Design first: Slick tech products win international design awards

Tech products stand out at the Red Dot design competition, which celebrates its 60th anniversary this year.

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Red Dot Awards

The Red Dot Awards single out exceptional designs. This year – which marked the 60th anniversary of the competition -- the product design jury reviewed 4,928 entries from 56 countries. The winning products represent 31 different categories that span from household and garden products to industrial equipment and electronics. Click through to see some of the most eye-catching tech winners.

cardboard virtual reality

Cardboard virtual reality viewer

Google aims to bring virtual reality to the masses with its flatpack Cardboard accessory, a foldable phone case that uses a pair of glass lenses and an app to turn a smartphone into a virtual reality viewer.

Manufacturer: Google, USA
In-house design: Google, USA
Jury statement: "Cardboard makes virtual reality come true for everyone who owns a smartphone. The die-cut cardboard solution is affordable and quite simple."

cisco teleconf

Desktop collaboration device

Cisco’s DX70 is a 14-inch touchscreen device for video communications, desktop sharing and other functions. Integration is key -- it supports HD video, UC features, Android applications, email and more within a single streamlined device.

Manufacturer: Cisco Systems, USA
In-house design: Cisco Systems, USA
Jury statement: "Cisco DX70 fulfills high demands of video communication due to its well-conceived technical details and optically appealing appearance."


Portable Bluetooth speaker

The four columns that make up Topneer’s portable Bluetooth speaker can be adjusted to form a stand for a smartphone or tablet or folded for a more compact setting.

Manufacturer: Topneer International Ltd., Hong Kong
In-house design: Honda Hu, Jimmy Wan , Hong Kong
Jury statement: "TransSpeakers is a clever combination of stand and speaker. A particular highlight is the silicone cover with its vivid colours."

led bulbs

Nanoleaf Bloom LED lightbulb

Nanoleaf Bloom is a dimmable LED light bulb that doesn’t need a dimmer – it works with a traditional light switch. The origami-looking bulb has a 27-year lifespan.

Manufacturer: Nanoleaf, Hong Kong
In-house design: Nanoleaf, Hong Kong
Jury statement: "An eye-catching colour palette as well as an unconventional bulb profile underline the convincing ease of use of this light bulb."

kano computer kit

Kano computer kit

Geared for kids, the Kano computer/coding kit comes with a Raspberry Pi 2 plus a wireless keyboard, DIY speaker, power and HDMI cables, wi-fi dongle, and other accessories.

Manufacturer: Kano, Great Britain
Design: Kano and Map, Great Britain
Jury statement: "Kano promotes creativity, teaches children new technologies in a playful way, and is produced in an environmentally friendly manner."


Catchbox wireless microphone

Got something to say? Make a grab for the Catchbox, a soft, wireless microphone designed to be thrown back and forth between audience members.

Manufacturer: Trick Technologies Oy, Finland
In-house design: Pyry Taanila, Timo Kauppila, Mikelis Studers, Finland
Jury statement: "A wireless microphone that people can throw to each another – adoption of this original and well-conceived design idea will break the ice in every discussion round."

sleep monitor

ResMed S+ sleep monitor

The ResMed S+ is a no-contact sleep monitor that tracks and analyzes sleep patterns using sensor technology. The system combines a bedside sleep monitor with a smartphone app and web-based app to help users track and improve their sleeping patterns.

Manufacturer: ResMed, Ireland
Design: Design Partners (Lukas Fuchs, Mathew Bates), Ireland
Jury statement: "The sculptural, floating form of ResMed S+ is an aesthetically pleasing addition to any modern bedroom interior."

adidas smart ball

Smart soccer ball

The Adidas miCoach Smart Ball gives players feedback on ball speed, spin and trajectory, and strike accuracy. Sensors in the ball analyze the forces acting on the ball and send the data via Bluetooth to the Smart Ball app on a player’s paired iOS device.

Manufacturer: Adidas, USA
In-house design: Scott Tomlinson, USA
Jury statement: "Equipped with sensors, the innovative Smart Ball opens up an entirely new dimension of football training; the accurate analysis of kicking technique promises high-precision training."

netgear arlo 34

Arlo home security camera

A magnetic ball mount enables Arlo, a wireless security camera from Netgear, to monitor multiple angles in a room. The device is weatherproof and equipped with infrared functions so it can be used indoors and outdoors.

Manufacturer: Netgear, USA
In-house design: John Ramones, Jenny Ouk , USA
Design: Enlisted Design (Beau Oyler, Julian Bagirov, Charles Bates, Jared Aller), USA
Jury statement: "This small camera considerably facilitates the monitoring of both home and yard as it can be integrated virtually anywhere."

thermaltake chassis

Gaming chassis: Thermaltake Core V51 mid-tower chassis

Designed for gamers, the Core V51 mid-tower chassis from Thermaltake has a perforated top panel for heat dissipation and rapid air intake. The chassis also features a tool-free drive bay design.

