CES – the personalisation of technology

    NPD's Vince Moy takes a look at some of the key takeaways from this year's CES trade show in Las Vegas.


    CES – the personalisation of technology

    NPD’s Vince Moy takes a look at some of the key takeaways from this year’s CES trade show in Las Vegas.

    CES: the industry’s annual arms race to wow the eyes and ears of the technology press, pushing the envelope of "make it because I can".

    Veterans of this superlative event have come to expect the escalation of bigger/brighter/louder to stand out, even in the perennial host city of excess, Las Vegas. Yet, amidst all this spectacle, some of the most buzzworthy announcements had more to do with technology becoming personal and intimate, and less to do with flashy show-and-tell.

    Wearable tech for individual needs

    Next gen Fitbit devices and smartwatches proliferated this year, along with sensor-infused garments designed to provide bio-feedback to their wearers. By design, these tech wearables help fulfil individual health goals as they measure steps, calories, body temperature and heart rates. However, consumer choices are quickly evolving beyond the basic options of colour and style as access to email, music control and eventually video will satisfy needs for personal content as well.

    Content providers have a strong history of leveraging technology to satisfy individual entertainment needs in the post mass-media era. Curated internet radio icons Pandora and Spotify, single TV episode downloads and user-generated YouTube posts are the definition of personalised, DIY entertainment that have quickly become the norm. Getting customised content in wearable tech is a logical progression of this dynamic.

    The connected home and personal space

    The convergence of technology and a ‘smart’ home environment will optimise consumers’ individual needs where it matters most. From Lowe’s Iris home alarm system to Samsung’s temperature and appliances controls, a variety of utility benefits are already poised to respond with personalised attention.
    But the possibility for automated, personalised entertainment is even more exciting. Imagine a world with wearable tech that triggers a favourite musical playlist when entering a room, turns on the TV when the big game is about to start, or alerts that a movie that you pre-paid for is now available in the cloud.
    Customised, situational entertainment based on who’s at home will be too good to pass up.

    The proposition of wearable-triggered, curated content at home promises to be an exciting future; let’s hope that consumer electronics manufacturers, content providers and digital platforms can work together to make this vision of personalised technology a reality.

    This blog has been adapted from a post that originally appeared on the NPD website. Click here to read the original post.

    Vince Moy is the Industry Analyst for NPD’s Entertainment practice.