Coderus technical CEO, Mark Thomas, predicts important steps forward in affordability for consumers and a great year ahead for British technology businesses.
Those interested in consumer technologies don’t have to wait for long in the calendar year to get their fix of cutting-edge innovation. The world’s biggest consumer technology show – CES 2020 – will take place from 7th to 10th January and the event is promising us some exciting developments.
That’s not just because Apple is attending the show for the first time since 1992. CES 2020 is shaping up to bring us a step further into our connected world, with the vital security features and customer experiences that will bring many of the technologies that have been just out of reach for many, firmly into our day to day lives, with real impact.
What is next for home automation?
Home automation technology has been steadily evolving and acceptance of this useful technology is becoming more widespread, with Siri’s and Alexa’s ‘dulcet’ tones gracing many living spaces across the UK. Virtual assistance is, by no means, the pinnacle here, though. Smart appliances, such as lighting and entertainment systems, basic security monitoring and more, are growing in popularity.
And, as price points start to come down and data security concerns are further addressed, we can look forward to better smart-enabling technologies for our electronic devices, an expansion in the energy efficiency area and a rise in smart screen command centres, smart mirrors and the like, to name just a few.
Watch this space for PassiveBolt’s ‘smart lock’, which will convert existing door locking systems to become touch-activated with electronic key technology. Convenient and secure, this technology instantly alerts the homeowner to any unauthorised entry attempts via its integrated mobile app.
How will wearable technology transform health?
Smart homes can help improve our wellbeing, too and health tracking is also developing fast. This is, of course, augmented by the growing acceptance of wearables. These will get smarter. CES 2020 is promising developments in digital fitness to make exercise more informative, including fitness tracking devices and smart fabrics for heartrate monitoring.
Wearables are also making health management easier. There’s already been great progress in monitoring blood pressure, blood sugar and blood oxygen levels (Vo2) – technologies that are making a real difference to people with hyper- and hypotension, diabetes and hypoxemia – and advances here will mean cost comes down, making them more available to the masses.
Interestingly, wearables will also make a difference in this arena. Wireless, noise-cancelling earbuds with better battery life were big news at the show last year and, this year, price points are expected to reduce further. Of course, entertainment is the number one use for these but, for people suffering from poor sleep patterns, the ability to cancel out noise and to play music, wirelessly, can be a game-changer.
Watch this space, too, for mind-reading tech. NextMind is rumoured to be showcasing its head-mounted, non-invasive device that will pick up brain signals as they cross the wearer’s visual cortex and translate them in real-time into digital commands.
What will the advances in telecommunications and AV be?
Of course, as well as the introduction of more augmented reality technologies, robots and the like, CES will also see the launch of a host of next-level phones (many of which will be 5G-enabled), speakers and TVs (optimised for the 8K revolution). For gamers, graphics cards are likely to advance, while Sony may well use the event to tease us toward the debut of the PS5.
Video streaming services are also likely to push forward as the marketplace gets set to become even more competitive. Services from HBO Max, Peacock and Quibi are getting set to join this exciting industry’s leaders – Netflix, Amazon, Hulu and Disney, giving us more choice and, again, bringing prices down for all.
Watch this space for LG’s transparent OLED TV. While this was launched behind closed doors to the few at CES last year, it’s likely to be a showcase piece for CES 2020.
What will drive improved experiences and how will AI be part of this?
As well as being the year we’ll see many technologies become more affordable, we’ll also see a drive for creating next-level user experiences, with manufacturers keen to ensure we stay loyal to their brands in an increasingly competitive marketplace.
CES is the annual hub for launching technologies into the marketplace that will make a significant difference in the year ahead. Artificial intelligence is driving much of the smart technologies coming forward. With the UK leading the way in artificial intelligence globally – in 2018 the UK’s AI sector reached £998m, which is almost the sum of the rest of Europe’s investments combined – that’s good news for Great British business, as we get set to move boldly into the year ahead.