In the last few years, the CES (Consumer Electronics Show) has annually attracted more than 170,000 attendees from 150+ countries – all hoping for a peak behind the curtain at the latest innovation in consumer technology. This year, the Prophet team was on-site to observe the latest digital trends, the evolution of the “Internet of Things,” get a glimpse into how virtual and augmented reality will transform customer experience, and to identify the gaps – where innovation is falling short.
See the three innovations that stood out to us at CES:
A Connected Life
The number of everyday devices, spaces and objects that can be controlled continues to explode (somewhat literally) and there’s clearly a big fight for who is going to win the home-ecosystem war.
Edyn is in the business of smart gardens. Using internal sensors, Edyn monitors your garden’s moisture levels, light exposure, soil-nutrition, etc. and compares it in real-time to plant databases, soil science, and local weather conditions. It then waters for you, and offers tailored suggestions.
Petcube allows pet owners to instantly monitor and play with their pets, no matter where they are.
While many companies are focused on making smart devices, iDevices stood out in their decentralization strategy, choosing to focus on designing smart switches rather than focusing on the product itself. Now you can control any device virtually.
A smart toothbrush makes brushing a playful affair; it visually tracks missed areas and transforms the brushing experience into an interactive game. This also allows parents to track their children’s teeth brushing patterns and give dentists real-time updates.
Building smart sensors unlocks a universe of new opportunities for interaction. For example, FootMoov is now designing shoes for DJs to control their music through dance rather than using their fingers. And their shoes are good-looking.
Samsung is actually designing smart clothing that allow you to communicate with your smart devices. A cufflink can monitor heart rates, body fat levels and trigger event modes in smart phones that facilitate life’s activities – from “work” mode to “golf” or “sleep” mode.
Swarovski is designing their own glam versions of activity bands.
Hydrao has created a smart shower head that is water conscious. Using colored lights, it indicates how much time you have left in your shower, relative to your water consumption goals.
Companies are designing standardization platforms to manage these IoT devices by building alliances and encouraging companies to build onto their application libraries.
- Apple HomeKit: http://www.apple.com/ios/homekit/?cid=wwa-us-kwg-features
- Zigbee http://www.zigbee.org
- LG has branded their offering Smart ThinQ – a voice command and control center: https://us.smartthinq.com/main/index.dev
- Lowe’s Iris connected home brand: https://www.irisbylowes.com
Developments in haptic design have lead manufacturers to transform our phones into haptic devices that give a new dimension to experiences. The Nidec Copal Corporation showcased smart phones that vibrated based with video content in your hand. Companies are also starting to master eye tracking to the point that we gaming can now be played simply with a glance.
Drones are everywhere. They’re becoming smarter, faster, less expensive and more relevant to our lives.
Curved screens everywhere. Curved, kinetic screens at Samsung. Curved screens are on fridges to give you live traffic update on your route to work, a new recipe, and what is running low in your kitchen. This is pretty cool:
Projected in kitchens: to coach you through cooking and guide you through the details of a recipe.3D Scanning
Intel showed us how far 3D scanning has come, where simple software and a tablet can create a 3D model of anyone. In other applications, a mirror can scan you to provide a full assessment of your body, including making recommendations about exercise, and tracking your body transformations over time.
A screen can now be anything at all, as Intel demonstrates how a game engages in physical space. Here the graphics map in real-time over the topology of the landscape, and invite players to dig into the sand to uncover hidden objects.
Play at Work
New intel technology allows professionals in complex working environments to make the invisible visible, and the relevant appear contextually. For example, here an electrical engineer can evaluate the state of a machine using augmented reality goggles that layer relevant information right onto the machinery.
Panasonic has made some incredible strides in image mapping with their latest prototypes in skin-assessment and makeup applications that feels truly seamless and integrated.
Read more from our team about their experiences at CES:
- CES Report: Virtual and Augmented Reality are the Future of Customer Experience, by Omar Akhtar
- IoT Moves From Smart to Wicked Intelligent at CES, by Scott Davis
- 25 Disruptive Technology Trends for 2015-2016, by Brian Solis