CES 2018: How will technology take us into the future of smart cities?

First published on Celestica’s blog http://www.celestica.com/blog/blogcontent.aspx?id=12884902417

With half of the world’s population expected to live in urban environments by 2030, now is the time for us to be thinking about how to make these cities smarter, more efficient and more enjoyable. This year at CES, we expect major advancements in smart city technologies, with IoT, AI and automation set to take center stage. These advancements are going to impact the way we work, live and play in tomorrow’s smart cities.

We expect AR to find its footing in the B2B space and we are excited for its potential. It could change the way we think about transparency in the supply chain and on the factory floor. This technology could provide supply chain managers with an unprecedented immersive perspective into the supply chain, allowing them to design, inspect and view the entire process as if it were laid out in front of them in real life. In particular, we expect to see HoloLens’ demo of Magna’s ‘car of the future’ and smart glasses.

With sensors becoming more accessible, everyone can attach a sensor to an object; but it is what we can do with the data that is the game changer. We expect to see a lot of innovative biometric applications in particular. This is a huge area to watch for us as sensor advancements will ultimately require and spur on advancements in manufacturing processes.

Sensors are the nerves of the IoT technologies that will make up the smart city. They are becoming increasingly sophisticated and embedded in everything that we do. Sensors tell us how fast we’re going on the highway, what the air quality is around us, and will be integral in making autonomous vehicles a reality.

Over the coming years, autonomous vehicles are set to revolutionize car sharing services, long-distance trucking and even our commutes. They will give us more time with our friends and family, getting us where we need to go in record time. One major barrier to this that remains to be solved, however, is bandwidth. We hope to see major innovation in 5G and LiDAR– connected cars are set to generate massive amounts of data as they not only take in and respond to their ever-changing environments, but also communicate that information with others on the road.

Over the past few years, we’ve seen health tech and health wearables mature rapidly. But while the majority of devices that we know and love are designed for personal fitness and health tracking, some companies are moving towards more high-reliability IoT applications in healthcare. This technology has evolved to diagnostic equipment, going as far as to secure FDA approval to conduct clinical research with medical institutions. This year we hope to see advances in ‘ingestibles’ and ‘hearables’. Hearables include everything from smarter earbuds and headphones to translation devices and hearing aids, while ingestibles provide insights into a person’s well-being and monitors medication from within the patient.

CES is known for showcasing the most innovative technology of the future, and we expect this year to be no exception. In particular, we believe that the technologies coming out of the smart city space in 2018 will change the way we think about the communities we are building and the way we live, play and work. If you want to follow our team on the show floor, tune in to @Celestica_Inc for our live updates!

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