Technology now stretches a long way beyond PCs, tablets and smartphones into a wide range of devices that are becoming more integrated into everyday life. Hot topics for the next International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in January include 3D printing, ZigBee short-range radio, Digital Health gadgets, and MotionTech. These will be featured in "tech zones" that make it easier for visitors to explore emerging technologies. Among the lifestyle-oriented options, there will also be zones for Silvers (aka Baby Boomers), MommyTech, and FashionWare (wearable technologies).
The MotionTech zone will focus on MEMS (Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems) or micro-machines used for sensing. Karen Chupka, CES senior vice president, says: "Sensor technologies are changing the way we use our tech devices and empowering us to use motion technology tools in new, more personalized ways for gaming, health and fitness monitoring, security systems and more."
Chupka appeared in London this week at the annual CES Unveiled event, along with chief executive Gary Shapiro and research director Shawn DuBravac.
DuBravac provided some research into the UK market for technology products. The figures show that in terms of personal/household ownership, tablets (43 percent) are still behind desktop PCs (60 percent), smartphones (77 percent) and laptops (83 percent), though presumably they will reach that level of adoption soon. As tablets become obsolete faster than PCs, there should be a few years of rapid sales still to come.
Looking at devices UK adults intend to purchase, the smartphone is the top product for households that already have one (40 percent) and households that don't (35 percent). However, more households intend to purchase a new laptop than a new tablet in the next 12 months. For households that already have these devices, the laptop leads by 21 percent to 19 percent, and in households that don't, by 23 percent to 20 percent. However, this is only the replacement rate needed for a product that lasts 4 or 5 years.
UK adults are mainly buying technology to keep themselves entertained (51 percent) and make life more enjoyable (45 percent), but making an internet connection is also a strong factor (41 percent). Productivity and efficiency are less important, and only 10 percent say they are buying "to assist in my work life".
CES Unveiled also visited Paris this week, before moving on to Tel Aviv on October 7. Presentations will also be given in New York (November 12) and Las Vegas (January 5, 2014).