2 Days at CES
Last week, I was once again able to attend the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas.
CES is a massive, internationally renowned electronics and technology trade show, attracting major companies and industry professionals worldwide. The annual show is held each January at the Las Vegas Convention Center.
The conference showcases the latest and greatest in computing, electronics, technology, robotics, emerging technologies and everything else in between.
In the old days, there was another convention called COMDEX which focused more towards computing. That show ceased existence in 2003 and much of what was showcased there was simply merged into CES.
For those who have never been to CES, I will say that first and foremost it is hard to appreciate the scale and size of the show until you walk it. Having attended many times before, the main rules (at least to me) are simple: wear comfortable shoes, carry very little, eat a hearty breakfast, bring snacks, and pace yourself. There is a lot to see and chances are you won’t see it all.
Approximately 170,000 people attended the show, with 50,000 or so coming from overseas. The show housed about 2.47 million square feet of exhibits across 3 major sites in Las Vegas. More than 3,800 exhibitors had a booth at the conference.
I was told by one of our taxi drivers that over 3,000 taxis were dispatched in town and that even with those taxis and many untold Uber and Lyft rides, the numbers were still not enough to move that amount of people around the city for 4 days. You really felt it in the mornings before the show and at night on your way to dinner.
We wound up taking the city’s monorail system which was surprisingly effective (as well as cost effective) at moving hordes of people from major casinos to the 3 different convention sites.
My biggest takeaways from CES are as follows:
- Drones are immensely popular and people believe there is a real business here, especially on the consumer side of things.
- Last year’s show was 3D printing heavy. There were just as many 3D printing vendors here this year, but it feels as if the excitement around this industry might be fading a bit, or at least it appeared a bit muted compared to last year.
- Biggest winners of the conference, at least to me, were wearables/health trackers and the Internet of Things (IoT). Connected devices in the household were everywhere. Some seemed downright ridiculous but many were focused on solving real consumer needs.
- 4K is coming, whether we are ready or not. It was tough to tell if companies are serious about 8K content or just showing off their 8K TV’s to simply show them off.
- The same robot companies were there as last year. Not sure anyone has really cracked this yet in a meaningful way.
- The autonomous vehicle is almost here.
At the end of the day, take CES for what it is, a glorification of all things technology and a fascinating glimpse into where things may be moving.
Oh, and make sure to book your dinner reservations early.
Matthew Achak is the President and Co-Founder of FCR. His role within FCR involves actively managing all company wide sales, marketing, business development, social media, public relations, client facing communications, and ongoing program growth. Founded in 2005 in Roseburg, OR , FCR is the most respected and outsource provider in the industry.