All tech eyes will be on Las Vegas today as the annual Consumer Electronics Show opens. The event has become known for hatching new technologies and tech products. Jim Barry is the Media Spokesman for the Consumer Technology Association, which represents more than 2000 consumer technology companies and owns and produces CES. Greater Media’s Buzz Knight, who’s covering CES for Radio Ink spoke with Barry about what he expects to see from the floor this year.
Buzz Knight: What do you think will be the big “buzz” items this year at CES?
Jim Barry: I think there will be considerable buzz about Virtual Reality with more players entering the category following Oculus Rift’ success at CES two years ago, followed by its purchase by Facebook shortly thereafter. Samsung, Google, HTC, Sony, and many others are now looking at the category. Other buzzworthy categories will include auto tech, droids, and health-and-fitness tech.
BK: Every year there are products that are a bit quirky at CES. Any of those come to mind?
JB: I’m sure there will be a slew of quirky products as usual. One that caught my eye in the pre-show pitches was a Star Wars R2D2 droid that includes a small refrigerator that holds a six pack.
BK: What trends do you see emerging when it comes to mobile phones?
JB: Mobile phones have become bigger and have become an integral part of many other devices and services, including virtual reality, home controls, and health and fitness apps.
BK: Why is CES important to spur us all on with the creative process?
JB: Why is CES important? In a word: innovation. With 3,500 exhibitors and scores of conference sessions, there’s so much to spur the creative mind. Eureka Park is one of the best examples, having grown in just a few years to some 500 exhibits with tiny companies looking to bring forth the next big thing.
BK: What will emerge from the automotive side of CES 2016?
JB: The automotive side is 25 percent bigger than last year and it can be summed up as connected, electric, and autonomous. There’s word of Ford and Google announcing an autonomous vehicle deal, Faraday Future introducing a new electric car (these are execs who worked for Tesla), and there’s sure to be much more in the auto space again this year.