Take a note from CES: Futuristic tech needs context

 

Take a note from CES: Futuristic tech needs context

18 Jan Take a note from CES: Futuristic tech needs context

Story ByCarine A.
Illustration ByAndrea T.

CES made a splash in Las Vegas this past week, and we had fun tuning in to check out the futuristic spectacles and experiential marketing (at least, while they were visible). 5G sounds like it’ll change the VR game forever, self-driving cars are here, and the Jetsons-loving children inside of us couldn’t be any happier.

Credit: Hanna-Barbera

And while the glimpse of great things to come has us pulled our focus, we want to draw attention to a couple of lessons you can learn from the CES keynotes. You see, presenting industry-redefining technology isn’t easy, and the right setup can determine how your hard work is received.

New advancements need context

Innovation doesn’t do well without context and we need to be constantly thinking about how our products and services fit into people’s lives, and that’s exactly why some sources in the media world started to consider VR as a little overrated. But Intel’s keynote rekindled excitement for the medium because they showed it has a range beyond novelty games. How?

By showing and not just telling.

We’re talking musical performances controlled by smart gloves and countless other applications for technology that felt inaccessible (Who else is excited to watch the winter Olympics in VR?). And the cornerstone grounding these cutting-edge capabilities and keeping within the audience’s reach is the keynote itself. A futuristic keynote must have modern design.

Photo by Sean O’Kane / The Verge

 

The future of tech depends on accessibility

Samsung used CES as an opportunity to showcase a prototype of their Relúmĭno smart glasses, an AR headset designed to enhance impaired vision by adding outlines to objects and adjusting colors to make printed words more legible. This prototype is proving that AR is so much more than hype. The key here is that Samsung isn’t developing AR for AR’s sake, but instead is thinking about how the user fits into the picture from the very beginning. The context developed along with technology. As Mark Wilson of Co.Design said, ”AR’s earliest killer apps may be about accessibility, not connectivity”.

Photo by Corinne Reichert/ZDNet

The Takeaway

It really is a fine art to present ground-breaking advances in a way that doesn’t seem overwhelming. It’s all about controlling the visuals and the cadence of your message. Flashy stunts are exciting, but only when they don’t detract from the overall message. If it weren’t for careful planning…this exciting keynote could have been a trainwreck that left the audience confused instead of awestruck.

 

 

Read more:

IA, UI, and UX: the anatomy of awesome digital products

How motion design will transform your UI

9 web design trends to watch



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