Tim Baxter, President and COO of Samsung Electronics America, speaks during the Samsung press conference ahead of the 2017 International CES, a trade show of consumer electronics, in Las Vegas, Nevada, January 4, 2017. Photo by Molly Riley/UPI | License Photo
LAS VEGAS, Jan. 4 (UPI) -- The much-heralded annual Consumer Electronics Show is set to open Thursday in Las Vegas, and many of the biggest exhibitors held press conferences Wednesday to tease some of the products they'll be unveiling at this weekend's show.
Samsung, LG, Sony and several others teased products that will be rolled out to consumers as CES 2017 starts, which cover the obvious -- laptops, cell phones and televisions -- but include new robotic assistants, improvements to the smart home and newly-"smart" devices such as mirrors and brushes.
This year's CES, the 50th time it has been held, includes more than 2.6 million square feet of displays in 24 product categories.
While much attention has already been put on virtual reality, adding artificial intelligence to everything possible and self-driving cars, much of the focus Wednesday for companies was showing off the next step for many of the most commonly used devices.
In its press conference, Samsung unveiled several new items, including new televisions using QLED televisions that offer brighter, more colorful displays. The remote that comes with the television is meant to control more devices than ever, and voice features for TV operation, as well as added functionality to the SmartHub app on both Android and iOS.
Looking to improve laundry, Samsung introduced the FlexWash and FlexDry systems, both of which are dual-load machines, allowing large and small loads to run either separately or at the same time, with different settings assigned to each.
Samsung also introduced three laptops on Wednesday: The Chromebook Plus and Chromebook Pro, each of which are designed to run apps from the Google Play Store, the 15-inch Notebook 9 designed for Windows 10, and a gaming laptop called the Notebook Odyssey with mindbending specifications meant for gaming and supercharge option to milk even more power out of the laptop when needed.
LG introduced another round of televisions using OLED panels, including a 65-inch LG Signature W7 TV measuring 2.57 millimeters thick. LG also introduced the updated model of its super-light Gram 14 laptop and five smartphones, four which are part of the K series of phones and the newest LG Stylo 3.
The company is also applying monitors to anything with a surface, including a refrigerator with a 29-inch display that allows owners to look inside the fridge without opening it and links to Amazon's Alexa, adding an artificial intelligence assistant to the futuristic icebox.
LG plans to release a the Hub Robot, which uses Amazon's Alexa for voice recognition, has an interactive display and spins to face the direction from which it is being spoken to.
Sony debuted the 4K Bravia OLED television series, which uses the company's Acoustic Surface technology to vibrate the display and allow sound to emanate from the screen -- offering a speakerless and standless television -- which the company says enhances the visuals of the set.
A new version of the flagship HT-ST5000 sound bar using Dolby Atmos 3D surround sound, among other technologies, to offer improved "room-filling audio."
A variety of new headphones were also debuted by Sony, many of which allow for wireless and noise-cancelling options, and showed off the pairing of audio and television components which work with Google Home to allow for voice commands on many of the company's latest products.