How my first trip to CES changed my definition of cool
By Alissa Santoro
For anyone in the technology field, that first trip to the Consumer Electronics Show is a rite of passage. This year it was my turn, and I couldn’t wait to explore the epicenter of consumer electronics and experience all the show had to offer.
I was not disappointed; the Las Vegas strip was filled with technological advancements across industries, underscoring how technology has infiltrated every aspect of our lives. We even had a newsworthy power outage to remind us how dependent we are on technology.
This year Media iQ hosted several clients at CES so that we could all revel in the technological advances that have come about in the past year. There’s something to be said about putting “business” to the side and simply enjoying the company of clients turned friends and sharing a mutual appreciation for the industry we’re all lucky to be a part of. As part of this trip, we took our clients on a highly coveted show floor tour led by StoryTech. We visited the Sands Expo at the Venetian Hotel, often referred to as Tech West, which encompasses revolutions in fitness and health, the Internet of Things (IoT), smart home and other high-growth technologies changing the way we live work and play.
When I used to think of consumer electronics, my mind went immediately to the devices and capabilities that offer the highest entertainment value or novelty – the fun factor. And there was plenty of fun at CES. But I ended up discovering the most fascinating and inspiring technology in surprising places.
Technically classified as a “millennial” (but truly only due to the year I was born), and as a new homeowner, I was expecting myself to be drawn to the Smart Home zone – which showcased all the latest manifestations of the connected home – and I was. I enjoyed learning about the functional technology designed to simplify our home lives and especially how the concept of the connected home is being applied to smart neighborhoods and smart cities, taking connectivity to the next level. Connected ecosystems driven by technological advancements offer the potential for faster economic growth, integrated mobility, increased security, and an overall better quality of life.
But the really cool tech? For me that turned out to be the incredible advancements being made in Digital Health, because that’s where groundbreaking technology isn’t just novel, it’s also life-altering.
From wearable monitors to robots assisting surgeries to glasses that enable the blind to see, the innovation happening in the digital health ecosystem is nothing short of awe-inspiring. Developments in digital health tech have the power to improve quality of life and potentially extend our life spans by recognizing life-threatening illnesses while they are still in a curable stage.
Equally interesting is the trend toward personalization in this arena. One vendor said something that resonated with me: “…just as different as we are on the outside, we are equally as different on the inside.”
There is no “one-size-fits-all” answer when it comes to treating health issues, and the treatment goals of each individual can differ drastically. Based on what I saw, I think med-tech gear will increasingly focus on the individual – and I can’t wait to see what’s next.