Around the house wirelessly

Household electronics

By Philippa Martin-King

From fingernail-painting printers to rechargeable electric vehicles with integrated smartphones that can search for cheap off-peak electricity rates or charging stations, CES, the Las Vegas Consumer Electronics Show, had it all. There were new smarter smartphones equipped with voice recognition to take dictation; tablets galore – some with an additional Bluetooth keyboard; and Internet radios with wireless network security keys, rechargeable batteries and automated access to social media website pages such as Facebook and Flickr.

nail printer Fingernail printer

Wireless transmission is now firmly part of the everyday household. It’s one of the major developing areas for consumer electronics in 2011 and includes not only traditional networked systems to transmit and receive information over Wi-Fi, but also new charging devices that use inductive pads with an approach rather like that of the stove tops that heat saucepans without generating finger-burning surfaces.

Increasingly, TVs connect to the Internet and are reliant on wirelessly transmitted digital signals for their content as opposed to the former cable connection, satellite or land-transmitted means. Getting the Internet and traditional TV services to converge involves tremendous standardization efforts to ensure that all parties can interconnect and maintain compatibility between software, hardware and the necessary intermediary controlling devices.

New developments in the computer-like TV market are also resulting in a transformation from the traditional handheld pointing device to a more tabletlike approach, similar to that of smartphones with additional graphics and menus to control the various functions.

This month e-tech concentrates on household equipment and some of the aspects of IEC work seen in the many CES exhibits, including information technology and home electronics, energy efficiency and consumption controls.

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nail printer Fingernail printer
3/3 Philippa Martin-King, Managing Editor e-tech. Philippa Martin-King, Managing Editor e-tech