CES 2019 Day 1 features Impossible Burger 2.0, smart toilet and smarter cars

By Dan Patterson, Thom Craver

/ CBS News

5G, smart tech, new TVs at CES 2019 Consumer Electronics Show

This year's Consumer Electronics Show — CES 2019 — kicked off Tuesday in Las Vegas. CES is an annual event where developers showcase their new technological and electronic innovations.

The event is so big, it will be spread out across three separate blocks and divided into Tech East, Tech West and Tech South. Tech East will be held in the Las Vegas Convention Center, Westgate Hotel, and Renaissance Hotel. Tech West will be encompassed within Sands Expo, as well as the Venetian, Palazzo, Wynn and Encore hotels. Finally, Tech South will go on within the Aria, Park MGM, and Vdara.

The 2019 Consumer Electronics Show officially started Tuesday, but it's already been a busy week loaded with innovative technologies, new gadgets, and major announcements from the world's largest hardware makers.

The Consumer Technology Association, CTA — the group that organizes CES — announced a $10 million commitment to women, diverse founders and diverse leadership teams. The money will help women, people of color and underrepresented startups and entrepreneurs gain equal access to venture funding.

"The U.S. needs to invest in a diverse talent pool to capture great ideas and innovation and help birth more 'unicorn' companies," said Tiffany Moore, senior vice president, political and industry affairs, CTA.

CES 2019 preview: Laundry-folding and companion robots

What to expect from CES 2019

Each year over 180,000 people attend the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas to experience the latest in cutting edge tech. The show covers over 2.9 million square feet with gadgets and technologies with the potential to change the lives of billions of people. Nearly 1,200 new startups debut products at the show, making CES the largest incubator in the world.

This year we'll hear a lot about evolutionary technologies like 5G, artificial intelligence and connected smart devices.

Big trends to watch

  • Smart homes and smart transportation hubs
  • Lots of new phones, watches and personal gadgets
  • Drones for consumers and business are flying high
  • 4K, 8K and Micro-LED televisions are everywhere
  • Health tech has a lot of potential
  • AI is everywhere
  • VR and AR might still have a massive impact in coming years
  • Kohler Smart

    Kohler announced a new smart toilet. The company's intelligent toilet is a part of the company's smart bathroom collection and will be a "fully immersive experience" with a heated seat, personalized cleansing, ambient lighting, voice control and Amazon Alexa support.

    Kohler says a cleansing feature utilizes warm water that alternates between soft and strong pressure is an alternative to toilet tissue. The toilet rinses itself before and after use.

    This is Kohler's second year at CES. The full smart bathroom collection includes bathroom fixtures with smart lights and new Verdera Voice Lighted Mirror powered by Google Assistant. Last year's model was powered by Amazon's Alexa.

    The Verdera Voice Lighted Mirror includes two integrated LEDs that are fully dimmable. You can dim or brighten the lights via voice command, touch or app control. Chris Monroe/CNET

    Ford cellular tech makes smart cars smarter

    Ford announced a cellular connected technology will allow smart cars to do more on the road. In a collaborative effort with Qualcomm, Ford used CES 2019 to demonstrate their cellular vehicle-to-everything technology — which they refer to as C-V2X.

    The automaker said their cellular technology can navigate roads, detect risks like pedestrians and share data with other cars to help ease traffic congestion. Ford plans to launch the new tech in cars starting in 2022. By then, the emergence of 5G will make the technology and connectivity even better.

    190108-ford-motor-company-smart-cars.jpg
    Ford Motor Company debuts its smart car technology in this image provided by the carmaker. Ford Motor Company

    Impossible Burger 2.0 unveiled today

    Impossible Foods unveiled the Impossible Burger 2.0, a meat-free "burger" that sizzles, pops and tastes just like real beef. Almost.

    Impossible Foods is known for its plant-based vegan burger that tastes a lot like real beef. Founded in 2011, the company was first to use an ingredient called heme, a blood-like compound found in all living things and that can replicate the taste, color and aroma of meat.

    CNET reporter Dara Kerr tried the burger at a test kitchen a couple of weeks ago. She described it as having "a juicy pink interior with a smoky charred crust" and describing the faux meat as "soft and savory."

    "I couldn't tell it wasn't the real thing," she wrote in her review.

    First published on January 8, 2019

    © 2019 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.

    Dan Patterson

    Dan Patterson is a senior producer for CNET and CBS News. He covers the tech trends that shape business, politics, and culture.

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