CES 2014: Odds and Ends (Emphasis on the Odd)

PHOTO: Visitors at the consumer electronics show CES 2014 in Las Vegas, Jan. 7, 2014.
Britta Pedersen/picture-alliance/AP Photo

Any publicity is good publicity, especially if you’re showing a product at the Consumer Electronics Show. Several of the gadgets at CES may make you scratch your head and think “Well, isn’t that something?”

But that’s all part of the fun and charm of CES: That Willy Wonka-like attitude to bring you gadgets you wouldn’t have imagined. Here are some of ABC News’ picks for the strangest things available on the CES show floor in Las Vegas.

The See-Through Speaker

PHOTO: Its not a touchscreen. Its a speaker.
Clearview Audio
ClearView Clio

It looks like it could be the next wave of touchable displays, but ClearView doesn’t want its customers to get their fingerprints all over Clio, the company’s wireless and transparent speaker. Rather than the traditional cone-in-a-box design that many speakers use today, it opts for a flat surface.

The Clio uses a piece of acrylic glass as the transducer in order to produce sound. Because of its flat surface, the speaker can propagate the sound in several directions at once. It’s expected to ship at the end of March this year and can be purchased for $349.

Follow the Bouncing Ball

PHOTO: Jocks and nerds can come together over the 94Fifty Basketball.
Infomotion Sports Technology
Infomotion 94Fifty Basketball

Jocks and nerds can come together over Infomotion’s 94Fifty Basketball. The smart basketball measures players’ skills, telling them the angle of their shots or the force of their dribble, among other stats. They can then compare themselves to professional basketball players and see what aspects of the game they need to work on.

The 94Fifty is currently an iOS-friendly product. It’s currently available both in the Apple Store and online for $295.

Toothbrush 2.0

PHOTO: The electric toothbrush joins the internet of things
Kolibree
Kolibree Smart Toothbrush

You’re supposed to brush your teeth for at least two minutes. Maybe your current electric toothbrush signals when it’s okay to spit, but the Kolibree takes it a step further. The new toothbrush keeps track of what parts of your mouth have been washed, and for how long.

The toothbrush also incorporates a points system, so that parents can turn it into a game with their kids. At the very least, the accompanying smartphone app will know whether the kids are lying when asked, “Did you brush your teeth?”

Dirty Phone? Clean It Up

PHOTO: Your phone is disgusting, so you might as well give it a nightly bath.
PhoneSoap
Phone Soap

It’s not too surprising that your smartphone is a paradise for bacteria. It’s constantly being touched and is often stored in dark and warm places, like your pocket or your purse. Phone Soap wants its customers to take phone cleanliness beyond a cloth rubdown.

Phone Soap isn’t an actual bar of soap, but more like a tiny tanning bed. The device envelops your phone in ultraviolet light, killing microbes lurking on the surface. Smartphones can also be plugged directly into the Phone Soap box so that they won’t run out of power if you leave it running overnight.

And You Should Call More Often

PHOTO: Mother knows exactly what youve been up to and wants to let you know.
Sen.se
Mother

Moms often work double-, triple-duty being chauffeurs, chefs and chaperones. The design firm Sen.se wanted to make a device that could also switch between jobs on the fly, resulting in Mother.

The device comes with a pear-shaped hub and four accessory motion tags that can be snapped onto almost anything. Depending on what the tags are attached to, they will tell Mother how you slept last night, how much coffee you’ve brewed, and how far you’ve walked during the day.

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