The annual Consumer Electronics Show, when tech companies gather in Las Vegas to show off their biggest, boldest ideas of the year, is set to open the second week of January. The show has lost some of its cachet in recent years, particularly with former headliner Microsoft opting to stop its traditional keynotes. But it is still a key place to see what smartphone makers, television companies and automakers are forecasting for the future of technology. Here are five trends to watch at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show.
Connected cars: Audi, Chrysler, Ford, General Motors, Hyundai, Kia and Subaru are among the top automakers making appearances at this year’s show.
“Cars are becoming rolling computers,”said Tom Coughlin, a consumer electronics consultant and member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. It’s not simply that cars are becoming more technologically advanced, with richer sensors and better data, he said, but they’re also working more closely with existing gadgets that consumers are already carrying. “Cars are a mobile application platform; let’s start configuring them in the way I want them to be.”