Mobile World Congress 2016 is in full swing in Barcelona and for the first full day of the show, we’re seeing products that might change how we live.
Yesterday was the big day for mobile phones, today is all about things you can wear and fill your home with to make life a little easier.
Let’s take a look at what mattered during Day 1 of the show, and check out our full coverage of MWC on CNET.
Smart glasses are back
Google Glass has come and gone, but smart glasses are getting a new shot with Epson Moverio Smart Glasses. These rather large glasses use OLED screens to create a more natural-looking, less distracting head-up display.
Yes, they look a bit dorky, but they have practical uses, like playing 2D or 3D videos, interacting with augmented reality and controlling drones. If you’re interested, Epson plans to sell them in late 2016 to average people. No word on pricing.
These shoes could make you a better weightlifter
Hone your CrossFit or golfing skills with the Iofit smart shoes. With built-in pressure sensors, they can tell you a lot about your stance when you swing a golf club or your weight distribution when you’re lifting weights.
The shoes hail from Samsung’s Creative Labs Iofit company and are built in partnership with Korean shoemaker TNS. The companies are launching a Kickstarter campaign starting February 22, where you’ll be able to preorder them for $199.
A phone that can see through walls
Rugged meets practical with the CAT S60, a new phone from Caterpillar (yes, the same company that makes construction equipment). The S60 has a built-in thermal camera from thermal camera maker Flir that can show heat and cold in your environment.
Even cooler, the back of the phone has a switch so you can toggle between the thermal camera and a regular, 13-megapixel camera. Because it’s built by Caterpillar, it has a rugged design that can handle drops, dirt and water.
Sony’s gadgets for the home
Sony’s been working on lots more than just phones. The company brought a few concept products to MWC. First is the Xperia Projector, which can show apps like a calendar, the weather, photo albums or your address book, on your table or countertop.
Finally, the Xperia Ear is a Bluetooth headset that also reads updates from your phone. It will dictate text messages, deliver weather reports and remind you of calendar appointments. This is the only product that Sony will actually sell from its lineup of accessories it debuted at the show.
The phones and tablets we saw
Taking a cue from Samsung, Sony’s built a curved-screen phone that looks like it has no bezel. The Xperia XA is lacking top-of-the-line specs, but it features a striking, edge-to-edge screen.
The XA’s big brother, the Xperia X has better internal guts and a simpler square design that’s become Sony’s hallmark. These phones won’t wow everyone, but they are a step down from Sony’s high-end Xperia Z line.
Compact and stylish, ZTE showed off the Blade V7 and V7 Lite in Barcelona. The two phones won’t hit the US, but you can buy them in Germany, Spain, South Africa, Ethiopia and Mexico in early spring.
Alcatel’s Idol 4S is the company’s new flagship phone with a super HD screen. It also features a button on the side that you can program to take photos or open a specific app.
The Idol 4 is a step down from the 4S and features a smaller screen.
ExtrasVodafone is helping refugees with a large portable charger with Wi-Fi, so they can connect and power their phones in refugee camps and other remote areas.Verizon is currently testing its faster 5G network. Expect to see faster data speeds in the next few years.AT&T and Intel are working together to give drones 4G LTE connectivity.Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg introduced a new project to give Internet access to people in developing countries.
Day one of Mobile World Congress is coming to a close, but there is still plenty of news ahead. Check back tomorrow for more highlights from the show and get the full scoop on MWC on CNET.