The largest technology tradeshow of the year, the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, is happening this week. Since it is right at the beginning of 2016, CES is where we get our first look at some of the technology trends you’ll hear about for the rest of the year. Here are some that I am looking forward to:
“Smart” devices everywhere
Most people these days have smartphones, sure, but what about a smart house? A smart wristwatch? Smart clothing? As processors get smaller, faster, and more efficient, technology companies are able to put them in darn near anything these days. Home appliances and other home-based smart devices are going to be the fastest growing. Smart home devices can be anything from a thermostat that learns your schedule, lights that auto-dim and can change colors, even to a washing machine that sends you a message on your phone that it’s time to switch loads!
Future cars today
The industry that has the possibility of changing the most over the next five years is the auto industry. There are already plenty of cars with things like voice control, OnStar, or TV screens for passengers, but in 2016 auto manufacturers will begin to partner with Microsoft, Apple, and Google to make their vehicles even more technologically advanced. Google and Apple are experimenting with self-driving cars, and Microsoft has a goal of bringing your living room or office to your vehicle. Internet-connected cars will become cheaper and more available, and the tech in these cars will make them safer, more efficient, and also more fun!
Entertainment tech’s big leap forward becoming more affordable
Many of last year’s “bleeding edge” technologies in the entertainment world are a year older now. This is great news for the average person, because now these technologies cost much less. The most mainstream now are 4K televisions. If you did any holiday shopping at all, I am sure that you saw advertisements for them this winter. 4K televisions have a resolution that is four times higher than 1080p. When they were first released, the big knock against them was that there was not much content that was available in 4K resolution. Now in 2016, many streaming video services like Netflix, Hulu Plus, Amazon Prime, and HBO Go will all stream 4K. Blu-ray players capable of 4K playback are also now available. Couple that with a huge drop in price (you can get a 55” 4K TV for less than $800 now), it might be time to upgrade to a 4K television (or computer monitor, for that matter!)
What are some other technology trends that you are excited about? Are there any that I mentioned that you would like to learn more about?