CES 2023 preview: Dates, new theme, what to expect and how to attend

CES, the annual tech industry event formerly known as the Consumer Electronics Show, is returning to Las Vegas on January 5, 2023, with the hope that it looks more like it did before the coronavirus pandemic. The four-day show changed its name to CES to better reflect the changing industry and the event, which had expanded beyond audio and video to include automotive, digital health, smartphones, wearables and other technologies.

Companies and startups will showcase innovations in virtual reality, robotics and consumer tech items to the media and others in the tech industry during next month’s gadget show and organisers say their goal is to draw 100,000 attendees.

Exhibitors include many startups and routine visitors like Amazon and Facebook parent Meta, both of which have recently cut jobs and implemented hiring freezes after beefing up their staff during the pandemic. Other tech companies have also been tightening their belts and laying off workers amid concerns about the economic environment.

This is the first time that the show will have a theme — human security. Talking about it, Kinsey Fabrizio, Senior Vice President at the trade group Consumer Technology Association, told The Associated Press, “We were approached by The World Academy of Art and Science, which has been working with the United Nations for a long time on human security. You can think of it as basic human rights — access to food, health care, etc. And they wanted CES to really use this theme because our exhibitors are showcasing how they’re solving some of these big global challenges with technology.”

More than 2,800 companies have reportedly signed up to attend CES 2023, out of which 1,000 are first-timers.

What to expect?

Fabrizio said this year will be a shift from personal tech. “For example, John Deere is showcasing some of their agricultural technology that really contributes to sustainability and access to food. Another company created a secure voting technology on the blockchain, which aligns with the UN theme of political security,” she added.

“Companies will be showcasing some of the solutions that were critical during the pandemic, and a lot of the solutions that have continued to change the way consumers live and behave,” she added.

Metaverse and Web3 — the next big things in tech — are said to have a dedicated part of the show floor with shared and immersive virtual experiences. According to Fabrizio, automaker Stellantis and Microsoft have a partnership to create a showroom in metaverse. There’s also a company called OVR that has created a solution where you can smell in the metaverse.

Who can attend?

As per CES’s official website, it is a trade-only event for individuals 18 years of age or older and affiliated with the consumer technology industry and is not open to the general public. To attend the event you must either be an industry attendee, media personnel or an exhibitor.

The passes for the event can be bought from its website. CES also has a digital-only pass for those who wish to attend remotely. The pass will allow:

  • Access to digital venue for favouriting and schedule review.
  • Exhibitor digital activations.
  • Streaming of keynotes and select conference sessions.

The last edition of CES saw a 70 percent drop in in-person attendance amid the spread of the Omicron variant. The one before that was held virtually, replacing in-person displays and meet-and-greets with video streams and chats. Even if organisers reach their goal for next month’s event, it would still represent a 41 percent dip in attendance compared to the in-person show held in early 2020, before the pandemic consumed much of everyday life.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *