Trend Whisperer, A blog by Sherri Scheck-Merrill
The chaotic Consumer Electronics Show (CES 2014), kicked off this past week in Las Vegas and the world is closely watching to get a glimpse of “the future” for technology. This year 20,000 products are being introduced at the tech industry gadget-fest!
I discovered aisles jammed with the continuation of wearable technology (for humans “and” pets) and fitness tracking products as the trend of of knowing how many steps we’ve taken or calories we’ve burned continues.
The “connected home” aka, Home Smart Home, is generating a huge amount of interest. Research firm Parks Associates disclosed a prediction that in 2017 more than 11 million U.S. broadband households will have a smart home “controller” – up from two million in 2013.
On the flip side, get prepared for the return of hydrogen-powered cars and the convenience of recharging a device by simply dropping it into a bowl.
Following is a rundown of several product intros and breakthroughs, deemed the show’s top
contenders. They’re grabbing a majority of the headlines this week and more than likely, will continue to do so after the show.
-Massive curved HDTV’s by current TV and smart phone darling-of-the-moment, Samsung, will excite home theater fans. Displays will emulate a 3D IMAX-like experience without the need of 3D glasses, boast four times the resolution of current models and besides a show-stopping 105-inch display, in the future will introduce smaller 55” models.
-Tired of waiting for your significant other to get things done? The robot is here!
-Sony’s waterproof XperiaZ phone that performs camera tricks such as background refocus that enables you to focus on an object of a scene while blurring the background or shooting a business card and the captured information can be saved directly to your contacts.
-A smart lock by Goji that provides a smart way to figure out who’s knocking at your door via a text or email with digital photo of the person.
-A solar power phone case for iPhones and Samsung Galaxies which charges where the sun shines.
-A new startup, Arrayent (which received $11.9 million in funding), is using the power of the cloud and virtualization to connect appliances. Imagine using a smartphone app to dial back the cooking at home to simmer before leaving the office.
-SimpliciKey showed off upgrades to wireless deadbolts you can operate from your smartphone.
-Get ready for “Smart Earbuds” with integrated fitness tracking sensors.
-Smart bluetooth headsets are on the horizon with an integrated Siri-like personal assistant.
-An egg crate that wirelessly tells it’s owner how many eggs are left in the fridge and how fresh they are.
-As mentioned earlier, a “smart bowl” that can wirelessly charge devices placed inside.
-Designers will be delighted with invisible wireless speakers boasting an aesthetically pleasing appearance, from ClearView.
-3D printers will be deemed a common home product in the next few years.
-Voyce unleashed wearable tech bands for dogs that monitor heart and respiratory rates, calories burned and other key vitals, to serve as an early warning system for the owner or vet.
-Toyota is serious about hydrogen fuel cell power as it simultaneously solves issues related to an electric car’s range and charging time.
-Cars that do things on their own such as take over the driving. They’ll warn you of lane changes or tell you you’re falling asleep.
In closing, there are all sorts of things, ideas and trends gearing up to be game changers that eventually will affect all of us!
2014 is indeed the year of change!
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Sherri Scheck-Merrill is a hospitality industry professional with a passion for excellent hotels and resorts. She is passionate about hotels, interior design, fashion, and beauty. As Vice President of Amenity Services Inc., she focuses on hotel business development and guestroom product design. She distinguishes herself by researching, teaching and reporting U.S. trends for her own fashion and export business.
She is a three-time nominee for Businesswoman of the Year by California’s Orange County Business Journal. A UNLV student-athlete/Harvard Executive Education Consumer Marketing graduate, she licenses popular retail brands for hotel guestrooms.
After spending several years on a tennis court, followed by the role of head buyer at the largest West Coast-based sporting goods and fashion apparel export company, her knack for predicting trends landed her a columnist position at Orange Coast Magazine. She is also the author of the biannual trend-forecasting report for a major retailer in Osaka, Japan, and writes a popular blog about trends for Hotels – the magazine of the worldwide hotel industry.