Wednesday, 13 January 2016

CES 2016

CES was just like last year drones, virtual reality and fitness wearables the only difference was the competition seemed to be twice as fierce. Apple and Microsoft famously don't exhibit at CES but Chinese companies are increasing their presence. Chinese exhibitors took up over 1/3 of the floor space up from 1/4 last year. It's tough for businesses but great for consumers.

My new home theatre
Samsung had one of the largest and most well attended booths. They manufacture so many items that Samsung will be one of the leaders in the internet of things. Smartphones, TVs and internet enabled fridges they do it all. Their internet enabled fridge was a hit with three internal cameras you can access images anytime with your smartphone we can finally see who ate that last bit of chocolate. You can also order groceries direct. They also had some very cool wearables including a smart suit (NFC tag) that unlocks your phone when you take it out of your pocket. Thankfully as we are in Vegas Samsung's Wellness belt came in handy automatically expanding your belt after a big meal.

LG showed off a bendable TV screen. It's not commercial yet but in the future you will be able to take a TV with you and roll it up like a newspaper. Oculus Rift finally announced their Virtual reality pricing at $599 (sold at cost) but you will also need to shell out a total of US$1,499 for the PC bundle which can power 3D visuals.

These are the drones you are looking for
Drones were taken to the next level by EHang where the drone can actually carry you inside. All you need to do is sit there and enter the destination in the app. It seems a little scary to me as the cockpit is empty apart from a smartphone stand. Parrot also released a drone with live streaming first person view. They always put on a good synchronised show.

The future of TV viewing
We also got to witness the birth of a global network with Netflix launching in 130 countries nearly every country bar China. Last quarter Netflix users watched 12 bn hours up from 8.25 bn a year ago. Since Netflix launched in Oz BitTorrent usage dropped 15%. Youtube also presented and for the second year in row the most popular entertainers amongst American high schoolers weren't actors or music celebrities they were Youtube stars.

How to make your booth stand out
With 2.47 million net square feet of exhibitors up from 2.2 mn last year it was hard to stand out. GoPro knew the secret to a popular booth serve free beer! Nick Woodman the founder got the crowd chanting GoPro handing out samples of his products unfortunately it hasn't helped the stock. Anything to do with Star Wars was also popular with the force enabled BB8 droid drawing a crowd.  It was great to see Uber and Lyft finally operating at the show. Looking forward to next year.

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