The most ridiculous and bizarre tech gadget in 25 years

Not every tool is a winner. And as it turns out, few of them are total losers. The huge boom in electronics known as CES 2023 It’s in the books and a lot of it has appeared strange tools From pee-reading toilets to a cutting board with a screen. But what if we turn back the clock to take in the old CES shows?

Over the past 20 years, I’ve seen gadgets so amazing that sometimes it seems they only exist because journalists like me will write about them. But it’s time to call the really awful people out, the worst of the worst. Broom shoes, toilet paper robots, MP3 gunslingers, it’s time to shine!

The most interesting part about this scammer gallery is that some of these products—Pepe’s pet dryer, HapiFork and Hushme, to name a few—are still for sale today. That’s right: you blew it, you lunatics!

Dyson Zone Air Purifier

A man wearing headphones and a mask

Nothing unusual here.

Andrew Lanxon/CNET

Not technically a CES product, as it was announced during 2022, but Dyson was showing off the Zone speakers in Las Vegas during CES 2023. Although the Zone sounds like it should be a COVID mask, unfortunately that’s not what it does. . According to the Dyson website, development is over the area It started way back in 2016 As a personal air filter – for pollution mainly – and as such, it was never designed to protect against COVID. Furthermore, one critic claimed that force fans of the tool could help Maximize your chances of contracting the Coronavirus. CNET’s Katie Collins, who tried it out at Dyson’s UK headquarters, thought it “Too cool and weird to ignore. “

Read more: Dyson Zone Air Filtering Headphones on sale in January for $949

Charmin Rollbot

Charmin Rollbot


Computer peripheral maker Razer is the king of creating “look at me” products specifically for CES, but its toilet tissue brand Charmin became infamous for this entry of 2020. That’s right, in the year that saw Mass panic buying toilet paper The robot that can bring you more came! Coincidence? Yes… probably. RollBot was never a real product, but we loved it/hated it anyway.

Read more: These Charmin robots make us wonder: Is defecation the next technology frontier?

Colibri smart toothbrush

iPhone next to Kolibree toothbrush

Kolibree’s new connected toothbrush tracks users’ activity, helping them brush their teeth in the most efficient way possible.


Remember when we had to wash our hands for 20 seconds We sing songs to ourselves? The same methodology also applies to brushing your teeth, but why should you use your brain and lips like a popsicle? There have been many smart toothbrushes over the years, but today I choose the Kolibree. Everything was fair Fine Until the arrival of “the world’s first connected electric toothbrush”. Happy birthday to you Happy birthday to you…

Read more: The Kolibri Connected Toothbrush aims to improve dental health

Taser MP3 clipboard

Clipboard Taser MP3

supreme defense

back in the 2000s, The iPod has become such a cultural phenomenon That each company hastened to create its own MP3 player. This culminated in one of the dumbest CES products in recent memory: the Tazer MP3 holster. Imagine trying to not only charge your clipboard but also connect it via USB to your computer to fill it with 1GB of tunes.

Read more: What every Taser needs: A music stand

Baby pet dryer

Pepe pet dryer

Baby is a desiccant for dogs and cats.

Patrick Holland/CNET

Want to find a new way to make your little dog or cat hate you forever? Lock them in a cube prison for 25 minutes (!) and expose them to hot air. This combination torture device/dryer could have cost you $660, or you could just throw a towel over your wet dog like a normal human.

Read more: At CES 2019, a $660 sauna will give your dog the jab of his life

Happy fork

Hapifork on a plate of food and a napkin


Throughout history, there have been many tools designed to limit normal human behavior, but this tool takes the cake (the pan). HapiFork is another vibrating tool that tells you to eat your meals more slowly (more than 20 minutes apart), with the idea that you’re less likely to overeat. Personally, I eat my own meals like I’m in prison, and so does your worst, HapiFork. I’ll eat with my hands if I have to! You are not my boss!

Read more: pull your food? Put on the brakes with HapiFork


A man with Hushme on his mouth

Silence in masking mode.

David Carnoy/CNET

Hushme is literally a “dumb” product – it’s designed to make its user mute other people in the immediate vicinity. It has been presented as useful on premises, but…if a fellow of mine gives me one of these, they’d better put on deflated shoes, to clean up the bits that have been trampled on with glee.

Read more: Hushme may be the weirdest and most useful wireless headphones ever


Belty belt smart in a display case

Make room for Belty, a smart pant-carrying device that slims or expands to adjust for granular changes to your waistline. It’s no joke.

Nick Stat/CNET

The original Belty was a typical smart belt with a motor inside that would adjust to whether you just ate or were sitting. Impractical as hell, but kind of cool? While there is a newer model, It is also called Balti, this one is even stranger – no auto sizing, but it does have a power bank charger in the buckle. Well, two things. Not just me Not I want a potential volatile compound near the nethers, I don’t want a series of devices connected there either.

Read more: Meet Balti, the silly but bizarre show-stealer unveiled at CES

Xybernaut Puma

A man designs the Xybernaut Puma wearable computer

Shaun Captain, formerly PC Consultant, designs Xybernaut Poma. via

Sean captain

First shown at CES 1998, the Hitachi Xybernaut wearable computer was a terrible idea long before then. Google glasses It was even a glint in Babak Parviz’s eye. The Windows CE-based Xybernaut Poma offered a 128MHz RISC processor and 32MB of RAM for the low price of $1,499, plus it’s strapped to your arm, face, and belt!

Read more: Wearable computers Fashion Hitachi

Denso vacuum shoes

The bottom of the Denso vacuum shoe

Sarah Teo/CNET

shoes. You wear them. It wears out, buy more. But that’s not exciting now, is it? They need Things Inside – telephones, rockets, rollers and … vacuum cleaners? There are a lot of puns I could make on even just the name of the Denso Vacuum shoes, but the fact that they existed at all was the biggest joke of all.

Read more: Vacuum shoes are showing up at CES because why not

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