The Best Of CES 2023: The Stand-Out Cars And Tech Of This Year's Show

Setting the stage for a bright and bold year of technology, CES 2023 delivered something for everyone. After more than five decades of the Consumer Electronics Show, you'd think we'd be used to the mix of future-previewing concepts and open-your-wallet-now products headed straight to shelves, but regular reinvention has kept things fresh each year. Now as much a car event as a technology showcase, it's a reminder that whether it's a product in your pocket or parked up in your garage, the electronics industry is omnipresent.

That means there's a whole lot spread out across Las Vegas, Nevada, to take in. Happily, the SlashGear team has been curating the very best of CES 2023 for our annual awards, and regardless of whether you're a gamer, a car enthusiast, or just looking to replace the TV in your living room, we've got all the angles covered.

Best Laptop of CES 2023 - Lenovo Yoga Book 9i

You'd be forgiven for thinking that there was little new space to explore in the laptop world, with new models simply going smaller, lighter, and longer lasting. Clearly, nobody told Lenovo that, however, else we may not have got the Yoga Book 9i. It seems to start with the premise that, if one screen is good, then two surely has to be better.

The latest addition to the Yoga series is a clamshell of two touchscreens, which can be opened like a book or even stood up on top of each other. An on-screen keyboard keeps things highly portable, or there's a magnetically-attached Bluetooth keyboard for a little more key feel. More impressive still, this is no mere concept, and Lenovo plans to ship the Yoga Book 9i later in 2023. We'll only have to wait until April for the newest addition to the Yoga line to arrive on shelves.

Best Gaming of CES 2023 - Sony Project Leonardo

Accessibility shouldn't be an afterthought, and that includes gaming. While Sony's PlayStation 5 may be a living room mainstay at this point, the company's newest controller is something very new, and very welcome. Project Leonardo may look nothing like the DualShock controllers you're familiar with, but that's entirely by design.

It's intended to be highly customizable, with oversized buttons spread out in a ring configuration. Gone are the tiny buttons from the middle section of the DualShock, replaced by much larger and easy-to-press versions. The joysticks are separate components too, repositionable like the buttons, and they can be replaced with a knob design instead. It's all in the spirit of giving every gamer the layout that will work best with their own body, and we're huge fans of anything that encourages more people to take part in the hobbies they're most enthusiastic about.

Best Wearable of CES 2023 - Lumus Z-Lens

Is 2023 the year of Augmented Reality in the mainstream? The experts may still be arguing about that, but we're a step closer not only to practical AR but headsets and smart glasses that you wouldn't be embarrassed to wear in public. That means integrating high-resolution transparent displays into stylish eyewear, and it's where Lumus Z-Lens comes in.

At first glance, you'd be forgiven for missing that the company's prototype glasses are, in fact, an AR wearable. That's because the lenses look much like regular corrective glass, only here they integrate a full-color display. The key part is the so-called projection engine, now 50% smaller than the previous generation waveguide display, making it far easier to integrate into the temple cavity of a set of frames. Lumus won't be making smart glasses itself, but its display tech might be just what companies wading into the consumer augmented reality market are looking for.

Best Smart Home of CES 2023 - Samsung SmartThings Station

There's no denying that a smart home can be a useful home, with practical automation and the convenience of controlling devices remotely from your smartphone, tablet, or via voice. All the same, piecing together the patchwork of connectivity and hardware standards can make it a nightmare to set up and keep configured. Samsung SmartThings has long offered a way to corral different devices, but with the arrival of the SmartThings Station that gets a practicality and tech upgrade.

For a start, it now includes Matter support, the interconnectivity standard which we're counting on to dramatically improve the ease of use in a multi-product home. The fact that Samsung then has its smart home hub double as a wireless charger only makes it more likely that you'll want to leave it out on show, too. If the smart home's complexities have left you cautious, 2023 could be the year that all changes.

