Ten Observations From CES 2022

If possible, this year's CES was even stranger than last year's—mainly because it was blended/hybrid instead of all digital. There were plenty of things to talk about regarding CES 2022—CTA CEO Gary Shapiro went on record saying this CES would be "messy." I'll stick to technical topics for this article.

  1. Metaverse is now the most used (and misused) term at CES, replacing Artificial Intelligence (AI), which had been the most used/misused for about five years.
  2. Many said CES 2022 was the best auto show in two years, and they were likely correct—though almost half of the debuts were virtual. GM's announcement of the Chevrolet Silverado EV pickup truck was probably the most significant automotive introduction.
  3. Other types of vehicles were also notable at CES: John Deere introduced a self-driving farm tractor, while Doosan Bobcat debuted an EV compact track loader.
  4. Intel struck back at CES 2022, though their mindshare no longer matches their market share. 12th-generation Core processors and the new Arc Alchemist GPUs were significant introductions, though it remains to be seen how relevant the GPUs will be.
  5. Intel's most successful technology at CES 2022 may have been Thunderbolt 4. Many vendors—including some unexpected ones—introduced Thunderbolt 4-enabled docks and displays.
  6. Few seem to have noted Qualcomm's press conference announcement that many OEMs are interested in building Windows systems based on the Snapdragon ARM processors. I believe this is big news—Qualcomm had statements of support from Acer, Asus, HP, and Lenovo.
  7. It seemed everyone in the home automation sector was talking about Matter, which is supposed to be the connectivity standard that finally unites them all. With support announcements from many of the industry's biggest names, will Matter take off this year? 
  8. There were the usual announcements of enormous televisions from LG, Samsung, Sony, and others—sizes now range up to 110 inches. However, the most important television introduction at CES 2022 may have been LG's C2 42-inch OLED—choosing a very high-quality display will no longer require selecting a large one.
  9. Not every new product at CES is trying to change the world—and I'm grateful for that. As an example, Samsung's Freestyle mobile projector is a clever combination of ideas. Weighing in at less than two pounds, the Freestyle combines a Full HD projector with an adjustable stand and an Alexa-enabled smart speaker.
  10. Finally, CES 2022 returned to a somewhat reassuring degree of bonkers that had been missing in 2021. My number one example was the Indy Autonomous Challenge, where full-size Indy race cars controlled by AI passed each other at 150 mph at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

What did you think of this year's CES?