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CES 2016: news and highlights

Update: Lenovo announces Project Tango smartphone

What better place than Las Vegas to showcase the sexiest and shiniest new gadgets? That's exactly where we are right now, for CES 2016, the first major trade show of the year. Here are the latest announcements – including a Lenovo Project Tango smartphone, the world's first Snapdragon 820 smartphone, and a new MediaTek processor – and what else you can expect.

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When and what is CES 2016?

CES stands for Consumer Electronics Show, and it takes place from Wednesday, January 6 to Saturday, January 9, 2016, with press preview days on the Monday and Tuesday.

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CES is the first of the mobile tech trade shows of the year. / © ANDROIDPIT

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Smartphones, tablets and smartwatches

Lenovo and Project Tango

Project Tango is a Google effort aimed at bringing a spatially aware tablet to fruition through motion-tracking, depth-perception, and area-learning technologies. 

AndroidPIT received an invitation  to a Project Tango event being held in Las Vegas, which turned out to be the announcement of a Project Tango smartphone for the consumer market. Although the device is still in the prototype phase, we were provided with renders of what it might look like, which you can see below.

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Renders of the forthcoming Lenovo Project Tango smartphone. / © Google

Google is also marking the occasion by offering developers the chance to submit ideas for how the tech might be used in games and apps. Google will select its favorite ideas and provide funding and engineering support to the developers to make the ideas a reality on the cutting-edge platform.

The submission deadline is February 15. For full details on how to take part in the contest, visit the Android Developers Blog.


FitBit provided at look at its new entry into the smartwatch market, although in reality the Fitbit Blaze sits somewhere between a smartwatch and fitness tracker. While it functions as a notification center, it lacks support for third-party apps. Battery life benefits because of this, reportedly lasting up to five days, but the Fitbit Blaze also relies on a Bluetooth connection to your phone to use GPS. 

The Fitbit Blaze starts at around US$200, with additional costs for different-colored bands and frames.


Letv got the jump on the Snapdragon 820 at CES. Its newly-announced Le Max Pro smartphone will be the first device in the world to sport the next-generation processor, although there is no word on when it will be released.

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The Letv Le Max Pro on display at CES. / © ANDROIDPIT

Qualcomm's Sense ID ultrasonic fingerprint tech will also appear on the Letv Le Max Pro before any other device.

The technology, which is expected to find its way onto a range of devices this year, is essentially a far more accurate fingerprint recognition tool. It uses a sensor capable of operating through metal and glass, so there's no need for a surface-level sensor; instead, it can be embedded in the screen or the phone's back. On the Le Max Pro, the sensor is placed below 400 micrometers of metal on the phone's rear panel.


Honor 5X

Huawei's mid-range subsidiary, Honor, made a big announcement at CES on January 5. It unveiled the Honor 5X, a no-nonsense, all-metal budget smartphone that offers a 5.5-inch screen, 64-bit octa-core Snapdragon 615 processor, 13 MP rear camera and 3,000 mAh battery.

Coming in at only US$199, it is an affordable and powerful package intended to lead Honor's march into the US market. Find out more about the Honor 5X at the link.

Huawei MediaPad M2 10.0

Huawei unveiled the MediaPad M2 10.0, which is essentially an enlarged version of the M2 8.0, with its 10.1-inch screen sitting an uncomfortable 0.1 inches from its name. The key selling point here seems to be the speaker setup, which places four speakers about the tablet for "premium sound quality".


LG K10 and K7 revealed

On the first day of CES 2016, LG unveiled a pair of new K-line devices, the LG K10 and K7. Intended to provide a premium look and feel at an affordable budget, the new devices have 5.3- and 5-inch screens, respectively.

Their specs do little to compare to their luxurious appearance, however, offering unremarkable 1.1-1.3 GHz quadcore processors, depending on the model. Find out more about the LG K10 and K7 at the link.

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The LG K10 impressed visually, with its curved edges, but the specs leave something to be desired. / © ANDROIDPIT

Unfortunately, we couldn't get any word from LG employee Raul Lopez on the anticipated prices and release dates for the new devices. 



