Welcome to the new year! We have been through generations of technology cycles with many of you. Perhaps you were one of the few who nostalgically looked at old Nakamichi cassette brochures.
The technology industry just completed its annual pilgrimage to Las Vegas to experience the future… much of this bloated, massive show has not changed, like taxi lines and $288 dollar-per-night Motel 6 prices. We saw full-size $500 K+ John Deere self-driving, self-harvesting smart combines, 8K TVs everywhere, insane speakers, folding phones, modular laptops, and flat-screen displays you could roll up and fit into a tube. Really!!
Oh, we weren’t kidding! Farmers can drop 500 large on one of these, boost production, and have their kids do something else instead of driving the combine when they’re home from college next summer!
But as your technology partner, we are here to distill all that happened, both spectacular – and inane. So, if you heard or have questions, we are here to help and offer practical advice and wise council.
First, Some CES Numbers:
A) Number of Exhibitors: 4,500+
B) Number of Attendees 180,000+
C) Media organizations 6500+
D) Countries represented 150
E) Miles we walked, in 3 days 26 (if we believe our apple watch)
F) Square footage of exhibit space 2,000,000+
G) And a whole load of other mind boggling data, (mostly useless 🙂
TV’s and Displays
The video category continues to evolve. Didn’t see one TV that was not “smart” nor less resolution than 4K. On the size and tech front, we see 3 distinctive and different trends emerge:
Size, Samsung was showing their newest 219 inch offering, Yes, it was impressive, but would NOT fit through most front or sliding doors, and nor into any of our current vehicles. It’s HUGE, not to mention it comes a giant crate that’s even larger. So, the size barriers continue to expand and impress.
Yes, that IS a TV!!
The emergence of the “video-wall” from the commercial and industrial arenas, let you put multiple images on a display (March Madness, anyone?) or have them each display parts of a single, large image. These walls can be massive, and are assembled like snapped together Legos. How big do you want the video wall for your new man cave??
They can be aggregated into countless configurations. Typically sold by the “unit” – these are rectangle assemblies which vary in size, and interlock with others, connect to a frame to form the desired size and shape, like the large video boards at stadiums, arenas and your favorite sports bar.
If you’re considering your very own sports bar in the basement, let the imagination running wild begin!
Projection systems, greater accuracies, leveraging lasers as the light source, increased stability, and longevity are deepening across the board. Laser light sources last practically forever, or 30,000+ hours, whichever comes first. Forget your projector lamp dying just as your Super Bowl party guests arrive.
The only other factors on the display front are the usual, confusing scrabble of terms, letters and offerings like:
*) OLED, or “Organic Light Emitting Diode” pronounced “Oh-led”
*) QLED, or “Quantum Light Emitting Diode” pronounced “ Q. L. E. D.” Some guys call them “Quantum Dots”
*) 8K, offering twice the perceived resolution of 4K
*) LED Array this is technology that utilizes a more consistent and even image intensity across the entire surface of the display.
If you see, hear, or read about some intriguing details, or are looking to upgrade or add some of these cool next gen units to your system, call or text us for a brief chat, and we’ll clearly detail all the pro’s, con’s, benefits and applications of each with you.
AUDIO, and the AVR (surround receiver/amplifier)
The AV receiver packs a great many things into the 17” wide, 6” high black box it calls home. It’s an Internet radio/streaming media tuner, surround processor, multi-channel amplifier, signal management switch and video processor. They’ve gone through some significant logarithmic complexity evolutions over the last season or two.
Perhaps you have heard about the next HDMI standard; how that could affect some of the streaming and content options, or some of the vertical sound-staging standards – look, we have all the slick information on why this stuff is cool, but again, just call with any questions or inquiries.
Bio-Tech, and The just Plain Weird:
Seems one of the new fronts for tech invasion is the bathroom and John Crapper’s invention, the flush toilet. There were actually more than a dozen companies showing prototypes in this category, most just a regular toilet, some having a bidet built in, connecting installed speakers via Alexa voice assistant, some pricing descriptions went above ten grand. The one we liked:
The Toto Neorest NX: This intelligent toilet from plumbing giant Toto is a CES 2019 Innovation Awards Honoree. The toilet features high-tech sensors that can automatically open and close the lid and flush the water. There’s a personal cleansing system integrated into the device that uses warm water, an air dryer, heated seat, and in-bowl deodorizer.
The smart bra? A major intimate apparel company was showing a $59 bra that measured for proper fit and comfort and would recommend optimum fitting sizes, and possible models via a Bluetooth app to your Android or Apple device. We’re not kidding!
Here is a prototype for Uber from the Bell helicopter folks meant to be an un-piloted air taxi, not much information or specs yet but the booth folks were talking about production in the 2020’s.
Computing Power (x50)
IBM Q-Bit 50 Quantum (Above) Viewed from the isle of a major technology trade show, this looked like some kind of 80’s lux hotel entryway chandelier. Sophisticated cabling, strange cooling pipes fresh from the chrome shop, milled steel truss-work, and of course those three iconic letters “IBM”.
The company continues to make major headway and breakthroughs in computational quantum power… it’s not time to start thinking about using this to craft your next power-point or gain an edge on your gaming rivals, but it’s yet another example of processor speed records being broken often.
At the end of this technology expedition, is you, our friends and clients; the vary reason we go through experiences like CES. We constantly hone our edge, and keep up with all the technology verticals that make smart living helpful, stable and fun. If you are curious, give us a call or email and we’ll clarify, explain and chat about how these could augment and help you too.
Contact Us Now and we can discuss how to make your home entertainment be more, well, entertaining than ever.