The names of the companies exhibiting at International CES, the world’s biggest consumer technology show are intriguing – in some cases more so than the products that are being displayed.
Meandering around the enormous event at the Las Vegas Convention Centre a few caught my eye.
Dr Bott anyone? Not, as the name might infer, a supplier of remedies for worrying medical ailments, but a maker of ‘lifestyle products’ for Apple gadgets. How about Global Splendid International? You’d think the word ‘global’ encapsulates the firm’s wide-ranging remit without the addition of ‘international’.
All the major electronics companies are here too, showing off bendy tellys and other brilliant gadgets. CES is a tech geek’s dream and in recent years it has quietly taken on increasing significance for the automotive industry.
The car makers want to rub shoulders with the kind of early adopters that can help them to mould their future products for tech-savvy consumers.
In most cases, the new ideas being shown off by the car manufacturers revolve around connectivity, and how modern vehicles are increasingly melding with our ubiquitous electronic devices and even our homes.
Another major theme is how such fully connected devices can be used to provide greater levels of sophisticated personalisation to the driver if your car, phone, laptop, watch and even your home can communicate with each other.
Mercedes-Benz, for example, is using CES to show off its present and future visions for the connected car. At the moment this involves the use of apps to enhance navigation and information about the cars
The next step will be enabling the driver to access key data about the car from any location via a smartphone or computer. Oh, and the prospect of a car that can communicate with the thermostat in your home, ensuring that you open your front door to a pre-warmed house, isn’t far from reality either.
Mercedes also envisages that intelligent wearable devices can have a major bearing on the cars of tomorrow. For example, a smart watch connected to the car will inform the driver of remaining fuel, the vehicle’s location and even reassure you that you’ve remembered to lock the doors.