MediaTek's smartwatch-specific MT2523 processor was touted, prior to CES, as a potential game changer, said to consume so little power that a smartwatch could last more than a week off a single charge. This has turned out to be a little hyperbolic.

We spoke to MediaTek Department Chief for New Business Development Cliff Lin, who told us that the chip offers only very limited connectivity options – Bluetooth, GPS and 2G – and that even the Bluetooth implementation is limited to such an extent that Bluetooth headsets are not supported.

Ultimately, it is not enough to power what would be considered a conventional smartwatch, so the great battery salvation has been postponed.

Still to come

LG at CES 2016

LG G Flex 3 and more TVs

We're expecting TVs to be a big part of LG's announcements at CES 2016 too, especially things relating to its WebOS platform and the holy grail 8K standard. But it's the LG G Flex 3 that we're really looking forward to seeing (despite some claiming there won't be another G Flex).

Without the problems of the Snapdragon 810, the next version of LG's flexible smartphone, if it does come to be, could be a real contender in 2016. We might even see a fully flexible or 2K display.

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The LG G Flex 3 might deliver the first flexible QHD display. / © ANDROIDPIT

Samsung at CES 2016

Samsung Galaxy S7 preview

You may recall that we found out that Samsung was secretly showing the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge to select industry partners at CES 2015. Not surprisingly it wasn't letting the tech press anywhere near the new phones, but based on this, we're certain that there will be a briefcase with the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge in it somewhere in the back rooms of the Las Vegas Convention Center...

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We're sure the Galaxy S7 will be in attendance somewhere. / © ANDROIDPIT

Mid-range phones, Tizen and BRITECELL camera tech

Samsung is also likely to show off some new mid-range phones and some new tablets. We're thinking the Galaxy A4 and Galaxy A6 and perhaps new Galaxy Tab Pro and Galaxy Note Pro tablets. We're also expecting a lot of new TVs – of the Android and standard variety as well as 4K and 8K – and we wouldn't be surprised if some major updates to the Tizen platform were announced.

BRITECELL – Samsung's new camera tech expected to arrive in the Galaxy S7 –  will also be demoed at CES. The technology was announced at an investor's conference recently, but no confirmation was made about including it in the next Galaxy. With Samsung losing its title as the best Android smartphone camera we're sure the company will be bringing its A-game in 2016.

Samsung has presented details of its 20 MP BRITECELL sensor technology. / © Samsung

Huawei at CES 2016

Huawei Mate 8

Huawei is promising something for CES, with its new portfolio of devices. It's too early for a new Huawei Watch 2, unless it's a really early prototype that won't be out until the end of 2016, but the Huawei Mate 8 is sure to get its US unveiling.

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The Huawei Mate 8 is out in China already and it's pretty fantastic. / © Huawei

Asus at CES 2016

Super-affordable Asus ZenFone 3

You have to love Asus Chairman Jonney Shih's enthusiastic presentations at CES. The guy just makes you feel all warm and fuzzy when he takes the stage.

The new ZenFone 3 is likely to make us feel that way too, with its awesome blend of power and low price. We'll probably see a new ZenFone Zoom as well, and another Transformer Book on the tablet-cum-laptop front.

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The ZenFone 2 was one of the surprise bargains of 2015. What will the ZenFone 3 offer? / © ANDROIDPIT

ZTE at CES 2016

ZTE Nubia Z11

ZTE is another Chinese manufacturer doing really interesting things right now, including the bezel-less display on the Nubia Z11. The rumor mill is also indicating it might be the first smartphone to hit the market featuring Qualcomm's new Snapdragon 820 chipset, but that title might also go to the G Flex 3. It'll just depend on who gets to market first. ZTE will be previewing its 2016 products at CES.

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Will the ZTE Nubia Z11 be the first phone to market with the Snapdragon 820? / © mydrivers,cnbeta

HTC at CES 2016

HTC will likely reserve its HTC One M10 for an unveiling at MWC 2016 rather than CES, but we should see the secret partnership the company teased earlier this year with Under Armor.

We're not entirely sure what this will be – smart clothing perhaps, or a different kind of fitness wearable – but there's a Bluetooth SIG listing for a smart scale. Not exactly sexy, but certainly functional.

