According to all the reports from CES, the Consumer Electronics Show was more exciting than ever this year.

A favourite gadget was MarsCat, a robotic kitten – great for people with allergies! The bionic feline can walk, stretch, play with toys, avoid obstacles and bite its nails. It can also recognize human faces and knows 20 commands and phrases, including “sit” and “come here.”

There was also an exciting smart toothbrush which tells you if you are brushing your teeth too hard, a new type of sit-down Segway, bikes that can be pedalled across water and a television which changes from landscape to portrait at a press of a button.

In addition Samsung-backed Neon showed off one of the most cutting-edge but potentially controversial new technologies: “artificial humans” – a new breed of virtual assistants. The service promises that these incredibly life-like CGI creations will interact with users in more powerful ways than existing home assistants, such as Alexa and Google Assistant.

Neon CEO Pranav Mistry told CNN Business he’s not aiming to replace humans but rather add a “species” of complementary companions that can learn your likes and dislikes, such as if you prefer plain or pepperoni pizza, and ultimately become your friends. These Neon avatars will be interactive on smartphones or on larger screens, such as in stores. They’re expected to launch later this year, possibly with a subscription model.

Whilst all of these gadgets and developments – as crazy as some of them seem – are exciting, what is key to remember is that behind all of the ones that have the potential to change the status quo lies data. Whether it is running off a cloud, processing in the cloud, or if it is the algorithms that are analysing the data that is being collected by the sensors; data is the foundation. As we move into a year where 5G, AI, IoT, robotics, Wi-Fi 6, edge computing, AR and VR become increasingly established what is clear is that organisations must get their data strategy in order so that the new technologies that emerge (and they will) can be quickly and more easily integrated into the legacy systems.

If you want to know and understand more about the way data is changing the world you live in, or would like to know how data can add value to your business, please email me at david.gurney@alchemetrics.co.uk


Dave Gurney

CEO, Alchemetrics - Expert in Data & Digital Marketing
enabling senior marketers to value from engaging customers online.