10 Best Products for Families from CES 2021
The 2021 Consumer Electronics Show included lots of great finds for families, from a crib with build-in monitoring to a magic box that disinfects your phone while charging it. We've rounded up 10 of our editors' favorite finds from this year’s virtual trade show.
Dawn Powerwash Dish Spray
Why has this never existed before? Of course you should be able to spray dishes clean! The spray function on Dawn Powerwash Dish Spray is powerful and targeted, making it easy to spray and rinse the cutting board, say, in between chopping meat and chopping vegetables. For parents of babies, it is the best thing ever for cleaning the highchair tray. It will also be brilliant for office sinks and school sinks, too, when we’re all back to that. Meanwhile, using that spray nozzle might actually make it fun for the kids to help with the dishes.
To buy: $13.68 for starter kit with refill; amazon.com
Keep screens off but your kids entertained with stories through the tonies Toniebox. Think of it as a high-tech tape deck: You sit a character (a Tonie) on top of the 5-inch speaker cube (the Toniebox) and it plays that character’s story to entertain your little one. (It doesn’t even run on WiFi so no data-security worries!) The library includes tales from Disney—yes, there’s an Elsa!—one for bedtime songs, one for birthday songs, and more. A Toniebox also comes with a Creative Tonie used to record and store up to 90 minutes of your own songs and stories, which you set up through an app. Ages 3+
Cradlewise Smart Crib
The Cradlewise's built-in video monitor watches your baby sleep and sends insights to an app on your phone. It also has a gentle bouncing motion and soothing sounds to ease your baby back to sleep if they’re waking too early. Lower the mattress after six months and it becomes a mini crib you can keep using until your baby turns 2.
This smart bassinet had a soft launch in 2020 in the Bay Area but it will be more widely available in 2021, with preorders starting in March for bassinets shipping in June.
To buy: $1499 preorder begins in March; cradlewise.com
Coding Critters MagiCoders
Learning Resources Coding Critters are getting a fun update this summer. The new MagiCoders work more like remote-control toys and let kids do all the easy programming on a magic wand. Keying in a sequence of movements can send either the unicorn or dragon MagiCoder across a table or around a room. They can also interact with their accessories, chasing a magic ball, for instance.
Big bonus: The toys don’t require a screen and never need an app, still rare for a STEM toy. Ages 4+
To buy: Will be $50 on Amazon this summer. For now, find Coding Critters on sale for $18.10 on amazon.com
- RELATED: Best Toys of 2020 for Preschoolers
Panasonic nanoe Hair Dryer, model EH-NA67-W
With less-frequent salon visits and kids stuck inside we can use all the help we can get with hairstyling at home. The 2021 version of Panasonic’s popular nanoe Hair Dryer promises to keep moisture in your hair even as it dries, protecting against breakage and delivering more shine. It comes with three nozzles: An oscillating quick-dry nozzle that protects against burns; a concentrator nozzle if you like to target one section of hair at a time; and a diffuser to keep curls and waves in place and add volume. They promise it delivers for all hair types and all genders.
To buy: Will be $150 on Amazon at the end of January. For now, find the current nanoe, model EH-NA65-K, at amazon.com
- RELATED: Parents Best of Beauty Awards 2020
Hatch Rest Mini
This small device uses soothing sounds to drown out noises that might wake your baby and keep them from slumber. Unlike most other white-noise machines, the Hatch Rest Mini pairs with an app so you can control it without walking into the bedroom, and you can set it to play for the duration of nap time or just for the first few minutes while your kid falls asleep.
To buy: $40 at hatch.com
Einova Mundus Pro
This magic box takes all the viruses and bacteria off your phone, keys, jewelry, pens, and whatever else fits inside. (Not the whole house, unfortunately.) And it works in just 8 minutes. The Mundus Pro UV-C Disinfecting Tray is also a wireless charger so it will boost your phone’s battery if you sit it on top of the box, and it has a USB port on one side to charge wired devices, too.
To buy: $119 at einova.com
Febreze Fade Defy Plug Air Freshener
This latest plug-in air freshener from Febreze digitally releases its contents so you won’t run through it too fast. There’s no strong scent to a Febreze Fade Defy Plug Air Freshener, so this is not what you want if you like your home to smell like pumpkin spice or apples. The tech idea behind this line keeps air smelling clean and more like odor-free so you don’t notice the traces of your sweet pets, say, or the diaper pail.
To buy: $6 at target.com
Cync Indoor Camera
GE Lighting, a Savant company, has created its first indoor camera, part of its newly rebranded Cync line (which was C by GE), and it will be out in May. While it's not being sold as a baby monitor, it’s immediately apparent that it could be good for a budget-minded family looking for a way to monitor the crib for less than $100. The Cync works with an app on your phone and the video data is stored in its micro SD card, not on the cloud, which keeps data secure. It’s also great to use just to keep an eye on the house from wherever you may be.
To buy: $70 starting in May. For now, you can find more details at gelighting.com
Shure MV5C Home Office Microphone
Assuming remote schooling and WFH life will still be around a while, you may want to invest in a decent microphone. Laptop mics pick up every sound in the room and can have trouble projecting your soft-spoken school kid. This new Shure MV5C Home Office Microphone zeros in on the user’s voice and downplays environmental noise. It’s really key for teachers, too, who need to talk all day with minimal distraction. It plugs right in to your laptop or desktop and can be used with or without headphones.
To buy: $99 on amazon.com