Manufacturer: Thermaltake Technology Co., Ltd., Taiwan
In-house design: Thermaltake Technology Co., Ltd., Taiwan
Jury statement: "This chassis offers outstanding features for gamers in particular. Components can be easily added, and heat management is efficient and well conceived."

bluetooth outlet thing

Smart socket

With the Smart BT-Plug, users can remotely control sockets and USB connectors—switch an appliance on or off via a mobile device, for example, or activate a timer. Users can control several outlets simultaneously and automatically monitor energy consumption.

Manufacturer: Gunitech Corp., Taiwan
In-house design: Kelly Chen, Taiwan
Jury statement: "With the Smart BT-Plug, it is possible to control household electrical connections from the couch."

normal 3d printed headphones

3D-printed earphones

Normal earphones are individually 3D-printed for each buyer for a custom fit. A three-button control works with any smartphone.

Manufacturer: Normal, USA
Design: Impel Studio, USA
Jury statement: "Innovative 3D printing technology is intelligently used in creating these headphones to deliver a tailor-made product for every single customer."

sony tennis sensor

Tennis sensor

Attached to a tennis racket, the SSE-TN1 sensor from Sony monitors swing speed, ball spin and speed, impact position and other statistics. The device aims to pinpoint where balls were hit by using audio analysis and studying racket vibrations, for example.

Manufacturer: Sony Corporation, Japan
In-house design: Matthew Forrest, Yasuhide Hosoda, Nobuhiro Jogano, Katsuji Miyazawa, Japan
Jury statement: "This sensor merges sophisticated technology and functional design into a product that provides players with important performance data."

sharestick router

Share Stick router to go

The Share Stick travel router works as a portable wireless router (10 devices can be connected at the same time) and as 3G-to-Wi-Fi converter. A built-in battery powers the router and acts as an emergency power source for your gadgets.

Manufacturer: Trend Power Limited, Hong Kong
In-house design: Ho Yeung Lam, Hong Kong
Jury statement: "Exhibiting an amazing multifunctionality, the Share Stick presents itself as a well-conceived travel companion. Its fresh appearance is also pleasing."

applica docking system

Applica docking system and communications hub

The Applica system handles communications for workstations – it holds power and data cables and distributes them across nine connectors for mobile devices. It also includes connections for permanently installed hardware such as monitors or printers.

Manufacturer: ASSMANN Büromöbel GmbH & Co. KG, Germany
In-house design: Gerd Lauszus, Germany
Design: B·PLAN (Wolfgang Blume), Germany
Jury statement: "Applica convinces with its broad functional scope: uniting the functionality of a load-bearing desk support, intelligent multi-plug connector and fashionable screen, it is an effective piece of office equipment."


Handheld stabilizer for smartphones

Shoot smartphone videos while you’re on the go – running, jumping, skateboarding – with the SwiftCam M3s. The device features three-axis stabilization, a 360-degree horizontal pan, and joystick control for panning and tilting.

Manufacturer: SwiftCam Technologies Group Company Limited, Hong Kong
In-house design: Jacky Cheung, Kenneth Choi, Hong Kong
Jury statement: "The SwiftCam M3s is compatible with many standard smartphones and impresses with this versatility for a wide range of periphery equipment."

HERO sos device

HERO emergency tracking device

A personal security system, HERO tracks users with a conventional SIM card and includes a built-in fall sensor. An SOS button enables two-way audio if a user needs assistance. Caregiverscan be alerted if a user travels outside a predefined zone. 

Manufacturer: HERO GmbH, Germany
In-house design: HERO
Jury statement: "Elderly persons and persons in need of help as well as children who travel unaccompanied involve a great deal of responsibility – HERO provides efficient and functional support."

huawei power attachment

External power bank for Huawei smartphones

Slim and sleek, Hauwei’s AP005/006 external power banks contain soft lithium polymer batteries and are designed to resist dents and scratches while boosting mobile device power. 

Manufacturer: Huawei Device, China
In-house design: Yuan Ding, Shuo Zhang, China
Jury statement: “The elegantly designed external power-banks of the AP005/006 series are a convincingly efficient addition to Huawei smartphones.”

oled tv

Curved OLED TV

LG’s OLED TV has a distinctive curved shape and a metal stand with a transparent connection to the screen that’s designed to make it appear as if the display is floating.

Manufacturer: LG Electronics Inc., South Korea
In-house design: Byung-Mu Huh, Sun-Ha Park, Sang-Ik Lee, South Korea
Jury statement: "The particular appeal of this television arises through interplay between the functionally designed stand with its combination of glass and metal and the curved, thin screen."

garden sensor

Edyn garden sensor

Designed by fuseproject, the solar-powered Edyn garden sensor can measure and record soil conditions, such as nutrient levels, temperature and sunlight exposure. The data is sent to the Edyn app, which taps into a plant database to suggest suitable plants and plant pairings based on soil condition.

