The reviewer has been compensated in the form of a Best Buy Gift Card and/or received the product/service at a reduced price or for free.
So Best Buy sent me to a store nearby to check out their new Intel Experience. I went into it thinking it was just a space with new computers and whatnot but it was so much more.
79% of Americans are excited about new technologies and want the chance to learn and experience them but half are frustrated by the lack of access to them; what they read or see in the media is not enough, according to a new study by Intel and Toluna.
So Intel and Best Buy teamed up to create the new Intel Technology Experience zones at 50 Best Buy stores across the U.S. You get to play, explore, and be inspired by the power of technology with hands-on activities. No matter if you’re a technophobe or self proclaimed techie you can enjoy this.
It’s a 240 square feet zone that shows you the power of the Intel chip, which is the technology behind these great new and innovative products and is the same power that our tablets and laptops at home rely on. The Intel Experience zone might not look like much if you’re walking by buy it but if you start playing with everything you’ll be wowed, guaranteed. I had so much fun. This is your opportunity to see, touch, and play with innovative new technologies you may have heard about. There’s specially trained associates in the zone to answer any questions you might have and play with you. Without PJ (my stores specialist) I probably wouldn’t have got to see all the Intel Experience had to offer so if you go into the store definitely let the associate help you out.
The 3 current actives at the store were the 3D printing, virtual reality game, and an interactive DJ experience with Neyo. I got to see the 3D printer work on a small vase, I showed off my racing skills (or lack thereof) on Mars and I got to remix the beat and control the lights to an unreleased Neyo song. The dope thing about the Intel Experience zone is that it always changes, each season there’s different activities and newer technology.
The 3D Printer Station is up first. Now I’ve been hearing more and more about 3D printers but I’ve never really paid too much attention to them. The Cube Wireless 3D Printer ($999) is 6″H x 6″W x 6″D and the first 3D printer for consumers.
You may ask yourself now what in the world am I going to print on this thing? As long as it fits in the cube the possibilities are almost endless. Jay Leno prints out car parts on his 3D printer and the Cleveland Clinic even prints organs. And I’m pretty sure (not really) Oprah has one and does something fabulous with it. It’s simple to use, all you need is the phone app or computer software by Cube Wireless and watch it work.
These are a few things that have been printed on the Cube Wireless. From the link chain bracelets to phone cases to toys for the kids. PJ said each thing took from 2-6 hours to print. The plastic cartridges are sold separately for $50 and come in come in 5 colors for now.
Now a 3D printer isn’t something the average household needs or can even afford as of now but it’s a peek into the future. Could you imagine the money we could save using one of these? Some designers are even printing shoes now. I can see one of these being in every house within the next decade.
The next stop was off-roading on Mars in an augmented reality world. You pick up one of those tablets, hold it up to the Mars stage and drive around in an interactive game. Now this activity isn’t really about the game. It’s about introducing the augmented reality software that uses the power of the Intel processor to fluidly combine the real world with your device. Augmented reality software isn’t that new, there’s plenty of apps out there. but most people don’t know that. There’s apps where you can stand on the street, pull out your phone, point it in a direction and in a street view see where restaurants are located. Want to redecorate? How cool would it be to hold up a tablet in a room, open an app and pull in furniture and decor from the hottest stores? No more imagining how your house will look, you can see it for yourself without stepping foot in one store. As Intel technology keeps getting better and better, your life can get easier and easier.
The last activity is the DJ experience with Neyo. PJ and I tag teamed remixing the beat and controlling the lighting at a Neyo concert. It was super fun. Below is a quick video of me working the beat.
One the other side of the zone was 4 of the latest tablets and PCs that are all powered by newest Intel technology. There was an extremely thin laptop that didn’t even have use fans because of the power of the new Intel M processor. I spent the most time of the Dell XPS 18.4″ Portable Touch-Screen Desktop ($999). This big ole baby can recognize up to 10 hands and is pretty cool. It’s freaking fantastic for families. I had tons of fun playing Chubby Kings with PJ and his trainee; there was plenty of space and the screen was so clear and vibrant.
What I really loved about all these products and activites was that you can enjoy them by yourself and they are family friendly, even the 3D printer.
I’m like a total Apple snob. It’s all Apple everything in my house but I left the Intel Experience zone wondering why the hell I don’t have this much fun on my $1800 Macbook Pro and my iPad.
If you have a Best Buy store in your area (check here) that has the Intel Experience I definitely recommend you go in and check it out. I consider myself a techie and I was ashamed at how I had no clue about all the new products and technology out now. This trip definitely stepped my game up.
For more information about the Intel Technology Experience areas, including a list of stores, visit www.bestbuy.com/intel.