 75-inch, modular MicroLED TV revealed ahead of its press conference, Samsung brought a whopping 98-inch QLED 8K TV to Las Vegas with HDMI 2.1 support.
Elsewhere in TV land, Samsung confirmed that its smart TVs will soon offer iTunes movies and TV shows and support Airplay 2. You’ll also be able to control Samsung smart TVs via Google Assistant- or Amazon Alexa-powered devices.
New smart fridges and robots also debuted at the show, as well as the Notebook 9 Pen and a brand new Odyssey gaming laptop.
Samsung also quietly confirmed in a press release that its Bixby assistant will soon be able to control Google apps.
Lenovo always reveals a ton of new and upcoming products at CES, and 2019 was no exception. That included some new PC laptops, including some new high-end notebooks made for the growing hardcore gaming audience that also have NVIDIA’s new GeForce RTX 20 Series discrete graphics for laptops. It also revealed a couple of nice gaming PC monitors, including a huge 43.4 inch screen.
The company also introduced the Lenovo Smart Clock, a small smart speaker with a 4-inch display that can also serve as your bedside alarm clock. You will use voice commands for the most part with this clock, powered by Google Assistant, which it comes out this spring for $79.99, which also makes it the cheapest Google Assistant smart display-based speaker you can get.
Lenovo also announced new Yoga PC products, including an all-in-one PC with a big 27-inch screen that’s made for digital artists. Finally, it announced two Smart Tab Android tablets that come with their own charging dock that doubles as a smart speaker as well. Both are due for release in March.
Sony had a strange CES 2019, eschewing its usual flurry of announcements for something of a victory lap.
The Japanese giant talked up the success of its audio division, its hit feature film Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, and boasted to the world that it has now sold more than 91.6 million PS4 consoles worldwide.
Of course, there wasn’t any mention of Sony’s flagging smartphone division. In fact, the Xperia brand was entirely absent from the show for the first time in years. We did get a surprise appearance from singer/rapper Pharrell though, so there’s that.
As for what products were announced, Sony revealed its first 8K TV sets, some new 4K TVs, and a whole bunch of audio products.
HTC’s Vive brand delivered two new virtual reality headsets at CES 2019 — the Vive Pro Eye and the Vive Cosmos.
The Vive Pro Eye is an upgraded version of HTC’s flagship head mounted display and features eye-tracking technology.
The Vive Cosmos, meanwhile, is aimed at entry level users with a much simpler set-up procedure and compatibility with a much wider range of PCs.
Pricing and availability for both the Vive Pro Eye and Vive Cosmos have yet to be confirmed.
While we already saw the RTX 2080m, RTX 2080 TI, the RTX 2070, and the Titan RTX in 2018, Nvidia saved the least powerful member of the series — the RTX 2060 — until its CES 2019 keynote demo. The company showcased how ray tracing correctly renders reflections and refractions.
Huang demonstrated that the RTX 2060 can run Battlefield V at 60 frames per second using a 1440p resolution with ray tracing switched on. The GPU is expected to provide a huge boost for gaming laptop manufacturers and cut down on the bulky builds we’re used to seeing from the product category.
Nvidia also revealed it’s working on drivers to support A-Sync monitors. Nvidia’s intent is to bring G-Sync capabilities to these panels so gamers aren’t forced to purchase a new display. The company already tested 400 but for now only 12 qualify. Nvidia will dub these supported panels as “G-Sync Compatible monitors.”
Unsurprisingly it was Razer that led the charge for the new Nvidia RTX 20 series laptop announcements with the reveal of the Razer Blade 15 Advanced.
The Razer Blade 15 Advanced lineup are now offered in RTX 2060, RTX 2070 with Max-Q, and RTX 2080 with Max-Q configurations. The new RTX 20 family brings several improvements over older Nvidia GPUs including real-time ray tracing, artificial intelligence, and programmable shading.
The Blade 15 Advanced lineup are powered by the Intel Core i7-8750H6, feature 16GB of dual-channel system memory (upgradeable to 64GB), and up to 512 GB of SSD storage. The Blade 15 Advanced feature a 15.6-inch Full HD display with a 144Hz refresh rate, though 4K variants of each GTX 20 model will also be offered.
In addition to a new esports-ready Razer Raptor monitor, Razer also teased a Blade 15 with a 15.6-inch Full HD display capable of 240Hz refresh rates and a second Blade 15 variant with a 4K OLED touch display.
You can read more about all of Razer’s new products and prototypes in our hands-on.
Intel’s CES 2019 press conference centered on its new Ice Lake laptop chips. The mobile chip range is Intel’s first “volume” 10nm PC processor for thin laptops, which should provide better battery life and less thermal-induced throttling.
Ice Lake uses Intel’s Sunny Cove micro-architecture, which allows for more tasks to be executed in parallel, and packs algorithms to reduce latency. The range also promises faster AI performance, Thunderbolt 3 integration, and Wi-Fi 6 support.
Intel also announced a 10nm Snow Ridge SoC for 5G base stations, and 10nm Cascade Lake Xeon and 10nm Lakefield processors.
If we had to summarize Intel’s CES 2019 in a word? That’d be ’10nm.’
Over the past year, Huawei has been dogged with controversies surrounding its alleged ties with the Chinese government. Several countries — including the United States — have barred the use of Huawei networking equipment, citing security concerns. The government even stepped in to prevent Huawei smartphones from coming to the country.
