Top 3 CES 2022 Takes!

This year's CES, the much-anticipated annual consumer electronics exhibition, looked very different. 

Certain aspects were familiar: firms displayed the latest batch of dazzling televisions. The storm of weird gadgets just grew odder. There was also no shortage of high-tech health trackers, such as a lamp that monitors your sleeping patterns. 

However, this year's CES was also a huge test of how to hold an in-person event in the event of a pandemic. Attendees were given Covid-19 rapid testing, and masks and evidence of vaccination were requested.

In the run-up to the show, a number of prominent tech businesses and media outlets withdrew. Photos of practically vacant showroom areas were extensively circulated. A number of speeches were pre-recorded, including the CES launch event with General Motors CEO Mary Barra. 

"It was strange," said Martin DeBono, president of GAF Energy, who chose to show off his company's new solar roof shingle by going in person. "It was probably my eleventh year attending CES, and the absence of crowds was odd." 

Even yet, the products on show this year drew a lot of attention. Here are five key lessons from the massive technology trade show:

Sony Joins the Metaverse

It's been years since CES had a "next big thing" that everyone was talking about, but the metaverse, which refers to initiatives to merge virtual and augmented reality technology in a new online domain, dominated the conversation this year. 

The industry leader right now is Facebook (FB) parent company Meta and its Oculus gaming system, which is undergoing a big hiring binge to develop up the concept, but many other companies are still attempting to get in on the action. At CES, Sony announced the PlayStation VR 2 headset and the VR2 Sense controller, as well as HTC's Vive wrist controller for the Vive Focus 3 headset.

And if these items are any indicator, these businesses see the need for more immersive hardware and experiences.

The VR2 Sense controller, for example, includes eye tracking and headset feedback to enhance the player's perceptions of in-game actions. Gamers may feel a character's "elevated pulse during crucial moments, the rush of things passing near to the player's head, or the thrust of a vehicle as the character drives forward," according to the business in a press release.

"This is the first time in a long time that we see a new and significant theme emerge at CES," said Pedro Pacheco, senior research director at market research firm Gartner. "For years, this has always been about AI, internet-of-things, or autonomous vehicles." "At the present, many organizations are considering ways to bring Metaverse to life as part of their long-term IT plan."

BMW Captures the Stage

Auto tech is typically a significant part of CES, but this year it seemed like every announcement made the news: BMW teased a color-changing automobile, John Deere showed a self-driving tractor, and businesses pledged to make electric vehicles more accessible. 

The electronic panels of BMW's electric iX concept car were coated to protect them from the elements, similar to those seen on a Kindle e-reader. BMW demonstrated how an owner may change the color of his car from black to white in a couple of seconds in a demonstration. (BMW has not stated whether it expects to implement this technology in a production vehicle.)

Several new electric vehicles were also introduced, including the Silverado EV, which starts at $39,900, and the 2024 Chevy Equinox, which starts at $30,000. Meanwhile, the trend of digital corporations joining the automobile manufacturing market continued, with Sony announcing plans for its own car brand, following in the footsteps of Xiaomi and Foxconn. If reports are to be believed, Apple may also join the club.

More Companies Join in to make Different Form Factors

For the previous few years, tech companies have been experimenting with foldable technology, but at CES 2022, many businesses, including Samsung, demonstrated superior models, demonstrating how the niche market is expanding. 

Samsung's tri-fold Flex S and Flex G ideas fold a tablet into three parts to resemble a "s," hinting at how its foldable smartphone lines, Flip and Fold, may evolve in the future. Meanwhile, Asus' new Zenbook 17, a 17-inch foldable laptop with an OLED display that can be used as a tablet or folded in half like a laptop, with a 12.5-inch screen on top and an on-screen keyboard displayed below, can be used as a tablet or folded in half like a laptop.

Other companies, such as Dell, have embraced the hybrid work trend with products. Dell's Concept Flow links and disconnects laptops with a second display based on proximity, and Dell's movable Pari webcam prototype can be mounted anywhere, including on the side of a computer screen or above a drawing pad if you want colleagues to see notes in real time during a conference.

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