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CNN10 2021-11-16

CNN 10

U.S. State With The Highest Gas Prices; City With The Highest Inflation Rate; Gym That Digitally Enhances Its Workouts. Aired 4-4:10a ET

Aired November 16, 2021 - 04:00:00 ET


CARL AZUZ, CNN 10 ANCHOR: New records are often newsworthy topics, but not all of them have the kind we want to set. That's where we start today's show. I'm Carl Azuz, welcome to CNN 10. Gasoline at nearly $5 per gallon, that's what average prices are in northern California's Humboldt County.

Thankfully for Californians, it's not quite that high everywhere.

The average price across the Golden State is $4.68 per gallon, but that is a record. California, which has the largest population of any American state also has the highest gas prices in the country. A spokesman for the AAA Automobile Association says even though Californians are used to paying more for gas, this is a leap for them.

Drivers of mid-sized sedans are paying over $21 more every time they fill their tanks than they paid last year when demand for gas and the cost of it were far lower. In addition to that demand, there've been powerful rainstorms in northern California that have reduced the state's ability to refine the fuel. That's why it's setting record prices there but not nationwide.

The U.S. national average is $3.41 per gallon, the increased cost of crude oil which is the biggest factor in the cost of gas continues to drive prices up, and that is happening a week ahead of Thanksgiving when the most popular form of travel is by car according to AAA. So especially for drivers in California, it's going to be a more expensive holiday.

Gas prices are just part of that picture. We reported a couple weeks ago how groceries for next week's festivities are expected to be the most expensive ever. Ongoing problems with the supply chain and abnormally high inflation, the rise in prices of goods and services, these are two of the big reasons why.

It's having a negative impact on consumer sentiment, the way people feel about the U.S. economy and their own personal finances. And to give you a sense of how all this is reverberating across the United States, the city with the highest inflation rate is thousands of miles away from the state with the highest gas prices.


NADIA ROMERO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It's Atlanta that has the overall highest inflation rate in the country. The southern city has that inflation rate due to big factors like housing, gas prices and the cost of groceries as well. It's inflation rate 7.9 percent compared to the national average at 6.2 percent. Census data shows that Georgia has become one of the top places to move in recent years.

The demand for housing in the Atlanta Metro area is outpacing supply, resulting in higher rents and home prices. Now beyond Atlanta, metro areas nationwide are seeing spiking costs for basic items like gas, food and furniture when compared to last year according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Economists have also linked the surge in pricing to bottlenecks from the supply chain. The result of the collision between pent up consumer demand and a lack of resources. Now with all the rising costs, whether it be gas prices, groceries, housing, it's no surprise that new data coming out of the University of Michigan shows that consumer sentiment is at a 10-year low. Nadia Romero, CNN, Atlanta.


AZUZ: 10 Second Trivia. Cardboard, Gear, Valve, and Vive are all the names of what? Smartwatches, VR headsets, EV prototypes or cryptocurrencies.

These are all virtual reality headsets ranging in price from $20 to $800.

New digital technology is changing the way people perceive sports that have been strictly analog for centuries. This is being done with the aid of virtual reality, sights and sounds that are completely computer generated, and augmented reality overlays of computer images on actual physical environments.

It's not for everyone. For one thing, there's something called cyber sickness, which is like motion sickness. Experts say that when you perceive movement on a screen or a VR headset, but your body isn't actually moving. The confusion this creates in the brain can make you feel disoriented and sick. Some health experts are also concerned about the excessive amount of screen time that many people already get.

Do electronic images need to be added even at the gym where many go to unplug in the first place? For supporters of the new technology, it can add excitement and opportunity for a new type of workout. But a membership at $200 per month at Black Box PR costs several times that of other gyms.


KRISTIE LU STOUT, CNN CORRESPONDENT: I'm at Ski Tech, an indoor training center for winter sports in Hong Kong, trying out this ski simulator.

Sensors track my motion. Software recreates snow conditions and the panoramic screen transports me to snowy mountains.

There's no snow in Hong Kong, but thanks to virtual reality I can hit the slopes and fine tune my skiing technique, and for some entrepreneurs virtual and augmented realities define the next generation of fitness and sports. San Francisco's Market Street, home of streetcars, and tweets and now a virtual reality gym, at Black Box VR. Opened in 2019, your body transforms into a controller and real world exercises are flashy attacks in the virtual battleground.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Woo. All right. I feel like I'm blowing up.

PRESTON LEWIS, CO-FOUNDER OF BLACK BOX VR: Black Box VR is the world's first, resistance based virtual reality gym.

STOUT: Now, walk me through the Black Box VR experience. You go to a Black Box VR center. You walk into a private booth. You put on the VR headset and then what happens?

LEWIS: So, you -- you go in like you said. You put that headset on, and you are emersed in this vast of epic, futuristic sporting arena, and the crowd's cheering for you and chanting for you. You actually have a -- what we call a dynamic resistance machine, that is massed to the virtually reality space.

You start to do chest press, shoulder press, back row, all these different compound fitness movements, and as you're doing those movements you're actually shooting a fire beam or an ice shard and creating these epic attacks against your opponent.

STOUT: For Preston Lewis, co-founder of Black Box VR, fitness is all fun and games. He says the gamification aspects of the experience are designed to make people addicted to their workouts.


STOUT: Let's talk more about VR, because you said that virtual reality's a great way to trick people into committing to a fitness routine. What do you mean by that?

LEWIS: Absolutely. Yes, and most people have a super hard time sticking to their fitness routine. With virtual reality, it's the exact opposite. Video games have been created some of the world's best behavioral psychologists and they just have it down. They have this perfect little timing, the perfect little dopamine drips, (inaudible) achievement or award.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's really hard to stop moving once the game gets going. So the mix of technology, the game itself, everything intertwines, keeping you moving and it's keeping you from getting distracted from the workout itself.

STOUT: At Black Box, members workout in their own private room where's the resistance machine that pairs the VR headset. Lewis says that for users working out in the world of Black Box, 30 minutes feel like 10. When you're working out in the game, do you feel the passage of time?

LEWIS: You know, and that -- that's one of the great things about virtual reality as well is time dilation. When you're on a treadmill, you're --you're sitting there, you're -- you're time walking or you're running and jogging and you look at, you're like OK, it's been a half hour, and then you look at the clock and it's been like five seconds.

You know, and so, it's the opposite with VR. I'm very tech forward and I think applying virtual reality game (inaudible) workouts. Super awesome concept, ready player one. (Inaudible) really wanted to try it out.

STOUT: Black Box is currently only available in gyms across the U.S., but Lewis says the company is hoping to expand internationally.


AZUZ: For 10 out of 10 we're getting pumped up. These balloons were recently tested ahead of next week's Thanksgiving Parade in New York City.

Hundreds of volunteers took part to make sure the bags hold air, to see how they handle if the wind kicks up and it's a testing ground for the handlers themselves as managing these things does take some technique. Several new balloons from Ronald McDonald to Baby Yoda to Pikachu are set to be part of the fun.

Well, that ties up another addition of our show, we're "tethered" to that 10 minute limit. It really can't "rope" anymore time than that. And plus an extra minute of puns would be, kind of, "ballooney" if you get my "drift". But before we "float" away, we would like to give some air time to Ludington High School.

It is located in Ludington, Michigan. Thank you for subscribing and leaving a comment on our You Tube channel. I'm Carl Azuz and I'm going "up, up and away" with CNN.