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How different will HTC try to make the HTC One M10? We probably won't find out at CES. / © ANDROIDPIT

Smartwatches at CES 2016

Smartwatches really came into their own in 2015, with the second generation models finally getting the mix right. There's still a long way to go, not least with Android Wear, but the hardware is getting better with each passing month. Expect to see even more companies entering the fray in 2016 in a dedicated wearable wing in Vegas.

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TAG Heuer isn't likely to be the only large watchmaker entering the smartwatch fray in 2016. / © Tag Heuer

Processors at CES 2016

Qualcomm, NVIDIA and Intel

Processors may not seem sexy, but when you think about how integral to your smartphone they are, you should really give them a little more love. CES 2015 debuted both the NVIDIA Tegra X1 and the Qualcomm Snapdragon 810. CES 2016 promises to show us what comes after these two class-leading mobile processors.

We expect to see the first devices running the new Snapdragon 820 and possibly the next mobile devices to run the Tegra X1 following the Pixel C transformer tablet/laptop, which was announced alongside Android 6.0 Marshmallow. If we're lucky, NVIDIA will also preview whatever comes after the X1 and Intel will have some new Atom processors.

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Qualcomm, NVIDIA and Intel will have some powerful new chips to show at CES 2016. / © ANDROIDPIT

VR at CES 2016

Yes, we know we discussed Oculus year after year, but the company is finally scheduled to officially launch the consumer version of the Oculus Rift in Q1 of 2016, meaning a final version will definitely be at CES 2016. Sony's Project Morpheus, now known officially as Playstation VR, will also be at the event.

The consumer version of HTC's Vive VR headset has been delayed until April 2016 but the company will also launch a developer edition of the Vive at CES 2016. Samsung might also have an updated Gear VR 2 up its sleeve. All told, there are more than 40 companies presenting VR gear at CES, so get ready.

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Virtual Reality will be a hot topic for 2016. / © ANDROIDPIT

Smart cars at CES 2016

Smart cars, self-driving vehicles and electric concept prototypes will be all over the place at CES, with tons of manufacturers keynoting, presenting and demoing vehicles of every size, description and price point.

Android Auto and Apple's equivalent will also be center-stage, with plenty of head units for both platforms being flogged day and night. With 25 percent more floor space dedicated to cars at CES 2016, you can bet smart cars in 2016 are going to be what smartwatches were in 2015.

What are you most looking forward to at CES 2016? What do you think will steal the show? Tell us in the comments below.


Write new comment:
  • They have already announced the price point and release date for the Oculus Rift.

  • Abhyuday 9 months ago Link to comment


  • Hmm. Galaxy S7 edge or the LG G Flex 3? Damn. I have the Galaxy S6 edge now, and planned on the S7 variant, but I'm leaning towards the new G Flex! I'm sure it's gonna be a great device.

  • Amazing gadgets has been displayed to CES 2016. Wishing that all this new generations are as good and improved as the old ones.

  • I am looking forward to Asus Zenfone 3, Snapdragon 820 running on a device, and Samsung's BRITECELL technology.

  • Gary 9 months ago Link to comment

    Cool Things will show on CES 2016!! Hopefully the Zenfone 3 will make a bargain like Zenfone 2, and hopefully Nvidia Tegra X1 "son" will make amazing performance also intel and qualcomm will be powerful too but i really can't wait for the VR and Zenfone 3 !! Thanks for the news and Sorry if bad grammar

  • 明达 胡 10 months ago Link to comment

    Tegra X1 still has very good graphic performance today. The successor of Tegra X1 must be a monster!!!

  • and what about project Ara ?

  • Dylan S. Oct 17, 2015 Link to comment

    Wow first comment. Well what I'm looking forward to is a whole ton of new flagships this year with the new Snapdragon 820 that hopefully doesn't overheat(or have any other serious problems)!

    • Gary 9 months ago Link to comment

      Yeah Snapdragon are mostly related to heat problem and not to forget intel is sometimes create heat problems like in my Zenfone 5 and hopefully they won't overheat or cause some drawback in it's performance

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