More than 1,200 startups are exhibiting this week at CES 2019 in Las Vegas, NV. Elektor is on hand to sift through all the innovation and deliver details about the startups whose technologies are sure to wow the electrical engineers and maker pros among you.

​Let’s review several of the most promising innovators.


Makers, students, STEM educators, and pro engineers alike will love the Argex’s watchX, which is a fully functional smartwatch that you can assemble and code. More than a watch, the kit enables you build a variety of DIY projects.
Argex watchX at CES 2019
Argex's watchX kit
The watchX is accessible to wide range of users, as young as 9 years old.

“We have two options. You can program it with the Scratch Lego-like programming language,” said Cofounder and CEO Mustafa Tulu. "Or, if you are an advanced user, if you can code Arduino, you can code watchX because it shares the same bootloaders and same hardware structure.”

Last year, the company launched the watch on Indiegogo and received 2,000 orders. Now they offer new accessories for watchX, including a gamepad, a rover robot, and an Arduino adapter for custom projects. Check out their current Indiegogo campaign.

Next Industries

Next Industries, an Italy-based developer of IoT sensor solutions, is demonstrating its TACTIGON SKIN (T-SKIN) gesture controller at CES 2019. Using artificial intelligence and sensors, the well-designed controller acts as an extension of a user’s hand, and thus has numerous applications.

“Our new product, TACTIGON SKIN, is a controller with Bluetooth Low Energy onboard, a gyroscope, magnetometer, accelerometer, microcontroller, and pressure sensor,” said Next Industries CEO Massimiliano Bellino.
Next Industries's T-SKIN at CES 2019
The T-SKIN controller
Before introducing T-SKIN, Next Industries made the TACTIGON board, which is a small board featuring a gyroscope, accelerometer, Bluetooth Low Energy, and a microcontroller.

The company plans to launch a Kickstarter campaign for the T-SKIN in February 2019. Additional details are available on the T-SKIN website.


Kwambio is an innovative manufacturer specializing in on-demand, 3-D-printed ceramics. Today, the young company runs a printing facility in Ukraine and has offices and showrooms in London, New York, and Hartford, CT. This week at CES 2019, Kwambio is presenting an industrial-grade printer and a desktop printer that’s suitable for an office or gallery.
Kwambio's 3D printed designs at CES 2019
Kwambip's 3D-printed ceramics
According to CEO Vlad Usov, the company focuses on three market segments: art and design (glazed ceramics), industrial applications (high-temperature ceramics for functional parts), and healthcare (bioprinting and implants).
“We are a full-cycle manufacturer from the powder — ceramic and bio powders — to the hardware and software. And also we run our own facilities so we offer not only equipment for sale and material but also on-demand printing services,” Usov explained from the company's booth at CES 2019.

BionIT Labs

BionIT Labs is a Lecce, Italy-based developer of the Adam’s Hand, which is a myolectric hand prosthesis for amputees. Based on patent-pending technology, the design enables a user to control all the fingers with a single motor.
Typical prosthetics devices use preset poses (e.g., a circular grasp) from which the user must choose for grasping an object. The BionIT Labs solution is novel in that the “user has only to approach an object and to decide to open or close the end without preselecting,” said Giovanni Zappatore, CEO and Founder of BionIT Labs.
The Adam's Hand from BionIT at CES 2019
BionIT's Adam's Hand at CES 2019
The company was launched in 2018, but the project started a few years ago.

“After winning a €30,000 grant, we passed from the alpha prototype to the beta prototype. Now we are in the fundraising phase and we seek money to reach the product commercialization in 2020,” said Zappatore.

More updates from CES 2019 are availble in Part 2 of this series