Thursday, November 12, 2015

CES UNVEILED NYC/2015 Highlights Part One


The annual CES UNVEILED NYC event is a pep rally, of sorts for the upcoming, mind boggling CES 2016 that will take place in Las Vegas. Yup-that 2.3+million sq. feet of displays for the 175.000+ or so folks ready to descend on Sin City...needs an is that big. And open to the public-hence the "C" for consumer.

TIMELY- this tech 'trade' organization itself -went through a re-brand-and is more broadly called the Consumer Technology Association. We were surprised not by THAT-but that the name was still trade-marketable available...!

Some Highlights:

The media press conference included remarks by several CEA now CTA leads on the upcoming holiday market spends...less LED tvs -but still popular-the huge(r-60inch+) 4K Ultra HDTV versions (yes, please), more personable wearable gifts-like-smartphones+tablets...along with audio (Bluetooth speakers, for example), video game systems and imaging devices like action cameras- still coveted. And more so than before-automotive add-ons (GPS devices) and emerging tech -like drones...are getting the Santa treatment-but to lesser a degree.

Where the digitally world, is headed generally speaking...was also a topic...with the talk given by a very erudite Shawn DuBravac, Phd and author of best-selling book Digital Destiny...highlighting the global trends.

Having attended CES 2015...where we saw a lot of gee whiz tech-but also what's the point gadgets ---(check eBay for all the re-sales on personal fitness trackers-proof-we are not the only ones...) the observation that CES offerings are evolving from what technology can do -to actual how can it benefit consumers...imo-sets up for an even more amazing show...centered around what Dubravac coined 1) "ambient sensing"-like IoT baby monitors worn by little ones for their Blackhawk parents...or Life Alert like devices for the elderly, 2)"predictive customization"-cumulative learning systems-like Google's self drive cars-based on aggregated data-and akin to  the "suggested for you" boxes that crop up on internet sites (though we feel we should be paid for that data when collected without an opt out feature- and imo- privacy concerns on data collecting-particularly in the EU might limit that)...3)"building out ecosystems"including Virtual Reality and 3D printing-changing the end user experience, and the 4) "intermingling" of physical and virtual identities-what changes and opportunities can be created....and how that might impact fitness trackers and we think other immersive entertainment content that might impact behavior...that no doubt, will def. keep us glued to some screen longer.

Most fun...of course...were the exhibitors downstairs...including many CES Innovation Awards' winners for 2016...broadly grouped into categories: automative, gaming and virtual reality, startups, entertainment and content, health and wellness, 3D systems, unmanned systems, and Internet of Things.