CES 2022: Five tech trends to watch in an unusual year

Nothing in this year’s CES will be normal. This includes some of the biggest trends expected at the show.

However, a long list of tech players have decided not to visit Las Vegas. Strict Covid-19 quarantine requirements in China have made it difficult for many Chinese companies to travel, including popular drone exhibitor and maker DJI, and Israel in December banned its citizens from traveling to the United States.

General Motors Co. CEO Mary Barra will deliver her speech virtually. T-Mobile US Inc.‘s

CEO Mike Sievert will not be giving his keynote address at all. Mainstays of the event such as Intel Corp.

, Lenovo Group Ltd.

, LG Electronics Inc.

and Panasonic Corp.

have withdrawn or significantly reduced their in-person staff, and the largest tech companies, including Alphabet Inc.

by Google, Meta Platforms Inc.

(formerly Facebook), Microsoft Corp.

and Amazon.com Inc.

, who usually played smaller roles, decided to stay home. (Our own team canceled their intention to be there in person.)

Yet many companies still want to be in Las Vegas to get that face-to-face contact, said CTA CEO Gary Shapiro. “You can only do a lot by video chat and over the phone,” he said.

An air purifier from Bemis Manufacturing Co.


Bemis Manufacturing Co.

While in-person demonstrations and unveilings will be rare, expect plenty of news and not just from the traditional TV, audio, and home appliance categories. The automotive industry has become such an important part of the show that it takes over the new West Hall expansion of the Las Vegas Convention Center. And many other tech-savvy companies see even uncrowded CES as a chance to grab some attention.

“There’s always a bunch of stuff out there that I never would have considered consumer electronics,” said Tim Bajarin, technical analyst at Creative Strategies. “But it’s a much more diverse spectacle than it’s ever been,” he added. He said he had been to CES 45 times, missing a few in the late ’70s and early’ 80s. He had planned to attend again this year before Omicron stepped in.

Here’s what should be available for this year, from family tech to food, with a sprinkling of metaverse, cryptocurrency, and NFT.

Make yourself comfortable at home

We spent two years mostly hanging out at home, and tech companies took note. They feature products designed to help users relax and decompress when they’re not typing on a computer or zooming in on a meeting. They’ve designed smart beds that can give you a nudge when you wake up, tubs that keep the water temperature constant, and air purifiers that also add scents to a room.

Developers are focusing on sensor-assisted products such as lamps, toilets and tubs that react to time of day, air quality or presence in the room, the latest evolution of the Internet of Things.

A Sleep Number bed.


Sleep number

“It’s the shift from a connected home to a smart home that uses environmental signals to signal the sound, the lights, the overall feel of the home,” said Mitch Klein, executive director of the Z-Wave Alliance , a smart home standard. organization.

Bemis Manufacturing Co. will introduce a new line of smart air purifiers designed to automatically adapt to indoor air quality and emit essential oil aromas. At night, gadgets detect that the lights are down and reduce noise so you can sleep.

Sleep Corp Number.

and Sleepme Inc. are among the companies unveiling next-generation bed technology with more advanced detection and response capabilities for adults. Cradlewise touts similar technology for babies, using artificial intelligence that can tell when kids wake up, learn what music will soothe them, and smoothly fall back to sleep.

CarePredict Inc. will present an update to its Tempo wrist-worn device.



Caring for children and parents

CES 2022 will have many technologies for the so-called “sandwich generation”, adults who care for both their children and their parents: a baby monitor equipped with artificial intelligence capable of detecting a covered face or a rollover, room sensors to track the movement of the elderly, and health and activity clothing designed to meet the needs of each age group.

Florida-based CarePredict Inc. will present an update to its wrist-worn Tempo that makes it easier for caregivers to communicate with older loved ones (or ensure they are properly cared for). The new CareVoice feature allows people to send audio messages to the wearer of the watch, whether it’s a greeting from a grandchild or a reminder to take medication.

“It really is a human touch, even when you’re not around,” said CarePredict CEO Satish Movva. “Your voice on their wrist. “

The device already detects falls and can send an alert when the wearer skips meals, sleeps less or has other activity outside of the norm.

Orbisk will offer a device that uses image recognition to help hotels, restaurants and others reduce food waste.



Save the planet

Many big tech companies have shared their efforts to make their products more environmentally friendly. This means using more recycled materials, making their devices easier to repair, and reducing packaging around products.

Some of the products on display at CES include a hydrogen fuel cell flying car concept from French company Maca and a tabletop washing machine from another French company, Auum, designed to reduce single-use plastic by cleaning and while drying a glass. in 10 seconds.

RanMarine Technology’s WasteShark is a floating autonomous drone that cleans up pollution from waterways and collects water quality data.


RanMarine technology

Jong-Hee Han, vice president of Samsung Electronics and head of the company’s new TV, home appliance and mobile division,will play his keynote on Tuesday outlining Samsung’s plans to create customizable, eco-friendly technology.

From the Netherlands, RanMarine Technology will present WasteShark, a floating autonomous drone that cleans up pollution from waterways and collects water quality data, while Orbisk will present a device that uses image recognition to help hotels, restaurants and more reduce food waste.

A meat alternative made from mushrooms by MycoTechnology.



Cooking and eating

The liveliest thing at CES 2020, the last in-person show before the pandemic, wasn’t a gadget, software, or service, but Impossible Pork from Impossible Foods Inc., a plant-based meat made for cooking. and smell like pig earth.

This year at the show, a half-day food-tech conference will showcase advancements in areas such as agriculture, ingredient innovation, meal kits and deliveries, vertical farming and, of course, more plant-based meat. Impossible Foods will be there, as will MycoTechnology, which will launch a mushroom-based meat alternative.

The conference will also cover “how robotics will change the face of food,” said Michael Wolf, founder of The Spoon, an online food technology industry publication that hosts the event. For example, agricultural equipment giant Deere & Co.

will discuss how automation can solve labor shortages and unpredictable weather conditions.

A tech industry battle is taking shape on the metaverse. WSJ tech reporter Meghan Bobrowsky explains the concept and why tech companies like Facebook, Roblox and Epic Games are investing billions to develop this digital space. Photo: History blocks

Look ahead

The Metaverse is a hot topic right now. In October, Facebook Inc. changed its name to Meta Platforms Inc., in preparation for the Internet’s next chapter: People wear high-tech glasses so their avatars can interact, no matter where they are in the world. At CES 2022, tech companies of all sizes are showcasing tools to build and navigate this virtual future.

Hyundai Motor Group will allow visitors to create avatars and try out new concept cars in cyberspace. Startup Bhaptics will demonstrate gaming gloves designed to replace portable VR controllers. Samsung markets its metaverse ambitions with a virtual reality interior design platform.

And the conference hosts a new program to discuss non-fungible tokens (aka NFT), virtual certificates that show you own a digital item.

“Are we a little ahead of our skis on the themes of the metaverse and the NFT?” Yes, ”said Maribel Lopez, senior analyst at tech industry analysis firm Lopez Research. “But that’s kind of the goal of CES. ”

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Write to Shara Tibken at [email protected] and Dalvin Brown at [email protected]

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