The most bizarre tech we’ve seen in 2020

Sometimes you see a new device that looks a little…well…bonkers. But there’s a certain appeal to oddly shaped or conceptual gadgets. They’re curiosities and make you wonder how they could possibly be useful. Each year, tech companies develop conceptual—or not so conceptual—products with unique designs to help make our lives easier. We’re covering some of the strangest ones we’ve seen so far in 2020.

The most bizarre tech we’ve seen in 2020
Petit Qoobo Tailed Cushion Robot with a Fluffy Design

New technologies start as conceptual. And for that reason, many of the latest product designs may look a little weird at first. If you’re of a certain age, you’ll remember how space-agey it was to hang your TV on the wall for the first time. These products look weird but ultimately turn out to be quite useful. They may even spark changes throughout their industries, like that wall-mounted TV. Bizarre tech can set the tone for the future, and we get a peek at it every year at CES.

While CES 2020 unveiled some pretty cool products, it also introduced unusual ones as well. So we’re delving into the curious designs, peculiar concepts, and far-out ideas that we’ve encountered this year.  Here is our list of the most bizarre tech we’ve seen so far in 2020.

LuluPet AI Smart Cat Litter Box Pet Health Monitor

Cleaning the kitty litter box is one of the most dreaded household chores, but nowadays you can avoid it altogether. According to The Telegraph, following the “LavvieBot” that debuted at CES 2019, “smart” litter trays are what every cat owner wants. Many self-clean and can analyze your pet’s stools to let you know if they’re sick. That might be a little more than Fluffy bargained for, but pet owners know that their furry friend’s waste can tell a lot about their health.

The Lulu Pet’s AI Smart Cat Litter box was an honoree in CES 2020’s innovation award. The Guardian tells us that the product has “…built-in stool and urine image recognition” and “excretory behavioral algorithms.” The author notes that this is probably not a phrase you ever expected to read.

Samsung Becon Scalp Scanner Hair Loss Device 

Another bizarre product that came out in 2020 was the Samsung Becon Scalp Scanner Hair Loss Device. At first glance, you might think that it shoots out UV light that helps hair regrow. Then you realize that it’s a reader that scans your scalp’s condition and recommends customized treatment options. This seems a little disappointing since you were hoping you could use it to treat your hair loss in the privacy of your bathroom. But, looking closer, you see that’s precisely what it does, indirectly. Thinning hair is a sensitive issue, especially for men who might not want to visit a doctor about their condition. The Scalp Scanner helps you treat and prevent further hair loss yourself using appropriate hair care products.

Petit Qoobo Tailed Cushion Robot

Yup, a headless robotic kitten will find its market with seniors in nursing homes. While it looks odd, the Petit Qoobo Tailed Cushion Robot will provide “comforting communication that warms your heart the way animals do.” Apparently, Yukai Engineering produced the kitten in response to demand for a more “portable” version of a larger product.

The Petit Qoobo responds to touch just like a cat or dog thanks to a built-in accelerometer. It’s complete with a vibrating, purr-like movement, and a cute tail that wags. This robotic kitty could also be an excellent solution for people who have allergies or live in apartments that don’t allow pets.

Ao Air The Atmōs Wearable Air Purifier

The Ao Air The Atmōs Wearable Air Purifier looks like a futuristic face mask, which, in light of the current global situation, might not be that odd after all. In any case, this wearable air purifier doesn’t need a tight seal to work, so it’s ideal if you’re exercising or have facial hair. Unlike paper air masks and ginormous respirators, it has a transparent body. This lets others read the emotions on your face while you breathe filtered air. It’s great for city dwellers where there’s lots of pollution from cars, allergy sufferers, and people who live in areas prone to wildfires.

According to the company website, The Ao Air The Atmōs Wearable Air Purifier is 25x better than the N95 in protecting you from particulate matter. It also has a Bluetooth brain that continually monitors your breathing and adapts its performance to ensure your protection.

L’Oreal Perso Lipstick and Skincare Creation Device 

Does the Perso lipstick mixer by L’Oreal belong on a list of the most bizarre tech? You could make a case either way. Regardless, this gadget lets you customize your makeup in a way you never dreamed possible. When you connect the Perso to its app, it can mix foundation, lipstick, and other skincare products to your preference.

