CES 2019: the 7 big tech trends in Las Vegas
“Are you ready for CES ?”says Steve Koenig, Vice President of Research for the Consumer Technology Association (CTA), the association that organizes the event. The scene takes place in one of the large conference rooms of the Mandalay Bay in front of several hundred journalists from all over the world, most of them still under the effect of jet lag. They are here to attend the famous CES (Consumer Electronic Show), the global mass of consumer technologies.
The 2019 edition, which officially opens this Tuesday, January 8, 2019, began Sunday evening with a kind of mouth-watering presentation of the major trends of the moment. Koenig says we are in a transition period between the decade-long connected era of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat, and the era of ubiquitous data that is expected to mark the next few years : “Online privacy will become a critical global talking point. After vaguely heating the room, Steve Koenig gave way to two members of his team Lesley Rohrbaugh, Director of Market Studies and Ken Arnold, director of Trends and innovations. According to these two experts, here are some of the main trends that await us for 2019…
5G, always faster
5G, the fifth generation of telecommunications standards, logically follows the current 4G. It promises much higher speeds (up to 100 times faster). It will connect more and more objects to exchange between them. Most industrialized countries including France, the United States, Japan, South Korea, China, the United Kingdom… have already started testing or will test in 2019 the first 5G networks. For Ken Arnold, the economic impact will be considerable.
Home becomes smart
Another sector in full boom, that of the smart home which sees the development of many devices connected via platforms such as Google Home or Amazon Alexa that allow to control the temperature of rooms, turn on a TV program, check who rings the door or put the house under surveillance thanks to the installation of cameras more and more efficient. One of the challenges to come according to Ken Arnold is to manage to communicate with each other all these technologies coming from many manufacturers and linked to competing platforms:” The smart home is a symphony of connected objects that must work together and not each on their side”, insists the specialist. Another big trend for our future homes, these connected objects benefit from the massive deployment of artificial intelligence (AI). For example, surveillance cameras are able to identify who rings the doorbell : is it a friend, a delivery man… ? Is the person in the garden a family member or a potential thief ? In the latter case, she will be able to follow him, or even zoom in on his face.
Voice, new interface
Many applications especially on smartphone are already controlled by voice thanks to digital assistants such as Siri on iPhone or Google on Android. But according to CTA experts, natural language will become the main interface connecting us to objects. This is already the case in some smart home applications especially through the Google Home and Amazon Alexa platforms. The latter, for example, has 60,000 “skills” (including one dedicated to Science and the Future), that is to say voice commands that trigger an action : “Alexa turns on the living room”, ” Alexa what are the info ?”, “Alexa gives me a pancake recipe.”…and is compatible with more than 20,000 devices. But other areas such as the automobile will not escape the controls of the voice either.
The 8K, overdose of pixels
After the fever of 4K (or Ultra high definition UHD for TV), here is that of 8K for ever more pixels. These technologies are notably pushed by the two major Korean manufacturers Samsung and LG. TV screens should therefore increase from 3840 x 2160 pixels (UHD) to 7680 x 4320 pixels (8K). Not necessarily useful at the moment because there are no programs recorded in 8K yet.
Virtual and augmented reality
Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) are still in the spotlight at CES 2019, including the arrival of new applications and products. For example, with the Teslasuit, a special suit for the video game, equipped with haptic feedback to physically feel the game (a shot in the stomach), capture the movement of the player, vary the temperature. Another new application, the Bose AR augmented audio glasses. Understand, from augmented reality applied to audio. The great American specialist launches this year, a pair of sunglasses that gives audio information about the objects that the person is looking at : for example a restaurant, a monument…
Autonomous car goes to delivery
Automotive has become one of the most represented industries at CES. At issue is the development of the autonomous car and the accompanying on-board entertainment technologies. Autonomous taxi experiences are expected to multiply. But other new services appear such as home shopping delivery. Thus, the Californian company AutoX has planned to make a demonstration at CES. As for Doordash, an American delivery company, it plans to launch as early as March 2019, an autonomous car delivery experiment in partnership with General Motors.
Health goes digital
Last big trend of CES, health. Digital technology invades all areas of the sector : from aid to diagnosis, through pain control, the monitoring of certain diseases (diabetes, cardiovascular diseases…), sleep aid or the measurement of biological constants. In the latter field, the Omron watch presented at CES is an emblematic example. It is indeed the first to be able to measure in a few seconds the blood pressure of the person thanks to a sensor placed in the bracelet.