2015 CES Trends: Smart Objects, Connected Cars, VR, And Drones

Photo courtesy of Sdu7cb via Flickr

The annual Consumer Electronics Show, held in Las Vegas in early January, features some of the most cutting-edge and potentially disruptive technology you’ll see this year.

Last year, we took a look at some of the emerging trends and identified growth in wearables, health gadgets, entertainment technology, and 3D printing. This year’s CES has demonstrated new growth in these areas, along with various other exciting fields of consumer technology.

Here are some rising trends from CES 2015 to look out for.

1. The Internet of Things (IoT)

As we’ve discussed before, Internet-connected objects, known by many as IoT products, are growing exponentially. At CES, some awe-inspiring examples of smart gadgets include a smart plant-watering device called Parrot Pot, an intelligent flash light by Fogo with a built-in GPS and walkie-talkie, and a wifi-connected light bulb system from Misfit.

According to the New York Times, the global IoT market is estimated to exceed $7 trillion by 2020. As security is an increasing concern, CES has also showcased IoT protection products and services, such as Bitdefender’s home security box. 

2. Smart transportation

The future of transportation is brighter, greener, and more luxurious than ever. Connected cars, as we know, are becoming more and more ubiquitous – now, players at CES are advancing personal transport further with new designs and products that vamp up the technological efficiency of cars and more. 

These include Mercede’s Luxury in Motion concept, which showcases a futuristic self-driving vehicle in which passengers can face each other, control settings via gestures, and enjoy hardwood floors and LED lighting.

Then there’s QNX’ all-digital car mirrors, BMW’s 360-degree collision detection, and quick and convenient battery stations for electric vehicles (including a rad new scooter) from startup Gogoro.

3. Wearable Gaming & VR

[contextly_auto_sidebar id=”4osrLVpSySO5je84K1le43jw3DaBvE7J”]Since Oculus Rift debuted on Kickstarter back in 2012, and was bought out by Facebook in 2014, there has been much speculation about when the virtual reality headset would be made available to the public. Though there has yet to be a release date aside from test kits, it’s speculated to be released before 2016.

Oculus aren’t the only ones innovating in interactive, wearable gaming, however. Company Virtuix debuted a VR platform called Omni, which lets users control their avatar with their own feet, burning calories at play and Samsung is developing VR goggles (called Milk VR) which will allow wearers to stream 360-degree video. 

Lastly, all the other kids with their pumped up kicks can really pump it up with Skechers’ sneakers embedded with the game Simon. But only if they can pump up their parents for $65 first.

4. Drones

Is 2015 the year of commercial drones? Some seem to think so, and in fact, GoPro is reportedly planning to launch its very own this year. According to Mashable, CES puts the (very new) global drone market at $130 million, and $1 billion by the end of the decade.

For the first time, the CES show featured an area called the Unmanned Systems Marketplace for drones, drones, and more drones. These include drones by Trace and Airdog, which will follow and record you from a distance, Nixie, a detachable bracelet drone that can take a selfie if you throw it in front of you like a boomerang, and jumping drones that can be controlled with your phone. 

That’s right: get ready for dronies (drone selfies). It’s no longer just a 2014 April Fools concept.

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Jennifer Markert