If you want to feel old then think about how much closer 2017 is to 2020 than 2016, or visit Las Vegas every January for 10 years in a row. That's exactly what I've done, spending what feels like a third of my life at the consumer electronics show (CES).
The latest installment, CES 2016, just finished this weekend, and thousands of companies will already be preparing for the 359 days ahead until CES 2017. It never ends.
For the rest of us, the next 359 days will be a chance to witness innovation or iteration in technology, or perhaps a combination of both. CES 2016 wasn't groundbreaking, and it passed by without any major product announcements. It's hard to believe that it has been three years since the Oculus Rift stole the show, but during that time we haven't seen any world-changing gadgets at the same scale.
CES 2016 wasn't groundbreaking
So what does CES 2016 mean for the rest of the year? It's hard to predict exactly what we'll see in 2016, but it's easy to imagine there will be a lot of iteration and consolidation. Companies appear to be playing it safe this year with modest updates to existing products, and no big bets on what the future truly holds.
The living room was supposed to be the center of our digital life, and then that switched to the smartphone. Now, the Internet of Things promises to connect everything together, but it needs years to fully develop. What, if anything, will replace the smartphone? Nobody had the answer to that at CES 2016, just a bunch of products that rely on a smartphone. We've got 359 days until the show starts again, and we attempt to navigate the future of technology. Let the hype begin.
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