If you’re a tech or experiential fanatic, I’m certain you’ve seen the countless articles talking about trends and what’s next. Well, here it is! AI, 5G, 8k, robots…lots of robots.
Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, I’d like to share some of my favorite moments from CES 2019 – the biggest show that unveils the latest and greatest technology innovations.
First off, when I’m walking around most shows – especially CES – I like to see how companies present themselves as a whole, including how different elements of the brand stand out.
The list that follows is a little bit of everything that wowed me: Some big, some small, some you have never heard of (in no particular order):
1. Use of color: Polaroid
In a sea of LEDs, whites, blacks and bland, Polaroid did an excellent job of bringing their space to life with vibrant colors throughout. The space immediately drew my eye and made me want to check out their products.
2. Individual element: LG
LG’s monitor wave entrance was my favorite individual element of the show – even though it was massive! The 8k resolution with the content they used was breathtaking and made you feel like you were in the middle of the ocean trying to catch the surf (which I definitely can’t do, so it was especially fun to immerse myself within their entrance).
3. Product demo: Osram
So often I go to shows and see tired PowerPoint demos that can easily be done in a conference room at either your office or your client’s. What I loved about Osram’s space, is they created custom demos to show off their robust line of products. It wasn’t just about using the touch screens to read about their product. You had to physically move a miniature car into positions as well as around the screen to get the full effect of their offering. It was the interactivity of their demo that drew me to their space in the first place.
4. Accent: Kohler ceiling
The products Kohler is bringing to the market are remarkable on their own. The fact that you can program your shower or bathtub to start at certain times, at certain temperatures, without lifting a finger is pretty amazing. And their demos were on point. But what really caught my eye were the details around the space to create a certain atmosphere or vibe. They had dimly lit ceiling panels with an array of designs that really pulled the space together.
5. Technology: Omron
You may not know this, but Omron does not create AI ping pong trainers for the world. But they did create Forpheus, the very skilled robotic ping pong player, to show the advancements they have made in AI. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to take on the challenge (which I surely would have won) but it was fun to watch Forpheus dominate all-comers on the ping pong table!
6. Signage: Hologruf and Jd.com
With Hologruf, this may be cheating since their product is the signage, but I loved the not-Heineken bottle dynamic advertising example they showed as well as their main wall of branding. So far, I don’t believe their products have been used to the max in the other spaces I’ve seen them, but the product has great potential.
In the Jd.com space, there were several elements that stood out to me, but the three level hanging LED signage really caught my eye – along with their AR clothes shopping demo.
7. Unique element: La poste
Yellow is definitely an underutilized brand color yet funny enough, two exhibits in the Sands hall (which were next to each other and with HQ’s in France) used yellow to make their exhibits pop. In La Poste, I particularly loved the tree-like architecture they incorporated into the space. There was nothing quite like this anywhere around CES.
8. Photo op: Nikon
If you didn’t know it yet, pop-up experiences are all the rage. And Nikon played right into the phenomenon by creating a staged pop-up photo op area for people to test out and see the quality of their cameras. Folks could also walk away with a fun photo to share with others or hang at their desk.
9. Message delivery: Allstate
I was curious why Allstate would be at CES. However, the booth staffer explained very well that the future of Allstate will always rely on insurance but with automated driving at its forefront. And with that, it’s more important than ever to diversify. So they used their CES space to show off some of their latest acquisitions/product lines, including identity protection and phone repair services. My favorite part of this booth was the content delivery of their Telematics offering which not only drew the eye with the flip board graphic, but at the end of the messaging, you were able to interact with the flip board and stare at yourself. (And who doesn’t love to see themselves in a black and white/analog style graphic!)
10. Overall experience: HERE
HERE’s overall space was my favorite at the show (but I may be biased since the Jack team created it). The exterior structure with LED screens was eye-catching, drawing you into their space. The product demos were laid out with plenty of space to stand around them – for either a one-on-one demo or one-to-many demo. And they closed it out with a 365-degree view of their product offerings with their 3D City Projection Map demo. Overall, it was beautiful, engaging and immersive. Oh, and I can’t forget to mention their outdoor patio on the second level which I thought was a pretty cool touch. (But for some reason, they wouldn’t let me move in!)
CES continues to be one of the largest shows on the planet, drawing more than 180 thousand industry professionals. And every year, I look forward to joining the crowd and seeing what’s next in technology advancements!