CES 2019: Everything is Connected, Nothing is Integrated

Cole from our partner Whipsaw (left) & Casey from Josh.ai (right)

Here at Josh.ai, our team is always on the lookout for innovative technologies that will transform the smart home experience. With that passion in mind, I had a chance to attend my first Consumer Electronics Show to see what is on the horizon for the Custom Integration and Do It Yourself markets. Aside from meetings and events, it was thought-provoking to see that every industry is embracing the Internet of Things. I cannot tell you how many “Smart Home” or “AI” banners I was wading through!

From my perspective, a connected lifestyle is certainly the future across many verticals to make our lives more efficient. At the same time, it also raises questions about the sensitivity of user data and the morality of developing tech that will result in humanity’s over-reliance on it. Here is what impressed and interested me the most at a crazy couple of days in Las Vegas.

Most Applicable to the CEDIA Channel:

LG curved display

8K was everywhere and is going to transform how we consume content! Sony and LG had particularly impressive displays from a clarity as well as resolution perspectives. One of the most fascinating things I saw was the curved display from LG assembled to mimic the natural landscape of the waves and mountains flashing across its screen. Beyond being a jaw-dropper, it showcased that the entertainment space is expanding beyond even frame or mirror televisions to truly blend into your surroundings. The same could be said for their wheeled-display. I am sure we will see both sooner or later in a particularly eccentric client’s home.

Assistants

From left to right: Stephen (Josh.ai), Chase (Houston Media Systems), Donnie (Houston Media Systems), Jaclyn (Houston Media Systems), Casey (Josh.ai)

A portion of the show that was particularly interesting was the focus on virtual assistants. Amazon Alexa, Google Home, and Samsung’s Bixby had monstrous experience areas with “day in the life” demos.

The common theme I came away with was that everything was extremely controlled and closed off within these companies ecosystems of devices. This is a great business strategy to hook users on brand loyalty, Apple has been doing it for years, however it illustrates a challenge that our team faces on a daily basis. Our partners and projects demand a robust set of home automation features across a range of preferred brands. It will be difficult for our industry, and connected homes going forward, to rely on one brand due to the power of consumer choice.

Coolest Technology:

The Mercedes EQ Silver Arrow was a showstopper, and I want it!

Maybe it is due to being surrounded by traffic in Los Angeles, however I was amazed by the strides being made in the electric automotive industry. Beyond that, the prototypes and alternatives to traditional transportation were awe-inspiring. Whether it was pods for smart cities or single-seated delivery carts there are a lot of players entering the automotive evolution.

Schaeffler Technologies smart city Bio-Hybrid

Also, the Bell Nexus air taxi gets a special shout out for being my real solution to traffic!

Bell Nexus Air Taxi

Most Out There Technology

Marvoto Technology Fetus Camera in Start-Up alley

This is a toss up between Marvoto Technology’s fetus camera and the BeeLife Cocoon. However, both fulfill a need for families looking to become pregnant and endangered bees respectively. Both of these companies illustrate that every challenge has the potential to be a solved through software.

Worthy recipient — BeeLife CoCoon won a Best of Innovation Award!

Takeaways

Use the Josh app or Micro to control all of your home’s devices through touch, voice, or machine learning!

Like any convention, it is always great to network with current partners and put names to faces for prospective ones. Although there was plenty of replicated technology and items that were not applicable for us, it was still a constructive couple of days checking out some fantastic technology. If anything, what I saw reinforced the need for one intuitive and easy to use user interface that works across brands. Whether that is through touch, voice, or machine learning.

If we did not have a chance to connect or you are going to be in Las Vegas next month for KBIS reach out to sales@josh.ai and we would be happy to connect.

Casey is a member of the Josh.ai Business Development team. Originally from the San Francisco Bay Area, Casey graduated from the University of Southern California with a degree in Business Administration. A former collegiate athlete, he enjoys staying active and going on new adventures.

Josh.ai is an artificial intelligence agent for your home. If you’re interested in learning more, visit us at https://josh.ai.

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