CES 2018 is just around the corner. The largest consumer electronic event in the world will be underway at Las Vegas from January 9 to January 12. This is the time when companies start teasing the products they plan to showcase at the mammoth tech show and we have some news from the Samsung stable.
Samsung C-Lab, an in-house incubation programme at the company, will be showcasing three new and interesting devices at CES 2018. One is a set of portable directional speakers called S Ray, the other is a lung recovery and breathing solution called GoBreath, while the third one is a headset to help people with visual impairments see better.
All three devices have been developed in-house by Samsung employees under its C-Lab initiative. Through the C-Lab initiative, Samsung helps cultivate and support innovative ideas from its employees and lets them branch out as individual startups with funding aid. The three devices will also be accompanied by products from seven other startups that spun off from C-Lab.
So let’s take a look at what Samsung C-Lab has in store for us on the CES 2018 showfloor.
Sound-Ray (S-Ray) Directional Speakers
S-Ray or Sound-Ray speakers bring the concept of headphones and implement it in three different types of portable speakers. S-Ray speakers project sound in one direction so that only the user can hear it and those around the listener don’t get disturbed. Three variants of the S-Ray directional speakers will be displayed at CES 2018. These include - S-Ray Mini, S-Ray Handy, and S-Ray Neck Band.
“S-Ray is a directional speaker that is made much smaller, lighter and portable with its unique system module while maintaining the advantages of conventional directional speakers and/or earphones. S-Ray helps people avoid having to put on earphones for a long time which can cause ear pain, and avoids the distractions to others Bluetooth speakers can cause,” Samsung wrote in a media release.
The S-Ray Mini is a speaker in the form of a smartphone cover, while the S-Ray Handy is a bigger portable speaker that can be carried in-hand. The S-Ray Neck Band is essentially a necklace shaped device which users can wear around their necks. Not much else is known about the speakers, except for a video in which Samsung highlights the multiple use cases of the directional speakers. The images of the three S-Ray speakers appears right at the end of the video.
GoBreath is a recovery solution for people with damaged lungs. The solution consists of a portable device and an accompanying app which will help users breathe better and restore their lung capacity. The GoBreath solution has been conceptualised by a doctor at Samsung Medical Center, and the product was developed for lung damage/lung surgery patients with a diminished capacity to breathe. The video released by Samsung doesn't really show the device, but visually describes better breathing techniques, which would eventually be served up to users as guides in the GoBreath app.
According to Samsung’s description, GoBreath can “teach patients basic techniques such as inspiration, coughing or deep breathing. Patients can refer to exercise guidelines and check how well their lungs have recovered through the app”
The GoBreath solution will even offer web and cloud based services to help doctors monitor the progress made by their patients and provide regular reminders to practice better breathing.
Relumino is a pair of eyeglasses that use a smartphone’s processor and battery to help visually impaired people see clearer. “The smartphone processes images from videos projected through the camera of the glasses, and the processed images are floated into the display of the Relúmĭno glasses to help the wearer see things better,” writes Samsung.
Although the final product is intended to be visual aid eyeglasses, the video accompanying the description shows what looks like a VR headset with a phone housed within it. That’s because the developers of Relumino are currently using a solution that requires a Gear VR headset with a Samsung phone functioning as a display. The final product will be drastically different and will come with four modes.
One mode will make images clearer by making outlines more visually prominent to help the visually impaired distinguish between objects while seeing them. The Colour Invert Mode will aid in reading from a normal distance by displaying text in high contrast to make reading better. Another mode will help those with central and peripheral vision loss by using image remapping to move the missing image from the blind spot to a nearby visible area. The fourth mode works like sunglasses to reduces glare caused by certain colours.
Further, the Relumino glasses will be omnifocul to help users switch between the four different modes automatically.
Along with S-Ray directional speakers, GoBreath, and Relumino, Samsung will be showcasing products from seven startups that originated at C-Lab. These startups will showcase products like a wearable 360 camera, an ultrasound toothbrush, an artificial intelligence (AI) skincare assistant, a kid’s watch, smart sticky notes printer, an innovative watch strap, and a smart communication device for helmet users.