CES 2023: electric vehicles, metaverse, NFT; the technologies that make the show

The new West Hall at CES, dedicated to the car, mirrors the redesign of the rest of the Las Vegas Convention Center. Image: CTA.

The Consumer Electronics Show is fast approaching (January 5-8). And again, it will be a hybrid event taking place simultaneously in Las Vegas and in a virtual meeting room embedded in your Internet browser.

Back in Las Vegas

According to the Consumer Technology Association, which sponsors the decades-old show, the expansion of the physical Las Vegas site for the 2023 show is a testament to the enthusiasm for in-person interactions, despite the ongoing distancing at this industry event.

According to the association, the goal for CES is to exceed 100,000 participants. They come from 173 countries, territories and regions, and more than 4,700 journalists have been accredited.

“I think people are excited about CES, they’re excited to reconnect, they’re excited to really come together,” said John T. Kelley, vice president of CES, during an interview with ZDNet in New York.

“We’re keeping the remote component, but the in-person component is more important this year,” added Kinsey Fabrizio, senior vice president of CES sales, at the same meeting. For example, the total exhibition area this time is 70% larger than the previous one.

Exhibitors who were unable to attend the last show are back in 2023 with more than 3,100 exhibitors, says Kinsey Fabrizio, who indicates that about 1,000 of them are exhibiting for the first time. “They are taking meeting rooms in addition to their showrooms, which indicates that they want to do business.”

“We also saw a record number of entries for our innovation award programme. »

Key topics and technologies to follow

Electric vehicles and autonomous vehicles

Among the key themes of CES 2023 are cars and mobility technologies, argues Kinsey Fabrizio.

Volvo S60 EV |  best electric car

Image: Volvo.

These categories were moved to the brand new West Hall (located across Paradise Road from the current Las Vegas Convention Center).

CES also uses the central and north halls, while the south hall was razed as part of a renovation.

Central Hall is connected to West Hall by the underground tunnel created by Elon Musk’s The Boring Company, which transports passengers in Teslas. The tunnel stations extend past West Hall to the Resorts World hotel across from the Wynn on South Las Vegas Boulevard next to Circus Circus.

“You’ll find a lot of self-driving technology” in West Hall as well as electric vehicles, Kinsey Fabrizio says, including Light Year, maker of a solar-powered electric vehicle. John Deere and Caterpillar will also be present, with the latter likely to present an autonomous tractor.

In addition to cars, nautical technologies will be very present, especially electric yachts, points out Kinsey Fabrizio, with brands like Volvo and all kinds of marine technologies.

Connected health

Another main theme is connected health technologies, located in the Nordhallen as last time. Areas of digital health include sleep technology, digital therapy, mental health and new diagnostic technologies.

Due to new regulations in the US, visitors to the show will be able to see and test many hearing aids. It is now possible in the US to buy them without a prescription.

The digital health category also presents innovations in the form of the “emergency service of the future” for the hospital world.

According to Kinsey Fabrizio, the emergency room of the future will have devices and services that incorporate “telehealth as well as a lot of remote monitoring of the patient” to reduce crowding in emergency rooms. hospitals and “so people can be sorted differently” .

Artificial intelligence, robotics and the metaverse

Technologies for professionals, including artificial intelligence, robotics and the Internet of Things, will share the Nordhallen with digital health.

The Venetian Hotel is once again home to many exhibitors in the former Sands Convention Center. Including – for the second year in a row – the exhibition on technologies for the food sector, smart homes and the very broad category of accessories for digital products.

Eureka Park, the technology start-up hub, will also be present at Sands. This year, more than a thousand start-ups from more than 20 countries will showcase their products in Eureka Park. Note that Ukraine Tech will also have a pavilion.

The metaverse became central at the last CES, notes John T. Kelley, and this year it will be “ubiquitous throughout CES.” “You’ll see companies there that are primarily hardware-focused, like Magic Leap,” the augmented reality company that is now focusing on enterprise uses of the technology.

Microsoft will also have a presence in the Web3 space, and a dedicated studio in the lobby will allow “Web3 specialists to take the stage and discuss digital assets, blockchain technology and the metaverse,” argues John T. Kelley.

“I think Web3 will be the subject of significant discussion throughout the program” of CES, he predicts, “mainly focused on the metaverse and NFTs”.

According to him, Web3 appears in more and more innovative applications. For example, startup Olfactory Virtual Reality, or OVR, “adds smell to headsets so you can now smell in the metaverse,” says John T. Kelley. According to him, a concrete application of this technology will be training in emergency intervention, for example to smell the fire.

A recent partnership was struck between BMW and chip giant Nvidia to present the factory of the future, recalls John T. Kelley. Partnerships like this are “the building blocks of what the future will look like” in the crossover of the metaverse and Web3, he adds. years, beyond simple gamification. »

“I think you’ll see companies at the show showing off their physical products and also launching a metaverse expansion,” adds Kinsey Fabrizio.

NFT

A “small” area of ​​the Aria Hotel is set aside for NFTs, says John T. Kelley, to give companies “an opportunity to gain exposure.”

NFTs, best known for disasters like the Bored Ape Club, are finding new uses in industry, says John T. Kelley. For example, within events, it becomes an access key for participants in an event such as an after party.

“As a holder of this NFT, you can get access to the event, it’s starting to get popular,” he says. That same NFT can become a “single passport” that allows brands to have a kind of connection with their consumers that is different from email. And of course NFT can be bought and sold on a marketplace.

CNET AMD CES 2019

Image: CNET.

CES 2023 headliners

Headliners at this year’s show include AMD CEO Lisa Su, BMW Chairman Oliver Zipse, John May, CEO of John Deere and Ed Bastian, CEO of Delta Airlines.

As for the remote aspect of the show, keynotes will, as in the past, be broadcast live and exhibitors will have virtual booths.

“There are two things that we used in the wake of Covid that people really liked,” says John T. Kelley. “The first is the ability to watch content after the event, so we will have over 100 sessions that you can watch after the event. »

“And then it’s also the opportunity to create better connections with some of the exhibitors, for example by finding a seller before the fair and sending them a message to arrange a meeting”. But also the possibility of holding a video meeting on the CES digital platform.

Search features—such as searching for exhibitors by category (for example, “metaverse”)—have been improved, says John T. Kelley.

“We’ve refined our tools knowing that our audience has changed a bit because we have a more distant audience than the one that was completely live before Covid. »

abbot-booth-ces

Life science giant Abbott is among the major digital health exhibitors returning to CES. Image: CTA.

The magic of a fair

However, distance learning will never completely replicate the physical experience of a trade show. Consider the benefits of face-to-face meetings. The companies present at the fair have an average of 29 meetings.

And “things get lost in the Zoom world,” notes John T. Kelley. Including random encounters that cannot occur there.

“There are the chance encounters,” Kinsey Fabrizio adds, “where you’re standing in line for a cup of coffee, you bump into someone, and you strike up a business relationship.”

“That’s the magic of a fair, the serendipitous moments,” adds John T. Kelley.

All of the remote control features are “a nice addition,” says Kinsey Fabrizio, “but I think seeing a product and having the ability to touch it and experience it is not like that.”

Source: ZDNet.com

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