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Best tech of CES 2014

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The Consumer Electronics Show is in full swing in Las Vegas, booths heaving with tech destined to be obsolete by next Thursday.

We've rounded up the best products and design concept from the showcase for you to pencil into your Christmas wish list.

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Pebble Steel

Price: £152 ($249)

Arrives: 28 January

While Apple stays decidedly mute on its iWatch, the only smartwatch worth bothering with has received a welcome style overhaul. As well as swapping out plastic for metal, the Pebble Steel's new design comes with a toughened Gorilla Glass display and interchangeable leather and steel straps. A new Pebble appstore will also simplify the hunt for the watch's latest face designs and apps.

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Valve's 13 Steam Machines

Price: Various

Arrives: TBA

No, they aren't tiny saunas. These are the biggest change to living-room gaming since Nintendo ditched buttons for waving. Using Valve's Steam operating system, this new generation of gaming PCs is hoping to kick the console out from under your TV with easily downloadable games, upgradable components and more variety than you can shake at a Kinect. Find out more over at the Steam store.

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PulseWallet

From the pages of a sci-fi book we've not read, the PulseWallet is an alarmingly-invasive payment method we can't wait to get spooked out by. Placing your palm on the PulseWallet's scanner allows it to capture the unique layout of your veins - like a fingerprint, but creepier - and record it with your card details. Paying for coffee will soon be as easy as an unreturned high five.

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Sony's 4K camcorder

Price: £1,939

Arrives: May 2014

Ushering in unprecedented detail to future series of You've Been Framed, the Sony Handycam FDR-AX100 brings professional-quality 4K video into our clumsy hands. Built-in near field communication and Wi-Fi will let you stream directly to smartphones and tablets, while noise-cancelling trickery reduces noises made directly behind the camera.

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Return of the Polaroid

Price: £182 ($299)

Arrives: Autumn 2014

Polaroid (remember them?) have unveiled a range of nifty camera gadgets in the hope of capturing some of the Instacrowd. Foremost is the oddly named Socialmatic : first revealed as a design concept in 2012, this palm-sized digital camera couples an Android operating system with an ink-free colour photo printer, allowing y0u to share pictures of latte art across both the digital and physical worlds simultaneously.

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Intel Edison, the wearable PC

Price: TBA

Arrives: Mid-2014

The size of an SD card, Edison could be the future of wearable technology. Intel have managed to squeeze Wi-Fi and Bluetooth support into this micro-PC, and while the baby monitoring system used to show off its potential wasn't hugely exciting, it begs the question of what other developers could create for a computer that could be powered by the wearer's own body movement.

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Samsung's 8K TV

Concept design

HD? That's so 2012. The future is 8K. Or at least it would be if Netflix had any content detailed enough to warrant it (though the new season of House of Cards will be available in 4K). Boasting 13 more inches than Sharp's 8K model of 2012, the 98-inch Samsung Quad Ultra HD concept TV has more pixels than anyone knows what to do with - 7,680 x 4,320 to be exact. And yes, it does just look like a big TV, as this video demo from CNET demonstrates.

(Images: Pebble, Alienware, PulseWallet)

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