January’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES), which will take place in Las Vegas, Nevada, will offer attendees a glimpse at the immediate digital future. So, what will be the key focus areas at next year’s event?
Connected cars: At least nine major automotive manufacturers will be present at the show with Audi, Volkswagen, BMW and Aston Martin all expected to unveil concepts. VW's Passenger Cars Chairman Herbert Diess will give the keynote speech at CES, where he'll be introducing a new electric concept car.
Cyber security: For the first time CES will host a cyber technology forum looking at the major threats and challenges surrounding several new technologies.
Drones: Exhibitors of unmanned systems at CES are growing rapidly, with the ability of drone products advancing in the areas of photography, video recording, measurement and navigation. And, with companies like Amazon and Google planning to use drones for distribution and delivery, drones are set to reach new heights in 2016.
This year, there will also be a drone policy and conference, discussing the realities of drone flight - including rules for airspace safety and how to account for privacy.
Wearables: Moving beyond the fitness sphere, wearables (which include jewellery and embedded clothing), are transforming health, parenting and fashion. The wearables marketplace on the CES 2016 showfloor has apparently more than trebled since last year.
Virtual and augmented reality: 2016 has already been branded the year of VR. Technology giants from Samsung to Facebook and Sony will launch their headsets; Samsung’s Gear VR launched for mobile last month, while the simple £10.00 Google Cardboard can also give you basic VR experiences on your phone.
More than 40 exhibitors, including Oculus Rift, will showcase the next wave of immersive multimedia for virtual reality systems and environments, along with gaming hardware.
IoT: Gartner predicts over 50 billion connected devices globally by 2020. And, the range of objects being connected to the internet is expanding - everything from the locks on our doors to our office lighting, fleets of delivery trucks and our city streets.