[This is the introduction to my latest note. E-mail us to join the mailing list for the full note.]
There is no way for the human mind to fully grasp the Consumer Electronics Show (CES). There is just too much going on, you would need a Big Data analysis of just the blog posts coming out of the show to even get a good summary. Everyone seems to have one topic that they see at the show that stands out, but even that is futile. Several people called out the huge number of drone makers at the show, but there were really less than a dozen actual manufacturers selling unmanned aircraft.
To cope with my annual visit to the show, I try to focus on just a small number of things. I usually pick a topic ahead of time, and this year I wanted to look at drones. I also check out all the major mobile players (Qualcomm, Samsung, etc.) who have large booths but who are really saving their big guns for Mobile World Congress next month. And then I try to visit the various areas roped off for Chinese companies, an archipelago that has grown considerably over the past five years.
In addition, and despite my disclaimer at the top of this note, I actually think there is one important trend emerging from the show. After years of mindless marketing about the Internet of Things (IoT), I think some of the realities of that proposition are starting to manifest. Instead of hazy, happy descriptions, we are starting to see clear delineation of some of the market segments that will constitute this ‘connected future’, real products are getting launched..
In this note, I will walk through each of those subjects, and point out bigger implications.