Over the course of 4 days last week, CES hosted their first ever virtual exhibition where companies from around the globe presented their latest tech offerings. The year prior to CES usually gives the industry an idea as to what we can expect; 2020 was unprecedented. Video consumption skyrocketed across every touchpoint as we weren’t allowed outside. As such it was clear that CES would bring innovation that facilitated consumer viewing habits and those of gamers. In a year where health has dominated the news, it was important for tech to stand up and help. Many of the sessions at CES 2021 brought us pandemic-related technology. Here are our picks from the media sector and beyond.
2020 showed TV’s strength; we watched it, we talked about it and we even relied on it. In the wake of a year where we all watched more TV, CES 2021 exhibited a vast number of innovative screens. LG showcased two large screens for slightly different purposes. Their 55-inch screen with adjustable angles allows for watching TV in comfort whilst their 88-inch reproduces the cinematic experiences without the need for extra speakers. TCL also announced their affordable 8K Ultra HD Connected TV offering that is set to be released later this year with Mini-LED backlights and the Roku operating system. Perhaps one of the most innovative screens exhibited, albeit not related to the media sector, is Razer’s futuristic gaming chair whose screen rolls up and folds up into the back of the chair, allowing gamers to game desk-free.
Innovative speakers contribute to high-quality viewing experience that these screens contribute to, as such, Denon has released a smart speaker with 3D surround sound and a multiroom experience. To make the experience even more versatile, the wireless power system from Resonance is set to transport the TV landscape to new places.
Every screen needs excellent platforms to allow viewers to stream high-definition visual content. As such, Sony has unveiled their latest streaming platform, Bravia Core, that brings high quality content straight to the consumer. ASUS also exhibited their creatively named ZenBeam Latte projector, which links with TV streaming services, to allow consumers to view content from a machine the size of a coffee cup.
CES 2021 also revealed exciting prospects for the laptop and phone market. HP exhibited their latest effort, the Elite Dragonfly G2 business laptop, which weighs in at only 1kg and is 80% made up of recycled materials. Its 5G capabilities cement its place as an ideal laptop for businessmen on the move or at home. Laptops aren’t just for business. Nvidia announced its RTX 3000 graphics cards are coming to gaming laptops which will boost performance across laptop gaming. The phone sector has only got bigger in recent years, one only has to look at Apple’s products to see the stark difference in phone sizes. However, CES 2021 showcased something considerably smaller. Zanco released a phone which they claim to be the smallest in the world. It seems texting and calling only for those who purchase one.
Further afield from the media sector, there were many eye-catching innovations on display. As the crisis continues to affect our daily lives, Razer claims to have made the world’s smartest mask. They have manufactured a new reusable N95 respirator called Project Hazel, which is transparent and has audio processing built-in to make your voice sound clearer. Samsung also made waves with next-gen robotics, Bot Care and Bot Handy, that are set to assist with household tasks and act as a virtual assistant. Caterpillar, a company who has a lot of experience developing driverless tractors, spoke on the possibilities of making a driverless world a reality. Finally, it would not be right to leave sustainability aside in the current climate. Experts through CES discussed the possibility of smart cities and smart homes, which seek to increase inter-connectivity and also drive economic sustainable growth.
© Knowledia News
Although the innovations took centre stage, there was still plenty of space for discussions on the latest technological trends. There were two sessions on how VOD services should position themselves in a market that is increasingly saturated and complex. Experts predicted that consumers would increasingly favour AVOD platforms in a bid to save money. In a similar vein, the pros and cons of Addressable TV were addressed, and it was highlighted that collaboration is needed to achieve mass expansion, as it is also needed, as revealed in another session, in cross-media measurement.
After the most unprecedented year that we had in 2020, CES 2021 has made it clear that the emphasis is on making viewing as comfortable and riveting as possible through high-quality screens, streaming platforms and speakers whilst sustainability remains at the forefront of everyone’s mindset.