CES 2017: Look But Don’t Touch

CES 2017: Look But Don’t Touch

Just got back from a jag out in Vegas covering CES 2017.  I went there expecting to be wowed by the latest technology.  Robots!  AI!  VR! But what I found was a giant crowded mall with drones I’ve seen before, some cameras I’ve seen before and a ton of people staring into virtual place on Samsung VR devices.

We stayed at The Westin just off the Vegas Strip and made the trek each morning to The Las Vegas Convention Center where thousands of people waited to see the latest in technology.  I was excited to try out some of DJI’s drones but, despite the safety netting around the drones, no one was allowed to try them out due to Convention Center regulations.

One of the more ingenious displays at CES was the Nikon display called Project Helix.  A bunch of Nikon cams snapped a photo in a circle to create a bullet time effect.  Users submitted their email to receive a gif of the effect. Nikon must have gotten thousands of contacts for their email list that day.  It was an ingenious and interactive display in a convention bereft of them.  I filmed Danny Berk as he tried out Project Helix and here’s how that went.

Some of the displays in the automotive section were amazing though.  The Toyota Concept and Ford’s sensor and Alexa technologies were some of the highlights of the show.

All told, the show really needed some more interactive elements.  The VR companies, Nikon and the automotive industries did a good job of trying to cater their displays to providing a good user experience.  But a lot of the booths acted as rudimentary displays of products with little to no interactivity.