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CES 2017 – Get Ready for a Smart New World

- January 9, 2017 - 6 Comments

The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) usually highlights important technology trends that could shape the future. This year, artificial intelligence (AI), the smart IoT sensors that fuel it, and increasingly powerful and seamless human machine interfaces (HMIs) topped the list for me.

On the AI front, almost every automotive company is working on driverless cars, powered by dramatic advances in computer vision and deep learning.  With regard to sensors, in the Honda booth we saw a tiny optical sensor that can fit in the rearview mirror and measure throat movement. This significantly improves the Honda Throat Motion Sensorclarity of speech in noisy environments.  In the Denso booth we saw a wide range of imaginative innovations from vacuum cleaner shoes to a robot barista; we also saw a novel contactless haptics system based on an array of ultrasound speakers. Combined with holographic projections and a leap motion hand sensor, this could create a revolutionary HMI where you not only see and interact with a software defined “virtual dashboard” but you can feel it as well!  In the ChangHong booth we saw a contactless EEG brain control device. Embedded in a headrest, this smart sensor picked up enough brain waves for a user to control the speed of a car in a video game!

While far from perfect, these smart sensors and HMIs, when combined with leading AI, could create some incredibly promising advances in the way we work, live, play, and learn.

Nowhere was this more prevalent at the show than in the automotive industry, where we saw smart new experiences in mobility as a service, with personalized driver and passenger journeys that surprise and delight.  In the Hyundai booth, for example, you could explore the future commute to the office – and even step inside the vehicle to choose your mood on arrival. The car monitors biometrics and facial expression, and controls temperature and lighting; it even emits scents like peppermint or sandalwood to help make sure you arrive highly energized or completely relaxed. No more stressful commute to ruin your day!  But this vehicle is only the beginning of the

Denso Contactless Holographic Haptic Controller

mobility experience – Hyundai also showcased a smart mobility chair that transports you seamlessly between the vehicle and the home – to which it docks. It controls music, video, lighting, appliances, security, and much more in a highly intelligent,

anticipatory fashion, based on rich context from ubiquitous networked sensors and actuators – all with voice control, of course!

These new experiences require continuing advances in the flexibility, robustness, and security of networks.  For example, while many auto manufacturers are working on very advanced self-driving capabilities, the “network” in most cars today is where it was 30+ years ago in the enterprise, with a variety of siloed protocols that are difficult to secure.  The Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS), highly automated vehicles, and next generation mobility experiences we saw at CES will revamp in-vehicle networks.  To that end, Cisco is working with Hyundai to create an IP / Ethernet backbone for the vehicle that will streamline and simplify the vehicle and its connectivity to other vehicles, to the infrastructure, and to the cloud.

If CES 2017 foreshadows the future the way it has in previous years, we have a smart new world to look forward to!

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6 Comments

    Hi Shaun, thanks for sharing. For those of us who didn't get to go to CES 2017, this is a great summary. It does appear that there is big potential for significant transformation in almost all aspects of personal and business experiences. Though these will happen once Companies really develop Digital Thinking and a Digital Mindset to develop new business models. From what I know by following John Chambers , CISCO is well poised to lead in the IoE and IoT market transitions and is way ahead of the competition. However, wonder, why the media, analysts don't grasp the level of innovation and future potential of Cisco?

      Hi Dinesh, Thanks for the kind words! I agree – the Digital Mindset is key since everything that can be digitized to provide value will be digitized, and a great deal of wealth will transfer to those who lead from those who are forced to follow. We’ve only just begun to see the fruits of IoT!

  1. Was there any brainchip SNAP technology associated to demonstrations

      Hi Evan, I didn't see that at CES, but that is a very interesting forefront for us at Cisco - you may have seen the announcement about our Connected Roadway work for Highly Automated Vehicles and the new Cisco Innovation Center in Perth, Australia: http://www.nasdaq.com/press-release/brainchip-and-cisco-internet-of-everything-innovation-center-sign-agreement-to-demonstrate-the-20161202-00521 I believe we'll see increasingly powerful intelligence at every layer of the network.

  2. comment

    Thanks for sharing some of your highlights of CES. So much new tech and innovation can be overwhelming! The "Digital Mindset" will need to be especially good at assessing and prioritizing investments.

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