CES 2017 Review: A Showcase Of IoT, Smart Software, And Solid Workhorse Tech

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ANALYSIS: This year’s Consumer Electronic Show indicated the future of hardware and smart system for business as well as pleasure

Driverless cars speeding up 

Volvo driverless carsMuch like last year’s CES, this year played host to driverless car technology.

Intel championed its ambitions to help the development of autonomous cars with the reveal of its GO division, which comes offering automotive companies 5G-ready cloud-connected development platform so they can develop 5G based systems before the new wireless broadband grade is made readily available.

But not to be out done, Nvidia revealed its Xavier supercomputer and a range of expanded partnerships to enable the development and deployment of an artificial intelligence (AI) system called AI Co-Pilot designed to aid drivers as well as learn how they drive in order to accelerate the road to driverless cars.  

“We would like to turn your car into an AI, and that by applying this technology we can revolutionise the automobile and bring joy and delight and safety to millions of people,” said Nvidia’s CEO Jen-Hsun Huang.

While driverless cars remain in development connected cars are all over the roads, to which BlackBerry used CES to reveal its QNX Software Development Platform 7.0, for car makers to create infotainment systems and software on top of, confident in BlackBerry’s cyber security and 64bit embedded operating system to take care of the software foundations. 

The position of Nvidia and BlackBerry is demonstrative of the entwined role the technology industry has in the future of the automotive world.

Ask the assistants 

google-assistantBut cars are also set to gain access to the virtual assistants found in Android and iOS mobile devices, as well as Windows and Amazon’s Echo. 

At CES, BMW and Nissan were revealed to be adopting Microsoft’s Cortana virtual assistant for select models of their future cars; Hyundai said it is going with the Google Assistant, and Ford opted for Amazon’s Alexa. 

Speaking of Alexa, the Huawei Mate 9 flagship smartphone was revealed to be the first to receive access to the virtual assistant that spend 2016 calling the Echo smart speaker its home. 

While voice controlled virtual assistants will make carrying out task in cars easier and safer, and the spread of the smart software beyond their native homes is an opportunity for third-party developers to tap into a wider ecosystem, the big picture is the impact the growth of such assistants will have. 

We are already seeing the rise of bots in enterprise software to take care of arduous tasks so workers can concentrate on more cerebral and pressing concerns, so the logical step it virtual assistants will come to augment the world of business as well as everyday life.

This is less rise of the machine and more the growth of systems and software that make the experience of life at work and home a smoother experience. 

“CES 2017 was a global showcase that demonstrated that we are in a new era of innovation where technology is valued not just for the devices it produces but for the experiences it makes possible,” said Bridget Karlin, managing director of Intel’s IoT division.

Time will tell if the tech showcase of CES 2017 filters down to our everyday life in its entirety but either way it points a future where smart tech is going to embed itself into all aspects of industry and society before too long; you’ll have to decide whether that is a good thing or not.

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