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Gamereactor's Hardware Awards 2019: Most Innovative Hardware

We celebrate the companies that pushed the boundaries of how we interact with consumer electronics in 2019.

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Innovation doesn't always lead to the best review scores here on Gamereactor, nor is it a sure-fire tactic to get consumers to purchase a product - on the contrary. Often, innovation can actually lead to diminishing returns if the way we interact with electronics is fundamentally changed. Apart from this, it may also introduce us to problems that we didn't know existed.

However, there are a few manufacturers that have managed to push the limits of design, both individually and for the market in general. Below, you'll find the pieces of consumer electronics that we believe have successfully pushed the envelope in 2019.

Samsung Galaxy Fold

We believe that the Fold plays two crucial roles. Not only is it a great phone that offers great multitasking solutions and a wonderful multimedia experience unlike any of its competitors it also elevates the market towards a whole new way of interacting with one's phone and, in a sense, but it's also a huge threat to the tablet market as well.

We still use the Fold on a daily basis and it has also become one of our favourites. However, we give the device a place in this particular category simply because we believe that its crucial trump card is ultimately its innovative design, which has made us perceive the market and its possibilities differently.

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Sonos Move

Sonos has gradually constructed a functional ecosystem that people are familiar with (and tend to either love or hate). This is precisely why the manufacturer chose to launch a speaker that offered the duality to exist both within and outside of that ecosystem.

The rumours regarding Sonos working on such a device had been around for years and when the product was finally revealed, it was clear that the manufacturer's innovation happened as it took a half-step into the unknown. The idea was that the Move would give consumers new functionality without compromising existing solutions. The result is probably the most satisfying audio solution of this year.

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Zenbook Pro Duo

An extra display integrated into a keyboard? It sounded strange not only when we first heard about it but even when we first saw the machine after unpacking it at the office.

First impressions aside, the extra screen actually turned out to be quite practical for everyday use, however, this machine is not exactly gaming-oriented and is more intended to be used as a workstation. The Pro Duo comes with a 4K OLED touch screen with high colour accuracy, making for hardware that may not define the market moving forward, but at least gives us a solid idea of how content creator will work in the future.

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Oculus Quest

The Oculus Quest is a nice piece of tech. Yes, it would do well with more storage and better battery life, but the joy of just taking out your VR headset and the two controllers and getting started right away is almost indescribable when you're used to setting cameras up and tripping over wires mid-session.

And when, like us, you try to pique the VR interest of your friends, it's amazing when they realise how easy the Quest is to take on the go. There are headsets with bigger game selections, better tracking and better graphics, but the Quest has something that none of its competitors has and that alone justifies its existence.

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