Best Automotive of CES 2023 - Mercedes-Benz PILOT ASSIST

Autonomous driving has been a mainstay of CES for years, now, but always as a nebulous concept rather than a road-ready product. Mercedes-Benz is ready to change all that, at least for some road conditions, with the arrival of PILOT ASSIST in the U.S. this year. Launched in Germany in mid-2022, it's set to be the first Level 3 autonomous system available to mainstream drivers in America.

While we're still years from a car that can take you door to door with no human supervision, PILOT ASSIST promises to free you from traffic jam boredom on the highway. The Mercedes takes responsibility for navigating through congestion, leaving the driver to check their email or even watch a movie. It'll launch in Nevada first, on select Mercedes models like the latest S-Class and EQS sedans, with support in California expected to follow shortly after.

Best Design of CES 2023 - Peugeot Inception Concept

Peugeot is a stranger to U.S. shores these days, and given how striking the Inception Concept is, that seems like a shame. Intended to preview not only the automaker's upcoming design direction as it expands its electric vehicle footprint, but also tease a self-driving future, there's a lot to be said for what was clearly the most alluring concept car of CES 2023.

On the outside, it's a sharp silhouette fit for a sci-fi movie, with a broad glass canopy, crisply angled front fascia, and rear lamps somehow both new and feeling pleasingly reminiscent of the 80s, too. Peugeot envisages a 680-horsepower electric drivetrain and almost 500 miles of range on a charge, controlled by a weird "Hypersquare" yoke steering wheel with embedded control wheels. It's the cabin, with its minimalist-meets-mid-century-modern aesthetic that's most beguiling, however: if this is the future of transportation, count us in.

Best TV of CES 2023 - LG Signature OLED M3

Huge TVs and the Consumer Electronics Show go together like little else, and each year it's an opportunity for set-makers to show off the latest in their ever-enlarging range. We're used to seeing LG and Samsung spar for attention, there, though Sony, HiSense, and TCL typically have something eye-catching on hand as well. For 2023, though, it's the LG Signature OLED M3 — a 97-inch behemoth that pairs cutting-edge display technology with a big wireless advantage — that takes the pole position in our home entertainment rankings. 

As we've seen before, LG splits the screen from the processing box with all its inputs. Where the Signature OLED M3 improves on that, however, is by making the link between the two parts wireless, adding greater flexibility for positioning. Throw in 4K resolution and a silky 120Hz refresh rate and you have a TV worth noticing.

Best Accessory of CES 2023 - Wireless Power Consortium Qi2

Cutting the power cord is commonplace for smartphones and other accessories these days, but the Wireless Power Consortium's new Qi2 standard promises to improve speed and convenience. As before, it'll mean no plugging in a cable to top-up your device, simply putting it on a wireless charging pad will be enough. However, much as we've seen with Apple's MagSafe, that positioning process will be made easier too.

Qi2 factors magnets into the standard, helping ensure the coils on both sides — the device and the charger it's sitting on — are in the best possible location for maximum charging speed. Meanwhile, there's also the potential for magnetically-attached accessories and more, and Apple's involvement in the new standard should reduce the likelihood of an "iPhone and everyone else" split in the industry. That's a big deal for accessories you use every day.

Best of CES 2023 - BMW E Ink Car

Sometimes, even the biggest CES news can seemingly vanish into the memory hole by the time next year's show rolls around. That's partly why BMW's refined E Ink car wrap technology is so impressive, a commitment by the German automaker to not only show its color-changing skin is technically feasible, but that it can be refined toward a commercial release.

In 2022, the BMW iX Flow concept was an SUV that could flicker between black and white like an electric cuttlefish. For CES 2023, the BMW i Vision Dee adds color e-paper to the equation, a rainbow skin that animates around the automaker's vision of an electric performance car for driving enthusiasts. It's a refinement that truly feels like the best part of the Consumer Electronics Show: a proof of concept that goes back to the labs and only gets better, and that's what makes it SlashGear's Best of CES 2023.