The future is now

The future is now

2018 tech innovations show the future is already here.

Evidence that the future is already upon us was on clear display at the latest edition of the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES).

Held in Las Vegas Jan. 9-12, the world’s tech giants showcased some of the most startling developments yet in Artificial Intelligence, Virtual Reality, and personal health gadgets.

Based on the marvels unveiled at the event, 2018 promises to be another exciting year for the industry as technology that assists us in everyday tasks, enriches our personal entertainment and learning experience, and even helps cure minor physical and psychological ills grows more sophisticated and yet accessible.

Among the highlights at CES 2018 were a new 49-qubit computer chip announced by Intel, a 400-mile range electric car under development by Fisker, and competing upgrades of an item that may have much greater near-term appeal to the average consumer: Home Assistant devices.

The Home Assistant may well be the next indispensable electronic device to transform our lives.

Just when we thought our smartphones, tablets, and laptops could do everything for us, Home Assistants such as the Amazon Echo, Google Home, and Samsung Bixby offer an all-in-one user interface that upon voice command can do everything from requesting an Uber ride to reading you a bedtime story.

On the gaming and entertainment front, virtual reality devices that included not only visual and audio experiences, but also touch and physical sensations were present courtesy of Irish company Design Partners whose award-winning “smart glove” is already being hailed as a milestone in the field.

Personal health gadgets also featured heavily, including a Philips wearable headband to improve sleep, a new battery-free skin sensor capable of detecting ultraviolet sun rays courtesy of L’Oréal, and fascinatingly, a mouthguard to detect concussions currently under development by the Minneapolis-based Prevent Biometrics, a revolutionary firm that specializes in concussion impact monitoring technology.

Yet be warned. The CES has taken place annually since 1967 and plenty of eye-catching gadgets that have debuted there (does anyone actually remember Apple’s Pippin games console or Microsoft’s SPOT Smart Watch?) have long been consigned to the trash can of history. Put simply, as incredible as many of these inventions are, the future is still unwritten, and the real test, as always, will be consumer choice.


About the Author:

Paul Imison
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