Manufacturer: fuseproject, USA
In-house design: fuseproject, USA
Jury statement: "The Edyn garden sensor opens up an innovative way for soil-specific plant cultivation and furthermore impresses as a formally concise design."

air conditioner

Slim air conditioner

A minimalist profile distinguishes the Kirigamine Zen MSZ-EF Series room air conditioners from Mitsubishi. The streamlined wall-mounted indoor units are designed to complement modern interior settings.

Manufacturer: Mitsubishi Electric Corporation, Japan
In-house design: Takayuki Nishiguchi, Japan
Jury statement: "The Kirigamine Zen presents a convincing symbiosis of energy-saving technology and minimalist, elegant design."


Orbis teleconference system

The Orbis conference system from beyerdynamic includes flat microphone units, a separate speaker module and small dimensioned central controls – all of which are slim and streamlined.

Manufacturer: beyerdynamic GmbH & Co. KG, Germany
Design: Matthias Leipholz, Germany
Jury statement: "Due to reduced lines the Orbis conference system integrates even into an upscale ambience. Its controls are operable intuitively."

Electroluminescent charge cable

Electroluminescent charge cable

Electroluminescent charge cables from Pilot Electronics let you see that a device is getting charged. When battery power is low, the light moves fast. As the charge builds, the light moves more slowly, stopping when the device is fully charged.

Manufacturer: Pilot Electronics, USA
In-house design: Calvin Wang, Yin Zheng Kai, Hai Tran, Lesley Leong, EL Shenzen, Joseph Dong, USA
Jury statement: “The flowing light impulse indicates the charge status of a device even from far away and makes the often troublesome observation of the display obsolete: an innovative solution which exhibits a playful approach.”

docomo charger

No-tangle charge cord

Cut cord clutter at home or on the go with NTT docomo’s portable AC adapter.

Manufacturer: NTT docomo, Inc., Japan
In-house design: NTT docomo, Inc., Japan
Jury statement: "The charger convinces with clear, compact dimensions and especially through its innovative idea of an aid for simply rolling up the cable. This means no more tangled cables in the pocket."


ConferenceCam Connect videoconferencing system

Designed for small workgroups, Logitech’s ConferenceCam Connect is a portable, all-in-one videoconferencing system. The system is optimized for teams of up to six people; users can view HD 1080p video with 360-degree sound and wireless screen-mirror projection.

Manufacturer: Logitech, USA
In-house design: Logitech Design, USA
Design: MNML, USA
Jury statement: "The ConferenceCam Connect proves to be functionally impressive and an uncomplicated video conference solution for groups as well as for mobile use."

black onyx

Black OnyX indoor LED display

Geared for concerts and exhibitions, the Black OnyX from ROE Visual is a high-performance indoor LED display. It’s lightweight for easy transport and assembly, and it can be set up in multiple ways – stacked, hung or curved, for example.

Manufacturer: ROE Visual Co., Ltd., China
Design: LKK Design Shenzhen Co., Ltd. (Wenbo Li, Gang Wang, Suikai Lin, Yichao Li), China
Jury statement: "The design of the Black OnyX combines lightness and functionality. The handle for transporting the display is particularly practical."

zebra mc18

Mobile shopping assistant

Designed for self-service supermarket shopping, the MC18 mobile computer from Zebra Technologies makes it easy for shoppers to scan items, receive discount coupons, view item suggestions, and keep a running tally for fast checkout.

Manufacturer: Zebra Technologies, USA
In-house design: Edward Hackett, Mark Fountain, USA
Design: Thinkable Studio, Great Britain
Jury statement: "With its minimalist appearance, the MC18 corresponds to the current aesthetic zeitgeist. Its rounded contours provide pleasant haptic qualities."

flir camera

Flir thermal imaging camera

With the Flir C2, users can find and show hidden heat patterns that could indicate hotspots, energy waste, structural defects, plumbing clogs, HVAC issues and other problems. The pocket-size camera has a 3-inch LCD display and a built-in LED spotlight that allows the camera to be used in dark places.

Manufacturer: Flir Systems AB, Sweden
Design: Howl Designstudio (Jens Johansson, Oscar Karlsson), Sweden
Jury statement: "This thermal imaging camera features an inspiringly handy and lightweight design, lending it highly versatility."

zu100 router

ZU100 router

Singled out for its aesthetics, the ZU100 router from Shenzhen Zivoo Technology supports broadband connections up to 1 GB and includes a 1 TB hard drive.

Manufacturer: Shenzhen Rapoo Technology Co., Ltd., China
Design: Shenzhen Zivoo Technology Co., Ltd., China
Jury statement: "Contrary to conventional routers, this sophisticated product integrates also in environments with high aesthetic demands."

Philips Linea cordless phone

Philips Linea cordless phone

Weights are integrated into the base of the Philips Linea cordless phone for stability, and magnets provide secure docking.

Manufacturer: Gibson Innovations, Hong Kong
In-house design: Gibson Innovations, Hong Kong
Jury statement: “From an aesthetic viewpoint, the Philips Linea Cordless Phone stands out clearly from conventional telephones and gains additional merit due to its well-considered user-friendly details.”