L’Oreal Perso Lipstick and Skincare Creation Device

L’Oreal Perso Lipstick and Skincare Creation Device in White

According to The Telegraph, the Perso can also connect to social media accounts and let you create a lip color similar to one of your favorite “influencers” is wearing. Is this the future of makeup? Time will tell.

Samsung’s Bot Chef

Seeing a disembodied robot arm chopping up onions on your kitchen counter is a little creepy.  However, in Samsung’s vision for the future, AI robots help us through all of our daily tasks. The Samsung Bot Chef is a prototype robot that can chop, sauté, make a salad, and pour coffee. Samsung terms it a “co-bot,” or a robot that works with you instead of taking over.

Samsung's Bot Chef

Samsung’s Bot Chef / Credit: Photo by John Locher/AP/Shutterstock (10520287c)

According to Science Focus, Samsung says that the Bot chefs were created with accessibility in mind. To help people cook who can’t. The company wants to keep these robots affordable for those who need one.

Y-Brush 10-Second Deep Cleaning Toothbrush

This is probably the weirdest shaped toothbrush that we have ever seen. But that doesn’t mean it’s not useful. The Y-Brush 10-Second Deep Cleaning Toothbrush looks like a mouth full of bristles instead of teeth, but it promises to deep-clean your teeth in 10 seconds. That’s right. This toothbrush saves you time brushing. It’s possible with the Y-Brush’s 96 bristles, which can clean half of your mouth at one time.

The Y-Brush was introduced at CES 2020, and you can currently buy it. It’s available in four sizes, so you can be sure this toothbrush will fit comfortably in your mouth. Likewise, the flexible mouthpiece ensures an excellent user experience.

Digit Bipedal Robot

The next time you order something online, it might just be a robot who drops it off at your doorstep. It’s a likely future, especially now that the Agility Robotics Digit Bipedal Robot is available for sale. This robot is the shape and size of a small human. With LIDAR and other sensors, the robot is aware of its surroundings and can safely carry packages up to 40 pounds. It’s perfect for a variety of industries, like logistics, warehouses, telepresence, and industrial inspection.

Kohler Numi 2.0 Intelligent Toilet

People in Japan would tell us that this is not bizarre tech, but a way of life. There are better ways to go to the toilet, and the Kohler Numi 2.0 Intelligent Toilet is one of them. This clever toilet combines comfort and entertainment, thanks to built-in surround sound speakers. It also has mood lighting. Along with the futuristic vibe, the Numi 2.0 even works with your voice. Just ask Alexa, and you can listen to your favorite playlist and adjust the light. The Numi 2.0 comes complete with the Kohler PureWarmth toilet set, so you can say good-bye to cold toilet seats forever.

Samsung Ballie Rolling Robot 

Typically, a tennis ball that follows you around could be on the unsettling side. However, the Samsung Ballie Rolling Robot is adorable. This round little companion bot can follow you around your home and respond to your voice commands. It’ll help you reach your health goals and keep you on your schedule throughout the day. Ballie is your personal assistant. Just tell this robot when you need to schedule in your yoga session, and it’ll be on your to-do list. The Ballie also acts as a remote control for any of your IoT devices. Also, this robot can use its built-in camera to patrol your home, working as a mini security guard. With Ballie in your house, you’ll be able to ask it to record important milestones or even wake you up in the morning.

Segway-Ninebot S-Pod Two-Wheeled Vehicle

A two-wheeled vehicle that carts you around while you sit is a strange sight. But the Segway-Ninebot S-Pod Two-Wheeled Vehicle balances on its own as you ride in a seated position. It’s a self-balancing wheelchair that can travel at a maximum speed of 24 miles per hour. Considering that’s quite a bit faster than you can walk—and sometimes drive, it can get you to work on time. The unique, egg-shaped design is another reason the Ninebot S-Pod makes our list of the most bizarre tech we’ve seen in 2020.

Bizarre tech and curious gadgets always capture our attention here at Gadget Flow. These devices are charming in the way they try to solve our everyday problems. Whether they set the tone for their industry or fizzle out within the year, these weird electronics get us thinking and hoping about the future.

Lauren has been writing and editing since 2008. She loves working with text and helping writers find their voice. When she's not typing away at her computer, she cooks and travels with her husband and two daughters.
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