2014 International CES Preview

January 4, 2014

The 2014 International Consumer Electronic Show (CES) is upon us. It takes place next week and I’m very excited to be attending the show to meet with some of our amazing Control4 dealers. I’m also going to sneak in some time to walk the show floor again this year and see what the latest trends and innovations are in the consumer technology world. I’ll be writing a couple of posts about the coolest and most interesting gadgets I see there.
Leading up to this year’s show I’ve been paying close attention to the rumors about new products and technology, and here is what I’m expecting we’ll see or hear buzz about at 2014 CES.
4K TV’s become affordable and commonplace
Last year at CES we saw the majority of TV manufacturers embrace 4K (Ultra HD) technology. For those who haven’t heard, 4K provides a resolution that is four times better than the current HD format. While the technology is impressive, the price tag has been equally impressive. At CES I think we’ll start to see several 4K TV sets introduced that are much more affordable, and in the coming year we’ll begin to see many more of these TVs purchased by the average consumer.
However, there still hasn’t been a truly viable content delivery system introduced yet for the 4K content, which would deliver movies and television shows in 4K resolution to 4K TVs. So it’ll be interesting to see if anyone launches a device that can deliver that content to the average household.
Wearable technology
Apple’s rumored “iWatch” certainly won’t be unveiled at this year’s CES but you can count on several other companies introducing some form of wearable technology. This is a category I’ve been very interested in lately as I’ve been looking to pick up a fitness tracker, and CES should provide a good opportunity to see what is really out there and what to look forward to this year.
Wearable technology certainly isn’t just limited to the wrist however. There should be plenty of products looking to compete with Google Glass and other head-mounted displays. And there are even programmable LED t-shirts now as well. Wearable electronics are going to make a big splash in 2014.
Internet connected devices
Not only will 2014 usher in an era of devices we wear that are constantly connected to us, but those same devices will also be connected to the world wide web. And it won’t just be devices that we wear, but all electronic devices that we use in our daily lives. Our watches, thermostats, cars, appliances, even smoke detectors, are becoming connected devices.
There is certainly some concern that our lives are becoming too connected, but that concern won’t stop manufacturers from creating devices that are constantly connected to the “Internet of Things.” Why? Because when these disparate devices all become connected, the power of each multiplies significantly. When all devices become connected through the Internet, wild things can happen—your watch is able to change your TV channel or your car can signal your house lights to turn on as soon as you pull onto your street. With Control4 home automation you can already do a lot of these things and adding additional devices to the “Internet of Things” will only improve upon the Control4 automation experience. I’m very excited to see which devices will have potential to work with my Control4 home automation system.
These are my guesses for the hottest trends of 2014 CES but it’ll be fun to attend the show and see what really pans out. Control4 will also have a presence at the show. We will have a showroom with some demos setup in Summit Room at the Renaissance hotel, right next door to the Las Vegas Convention Center. So if you are at CES, be sure to stop by and see us to learn about some of our latest innovations in home automation.