CES, aka the Consumer Electronic Show, is the world’s largest and most influential consumer technology trade show known to set the agenda for the year to come. Like any in-person show or event, the COVID pandemic impacted the attendance and logistics of recent years. But this year the event was back in full swing, ready to connect the biggest brands and sharpest innovators once again. The event certainly made a splash, with a 70% larger footprint than 2022, hosting more than 3,200 exhibitors and over 115,000 attendees between January 5th and January 8th. Attendees, speakers, brands, and observers all felt the anticipation of discovering what new innovations may be unveiled. As the tech industry continues to evolve, we see some trends sticking around and some emerging with each new year. Here are five of the most notable trends from CES 2023:
- Sustainability: One of the key trends at CES the past few years has been sustainability in tech. As global brands continue to make sustainability a priority, many expected to see sustainable elements within this year’s exhibitions. But in 2023 the sustainability theme came stronger than ever. From a John Deere robot planter that is designed to reduce chemical use and Bosch’s next generation of MEMS sensors that are more power-efficient than their predecessors and will reduce the environmental footprint of smart technology, to electric speedboats and avocado scanners that can assess ripeness, the list goes on. While sustainability has been a touchpoint at CES for years, the prevalence at this year’s conference indicates that companies are taking the issue more seriously and that consumers are starting to take more interest.
- Growth in Streaming: 2022 was a transformative year for streaming services, between Netflix and Disney+ launching ad-supported tiers and Thursday Night Football’s move to Prime Video. As consumers continue to shift their attention to streaming, CES attendees are following suit. Leading the charge, Roku is planning to bulk up its streaming service that originally launched in 2017 (yes, Roku has a streaming service), as well as introduce two new lines on Smart TVs: Roku Select and Roku Plus. But while traditional streaming will continue to innovate to maintain viewership, we’re starting to see streaming enter the conversation in some unexpected ways. From streaming inside autonomous vehicles to Delta’s plans to launch free streaming on flights, the possibilities are endless.
- Cars and Tech… Tech and Cars: Speaking of cars, with each year, CES has increasingly turned into an auto show. Now more than ever top automakers are vying to prove that they are innovating as quickly as any other tech company. This year, we also saw a number of consumer electronics companies trying their hand in the auto space. Samsung pitched their new ICX technology, which prioritizes driver safety with Ready Care by responding to changes in the driver’s condition, such as drowsiness and distraction. Meanwhile, competitor LG showcased their Cockpit Computer, also focusing on improvements to the driving experience, stressing that cars should be both a living and a working space. In another notable partnership, Sony and Honda teamed up on the Afeela electric vehicle, which is a prototype focusing on the 3 A’s: autonomy, augmentation, and affinity. With each year, we will see the lines between tech and auto companies continue to blur.
- A Practical Metaverse: This year, the metaverse took a bit of a back seat compared to previous years. Although there were fewer metaverse-focused booths, overall, those focusing their efforts on VR seemed to take a step back to the more practical. After all, you have to walk before you can run. OVR Technology introduced another iteration of their scent-focused VR experience, which can be used for anything from marketing a fragrance to immersing yourself in a virtual spa experience. Boston-based Xander brings another practical use to the table: smart glasses that show real-time captions of what other people are saying for those who are hearing-impaired. As the interest in the metaverse continues to decline, it will be interesting to see if more practical applications will bring renewed interest.
- Inclusivity in Beauty: While beauty products and technology may not seem to go together, beauty and skin care brands joined the ranks at CES again this year alongside autonomous vehicles and avocado scanners. Companies like L’Oréal have specifically been focusing on inclusivity, unveiling a motorized lipstick applicator called HAPTA that will allow users with limited fine motor skills to apply lipstick with confidence. Korean-based Amorepacific was the CES Innovation Award winner for the fourth year in a row for two products which focus on hyper-personalization. Their Authentic Color Master by TONEWORK uses an algorithm that analyzes 3,448 areas of the face and recommends an ideal makeup color. Slightly more approachable, the COSMECHIP can be used from the comfort of your home, and allows you to create skincare products on the spot to fit your needs. Both of Amorepacific’s products indicate that the beauty industry is moving away from a one-size-fits-all mentality and instead prioritizing individuality and inclusivity.
So what can we take away from CES 2023? Well, technology is certainly trending and shows no sign of slowing down. New industries are constantly joining the tech sphere by enhancing existing products with new features. Hot topics from previous years will continue to command attention, only with active efforts to shift from promises to practice in the coming year. In 2023 the world will continue to be wowed by manufacturers, developers, content, technology delivery systems, and more. Here at Bluetext we are excited to watch emerging technologies yet to come this year, and how the world’s business leaders and pioneering thinkers continue to address the industry’s most relevant issues.