CES 2013 is still more than five months away, and naturally, gadget vendors aren't about to wait until then to either show off or ship new products. At the Consumer Electronics Association's (CEA) Line Show press event in New York City, companies are now giving sneak peeks at upcoming wares that include the industry's first touchscreen Wi-Fi router, a nifty folding easel-style stand for digital cameras (adapted from a similar one for tablets), a new pocket-sized media hub from Spyder, and more.
"Configuring a router isn't that easy to do," said Rammohan Malasani, CEO, in a meeting with NotebookReview at the Securefi booth. That's why Securefi's forthcoming Almond router, set for availability in mid-July, will include a 2.8-inch, 320-by-240 color touchscreen.
The Almond is compatible with both Microsoft Windows PCs and Apple Macs. Playing around with the touchscreen, I drilled down into settings for configuring Internet access (with selections for cable, DSL or fiber modem), and security (WEP, WPA, and WPA2), for example, along with help sections for both Windows and Macs.
Although not that large, the screen responded well and was easy enough to read.
Operating at a speed of 300 Mbps over a 100-meter range, the Almond is outfitted with 1 WAN and 2 LAN ports. MSRP will be $79.00.
Securefi also showed a prototype of a different model, called the Almond DSL, which might or might not become an actual product. There are two main differences between the two models. The Almond DSL includes a built-in ADSL2+ model. Also, in place of a WAN port, it offers an RJ11 jack.
JetStream Mobile Media Hub Is Due Out Any Day
Spyder's new JetStream Mobile Media Hub, on the other hand, is due to ship any day now, said Michael Nitti, company president. First known as a provider of desktop cloud NAS devices, Spyder also sells a product billed as the only iPhone battery case that comes with a dock.
The new Wi-Fi-enabled, pocket-sized hub will offer storage and media streaming for up to six devices. You can stream different content to multiple devices simultaneously, or stream the same content to multiple devices.
However, just about any file can be streamed, including PowerPoint presentations and Word docs, Nitti told me.
Other features include two-way file transfer and built-in software for organizing files in a library.
The JetStream includes an SD card slot, along with a USB port for use with either a USB stick or a USB external storage drive. MSRP is $149.
Photo-eAzl Camera Stand Set for August
Elsewhere at the show, eAzl is previewing Photo-eAzl, essentially a larger version of Pocket-eAzl, a sturdy-looking but highly flexible portable tablet stand, released a few months ago, which folds up sort of like a jackknife. Pocket-eAzl is priced at $39.00.
The company doesn't yet have pricing for Photo-eAzl, but it will ship in August, said an eAzl rep. Photo-eAzl will be unique in the camera stand market, the rep contended, due to its adjustability, weight, and "rubber touch points at all contact points."
The weight of a stand is important to its ability to bear up against the weight of a camera, she explained.
When I held the folded-up eAzl in my hand, it seemed substantial, but certainly light enough to be carried around easily in a camera bag.
Other vendors, on the other hand, have chosen the CEA Line Show as a launchpad for upgrades or enhancements to existing products. Doxie is one example.
Doxie Go Scanner Gets a Big Upgrade
Doxie's diminuitive Doxie Go differs from other portable scanners, said Amanda Rhode, a PR rep in Doxie's booth. It's much easier to use when you're away from your home or office because you don't need to connect it in some way to a laptop or desktop PC in order to scan documents.
Doxie Go is able to scan everything from business cards to business letters, as I witnessed in a series of demos.
The upgraded edition, which started shipping on Tuesday, is able to scan longer, legal-sized docs (measuring 8.5 by 14 inches).
Also, through a "HelloFax" capability now integrated into its built-in software, you can now fax signed contracts and other docs directly from the portable scanner.
Other new capabilities include Dropbox integration, for doc sharing online, and Wi-Fi synchornization with PCs, Evernote, and iOS and Android OS mobile devices.
The latest Doxie Go scanner is priced at $199, but the wireless sync feature will cost you an extra $30.