This year’s Consumer Electronics Show is expected to demonstrate strides in some of 2018’s most hyped-up technology sectors. The hundreds of companies that will attend the trade show on January 8 will showcase innovations in foldable phone design, 5G broadband connectivity, autonomous cars, artificial intelligence, and robotics.
2018’s trade show, brought together 182,198 attendees, 1,079 speakers, and 304 of the 2018 Fortune Global 500 companies. And a flurry of teasers, leaks, and social media videos suggest that CES 2019 might be just as massive.
Last year brought about a Nissan car powered by the human brain, a dystopian startup pitch for mentally connected classrooms, and obvious ploys for media attention like these wirelessly chargeable pair of smart underpants. But even with the superfluous tech announcements, CES serves as a way for companies to communicate with consumers about how well some of the most cutting-edge innovation is shaping up.
Here’s everything you need to know about CES 2019
CES 2019 Schedule: Don’t Miss These Keynotes
Amongst the plethora of smaller panels, there are at least five big keynotes you don’t want to skip. All of these will be live streamed on the CES homepage, so set a calendar reminder or fill out your agenda on the website.
The first is the aforementioned talk from the CTA and IBM CEO Ginni Rometty. The executive will kick off CES 2019 with a high-level look at what the crosscutting tech company is focused on. She will likely touch on IBM’s Watson A.I., the same A.I. that powers robots aboard the ISS, and the company’s efforts progress toward developing a quantum computer.
Starting January 8 at 7 p.m. Eastern (4 p.m. Pacific), Verizon CEO Hans Vestberg will speak about the next generation of wireless broadband connectivity, 5G. The cellular carrier was one of the first to offer home 5G service and AT&T will be the first to roll out a mobile network of the high-speed network. Vestberg will likely touch on how this tech will revolutionize Internet of Things devices, bring connectivity to areas that currently don’t have access to speedy internet, and describe future innovations that 5G could enable.
Another good talk to catch? Beginning on January 9 at noon Eastern (9 a.m. Pacific), Lisa Su the CEO of semiconductor company Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), will take the main stage. She’ll discuss what the company plans for its 2019 computer processors. This is worth tuning in for particularly if you’re looking for insights into the future of gaming, virtual reality, and digital visualization.
The fourth talk on our watch-list kicks off on January 9 at 2 p.m. Eastern (11 a.m. Pacific), when U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao will host a panel about the future of mobility tech. This talk will cover subjects ranging from autonomous vehicles, to self-piloting drones and general transportation innovation. She’ll be joined by various executives, experts, and journalists in the field.
Finally, on January 9 at 5 p.m. Eastern (2 p.m. Pacific) a discussion about all things smartphone will kick off. AT&T Communications CEO John Donovan and MediaLink Chairman and CEO Michael Kassan will host a panel about how future applications for handsets. The panelists include representatives form the robotics manufacturing, AR, VR, and public safety industries. It’s a particularly eclectic mix.
CES 2019 Announcements: The Most-Hyped Product Launches
Over the course of 50 years, more than 700,000 tech products have been launched at CES. The trade show’s website lists products from a roster of more than 3,900 exhibitors from this year’s CES. Here are four that we’re most excited for in 2019:
- 4. LG Rollable TV: LG debuted a flatscreen that rolls up like a newspaper last CES and it’s expected to officially launch as a consumer product this year, reported Bloomberg.
- 3. LOVOT, the Robot Sloth: Japanese startup Groove X will be debuting its cute as hell robotic sloth that’s meant to cure loneliness. It comes with 10 CPU cores, 50 different sensors, and makes facial expressions using machine learning. It’s going to be like a fuzzier version of Sony’s robotic dog, Aibo.
- 2. Udelv Autonomous Grocery Delivery: California-based startup Udelv, announced Wednesday that it has news to share, which could be two things. Either the 10-van fleet of self-driving vans it said would deliver food to Oklahoma City residents will begin operation or it has a more ambitious project to unveil.
- 1. Xiaomi Foldable Phone: Finally, Chinese smartphone giant Xiaomi could launch the sleekest foldable phone on the market. Trusted smartphone leaker Evan Blass tweeted alleged footage of the device Thursday and it’s better than anything Royole or Samsung have presented.
CES 2019: Surprises That Could Happen
Foldable phones will be on everyone’s mind come January 8, as Samsung, LG, and Royole have each either teased or released a flexible phone-tablet hybrid. It’s more than possible that we might see one or two of them make an appearance at CES 2019.
Royole’s 7.8-inc FlexPai was the first-ever foldable smartphone brought to market. The company showed it off at an invitation-only event earlier this year in China, but it could host a booth at the trade show for more publicity.
Samsung is almost certainly going to launch its rumored Galaxy F foldable phone in 2019, but the question is when exactly? Most chatter has said late February or March, but a CES launch could create a lot of buzz.
There’s been rumors surrounding that LG could bring its own foldable smartphone to the table at CES. However, this seems more unlikely every day, according to the trusted phone leaker Evan Blass who said as much on Twitter, though he didn’t entirely rule it out, either.
When Is CES 2019 and How You Can Watch
The tech showcase will kick off on January 8 at 11:30 a.m. Eastern (8:30 a.m. Pacific) with opening statements from the Consumer Technology Association and an IBM keynote in the Palazzo Ballroom. This event will be live streamed on the CES website, but not everything will be.
Various keynotes will have entrance and viewing fees. Specific companies will host live streams while other speeches might not be available. There will be hundreds of panels to choose from, so browse through the topics you want to hear about and check to see when and how to tune in.