CES 2022 - Getty Images

Vehicle technology, artificial intelligence, digital health and smart home tech were among the focal points on opening day of the 2022 Consumer Electronics Show Wednesday, taking place across the internet and in Las Vegas through Friday. While the crowds were thinner and there were fewer things to see as some exhibitors stayed home and exhibited virtually, the sense of wonderment that defines CES remained alive and well.

“There aren't as many things to see but the engagement is richer,” said Jacobs Media President Fred Jacobs after a day of cruising the exhibit floors. “You don't feel like you're in a crowded subway, you can talk to people working these booths and exhibits and actually learn something.”

Making Meetings More Collaborative

Following nearly two years of COVID, much of what is being showcased across the Las Vegas Convention Center is a direct or indirect product of the pandemic. “A lot of the technology has turned inward to our health, to our well-being, to our state of mind, to the experience,” says Jacobs. Much of the convention center’s North Hall is devoted to products designed to promote a better night’s sleep or to make a workforce more productive. Klaxoon, a suite of next-gen management tools that turns meetings into more collaborative workshops, holds potential for radio. “It multi-dimensionalizes meetings with whatever you're using, whether a whiteboard or PowerPoint,” Jacobs says. “The whole idea is to get everybody on the team on the same page participating, weighing in – not like a lot of Zoom calls that many of us get stuck in.”

The annual mecca to Las Vegas to gain a glimpse into the future of tech trends also offered some new advertising and marketing concepts. Korean billboard company ADDB introduced outdoor signage that uses cameras to measure impressions and engagement. Add in AI and the company claims its outdoor displays can gather demographic info from viewers.

AR That Brings Your Logo To Life

The use of QR codes was inescapable at CES 2022, including ones used by 3D Happy AR, which employs augmented reality to activate artwork and bring it to life. “You scan the QR code and then you point your phone at the station logo or the station bumper sticker, and through AR, it comes alive,” Jacobs explains.

BMW showcased its color-changing paint technology which uses E Ink, the electronic paper technology used in e-readers, and the old Pebble watch, according to The Verge. Moen launched a smart faucet with motion control that responds to a wave of the hand to start and stop the flow of water or to control the temperature. Las Vegas Motor Speedway hosted a race car challenge featuring driverless race cars that can hit speeds of nearly 260 kilometers per hour. John Deere unveiled a self-driving tractor that allows farmers to control and monitor the rig via a smartphone app.

“Smart motorcycle helmets, smart baby bottles, smart showers – everything now is a combination of AI and mobile apps,” Jacobs observes. “Things that monitor what's going on in your life, whether it's how long your shower is or your ride to work.

Robots That Fetch Food

Robots do more than vacuum at CES 2022. The Retriever from Labrador Systems is shaped like a nightstand and uses retractable arms to slide food out from a fridge and deliver it to you on the couch.

Linklet, a neck-worn device for live streaming and video could make pedestrian Zoom calls a thing of the past. The hand-free device shows the other person what you’re looking at, enabling demonstrations or lessons to take place virtually.

“At CES 2022 this week, we will be immersed in the innovation that will reshape our societies and solve fundamental human challenges in the decades to come,” said Gary Shapiro, president and CEO, CTA during his Wednesday State of the Industry Address. “With innovations in AI, digital health, transportation, drones, smart cities, digital assets, space tech and more – these technologies are making us better – improving what we as human beings are capable of doing.”

The U.S. consumer technology industry is projected to generate over $505 billion in retail sales revenue for the first time ever in 2022. The projection represents a 2.8% revenue increase from 2021’s 9.6% growth over 2020. Strong demand for smartphones, automotive tech, health devices and streaming services will help propel much of the projected revenue. And in an encouraging signal for one of radio’s biggest ad categories, CTA says automotive technology sales are expected to rebound in 2022 as we begin to see early signs of recovery in chip supplies.