Every year that I attend CES in Las Vegas I reach a point of sensory overload. It’s not just from all the people, lights, noise, and smells, but an overload of product strategies and emerging trends for the coming year.
With everything from R2D2 showing up outside the convention center, to meeting celebrities on the showroom floor, or coming face-to-face with a Paul Bunyan-sized electronic game-playing running shoe by Sketchers, or walking into a booth full of the coolest Chinese technologies ever made but not being able to talk to anyone because they don’t speak English, it’s not possible to describe all the sensations a person will experience at an event like this.
Everyone will experience CES in their own unique way, and the impressions they walk away with will help define their understanding of the world to come. Big time decisions are being made by the impressions made here.
As events go, it’s one of the largest in the world, attracting a record 170,000 people, including 45,000 from other countries. Out of 3,600 exhibitors, 375 of them were startups, with special attention being paid to them in an exhibit area called Eureka Park.
In so many ways, CES sets the tone for the global economy, with tens of thousands of private meetings being conducted in the background forcing more deals to be cut in a shorter period of time than virtually any other event on the planet.
Walking across the exhibit floors is quite a mind-expanding experience. Since I tend to use a radically different set of lenses to experience this show, I walked away with some rather unusual perspectives.
For this reason I’d like to mention twelve of the trends that everyone seemed to have missed at CES.