It’s the crazy first week of January again and in just a few days thousands of people will jump out of their casino hotel beds and squeeze themselves in crowded shuttle buses, will snatch someone else’s taxi away or jump on the monorail regardless of others. You get what we’re talking about, Vegas Baby!
In the Las Vegas Convention Center (LVCC) at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2016 high-tech companies will showcase their latest innovations and ideas as well as indicate trends for the technology of tomorrow. However the CES is often misunderstood – some even say it has lost some glamour and importance.
New logo of CES 2016
There might be some reasons, including the absence of important tech companies like Apple who prefer to introduce their products in own shows and the arguments of some people claiming CES is becoming a car show or a kitchen exhibition.
All true. But all bad news? No! First of all CES is about trends in technology and you really don’t need Apple to figure out what’s next as even we can predict that they will probably show a new iPhone, iPad, MacBook and maybe iPod later this year.
Secondly, the presence of more and more car makers, kitchen appliance manufacturers and other industries is a perfect reflection of the trend we all see: the IoT.
Let’s take a look at what we can expect from this year’s CES and how to get the most out of it even without attending the show.
The predicted trends for this year are probably less about inventing a completely new category of devices but more about the improvement of existing ones. We can expect to see highly integrated smart home solutions which will hopefully speak the same language in order to give consumers the possibility to build a flexible and personal experience.
Samsung reveals its entire 2016 Smart TV line-up will be IoT ready (image: Samsung)
We will most likely be overwhelmed by a flood of new wearables from entry level fitness trackers which will be all about the price to state-of-the art smartwatches offering as much functionality as possible. In addition sensors in everything from headphones to necklaces will make for some exciting little gadgets.
For a deeper dive into the trends of the stuff that’s already been revealed checkout the blog from the Verge here to read about drones, TVs, headphones and virtual reality or scroll down to watch the CES 30 second press pitch videos.
Let’s look at some other CES 2016 characteristics to make some assumptions on the future of technology. First of all there are the automotive segment exhibitors. While there is one of the most important events for car makers just one week after CES, the Detroit Auto Show (NAIAS), there will still be many car manufacturers taking the double effort and being present on both events.
The Chevy Bolt was introduced last year at the NAIAS – will we see the production version of the competitive priced 200 mile-range EV at CES 2016? (image: Chevrolet)
With more and more electronic applications and very complex innovations such as autonomous driving, head-up displays (HUD) offering augmented reality and touch-less in-car user interfaces car makers need to solve similar challenges as traditional electronics companies, make connections in the electronic industries and recruit engineers from disciplines they did not need before. What better place to do so than CES could be there?
Another factor might be the trend of engine down-sizing, higher efficiency and small, city-friendly vehicles. All things necessary to compete in our modern world but not really appealing to traditional petrol heads. So how to distinguish a BMW from a Toyota if not through a straight six-cylinder engine? Maybe through sophisticated and fun applications like AirTouch (see cover image “BMW: Vision Car Interior and User-Interface of the future”).
Will be presented at CES: the Rinspeed Σtos blurs the lines between car and electronic device – BMW i8 based prototype of an autonomous driving car, equipped with UHD TVs, several cameras monitoring the car’s surroundings and an own drone taking pictures and picking up parcels (image: Rinspeed)
Keynotes of this year’s CES include speeches from the CEOs of IBM and Intel; not too surprising as they dominated the hardware and software markets for years now. However there are two remarkable speakers, Reed Hastings, CEO of Netflix and Robert Kyncl, Chief Business Officer of YouTube. Why is it worth mentioning them? Because it shows that streaming services are grown up and that cloud services are an important part of modern consumer electronics.
Highlight on the opening day: Watch the keynote of Netflix CEO Reed Hasting live on Netflix, January 6, 18:00 CET (images: Netflix)
With the CEOs of Volkswagen and General Motors it becomes also clear that while we will be waiting another decade for electrical vehicles to really arrive in our garages, the digitalisation of the car has long begun.
We do know that you want to stay on top of what CES 2016 offers – you can do so by using our dedicated CES 2016 Live Wall. Further look through the videos below to learn what’s worth keeping an eye on during the show.
We will follow up on CES 2016 with trends for semiconductors beyond the mainstream ones like VR and UHD TVs after the show. So long enjoy the avalanche of news, wild predictions and happenings from the craziest show there is.
CES 2016 30 Second Press Pitch Videos – Startups
#CES2016 Live on Twitter
cover image: BMW Group @ CES 2016, Vision Car Interior and User-Interface of the future (01/16)