The second annual CES AsiaTM kicked off yesterday with more than 375 global companies introducing the latest technology innovation to the growing Asian market. Owned and produced by the Consumer Technology Association (CTA)TM, and co-produced by Intex Shanghai, CES Asia 2016, Asia’s premier technology event, runs through Friday, May 13, at the Shanghai New International Expo Centre (SNEIC) and Kerry Hotel (Kerry).
Led by China, the Asian market is one of the fastest growing markets on the planet, and we’re here to bring the global consumer tech ecosystem together in Asia,” said Gary Shapiro, president and CEO, Consumer Technology Association, during the show’s welcome address. “CES Asia is the place where companies can brand and launch their new products to the Asian market and the region’s platform to learn about technologies across various industries. The products we see on the show floor this week will move us more safely, keep us healthy, improve our agriculture, reduce hunger and connect, educate and entertain us.”
The CES Asia 2016 keynote stage features leaders from some of the world’s top brands, including Huawei, Wanda Cinema Line and Legendary Pictures and Intel all taking the keynote stage yesterday; BMW this morning.
Shapiro’s address celebrated the massive wave of innovation in consumer tech being driven by widespread broadband and low cost sensors. “These innovations promise to improve our world and the human condition,” said Shapiro. He then introduced Kevin Ho, president of Handset Product Design at Huawei Device, who predicted there will be a huge acceleration in technology development over the next 25 years, particularly in the areas of connectivity, personal technology and security. He envisions advancements in and the integration of these areas to lead to a digital world parallel with our physical society. “As computing power continues to increase,” Ho said, “the digital world will learn from analytics and develop ubiquitous intelligence.” Ho also revealed that Huawei will be investing more in innovation. Currently, 45 percent of its workforce is focused on research and development. The company is considering building ecosystems focused on the consumer experience, and looking at alliances and partnerships to achieve end-to-end solutions.
The Wanda Cinema Line and Legendary Pictures keynote touched upon technology’s influence on the creation and consumption of films in China. John Zeng, president of Wanda Cinema Line, foresees an increase of 600-700 higher quality films in the future because of technology advancements. Zeng predicts that in the next 10 years, the proportion of cinemas in China will grow to be similar to the U.S. Wanda Cinema Line and Legendary Pictures will work together to produce more diverse, high-quality films. Peter Loehr, CEO, Legendary East envisions more film co-operations in the future, especially between China and the U.S. This could lead to changes in film distribution regulations and foreign film policies, Loehr noted.
Intel’s keynote opened with a show from a master wushu, martial arts practitioner, using wearable technology to connect the physical and digital world in creative new ways. Intel’s Senior Vice President and General Manager, New Technology Group, Josh Walden then took the stage to discuss how Intel is driving the future of consumer technology. “It’s no longer about the device or product – it’s about what experience is being made for me, [the user]. Consumers are demanding better and better experiences.” Walden focused on the three key areas where Intel is driving innovation: gaming; health and wellness; and creativity.
Echoing Walden’s views, Olaf Kastner, president and CEO, BMW Group Greater China, stressed the importance of staying competitive and attractive to customers in a changing world in his keynote address. “In order to predict the future, you have to shape or create it,” Kastner said. For autonomous driving to become reality, drivers need to have complete control (of the car), and manufacturers need to ensure that legal, moral, and ethical principles are clearly defined and adhered to. Celebrating its 100th anniversary at CES Asia, BMW also unveiled its ‘iFuture Concept car’ to the Asian market at the keynote address and detailed three changes for the future of the automated driving industry – digitalization, highly automated driving and sustainability.
The CES Asia Conference Program features more than 50 eminent speakers, 100 sessions and topics covering the spectrum of consumer technology, including the latest market research trends.
During the 2016 Tech Trends to Watch session, Dr. Shawn DuBravac, chief economist and senior director of research, CTA, highlighted three tech trends that, as evidenced by exhibits on the show floor, will be a major focus in 2016. DuBravac noted that autonomous vehicles will continue to be a key area of innovation and growth, with further digitization of the automotive environment and full customization of vehicles. “Virtual reality also is here to stay,” said DuBravac, with global sales expected to increase by 500 percent in 2016 and then double in 2017. This, coupled with the shifting mobile paradigm, will continue to blur both online and offline experiences, allowing for more daily activities to be engaged on the Internet.”
DuBravac shared the stage with Alfred Zhou, managing director, GFK Retail and Technology Co. Ltd. in The Outlook for China and the U.S. session where DuBravac pointed out that “the smartphone remains the best-selling consumer tech item in the U.S.” This is similar to China, Zhou noted, where “mobile-savvy consumers are changing the country’s retail scene.” Zhou also shared that new products boom online first and are the key generators for market growth in China.
On the show floor, eleven products pre-voted by media in New York, competed for the title of “most likely to change the face of technology” at Wednesday afternoon’s Last Gadget Standing competition. Competitors ranging from smart home devices to drone manufacturers demonstrated their features on the N4 Stage in SNIEC, Hall N4. This year’s winner, as voted by CES Asia attendees, was Horizon Pilot, an augmented reality projection that displays in-depth trip details on the vehicle windshield.
More than 375 global companies are exhibiting at CES Asia 2016, up from 212 in 2015. Since last year’s inaugural event, CES Asia has expanded from two to four exhibit halls with a show floor spanning 32,000 gross square meters (16,000 net square meters). Exhibiting brands include 3M, China Mobile IoT, Cobra Electronics, Continental Automotive, Gibson Brands, Hisense, IBM, Monster, OnStar/Chevrolet and Voxx.