Expect to see lots of new gadgets make their debut this week when the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas opens Thursday, Though the show is limited to technology professionals, you can experience a little gadget fever at a few Strip hotels.
Through the end of February, Caesars Palace is testing a virtual reality lounge inside one of its cocktail bars. Guests at Alto Bar can play 360-degree games in the space that has morphed into the Oculus Virtual Reality Lounge. (Yes, you have to wear those bulky headsets to play.)
Guests can try out four Oculus Rifts sets with Touch support during sessions lasting about five minutes. Technically speaking, there’s no charge to give it a whirl. But a hotel spokeswoman says in an email: “Guests are encouraged to purchase a beverage of any sort prior to the experience.” Since alcohol is served, gamers must be at least 21.
Down the street at Wynn Las Vegas, the Amazon Echo is being introduced as an in-room amenity. In a project that will begin this month, the 4,748 hotel rooms at Wynn and Encore will be equipped with the voice-activated wizards.
That means you’ll be able to verbally control drapes, lights, television and thermostat. You’ll also be able to access news headlines and music from online radio stations on the Echo.
Wynn claims its resort will be the “first in the world” to provide such technology to all of its guests, a news release says.
The Consumer Electronics Show, or CES, will mark its 50th anniversary this year. When it launched in the late 1970s, devices we now think of as obsolete — VCRs, bulky camcorders and old-school video — were all the rage.