A Look Beyond the Bling at LA's Luxury Tech Show

At the Petersen Museum in Los Angeles, the west coast edition of the Luxury Tech Show was filled with gold phones, automated homes, and personal drones. Here’s a roundup of some of the more unusual offerings on display.

Rocket Skates by Acton

Why walk when you can glide along at 12 miles per hour on motorized electric skates? The makers of Rocket Skates claim these little babies will scoot you 6-10 miles on a full charge. They also are designed so that it’s possible to walk up stairs while wearing them, so you can zip to the office, trot up the stairs, and beat everyone to the elevator. Ranging from $419-$700, these little robo shoes are available for pre-order now with a ship date of November/December of this year. Due to legal restrictions of the venue, I wasn’t allowed to take them for a test ride at the show, but you can schedule one for yourself through the Acton website.

BioSensor Penguin

Want to know if there are antibiotics in your milk and meat? Squeeze a drop of meat juice onto the Penguin’s cartridge and the little screen will tell you if your grass-fed free-range dinner really was antibiotic free. Be your own consumer watchdog! The folks I met said they are working on a pesticide test for produce as well, but haven’t perfected it as yet. For now, you can get more info on the Biosensor website.

Cube Home 3D Printer

You too can scan and make your own 3D printed shoe, phone case, and… what are those, antlers? For under $1000, the Cube can print two color items in your home for $50 a cartridge. According to the folks at Cube, one set of cartridges will make 6 shoes like the ones you see there. So if you want custom designed phone covers, small art pieces, or shoes literally made for your feet Cinderella style, add the Cube to your holiday gift list.

Or if stress reduction is your aim, the Muse headband might be more your speed.

Using biofeedback attached to an app, the Muse directs your mind to relax using audio and visual cues. Becoming more relaxed? You’ll hear waterfalls and the picture on the app will have a blue sky. Starting to get back to stressful thoughts? Clouds form and you’ll hear wind. The idea of this intrigues me greatly, although it was difficult to really test at a convention-style setting. So, I have one of these headbands on the way to try out a home, and I’ll be sure to give you a full report in an upcoming Tech ^ 2.

What was interesting to me was that most of the luxury show wasn’t new or different, just “higher end” of the same things we already have. Have an iPhone? How about a gold-plated one? Have a pedometer/heart rate monitor? How about one in your sapphire-screened watch? Have a standing desk? How about one that’s motorized? Maybe I’m jaded, but if I were a billionaire mogul, I’d want a jetpack or JARVIS, not commonplace tech that’s dripping jewels. But that seemed the focus of many of the business showcasing. Maybe it’s because the show was in Los Angeles, or maybe some companies were holding off on revealing new products until CES. Whatever the reason, here’s hoping that our future is more Elon Musk and less Kim Kardashian.