Atlanta might have the reputation as being a B2B tech town, but there was no shortage of consumer technologies from our region on display last week at the annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
The local company with the largest presence at CES was also the newest company to call Atlanta home. Mercedes-Benz, which officially moved its U.S. headquarters to Atlanta in 2015, showed off a prototype of its AMG C63 S Coupe, Edition 1. The car, which won’t be available for sale until 2017, will reach a top speed of 150mph and accelerate from 0-60 in an amazingly fast 3.8 seconds. The company also showcased its new E-class customizable dashboard, which reportedly, “features the world’s first touch control on a multi-function steering wheel.”
Another Atlanta corporate giant, Turner Sports, produced what it called its largest-ever CES Showcase, which coincided with the conferences’ inaugural Sports Business Forum. NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal, and Dallas Mavericks owner and ‘Shark Tank’ star Mark Cuban participated. The panel discussed the landscape for sports business and the marketplace’s influence on new technologies.
The recently launched intelligent WiFi system for the home, Luma, made its debut at two CES media events. As the brainchild of Atlanta enterprise security veterans and serial entrepreneurs, Dr. Paul Judge and Mike Van Bruinisse, Luma gives consumers the freedom to roam anywhere in and around their home, while still enjoying strong connectivity and the fastest WiFi. The product also comes with built-in enterprise-grade cybersecurity and safety features, such as the ability to set parental controls and pause the Internet. The USA Today honored Luma as an Editors’ Choice Award Winner; it was also granted an Engineering and Design award by CES. According to Van Bruinisse, “CES is the only conference that you can fill up literally an entire week with business development, media and partner meetings.”
Alpharetta-based Sengled confirmed that if you have a ping-pong table at CES, people will come. The intelligent lighting company, which creates products that integrate consumer electronics inside energy efficient LED light bulbs, had a packed exhibitor space at all times. The company showcased several new products, such as one that combines a wireless HD camera with an energy-efficient LED porch light and a product that easily connects an existing subwoofer to enhance the bass of a Pulse Bluetooth speaker system. Its Voice and Flex product won a Best of Innovation Award from CES.
Musicians and anyone who works in loud locations are certain to be fans of ATDC veteran United Sciences LLC. The Buckhead Company took to Vegas to demonstrate its precision 3D scanning technology that is used to create custom fit headphones and earpieces. By taking digital scans of the ear cavity, which the company claims is the most difficult hole in the entire body to profile, consumers can enjoy optimal hearing protection. What’s best about United Sciences, according to Executive Vice President Andy Mathes is that the company has designed “the only technology that can truly measure the geometry of a person’s ear.”
Fitness product company Wahoo Fitness set up live demos of its hardware and software for people who weren’t getting enough exercise walking around the 250,000 square foot Las Vegas Convention Center or the Sands Convention Hall. Launched at CES was a new software product called ‘Studio Connect’ Targeting fitness groups, the software captures a person’s information, such as heart rate and speed, during training and displays the results, which are updated in real-time, on a TV monitor. After the workout, the aggregate results for the session are emailed and the data is stored in the cloud, accessible at any time. The company also announced during CES that its popular ‘7 Minute Workout’ is now available on Apple TV.
Other Metro Atlanta companies at CES included LifeQ, which exhibited in the Living in Digital Times Showcase at CES 2016. The company has a framework that allows for 24/7 monitoring of bodies via data collected from sensor technology. By doing so, it can construct a highly personalized and accurate digital representation of an individual’s unique physiology. One of Atlanta’s most interesting consumer technologies, selfiepay, exhibited its mobile payment wallet that uses facial recognition for verification. The app, which is currently available on Android, promotes security and fraud detection.
Aside from what the Metro Atlanta companies had to offer CES 2016, the ‘connected home,’ virtual reality, and drones dominated the halls of the world’s largest consumer electronics conference.
Evan Goldberg is a director at AR|PR, a technology public relations and integrated communications agency.