Our Top 5 Takeaways from CES 2018!
The new year started off with a bang, and we’re not talking about the fireworks! We’re talking about the biggest consumer technology show in the world! This year, CES gave us an insider’s look at how AI, the IoT, connected cars and other next-gen technologies will shape our future. From robots that do your day-to-day chores to AI-powered smart speakers, the show was jam-packed with the latest in innovative tech.
To give you an idea of our favorites, we rounded up a list of the top five coolest, quirkiest and most innovative products at CES 2018.
1. The Smarter, Smart Speaker
(Image from Daniel Cooper, Engadget)
This year, CES proved that the next-gen of IoT is all about embedding devices with AI and automation capabilities. We saw AI technology implemented in everything from automobiles to smart home devices. Smart speakers with AI-powered voice-recognition technology was one of the most talked about products at the show, which isn’t too surprising given NPR and Edison Research’s recent study reporting that one in six U.S. adults already own a smart speaker.
At the heart of many of these voice-activated gadgets is Amazon Alexa. With a dedicated booth at the show, Amazon Alexa gave attendees a peak at its smart home ecosystem, including the Amazon Echo Show which features Cypress’ 802.11ac Wi-Fi combo chip. The influence of Amazon Alexa went far beyond its booth, however; Tiernan Ray at Barron’s wrote that you could’ve called CES 2018 the “Amazon Show.”
Headphone company Ashley Chloe introduced its stylish Ensembl smart speaker, which you can connect to voice assistant platforms and jazz up by adding a 360-degree IP camera for home security or a glowing lantern disc for outside use. Things didn’t stop there; LG teased its new ThinQ Speaker with built-in support for Google Assistant which enables the device to control other LG smart home products. It’s clear that these speakers are being positioned more and more as the gateway to controlling the rest of your smart home.
2. Connected Car Technology is Driving Forward
(Image from Sean O’Kane, The Verge)
The race to fully autonomous vehicles is in full swing so we knew CES would bring huge announcements from automakers. Toyota’s Concept-i touts an AI-dashboard where passengers can interact with a 2-D animated avatar that monitors the driver’s attention.
Mercedes’ Smart Vision EQ concept car forgoes a console, steering wheel and pedals to instead let drivers use a large dashboard to help them navigate the road, the radio and so much more. The Smart Vision EQ can even welcome you by name and wink at pedestrians – we’re wondering if that will be a popular feature.
For electric car fans, Byton’s concept car with 5G capabilities and autonomous driving has got you covered. We were impressed by the 40-inch curved LCD screen and dashboard that can be controlled by hand gestures from the driver and passengers.
3. Revealing Our Automotive Announcements
Auto makers weren’t the only ones to make waves in the connected car space. At CES we met with analysts, media and partners to demonstrate how Cypress is enabling the next generation of automobiles with not just one, but two new solutions. We showcased our TrueTouch CYAT817 touchscreen controller, designed to provide a seamless infotainment experience with ultra-fast response times. With hover and force touch features, our solutions are packed with the advanced features needed for the next-generation of infotainment systems.
Our other automotive announcement was the CW89359 Wi-Fi combo chipset, which integrates two complete Wi-Fi subsystems and a Bluetooth subsystem, enabling multiple users to connect and stream unique content to their devices simultaneously. This chipset is our highest-performing Wi-Fi device in our IoT portfolio, meeting automotive customers’ rigorous safety requirements. Our chipset is also the only solution on market that can simultaneously stream 2.4GHz and 5GHz Wi-Fi signals at full throughput. As our CEO Hassane El-Khoury succinctly explained to The Street, "We own the automotive [combo chip] market…that's a fact.”
4. Smart Home’s Flaunted Their I.Q.
As a company focused on solving problems, we were especially keen on seeing smart home products that showcased how connected technologies are making our lives easier. Kohler introduced its smart bathroom range which features a voice-activated shower so users can set water temperature, change the lighting and even stream music. The company also showed off a smart mirror that allows you to use Amazon Alexa to adjust the lighting around the mirror.
Voice-activated security products were also a hit at the show. Somfy’s outdoor camera can send a "customized voice alert" whenever a person crosses within the camera's field of view, bringing to homes the same type of technology many people enjoy on their laptops and smartphones. The smart home device also comes with email alerts, two-way talk and night vision to keep you covered 24/7. We also fell in love with iPal, a humanoid robot designed to bring companionship and care for children and senior citizens. As devices get smarter with AI technology, we expect to see more people embracing gadgets that they can have real conversations with.
5. The Oura Smart Ring Featuring PSoC 6
Our PSoC 6® BLE microcontroller also made a splash at CES this year, powering Oura Health’s new Smart Ring. This ring tracks users’ sleep, recovery and daily activities so that the wearers can improve their overall health. Our ultra-low power, flexible solution extends the Oura ring’s battery life by up to seven days with just one charge, achieving three times the battery life of its predecessor. If you’re a fan of wearables and fitness tracking and have an eye for style, this sleek smart ring is the perfect accessory! You can pre-order Oura’s smart ring starting in April 2018.
That’s a wrap on CES 2018! Every year this show brings the latest technologies and innovations that you didn’t even know you needed – but absolutely must have! We’re proud to be a part of the embedded technology community that constantly strives to find ways to solve the next generation of design challenges. If you missed us at this show, be sure to check out our events calendar to see where we’ll be next!