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Published:
2020-01-04 17:10:06 BdST

5G, robots, autonomous farming and more -- hottest trends to watch at CES 2020


The 2020 Consumer Electronics Show (CES), the world's premier consumer electronics show, is just around the corner. It runs from Jan. 7 to 10, but features a two-day preshow chock full of revealing corporate presentations and press conferences hosted by the big boys of the industry on Jan. 5 and 6th.

CES is considered the largest and most influential tech trade event on the planet, where the entire technology ecosystem from top-tier giants to emerging start ups come together to do business and cross-pollinate ideas and innovations.

The convention boasts over 4,500 exhibitors, developers, manufacturers, and suppliers specializing in consumer tech hardware, software, content, and delivery systems.

Besides the many deals transacted there, its main claim to fame is as the world's premier showcase for unveiling cutting-edge technology and next-generation innovations by the industry's top pioneers and trend-setters that will go on to reshape the consumer experience.

Here are some of the top trends and innovations anticipated at this year's show.

TELEVISIONS

Mega-screen, 8K, OLED TV's and much more. As streaming giants lure more viewers out of the cinemas and back to their living room couches, big-screen TVs are surging in market share, leading to some fierce competition between TCL, LG, Samsung, and Sony, with other manufacturers, like Vizio and Hisense, expected to weigh in too.

8K TV prices are still beyond most consumers' reach at about 3,500 U.S. dollars, though Chinese multinational, TCL, now the 2nd best-selling TV brand in the world, is applying downward price pressure to make these TV's more affordable.

Additional innovations will continue to be developed, such as MicroLED, rollable OLEDs, and Dual LCDs, but are not likely to be affordable in volume for some time.

5G

5G is "the big enchilada" - the Holy Grail that many of the major electronics firms are pursuing. We expect to see significant advances in speed, efficiency and reliability of 5G this year that will impact virtually all sectors, most notably, communications, entertainment and digital health. Near-term, we will likely see more laptops equipped with mobile broadband capability to provide 5G hotspot access, as needed, until real 5G networks are fully deployed.

AR/VR

"Immersion" is the buzzword for AR and VR as they come of age. Players want to feel and interact as much as possible with their cyber-realities. This year manufacturers and developers will be moving beyond goggles alone, to cyber shoes, gloves, chairs, full-body cybersuits, and more, that will enable players or workers to feel, as well as see and hear, the breezes, the bullets, the punches, while they fend off zombies, storm the castle or otherwise be present in the virtual worlds they choose to inhabit.

ROBOTS

Nothing inflames the imagination as much as robots and this year, building on the surge in products last year, they will be coming in all shapes, sizes and species as they continue to become more sophisticated and technologically complex.

From workplace robots to home vacuums to kitty companions, there will be something for everyone seeking cybernetic products.

In counterpoint to the Terminator's malevolent Skynet, CES 2020 will also be addressing how robots can help humans, save lives, preserve the environment, explore outer space, find technical glitches in key equipment, enhance health care and recovery and be a friend.

WEARABLE TECH

Wearable tech is exploding and we will see lots of innovation in fitness, fashion, social-sensing, health and communication. Wearable tech devices will include sleep monitors, smart fabric, fitness sensors, and much, much more.

Augmented Reality is also moving from workplace apps to innovative consumer apps in things like next-generation wearable tech-heavy glasses.

SMART HOMES, IOT KITCHEN APPLIANCES

CES's cutting-edge entrepreneurs will be invading the kitchen with dozens of cool ways to increase the functionality of our cooking spaces. As the heart of the home, people spend a lot of time in the kitchen and time-saving devices have dominated kitchen design trends since the bad ole 1800s.

This year, we expect to see many time and cost-saving IoT WiFi-connected kitchen devices from refrigerators to ovens to pantries to coffee makers, that track the stock in your cupboards, generate grocery lists, order groceries delivered online, scan your labels for healthy recipes, generate healthier alternatives and self-run your oven.

FOLDABLE SCREENS, DUAL SCREEN DISPLAYS

Foldable phones are in the lead, but foldable computers and dual screen laptops are on the way too. These are still in the development stage, but are ramping up to be a hot commodity by year's end of 2020 and 2021, as flex-screen technology enables screens to be seamlessly doubled or even tripled in size by unfolding them.

Lenovo, Microsoft and Asus all have foldable projects in the works that could come sooner than expected.

REMOTE HEALTH MONITORING

Healthcare providers are seeking to free themselves from the constraints of wearable tech and have been exploring AI tech and computer vision devices that could enable more remote sensing of health conditions.

They could use data on patients or user movements, breathing rates, sounds and more. This is anticipated to be especially useful for things like baby monitors that can be accessed remotely via WiFi.

GAMING

The battle between online and console games is likely to continue to heat up, as the shift toward mobile and cloud-gaming continues, supported by devices from Google, Apple and Microsoft that do not need consoles for good gameplay and can be accessed across multiple devices.

The convenience and ease-of-use of cloud or mobile-based gaming continues to entice more consumers into the gaming world, a trend that is not likely to slow down. New CPUs and GPUs could also be in the offing, with speculations that AMD, Intel and Nvidia may be making announcements this year at CES.

PERSONAL TRANSLATORS

As the world grows smaller and more connected, it was only a matter of time before the "Universal Translator" in Star Trek, the instantaneous translation device, became commercially viable.

Now, there are multiple devices targeting this category and we are likely to see some stunning new ones unveiled this year, like Longogo's 100 language translator that does not require a smartphone connection.

AUTONOMOUS FARMING

With global climate change playing havoc with weather systems around the globe, with urban space becoming prohibitively expensive and consumer trends for local produce growing, agriculture is increasingly turning to indoor modular farming solutions that give them local options, reliability and control.

At CES 2020, we are expected to see indoor modules that can control humidity, temperature, water, fertilizer, CO2 levels and quality control all with the touch of a button.

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