But that didn’t stop Huawei from bringing new wares to CES 2019, albeit in a more muted fashion than it would have no doubt liked.
While there were no smartphone announcements from either Huawei or its Honor sub-brand, the Chinese giant did have new laptops and tablets to show off.
The MateBook 13 is Huawei’s latest mid-range laptop/MacBook Air-rival that sits somewhere between the company’s ultra-slim MateBook X and its semi-premium MateBook D.
Huawei also revealed the family-friendly Huawei MediaPad M5 Lite, which is built from durable aluminium to protect it from bumps and bruises from younger members of the family.
Acer introduced the Chromebook 315 during CES 2019. Scheduled to arrive in Q1 2019, it will be the company’s first Chromebook based on an all-in-one “APU” processor manufactured by AMD. Acer typically guns for Intel-based processors in Chromebooks, but the company chose custom APUs for this model to better support Chrome- and Android-based apps. APUs (standing for “Accelerated Processing Unit”) combine a CPU and GPU in a single chip.
Acer also announced a new Windows 10 laptop, the Swift 7. The 14-inch 1,920 x 1,080 touchscreen notebook has very thin bezels, allowing it to have a 92 percent screen-to-body ratio. The body of the notebook is also very thin at just 9.95mm and is incredibly light at just 1.96 pounds, as it is made of magnesium-lithium and magnesium-aluminum alloys.
HP went big with Chromebooks at CES 2019 with the announcements of the HP Chromebook x360 14 G1 and HP Chromebook 14.
The latter comes with either AMD’s A4 or the A6 series of processors inside, along with either Radeon R4 or R5 GPUs. It will also have a 14-inch 1,366 x 768 display with a 180-degree hinge, along with 4GB of RAM and 32GB of SSD storage. The HP Chromebook 14 will also weigh 3.40 pounds and have a top battery life of 9 hours and 15 minutes.
The more powerful Chromebook x360 14 G1 comes with Intel’s 8th generation Pentium, Core i3, i5, or i7 CPUs inside, depending on which model you want. It has 16GB of RAM and either 32GB or 64GB of onboard storage.
Every year there seems to be a primary focus that’s hot and new, or trying to make new waves at least. Past years have focused a lot on AR/VR and smart home. This year, we expect much of the same, with a greater focus on refinement than emerging tech categories. Voice-powered devices will likely make a huge splash at CES once more, making their way into TVs, appliances, and even random things like toilets (which actually happened last year).
Of course you can expect at least a few new trends attempt to take off at CES. We expect foldables will get at least a little attention, though early whispers indicate it’ll probably be companies like Royale showing off its achievements.
While we can’t cover every rumor, below we’ll make a few predictions for some of the bigger companies that will be in attendance at CES this year.
BlackBerry continues to surprise us with successful releases of Android smartphones with physical keyboards — something most would assume wouldn’t sell well in 2018, let alone 2019. That being said, we don’t expect to see a new BlackBerry smartphone at CES 2019. Instead, we expect BlackBerry to push its automotive-based software, BlackBerry QNX.
Alcatel will also likely also make a few announcements in the smartphone, tablet, or smartwatch categories — at least given what we’ve seen from them in past years.
Last year was Google’s first time at CES. While the show was mostly a showcase for existing Google Assistant products, its biggest announcement was Google Pay and smart displays. Although there haven’t been any specific rumors about Google this year, we think it’s pretty likely the focus will be on Assistant once again.
Given what we know from CES 2018, most of these Assistant announcements will probably be in the form of partnerships, but it’s certainly possible Google could have some of its own hardware on display.
Lenovo typically focuses on its laptop lineup and we expect that to continue this year. A recent listing from Lenovo for the Legion Y530 and Y7000P mention the NVIDIA GTX 1160, so it’s certainly possible these machines could make an appearance.
In addition to laptops, we could also see some VR or smart home related announcements — at least if previous Lenovo CES presentations are anything to go by. In fact, the Lenovo Smart Display made a big appearance at CES last year.
Asus typically uses CES as a showcase for its laptops and Chromebooks, and we have every indication that Asus is set for a major Chromebook push again this year. At least one Chromebook is expected to utilize Intel’s Gemini Lake series chips, and a rumor from Android Headlines suggests we might see a high-end Chrome OS tablet as well.
Other possibilities include routers, computer accessories, and smart home accessories. While it’s not completely impossible that we might see something on the Android phone or tablet front, we haven’t heard any substantial rumors on that end.
Unfortunately, we have word that HMD Global won’t make an official appearance at CES this year. Instead we expect big announcements from them closer to MWC 2019. The same story goes for Essential, who is having a bit of a hard time right now.
OnePlus never formally participates in CES and that’s not going to change this year either.
We’re a little less sure about Motorola. In the past, Motorola hasn’t done much at CES and we expect a similar situation at CES 2019 but we can’t say this with 100 percent certainty.
While every company will be trying to push its own product as being innovative and original, we can expect a few buzzwords to get repeated ad nauseam during CES 2019. Here’s our list of the words we’ll probably be sick of by the end of the event:
And that’s a wrap for now ladies and gents! We’ll be sure to add more announcements and reactions over the coming days!
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