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Steam Boxes, 8K resolutions, gaming tablets and wall projections - the bold and bizarre exhibits of CES 2013

CVG rounds up this week's best tech reveals

The 2013 Consumer Electronics Show is coming to a close, and some interesting new gadgets and gizmos have been revealed this year.

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For those not in the loop, CES is the consumer electronics industry's equivalent to E3, so it's where you can expect to see the tech of the future for the first time. Here's a look at some of the most interesting announcements so far.


The Steam Box

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Image: Polygon

It's been rumoured, it's been teased, it's been denied then it's been rumoured a little bit more, but the Steam Box is finally a reality. Valve has invested in computer manufacture Xi3 who will be developing a special customised PC designed to bring Steam to the living room.

The box, codenamed Piston, will offer up to 1TB of internal storage and the ability to upgrade components like the RAM and CPU in the future, a spokesperson told Polygon.

Valve will also be making its own Steam Box in-house, and they'll be a few more from other PC manufacturers too.

The real test will be the price. If this Steam Box (or whatever it ends up being called) is as powerful as it's being rumoured (4-8 GB of DDR3 RAM and a quad-core 64-bit, x86-based 32nm processor running at up to 3.2GHz with 4MB of Level2 Cache) then it could potentially be too pricey to both attract console gamers and convince PC gamers that it's worth making the switch. Make us believers, Gabe.


Samsung's bendy television

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Samsung showed off what it claims is the world's first ever curved OLED TV, which bends slightly inwards to create a more panoramic feel.

Samsung reckons the screen is "a comfortable experience for the human eye", and claims the curved screen means the viewing angle feels equal wherever you sit (though we're going to have to believe that when we see it).

One thing's for sure - considering how pricey a 55-inch OLED TV would be on its own, we can only imagine how much one with a curved screen will cost. Still, it's sure to be the perfect entertainment solution for all those tech-loving lighthouse owners out there.


The Asus Transformer AiO

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This past year has seen plenty of laptops that transform into tablets (Microsoft's Surface being the first that springs to mind) but the Asus Transformer AiO takes that concept a little further.

When on the move, it's a standard tablet running Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean) from an Nvidia Tegra 3 processor. Take it home and whack it on its stand however and it becomes a desktop PC running Windows 8 running on a Core i3 processor and Nvidia GT 730M GPU.

The trick's the stand, which has its own array of USB ports and a built-in 1TB hard disk (the tablet itself has 16GB flash memory). While it seems like a clever combination of Windows at home and Android on the move, it remains to be seen whether that actually works out in practice, especially with a $1500 price point.


Xbox IllumiRoom

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Here's an odd little idea from Microsoft but one that, if executed properly, could improve the level of gamer immersion massively. IllumiRoom combines Kinect and a special projector to add visuals to the area around the TV, making it seem as if your entire room is part of the action.

The examples given in Microsoft's video include snow falling in winter scenes, FPS viewpoints extending well beyond the boundaries of the TV and the ability to see items around you that may not necessarily be framed on the screen.

The best way to explain it is by showing you Microsoft's concept video, so slap your sightballs round the video below. According to Microsoft, all the effects in the vid are completely real and nothing has been added in post-processing.

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