CES 2019, LAS VEGAS, NEVADA. The phrase “What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas” may apply to many things, but certainly not the science, industrial design and over the top presentation value of the world’s largest consumer technology show. CES 2019, the most recent episode of the long running and world renown Consumer Electronics Show did not disappoint, and Axiros was present to meet with technology partners and yes, to participate in the tech-crazy spectacle.
Visiting the show floor can be both inspirational and overwhelming. This year, the show floor expanded beyond the boundaries of the convention center. There were pavilions hosted at nearby hotels, as well as at the parking lots and public streets adjacent to the convention center. According to show organizers 2019 CES displays occupied 2.9 million square feet. One of the most memorable structures was the Google Experience, a four-story structure next to the main registration area. The Google Experience structure contained multiple conference rooms, demo areas, and a Disney themed ride showcasing the capabilities of the Google assistant under different scenarios.
The magnitude of the technology on display is evident from the number of companies unveiling new products. CES 2019 featured over 4,500 vendors showcasing their products to 188,000 attendees, including 1,200 start-ups, according to the Consumer Technology Association. With so many displays and it was difficult to see it all. Because of the record turnout exhibits were placed in nonlinear patterns, making it difficult at times not only to navigate, but also giving the impression of being lost in a haphazardly planned technology city. True to expectations, each exhibitor endeavored to draw visitors with attention grabbing aural and visual prompts. Samsung, for instance, occupied an entire basketball court sized room covered from floor to ceiling with flexible screens emulating ocean waves. From helicopters, to microsensors, everything was on display. Drones, driverless vehicles, robots, wearables, mobile devices and the latest screen technology. In a connected world Axiros was relevant and timely; while many of the strictly consumer-oriented products deploy with closed systems, others gain relevance and utility with centralized management and analysis capabilities.
Industrial IoT exhibits showcased the possibilities of IoT in the areas of asset tracking, agriculture and health care. Within these market segments, however, many participants approached universal opportunities from different angles, utilizing different technology. In this way CES 2019 provided an interesting study in contrasts.
T-Mobile, for instance, unveiled their narrowband IoT (NB Io) network approach to connected populations while others showcased multi-network SIM cards and custom sensors for a wide variety of applications. Some might argue that “smart” was the most often promoted attribute of goods on display in Las Vegas, indicating a temporary IQ peak during the expo. During CES 2019 almost everything was smart, including homes, cities, vehicles and devices. “Smart assistant” compatibility, indeed, was another common theme among hardware vendors whose devices interoperate with Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa, Microsoft Cortana, and Apple Siri.
Never one to disappoint, Apple’s Siri made a splash previewing their recently released home automation platform, available with their latest version of the Apple OS. The creation of voice activated scenes (triggered workflows) amazed the audience as the vendors showcased multiple voice-activated home automation sequences. Just as ‘smart’ was a familiar refrain throughout the show, voice recognition was certainty part of the choral medley, suggesting that it is not acceptable for ‘things’ to be smart, they must also respond to verbal commands.
One can only imagine what CES 2020 might hold. As Axiros technology continues to quietly influence the evolution of the connected world one might expect the future looks bright. For intelligent devices.