CES: Shaping the next decade of smarter technologies

CES 2020 does not simply mark the start of another year in consumer electronics development cycles. It opens a new decade that will build on the last ten years of rapid technological change, making it a great time to reflect on where we may be heading.

As we enter the 2020s we’re already working with many of the core technologies that will power an ongoing revolution in how we work and live. Electronics and software are now embedded into almost everything we do, making a vast array of products and equipment more aware of their surroundings, and enabling smarter decisions.

Smart and affordable sensors using Internet of Things technologies, connected by 5G, and subject to cloud-based AI and machine learning will drive the creation of more intelligent systems, capable of evolving and improving their operations.

The sort of updates we’re all familiar with on our mobile phones are now the norm across other consumer electronics hardware. Meanwhile, industrial equipment and machine tools are able to sense their operating environments and better predict their maintenance routines and update appropriately.

However, our next challenges are going to be tougher and it will take more than technology to solve them. Looking back at the last 10 years of technology adoption, it’s clear it’s not technology that makes the difference. It’s how we choose to apply it. Initial enthusiasm for social media, for example, has been tempered by an understanding of how it can also be misused.

The next wave of digitsalisation needs to draw on the understanding and insight we have gained over the last ten years to bring benefits to businesses and individuals at a significantly greater scale. Leveraging technology in ways that fully benefit people and industry will involve collaboration between a wide number of stakeholders to address the issues of interoperability, communication standards, privacy and security.

At the same time we need to apply technology more extensively to critical areas where it will make a positive difference, whether it’s making manufacturing more efficient and sustainable, enabling homes to optimise energy use, using design software to improve civic sanitation, helping a Nepalese farmer to optimise crop rotation, or developing a remote AI-driven medical application to better recognise and prescribe the right medication.

We’re starting this decade with a much greater understanding of technology’s strengths and weaknesses. My resolution is to be able to look back in ten years’ time and say I’ve achieved my goal of using technology to help our customers create a smarter, better environment.

To find out more about how Hexagon is making the world smarter, visit us at CES between 7 January and 10 January 2020 at our pavilion, CP 15, in the Las Vegas Convention Center’s Central Plaza.


  • Keith Perrin

    Keith Perrin joined MSC Software and Hexagon in February 2017, bringing more than 15 years of experience in the US and EMEA with Siemens, Autodesk and Oracle Cloud. Today, as an Industry Director for Hexagon Manufacturing, Keith gets to leverage 20 years of digital design, modeling and simulation experience helping customers realise their aspirations.

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